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Fantasy Football: Injuries galore influence Week 9 Waiver Wire


Fantasy Football: Injuries galore influence Week 9 Waiver Wire

History will remember Week 8 of the 2015 season as the time the Saints and Giants agreed not to play defense against each other, when Aaron Rodgers looked truly mortal and for Colin Kaepernick's last NFL start as any team's "franchise quarterback." Right now, fantasy football owners view the week that was as the time all of their players came down with a serious case of the injury bug.

This week's look at the fantasy football free agents starts off by looking at which players replace all those who suffered various sprains, tears and dings.

LeVeon Bell's season-ending knee injury means DeAngelo Williams

Owners ended up spending a top 5 pick on the Steelers running back for six games. That sentence defines the term "ugh." However, many backed up their investment initially by also drafting Williams, who shined in the opening two weeks with Bell suspended. Those that kept the veteran on their roster even when Bell returned from suspension are breathing easier today knowing they still have Pittsburgh's starting RB. Williams doesn't offer Bell's "carry your team for a week" upside, but there's a strong chance he'll be a top 10-15 fantasy RB the rest of the season. If you've been holding out on making a splash in free agency or simply need an RB like the flower needs the sun, spend aggressively on Williams. $50-70 bids will not be laughed at here.

Matt Forte's MCL injury means Jeremy Langford

The Bears have yet to put a timeframe on Forte's return, but at least he's not expected to miss the season. Initial reports suggest he will be sidelined at least two weeks. That means Langford, who has 27 carries for 80 yards on the season, likely takes over. The rookie from Michigan State has every-down potential and there isn't much else of note on the roster, though ex-Falcon Antone Smith lingers. If he's expected to carry the load, consider Langford an RB2 in Week 9 against a leaky Chargers run defense. Your bid in the $8-25 range depends on level of need.

Steve Smith's (career-ending?) Achilles tear means Kamar Aiken

There is no replacing Smith's tough guy and big catch presence, but Aiken now takes over as the Ravens' No. 1 wide receiver. The 6-foot-2 slot threat caught all six targets thrown his way in Sundays win over San Diego. Baltimore ends up in one shootout after another these days so he offers value in standard and PPR formats when the Ravens return from their bye week. Keep an eye on speedster Chris Givens, who could end with some fantasy value going forward as Joe Flacco's deep threat.

Keenan Allen's kidney injury means Malcom Floyd, Stevie Johnson and Dontrelle Inman

It appears as if San Diego will play without its volume pass-catching receiver for multiple weeks based on initial reports. Tight ends Antonio Gates (knee) and Ladarius Green (ankle) are also on the injury report. Looking at the remaining receivers, Floyd is typically a boom-or-bust option, meaning he offers the most potential, but isn't the consistent. Johnson's PPR value is interesting as he could end up with plenty of targets. Inman is the sneaky unknown in the group. Allen owners can bid on all three in that order while others can take a flyer on Floyd and Johnson in the $5-10 range.

Khiry Robinson broken right tibia means more C.J. Spiller

Mark Ingram dominates the work in the Saints backfield, but coach Sean Payton mixes in other players. Now one of those players is lost for the season. Spiller won't automatically take over Robinson's snaps seeing as they handle different roles, but he's likely to receive more work. Granted, he's done little with his opportunities this season. There is certainly hope in the Saints offense that he can turn into a RB3/Flex option.

Reggie Bush's knee injury means ... Kendall Gaskins or Pierre Thomas?

Bush was replacing the injured Carlos Hyde (foot), who could be out through the 49ers Week 10 bye. Now Bush is out for the remainder of the season and his replacement, Mike Davis, suffered a broken hand. That leaves the unproven Gaskins as the last man standing on the roster -- or at least it did until San Francisco signed veteran free agent Pierre Thomas. Not a single player in this offense looks appealing, but somebody will get the ball. Putting nominal bids on Gaskins and Thomas is fine for those in need.

Vernon Davis traded to Denver means ... Vernon Davis

This isn't about an injury, but rather a trade and one that potentially puts a former fantasy stalwart back on the radar.  Tread lightly on the Peyton Manning enthusiasm following his impressive performance against the Packers. Let's see if his arm holds up going forward. That said, anything Manning offers is better than what Davis dealt with in San Francisco. His 18 catches on the season is more about the 49ers putrid passing attack than the ex-Terp's skills. Owners streaming tight ends should certainly add Davis as one of their options now just in case he pops immediately. Otherwise, he offers low-end TE1 potential. If nothing else with Davis' fantasy value, at least now there's a pulse.

