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Deeper League Free Agent Pickups for Week 9


Whether your fantasy team is sitting pretty at 7-1 or is still clawing toward contention at 3-5, you shouldn't neglect the waiver wire. Especially in deeper leagues where you need any edge you can get at the flex position. With bye weeks in full effect and the free agent scraps getting fewer and fewer, let me direct you toward some players that can be of service to your team.

As a reminder, keep an eye out to see if anyone in your league happened to drop players from teams previously on bye to make space on their roster. It happens more often than you may think.

The following players are owned in approximately 10% or fewer of Yahoo leagues, so they won't be the flashiest names on the market. But if you're looking for a good spot start or just need some high-upside lottery tickets, these are your guys. Let's look at some potential waiver wire adds in deep leagues.

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Free Agent Quarterbacks

Kyle Allen, Carolina Panthers - 8% owned

Folks undoubtedly rage-dropped Allen after his truly awful performance against the 49ers, in which he put up a paltry 158 yards with zero touchdowns and three interceptions. But anyone expecting him to be fantasy relevant against San Francisco's top two defense had unreasonably high expectations anyhow.

Allen will get at least one more start this week against Tennessee, who projects as middle-of-the-road matchup for opposing quarterbacks. Sure, Jameis Winston looked bad against them last week for real football purposes, but he still topped 300 passing yards and added a couple of scores against them on a road matchup. Allen at least gets to face the Titans at home, which will make it just his second start from within the friendly confines of Bank of America Stadium.

Ryan Fitzpatrick, Miami Dolphins - 5% owned

I know, I know. But it's tough out there in the fantasy QB landscape and Fitzpatrick has at least proven an ability to chuck the ball downfield with some success. There was a glimmer of Fitzmagic early in his game against the Steelers this past week when he tossed two touchdowns in the first quarter. Pittsburgh stymied him after that, however, as he wouldn't taste the end zone again all game. He also threw two interceptions, though neither were actually his fault.

He'll get a reasonable matchup against the Jets this week, whose passing defense has allowed the 9th-most yards to opposing quarterbacks over the last three weeks.

 

Free Agent Running Backs

Benny Snell Jr., Pittsburgh Steelers - 8% owned

If you didn't hold onto Snell through his bye week -- which clearly the majority of you did not based on his ownership percentage -- in anticipation his juicy matchup against Miami, you'll want to scoop him up now as the handcuff for an oft-injured James Conner. In fact, Conner once again suffered an injury in the game against the Dolphins, exiting the stadium with his arm in a sling after injuring his AC joint.

Though the severity is unknown at this time, you'll want to pick up any of his handcuffs still available on waivers in case he can't go against Indianapolis this week. Jaylen Samuels is also expected to return next week, so don't expect Snell to get a massive workload regardless.

Raheem Mostert, San Francisco 49ers - 6% owned

You'll want to keep your eyes on the 49ers injury reports coming into Thurday's matchup with the Cardinals, as the backfield in San Francisco has once again been ravaged by injuries. If he's active, Mostert could end up being the No 2 in their backfield with Matt Breida sustaining yet another injury in the first half of last week's game. Mostert was able to put up 60 yards and a touchdown on just nine carries in Breida's steed, and has massive upside against Arizona's soft run defense.

 

Free Agent Wide Receivers

Danny Amendola, Detroit Lions - 10% owned

It turns out the 33-year-old slot receiver still possesses some fantasy relevance after all. Amendola has now seen at least eight targets and 95 yards in each of his last two games and now has three such games on the season. He's also been on the field for at least 67% of offensive snaps over the last two contests, which is a sharp increase from the previous two weeks where he didn't top 36%.

The Lions should be throwing the ball a lot against Oakland in what could turn out to be one of the the highest-scoring fantasy matchups of the week. Amendola has nearly zero touchdown upside, but his target share makes him a worthwhile flex play in PPR formats.

Taylor Gabriel, Chicago Bears - 5% owned

Playing any Bears pass-catcher outside of Allen Robinson can feel like putting a metal fork in the microwave and then pressing your face directly against the door, but Gabriel could have some value this week. He gets to play the Philadelphia defense, who is league-worst against receivers for fantasy purposes.

Gabriel has been working his way back into the offense after suffering a concussion earlier in the season and being held out Weeks 4 and 5. He was on the field for 74% of offensive snaps against the Chargers last week, and caught 4-of-6 for 53 yards. He's always capable of breaking off a huge play and this matchup provides much better odds of that than most.

 

Free Agent Tight Ends

Irv Smith Jr., Minnesota Vikings - 2% owned

There aren't many (or possibly any) legitimate tight end options available on waivers in deeper leagues. Because of that, you'll want to consider guys that could pop if the stars align. Smith is an uber-athletic tight end that has flashed a lot of promise when called to action, but the problem is he has Kyle Rudolph ahead of him on the depth chart. Also, Kirk Cousins typically looks to Adam Thielen and Stefon Diggs to carry the load. Still, Smith has gotten more involved in the offense over the last handful of games and is worth a stash if your tight end situation is dire.

Foster Moreau, Oakland Raiders - 1% owned

This is entirely a "praying for a touchdown" scenario. Oakland's passing attack currently goes through the tight end position, but 90% of that production currently goes through Darren Waller. Still, in what projects to be a battle of two above-average quarterbacks playing against subpar defenses, this could actually turn into a shootout. And that means Moreau has a chance to add another touchdown to his 2019 stat line.

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