This is Waiver Wire Week 8!
We got through Byemaggedon. This week, fantasy managers will have a full slate of games and many waiver wire options. Mid season is here, and it is the time to constantly improve your depth and roster quality.
NOTE: All players listed are available in 25% or more of Yahoo Leagues unless listed as a SHALLOW LEAGUE ADD.
SHALLOW LEAGUE ADD: Kyler Murray | Arizona (42%)
Despite Kyler Murray‘s return to practice, he still is available in 58 percent of Yahoo Leagues. This is a no brainer addition to any fantasy team. Murray has provided QB1 value throughout his entire career and was the QB7 in fantasy PPG last season.
Gardner Minshew | Indianapolis (8%)
We finally have some Minshew Magic. The Colts lost a thrilling high-scoring shootout on the road to Cleveland 39-38- the highest-scoring game of the week. Minshew was terrific, finishing with 305 passing yards with two TD passes and an interception. He also added two rushing TDs to go along with 29 rushing yards.
Minshew has now passed for 300+ yards in back to back games. His next three games are difficult, but Minshew should be comfortably treated as a mid QB2 with upside.
SHALLOW LEAGUE ADD: Derek Carr | New Orleans (35%)
Carr has passed for over 300 yards in back-to-back games and is trending up. The Saints offense has shown signs of improvement with 24 and 34 points scored in two of their last three games. Carr has the weapons at his disposal with Alvin Kamara, Chris Olave, Michael Thomas, and Rashid Shaheed at his disposal. The Saints have three great matchups coming up with Indianapolis, Chicago, and Minnesota on tap.
Desmond Ridder | Atlanta (14%)
Ridder rushed for a TD and passed for 250 yards and could have had another QB1 finish if not for his three fumbles. Still, there has been signs of life with Ridder and the Atlanta offense. The next three games are all winnable and should provide Ridder with some decent passing numbers. He is a Superflex starter.
Bryce Young | Carolina (10%)
Young is coming off of his bye week, and the opportunity is there for Carolina to self-scout some offensive improvement. This week, all eyes will be on the C.J. Stroud–Bryce Young matchup as Carolina hosts Houston. In Weeks 9 and 10, Young will face off against Indianapolis and Chicago- two of the most generous opposing defenses in the league.
Mac Jones | New England (8%)
Jones passed for 272 yards and two TDs in New England’s win over Buffalo and finds himself back on the fantasy radar. Jones has a divisional matchup against Miami this week, and then then two stream-able games against Washington and Indianapolis.
Tyson Bagent | Chicago (4%)
Bagent is on the Superflex radar. Chicago has a plus matchup against the Chargers this week.
Darrell Henderson | Los Angeles Rams (25%)
Henderson played 57 percent of the Rams snaps and dominated the RB production. He finished with 18 carries for 61 yards and a TD and caught one of two targets. For Henderson, to do this with less than a week back with the organization is telling. I would prioritize him this week. He is a low-end RB2 moving forward and should have the opportunity for more work as a pass catcher this week against a tough Cowboys defense. Because of his short-term viability, he is my No. 1 Waiver Wire priority this week.
Pierre Strong | Cleveland (1%)
Jerome Ford suffered an ankle injury and could miss some time. Strong led Cleveland in 4th quarter offensive snaps and finished with eight carries for 25 yards. I would anticipate that Kareem Hunt has the most work in Cleveland’s backfield, but Strong should also play a big role.
With Deshaun Watson injured and PJ Walker behind center, there will be more of an emphasis on the RB position for the Browns. Strong, a fourth-round pick in the 2022 NFL Draft, has elite speed. He is worth a FAAB bid this week in most formats. There is also a chance that the 28-year-old Hunt cannot handle increased volume, and Strong handles the majority of the Browns carries.
Emari Demercado | Arizona (15%)
There was a big head-scratching WTF moment for fantasy managers on Sunday, as Emari Demercado dominated the Arizona RB usage. In Week 6, Demercado left many fantasy teams holding a near 0 as he struggled to produce anything, and Keaontay Ingram led Arizona’s backfield in fantasy points. In Week 7, Demercado had promising usage, finishing with 13 carries with four catches on five targets. James Conner will be back, but until he returns, Demercado is the Arizona back to roster.
