You probably had to make some tough lineup decisions in Week 9 thanks to six teams on bye, and if you're feeling bad about how some of your games went, maybe I can make you feel better. In one of my leagues where I'm the defending champion and entered the week 7-1, I lost to my heretofore winless opponent, who started, among others, Robert Tonyan and Zay Jones

You could probably guess, but he had Justin Fields. If you went up against Fields or Joe Mixon this week, I send my sincerest condolences, because you probably lost. Mixon wasn't just the No. 1 RB Sunday; he outscored No. 2 and 3 combined. Fields didn't dominate the competition to quite that extent, but his 47 points were the second-most by any QB this season. If you managed to beat Mixon and Fields, I'd love to see that lineup, because it must have been something to come out on top.

You can shoot me an email at to show me those lineups, if you've got them -- or, send me an email with "#AskFFT" as the subject line to get some help -- I'll be looking to answer trade questions in Wednesday's newsletter! In today's newsletter, I've got my Week 9 recap ready for you, with my thoughts on every game on the schedule so far. And, if you missed it, I wrote about the top early waiver-wire targets heading into Week 10 right here last night

Tomorrow, we'll have the full breakdown of the Week 10 Waiver Wire plus our first rankings for the upcoming week, but for now, he's one last, comprehensive look at every game from Week 9 so far: 

Week 9 Recap

Oct 30, 2022; Atlanta, Georgia, USA; Carolina Panthers running back D'Onta Foreman (33) reacts after scoring a touchdown against the Atlanta Falcons during the first half at Mercedes-Benz Stadium. Getty

Eagles 29-Texans 17

  • Winner: Miles Sanders. Fantasy Football is hard enough when we're trying to make decisions based on skill, talent, and matchups. But what makes it especially hard is that we also have to account for unknowable human factors like a coach's decision making. Last season, Miles Sanders was a middling-to-bad Fantasy option because the Eagles just didn't really trust him near the end zone, and he ended up with just 10 of the team's 52 touches inside the 10-yard line in the games he plays. This season, he's gotten 14 of 39 -- up from 19.2% to 35.9%. That doesn't explain all of the change in Sanders' value -- he had bad luck last season and is probably running hot in that regard right now -- but the fact is, the Eagles are giving him more opportunities than they did last season, and he's giving them no reason not to keep doing so. He's still pretty TD-dependent, but he's getting them, so who can complain?
  • Loser: DeVonta Smith. That's two duds in a row for Smith and four in eight games with fewer than 8 PPR points. In his other four games? 15, 30.9, 18.7, and 15.4. He's the No. 2 option in an offense that throws the ball a decent amount, but not a ton, with two other high-end playmakers in the passing game, so inconsistency might just be the defining feature of his game. In today's FFT in 5, Adam Aizer called Smith a buy-low candidate, and I agree with that call, but you may just have to live with the up-and-down nature of his skill set and usage. 
  • One more thing: Dameon Pierce looked excellent again this week, as he has done for much of his increasingly impressive rookie season. 139 yards on 27 carries against a team that knew the Texans had little hope of moving the ball if they weren't running it effectively is incredibly impressive, and my skepticism about him as a player looks pretty wrong. But as a Fantasy player? Well, it kinda looks right. As good as he was Thursday night, he had 13.9 PPR points -- a fine total, enough to make him a low-to-mid-range RB2 most weeks. And that's what he's mostly been for his rookie season, with the exception being a three-game stretch where he found the end zone each week. Pierce is worth starting most weeks, but he'll probably keep being a "better in real life than Fantasy" guy until the Texans put a better team around him.

