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Waiver Wire Rankings: Expert Pickups for Week 9

Nov 2, 2015

The Steelers backfield belongs to DeAngelo Williams now and he's easily the top waiver wire addition if available

The Steelers backfield belongs to DeAngelo Williams now and he’s easily the top waiver addition if available

Last week, the league lost Arian Foster. This week, it lost one of the best, if not the best running back in Le’Veon Bell. The injuries are part of football and if your fantasy team isn’t deep enough to account for those injuries, then you’re going to need hit the waiver wire to make up some ground. There really isn’t any question to who the top waiver add for Week 9 should be. The question is if DeAngelo Williams is available. Based on ownership percentages, quite a few people dropped Williams after disappearing from the game plan when Bell returned. This could be your chance at potentially the best free agent all season and the experts agree.

However, if you have no shot at Williams, we’re here to provide you guidance on who else to consider for your waiver claim(s). Our featured experts were asked to rank the top waiver options that are readily available (based on Yahoo ownership) so you have more than a couple choices. We also realize that you may need to stream a defense this weekend so we asked the pundits who they feel are worth a pickup.

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Featured Pros

Greg SmithThe Fake Football
Ken ZalisPressBox
Zach WilkensRotoBaller
Tony MaurielloProjectRoto

Waiver Wire Rankings (Standard Scoring)

Player Position Team Consensus Rank Best Rank Worst Rank Yahoo
Ownership %
DeAngelo Williams RB PIT 1 1 1 24%
Jeremy Langford RB CHI 2.5 2 3 8%
David Cobb RB TEN 4 2 9 23%
Kamar Aiken WR BAL 4.5 4 5  19%
Stevie Johnson WR SD 6.3 6 7 43%
Ben Watson TE NO 6.8 4 11 52%
Nate Washington WR HOU 7 3 9 25%
Theo Riddick RB DET 7.5 5 10 24%
Dwayne Harris WR NYG 9.8 7 14 5%
Robert Woods WR BUF 10.3 6 13 5%
Kendall Gaskins RB SF 10.8 7 21 0%
Malcom Floyd WR SD 13 11 17 19%
Jamison Crowder WR WAS 13.3 11 18 8%
Crockett Gillmore TE BAL 13.5 12 14 13%
Marquess Wilson WR CHI 14.8 13 16 4%
Antonio Andrews RB TEN 15.5 13 17 33%
Chris Givens WR BAL 16.3 15 18 0%
Joique Bell RB DET 17.3 10 20 20%
Jacob Tamme TE ATL 18.5 17 21 6%
Heath Miller TE PIT 19.3 19 20 28%
Marques Colston WR NO 19.5 16 21 36%

Week 8 Waiver Wire Advice

Each expert was asked to share the reasoning behind their waiver rankings as well as what percentage of their FAAB should owners spend on Alfred Blue. Here’s what the experts had to say.

Q1: Give us your thoughts on another waiver wire target (or two) you especially like as a pickup.

Tony MaurielloProjectRoto
“With Steve Smith’s season (and possibly his career) over following a torn Achilles tendon he suffered in the Ravens’ 29-26 victory over the Chargers, Joe Flacco and the slightly pass-heavy offense will need a new the top receiver. Kamar Aiken caught all six of his targets for sixty-two yards on Sunday and now has 25 receptions for 333 yards and two TDs. Aiken is more of a possession receiver, but he filled in for Smith earlier this season as the team’s WR1. With the Ravens on bye this week, many will overlook Aiken and spend their FAAB dollars elsewhere.”

Greg SmithThe Fake Football
“All aboard the Nate Washington bandwagon! Despite his dicey quarterback situation, Washington has performed at a top-15 level among wideouts when he’s been on the field. He’s averaging 11.82 standard fantasy points per game, which puts him on par with Keenan Allen and ahead of Jarvis Landry, James Jones, T.Y. Hilton, Eric Decker, Travis Benjamin, Demaryius Thomas, and many other quality receivers. The smaller sample size certainly factors into his per-game success, but playing opposite DeAndre Hopkins has created a lucrative fantasy opportunity for Washington and he is worth a high waiver priority if you need wide receiver help.”

Ken ZalisPressBox
“Well you have to jump all over DeAngelo Williams as he was great the 1st two weeks while Bell was out, and filled in nicely Sunday once Bell was injured. He is a must add in all formats and well worth 60% or more of FAAB. David Cobb is a must add this week. He’ll be back as soon as this week and the thought is he will be thrust into a heavy workload. Cobb reminds me of Le’Veon Bell a bunch and he will be the most talented RB in Titanland upon his arrival.”

Zach WilkensRotoBaller
“As far as waiver pickups go, running backs with opportunities to be the lead back always takes precedent. That means this includes DeAngelo Williams, David Cobb and to a lesser extent Jeremy Langford as well. Focusing on David Cobb, no Titans RB has stepped up and given the Titans the production they need. Antonio Andrews has been okay, but not to the point where Cobb won’t get a fair crack at this job. If Cobb is even just average that might make him the best RB in Tennessee. He has a real shot to get 15+ touches a game and that makes him one of my top pickups this week.”

Q2: For owners renting a D/ST in Week 9 or beyond, what readily available option should they target and why?

Greg SmithThe Fake Football
“They have performed at a top-12 level so far this season, and thanks to a scary matchup with Pittsburgh over Halloween weekend, the Cincinnati Bengals are available in 67% of leagues. Their Week 9 opponent, the Browns, allow the second-most points per game to fantasy defenses. The Bengals have the added benefit of playing their soft matchup at home with a non-zero chance of facing backup Johnny Manziel on a short week. Beyond Week 9, Cinci’s defense should maintain value thanks to a relatively favorable schedule, so buy in now before they’re owned everywhere.”

Zach WilkensRotoBaller
“The Cincinnati Bengals should be a great D/ST for Week 9. On a short week against the Browns, I think they have a very high floor. The Browns have averaged 3 turnovers in their last three games and Josh McCown appears to be very banged up. The Bengals just handled Ben Roethlisberger with ease, so the Browns should be no problem.”

Tony MaurielloProjectRoto
“In looking for potential DSTs to use in any upcoming week, you should focus on teams that are at home, are Vegas favorites of at least three points (-3.0 spread) and will be playing in a game that has a projected over/under of 44.0 points or less. For week 9, one DST that should be available on your waiver wire is the New Orleans Saints (-8.0 home favorites; O/U is off as of this posting). Yes, this is the same Saints team that surrendered 49 points at home to the Giants on Sunday, but the team now hosts a Tennessee Titans team that managed just two field goals and 257 yards of total offense. The Titans o-line also surrendered seven sacks and eight tackles for losses.”

Ken ZalisPressBox
“For a long-term outlook, I like the Kansas City Chiefs. After facing Denver in Week 10 (they have a bye in Week 9), the schedule really opens up for them. They have playmakers at every level and are starting to put things together. Love their potential.”

Thanks to the experts for ranking their top waiver pickups for Week 9. For more advice from them, please follow them on Twitter.

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