It’s already Week 9. Week 9! That’s just four weeks away from the fantasy football playoffs for most of us. It’s time to start tightening up those rosters. As you exit your bye weeks, consider picking up extra running backs, wide receivers, and maybe a bang-or-bust fantasy playoff quarterback. These players could be the extra push you need to win in the playoffs, or they could do absolutely nothing for you. At least you’ll use your bench spots wisely.
When picking up free agents, you should also consider whether their current hype could get you a proven veteran with a great schedule for the fantasy playoffs. MJD, anyone?
Could Steve Johnson and your backup quarterback steal — if you got Big Ben at a discount, for example — land you MJD and a lesser receiver for Weeks 14-16? If it can, consider that deal.
If you’re a lock to make the playoffs, start planning your wins for Weeks 14-16. It’s that time. Now, on to the pickups.
LeGarrette Blount, RB, Bucs
Get him? Got him? Good. I hope you’ve been listening to all the Blount I’ve been talking for weeks. He’s a starting running back the rest of the way on a winning team and getting a hefty, at least in Week 8, amount of carries with more than 20 touches.
Steve Johnson, WR, Bills
He’s legit, and he seems to always find his way to the end zone. His size makes him the best Buffalo’s got when they get deep into enemy territory.
Jacob Tamme, TE, Colts
Is it fair that the Colts have a mini-Dallas Clark just waiting in the wings for a chance to play? No. But it is nice for Dallas Clark’s former fantasy owners.
Anthony Gonzalez, WR, Colts
He’s working his way back into the offense in Indianapolis, but the absence of Austin Collie leaves the door wide open for him to contribute in a big way each week.
Sidney Rice, WR, Vikings
There’s a slim chance he’s available in your league since someone probably drafted him and held onto him all season, despite my best efforts to convince them to let him go. But if Rice is out there, he might be able to make an impact during the fantasy football playoffs now that Moss is out of Minnesota.
Darrius Heyward-Bey, WR, Raiders
It’s unlikely that he’ll repeat his Week 8 performance, but in a way, he’s all the Raiders have in the passing game. McFadden’s challenging the defenses to use additional blockers to stop the run, which should free things up for DHB if he can break the big one AND catch the ball. It’s harder than it looks for DHB.
Visanthe Shiancoe, TE, Vikings
Without Randy Moss, Brett Favre could turn back to his tight end. Shiancoe started off the season with two strong performances before falling off the map and becoming completely irrelevant after Moss’ arrival. If Favre can still be effective with his injuries, both physically and to his ego, Shiancoe could become the Vikings best red zone target. But that’s could become, not will, until we see the Vikings passing game come back to life post-Moss.
Troy Smith, QB, 49ers
Maybe the 49ers just started the season with the wrong Smith under center. Smith threw for one touchdown and ran for another in his London debut. He’s on a bye this week, but as long as he keeps the starting job when he returns, he’ll face the Rams, Bucs and Cardinals before he hits a harder stretch against the Packers, Seahawks, and Chargers.
Brandon Tate, WR, Pats
It was Tate, not Deion Branch, who made the big plays on Sunday. Branch was dealing with an injury, but the spark that Tate provided won’t go unnoticed. Maybe those who wrote off Tate after the Patriots acquired Branch spoke too soon. While unreliable, Tate should be owned in deep leagues. But until he gets more attention from Tom Brady, I’d hold off on starting him.
Derek Anderson, QB, Cardinals
Arizona turned to the veteran again on Sunday after Max Hall failed to get the offense moving. With Anderson under center, the Cardinals looked a little bit like a shadow of their former selves — just a little bit. Assuming Anderson gets the start next week, he’d be a fine stash. The schedule gets much brighter for the Cardinals the rest of the way. They play the Broncos, Panthers, and Cowboys in Weeks 14-16, typically fantasy playoffs.
More waivery wires:
- As always, the FF Librarian has a wealth of waiver wire links in her Week 8 Rewind and Tough times in waiver land
- In this week’s TMR, Matthew Berry got to Ranking the free agents since there isn’t much out there. He loves him some Josh Freeman.
- Fanhouse hits the highlights with Waiver Wire Wonders: LeGarrette Blount Hurdles to Stardom, including notes on Ricky Williams, Matthew Stafford, and Jon Kitna
- FF Toolbox: Week 9: Pickups of the Week hits on a few names you might have neglected last week like Ryan Fitzpatrick
- The FF Geek Blog brings their spreadsheet into action for The Wire — Week 9 pick-ups: LeGarrette Blount including notes on Danny Woodhead and “Law Firm”
- Daniel McQuade’s Sports Illustrated fantasy football waiver wire brings up a scary fact: The Oakland Raiders are a top five fantasy defense. He also breaks down what Sidney Rice might bring to the table when he returns.
- Razzball suggests a few team defense plays in addition to the usual waiver wire suspects in this week’s Waivering Wire
- The Big Lead digs deep at every position in their Week 9 Fantasy Football Waiver Wire: Blount Trama and recommends jumping on the Tarvaris Jackson train if Brett Favre finally goes down. But that man is like a cockroach — nothing keeps him from starting.
- Hatty Waiver Wire Guru and Roto Arcade bring the visuals with Hatty’s Week 9 Waiver Wire and Roto Arcade’s Straight to Video: Pickups for Week 9
- Pro Football Focus’s Week 8 Waiver Wire report breaks down the Redskins running back situation
- Fantasy Knuckleheads gives you a full list of quarterbacks that could help those left wanting at the position in Waiver Wire Week 9, LeGarrette Blount and Troy Smith BLEW UP