Week 8 was met with plenty of big performances and spot starts. Backs like Gus Edwards, DeeJay Dallas, Jamaal Williams, Boston Scott and Jamichael Hasty were all plug and play guys due to injury. This week most of the lead backs on those teams are set to slot back in, leaving the waiver wire as more of a wait and see scenario. Here are the players that I elect for you to pick up.
Troymaine Pope- Since Austin Ekeler’s injury in Week 4, the Chargers have employed a timeshare between rookie Joshua Kelley and veteran Justin Jackson. Week 8 against Denver added another back to the mix, Troymaine Pope. Pope received 10 carries for 67 yards and along with seven targets for five catches and 28 yards. This compares to Kelley, seven carries for 32 and Jackson 17 carries for 89 along with three catches for 53. Jackson received a majority of the work gobbling up 47 percent of snaps compared to Pope’s 29 percent. With Ekeler remaining out for the coming weeks, Pope may be a player to keep your eye on.
Scoville Units: Anaheim- 750
Gus Edwards- Touches in the Ravens backfield are always a toss-up. There is just too much talent to always predict where the touchdowns are going to go. Going into the season Mark Ingram had a lead back outlook with JK Dobbins and Edwards stealing time here and there. Unfortunately in Week 6, Ingram suffered a high ankle sprain, leaving the already murky backfield up for grabs. In Week 8 against the Steelers, Dobbins and Edwards both received work netting 67 and 32 percent of snaps respectively. With Edwards going for 16 carries, 87 yards and a score against a tough Steelers front, look for another plug-and-play week for the Gus Bus.
Scoville Units: Hungarian- 5,500
Darnell Mooney- The Chicago Bears have been a very up and down team, mostly due to their quarterback play. They signed Nick Foles to a major contract only for him to make a minor positive impact on the offense. However, Foles does show plenty of flashes, especially down the stretch. Mooney is one of the main beneficiaries of that talent. Last week against the Saints, Mooney hauled in five of six targets for 69 yards and a touchdown. Along with this notable performance, the Bears have two promising matchups coming up against the Titans and the Vikings. Mooney is talented and sometimes you need to buy talent.
Scoville Units: Red Savina Habanero- 575,000
Kendrick Bourne- Once again this has been a season of injuries on top of injuries and no team has suffered more than the San Francisco 49ers. With Deebo Samuel out against the Seahawks, Bourne was a favorable play catching eight balls for 81 yards. Add George Kittle, the most popular target on the team, to the injury report and there are even more targets to go around. The ball needs to go somewhere and that is into the hands of Bourne and Brandon Aiyuk.
Scoville Units: Fatali- 325,000
Jordan Reed/Ross Dwelley- Along the same lines as Kendrick Bourne, the eight week Kittle injury impacts the tight ends even more. No matter who is quarterbacking for the 49ers, the tight end will always be schemed to be used in some way. There are plenty of targets to go around, so look for the number one tight end on the team to be a huge play. Reed is most likely going to get the work, but fresh off the IR they might not throw him straight into the fire.
Scoville Units: Ghost Pepper- 1,041,000
Honorable Mention- Tyler Earvin and Dexter Williams, if Aaron Jones misses.