Fantasy football Week 8 recap and waiver wire suggestions

Week 8 was a week of returns in a lot of ways.

First you had the return of Dez Bryant, who had his best game of the season after missing three contests, catching four passes for 113 yards and a touchdown.

Philadelphia Eagles free safety Rodney McLeod (23) and cornerback Nolan Carroll (22) defend as Dallas Cowboys wide receiver Dez Bryant (88) reaches up to catch a touchdown pass in the second half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Oct. 30, 2016, in Arlington, Texas. (AP Photo/Michael Ainsworth)
Philadelphia Eagles free safety Rodney McLeod (23) and cornerback Nolan Carroll (22) defend as Dallas Cowboys wide receiver Dez Bryant (88) reaches up to catch a touchdown pass in the second half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Oct. 30, 2016, in Arlington, Texas. (AP Photo/Michael Ainsworth)

Then you had the return of Tyler Eifert to full strength. The Bengals tight end played in the London game a week after playing limited snaps and caught nine passes for 102 yards and scored.

Another returning tight end, Jordan Reed, caught 9 passes for 99 yards and a touchdown after recovering from a concussion.

There was also the return of Josh McCown to the Browns lineup, and if you’re needing to stream your quarterback, he may be a decent option. He threw for 341 yards and two touchdowns.

Donte Moncrief, who was gone for five games, came back from injury to gain 41 yards and score a touchdown. His preseason ranking was pretty high and it’s possible he’ll produce like he was expected to before the injury.

Indianapolis Colts' Donte Moncrief (10) makes a three-yard touchdown catch against Kansas City Chiefs' Steven Nelson during the second half of an NFL football game Sunday, Oct. 30, 2016, in Indianapolis. (AP Photo/AJ Mast)
Indianapolis Colts’ Donte Moncrief (10) makes a three-yard touchdown catch against Kansas City Chiefs’ Steven Nelson during the second half of an NFL football game Sunday, Oct. 30, 2016, in Indianapolis. (AP Photo/AJ Mast)

Finally, you had the mutiple interception returns, including one 49-yarder for a touchdown, by the Broncos who topped all defenses in scoring this week. They also had four sacks.

Other top scorers were the triplets of Oakland. Derek Carr passed for a franchise record 513 yards and four scores. Amari Cooper and Michael Crabtree benefited mightily from Carr’s performance. Cooper had 12 catches for 173 yards and a touchdown. Crabtree had 8 catches for 108 yards.

Oakland Raiders wide receiver Amari Cooper (89) pulls in a 34-yard touchdown pass after getting past Tampa Bay Buccaneers strong safety Chris Conte (23) during the third quarter of an NFL football game Sunday, Oct. 30, 2016, in Tampa, Fla. (AP Photo/Phelan Ebenhack)
Oakland Raiders wide receiver Amari Cooper (89) pulls in a 34-yard touchdown pass after getting past Tampa Bay Buccaneers strong safety Chris Conte (23) during the third quarter of an NFL football game Sunday, Oct. 30, 2016, in Tampa, Fla. (AP Photo/Phelan Ebenhack)

As far as running backs, the Jets backfield was pretty impressive. Matt Forte had 82 yards rushing and two touchdowns while Bilal Powell rushed for 76 yards and scored. Don’t expect both to be good every week. They were facing the Browns.

On Thursday, DeMarco Murray continued to show last season was a fluke as he rushed for 123 yards and a touchdown.

Melvin Gordon is also proving that his scoreless rookie season was an anomaly. He rushed for 111 yards and caught four passes for an additional 44 yards. Despite not scoring, he has 10 touchdowns this year.

Running back Melvin Gordon #28 of the San Diego Chargers fights off cornerback Chris Harris #25 of the Denver Broncos in the fourth quarter of the game at Sports Authority Field at Mile High on October 30, 2016 in Denver, Colorado. (Photo by Dustin Bradford/Getty Images)
Running back Melvin Gordon #28 of the San Diego Chargers fights off cornerback Chris Harris #25 of the Denver Broncos in the fourth quarter of the game at Sports Authority Field at Mile High on October 30, 2016 in Denver, Colorado. (Photo by Dustin Bradford/Getty Images)

Theo Riddick seems to be in a perfect role for the Lions as he totaled 133 yards and caught a touchdown pass.

Devontae Booker had a nice start for the Broncos as he totaled 84 yards and scored.

Marcus Mariota stayed hot while Tom Brady and Aaron Rodgers did what you’re used to them doing. Brady connected with Rob Gronkowski as usual while Rodgers even led the Packers in rushing with 60 yards.

Speaking of the Packers, they were hit with some surprise inactives as Ty Montgomery and Randall Cobb were unable to play. Jordy Nelson benefited, catching four passes for 94 yards and a TD.

