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Week 9 working the waiver wire: All the Fells

Week 9 working the waiver wire: All the Fells
Photo via:HoustonTexans/Twitter

Here we go, it's already Week 9 so let's see which free agents are still available. Keep in mind the owner % mentioned is for 10-team standard ESPN PPR leagues. Some of these players below are good for the short-term, while others have more long-term value. You have to make the call on what your team needs. Immediate help to start this week, or a player to stash on your bench and hope he breaks out. Let's get started.

QB

Gardner Minshew: This dude had another big game throwing for 3TDs against the Jets, and he quietly gets his owners some rushing yards every week too. He plays a heavily banged up Texans defense this week, so he should go off again. This is probably your last chance to add him. He's owned in 52% of ESPN standard 10-team leagues.

Jimmy Garoppolo: He more available than you would think. He's only rostered in 32% of leagues, and he has a tasty matchup against the Cardinals this week.

Derek Carr: His defense is awful, so he'll have to throw the ball a ton. Carr had a good game against Houston and having Tyrell Williams certainly helps. Also, he faces the Lions, Chargers, Bengals, and Jets over the next 4 weeks. You can add him in almost 80% of leagues.



RB

Jaylen Samuels: It looks like Samuels is in line for a few starts after James Conner was injured against the Dolphins. Benny Snell was also hurt this week against Miami, so you should be able to start Samuels against Indy this week. Samuels is a good productive player when he gets touches, so his success will be tied to Conner's health or lack there of.

Mark Walton: Kalen Ballage just isn't' very good, and Kenyon Drake is out of the picture. You still have to deal with a bad Miami offense, but there's not a ton of good options at RB on the waiver wire. Walton is owned in less than 20% of leagues.

Derrius Guice: Guice could really help you down the stretch if he's able to return from injury in week 11. Trent Williams is coming back to the Redskins, so that will definitely help the running game. Stash him. He's owned in less than 30% of standard leagues.

Darrell Henderson: He has a bye this week, but he had 13 touches against the Bengals. If you're desperate, he might be able to help you when the fantasy playoffs arrive. He's widely available and Gurley may fall apart down the stretch.

WR

Kenny Stills: He didn't have the big game I was hoping for against Oakland, but he was on the field a ton and should continue to get a lot of opportunities. The Jags are allowing the 8th most yards per game to WR's, so you could do worse this week. He's available in 45% of leagues and that might increase after his underwhelming performance on Sunday.

DeSean Jackson: Jackson will return to practice this week according to reports, but it looks like he's going to just have to manage the pain. The Eagles need some juice in their passing game badly, so if he's on the field, I expect him to get targeted downfield. I can't believe he's still owned in 62% of leagues, but that shows you owners aren't ready to give up on him.

Danny Amendola: We've seen this movie before, Stafford loves throwing to slot WRs. Golden Tate anyone? If the Lions continue to throw this much, Amendola with have low-end flex value in PPR leagues. He's out there in 90% of leagues.

TE

Darren Fells: He's been a huge addition for the Texans, and Watson clearly loves throwing to him. Hell, Watson will even throw him the ball blindly as we saw against the Raiders. Add Fells now if you need a TE. He's the best guy to get this week. He's rostered in less than 12% of leagues.

Jonnu Smith: He recorded 78 yards and a TD against the Bucs, so don't be afraid to use him if Delanie Walker remains sidelined. He's a great guy to pair with Walker if you're getting killed at TE and you have the roster space.

Defense

The Cowboys and Eagles have good matchups this week facing the Giants and Bears respectively. The Cowboys are coming off a bye, so they might have been dropped.

If you have any questions, feel free to hit me up on Twitter. Be sure to check out my show MoneyLine with Jerry Bo on ESPN 97.5FM. We're on every Sunday morning from 10-noon, and we'll talk a lot of fantasy football and NFL gambling getting you ready for kickoff every Sunday.