Chargers 20-Falcons 17

  • Winner: Cordarrelle Patterson. I had Patterson ranked as an RB3 Sunday, something he made look silly with his first rushing touchdown and downright foolish with his second. However, he was still part of a three-way split at the position in both the running and passing games. That could be because it was his first game back, but it's worth keeping in mind that the Falcons have talked about wanting to keep Patterson fresh and limit his workload, so I think Tyler Allgeier and Caleb Huntley will still be involved. Patterson should be a useful Fantasy option moving forward, but this might also be an opportunity to see high on a guy who may not be able to stand up to the kind of physical, punishing running style he has. 
  • Loser: Gerald Everett. With five catches for 36 yards, this ended up being a decent enough game from Everett, but it was a reminder that just because the Chargers were missing their two best wide receivers doesn't mean you should expect Everett to be a star in their place. His 18.6% target share was just a couple of points off his season mark. Everett is a solid tight end in a good offense, but he's also still only slightly better than the touchdown-or-bust class most weeks.  
  • One more thing: Kyle Pitts had another subpar game, and it was another subpar game where he dominated on a per-route and per-pass attempt basis. The Falcons threw the ball 23 times and seven of them went to Pitts. He had a couple of near-miss plays that would've made his Fantasy line much more impressive, including what could have been a deep touchdown in the third quarter and then a big play in the fourth that could have potentially gone for a long touchdown if Mariota had been a little more precise. He's an elite talent playing with a mediocre-to-bad QB in a low-volume pass offense, and I'm just going to keep chasing the upside that is so evidently there unless I have obviously better options. For what it's worth, Everett was one of the few TE I thought might be a better option this week, and while he was better, he wasn't great. Such is life at TE, and why I'll keep chasing Pitts' upside. 

Dolphins 35-Bears 32

  • Winner: Justin Fields. I initially wrote, "This was the ceiling game" here, but I'm not sure anyone reasonably could have expected Fields to set the (regular season) single-game QB rushing record. I've been saying he has as much upside as a runner as anyone except Lamar Jackson, but even Jackson's never run for 175-plus yards. That Fields also had three touchdowns through the air really took it to the next level. You can't expect this kind of production every game, but the schedule lines up so, so well for Fields, who gets the Lions and Falcons over the next two weeks. He's an easy top-12 QB for both. 
  • Loser: Raheem Mostert. I thought Mostert's place as Miami's RB1 was relatively safe, but Jeff Wilson matched him in carries Sunday, had one more target, and even out-snapped him, 27-24. If this is going to be close to a 50-50 split moving forward, I'm not sure either back is a top-24 option. 
  • One more thing: Jaylen Waddle had another strong performance Sunday, catching five passes for 85 yards and touchdown, and he's now on pace for over 1,500 yards this season, which would be a Dolphins record by nearly 150 yards -- except he almost certainly won't even set the record. Tyreek Hill is now already up over 1,100 yards in just nine games after going off for 7-143-1 on eight targets, and he's on pace for nearly 2,100 yards in 17 games. Hill is having one of the best seasons we've ever seen from a wide receiver, in a pass-first offense that feeds him targets on more than 30% of their attempts. He probably can't keep this pace up, but I'll also note that he also drew an end zone pass interference from the Bears 33-yard line. He, somehow, could have had an even bigger game. 

Bengals 42-Panthers 17

  • Winner: Joe Mixon. There actually isn't very much to say here -- Mixon probably should've had more touchdowns than he did so far this season, and now he probably has a roughly correct number of touchdowns overall. Sometimes, regression hits like a truck. 
  • Loser: D'Onta Foreman. And this is what I was worried about when I was lukewarm on Foreman last week. The Panthers probably have a mediocre (at best!) offense, and he's largely a non-factor in the passing game, so there are going to be games like this. It was fine to hope that maybe P.J. Walker had unearthed another level, but it looks like this is going to remain a pretty bad situation moving forward, and Foreman will be a touchdown-dependent RB3. 
  • One more thing: The Bengals offense moved the ball at will on the ground, so we didn't really get to see whether they figures things out without Ja'Marr Chase following Week 8's disaster. One interesting wrinkle is that 32 of their 72 plays came from under center -- just 10.7% had come under center the previous three games. Without Chase, they may try to get their power run and play action game going. We'll see how that works in more competitive games. 

