News & Analysis

Fantasy football rankings: Risers and fallers entering Week 9

By Dan Clasgens
Oct 30, 2018

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Dec 31, 2017; Seattle, WA, USA; Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson (3) during pregame warmups prior to the game against the Arizona Cardinals at CenturyLink Field. Mandatory Credit: Steven Bisig-USA TODAY Sports

As we head into Week 9, it’s time again for our weekly look at the fantasy football players on the rise or fall in the weekly rankings.

The first half of the fantasy season is in the books. As each week goes by we have new information that is presented to us and it requires careful consideration.

You don’t have much time to reflect before you must turn the page to the following week of action. The first step in that transition is assessing which players are on the rise and which ones are falling in the fantasy rankings coming out of the weekend.

Here’s a look some of the players who are moving up and some that are moving down following Week 8’s action:

Risers

Quarterbacks

Deshaun Watson, Houston Texans
Russell Wilson, Seattle Seahawks
Ryan Fitzpatrick, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Derek Carr, Oakland Raiders

Watson showed no signs of being limited in Week 8 against the Dolphins, throwing for 239 yards and five touchdowns. He only passed 20 times and had one rushing attempt. The good news long term is that he has only been sacked once over the past two games. … For the third straight contest, Wilson threw three touchdowns in the Seahawks’ 28-14 win at Detroit. He now has multiple TDs in six of his seven games in 2018. However, he’s only gone over 20 yards rushing once all year after breaking that mark in 13 of 16 games a year ago. … Fitzpatrick has been named the starter again for the Bucs after going completing 11 of 15 passes for 194 yards and two touchdowns in relief against the Bengals. In what amounts to about four complete games this season the veteran has thrown for 13 touchdowns and 1,550 yards.

Running backs

Joe Mixon, Cincinnati Bengals
Marlon Mack, Indianapolis Colts
Adrian Peterson, Washington Redskins
Chris Carson, Seattle Seahawks
Peyton Barber, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Doug Martin, Oakland Raiders
Josh Adams, Philadelphia Eagles

Mixon has played in six games this season, but Sunday was his first 100-yard rushing effort of the season. He posted a season-high 28.8 PPR points and finished with 24 touches, marking the fourth time he’s had at least 20 touches in a contest this season. … For the second straight week, Mack went off. He’s now posted 6.2 yards per carry and totaled 347 rushing yards and three scores on the ground while pulling in five of his nine targets for 53 yards and another TD in his three games since returning from a hamstring injury. … The Redskins are 5-2 and in first place in the NFC East and Peterson is a top-five fantasy running back. Do you see the correlation? Washington has evolved into a run-first offense and if he holds up AP could pay big dividends. … Carson has only played six games, but he ranks 12th in the league with 103 rushing attempts. He carried the ball 25 times for 105 yards and a touchdown against the Lions in Week 8 and is the clearly the lead dog in the Seattle backfield.

Wide receivers

Tyler Boyd, Cincinnati Bengals
DeVante Parker, Miami Dolphins
Larry Fitzgerald, Arizona Cardinals
DeSean Jackson, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Anthony Miller, Chicago Bears
Sammy Watkins, Kansas City Chiefs
Courtland Sutton, Denver Broncos
D.J. Moore, Carolina Panthers

Boyd continues to prove to be one of the steals of the year at wide receiver. The Bengal posted his third 100-yard day of the season, finishing with a season-best 138 yards and a touchdown on nine receptions against the Bucs. … Miami finally activated Parker with injuries mounting up at wide receiver against the Texans and he delivered. He posted a career-high 134 yards on six catches. … When Byron Leftwich took over as Arizona’s offensive coordinator, he promised to get Fitzgerald more involved. It came to fruition right out of the gate. The veteran posted a season-best 102 yards and a touchdown and added a two-point conversion. … Jackson took advantage of a good matchup against the Bengals’ secondary posting a 3/68/1 stat line. With Fitzpatrick back under center Jackson should be able to rekindle some of his early-season success. … The Chiefs got another big day out of Watkins, who finished with eight catches for 102 yards and two scores against the Broncos. With Tyreek Hill suffering a groin injury, Watkins could see an even bigger boost in his value.

