Win the Wire
The best players to add to your fantasy rosters (based on Football Outsiders' advanced metrics).

Win the Wire: Week 8

Mohamed Sanu
Photo: USA Today Sports Images

by Scott Spratt

Injuries provide the impetus for my favorite shallow- and deep-league waiver wire additions for Week 8. Try to avoid chasing some of the bigger one-week performances when they come in favorable matchups.

Each listed player includes my recommendation for how much of your Free Agent Acquisition Budget (FAAB) you should bid to try to win them, as well as whether I think you should use a No. 1 waiver priority in a format where you would then fall to the back of the line.

Ownership percentages are for ESPN/Yahoo/NFL.com.

Shallow Leagues

Players to Target

Ty Johnson, RB, Detroit Lions
1%/4%/0%

Kerryon Johnson left Sunday's game with a knee injury and is expected to miss time. The report is more optimistic than I expected, and so Ty Johnson's reign as the team's No. 1 back may be similar to what Wayne Gallman would have had behind Saquon Barkley in New York if he hadn't gotten hurt, too. But I'd still be willing to pay up to secure Johnson, who added four catches to his 10 carries in relief of Johnson on Sunday and caught a pass on 7.8% of his college touches at Maryland. He may contribute more as a receiver than Kerryon Johnson did but is still 15 pounds heavier than J.D. McKissic and should serve as the lead runner.

Recommended FAAB bid (% of maximum): 70%
Should you use your No. 1 waiver priority on him: Yes

LeSean McCoy, RB, Kansas City Chiefs
81%/83%/92%

I've been wrong about the Chiefs backfield pretty much all season, but I'll tentatively say that they provided some clarity this weekend. Two weeks removed from a game with zero carries, LeSean McCoy has averaged 12 touches per game over his last two games. His 43% share of the team's offensive snaps is not standout for the position, but it was well ahead of the 33% and 30% of his teammates, the Williamses. And McCoy continues to outproduce Damien Williams with 5.4 yards per carry versus 1.7. Patrick Mahomes' injury will hurt him, but McCoy looks like a flex option.

Recommended FAAB bid (% of maximum): 32%
Should you use your No. 1 waiver priority on him: No

Chase Edmonds, RB, Arizona Cardinals
32%/49%/18%

Chase Edmonds likely broke the heart of a number of David Johnson fantasy owners by taking 29 touches for 150 yards and three touchdowns after Johnson was declared active in Week 7. Johnson is recovering from an ankle injury, and I assume he's close to healthy if the Cardinals were willing to activate him even as an emergency backup. That said, I still think Edmonds is worth a look in shallow leagues, and not just as a Johnson handcuff. Edmonds has built his seasonal production on last week's matchup against a Giants defense that increases run plays by 6% and rushing touchdowns per attempt by 32%, but he still has impressive totals of 51.4% rushing and 25.1% receiving DVOA. Johnson, meanwhile, has contributed much more as a receiver (33.8%) than as a runner (-8.4%). Given the Cardinals' willingness to line Johnson up as a wide receiver, I could see Edmonds gaining enough workload to enter the flex discussion in the second half. But note that Edmonds may not be a slam dunk DFS option if Johnson misses more weeks. The Cardinals' upcoming schedule is brutal for runners. Their next four are at the Saints, who cut run plays by 16%, at the Bucs, who have the No. 1 DVOA run defense, and home and away against the 49ers, who have the No. 2 overall DVOA defense.

Recommended FAAB bid (% of maximum): 28%
Should you use your No. 1 waiver priority on him: No

A.J. Green, WR, Cincinnati Bengals
81%/86%/74%

A.J. Green wasn't able to play in Week 7 and likely won't play prior to next week's trade deadline. But even if he's stuck on the Bengals, he can be a WR2 over the second half of the season.

Recommended FAAB bid (% of maximum): 25%
Should you use your No. 1 waiver priority on him: No

Latavius Murray, RB, New Orleans Saints
67%/75%/74%

Teddy Bridgewater has rightfully earned the bulk of the Saints praise in the absence of Drew Brees and several other key Saints, but Latavius Murray left little doubt as to who is the best fantasy option in the short term. With Alvin Kamara sidelined with what sounds like a high ankle sprain, Murray carried the ball 27 times, caught five passes, and scored two touchdowns against the exceptional Bears defense. Murray looks like an RB1 if Kamara misses any more weeks. His backup Dwayne Washington played just one snap last week.