Lions 15-Packers 9

  • Injuries: Aaron Jones (ankle) -- After the game, Jones said he could have played through the injury, but admitted the training staff made the right call in holding him out. The concern here is that the Packers play on short rest in Week 11, so if he tries to rush back from this one, it could impact multiple games ... Romeo Doubs (ankle) -- Doubs was on crutches after the game, which seems like a bad sign after he was carted to the locker room ... Christian Watson (concussion) -- This is now two games in a row Watson has left to be evaluated for a concussion, which is a bit scary. I would be surprised if we see him out there in Week 10 as his snake-bitten rookie season continues. 
  • Winner: Allen Lazard. We'll talk more about the disastrous Packers offense, but first, the lone bright spot. Lazard caught just four of 10 targets thrown his way as Aaron Rodgers struggled throughout the game, but he turned those four catches into 87 yards and a touchdown, and he nearly had another -- his knee was down just before he crossed the goal line on a long catch-and-run in the first quarter. The drive would end with an Aaron Rodgers pick in the end zone. It would not be the last.
  • Loser: Aaron Rodgers. In fact, Rodgers threw two picks in the end zone in the first half. And had another picked off inside the Lions' 5-yard line. The Packers have had trouble finishing off drives, and that was a massive issue in this one -- they had another drive stall out late in the red zone. Rodgers doesn't seem to trust his receivers, and he isn't playing well enough to overcome the middling talent surrounding him right now. I don't want to say he can't, but if he can't put up numbers against the Lions, I don't know how you could possibly trust him. 
  • One more thing: D'Andre Swift was even more limited than I thought he would be this week, playing just nine snaps total. He's still an electric playmaker who actually had a chance to score at one point in the first half, getting tackles inside the 5, but I just don't think you can trust him right now. His role should expand eventually, but it's hard to tell if that will be in Week 10 or not. It'll be worth monitoring practice reports and quotes from the coaching staff. 

Jaguars 27-Raiders 20

  • Injuries: Evan Engram (back) -- Engram had just one catch for 8 yards before the injury. 
  • Winner: Davante Adams. After his one-catch game in Week 8, the Raiders made a point of getting Adams involved early and often in this one, as he had six catches for 88 yards and a touchdown in the first quarter and nine for 146 with two scores in the first half. The offense fell apart in the second half, and Derek Carr completed just five of 15 passes for 36 yards overall -- including one of eight to Adams, continuing their early-season struggles to connect -- but it was still a much-needed bounceback. 
  • Loser: Josh Jacobs. Since his three-touchdown game in Week 7, Jacobs has been pretty underwhelming. He hasn't found the end zone in his past two games, while totaling 141 yards across both games -- he had more than that in each game from Week 4-7. Little about Jacobs' role has changed since then, as he had 20 of 23 RB touches Sunday, but it's been disappointing nonetheless given how good he looked prior. I'm still viewing him as an RB1, but with a little less conviction, perhaps. 
  • One more thing: The Jaguars have a clear identity, and it's built around the power running game and Travis Etienne. I'll admit, I didn't see that coming, but he's been a workhorse of late, running 52 times over the past two games. It's helped take pressure off Trevor Lawrence, who I think might have played his best game of the season, despite middling numbers. He could be in line for a second-half breakout. 

Patriots 26-Colts 3

  • Winner: Rhamondre Stevenson. He was the only player who had more than 50 yards from scrimmage, because this was the most boring game of the week and maybe one of the three most boring games of the season. 
  • Loser: The Colts offense. Look, I don't blame them for trying out Sam Ehlinger, because Matt Ryan looked completely washed up. But this didn't look like an NFL-caliber offense. There's talent here, but Ehlinger couldn't do anything in the passing game, they ran the ball 22 times for just 78 yards. The Colts need to watch some tape of the Giants offense and try to figure out what they're doing to get the most out of Daniel Jones, because Ehlinger isn't getting it done. Jonathan Taylor may be returning to a bottom-five offense at this pace. 
  • One more thing: There really isn't much to say here -- there was one offensive touchdown, a nifty one-handed grab by Rhamondre Stevenson in the second quarter. Deon Jackson played 37 of 46 snaps through the first three quarters and just one in the fourth. He'd still be the clear option here if Jonathan Taylor is out in Week 10 against the Raiders and if Jackson is healthy. 