Tight ends

Jack Doyle, Indianapolis Colts
O.J. Howard, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Ed Dickson, Seattle Seahawks
Jordan Thomas, Houston Texans

Doyle returned to the Colts’ lineup after missing five games with a hip injury and played on 75% of the snaps (compared to Eric Ebron’s 18%). In the three games he’s played this year Doyle has out-targeted Ebron 21 to 12. … It is clear that Howard is way ahead of Cameron Brate in the pecking order. He was only targeted four times in Week 8, but he pulled all of them in for four catches for 68 yards and a TD. Howard will also get a boost with the change at quarterback. … Dickson made his debut for the Seahawks. He was only targeted twice but made the most of his opportunities with two catches for 54 yards and a score.

Fallers

Quarterbacks

Jameis Winston, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Alex Smith, Washington Redskins
Baker Mayfield, Cleveland Browns
Joe Flacco, Baltimore Ravens
Sam Darnold, New York Jets

After throwing four interceptions, Wintson was benched against the Bengals. The team announced that Fitzpatrick will get the start in Week 9 for the Bucs. Winston’s future in Tampa Bay looks as dicey as ever, making him droppable in most redraft formats. … Smith’s 0.42 fantasy points per drop back ranks 22nd among qualified passers and he has just eight TD passes through seven games while averaging just 223 passing yards per contest compared to his 269.4 yards per game a year ago. … Flacco was held to 192 yards, one TD and was picked off twice at Carolina. Over his last four games he’s broken 300 yards only one time and had one or fewer TD passes in three of those four contests. … Rookie Darnold struggled mightily with his receiving corps hit by injuries in a loss at Chicago. Overall, it’s been tough sledding as a whole this year in his four road starts as he’s gone 62 of 115 for 487 yards with four touchdowns and three picks.

Running backs

Carlos Hyde, Jacksonville Jaguars
Matt Breida, San Francisco 49ers
Chris Thompson, Washington Redskins
Corey Clement, Philadelphia Eagles
Duke Johnson, Cleveland Browns
Rashaad Penny, Seattle Seahawks

Six carries for 11 yards and zero targets in the passing game. That was the story of the Jacksonville debut of Hyde. Negative game flow was a factor, but with Leonard Fournette potentially returning after the team’s Week 9 bye, Hyde’s fantasy stock is plummeting. … Breida led all 49ers’ running backs with 31 snaps and had a season-high 16 carries, but he hasn’t had a catch in three weeks and has scored in just one of his last seven contests. … With Peterson emerging, Thompson is losing his weekly flex appeal. He is a bit too game-flow reliant and reportedly suffered another rib injury on the opposite side of the rib injury that sidelined him the previous two weeks. … It has become apparent that Clement is not going to be able to parlay the Jay Ajayi injury into being a fantasy asset. Over the past two games he’s turned 15 touches into a total of 27 yards.

Wide receivers

Kenny Golladay, Detroit Lions
Doug Baldwin, Seattle Seahawks
Demaryius Thomas, Denver Broncos
Jordy Nelson, Oakland Raiders
Martavis Bryant, Oakland Raiders
Chester Rogers, Indianapolis Colts

Golladay has hit a bit of a sophomore slump. After scoring a touchdown and/or eclipsing 100 yards in four of his first five games, Golladay has only netted three catches for 49 yards over his past two outings. … Wilson has thrown for three scores in each of the last three games, yet Baldwin hasn’t found the end zone yet this season. He’s been targeted three or fewer times in three of his five appearances. … With Amari Cooper getting dealt to Dallas, it seemed like Nelson and Bryant would see increased opportunities. Nelson was targeted four times but finished with only a single reception for 14 yards. Bryant went without a target and played on just seven of the Raiders’ 50 snaps.

Tight ends

David Njoku, Cleveland Browns
C.J. Uzomah, Cincinnati Bengals
Ricky Seals-Jones, Arizona Cardinals

Despite the fact that the team threw the ball 36 times and that he played of 53-of-64 snaps (15 slot/wide) in Week 8, Njoku finished with no targets. The second-year tight end has the skill set to succeed, but lacks the consistency required to be viewed as an every-week starter. … Bengals’ tight end Uzomah was targeted four times against the Bucs yet failed to come away with a single catch. He’s tough to trust as anything more than a bye-week filler. … Seals-Jones has two or fewer receptions in five of his last six games, including Sunday’s dud two-catch, 12-yard effort against the Cards, and has scored just one TD all season.

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