Recommended FAAB bid (% of maximum): 21%
Should you use your No. 1 waiver priority on him: No

Gerald Everett, TE, Los Angeles Rams
64%/72%/64%

Gerald Everett has not come close to reproducing his seven-catch, 136-yard performance from Week 5, but I'm still starting to believe in him now that he has seen 34 targets over his last four games. His 74% offensive snap share did not dramatically outpace Tyler Higbee at 64% last week, but he saw 10 targets compared to just one for Higbee. Everett's 21.7% wide receiver and tight end target share since Week 4 is seventh at the position. It's almost 5% behind the top six of George Kittle, Mark Andrews, Darren Waller, Zach Ertz, Travis Kelce, and Austin Hooper, but Everett can be a part of that next tier of tight ends with similar value to players like Greg Olsen and Delanie Walker.

Recommended FAAB bid (% of maximum): 15%
Should you use your No. 1 waiver priority on him: No

Wendell Smallwood, RB, Washington Redskins
1%/1%/0%

Already dealing with Chris Thompson's foot injury, the Redskins may be getting more bad news after Adrian Peterson injured his ankle late in Sunday's loss to the 49ers. Smallwood would almost certainly be a short-term fill-in with some challenging defenses in the Vikings and Bills on the schedule, but there aren't enough backs getting double-digit touches to ignore one even in a bad matchup.

Recommended FAAB bid (% of maximum): 14%
Should you use your No. 1 waiver priority on him: No

Derrius Guice, RB, Washington Redskins
29%/30%/22%

The good news for the Redskins backfield is that sophomore back Derrius Guice could return to practice this week and is eligible to return from injured reserve in Week 11. I would expect Guice to take over for Peterson as the team's lead early-down back for those final seven weeks and produce as an RB2/flex player as long as he can stay healthy.

Recommended FAAB bid (% of maximum): 13%
Should you use your No. 1 waiver priority on him: No

Drew Brees, QB, New Orleans Saints
74%/82%/74%

Drew Brees is attempting to return to action this week against the Cardinals. Given that the Saints have their bye next week in Week 9, I think it's more likely he returns in Week 10. But it still makes sense to grab Brees now if you need help at quarterback.

Recommended FAAB bid (% of maximum): 12%
Should you use your No. 1 waiver priority on him: No

DK Metcalf, WR, Seattle Seahawks
65%/65%/61%

I speculated that DK Metcalf might be the biggest beneficiary of Will Dissly's injury, and that looked to be the case on Sunday. His four catches and 53 yards were modest, but he led the team with nine targets. A 22.5% wide receiver and tight end target share was the only thing holding Metcalf back from top-30 receiver status. He already leads the position with 11 end zone targets this season.

Recommended FAAB bid (% of maximum): 12%
Should you use your No. 1 waiver priority on him: No

DeSean Jackson, WR, Philadelphia Eagles
66%/67%/61%

DeSean Jackson was unable to return for the Eagles' Sunday night matchup with the Cowboys in Week 7, and it was never more clear how badly they need him. The Eagles' healthy receivers have all performed poorly this year. Alshon Jeffery has -3.5% DVOA, Nelson Agholor has -28.2% DVOA, Mack Hollins has -31.1% DVOA, and JJ Arcega-Whiteside has -92.8% DVOA. Jackson's Week 1 total of 10 targets may not be far above his average when he gets back.

Recommended FAAB bid (% of maximum): 12%
Should you use your No. 1 waiver priority on him: No

Mohamed Sanu, WR, New England Patriots
49%/56%/51%

The Patriots just made the biggest deal in terms of fantasy implications of the NFL's trade season, acquiring Falcons receiver Mohamed Sanu for a second-round pick. Sanu has been just moderately productive with 313 yards and one touchdown this season with the Falcons, but the Patriots do not have near the level of competition on the outside as the Falcons do with Julio Jones and Calvin Ridley. At least as long as Josh Gordon is out, Sanu seems likely to be the Patriots' first outside choice and second-most targeted receiver in general behind Julian Edelman.

Recommended FAAB bid (% of maximum): 12%
Should you use your No. 1 waiver priority on him: No

Golden Tate, WR, New York Giants
77%/76%/71%

Though they both played nearly every offensive snap for New York on Sunday, Golden Tate out-produced Darius Slayton again with six catches and 80 yards versus just two and 28 for Slayton. Tate had 11 targets, which led the team by six. He seems pretty entrenched as Daniel Jones' favorite wide receiver target. He may suffer a bit when Evan Engram regains his footing, but he should not see a dramatic loss of targets when outside receiver Sterling Shepard returns from his concussion.

Recommended FAAB bid (% of maximum): 7%
Should you use your No. 1 waiver priority on him: No

Devin Singletary, RB, Buffalo Bills
71%/79%/63%

Devin Singletary had meager totals of seven carries and 26 yards in his return from a hamstring injury, playing just 39% of the Bills snaps compared to 54% for Frank Gore. It may take a few weeks, but I expect those snap splits to reverse in time and for Singletary to become an impact fantasy contributor as a receiver. He has upside as a No. 1 back and should be owned in every league.

