If you’re on the outside looking in at your fantasy football league’s playoff picture, don’t worry. Not all hope is lost.
Despite the regular season being over halfway complete — scary, we know — there still are plenty of players available on the waiver wire who can provide the spark you might need to enter the postseason conversation.
With that in mind, here are waiver-wire options to consider at each position among players who currently are rostered in 65 percent or less of Yahoo! fantasy football leagues.
Quarterback: Derek Carr, Oakland Raiders (26 percent owned in Yahoo! leagues)
Carr actually is having an OK season and the Raiders only are a game below .500 entering Week 9. The veteran QB posted one of his better performances of the season Sunday against a fairly strong Houston Texans defense, completing 18 of 30 passes for 285 yards with three touchdowns and no interceptions. Carr’s next challenge will be the Detroit Lions, who just allowed 322 passing yards and four (!) touchdowns to rookie Daniel Jones at home. With Tyrell Williams back in the mix and a fully healthy offensive line, Carr could be in line for a big performance this week.
Other quarterbacks to target: Jimmy Garoppolo (SF), Sam Darnold (NYJ)
Running Back: Kenyan Drake, Arizona Cardinals (62 percent owned)
It’s been somewhat of a merry-go-round at running back for the Cardinals this season, and Drake appears to be the next man up. Arizona acquired the veteran running back from the Miami Dolphins this week as David Johnson and Chase Edmonds deal with injuries. Yes, Arizona probably is bound for a lopsided loss Thursday night when it hosts the undefeated San Francisco 49ers, but Drake still should see a high number of touches and is a prime candidate for garbage-time points. His dual-threat abilities also should allow him to be somewhat of a safety blanket for Kyler Murray.
Other running backs to pursue: Mark Walton (MIA), Tarik Cohen (CHI), J.D. McKissic (DET)
Wide Receiver: DeSean Jackson, Philadelphia Eagles (59 percent owned)
Jackson, who’s been sidelined with an abdomen injury since Week 2, looks on pace to return Sunday when the Eagles host the Chicago Bears. The veteran wideout stuffed the stat sheet in his only real outing this season, catching eight passes for 154 yards with two touchdowns back in Week 1. The Bears obviously feature one of the NFL’s stronger defenses, but Chicago has started to show some cracks as the season has progressed. Even if Jackson lays an egg in Week 9, we still recommend scooping him up while you can. It never hurts to have a chunk-play machine on your roster, especially during the home stretch.
Other wide receivers to target: Jamison Crowder (NYJ), Corey Davis (TEN), Jaron Brown (SEA)
Tight End: Darren Fells, Houston Texans (20 percent owned)
Fells has been a sneaky favorite target of Deshaun Watson this season. The veteran tight end posted his best game of the season in Week 8, catching six passes for 58 yards with two touchdowns in a narrow win over the Raiders. With Will Fuller V now sidelined for the time being, Fells should continue to see a fair number of targets on a week-to-week basis. He isn’t a world-beater by any stretch of the imagination, but you’re probably not going to find many, if any, better options for the position at this stage in the season.
Other tight ends to pursue: Vance McDonald (PIT)