Fantasy Football Week 8 Cheat Sheet: Deep Sleepers to Grab on Waiver Wire

Zach Buckley@@ZachBuckleyNBANational NBA Featured ColumnistOctober 23, 2019

Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Matt Moore (8) throws against the Denver Broncos during the second half of an NFL football game, Thursday, Oct. 17, 2019, in Denver. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)
David Zalubowski/Associated Press

As we approach Week 8 of the 2019 NFL season, it's time to get intimately familiar with the fantasy football waiver wire.

The injury report is perpetually expanding. The bye weeks will sideline at least two squads (and as many as six) through Week 12. An apparently busy trade season only increases the volatility of fantasy stocks.

In other words, you need sleepers. Luckily, we're here to wake you up to the top options available in at least 50 percent of Yahoo Sports leagues, per FantasyPros.


Matt Moore, QB, Kansas City Chiefs (1 Percent Owned)

We promise we're not kidding, and, no, we're not close relatives of Matt Moore, either. We're genuinely interested in him as a potential fantasy streamer, even if he's a 35-year-old journeyman who was coaching high school football in August.

Moore peaked at serviceable, and it's been a minute since he even registered as that. But this situation couldn't be any sweeter. While he can't borrow Patrick Mahomes' rocket arm or mobility, Moore does have the benefit of playing in an Andy Reid offense and enjoying all the playmaking talent around him that Mahomes had at his disposal.

Moore looked rock-solid after tagging in for an injured Mahomes during the second quarter of Thursday's win. Moore completed 10 of his 19 passes for 117 yards, a touchdown and no interceptions.

"The best part is we didn't have to change up a lot of things," Reid told reporters. "The hard thing to do is if one guy comes in, the backup comes in, and you have to change the whole offense right away. That's a tough deal. We didn't have to do that with him."

The Chiefs will surely adapt some things to Moore's style, but it's not like this is about to become a run-first offense or anything. He'll get thrown into the fire, starting with a potential shootout against the Green Bay Packers on Sunday night.


Ty Johnson, RB, Detroit Lions (2 Percent Owned)

The worst fears of the Detroit Lions have been officially realized. Top running back Kerryon Johnson has been placed on injured reserve due to a knee injury.

That's a brutal blow to any invested owners, but the next-man-up mentality that will now steer the Lions' backfield is the same one fantasy players should adopt. With Johnson out of the equation, Detroit must replace nearly 17 touches per game.

A lot of those could go to rookie rusher Ty Johnson, who racked up 14 touches in relief of the hobbled starter during the Week 7 loss to the Minnesota Vikings. The younger Johnson plays like he's been shot out of a cannon. Over his four-year career at Maryland, he churned out his 348 carries at a 7.6-yards-per-attempt clip.

Barring any transactions, the Lions are left to lean on Ty Johnson and J.D. McKissic. It's possible Johnson will take on the lead rushing role while McKissic handles the passing-down duties. With Ty Johnson potentially looking at 15ish touches per game over the next eight weeks—Kerryon Johnson can't return any sooner—the upside is too rich to ignore.


Kenny Stills, WR, Houston Texans (13 Percent Owned)

The Houston Texans could be without Will Fuller for a while. His latest injury, a hamstring pull, is expected to sideline him for the next "several weeks," per NFL Network's Ian Rapoport.

This could be the key to restoring Kenny Stills' fantasy relevance. He should vault up to the No. 2 spot on the wide receiver depth chart, as his heavy involvement in Week 7 (four catches on five targets for 105 yards) suggested.

If you're seven weeks into the season and have a chance to get the second-best pass-catcher for a star signal-caller like Deshaun Watson, you can't pass that up.

The speedy Stills can work downfield magic with Watson. For his career, Stills' 274 receptions have gone for an average of 16.2 yards, and he wasn't always catching passes from a quarterback of this caliber. He should be a plug-and-play option, especially with Houston set to face an Oakland Raiders defense allowing the fourth-most fantasy points to wide receivers, per Yahoo Sports.