Unlike Week 8, the Week 9 waiver wire isn’t straight trash. Derrick Henry, Calvin Ridley, Jameis Winston, and the horrifying news breaking about Henry Ruggs open a plethora of opportunities to pick up starters at multiple positions. However, there are still some significant traps set up across the waivers. Like I said in Week 8, this is the most critical stretch in the season for pickups. Playing it smart is key to a playoff run.
Gut-Wrenching. Heart-Breaking. But It has to be Done
Let’s start with allowing yourself to drop Derrick Henry if you don’t have an open IR spot. I know it will be challenging, and maybe you can send him off to a team who might not make the playoffs, ensuring you won’t have to lose the Championship Trophy against him. However, a 6’3, 247-pound man is going to struggle to get a broken foot healthy and ready to go in time to keep you competitive.
Now I know Henry has done some superhuman things. His ability to stay healthy thus far in his career makes me feel like he could recover in a miraculous two weeks and be back on the field. But I know deep down, it won’t happen. So feel ok letting him go.
But letting Henry go doesn’t mean to go pick up a scrub.
Running Backs on Shitty Offenses
Rex Burkhead was one of the biggest surprises of Week 9. If you said you felt great starting him in anything other than best ball, you’re lying. After only out-snapping Phillip Lindsay once this season (only by one snap) and never playing more than David Johnson, Burkhead played a whopping 28 snaps.
Looking at his 13.8 fantasy points makes it seem like Burkhead could be a weekly flex option. However, the Texans only had one play inside the five and just seven red zone attempts the entire outing. In addition, he only has five receptions on the season, of which Mark Ingram had little to no effect.
1st and 10 and another play action with downfield options for Mills (Kelly is letting him throw after those screens).— Jordan (@Texans_Thoughts) October 27, 2021
Nico is the best option on his corner but would need a perfect and difficult throw
Auclair (83) misses his block, Heck doesnt hold his for long either, turnover pic.twitter.com/fzY6p9b53G
Burkhead is a running back on a lousy offense who will see a meager touch premium. If Ingram struggled to create fantasy relevance, so will Burkhead. Let him implode your league mate’s roster as they get their team name engraved on the Toilet Bowl Trophy.
Why is Rhamondre Stevenson Still Discussed? He's Week 9 Waiver Wire Garbage
Every. Damn. Week. Why is Rhamondre Stevenson a thing? It’s not that he hasn’t been relevant; he has only been active for half of the games so far in 2021. Even when he has played, Stevenson’s utilization has not been encouraging.
Rhamondre Stevenson has gotten one opportunity on third down this entire season but has seen looks on 31 of the 53 snaps he's played while being active for 50-percent of his games.— Chase Vernon (@ff_intervention) November 2, 2021
I have no idea what any of it means. Just felt like providing some useless information.
Getting opportunities to run the ball up the middle on first and second down is not what you want from a back with no burst and very little break-away speed. Stevenson only had one of his 25 rushing opportunities go for over ten yards. His one carry inside the five is also discouraging as some compared him to 2016 LeGarrette Blount.
Sure, if you have Damien Harris in a deep league, I could see handcuffing him when you get closer to the playoffs. However, doing it right now would result in missing opportunities on players like Adrian Peterson or Derrick Gore.
Wait, What? Burn that Waiver Wire Trash
How someone could say, “Pick up Kendrick Bourne,” is baffling. He is the third receiver on the Patriots in snaps with only two red-zone targets throughout 2021, and he was replaced by N’Keal Harry (!) in Week 8 after a third-quarter fumble. Not to mention, the Patriots face the Panthers in Week 9. As Ian Hartitz would say, “Sheesh.”
What people will put on the internet will never cease to amaze me.
In all reality, Bourne is a solid WR3 in actual football. He’s solid in almost every facet of the game. However, he is not fantasy-relevant. The stats speak for themselves: 10.3 (No.49) average target distance, 16.1-percent (No.65) air yards share, and a 28.6-percent (No.49) contested catch rate. I could go all day. Invest in players who have opportunities or can make big plays—don’t invest in sporadic points scored.
You Know, How I Know, You’re Into BDSM? You're Targeting Teddy Bridgewater's Trash Ass
Over the past 23 games, Teddy Bridgewater has thrown for over 300 yards four times and two touchdowns once. His schedule in 2021 has been one of the easiest against quarterbacks— the Jets being the toughest. It took him 49 passing attempts against the Raiders to produce three touchdowns in which he also threw three interceptions and lost a fumble.
Against the Cowboys, who are leading the league in interceptions while applying pressure on quarterbacks 24.4-percent of the time: absolutely not. Throw game script out the window. There are far better plays at quarterback instead of this Week 9 waiver wire trash.
Bridgewater is a solid game manager, and although the points don’t show it, his advanced stats from PlayerProfiler show tendencies of a great fantasy quarterback. Seventh most red zone attempts with the sixth-highest completion percentage inside the 20. 55.8-percent pressured completion rate is the sixth-highest as well. He has 8.8 (No.6) air yards per attempt and targets receivers the fifth most downfield with 37 such passes. His eight red zone carries are also the sixth most. However, his receivers haven’t helped him after the catch and the Broncos are average just 61.4 (No.24) plays per game.
When Jerry Jeudy returns, we should see a fantasy burst, but it won’t happen against the Cowboys. Three of the following four games are some of the toughest matchups he’ll face all season. Instead, pick him up prior to the Chargers game in Week 12 for free and ride him over the next five weeks on your way to the Title Belt.
Wrong time to pick him up off waivers; wrong player to invest your FAAB.
Invest Intelligently and Don't Chase Week 9 Waiver Wire Trash
Scheduling is a massive part of investing intelligently. Improper timing can cause an enormous lapse in a team’s ability to compete down the stretch. Don’t be dumb. Just because someone told you to pick a guy up doesn’t mean you should just lay it all out.
Look at the scheduling, check out the rest of your waivers, and join us next week so you don’t waste your FAAB