Recommended FAAB bid (% of maximum): 6%
Should you use your No. 1 waiver priority on him: No

Cam Newton, QB, Carolina Panthers
46%/44%/41%

The news on Cam Newton is a little less promising than it is for Brees. Coming off Carolina's bye, Newton is still not playing this week (not that you'd use him in fantasy if he was, considering he would be playing in San Francisco against the No. 2 DVOA defense). The Panthers likely undersold the original timetable for Newton's recovery from his Lisfranc injury, and with Kyle Allen's solid play, Newton may sit out several more weeks.

Recommended FAAB bid (% of maximum): 4%
Should you use your No. 1 waiver priority on him: No

Corey Davis, WR, Tennessee Titans
44%/41%/40%

Corey Davis probably makes more sense as a deep-league option, but I'll include him in the shallow target list because of his legacy ownership percentages in the 40% range, and because Ryan Tannehill looked more willing to aggressively target his outside receivers in his first start than Marcus Mariota did this season. Tannehill averaged almost a yard more of depth per pass on Sunday than Mariota has this year, and Davis benefited with six catches, 80 yards, and a touchdown.

Recommended FAAB bid (% of maximum): 1%
Should you use your No. 1 waiver priority on him: No

Players to Avoid

Kirk Cousins, QB, Minnesota Vikings
39%/64%/39%

Kirk Cousins isn't a player to outright avoid in shallow formats. Even if his league-leading yards per attempt average and touchdown rate regress back to the 7.1 yards and 5.0% they were last year, he can be a borderline QB1/QB2 in fantasy. But Cousins' three-game streak of 300 or more yards passing and 3.3 touchdowns per game hasn't changed my mind that he is best deployed as a matchup play. His stellar three-game production has come against the Giants and their No. 28 DVOA pass defense, an Eagles defense that boosts pass plays by 17%, and now a Lions pass defense quickly lost its best coverage player in cornerback Darius Slay. I would be concerned about his volume of attempts the next two weeks against the Redskins and Chiefs.

Recommended FAAB bid (% of maximum): 5%
Should you use your No. 1 waiver priority on him: No

Jacoby Brissett, QB, Indianapolis Colts
49%/48%/29%

The names Drew Brees, Kirk Cousins, and Jacoby Brissett don't go together in most people's minds, but I think they are all matchup plays in shallow fantasy formats. Brissett's yardage splits make that pretty obvious. He has failed to throw for 200 yards in half of his matchups this season but now has 250 or more yards against the Falcons, Raiders, and Texans. Brissett has been more consistent with touchdowns, but he did not throw one against a Chiefs team that cuts passing touchdowns by 17%. He has similarly difficult passing matchups against the Broncos and Jaguars in his next four games, but he also faces the Steelers and Dolphins in that stretch and should rank as a QB1 those weeks.

Recommended FAAB bid (% of maximum): 3%
Should you use your No. 1 waiver priority on him: No

Marvin Jones, WR, Detroit Lions
82%/71%/84%

While the Lions' No. 1 receiver Kenny Golladay was held to just one catch for 21 yards, Marvin Jones went off to the tune of 10 catches, 93 yards, and four touchdowns. Jones has now scored four touchdowns in a game two different times in his career. It's an amazing accomplishment, but it doesn't move the needle for me for his fantasy value. Jones has a 24.1% wide receiver and tight end target share this season that is just 34th at the position. Coincidentally, it is just behind Will Fuller, who I think is a similar boom-or-bust player when he is healthy. Both players are probably best used as DFS tournament options rather than weekly options in head-to-head formats.

Recommended FAAB bid (% of maximum): 2%
Should you use your No. 1 waiver priority on him: No

Danny Amendola, WR, Detroit Lions
7%/6%/4%

He didn't score any touchdowns, but Danny Amendola had a nice day for the Lions as well, with eight catches and 105 yards. He's very usable in deeper formats, but I think his shallow-worthy day was driven by the Vikings matchup. Their excellent defense is designed to stop primary outside receivers. Against other receivers, they have just the No. 21 DVOA defense.

Recommended FAAB bid (% of maximum): 1%
Should you use your No. 1 waiver priority on him: No

Eric Ebron, TE, Indianapolis Colts
39%/52%/52%

Eric Ebron put up a very 2018 line for him with four catches, 70 yards, and a touchdown on Sunday, but that doesn't mean he has rediscovered his fantasy magic from last season. Ebron played just 42% of the Colts' offensive snaps compared to 76% for his tight end teammate Jack Doyle. Meanwhile, Ebron has just three end zone targets all season and a 15.7% wide receiver and tight end target share that makes him a middle-tier TE2 in fantasy.

