Fantasy Football 2019: Players You Can Drop Before Week 9

Here is a list of players you can safely cut ties with ahead of Week 9.
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Fantasy Football: Baker Mayfield Week 8

Week 8 is in the books. It is now time for fantasy owners to drop certain underperforming players or players who have seen their roles change drastically. With eight weeks of data, fantasy owners have a large enough sample size to make informed decisions about which rostered players belong on the waiver wire.

The difference between winning a championship or not could be as small as a decision to drop a player that you thought was a sleeper, but turned out to be a bust. It’s been proven that the most dominant fantasy owners understand the importance of foresight. Sometimes, you simply have to move on, just as NFL teams move on from players throughout the season. We have already seen a number of teams do this, including the Titans making the switch from Marcus Mariota to Ryan Tannehill. You do not want to overreact to one week of poor statistics, such as Zach Ertz producing just two catches for 20 yards, as we predicted last week.

However, at the same time, don’t hold onto a player just because you are afraid to let go. Of course, fantasy owners also have to manage injuries and drop players who may not return in time to contribute to a postseason run. So without further ado, here are some players fantasy owners should not hesitate to drop after eight weeks of NFL action.

Quarterback

QB Baker Mayfield, Cleveland Browns

The time has officially arrived for fantasy owners to admit rostering Mayfield does not offer any upside and simply move on. The second-year quarterback, still owned in more than 72% of leagues, has failed to throw multiple touchdowns in any game this season. In Week 8 against the Patriots, it was clearly evident that his ailing hip is affecting his throwing motion and hindering his ability to effectively scramble from the pocket. Now Mayfield has called out his teammates for their lack of discipline.

Mayfield, who now has twice as many interceptions (12) as touchdowns (6) through seven games, is easily among the biggest busts in fantasy football this season. The schedule does not do the struggling signal caller any favors with tough matchups against the Broncos, Bills and Steelers in the next three weeks. Fantasy owners would be better served looking to the waiver wire and adding Titans QB Ryan Tannehill (available in more than 68% of leagues) or Oakland QB Derek Carr (available in more than 61% of leagues). Tannehill has five touchdown passes in two games since taking over for Marcus Mariota while Carr has nine touchdown passes in his last five games.

Running Backs

RB Giovani Bernard, Cincinnati Bengals

It is hard to believe fantasy owners continue to waste valuable roster space on players who should never be trusted in any fantasy lineups. Bernard, still owned in 36% of leagues, has just 80 yards rushing on the season. Drafted in PPR formats for his pass-catching value, Bernard has just 18 receptions for 126 yards in eight games. Trusting RB Joe Mixon or WR Tyler Boyd on a consistent basis is a risky proposition, so how can fantasy owners advocate holding onto Bernard? Owners should try acquiring Miami RB Mark Walton (available in more than 63% of leagues) off waivers after the trade of Kenyan Drake to Arizona on Monday.

RB Chris Thompson, Washington Redskins

Someone please explain to me how Chris Thompson is still owned in 57% of leagues? The oft-injured veteran running back has missed the last two weeks with a toe injury. Even if he is able to return in Week 9, he faces a brutal road matchup against a strong Buffalo Bills defense. Coming out of the bye in Week 11, the Redskins are expected to get Derrius Guice back from injured reserve

With Guice and Peterson both receiving significant touches, it is hard to endorse rostering Thompson when you look ahead to Washington’s upcoming schedule. The Redskins have difficult road games against the Panthers in Week 13, Packers in Week 14, followed by a home date with Philadelphia in Week 15. Since Thompson should never see any starting lineups in those weeks, owners should instead look to the aforementioned Walton or Pittsburgh’s Jaylen Samuels (owned in just 29% of leagues) who is expected to make his return in the next few weeks from a knee injury.

Wide Receivers

WR Demarcus Robinson, Kansas City Chiefs

With the return of Tyreek Hill and Sammy Watkins to the Chiefs, Robinson appears to be the odd man out behind rookie Mecole Hardman. The fourth-year wideout was great in Week 2 against the Raiders and solid in Week 3 against the Ravens, but less than average in the last four games, failing to top 31 yards receiving in those contests. Still owned in more than 52% of leagues, owners should cut ties with Robinson and turn their attention to Giants rookie Darius Slayton (owned in just 6% of leagues). Slayton was on the receiving end of two of Daniel Jones’ four touchdown passes in Week 8 against the Lions and has posted double-digit PPR performances in three-of-six games.

WR Jakobi Meyers New England Patriots

Jakobi Meyers’s fantasy relevance came to a crashing halt after the Patriots acquired veteran Mohammed Sanu last week to bolster their receiving corp. Meyers had been solid as a streaming option the past several weeks, producing nine receptions for 101 yards in games against the Giants and Jets. It is always a smart fantasy investment to speculate on players who run routes and catch passes from Tom Brady. 

However, Meyers belongs back on every waiver wire after the addition of Sanu. Fantasy owners in deeper leagues should perhaps speculate on Titans WR Tajae Sharpe (owned in less than 2% of leagues). The fourth-year wide receiver seems to have a rapport with Ryan Tannehill, securing touchdowns in back-to-back games. The Titans have some extremely favorable matchups down the stretch. 

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