10 Fantasy Football Waiver Wire Targets Heading Into Week 8
It's getting close to the mid-point of the fantasy football season, and a key waiver wire acquisition or trade could be the tipping point in turning your season from dud to contender. Despite all of the initial challenges of whether a season was even going to occur, seven weeks are nearly complete, and there's still time to make up some ground.
Unlike Week 6, which saw some key injuries, outside of the wide receiver position where Diontae Johnson, Odell Beckham and Dede Westbrook left games, most teams went relatively unscathed at the skill position, so we've got that going for us, which is nice.
I'll stick to players rostered on 60% or fewer of Yahoo teams and also list some other viable pickups who may be available in shallower leagues or relevant in only deeper leagues.
Baker Mayfield, Browns
Roster Percentage: 33%
Could it be that Baker Mayfield of the Cleveland Browns is actually a pretty talented signal-caller? After getting sent to the pine a week ago and missing on his first five passing attempts and throwing an interception, the quarterback had to be looking over his shoulder for Case Keenum to take the field.
Then, the dude went ham. Mayfield completed his next 21 passes in the game and 5 scoring passes to lead the Browns in a wild shootout win over the Cincinnati Bengals.
While he has been a bit up-and-down and difficult to trust, his next two contests are gorgeous. He faces the Las Vegas Raiders next, and following a bye in Week 9, he gets to attack a porous Houston Texans defense that allowed 283 passing yards and 4 scores to Aaron Rodgers.
Jimmy Garoppolo, 49ers
Roster Percentage: 30%
Rostering Jimmy Garoppolo has been a maddening exercise so far in 2020. After starting the season with back-to-back outstanding performances, an ankle injury forced the quarterback to the sideline, and he was downright awful in a blowout loss to the Miami Dolphins, where he tallied 77 mediocre yards before getting pulled in an embarrassing loss.
However, he rounded into form against the Los Angeles Rams, scoring a key NFC West victory with 268 yards and 3 scores before turning into a game manager this week in a rout of the New England Patriots.
Derek Carr, Raiders
Roster Percentage: 29%
Sunday was likely one to forget for Derek Carr, who started off red-hot for the Las Vegas Raiders (3-3 and 62 yards on the opening drive). Unfortunately, that solid play didn't continue, as he finished with 284 yards in a loss to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
Fret not, my friends, as Carr's schedule opens up quite nicely on the horizon. He will get the Browns, who were gashed by Joe Burrow for over 400 passing yards, and then he faces the Los Angeles Chargers, who have been decimated by injury and allowed 27-plus points in each of their last three games.
Expect Carr to bounce back in Week 7.
Gio Bernard, Bengals
Roster Percentage: 59%
Look, I get it. Giovani Bernard may not be available in your league. But, he is available in about half of all Yahoo leagues, and if he's an option on the waiver wire, we can't ignore him if Joe Mixon continues to miss time.
With Mixon out of the mix on Sunday, Bernard was the clear workhorse. His day was a bit ugly and salvaged by his rushing touchdown, but be aware that Samaje Perine logged only two touches, and Travyeon Williams did not record a touch. That's big.
Next up is an average Titans rush defense, so make sure you keep your eyes peeled.
Joshua Kelley, Chargers
Roster Percentage: 43%
With Austin Ekeler sidelined, the Los Angeles Chargers' running back situation has been a bit murky, but Week 7 may have sorted things out. If things continue to hold to form, Joshua Kelley, not Justin Jackson, is the back we want.
Now, buyer beware -- the injured offensive line for the Chargers didn't give a whole lot of room to run, as evidenced by his 12 carries for only 29 yards. But his workload seems obvious, and on the upcoming schedule following a contest with the Denver Broncos, he showcases three top-10 matchups against Las Vegas, Miami, and the New York Jets.
Carlos Hyde, Seahawks
Roster Percentage: 10%
This is your perfect next-man-up situation, and with Chris Carson exiting the game with an ankle injury in the second quarter, this is a situation we need to monitor, as it looks like Carlos Hyde is ready to be the man in the backfield.
Assuming Carson can't start this week, Hyde rushed 15 times for 68 yards and a score, and he garnered an additional 3 targets in the passing game. He did give away some passing down work to Travis Homer, but he was heavily involved in the offense.
Keep a close eye on this one, but Hyde could make for a sneaky add.
JaMycal Hasty, 49ers
Roster Percentage: 21%
This one is a bit confusing to figure out. A week ago, we highlighted that Tevin Coleman could be activated off of the injured reserve, but all signs point to another week before that occurs.
Enter JaMycal Hasty, who took over after Jeff Wilson exited the game with an injury. Hasty looked pretty darn explosive, toting the rock 9 times for 56 yards, and he also added a touch in the passing game for a 16-yard reception.
With both Raheem Mostert and Wilson out, and if Coleman cannot make his return, Hasty becomes a must add.
Brandon Aiyuk, 49ers
Roster Percentage: 48%
We've been waiting for the Brandon Aiyuk aerial show to commence, and now we are cooking with some gas.
While the run-focused San Francisco 49ers may scare some folks off, it's clear that the rookie wideout is a major part of this offense. After recording his fourth game out of the last five with five or more targets, purely this blowout game script is all that seemed to keep Aiyuk from a bigger day, as he finished with 115 receiving yards.
Factor in that fellow pass catcher Deebo Samuel left the game this week, Week 8 could turn into a monster afternoon against the porous Seahawks pass D.
Cole Beasley, Bills
Roster Percentage: 40%
While he was dinged up to start the year, Beasley assumed the role of intermediate pass catcher and logged a team-high 12 targets, grabbing 11 of them for 112 receiving yards. With John Brown and Dawson Knox out, Beasley's 27.9% target market share certainly opened some eyes.
Bill Belichick and the New England Patriots await, who always can cause some problems, but it's likely ace cornerback Stephon Gilmore will shadow Stefon Diggs, leaving Beasley plenty of room to operate.
Harrison Bryant, Browns
Roster Percentage: 1%
It's totally fair to ask yourself, "who the heck is Harrison Bryant?" After this week's waiver wire run, most definitely, people will be aware.
With Austin Hooper inactive due to appendicitis, both backup tight ends enjoyed scoring days, but it was Bryant who slammed his way to 4 catches on 5 targets for 56 yards and finding the end zone not once, but twice.
After a four-catch performance against the Dallas Cowboys in Week 4, it appears this rookie has a role carved out in the offense, especially with Hooper out in the short term.