Recommended FAAB bid (% of maximum): 1%
Should you use your No. 1 waiver priority on him: No

Benny Snell, RB, Pittsburgh Steelers
6%/6%/1%

With the Steelers coming off their bye and Jaylen Samuels likely still a few games away from returning from his knee surgery, fantasy owners may be tempted to snag Benny Snell in shallow leagues coming off his 17-carry, 75-yard performance in Week 6. I wouldn't spend a lot of FAAB to do that. Snell saw most of his work late in that game after James Conner left with a quad injury. Conner looks fully healthy this week and should dominate the Steelers' backfield touches as usual. Meanwhile, Snell doesn't share the upside typical of Steelers' backup runners. He caught a pass on just 3.8% of his college touches and would have to rely on touchdowns to produce fantasy value even in an expanded role.

Recommended FAAB bid (% of maximum): 1%
Should you use your No. 1 waiver priority on him: No

Players You Can Drop

Will Fuller, WR, Houston Texans
Will Dissly, TE, Seattle Seahawks
Ronald Jones, RB, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
O.J. Howard, TE, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Wayne Gallman, RB, New York Giants
Daniel Jones, QB, New York Giants
Byron Pringle, WR, Kansas City Chiefs
Baker Mayfield, QB, Cleveland Browns
Darrel Williams, RB, Kansas City Chiefs
Mecole Hardman, WR, Kansas City Chiefs
Geronimo Allison, WR, Green Bay Packers
Justin Jackson, RB, Los Angeles Chargers
JJ Arcega-Whiteside, WR, Philadelphia Eagles
Kalen Ballage, RB, Miami Dolphins
Antonio Brown, WR, Free Agent
Kyle Rudolph, TE, Minnesota Vikings
Darwin Thompson, RB, Kansas City Chiefs
Ben Roethlisberger, QB, Pittsburgh Steelers
Dion Lewis, RB, Tennessee Titans
Mike Davis, RB, Chicago Bears
DaeSean Hamilton, WR, Denver Broncos

Deep Leagues

Players to Target

Allen Lazard, WR, Green Bay Packers
16%/35%/6%

With Davante Adams out again with his turf toe, no Packers receiver stood out in terms of target share. Geronimo Allison paced the group with just five targets. However, with injuries limiting typical No. 2 option Marquez Valdes-Scantling to just 33% of the team's offensive snaps, Allen Lazard actually led the team with 85% of snaps played. In a small sample from the last two weeks, Lazard has been terrific, producing a 42.0% DVOA that is much better than Valdes-Scantling's 0.5% and Allison's -26.5%. Given that Aaron Rodgers lobbied for an increase in Lazard's playing time, I think there's a chance he emerges as the team's second receiver behind Adams.

Recommended FAAB bid (% of maximum): 28%
Should you use your No. 1 waiver priority on him: No

Darrell Henderson, RB, Los Angeles Rams
26%/31%/32%

With Todd Gurley and Malcolm Brown now seemingly trading off injured weeks, Rams rookie Darrell Henderson saw his greatest volume of work so far this season with 11 carries and a catch in Week 7. The game script in a blowout of the Falcons helped buoy that volume, but Henderson may continue to see work as a measure to keep Gurley healthy for a possible playoff run. At the very least, he should be a contributor whenever Gurley or Brown misses a game.

Recommended FAAB bid (% of maximum): 22%
Should you use your No. 1 waiver priority on him: No

Mark Walton, RB, Miami Dolphins
4%/20%/1%

After already passing sophomore back Kalen Ballage in playing time over the previous two weeks, Dolphins back Mark Walton set the pace for the team's snap percentage in Week 7, playing 52% of offensive snaps compared to just 41% for Kenyan Drake. My best guess is that reduced Drake workload was an effort to keep him healthy for a possible trade, and that is the best avenue to Walton's potential fantasy success. As such, you should definitely own Walton at least until next Tuesday when the deadline passes.

Recommended FAAB bid (% of maximum): 20%
Should you use your No. 1 waiver priority on him: No

DeVante Parker, WR, Miami Dolphins
9%/14%/1%

DeVante Parker is the other obvious Dolphins trade candidate, but unlike Drake, he isn't much owned. I'd pick him up in case he were traded to a more favorable situation for his fantasy value. The Patriots are likely out, but perhaps the 49ers could use a new No. 1 receiver? (Editor's note: No, they could not.)

Recommended FAAB bid (% of maximum): 7%
Should you use your No. 1 waiver priority on him: No

Preston Williams, WR, Miami Dolphins
8%/12%/3%

Meanwhile, I've been touting Dolphins rookie Preston Williams on his own merits for weeks at this point. But his value would skyrocket if Parker were dealt. Coming off another eight-target day, Williams is up to a 27.8% wide receiver and tight end target share this season that is 21st at the position. The Dolphins passing attack seems much more capable with Ryan Fitzpatrick under center. Williams could be a real flex option over the second half of the season.