SHALLOW LEAGUE ADD: Royce Freeman | Los Angeles Rams (28%)
Freeman was less busy than Henderson, but he was still productive. He ran for 66 yards on 12 carries and showed burst. The pecking order is still up in the air, with Henderson looking like the preferred option. Freeman should still be added, as Henderson may not hold up.
Devin Singletary | Houston (15%)
Houston was on their bye. Here is what I wrote about Singletary last week.
The Texans radically changed their RB usage as Singletary saw the most work he has had in any game this season. This new coaching staff has no allegiance to Dameon Pierce. This could be an actual change of the guard. It is likely an ugly usage split, but Singletary will have the more high-value touches.
Pierce’s futility has opened a path for the veteran RB. Singletary had a season-high 12 carries for 58 yards and two targets. Singletary has finished as RB30 and RB24 the past two seasons in fantasy PPG. If he continues to earn carries in this underrated offense, he could provide flex appeal for the rest of the season.
Latavius Murray | Buffalo (22%)
James Cook bounced back and dominated the Buffalo backfield touches. Cook had 13 rushes to Murray’s four and caught three passes to Murray’s one. Murray should be treated as a high-end handcuff in one of the league’s best offenses.
SHALLOW LEAGUE ADDS: Elijah Mitchell (38%) and Jordan Mason (40%) | San Francisco
I am writing this article before Monday Night Football. Christian McCaffrey will play but pay close attention to the touch distribution behind him. Mitchell was ahead of Mason in Week 3 before missing games with an injury. Mason has scored a TD in consecutive weeks. The 49ers offense is good enough that the No. 2 RB can be used in a pinch.
Rico Dowdle | Dallas (3%)
Tank Bigsby | Jacksonville (13%)
Zamir White | Las Vegas (2%)
None of these players have any weekly value. However, if the starters ahead of them went down, they would be huge waiver wire adds.
Chris Rodriguez | Washington (0%)
Dynasty and deep league managers should pay close attention to the Washington backfield. Chris Rodriguez, Washington’s seventh-round draft pick, and an Eric Bieniemy favorite, has seen a recent uptick in usage. On Sunday, with Washington’s offense stuck in the mud, Rodriguez led Washington in rushing yards- albeit with only 31 yards.
Joshua Kelley | Los Angeles Chargers (21%)
Kelley rushed for 75 yards. This is the most he has had since Week 1. This week, he broke off a 49-yard run for a TD. Kelley is a bench stash handcuff in a high-end offense. It is worth noting that Kelley did not do much when Ekeler missed time.
Leonard Fournette | Free Agent (3%)
Fournette has alluded to linking up with a new team. He is a speculative addition that could pay dividends if he lands nicely. Imagine the FAAB money you could have saved adding Kareem Hunt as a free agent instead of after he signed with Cleveland.
SHALLOW LEAGUE ADD: Josh Downs | Indianapolis (36%)
This is a no-brainer addition for any league in any format. I have written about Downs in this column and my Sleepers article nearly every week. This past Sunday, he had a career-high 125 receiving yards. GO GET HIM.
SHALLOW LEAGUE ADD: Rashid Shaheed | New Orleans (37%)
Shaheed did not have much production, but he had a season-high eight targets. I have had him ranked highly in previous weeks. If he is still available in your league, go and aggressively bid on him. He has weekly upside and 17 touches the past two weeks.
Kendrick Bourne | New England (26%)
Bourne was on the short list for No. 1 in my Top 10 Waiver Wire Adds last week. He has scored 19 and 16 PPR points the past two weeks.
Bourne is dominating the Patriots WR targets and had 20 more routes run than any other New England wideout. Bourne started out red hot, then came back down to earth, but is now heating up again. He has a chance to set career marks in every category this season and is currently WR23 on the season.
Jayden Reed | Green Bay (16%)
Reed scored his third TD of the season in Sunday’s loss to Denver. He should see a significant boost if Christian Watson were to miss time with a knee injury. Reed has flashed and seems like he could have a big second half of the season.
