31 October 2023 • by Bryan Oldham
The trade deadline could change a lot of things in this article, or it could have 0 impact on your fantasy squad! Could we be looking at another starting tight end on the wire? Boom/Bust wide receivers are so hot right now.
This NFL season has been weird, so let’s lean into it. Welcome to our Waiver Wire targets for Week 9 of the 2023 NFL season and Happy Halloween!
We should caveat here: while these guys are often listed as viable pickups for multiple weeks, you can also view our QB recommendations as synonymous with streaming recommendations.
What a debut from Levis. I’m opening with the 2nd round pick here because I said on our Week 8 livestream that Levis wouldn’t do anything (even suggested DeAndre Hopkins could be droppable) and I was wrong. So, so wrong. Levis blasted Atlanta for 238 yards and 4 touchdowns in Week 8, and it looks like as long as Tannehill is sidelined, Levis is the guy in Nashville. Temper expectations, but hope for continued success with Pittsburgh and Tampa Bay lined up in Weeks 9 and 10.
Time is a flat circle. We’ll keep mentioning Sam Howell until he’s rostered and started each week, apparently. 4 TDs against Philly is eye-popping in itself, and combined with almost 400 passing yards, Howell keeps showing why Ron Rivera and company wanted to stick with him this year. Howell also started trusting his playmakers (read: Jahan Dotson) and it paid off. New England, Seattle, and the New York Giants are on tap for Howell, and could pose some challenges to him, but it’s hard to turn your nose up at the hot hand..
With his first NFL win under his belt, Bryce Young finally started to look the part of the 1st overall pick last week. He threw for 235 and 1 against the Texans and didn’t turn the ball over, which is a promising development following Carolina’s bye week. Young gets Indy and Chicago over the next two weeks, which present some tasty matchups for him to start flexing his pedigree.
As of writing this, Dobbs has been traded to the Vikings following Kirk Cousins’ season-ending Achilles tear. Dobbs proved he could keep the Cardinals in games, and the Vikings are a better all-around team. Dobbs is going to keep K.J. Osborn, Jordan Addison, and T.J. Hockenson afloat for the rest of the season.
It was reported ahead of the Week 8 games that Hubbard had earned a larger role in the Carolina offense. While his 15 carries didn’t amount to much, he outpaced Miles Sanders in every measurable way against the Texans. He may not be a league winner, but Hubbard could be the guy who fills gaps for you and prevents the ship from capsizing.
On the off-chance the Titans get an offer they can’t refuse for Derrick Henry, you’re looking at the new RB1 in Tennessee. If not, Spears’ role in the passing game has been serviceable enough to make him a plug-and-play option as an emergency RB or Flex.
Take a deep breath, James Cook managers. The Bills signed Fournette to a one-year deal on Monday, and he’ll likely take the goal-line work that Latavius Murray has squandered so far. Impact is likely a few weeks off, and he could purely be a goal line back there as an insurance policy for James Cook, but this backfield continues to be an enigma. Lenny is a wait-and see grab, but he’s interesting and a fresh-legged running back is never a bad thing to have in Week 9..
Mingo is quietly seeing a solid target share in the Carolina offense. While that doesn’t always mean much unless you’re Adam Theilen, Mingo has had only one game with less than 5 targets, and he’s seeing his yardage tick up as the season progresses. Carolina brought Mingo in to be the future at the position, and we could start to see his bond with Bryce Young flourish in the second half of the season.
3 catches: that’s all it took for Shaheed to reach 153 yards in Week 8. While he’s only posted 3 games with more than 80 yards, Shaheed is a boom/bust option that could win you a week on a few big plays. Lean into the volatility and ride the storm with a guy like Shaheed, who has to see more work after making huge plays on such little opportunity.
4 for 83 is a nice stat line. As Green Bay’s offense seems to be going backwards as far as development, Reed continues to be a constant in the system. Christian Watson is always hurt, and Luke Musgrave has been banged up as well. If Romeo Doubs continues to see the heaviest coverage, Reed has a massive opportunity to leapfrog his way to the top of the depth chart.
Douglas steps into the de-facto WR1 role for New England. While it may not be worth much, Douglas is a shifty slot guy who can be a safety valve for Mac Jones. Given Juju’s fall from grace and the awful news that Kendrick Bourne tore his ACL, Double-D is going to get opportunities in this offense.
Another week, another breakout. McBride exploded for 10 catches, 95 yards, and a touchdown in Week 8. While the QB change in Arizona could change things and call for us to temper expectations, McBride has at least 3 more games without Zach Ertz. However, he looks the part of a weekly fantasy TE1 on this team. Grab him and feel confident starting him moving forward, but know the Clayton Tune/Kyler Murray conundrum could muddy the waters.
If he’s still out there, Ferguson is a must-add, right behind McBride. 4 for 47 and a touchdown in a game where Ceedee Lamb went berserk is nice to see. Dallas’ offense will remain potent so long as they stay healthy, and Ferguson will be a top option for Dak in the red zone and in dicey situations.
We just can’t quit you. Thomas is the guy you look to in dire situations, and somehow he’s sitting on waivers when you need a tight end the most. Week to week, we’ll never know who’s going to be the main target for the Commanders, but Thomas can be the bridge to get you through each week at the tight end position
Anyone you think we missed? Who are you spending your top waiver priority on this week? Sound off on social media and let us know!
Want more fantasy football advice from Rival Fantasy Sports? Subscribe to our YouTube for new content + live shows, including our weekly start/sit advice show, live streaming every Sunday at 11:30am est. Prefer audio only? Subscribe to the podcast on Apple Podcast or Spotify.