Recommended FAAB bid (% of maximum): 6%
Should you use your No. 1 waiver priority on him: No

Ricky Seals-Jones, TE, Cleveland Browns
3%/3%/1%

Ricky Seals-Jones couldn't carry the momentum of his 47-yard, one-touchdown performance in Week 6 into Week 7 because of a Browns bye week, but that may afford you an opportunity to snag him on the cheap in your deeper formats. Seals-Jones leapt by tight end teammate Demetrius Harris with 47 offensive snaps versus just 19 for Harris in Week 6. And Seals-Jones has been one of the positional leaders in DVOA this season.

Recommended FAAB bid (% of maximum): 6%
Should you use your No. 1 waiver priority on him: No

Kenny Stills, WR, Houston Texans
15%/14%/2%

With less than a full game with Kenny Stills back in action, the Texans lost their other deep threat in Will Fuller to a hamstring injury that will likely sideline him for several weeks. That's obviously bad news for the Texans, but it's good news for fantasy owners. When Stills and Fuller played together in September, they sabotaged each other's fantasy potential. Without Stills, Fuller saw his wide receiver and tight end target share spike from 21.7% to 36.8%. Stills is starting from a smaller share at 13.2% and won't have the Falcons matchup to help score three touchdowns, but he could be a temporary top 30 receiver with Fuller out.

Recommended FAAB bid (% of maximum): 6%
Should you use your No. 1 waiver priority on him: No

Bisi Johnson, WR, Minnesota Vikings
0%/0%/0%

Adam Thielen injured his hamstring crashing into the wall through the end zone on an excellent touchdown catch in Week 7, and he will probably miss the Vikings' game on the short week this Thursday night. Against the Redskins, the Vikings will likely lean heavily on running back Dalvin Cook, but if you need a receiver in a deeper format, you can consider rookie Bisi Johnson. He played 71% of the Vikings' offensive snaps last week in relief of Thielen compared to just 14% for Laquon Treadwell.

Recommended FAAB bid (% of maximum): 6%
Should you use your No. 1 waiver priority on him: No

Ryan Tannehill, QB, Tennessee Titans
2%/5%/0%

Ryan Tannehill was excellent in his Titans debut on Sunday, completing 23 of 29 passes for 312 yards, two touchdowns, and one interception. That was good for a 9.0% DVOA that is far superior to Marcus Mariota's rate of -19.9% on the season. I wouldn't get carried away with just the one performance, especially since it came against the Chargers' No. 27-ranked pass defense. But at the very least it secured Tannehill a leash to start for a few more games with upside as a fantasy option.

Recommended FAAB bid (% of maximum): 5%
Should you use your No. 1 waiver priority on him: No

Dallas Goedert, TE, Philadelphia Eagles
21%/13%/5%

Dallas Goedert out-produced his tight end teammate Zach Ertz with 69 catches and a touchdown on Sunday night, but that isn't the reason to consider him in fantasy. Ertz remains one of the most heavily targeted tight ends in football, but Goedert is seeing the field more and more in two-tight end sets, likely because of the poor efficiencies of the Eagles' wide receivers. Goedert has 12 targets the last two games and could continue to see as many as six per game even after DeSean Jackson returns to the lineup.

Recommended FAAB bid (% of maximum): 3%
Should you use your No. 1 waiver priority on him: No

Phillip Dorsett, WR, New England Patriots
34%/44%/26%

Phillip Dorsett got to enjoy one game as the Patriots' No. 1 outside receiver. He played 88% of the team's offensive snaps with Josh Gordon sidelined with ankle and knee injuries. But Gordon could be back this week, and the Patriots traded for Mohamed Sanu. That will make it tough for Dorsett to continue to be productive, and his four touchdowns likely weren't sustainable in any case with just two end zone targets this season. It's a lot of reasons to consider Dorsett a stay-away, but I'll still recommend him in deep formats because of his efficiency. With a 27.3% DVOA, Dorsett has produced like an excellent starter. I'm not sure it's a given that he loses playing time to Gordon and Sanu.

Recommended FAAB bid (% of maximum): 2%
Should you use your No. 1 waiver priority on him: No

Jakobi Meyers, WR, New England Patriots
3%/6%/1%

Rookie Jakobi Meyers almost certainly will losing playing time to Gordon and Sanu, but he has been just as effective as Dorsett with a 27.7% DVOA this season and has the greater upside as a likely slot handcuff to Julian Edelman.

