Running backs ruled in Week 8. If you had one (or two, or three) who were able to rack up good numbers, you had a great shot at winning your matchup. If you didn't, you probably lost unless you had a big piece of that Texans-Seahawks showdown.
Heading into the Sunday night game, only seven quarterbacks had 20-plus Fantasy points, a dozen receivers had 10-plus Fantasy points and seven tight ends managed at least eight Fantasy points. How are our Fantasy teams supposed to be competitive when guys like Cam Newton, Drew Brees, Julio Jones, Brandin Cooks, Hunter Henry and Jordan Reed aren't coming through? Especially when we have another week with six teams on bye in Week 9?
One way to turn things around is to find help off the free-agent pile.
The Big Get
The Ravens' passing game might not be so good, but their run game appears back on track thanks to Alex Collins. The Ravens couldn't get the ground attack going with Terrance West, Danny Woodhead and Javorius Allen earlier this season, but Collins established himself as the best runner in Baltimore. Finally given the chance to play in a big role, including in the red zone, Collins smashed the Dolphins for 6.3 yards per carry en route to his first-ever 100-yard outing.
With no one to challenge him for early-downs work, Collins should keep getting double-digit carries (and even a few catches) against a slate of several favorable matchups. Three of their remaining opponents rank in the bottom quarter in Fantasy points allowed and three more are against opponents who did well against the run earlier in the year but are starting to decline.
Bank on Collins being the hottest waiver-wire pick-up this week.
Mack played a season-high 39 snaps on Sunday -- one more than Frank Gore. It's further proof the Colts are trusting their rookie running back more. He saved his stat line with a catch-and-run for a touchdown Sunday, but in his previous three weeks he averaged 8.4 yards per carry. He's got incredible speed and his big-play ability will keep getting him on the field. It feels like Mack in Indy is on a similar track as Collins in Baltimore. If you can find him, add him.
Burkhead emerged with 68 receiving yards on seven catches (and seven targets), along with 15 rush yards. It's refreshing to see him play a season-best 27 snaps, but if you add Burkhead, it's got to be for the long-term. The Patriots are on bye in Week 9 and then play at Denver in Week 10. PPR-league owners looking for depth should definitely cast an eye on him, while squads fighting to stay above .500 might not want to dedicate the roster space to him.
We knew LeGarrette Blount would get fed the rock plenty against the 49ers, but it was Clement, not Wendell Smallwood, being that "second guy" in the Eagles offense. Clement did well, rushing for 54 yards on 10 carries over 20 snaps, mostly in the second half. We could still see Smallwood return to that No. 2 role behind Blount, but as far as bench stashes go, Clement should be in the conversation.
Could it be a matter of time before McKissic becomes the Seahawks' best running option? Eddie Lacy and Thomas Rawls combined for minus-1 yard of total offense Sunday. McKissic didn't do much either, but if the Seahawks are going to become a pass-only offense, he's the best fit since he's a converted receiver, especially since he's currently healthier than C.J. Prosise. If you're in a deep league with lots of bench space, pick him up. Usable as a running back and as a receiver in CBS Sports' Commissioner leagues, just ask your commish to change a simple league setting to unlock his dual eligibility.
Thanks in large part to his six-catch, 102-yard, two-score effort on Sunday, this fourth-year receiver has already achieved career-highs in yards and touchdowns with nine games to play. He's also on a team that can't run the ball, so he should continue to see plenty of targets from week to week. A popular addition off waivers last week, expect the Fantasy fanatics to flock to Richardson this week and push his ownership north of 70 percent. Four of his next five matchups appear to be pretty good.
Look, the Jets just aren't going to be a run-dominant offense very often. Even in conditions that screamed "run the ball!" we saw Josh McCown sling it Sunday. Anderson came through in a big way, catching all six of his targets for a huge 104 yards and a touchdown. He's the Jets' leader in targets and receiving yards by a large margin, and thanks to his scores in consecutive weeks, is now one touchdown away from tying Jermaine Kearse for the team lead. Expect some dud games in his future, including potentially Week 9 versus Buffalo on Thursday. But his speed and workload make him an approachable Fantasy option in the long run.
Like Richardson, Lockett benefitted from a Seattle offense that had to throw simply because it couldn't run. And, like Richardson, Lockett has unique speed to make him dangerous down the field. That's what helped him notch his first 100-yard game of the season Sunday, just like Richardson. But unlike Richardson, Lockett has yet to score this season and has gone in for six just once in his last 21 games. He also doesn't play quite as often -- about 10 fewer snaps per game. This doesn't mean Lockett isn't worth taking a gander at off waivers, but it does mean he's not as appealing as ... well, you know who.
Most people who drafted Crowder let him go long before Week 8, and now they need to hustle to pick him back up after his 13-target, nine-catch, 123-yard breakout against the Cowboys. He's seen steady playing time for much of the season and certainly since the Redskins' Week 5 bye, but his role in the offense was basically absent until Sunday. This was great, but there are two things working against Crowder. For one thing, Kirk Cousins has proven that he's willing to change up his targets — last week Jordan Reed had 10 targets, this week he had one. Second, the Redskins begin a challenging schedule kicking off next week at Seattle. Feel free to speculate on Crowder but don't buy into him being this involved every Sunday.
Doyle has quickly become one of those players in standard leagues who seems to do great when no one starts him, and then stinks when people chase his numbers from the week prior and wind up being disappointed. He's a different story in PPR formats, however. Before catching 12 of 14 targets at Cincinnati on Sunday, he was good for at least six catches in each of his previous two games. Moreover, he's enjoying a 78 percent catch rate since missing Week 5. It's pretty clear he's a favorite of Jacoby Brissett's, and he should have a shot at corralling catches at Houston in Week 9.
Hooper will get attention because he caught a short touchdown, but it was just his second score of the season. Hooper is decidedly a role player for the Falcons and not someone who should be counted on in Fantasy leagues. Making that point clear, he totaled nine Fantasy points in his previous five games before taking on the Jets. The Falcons are on the road for a third consecutive week at Carolina on Sunday, and even though Hooper scored versus the Panthers on a 42-yard grab last year, he's not a great choice unless you're streaming tight ends.
After going for 257 yards and a couple of touchdowns against the Falcons, McCown has been good for at least two passing scores in four straight games. The only other quarterbacks who could lay claim to similar successes this season are Dak Prescott, Aaron Rodgers, Deshaun Watson, Kirk Cousins and Carson Wentz. Pretty good company! He'll go for five in a row on Thursday against the Bills. That's a tough matchup on a short week, but his production is undeniable. He's an adept replacement for Tom Brady or Philip Rivers in Week 9, better than Jacoby Brissett.
Keenum lit up the Browns for 288 yards and a couple of touchdowns on Sunday, but he'll take Week 9 off before playing at Washington in Week 10. It's up to you if you want to add Keenum now or wait until early November to pick him up, but either way he's a risky choice with Sam Bradford and Teddy Bridgewater waiting to get healthy enough to take his job. Four of the Vikings' next five games are on the road.