Jets 20-Bills 17

  • Winner: Garrett Wilson. It shouldn't have taken Corey Davis getting hurt and Elijah Moore talking his way out of a role for Wilson to be Fantasy relevant again, and the fact that it did is reason to be skeptical that you can trust Wilson down the stretch. However, he's so obviously the team's best player right now on offense, with 14 catches on 16 targets for 207 yards over the past two games, that it would be coaching malpractice for them not to feature him heavily moving forward. 
  • Loser: Gabe Davis. Here's Davis' PPR scoring by game: 18.8, 6.7, 2.3, 32.1, 16.4, 5.5, 5.3. This is who Davis is. He's a more explosive version of pre-2020 Mike Williams. He's a bigger, stronger version of DeSean Jackson or Tyler Lockett. Just 12 of Davis' 38 targets this season have been thrown within 10 yards of the line of scrimmage, and it's those deep targets that give him so much upside; they also make him tough to count on every week because they are, by definition, low-percentage plays. I know it's frustrating, but you probably just need to ride the roller coaster, because the highs should be worth it. 
  • One more thing: With another week to get acclimated to the team, James Robinson saw his role expand, playing 24 of 60 snaps; Michael Carter played 31. On the other side, Nyheim Hines was active for his first games with the Bills but played just four snaps. I expect his role to continue to grow, and that's going to make it tough to trust Devin Singletary moving forward. I would say none of the backs in this game is likely to be a top-24 RB moving forward, especially with Carter playing just 15 of 29 pass snaps. 

Vikings 20-Commanders 17

  • Winner: T.J. Hockenson. I figured Hockenson would be a big part of the Vikings offense, but I didn't expect him to be the clear No. 2 option in the passing game less than a week after being acquired. He was targeted nine times on 41 passes, catching each of them for 70 yards. With Justin Jefferson and Adam Thielen making plays down the field, Hockenson was the primary short-area target for Kirk Cousins, totaling just 50 air yards on his nine targets. This could be a surprisingly fruitful situation for him if that remains the case. I'll be honest, I'm kicking myself a bit for trading Hockenson this week instead of Kyle Pitts in one league. 
  • Loser: Antonio Gibson. I'll be honest, this might have been my biggest miss of the week. Gibson was a top-15 RB for me with J.D. McKissic out with a neck injury, because I figured he would get most (if not all) of McKissic's passing downs snaps. Gibson did play most of the passing downs, running a route on 20 of 34 pass plays compared to 11 for Robinson, but Taylor Heinicke looked his way just three times. Gibson did end up with 11 carries (Robinson had 13), but without much usage in the passing game, there wasn't much hope for a big game. Heinicke has thrown around 25% of his passes to running backs dating back to the start of last season, so I don't want to take too much from this one if McKissic has to miss more time, but it was certainly a disappointing showing. 
  • One more thing: Curtis Samuel had a solid game if you started him, catching three of four passes for 65 yards with a touchdown (he added a carry for 16 yards, too). But you got bailed out by one of the weirdest plays of the season. Taylor Heinicke threw the ball into triple coverage -- a pass Samuel said after the game he should not have thrown -- but the Commanders got bailed out by the back judge running into the Vikings safety, giving Samuel a chance to come down with the ball. You've gotta be lucky in Fantasy Football, but that was ridiculous. 

Seahawks 31-Cardinals 21

  • Winner: Rondale Moore. Moore lined up in the slot on 40 of his 56 snaps, further proving that his outside role in Week 7 was just a flukey one-game thing. He's played in six games and has eight or more targets in four of them, and 35 of his 69 yards came over the catch Sunday, continuing last week's YAC success. That's always been the profile for Moore, and he's starting to live up to his potential. In PPR leagues especially, he might be a top-24 WR the rest of the way. 
  • Loser: James Conner. Conner got five targets and seven carries in this one, while the other running backs combined for just five carries and one target, so I really don't think there's much to worry about here. 11.4 PPR points in a game without a touchdown isn't a terrible outcome, and Conner played 72% of the snaps despite being a game-time decision with his rib injury, so if the Cardinals offense can create more goal-line opportunities, he should be fine. To be honest, there just isn't a great choice for a "loser" in this one. 
  • One more thing: I'm not sure why Kyler Murray was so hesitant to run early in the season, but he's been much more active over the past six games, and that's always been key to him living up to his upside. He rushed for 60 yards Sunday and he's averaging 49 yards on 7.8 attempts per game over his past six, and while this offense is still pretty janky at times, he's a must-start Fantasy QB as long as he's running like this. 

Buccaneers 16-Rams 13

  • Winner: Rachaad White. The rule is that I pick a winner for every game, and so here we are, going with a running back who is still the clear No. 2 in what is suddenly a pretty mediocre (bad?) offense, only he was slightly more involved this week than he has been in the past. White had eight carries and three targets while Leonard Fournette had nine carries and seven targets, and while it's nice to see his role increasing, it's hard to see him overtaking Fournette without an injury. He's worth rostering, but probably won't be worth starting. 
  • Loser: Tyler Higbee. Honestly, you could put everyone who played in this game here -- except for Cooper Kupp, who remains uniquely capable of rising up from his miserable circumstances. The Buccaneers had 323 yards of offense and the Rams managed just 206. The Buccaneers problems at least seem fixable -- Tom Brady is mostly throwing catchable balls, and guys like Mike Evans just aren't coming down with them. I'm less pessimistic about them than I am about the Rams, who just don't seem to have nearly enough talent. Higbee was getting a ton of targets early in the season -- a result of that lack of talent -- but has just nine targets over the past three games. At 5.6 yards per target, it's hard to argue he should be more involved.  
  • One more thing: Such are the meager joys of the Rams offense that Darrell Henderson rushing for 56 yards makes him the second-best Fantasy option here today. Cam Akers was back Sunday but played just 11 snaps, while Malcolm Brown logged 15; Henderson was the clear leader at 27 snaps, though that was still less than half the team's total. If Henderson was playing 85% of the snaps in this offense, he might be a low-end RB2; as things stand, you'd have to be pretty desperate to use anyone here. 

Chiefs 20-Titans 17

  • Winner: JuJu Smith-Schuster. This was a weird game. The Chiefs threw the ball 68 times, meaning Smith-Schuster's 12 targets are a lot less impressive than they might seem at first glance -- it's just a 17.7% target share. Still, he was the clear top option besides Travis Kelce, who somehow still managed a 25% target share Sunday, because he's ridiculous. When a team runs as many plays and throws as often as the Chiefs did Sunday it's not unusual to see targets and snaps more dispersed than usual, but Smith-Schuster still having three more than any other wide receiver while remaining productive is a good sign. I think he's still more of a low-end WR2 moving forward, but I can't argue with 22.2 PPR points per game over the past three. 
  • Loser: Chiefs running backs. With such a pass-heavy script, Jerick McKinnon played 57 snaps, while Isiah Pacheco played 20 and Clyde Edwards-Helaire logged just 14. McKinnon had played more than half the snaps just twice before this season, and he hadn't had more than three targets before he caught six of eight passes for 40 yards. This is a backfield to avoid unless one of Pacheco or Edwards-Helaire makes one or the other irrelevant or McKinnon becomes a more consistent factor in the passing game. I'm not planning on ranking any of this trio in the top 30 next week. 
  • One more thing: Malik Willis was better than his 5-for-16 line, but not much. He's clearly talented, and has a potentially very Fantasy-friendly skill set -- he rushed for 40 yards Sunday! -- but the Titans clearly don't trust him to do much of anything as a passer. This offense needs Ryan Tannehill back, and hopefully, that'll happen in Week 10 against the Broncos. Not that you should be planning on using anyone here except for Derrick Henry at this point.