Recommended FAAB bid (% of maximum): 2%
Should you use your No. 1 waiver priority on him: No

N'Keal Harry, WR, New England Patriots
9%/12%/7%

Meanwhile, first-round Patriots rookie receiver N'Keal Harry has returned to practice and is eligible to return from injured reserve as soon as Week 9. I wouldn't expect him to contribute in fantasy this season, but there is enough uncertainty with the Patriots receiving group that I'd consider holding him for a few weeks in deeper formats to see how things shake out.

Recommended FAAB bid (% of maximum): 2%
Should you use your No. 1 waiver priority on him: No

Ben Watson, TE, New England Patriots
3%/5%/11%

And just two weeks after being released and a week after being re-signed, ageless tight end Ben Watson saw five targets in his first action of the season. I doubt he maintains that volume with the plethora of other Patriots targets returning, but he does seem to be Tom Brady's preferred choice at the position and could be a back-end TE2 if he can score some touchdowns.

Recommended FAAB bid (% of maximum): 2%
Should you use your No. 1 waiver priority on him: No

Demaryius Thomas, WR, New York Jets
6%/7%/1%

Demaryius Thomas couldn't make much of his team-leading nine targets against the No. 2 DVOA Patriots pass defense. He caught just three passes for 42 yards. But the Jets have now cleared their two Patriots matchups this season, and Thomas is up to 22 targets the last three weeks. With Sam Darnold back healthy, Thomas should be a WR3 in his better matchups.

Recommended FAAB bid (% of maximum): 2%
Should you use your No. 1 waiver priority on him: No

Chris Herndon, TE, New York Jets
20%/29%/8%

Second-year tight end Chris Herndon is probably the Jets' most talented receiving option. He has cleared his PED suspension that held him out of the first five weeks. And I expect him to clear his hamstring injury in time to play in Week 8.

Recommended FAAB bid (% of maximum): 2%
Should you use your No. 1 waiver priority on him: No

J.D. McKissic, RB, Detroit Lions
1%/1%/0%

J.D. McKissic is a specialized player and as such may not see much of a change in his workload with early-down back Kerryon Johnson set to miss time with a knee injury. But McKissic has already seen at least six touches in three straight games. Even a modest increase will put him on the radars of deep-league players, especially in PPR formats.

Recommended FAAB bid (% of maximum): 2%
Should you use your No. 1 waiver priority on him: No

A.J. Brown, WR, Tennessee Titans
11%/17%/5%

I expect Corey Davis to remain Tannehill's top receiving option, but rookie A.J. Brown's stock is increasing, as well. He caught six of his eight targets on Sunday for 64 yards and saw the field for 61% of the team's offensive snaps compared to just 48% for Adam Humphies.

Recommended FAAB bid (% of maximum): 2%
Should you use your No. 1 waiver priority on him: No

Matt Schaub, QB, Atlanta Falcons
0%/0%/0%

Matt Ryan may miss the Falcons' Week 8 game against the Seahawks with an ankle injury. If you need an emergency fantasy starter at quarterback, Matt Schaub may be your best bet. Schaub boasts strong career numbers with a 64% completion rate and 7.6 yards per attempt. And he will face the Seahawks' neutral pass defense at home in Atlanta this week.

Recommended FAAB bid (% of maximum): 2%
Should you use your No. 1 waiver priority on him: No

Brian Hill, RB, Atlanta Falcons
0%/0%/0%

A second Falcons running back becomes much less appealing if Ryan misses this game, but Ito Smith's second concussion of the season opens the door for either Brian Hill or Qadree Ollison to get that work. Both players have the skill set to fit that bill. Hill seems like the more likely choice given that he was active over Ollison last week.

Recommended FAAB bid (% of maximum): 2%
Should you use your No. 1 waiver priority on him: No

Qadree Ollison, RB, Atlanta Falcons
0%/0%/0%

That said, Ollison may have more upside for the rest of the season. A fifth-round rookie, Ollison caught a pass on 8.6% of his career touches for Pittsburgh, double the rate of current fantasy star James Conner.

Recommended FAAB bid (% of maximum): 2%
Should you use your No. 1 waiver priority on him: No

Boston Scott, RB, Philadelphia Eagles
0%/0%/0%

More likely to remain a role player than either Hill or Ollison, the Eagles' Boston Scott can nevertheless do an effective Darren Sproles impression with Sproles continuing to miss time with his quad injury. Scott is small like Sproles at just 5-foot-6 and 203 pounds, and he caught a pass on 10.0% of his college touches. He had eight touches in Week 7 and should continue to see work with Corey Clement now on injured reserve.

Recommended FAAB bid (% of maximum): 2%
Should you use your No. 1 waiver priority on him: No

Duke Williams, WR, Buffalo Bills
1%/4%/1%

Duke Williams caught just one pass for 23 yards in his second career start, but he played 54% of the Bills offensive snaps compared to just 55% for Cole Beasley. He's locked in as the team's No. 2 outside receiver, and that may have more value on the Bills than you would expect. At 6-foot-5 and 225 pounds, Williams has touchdown upside than neither the short Beasley nor John Brown share.

