We’re over the halfway mark, and it’s time to start prepping your roster for a playoff run. We’ll be looking for upside for your bench in our stashes and the usual unexpected starters in our streaming sections. With the Chiefs, Dolphins, Eagles and Rams meaning plenty of studs we’ll be on byes, there will be plenty of need for alternatives. Good luck this week!
To keep things simple, we’ll define a streamer as any player you wouldn’t usually start who is a viable option for this week. We’ll define a stash as any player you can probably find on waivers that you should stash for the future, either because they have a favorable match-up coming up or because they could become a future starter.
I’ll also be reporting my streamer record from the season to date above each section to give you an idea of what to expect. Strong finishes mean the top third of starters at the position, moderate means the top half of starters, and bust is everyone else.
QB Streamer (Week 1: 10 strong, 4 moderate, 8 bust):
Jared Goff (DET): Coming off a bye week, the Lions take on a Chargers defense that has conceded the most fantasy points to opposing quarterbacks. While it’s possible the return of David Montgomery leads to a pass-heavy approach, with Patrick Mahomes, Jalen Hurts, and Tua Tagovailoa on bye weeks, you probably can’t be too picky.
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Justin Fields (CHI): It’s possible Fields is available on waivers after his extended layoff, and if he is, he’s definitely worth picking up. But I wouldn’t be starting him just yet. The Bears take on a Panthers team that opponents usually don’t need to throw on, so I’d recommend holding him to ensure he’s healthy.
RB Streamers (Week 2: 20 strong, 8 moderate, 8 bust):
D’Onta Foreman (CHI): While the imminent return of Khalil Herbert will put a dampener on the Foreman hype against the Panthers, he’s a solid start, regardless of whether Herbert returns. He had 20 of the 23 Bears rushes in Week 9 and was the clear lead running back, despite the anticipated emergence of Roschon Johnson.
Najee Harris and Jaylen Warren (PIT): The Packers have typically been an excellent matchup for opposing running backs (when their quarterback is at least functional, i.e., not Brett Rypien). We saw both Harris and Warren put in strong performances against the Titans during TNF, so it’s not hard to see both being productive in Week 10 too.
Keaton Mitchell (BAL): The Ravens rookie had a breakout Week 9 performance, turning nine carries into 138 yards and a touchdown. But he’s far from a sure thing in what looks like a committee, with Justice Hill still the passing down back and Gus Edwards the clear goal line back. I don’t want to start any of these three despite the juicy matchup until we know what the snap split will be moving forward.
Running backs get injured more than any other position in fantasy, with the average Top 36 running back missing two games per season in fantasy. For that reason, your best bet in fantasy is to roster running backs who are an injury away from an every-down role. While I can’t predict who will get injured, I can say who’ll be most effective when given the opportunity. Each week, I’ll be listing my favorite RB backups, only including players you won’t be starting most weeks.
Handcuffs: Zach Charbonnet (SEA), Tyler Allgeier (ATL), Joshua Kelley (LAC), AJ Dillon (GB), Tyjae Spears (TEN), Rico Dowdle (DAL), Kenneth Gainwell (PHI), Ezekiel Elliott (NE), Tank Bigsby (JAC) and Ty Chandler (MIN).
WR Streamers (14 strong, 16 moderate, 9 bust):
Jahan Dotson (WAS): After consecutive top 10 fantasy finishes, Dotson has gone from a bust to a borderline must-start. Against the Seahawks, I’m certainly putting him in my lineup, though the return of Curtis Samuel would cause me a little concern, so keep that in mind.
Jaxon Smith-Njigba (SEA): I expect this matchup could be a bit of a shootout, with the Commanders still boasting one of the league’s most porous secondaries and the Seahawks conceding a lot of points recently. JSN has finally started to show the skills that made him a first-round pick back in April, so while DK Metcalf and Tyler Lockett are strong starts, the rookie is also a viable option if you need to look deep.
Zay Jones (JAC): If your league lacks IR spots, there’s a good chance Jones is available after playing only two full games this season. Coming out of the Jaguars’ bye week, it’s possible Jones returns to the lineup, but it’s too early to confidently start him. In Week 1, he was playing ahead of Christian Kirk in 12 personnel, but Kirk has boomed in Jones’ absence making the slot receiver far harder to take off the field.
TE Streamer (9 strong, 2 moderate, 8 bust):
Trey McBride (ARI): I’m not giving up on the second-year Cardinal just yet. If Kyler Murray returns, McBride is a viable streamer against a Falcons side most susceptible over the middle. I wouldn’t trust him if Clayton Tune remains the starter in Week 10 though.
Daniel Bellinger (NYG): With Darren Waller out, Bellinger is as close to an every-down tight end as you’ll find on waivers. We don’t yet know who will be under center for the rest of the season and what their passing tendencies are, but it’s worth picking up a player who is at least on the field the majority of the time.
K/DST Streamers (16 strong, 8 moderate, 10 bust):
Please note I won’t be listing any kicker or DST stashes, as you should never roster more than one of either of these positions.