@JoshJordan975

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Allen had high praise for Diggs. Photo by Timothy T Ludwig/Getty Images.

Impersonal as it might seem to have their dynamic on-field relationship end with an exchange of phone texts, Bills quarterback Josh Allen made it clear on Thursday how much receiver Stefon Diggs meant to him during their four seasons together in Buffalo.

Allen made no mention of Diggs’ mercurial temperament or the occasional sideline flare-ups by expressing only praise in his first opportunity to discuss his now-former teammate being traded to the Houston Texans earlier this month.

“Just thanking him for everything that he did for me, and (I’ll) always have a spot in my heart for him. I’ll always love that guy like a brother. And I wish him nothing but the best,” Allen said, in disclosing what he texted to Diggs. “My lasting memory of Stef will be the receiver that helped me become the quarterback that I am today.”

Brought together in March 2020, when Buffalo gave up a first-round draft pick to acquire Diggs in a trade with Minnesota, the duo went on to re-write many of Buffalo's single-season passing and scoring records, and lead the team to four straight AFC East titles.

Diggs, now 30, also brought an inescapable sense of drama with him in raising questions about his commitment to the Bills and whether his tight relationship with Allen had soured.

A day before being traded, Diggs posted a message, “You sure?” on the social media platform X in response to someone suggesting he wasn’t essential to Allen’s success.

Whatever hard feelings, if any, lingered as Buffalo opened its voluntary workout sessions this week were not apparent from Allen or coach Sean McDermott, who also addressed reporters for the first time since Diggs was traded.

“Stef’s a great player, really enjoyed our time together. Won a lot of games and he was a huge factor in winning those games. We’ll miss him,” McDermott said. “You never replace a player like Stef Diggs, and we wish him well.”

Allen turned his focus to the future and a Bills team that spent much of the offseason retooling an aging and expensive roster.

Aside from trading Diggs, salary cap restrictions led to Buffalo cutting respected center Mitch Morse, the breakup of a veteran secondary that had been together since 2017, and the team unable to afford re-signing No. 2 receiver Gabe Davis.

“I don’t think it’s a wrong thing or a bad thing to get younger,” said Allen, entering his seventh NFL season. “I think it’s an opportunity for myself to grow as a leader. And to bring along some of these young guys and new guys that we’ve brought in to our team. And that’s an opportunity, frankly, that I’m very excited about."

Despite the departures, the Bills offense is not exactly lacking even though general manager Brandon Beane is expected to target selecting a receiver with his first pick — currently 28th overall — in the draft next week.

Receiver Khalil Shakir enters his third year and tight end Dalton Kincaid enter his second following promising seasons. Buffalo also added veteran experience in signing free agent receiver Curtis Samuel and Mack Hollins.

While Beane acknowledged the Bills lack a true No. 1 receiver, he noted there’s less urgency to fill that spot now than in 2020 because of how much the offense has developed under Allen.

“Now that Josh has ascended to the player he is, is that a requirement? I don’t think so,” Beane said.

Diggs’ role also began diminishing in the second half of last season, which coincided with Joe Brady replacing Ken Dorsey as offensive coordinator. Brady placed an emphasis on adding balance to a pass-heavy attack and getting more receivers involved, which led to an uptick in production for Shakir and Kincaid.

While Diggs’ numbers dropped, Buffalo’s win total increased.

With the Bills at 6-6, Diggs ranked third in the NFL with 83 catches, seventh with 969 yards and tied for third with eight TDs receiving. Buffalo then closed the season with five straight wins in which Diggs combined for 24 catches for 214 yards and no scores.

”(Diggs) meant a lot. You look at the statistics, they don’t lie,” Allen said, in referring to Diggs topping 100 catches and 1,000 yards in each of his four seasons in Buffalo. “I don’t get paid to make changes on the team. I get paid to be the best quarterback that I can be and try to lead the guys on this team.”

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