Jalin Hyatt | New York Giants (5%)
Hyatt made my sleepers column last week, and he delivered. He hauled in two passed for 75 yards on a season-high five targets. The Giants selected Hyatt in the third round of the NFL Draft, and they are starting to see dividends on their investment. Hyatt has big play potential, which is sorely lacking among Giants skill position players. He is a bench stash for now but could be a bye week fill in if his role expands.
DeMario Douglas | New England Patriots (0%)
Two Patriots WRs in my waiver wire column? Douglas made a significant leap in usage and production on Sunday. He had six targets and four catches- second only to Rhamondre Stevenson among all Patriots, finishing with a 20-percent target share. Douglas also added a 20-yard run. Unless Bill Belichick has nostalgia for the past, Douglas passed JuJu Smith-Schuster on the depth chart with his strong play.
Zay Jones | Jacksonville (24%)
Big play Zay missed another game this past week with a knee injury. If he returns this week, he will be involved in the Jacksonville offense.
Mecole Hardman | Kansas City (16%)
Hardman had a promising return to Kansas City.
Despite playing limited snaps, Hardman made two huge fourth quarter plays. He had a 50-yard punt return and added a first down catch on a crucial third down. Hardman has familiarity with the offense and Patrick Mahomes.
Marvin Mims | Denver (19%)
A speculative lottery ticket hold right now. Mims usage has been frustrating, but if Jerry Jeudy or Courtland Sutton were traded, Mims would be a sought-after waiver wire addition. Yo Sean Payton, how about utilizing Mims? We are all waiting for it.
Michael Wilson | Arizona Cardinals (19%)
Wilson is a bench stash for now but could see a significant bump when Kyler Murray returns to the starting lineup.
Jake Bobo | Seattle (0%)
Deep league managers should monitor Bobo. While Jaxon Smith-Njigba had his breakout game, Bobo led all Seahawks WRs in snaps and was almost equally productive. Bobo finished with four catches for 61 yards and a TD.
Jonathan Mingo | Carolina (6%)
This is purely a speculative addition. Carolina could have self-scouted more work for Mingo during their bye week.
Taysom Hill | New Orleans (9%)
Time is a flat circle. Taysom Hill is inevitable. Hill has a new role: pass catcher. He has 11 catches on 13 targets over the past two weeks. The league’s Swiss Army knife also contributed five carries and found the end zone. The Saints upcoming schedule could feature a smash game or two for Hill if this usage continues. NOTE: HE IS ONLY AN ADD IN LEAGUES WHERE HE IS TE ELIGIBLE. IF HE IS LISTED AS A QB, STAY AWAY.
Michael Mayer | Las Vegas (28%)
Mayer’s production fell dramatically with Brian Hoyer under center.
The rookie had a five catch, 75-yard performance in Week 6, and he is dominating the TE snaps. He is a priority addition for any TE needy manager looking for a long-term solution.
Trey McBride | Arizona (2%)
McBride is overtaking Zach Ertz as the primary TE in Arizona. He had a season-high six targets on Sunday and has outproduced Ertz in consecutive games. McBride is trending up right as Murray is returning.
Cade Otton | Tampa Bay (2%)
Otton set a season-high with 43 receiving yards and equaled his season high in targets. He is a near every snap player and an emergency addition for TE needy managers.
Donald Parham | LA Chargers (2%)
Gerald Everett suffered a quad injury. Parham could see a significant increase in usage. The massive 6-8 Parham has three TD grabs on the season and is a weapon in the red zone.
Tyler Conklin | New York Jets (6%)
The break glass in case of emergency TE option. Conklin has had at least four targets in every game Zach Wilson has started.
Overall Top 10
1- Darrell Henderson RB LA Rams
2- Kendrick Bourne WR New England
3- Devin Singletary RB Houston
4- Jayden Reed WR Green Bay
5- Jalin Hyatt WR New York Giants
6- Emari DeMercado RB Arizona
7- Gardner Minshew QB Indianapolis
8- DeMario Douglas WR New England
9- Latavius Murray RB Buffalo
10- Royce Freeman RB LA Rams