RELATED: Smith surgery set for next week, no word on future plans

Running backs 

1. DeAngelo Williams

2. Jeremy Langford

3. Theo Riddick

4. Kendall Gaskins

5. David Cobb

Others: Antonio Andrews, Chris Thompson, Charles Sims, Javorius Allen, Pierre Thomas

Wide receivers

1. Kamar Aiken

2. Malcom Floyd

3. Brandon LaFell

4. Michael Floyd

5.Nate Washington

6. Stevie Johnson

Others: Davante Adams, Tavon Austin, Dorial Green-Beckham, Chris Givens

Tight ends 

1. Ben Watson

2. Charles Clay

3. Heath Miller

4. Vernon Davis

5. Crockett Gillmore

Others: Austin Seferian-Jenkins, Richard Rodgers

Quarterbacks (Week 9 streaming)

1. Jay Cutler at Chargers

2. Derek Carr at Steelers

3. Tyrod Taylor vs. Dolphins

4. Jameis Winston at Giants

5. Kirk Cousins at Patriots

Defenses (Week 9 streaming)

1. Bengals vs. Browns

2, Bills vs. Dolphins

3. Eagles at Cowboys

4. Saints vs. Titans

5. Chargers vs. Bears

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Ryan Grant reportedly signing with Colts after failed physical with Ravens

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Ryan Grant reportedly signing with Colts after failed physical with Ravens

It looks like Ryant Grant has found his new home, again.

After a failed physical with the Ravens, James Jones of NFL Network reports Grant plans to sign with the Colts.


Grant originally agreed to a four-year, $29 million deal with the Ravens, before the team pulled the offer citing an ankle injury that dated to the Redskins' final regular-season game, according to reports.

Baltimore eventually signed Michael Crabtree to a three-year deal, while Grant had visits with the Colts and Raiders.

His agent, Rocky Arceneaux, says Grant has been working out, running routes, and his ankle had been cleared by Dr. Robert Anderson in a second opinion.

In 2017 with the Redskins, he appeared in all 16 games, with 45 receptions for 573 yards and four touchdowns.


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Redskins bring in another defensive lineman for free agency visit, per source


Redskins bring in another defensive lineman for free agency visit, per source

The Redskins hosted Sylvester Williams for a free agency visit on Tuesday morning, per a source with knowledge of the situation. 

Williams played in 2017 with the Titans, logging 20 tackles in 11 starts. Tennessee released Williams this offseason, just one year into a three-year, $16 million deal. 

Drafted in the first round by the Broncos in 2013, the 6-foot-3, 313 lbs. Williams' stat line has never really popped. That isn't uncommon for a nose tackle though, as the job is less about tackles than it is holding leverage against the interior of an offensive line. 


Should the Redskins sign 29-year-old Williams, it would represent the first true nose tackle free agency addition since Terrance "Pot Roast" Knighton joined the team in 2015 from Denver. In an ironic twist, Williams took over at nose in Denver when Knighton left for Washington, and posted his best season as a Bronco. 

Washington restructured its deal with Terrell McClain, reported first by ESPN, which could allow more flexibility to add another defensive lineman. That could come in the draft, but the club has been very active talking with free agents to play on the defensive front. 

On Monday, Johnathan Hankins and Pernell McPhee visited with Redskins officials in Ashburn. Hankins would carry the heaviest price tag, but his past performance would also indicate the most promise. 

McPhee is an edge rusher with enough bulk to play against the run as well. Williams compares more with Hankins, and could be seen as the secondary option.

Among 79 nose tackles Pro Football Focus graded, Williams ranked 36th. For comparison, Bengals star Geno Atkins ranked No. 1, Dontari Poe ranked 26th, former Redskin Chris Baker ranked 65th and current Redskin Ziggy Hood ranked 79th. 

It's also worth noting that since the Titans released Williams, should the Redskins sign the nose tackle, his contract would not count towards the NFL compensatory pick formula. 

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