By Ryan Weisse
It’s been nine weeks. Nine long weeks, but we finally have something in Pick ‘Em Up that we haven’t had this season: A group headlined by TEs. It is very likely that just four teams in your league are/were happy about their TE spot (I’ll put George Kittle managers firmly in the “were” spot) and it’s just as likely that they have turned their positional advantage into a possible playoff spot. Meanwhile, the rest of us slum along, moving from TE to TE like some cheap — never mind, let’s keep this article PG. Before we talk about the TEs, I’d like to make a quick, bold, loud PSA:
GO. SIGN. JALEN. REAGOR. RIGHT. NOW.
I said it in last week’s article. I said it during last week’s show. I said it on the dynasty show. I’ve probably said it just about any place that you’ve seen or heard me in the last 10 days. This is your last chance — you’ve been warned.
PRO TIP: Always look at last week’s bye week teams for good players that may have been dropped out of desperation. Week 9 was Cincinnati, Cleveland, LA Rams, and Philadelphia (Jalen Reagor).
Drew Lock (80% Available)
Drew Lock makes the list for the 2nd week in a row and I completely understand why. He has far more bad games than good this season and looked like he might even let the cupcake matchup with Atlanta slip through his fingers. Instead, he had a great 2nd half and finished as a top-5 fantasy QB. This week, he gets Las Vegas, who give up the 9th most points to fantasy QBs, and then Miami, who just gave up the #1 week to Kyler Murray. He still feels like a desperation play but his next two games might make up for that.
Baker Mayfield (67% Available)
Baker is currently on the COVID-IR as a “close-contact” precaution but should be fine for Week 10. The Browns play Houston who just got TORCHED by Jake Luton. Say what you will about Baker Mayfield, but I think he can top Jake Luton and the Jacksonville Jaguars. The Browns will also get Nick Chubb and Austin Hooper back for this game. While some will see this as a likelihood of more running, I see it as more threats and more freedom for Mayfield. I won’t speak to his longevity, but Baker will be a top-10 QB in Week 10.
Duke Johnson (84% Available)
David Johnson suffered a concussion this week and that means his Week 10 availability is in jeopardy (RIP Alex Trebek). Duke used David’s absence to accumulate 73 scrimmage yards and score a TD in Week 9. If you believe in the “revenge-game” narrative, which has been hit or miss this season, this falls firmly into that category. He might only be good for one week, but Duke Johnson has a good chance at the Week 10 top-20 if David Johnson is out.
Wayne Gallman (75% Available)
Devonta Freeman hasn’t been all that impressive in his time with the Giants and Gallman has looked solid while Freeman has been hurt. There are no guarantees that Freeman misses Week 10…but there are also no guarantees he even gets his job back. Gallman has more yards, more TDs, and a better YPC than Freeman on the season and the Giants get Philly’s highly questionable defense in Week 10. New York does have a Week 11 bye, so this is again another one-week rental…you see why TEs are the headliners this week?
J.D. McKissic (76% Available)
McKissic might be the most consistent player on this RB list. Despite the emergence of Antonio Gibson, McKissic continues to be involved in this offense, especially in the passing game. In Week 9, he was targeted 14 times. That was not a typo, he caught nine balls on 14 targets. He is on pace for 94 targets on the season. McKissic should be rostered in all PPR formats and has legit Flex value for the rest of the season seeing as Washington has already had their bye.
Gus Edwards (63% Available)
It’s safe to assume that Mark Ingram will be back at some point this season but Edwards deserves a roster spot in deeper leagues, regardless. Over the Ravens’ last three games, Gus has turned 41 carries into 136 rushing yards and three TDs. He even added two receptions in Week 9. His role is far from guaranteed when Ingram is healthy but if Week 10 presents a bye week issue for you at RB, he’s a good gamble to score a TD against New England.
Jalen Reagor (76% Available)
This is officially me beating a dead horse. Please go sign him before PETA locks me up. Just to reiterate for those that have not been paying attention: Philly has the best schedule for fantasy WRs from Week 10-16. Reagor is going to be a solid WR3 with WR1 upside for the rest of the season. He is going to get you into your playoffs and then win you a championship, Thank me later.
Sterling Shepard (50% Available)
Shepard is a target hog on a team that will throw the ball a lot. What more do you want from a fantasy WR? He has played in five games this season and saw 36 targets in those games. He is averaging eight targets per game since returning from the IR and, as mentioned above, the Giants get a suspect Philly defense in Week 10. Again, they also have a bye in Week 11, but Shepard should stay on your roster during that bye.
Curtis Samuel (70% Available)
There were worries about his usage once CMC came back but Samuel just had his best game of the season. He secured all nine balls thrown his way and scored a TD against a stout KC defense. There will always be some risk, seeing as he is the 4th option on his own team, but he can be treated as a good-upside WR3 for those with WR woes.
Dallas Goedert (45% Available)
While the Eagles should just throw the ball to Jalen Reagor on every play, they probably won’t and Goedert has top-10 potential moving forward this season. His Week 8 dud and Week 9 bye are the only reasons he’s available at all, but if you lost George Kittle, this is the TE you are looking for. In the first two games this season, Goedert was targeted 17 times and caught 12 balls for 131 yards and a TD. That was with Zach Ertz on the field. Ertz will miss at least another two games and Goedert should be back to 100% after a week off.
Austin Hooper (61% Available)
This offense loves their TEs and things got more interesting when OBJ went down for the season. Hooper faces stiff competition from rookie Harrison Bryant but will easily get his job back and should be more involved than what we saw earlier this season. Browns TEs are averaging 11.9 fantasy points over their last three games and Bryant was the TE10 during that span. Hooper should slide right into that role against Houston in Week 10.
Jordan Reed (77% Available)
Week 9 was a disappointment for anyone that plugged Reed in expecting 49ers TE1 production. The cards were stacked against him though. It was a short week against a decent defense with a depleted offense and a backup QB. Some of those things will be fixed in Week 10, namely, it won’t be a short week and they are not playing against a good defense, at least not against fantasy TEs. The 49ers get the Saints, who routinely give up top-5 weeks to TEs, before hitting their Week 11 bye, so you’ll know if you should hold or fold on Reed after this weekend.
Jimmy Graham (51% Available)
There was a time that Jordan Reed and Jimmy Graham were two of the best fantasy TEs in the league…now they are the princes of the waiver wire and kings to those that stream TEs. Graham has been quietly solid this season and should not be available in this many leagues. He has seen 5+ targets in every game but one this year and is the TE6 on the season. Read that again. Jimmy Graham is fantasy’s TE6 and he is available in more than half of leagues. Get it together people!