Recommended FAAB bid (% of maximum): 1%
Should you use your No. 1 waiver priority on him: No

Zay Jones, WR, Oakland Raiders
2%/4%/1%

The man the Bills traded to make room for Williams, Zay Jones, was inactive for the Raiders in Week 7. That really surprised me given their myriad wide receiver injuries, but perhaps Jones was not ready after just being traded to his new team over the previous week's bye? I'm willing to hold Jones for one more week in deeper formats, but if he doesn't play in Week 8, then you can cut him loose.

Recommended FAAB bid (% of maximum): 1%
Should you use your No. 1 waiver priority on him: No

Jonnu Smith, TE, Tennessee Titans
0%/0%/0%

Jonnu Smith would only have value if Delanie Walker missed time, but Walker did leave Sunday's game with an ankle injury and is considered day-to-day. The Titans' Week 8 opponent, the Buccaneers, have been No. 1 defending the run and receiving backs but just 20th in DVOA against tight ends (subscription required).

Recommended FAAB bid (% of maximum): 1%
Should you use your No. 1 waiver priority on him: No

Players to Avoid

Matt Moore, QB, Kansas City Chiefs
0%/1%/0%

Patrick Mahomes dislocated his knee in last Thursday's game against the Broncos, and that will likely give Matt Moore three weeks to start in his place. I understand the inclination to roll with Moore in your deeper formats. I have Tyreek Hill third, Mecole Hardman fifth, Sammy Watkins 18th, and Demarcus Robinson 33rd among wide receivers in projected yards per catchable target. They should buoy Moore's numbers to a certain extent. But Moore is obviously not the same passer that Mahomes is. I estimate his true talent completion rate is 4% less and his true talent yards per attempt is 1.9 yards less than Mahomes, and he faces a difficult slate of games in the short term against top-12 DVOA pass defenses in the Packers, Vikings, and Titans. If any of those starts go poorly, the Chiefs may even switch to Chad Henne, who is eligible to return from injured reserve in Week 9. If you need an emergency quarterback starter, go with Schaub this week.

Recommended FAAB bid (% of maximum): 1%
Should you use your No. 1 waiver priority on him: No

Nick Foles, QB, Jacksonville Jaguars
2%/4%/1%

Jaguars quarterback Nick Foles has a much better chance of helping your fantasy teams over the rest of 2019, but I still wouldn't pay a lot of FAAB to get him. I continue to be impressed with rookie Gardner Minshew, whose 7.4% DVOA comfortably leads all rookie passers. I expect Minshew to keep this job when Foles returns from injured reserve in Week 11.

Recommended FAAB bid (% of maximum): 1%
Should you use your No. 1 waiver priority on him: No

Alex Erickson, WR, Cincinnati Bengals
0%/2%/0%

Alex Erickson had an out-of-nowhere fantasy day with eight catches and 137 yards on 14 targets on Sunday. He played 94% of the Bengals' offensive snaps, so he's clearly the third of the Bengals' three receiver sets alongside Tyler Boyd and Auden Tate. But Erickson played 80% of the team's snaps in Week 6, as well, and had just modest totals of four catches and 47 yards. This one performance against a Jaguars defense that is stronger against No. 2 receivers (No. 5 DVOA) than other receivers (No. 23) does not change my perception of his value. Stick with Boyd and Tate for fantasy.

Recommended FAAB bid (% of maximum): 1%
Should you use your No. 1 waiver priority on him: No

Zach Pascal, WR, Indianapolis Colts
0%/1%/0%

The Colts' Zach Pascal was even more productive, turning his seven targets into 106 yards and two touchdowns. Pascal was the Colts' second receiver for the week behind T.Y. Hilton, but that manifested in just 47% of the offensive snaps. That total could fall further when Parris Campbell makes it back, and even Pascal's 16.4% wide receiver and target share since Week 3 is just 64th at the position.

Recommended FAAB bid (% of maximum): 1%
Should you use your No. 1 waiver priority on him: No

Jaron Brown, WR, Seattle Seahawks
4%/1%/0%

Jaron Brown dropped a sure touchdown on Sunday on what was his third end zone target in just three weeks. With Will Dissly out for the year, that may tempt you to grab Brown in your deeper formats. But Brown's uptick in end zone work hardly stands out on a Seahawks team with a lot of those opportunities the last two weeks. In that time, Tyler Locket also has three, DK Metcalf has two, and David Moore and Luke Willson each have one. Meanwhile, Brown played just 60% of the team's offensive snaps.

