NFL Fantasy Football Week 9: 7 Sleepers Who Will Help Win Your Matchup

Ethan Norof@ethan_norofCorrespondent INovember 4, 2010

Freeman is a legitimate QB1.
Freeman is a legitimate QB1.Harry How/Getty Images

Another week down, and another week that fantasy football owners have to rearrange lineups with the inordinate amount of injuries that have occurred this season.

With the prolific producers further distancing themselves from the fantasy pretenders, it's become slim pickings on the waiver wire for most at this point in year.

Having said that, it's the quality, not quantity, of options available, and here are 10 deep sleepers that could contribute in a big way for owners willing to gamble with big money. 


Jon Kitna, Dallas

Kitna is anything but a sexy play, but if you're in a bind at the position, the aging veteran is well worth a look. Despite Dallas beginning the season 1-6, owners can bet that Kitna will keep airing it out so long as Tony Romo remains sidelined.

While he did throw an ugly four interceptions last week, his 379 yards are far too many to simply ignore in the majority of formats.

While he will likely have his fair share of unbalanced games, Kitna is a near lock for double-digit points the rest of the way and owners should look at his numbers from his days as a starter in Detroit for a viable comparison. 

Josh Freeman, Tampa Bay

Are you listening yet? This kid is for real.

After suggesting him for Week 8, Freeman responded with 19 fantasy points and turned in his third straight game without an interception.

The progress that the youngster has made since last season is downright remarkable, and the fact that he's still available in most leagues is an absolute shame.

This week, Freeman and the Bucs take on division rival Atlanta, so owners can bet that Freeman will bring his A game as Tampa looks to prove that they really are the best team in the NFC. 


Mike Tolbert, San Diego

Clearly, five straight games with trips to the end zone isn't enough to get consideration for a roster spot these days.

Why is Tolbert still so readily available? Owners continue to be fascinated with rookie runner Ryan Mathews, despite the lack of production this season.

Not counted on whatsoever to contribute in the ground game this season, Tolbert has stepped up big time and emerged as legitimate threat for both the Chargers and fantasy owners.

Despite opposing defenses beginning to key in more on the little big man, Tolbert continues to produce and should do just fine once again in a matchup against the Texans.

Chris Ivory, New Orleans

Other than his sole 100-yard outburst against Tampa Bay in Week 6, Ivory's contributions have been forgettable, to say the least.

However, with New Orlean's two lead tailbacks most likely set to miss yet another week of action, Ivory remains the top dog for at least one more week, and that's all owners will need to capitalize.

With the Saints set to take on a Panthers defense that has allowed an average of over 100 yards per contest to opposing runners, Ivory is a legitimate flex play with significant upside. 


Lance Moore, New Orleans

Moore is one of QB Drew Brees' must trusted targets, and in an offense that potent, that's the type of player owners want on their rosters.

In Week 4, Moore burned the Carolina secondary for five catches, 37 yards and a score, and there's no reason to think he can't at least duplicate those numbers.

With opposing defenses paying far too much attention to Marques Colston and WRs Devery Henderson and Robert Meachem looking absent in the passing game, Moore is a solid but unspectacular WR2 in Week 9.

Darrius Heyward-Bey, Oakland

It's about time. 

While one game won't exactly convince owners that Heyward-Bey has finally arrived, the Oakland receiving corps is so depleted that Heyward-Bey is literally the only option to catch the ball.

With WR Louis Murphy still sidelined and TE Zach Miller fighting a foot injury, Heyward-Bey has finally become fantasy relevant.

While the KC defensive unit has been better than most expected, there are still some serious holes in the pass defense and Heyward-Bey should find himself with back-to-back productive games with another solid effort in Week 9.

Arrelious Benn, Tampa Bay

Despite being drafted two rounds ahead of teammate Mike Williams, Benn's role in the passing game has been far less than that of the former Syracuse standout.

Benn got off to a bit of a slow start in training camp and even carried that into the preseason, but has been readily improving every week.

With a 53-yard reception in last week's game against Arizona, the fans in Tampa are finally getting a chance to see just exactly what the kid is capable of doing. 

Averaging 16.9 yards per catch, Benn's fantasy stock could be set to absolutely skyrocket with his first breakout game, so owners should get on board before he explodes and is rostered by an opponent. 

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