Note: This article was written prior to the NFL trade deadline.

Greetings, fellow fantasy football enthusiasts! Week 9 is upon us, and with it comes a fresh opportunity to elevate your fantasy squad to new heights as we enter the stretch run. The waiver wire, that mystical realm of undiscovered talent, beckons. In this comprehensive guide, we will journey through the landscape of Week 9's waiver wire, unearthing hidden gems and potential game-changers. Get ready to dive deep into the stats, matchups, and emerging stars that could define your fantasy destiny.

The waiver wire is not just a safety net; it’s a realm of boundless potential. Astute managers recognize its power - a place where foresight meets opportunity. In Week 9, the wire teems with players ready to make a fantasy impact, players whose stories are waiting to be written in the annals of your league.

Quarterbacks: Commanders of the Gridiron

Quarterbacks are the cornerstone of fantasy success, orchestrating the plays and filling the stat sheets. Let’s explore two quarterbacks who are ripe for the picking this week.

Will Levis (Tennessee Titans)

Filling in for the injured Ryan Tannehill, Tennessee Titans quarterback Will Levis started on Sunday and emphatically made the statement that the job is now his to lose. Whether the Titan coaching staff sees things the same way or not is a different issue, but Levis has made his case to be the starter the rest of the year after just one game. He ended up with 248 passing yards and 4 (yes, 4!) touchdowns. It’s clear he injected life into the Tennessee offense, and looked good doing so. Even though the Titans are a run-first team, they should see what they have in Levis, and astute fantasy managers in need of a quarterback would be wise to consider picking up the rookie. He does have a tougher upcoming schedule over the next three weeks, so expectations should be tempered accordingly. That said, it’s clear the Titans offense is better with him leading it. 

Sam Howell (Washington Commanders)

Astute fantasy managers who pay attention to this article note that we recommended Washington Commanders quarterback Sam Howell as a waiver-wire pickup back in Week 6. For those who missed out, well….it might be too late. However, managers who are in need of quarterback help need to go get Howell ASAP if he’s still available in their respective leagues. In Week 6, Howell was coming off three 20-point performances but in Week 8, he dominated! The guy is playing extremely well right now despite the number of sacks he’s taken. He’s thrown for at least 249 yards in five out of eight games, scored 18 or more fantasy points in five games, and scored more than two touchdowns in six of eight. He’s also finished as a top-15 quarterback in all but two of his starts. He’s been so good that he should be considered a weekly starter in just about every league. Go get him now if he’s still available.

Running Backs: Ground Game Heroes

Running backs are the engines that power fantasy teams, delivering crucial points week after week. Let’s explore two running backs who are poised to make an impact in Week 9.

Emari Demercado (Arizona Cardinals)

Arizona running back Emari Demercado has now played on 91 snaps while operating with 33 attempts and assembling 136 rushing yards during Arizona’s last two matchups. The rookie has also eviscerated any lingering concerns surrounding his role as the Cardinals’ temporary lead back. He has performed more than adequately since taking over for the injured James Conner (knee). Conner cannot return before Week 10, and the exact timeline isn’t known at this time. Demercado could also retain an ongoing role after Conner has resurfaced. This is the time of the year that backup RB’s are extremely valuable in most leagues regardless of usage, and Demercado could be a player who helps astute managers as we enter the stretch run and get closer to the fantasy playoffs. 

Devin Singletary (Houston Texans)

In Week 6, Houston Texans running back Devin Singletary accumulated more snaps and rushing yards than teammate Damien Pierce, and that put him somewhat on the fantasy map. Singletary’s average of 4.8 yards per carry also exceeded the 2.6 that was attained by Pierce. With that said, in the Week 8 game, Singletary was a bit more non-existent. However, he still secured enough opportunities to present managers with a viable waiver wire option. Singletary nearly matched Pierce’s totals in snaps and rushing attempts in Week 8. Whether or not the Texans are trying to figure out what they currently have or are simply trying to keep Pierce fresh, astute fantasy managers in need of another backup running back should consider picking up the former Bill.

