I know I’m not telling you anything you don’t already know, but what a crazy week it was. Injuries just seem to be piling up, and we all know that getting good information can be challenging. The best thing you can do is to stay active and aware. So let’s take a look at some names that have caught my eye this week as it pertains to the waiver wire:
Cam Newton – QB – Carolina Panthers
At the beginning of the season thinking Newton would be a waiver wire possibility would have been unheard of. He really was never healthy at the start of the season, and he has attempted just 89 passes so far this year while carrying the ball just five times. Based on how the Panthers were using, or really not using Newton, it’s not all that surprising they ignored him as a ball carrier. On the passing spectrum he was 50 for 89 with 572 yards and an interception, but we have to think that his woes can be chalked up to the injuries.
It is still too early to know, but the thought is that Newton is fully healthy and will be back in action this coming week against the Titans. Kyle Allen has been successful, but I’d think that the Panthers would give Newton another shot. On the heels of the rookie struggling (to put it mildly) against 49ers, the timing does work out.
Daniel Jones – QB – New York Giants
The rookie has been working up to this moment, and it likely will be the last week he appears on this list. Granted there was some garbage time involved this past week in Detroit, but the production was there. Jones attempted 41 passes, but he was efficient as he completed 28 of them for 322 yards and 4 TD. We also saw the rookie develop some chemistry with Darius Slayton (more on him later), and that should stand to benefit him moving forward.
Next week Jones gets the Cowboys, and we should expect more of the same from him before the rookie gets to take advantage of the Jets in two weeks. After topping out at just 1 TD for each of the last four weeks, it was a good sign to see Jones get the chance to air things out.
Derrius Guice – RB – Washington Redskins
Let’s keep the stashing going as the back end of your roster should be consistently churned for upside, and that brings us to Guice. If you are in a good situation as it pertains to your bye weeks and injuries, then why not grab and hold onto the Washington running back for the next two weeks? Thanks to his own injuries we have never really seen what Guice can do in the NFL, 10 carries for 18 yards, but perhaps that will change in two weeks. While his status is still officially unclear, you would think that the Redskins would want to see what they have. The earliest he can return is Week 11, and it just so happens he would get to face the Jets (and we know what will likely take place then).
Alexander Mattison – RB – Minnesota Vikings
Nothing has changed in Mattison’s situation, he is still behind Dalvin Cook on the depth chart, but that doesn’t mean he’s not worth a look. In what was an ugly game against the Redskins, the Vikings pounded the ball on the ground and that meant Mattison got to carry the ball 13 times. The understudy gained 61 yards, and he looked explosive while doing so. As Minnesota looks to keep Cook healthy and rested for the duration of the season they likely will lean that much more on Mattison as the season progresses. Of course if Cook does get injured it’s pretty clear who will become an RB1. If you need anymore proof as to why this is a prudent strategy, look no further than owners of both Saints or Cardinals running backs over the last two weeks.
Tra Carson – RB – Detroit Lions
If fantasy owners were rushing to Google to figure out who exactly Carson was, they weren’t alone. The Lions claimed the running back off waivers 10 days ago, and out of nowhere he ended up starting on Sunday. It’s not like Carson really did that well, 12 carries for 34 yards, but the start counts for something. The problem is more so for owners of who grabbed last week’s waiver wire darling; Ty Johnson. With seven carries for 25 yards, Johnson was an absolute disaster as most fantasy owners plugged him right into their starting lineups. By no means am I going to recommend spending a lot of FAAB on Carson this week, but based on the role you have to at least be aware of him.
Darius Slayton – WR – New York Giants
Slayton only caught two passes, but he made both of them count. He connected with Daniel Jones for 2 TD as he showed off some big play potential with 50 receiving yards. Entering the week Slayton was targeted 22 times and had caught 14 passes for 217 yards and 1 TD. With 15.5 yards per reception he is making things happen when he does catch the ball, and I would expect to see him continue to build chemistry with Jones. It appears that Sterling Shepard will be out another week, though Slayton does have a role in New York’s offense regardless. The problem is that it is more boom or bust in nature.
Chris Conley – WR – Jacksonville Jaguars
Unfortunately boom or bust is really where a majority of our waiver wire targets live when it comes to wide receivers, and that brings us to Conley. To be honest if he didn’t have a 70 yard touchdown reception,we probably wouldn’t be discussing him, but that is the nature of the beast. This isn’t the first week Conley has caught our attention, but he is more of a complementary piece to Jacksonville’s offense. However it was the second straight week of seven targets for Conley, who this week converted it into four receptions for 103 yards and that touchdown as part of what is becoming a solid Jacksonville offense.
Demaryius Thomas – WR – New York Jets
It’s never a good thing when your quarterback is seeing ghosts and Sam Darnold threw three more interceptions this week, but there is still some talent there. Granted the Jets don’t look like it at all times, but there is something there. With there being potential rumors of a Robby Anderson trade, that could serve to benefit Thomas. We know all about what Thomas has done in the past, but last week was the first time we saw him truly make an impact this season. Against the Jaguars he caught five passes for 63 yards, and that is a very repeatable performance.
Darren Fells – TE – Houston Texans
Touchdowns… When it comes to tight ends that is what we want, and yesterday that is what we got from Fells as he found the end zone twice. It was the second game this season in which the tight end has scored 2 TD. Overall Fells had six receptions for 58 yards in what was also the second game this year in which he caught six passes.
Make sure to check out all of our Week 9 rankings: