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Week 9 Fantasy Football Matchup Winners

Every week, I do the dirty work for you and dig into every Sunday matchup to determine who is the player from each team to spotlight. This involves looking at Fantasy Points Per Game (PPG) and yardage allowed by defenses, along with looking at player usage and performances. I will always have hits and misses, but I will also always have detailed reasoning behind the points I am making.

Week 8 Hits

  • Dak Prescott – 29.1 Fantasy Points
  • Alvin Kamara – 27 Fantasy Points
  • Jalen Hurts – 27.4 Fantasy Points
  • George Kittle – 23.9 Fantasy Points
  • Austin Ekeler – 23.3 Fantasy Points
  • Breece Hall – 21.3 Fantasy Points
  • Javonte Williams – 18.8 Fantasy Points
  • Terry McLaurin – 17.4 Fantasy Points
  • Calvin Ridley – 14.3 Fantasy Points

Misses on guys like Christian Watson, George Pickens, Drake London, Zay Flowers, and Isiah Pacheco. I feel very good though when it comes to my hit-to-miss ratio so far with these articles.. Below are players I feel will have a solid Fantasy Football performance, and are considerations to add to your DFS lineups for Week 9. Keep in mind that the Broncos, Lions, Jaguars, and 49ers are all on a BYE. Let’s get it!

Fantasy Football Matchup Winners for Week 9

Dolphins vs. Chiefs (morning game)

  • Tua Tagovailoa: The Chiefs are not necessarily a plus matchup, but facing Patrick Mahomes who is currently third in passing attempts should mean a lot through the air to match that from Tua Tagovailoa. Also encouraging was Russell Wilson throwing three touchdowns against the Chiefs in Week 8 in the Broncos’ upset win. Tua is the QB5 overall for Fantasy Football this season, with three weeks as a top 3 quarterback averaging 20 Fantasy PPG. Tua has also had three weeks of three passing touchdowns and a week with four. Tyreek Hill has been on absolute fire this season and Jaylen Waddle had his best game of the year last week and provides so much after the catch to push both the ceiling and floor up for Tua.
  • Rashee Rice: The Dolphins allow the 10th most Fantasy PPG to wide receivers this season. As previously mentioned, you have to figure this Miami vs. Kansas City game is going to be through the air in Week 9. Rashee Rice has been targeted five or more times six times this season. It was a down Week 8 for Kansas City in general, but in Week 7 Rice scored his third touchdown of the season, finished with 60 yards and a season-high 17 Fantasy Points. The week prior to that, Rice finished with 72 receiving yards. Again, down Week 8, but what is significant is the fact that Rice played 61% of the snaps, a season-high and a continued trend upwards. Rice has 12 more targets than any other Kansas City wide receiver so far this season and is looking more and more important to this offense. My take for Rice is that he sees a season-high in targets in Week 9.

Vikings vs. Falcons

  • TJ Hockenson: The sequence of events for the Vikings has been wild – first Kirk Cousins has a season-ending injury, next the Vikings trade for Joshua Dobbs, then lastly they announce rookie Jaren Hall will start for Week 9. TJ Hockenson is currently tied for the most targets at the tight end position at 68, averaging 8.5 targets per game. With a round-five rookie quarterback starting, I have a feeling that the reliable target is going to be TJ Hockenson instead of stretching the field with either Jordan Addison or KJ Osborn. The Falcons allow the 14th most Fantasy PPG to tight ends.
  • Drake London: The Vikings allow the sixth most Fantasy PPG to wide receivers this season. Drake London has not been the most consistent Fantasy Football scorer this season, but he does rank 16th in total targets from Weeks 2-8 if we scratch that Week 1 asterisk. London finished Week 2 as the WR21, Week 5 as the WR19, and Week 6 as the WR6. The Falcons have not turned the starting quarterback role over to Taylor Heinicke, which I feel is a major plus for London. Heinicke has thrown for 270+ passing yards five times across the 2022 and 2021 seasons and has finished 10 games with multiple passing touchdowns during this span. I like London this week in a plus wide receiver matchup with a quarterback upgrade but we have to monitor his status now with two missed practices dealing with a groin issue.

Bears vs. Saints

  • Jamaal Williams: The Bears allow the seventh most Fantasy PPG this season to running backs. I wanted to plug Jamaal Williams as a desperation play for the week, if your Fantasy Football team was impacted by injuries and/or this BYE week. The Saints allow the fifth least total yards per game this season and face backup quarterback Tyson Bagent who had a poor Week 8 showing. I have a feeling that this game might get out of hand which could mean more rest time for Alvin Kamara in the second half of the game. Jamaal Williams has played 22% and 23% of the snaps in the last two games, touching the ball five and seven times. This game script could enable Williams to see quality touches, and we know his upside in the red zone.

Rams vs. Packers

  • Darrell Henderson: The Packers allow the sixth most Fantasy PPG to running backs and seventh-most rushing yards per game this season. Week 7 was Darrel Henderson’s first week in action after signing back with the Rams, and he has finished as the RB17 and RB19 the last two weeks. 18 attempts for 61 rushing yards and a touchdown in Week 7, and then three receptions for 54 yards in Week 8 highlight the ground and air game for Hendo. Royce Freeman is also playing a significant role and even played a higher snap percentage than Henderson in Week 8, but Henderson is the touch leader. With Matthew Stafford also suffering a UCL sprain in his thumb, it only makes sense to turn to the ground game in Week 9 for a plus matchup.
  • Luke Musgrave: The Rams allow the fifth most Fantasy PPG to tight ends this season. Luke Musgrave is a player we will have to monitor prior to his game this week due to being limited with an ankle issue. Musgrave suffered the ankle injury in Week 7 but played through it in Week 8, on the field for 72% of the snaps. Musgrave has had games of eight and seven targets this season, along with games of 49 and 50 receiving yards. When healthy, I feel Musgrave has a significant role as he has played a quality snap percentage every week he has been healthy and looks connected with Jordan Love. 

Commanders vs. Patriots

  • Jahan Dotson: The Patriots allow the 12th most Fantasy PPG to wide receivers this season. Jahan Dotson is a player trending in the right direction the last two weeks. In Week 7, Dotson’s five receptions on eight targets for 43 yards foreshadowed a big Week 8. Dotson caught eight of his 10 targets for 108 receiving yards and scored a touchdown for 24.8 Fantasy Points last week, putting Fantasy Football managers on notice. Dotson has been disappointing this season after scoring 16+ Fantasy Points five times his rookie season while missing time, but Week 8 could be the big turning point. 18 targets across the last two games and a major Fantasy week in Week 8 make Dotson a FLEX option for Week 9 in a good matchup for wide receivers.
  • JuJu Smith-Schuster: The Commanders allow the second most Fantasy PPG to wide receivers and the fourth most passing yards per game this season. This is one of my hottest takes of the article, but I believe this will be JuJu Smith-Schuster’s big day in a Patriots uniform. Kendrick Bourne’s season ended with an ACL injury, Devante Parker is in concussion protocol and although rookie Demario Douglas has stepped up I think this will end up being a JuJu game. JuJu scored last week after his return from missing two games, playing 34% of the snaps. JuJu opened up the season earning 13 targets but has yet to make much of an impact for the Patriots. FLEX dart throw here for someone who has shown us Fantasy production in the past.

Seahawks vs. Ravens

  • Jaxon Smith-Njigba: The Ravens are not a plus matchup for wide receivers, but I do want to take note here of Jaxon Smith-Njigba whose role has shifted following the Seahawks Week 5 BYE. Prior to the BYE, JSN played under 60% in all four weeks but following the BYE he has played 72%, 63%, and 66% of the snaps. Back-to-back games with a touchdown, and 16.3 Fantasy Points in Week 7. Tyler Lockett is also dealing with a hamstring issue right now. I like JSN as a second-half-of-the-year FLEX candidate for your lineups.
  • Zay Flowers: I may have mentioned Zay Flowers more than any other player in this article series so far this year. I am simply a big fan of the flashes we have seen, Flowers’ role on a great offense, and his skillset in general. Seattle allows the eighth most Fantasy PPG to wide receivers and the 11th most passing yards per game. Flowers still leads the Ravens in total targets, with 16 more than Mark Andrews who did miss a game but would not have hit that differential in the game missed. Three games of 70+ receiving yards, three games over 15 yards per catch, three double-digit targeted weeks, and two weeks scoring 17 (ish) Fantasy Points are all good signs that could combine in a solid matchup.

Buccaneers vs. Texans

  • Rachaad White: The Texans allow the 13th most Fantasy PPG to running backs this season. Rachaad White is coming off of back-to-back top 12 Fantasy performances with scores of 15.9 and 17.9 points in the last two weeks. A major push for Fantasy success in these last two games has been the high receiving volume and production, catching six passes for 65 yards in Week 7 and seven passes for 70 receiving yards in Week 8. White is also coming off of a season-high 82% of the snaps played and has yet to play under 70% of the snaps this season. Pass-catching running back with no backfield competition makes for a solid PPR play in a decent matchup.
  • CJ Stroud: The Buccaneers allow the 10th most Fantasy PPG to quarterbacks and the fifth most passing yards per game this season. CJ Stroud is coming off his worst Fantasy Football finish for the position this season (QB23), but we have seen plenty of good out of the rookie this year. Three weeks as a top 12 Fantasy quarterback, two games over 300 passing yards, and four games of multiple passing touchdowns. Stroud also has had two weeks throwing 44 and 47 times, showing Houston’s willingness to let him sling it. The weapons of Nico Collins, Tank Dell, and Dalton Schultz have also stepped up big for Stroud through the season. Stroud is due for a bounce-back week.

Cardinals vs. Browns

  • Trey McBride: The Browns are actually a really bad matchup for Fantasy tight ends this season, but I wanted to mention Trey McBride in this article and his upward trend. The snap percentage and targets were climbing in Week 5 and Week 6, Zach Ertz hit the IR and then McBride exploded in Week 8. 10 receptions on 14 targets for 95 yards and a touchdown for 25.5 Fantasy Points was a huge coming out party for McBride last week. I loved McBride as a prospect, who had a heavy pass-catching profile as a second-round selection out of Colorado State. Should McBride retain his current role, he has top-12 upside rest of the season. Rookie Clayton Tune is the starter this week, with Kyler Murray trending closer and closer toward a return.
  • Kareem Hunt: The Cardinals allow the third most Fantasy PPG to running backs this season. Following the BYE, Kareem Hunt has scored 16.1, 15.1 and 13.7 Fantasy Points which were RB12, RB14, and RB16 Fantasy finishes. The production has been guided by touchdown scoring, with four total and at least one rushing per game during this three-game span. Jerome Ford has been banged up with an ankle issue that continues to limit him. Hunt has had a three-game streak of useful production if you need a running back to plug in, and I like him again this week in a plus matchup. The Browns may end up beating up the Cardinals badly in this one, which could even more emphasize the ground game.

Colts vs. Panthers

  • Jonathan Taylor: The Panthers allow the second most Fantasy PPG to running backs and the fourth most rushing yards per game this season. Jonathan Taylor returned to football in Week 5 and started off the first two games playing behind Zack Moss in snap percentage. In the last two games, Taylor has played 50% then 61% of the snaps, still with Moss playing but trending towards that lead-back role. In Week 6 Taylor caught five passes for 46 yards and finished with 45 receiving yards as well in Week 7. On the ground in Week 7, we saw the Taylor we know, with him rushing 18 times for 75 yards and a touchdown, for 21 Fantasy Points. Down Week 8 in Fantasy scoring, but Taylor did rush 12 times for 95 yards (7.92 yards per carry). Great matchup and a great opportunity for Taylor to have another big 20+ Fantasy Point week.
  • Adam Thielen: The Colts are a middle-of-the-table sort of matchup against wide receivers, but Adam Thielen has to be mentioned with how great he has been this season. Thielen is averaging 10 targets, 8.1 receptions, 83 receiving yards, and 20.2 Fantasy PPG. Thielen is also 12th in yards after the catch, after ranking 39th or worse the prior four seasons. Thielen at 33 years old being the seventh-best wide receiver in Fantasy PPG through eight weeks was far from anyone’s expectation coming into 2023. Look for Thielen to continue rolling as a premier Fantasy wide receiver with rookie Bryce Young who he is beyond well-connected with.

Giants vs. Raiders

  • Saquon Barkley: The Raiders allow the fourth most Fantasy PPG to running backs and the third most rushing yards per game this season. Since returning from injury in Week 6, Saquon Barkley has looked more and more like the Saquon we know. 93 rushing yards in Week 6, 77 rushing yards paired with 41 receiving yards and a touchdown in Week 7 and then 128 rushing yards in Week 8. 28, 24 and a massive 41 touches the last three weeks is volume you have to love for the position in a league full of committees. Monitor Barkley’s ankle issue, but if he is good to go this could easily be a top-five scoring week for Fantasy.
  • Josh Jacobs: The Giants allow the ninth most Fantasy PPG to running backs and the ninth most rushing yards per game this season. Rookie Aidan O’Connell will be under center this week, so in a plus matchup on the ground it may be the smart route to utilize Josh Jacobs heavily in this one. Jacobs is coming off of a top-12 Fantasy week, rushing for 61 yards and a touchdown for 16.8 Fantasy Points. In Weeks 4 and 5, Jacobs looked to be catching stride with RB3 and RB6 Fantasy finishes in those two games. The last time O’Connell started, Jacobs finished the game with season highs in targets (11), receptions (8) and receiving yards (81). Jacobs should be a solid option for Week 9.

Cowboys vs. Eagles

  • CeeDee Lamb: The Eagles allow the most Fantasy PPG to wide receivers and the seventh most passing yards per game. Yes, the Eagles did go and trade for Kevin Byard and have had defensive injuries but that is still the fact as of today. CeeDee Lamb was off to a poor start vs. expectation but has been trending up the last two games played along with his quarterback Dak Prescott. Week 6 Lamb caught all seven targets for 117 receiving yards and scored 18.7 Fantasy Points as the WR11 that week. Week 7 was the BYE, and then Lamb absolutely exploded in Week 8. 12 catches on 14 targets for 158 receiving yards and two touchdowns for 41 Fantasy Points last week was huge as the week’s WR1 for Fantasy Football. Dak has been playing well, and will need to keep up with the Philadelphia offense, so look for Lamb to stay hot in a good matchup in Week 9.
  • Dallas Goedert: The Cowboys allow the 13th most Fantasy PPG to tight ends this season, and rank 22 to running backs and 31 to wide receivers in PPG allowed. Playing the matchup game here with Dallas Goedert. Across the last four weeks, Goedert has had Fantasy finishes as the TE2 and TE5 during this span. In those two specific games in Week 5 and Week 7, Goedert finished with 117 and 77 receiving yards with a touchdown in each of them which shows the upside he can bring. This should be a fun matchup that Jalen Hurts may need to lean on his tight end in.

Bills vs. Bengals (Sunday Night Football)

  • Dalton Kincaid: The Bengals allow the most Fantasy PPG to tight ends this season. 2023 first-round selection Dalton Kincaid has been great the last two games, finishing as the TE7 and TE8. Kincaid caught all eight targets in Week 7 for 75 receiving yards and scored 15.5 Fantasy Points in Week 7. Then in Week 8, Kincaid caught five of his seven targets for 65 yards and a touchdown for 17.5 Fantasy Points. Dawson Knox being out of the mix and on the IR does help, but give the rookie credit for his production. Kincaid played 84% of the snaps last week and should continue to be a big piece of this Bills offense in a great matchup.
  • Joe Mixon: The Bills allow the 12th most Fantasy PPG to running backs and the 11th most rushing yards per game this season. Following the Week 7 BYE, Joe Mixon had his best week of the season rushing 16 times for 87 yards and a touchdown and catching three passes for 20 Fantasy Points. Mixon has been fairly disappointing this season, but the Bengals offense has struggled for much of the year before looking fresh following the BYE. Mixon is without competition though which is a plus, as he has played 70%+ of the snaps in every game outside of Week 1. Monitor Mixon’s chest injury, but I like him to have another good week if healthy against the Bills.

Week 9 Fantasy Football Rankings: Quarterback | Running Back | Wide Receiver | Tight End | Half-PPR by Position | Flex Rankings | Positional Ranks w/ K & DST | Dynasty | Superflex Dynasty

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