Now more powerful than ever: The Machine - DFS Lineup Optimizer

Wide Receivers: Airborne Playmakers

Wide receivers are the game-changers, capable of turning routine catches into explosive plays. Here are two wide-outs who are ready to shine in Week 9.

Khalil Shakir (Buffalo Bills)

This one is a bit of a deep grab, but if he’s available, Buffalo Bills wide-out Khalil Shakir should be considered a waiver wire pickup. Starting tight end Dawson Knox went on the IR with a wrist injury and this changed the look of the Buffalo offense entirely. They shifted rookie Dalton Kincaid from the slot position into more of a traditional receiver role. That meant Shakir moved into the starting lineup as the slot receiver and gave the coaching staff something to think about. He played on 45 of the team's 69 snaps, ran 33 routes, and finished with six targets. He caught all six of those targets for 92 yards and finished with 12.2 half-PPR points. He also had a productive Week 7 game, catching all four of his targets for 35 yards. That type of production definitely plays. With Knox on IR for the next three weeks, Shakir is likely to stay in the starting lineup as Buffalo's full-time slot position. Astute managers looking for a solid dart-throw should consider him.

Jayden Reed (Green Bay Packers)

Green Bay rookie receiver Jayden Reed is another rookie beginning to make an impact. The Packers' entire offense has struggled mightily since Week 2, but Reed has played well. He has gone over 30 receiving yards in five games this season. He's currently on pace for 763 yards working as the No. 3 receiver on a poor passing offense. It wouldn't be surprising if Reed continues to climb the team's proverbial target hierarchy. Teammate Romeo Doubs only has two touchdowns on the year, so there is the potential for Reed to challenge him as the #2 in the offense. Should Reed continue to play well, the Packers might have another up and coming young stud on their hands. There is some evidence to support the notion that if a rookie wide-out hits at least 500 receiving yards in their first year, the odds of that player remaining fantasy relevant over the long-term dramatically increase. Given Reed’s current yardage projection, he should easily blow past that number. Fantasy managers in need of help at the position should definitely take a look.

Tight Ends: End Zone Guardians

Tight ends are the red zone maestros, often serving as prime targets near the goal line. Let’s explore two tight ends who are poised for fantasy glory in Week 9.

Trey McBride (Arizona Cardinals)

Earlier in the year we discussed Zach Ertz as a commodity at this position, but now that he has been placed on IR, teammate Trey McBride has picked up the slack in a major way. In this week’s game, McBride finished as a TE1 in PPR with 14 targets, 10 receptions, 95 yards, and a touchdown. That is Travis Kelce-level production. With Kyler Murrays’ (knee) impending return and Ertz sidelined for at least three more games, the potential is there for McBride to grab the starting tight end role for Arizona and never look back. With the tight end position typically a fantasy wasteland, McBride provides unique potential and upside, and astute managers in need of help this week should take a long look. 

Taysom Hill (New Orleans Saints)

New Orleans Saints tight end Taysom Hill has quietly been very good over the past three weeks. During that time, he has been the TE6, averaging 13.7 PPR fantasy points. This past week, he also rushed for two touchdowns. That versatility makes him an intriguing option for fantasy teams in need of help. With injuries and bye weeks at the position heading into Week 9 (Darren Waller, Evan Engram, Sam LaPorta, George Kittle), one can do worse than consider Hill. Add to it the fact that the Saints are discovering innovative ways of keeping him involved in the offensive game plan and managers who miss out on McBride or another TE should take a long look at adding Hill off the wire.

Conclusion: Seizing Fantasy Greatness

As Week 9 unfolds, the waiver wire becomes a battlefield of strategic maneuvering and foresight. Every pickup, every roster move, can tip the scales in your favor. Armed with insights and a keen understanding of player potential, you have the tools to transform your fantasy roster into a powerhouse. Trust your instincts, analyze the matchups, and don’t be afraid to make bold decisions. Fantasy greatness is within your reach, and it starts with the choices you make on the waiver wire. May your Week 9 be filled with strategic triumphs, unexpected heroes, and the sweet taste of victory in the ever-thrilling world of fantasy football. Happy managing!