Recommended FAAB bid (% of maximum): 1%
Should you use your No. 1 waiver priority on him: No

Jacob Hollister, TE, Seattle Seahawks
0%/0%/0%

Jacob Hollister saw six targets in the Seahawks' first game without Will Dissly, five more than presumptive replacement Luke Willson. But Hollister and Willson played much more similar roles in the offense, playing 51% and 47% of the team's offensive snaps, respectively. Without Dissly's talent and seemingly mired in a time share, Hollister will not have much fantasy value.

Recommended FAAB bid (% of maximum): 1%
Should you use your No. 1 waiver priority on him: No

Players You Can Drop

Marquise Goodwin, WR, San Francisco 49ers
Ito Smith, RB, Atlanta Falcons
Jon Hilliman, RB, New York Giants
Devin Smith, WR, Dallas Cowboys
Randall Cobb, WR, Dallas Cowboys
KeeSean Johnson, WR, Arizona Cardinals
Robert Foster, WR, Buffalo Bills
Andy Dalton, QB, Cincinnati Bengals
Elijhaa Penny, RB, New York Giants
Rashard Higgins, WR, Cleveland Browns
Donte Moncrief, WR, Pittsburgh Steelers
Ryan Switzer, WR, Pittsburgh Steelers
Mike Gesicki, TE, Miami Dolphins
Devin Funchess, WR, Indianapolis Colts
Albert Wilson, WR, Miami Dolphins
Andy Isabella, WR, Arizona Cardinals

Comments

5 comments, Last at 24 Oct 2019, 3:56pm

1 What is the basis for this article?

Are these "Win the Wire" articles primarily based on FO data, or are they Scott Spratt's opinions with a sprinkling of FO data when it supports the case for or against a player?

I don't mean this question to sound negative or disrespectful, as I appreciate FO trying to diversify content. I just see a lot of "I think this about this guy" comments that don't appear to be rooted in FO data, and I can get that kind of speculation on lots of other websites.

I can't speak for other FO readers, but I would personally prefer your fantasy-football advice to emphasize DVOA and DYAR. For example, I don't need anyone to tell me that Ty Johnson is a good pickup now that Kerryon is injured, but it's valuable for you to tell me what FO's unique metrics have to say about his performance to date and his upcoming opponents. That's the kind of analysis that led me to FO more than 15 years ago.

Thank you for your efforts!

2 Re: Approach

These waiver recommendations are my opinions of player value, which I form with a data-driven approach.  DVOA and DYAR are two of the statistics I use to form those opinions--I definitely don't cherry pick DVOA totals simply to reinforce preexisting opinions--but they are two of many because they answer a different question than fantasy football is asking.  DVOA and DYAR estimate player effectiveness, but a player also needs opportunities to produce in fantasy.  Effectiveness drives future opportunities to a certain extent, but so too do things like their current usage, regression, injuries, and past and future defensive opponents.

3 Thanks, that helps me…

In reply to by Scott Spratt

Thanks, that helps me understand where you're coming from.

I agree that effectiveness is only part of the story, but I'd still encourage that it be the basis for analysis. FO articles are most valuable when they add perspective that can't be found anywhere else, and I feel like it's a mistake to stray from that principle.

For example, anyone can tell me that Chase Edmonds is worth a roster spot, but only FO can tell me that his next four games are against some of the best run defenses in terms of DVOA, or that the Cardinals would be smart to run with Edmonds and put Johnson out wide. If similar DVOA figures had been given for Ty Johnson, I'd have a better idea as to which I should prioritize in waivers based on FO metrics.

Rather than a long list of players, I think it would be great if you focused on a handful of popular waiver-wire players every week, breaking down their FO stats and upcoming opponents and then giving your personal recommendation when other factors such as opportunity are considered. Throw in a few guys who jump out at you based on effectiveness in limited opportunities, and you'd have a waiver-wire article that really stands apart from other websites.

Again, this is just the opinion of one reader. Cheers!

4 Like these articles a lot

This is a welcome addition to the site. Obviously we know to pick up Chase Edmonds, but he still has to be covered, doesn't he? And some of the lesser names are valuable to cover too, depending on how deep one's league is, and whether you just need a bye-week filler or something similar. Zach Pascal, for instance. You might not have noticed his big game. If you did, you want to know if that was likely a one-week thing, or evidence of a larger role, and if so whether it's because of a guy going down, or if a guy coming back will reduce his role.

Good stuff.

5 Re: approach

Thanks for the feedback, from both of you.  I debated preseason whether it made more sense to be more focused with more in-depth analysis of the featured players or be comprehensive with more of a surface-level explanation of why I'm making the recommendations I'm making.  I obviously opted for the latter, but my hope is that this is just the beginning of what will become a full offering of fantasy work on Football Outsiders that will hopefully meet everyone's needs.  So keep the feedback coming.