Fantasy Football Friday: Week 9 Locks, Drops, and Scoops

Photo: Dennis Wierzbicki-USA TODAY Sports

Welcome to the fantasy football corner of Prime Time Sports Talk! Weekly evaluations of players on the waiver wire, who to scoop up and who to drop. Also, keeping you updated on those menacing bye weeks and who to lock into your lineup heading into Sunday.

Week 9 Byes: Arizona Cardinals, Cincinnati Bengals, Indianapolis Colts, Jacksonville Jaguars, New York Giants, and the Philadelphia Eagles.

Waiver Wire Targets

Anthony Miller, WR: Allen Robinson is questionable heading into week nine after being inactive last week. Miller benefited from his absence last week, able to find the end zone on one of his three catches. Now acquainted with Trubisky facing a weak Bills secondary, Miller should be able to capitalize and hopefully increase his volume of catches and find the end zone for a second week in a row. Miller has high end weekly plug and play value.

Danny Amendola, WR: Amendola has been on the rise in recent weeks. Nineteen catches over the last three weeks will prove favorable against a forgiving Jets pass defense. Amendola had been disappointing to start the season but recently has increased production to warrant legitimate flex consideration.

Looking Ahead of Week 8

Golden Tate, WR: On bye this week, the Eagles new addition has a unique trait that can’t be argued. Tate ranks as the best yards after catch receiver in the league. His elusiveness and shiftiness in the slot should bode well in an offense that already has a dynamic playmaker on the outside in Alshon Jefferey. Tate should be a featured piece of the Eagles offense for the remainder of the season.

Colts TE Group: Last week, three Colts tight ends caught touchdowns—the only set of three to ever find the end zone in a single game. Andrew Luck was able to shred a poor Raiders defense which helped the tight end production but coming off the bye the Colts will face a Jaguars defense that has not played to the standard set in 2017.

Potential Drops or Trade Pieces

Julio Jones, WR: Jones ranks as the 14th best wide receiver in fantasy this year and has yet to find the end zone. He has serious upside and through the roof No. 1 wide receiver potential if he and Matt Ryan could consistently connect in the red zone. This has not happened so far, making Jones a name up for sale for any fantasy owner out there willing to trade a pair of running backs to bolster your most important position.

Jacksonville Jaguars, D/ST: Enough is enough. This is not the same defense as 2017. They aren’t generating the quarterback pressures and not creating turnovers. The Jaguars defense—once named “Sack-sonville”—only ranks 15th among all defenses in fantasy this season. They are on bye this week, but it is time to let them go for good and stop wasting a roster spot on a sub-par unit.

Lineup Locks

Tom Brady, QB: Brady should be in everyone’s lineup each week, but week nine, in particular, will prove to be a special day of fantasy production. The Green Bay Packers and the New England Patriots will square off in a timeless classic on Sunday night and  Brady should fair well against a depleted Packers defense now bearing the weight of Ha-ha Clinton Dix being traded to the Washington Redskins. Tramon Williams will shift to safety and Belichick’s offense should expose the shifted and thin Packers defense.

Aaron Rodgers, QB: Again, Aaron Rodgers should be a lock week in and week out. But, if you have multiple starting worthy QB’s and are worried about the Patriots defense, fear not. This game has all the makings of a ‘go down in history’ matchup, and Rodgers should benefit from what could become a shootout down the stretch. Rodgers has all his weapons back this week and won’t be hindered by an ill-timed Ty Montgomery fumble, so if he gets the ball last this time, you can expect at least six more points.

Adrian Peterson, RB: Peterson has been on a tear recently. He revived a Redskins offense that suffered a major blow when Darius Guice went down with a season-ending injury. Peterson returned in pro bowl form, flaunting an 11th ranked fantasy showcase. By the end on the day against the Falcons, bet on Peterson cracking the top 10. I expect a huge day running the football against the league’s 15th ranked rush defense that allows 112.7 yards per game.

Weekly Flyer

Tarik Cohen, RB: Chicago’s scat back in clearly second fiddle to thumper, Jordan Howard. But the Bills defense is not anything to write home about. Cohen took advantage of a blown coverage last week in New York, and something of that nature could very well happen again this week.

Howard will take control of early-down workload, but Cohen should see plenty of action. I like his chances to bust open a big play against a defense that should be on the field a majority of the game with Derek Anderson at the helm of their offense. I like Cohen to make an impact play in this game, worthy of a fantasy start. If the Bears can gather a lead early, Cohen’s chances at production will increase exponentially.

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