Other receivers with top performances were A.J. Green, Quincy Enunwa, J.J. Nelson, Allen Hurns and Jamison Crowder.

Some receiving duds were Mike Evans and Brandon Marshall. Both had great matchups but neither scored a TD or gained more than 68 yards.

Cleveland Browns' Joe Haden defends New York Jets' Brandon Marshall during the third quarter on Sunday, Oct. 30, 2016 at FirstEnergy Stadium in Cleveland, Ohio. The Browns lost the game 31-28. (Phil Masturzo/Akron Beacon Journal/TNS)
Cleveland Browns’ Joe Haden defends New York Jets’ Brandon Marshall during the third quarter on Sunday, Oct. 30, 2016 at FirstEnergy Stadium in Cleveland, Ohio. The Browns lost the game 31-28. (Phil Masturzo/Akron Beacon Journal/TNS)

Sadly, it’s time to realize Russell Wilson is not a good fantasy quarterback when he’s got limited mobility. Don’t start him again until he proves he can be productive.

Mark Ingram ended the day with a negative score after being benched for fumbling. You’ll notice his backup on the waiver wire suggestions.

Waiver wire suggestions:

Quarterbacks

Josh McCown, Cleveland (341 yards, 2TDs)
Nick Foles, Kansas City (223, 2)

Running backs

Tim Hightower, New Orleans (27-102)
Rob Kelley, Washington (21-87, TD)
Charcandrick West, Kansas City (16-60)
Dion Lewis, New England

Wide receivers

J.J. Nelson, Arizona (8-79, 2TDs)
Andrew Hawkins, Cleveland (5-31, 2TDs)
Tyreek Hill, Kansas City (5-98, TD)

Fantasy sleepers and lottery tickets

These next two weekends are the busiest in terms of fantasy drafts. It’s time to talk sleepers and lottery tickets.

Sleepers are those players that aren’t really on anyone’s radar, but can come through for you in the late rounds of your draft. Sleepers are all about finding that player who has the potential to significantly out-perform his draft position. You’re not drafting them to be your starters, but you can hope they’ll work their way into your lineup sooner rather than later.

Lottery tickets are players who, frankly, need the starter in front of them to go down with an injury or demotion in order to be productive.

Here’s a look at some of the potentially most productive sleepers and lottery tickets.

Looking for sleepers and lottery tickets for your fantasy football draft? Here are six possibilities for 2016 (clockwise, from top left): Bill quarterback Tyrod Taylor, Falcons backup running back Tevin Coleman, Rams receiver Tavon Austin, Cowboys tight end Jason Witten, Saints rookie receiver Michael Thomas and Bears receiver Kevin White.
Looking for sleepers and lottery tickets for your fantasy football draft? Here are six possibilities for 2016 (clockwise, from top left): Bills quarterback Tyrod Taylor, Falcons backup running back Tevin Coleman, Rams receiver Tavon Austin, Cowboys tight end Jason Witten, Saints rookie receiver Michael Thomas and Bears receiver Kevin White.

SLEEPERS

Kevin White, WR, Bears: He had high expectations before a stress fracture caused him to miss his entire rookie season. He’ll be Chicago’s No. 2 receiver behind Alshon Jeffery, who many fear might not hold up due to his soft tissue injury history. White’s been going around the eighth round in mock drafts, so he could be a WR3/WR4 that produces like a WR2 if things pan out.

Michael Thomas, WR, Saints: There are quality receivers in New Orleans, but Thomas could end up being worth a later-round pick if he continues to impress like he did in his first preseason game — four catches for 67 yards, though just one catch for five yards in his second game. He’s being drafted in the middle of the 10th round, so if he’s around at that point, you might as well snag him.

Tavon Austin, WR, Rams: I’m opening myself up for ridicule with this one, but he totaled over 900 yards of offense and had nine touchdowns last season. He’ll be nobody’s first, second or even third option, but it looks like he finally started to find ways to contribute last year. The Rams will need to lean heavy on Todd Gurley and find ways to continue to get the ball into Austin’s hands in a variety of ways. Going typically in the 11th round, you can afford to take a flyer on this guy.

Tyler Boyd, WR, Cincinnati: Another rookie that could end up contributing meaningful numbers. He’s had three catches for 78 yards and a touchdown so far this preseason. With little reason to believe in Brandon LaFell as a solid No. 2, Boyd could end up being A.J. Green’s lightly covered counterpart. He could be a steal in the 12th round.

Cincinnati Bengals wide receiver Tyler Boyd (83) catches a 12-yard touchdown pass as Detroit Lions defensive back Tavon Wilson (32) defends in the first half of an NFL preseason football game in Detroit, Thursday, Aug. 18, 2016. (AP Photo/Rick Osentoski)
Cincinnati Bengals wide receiver Tyler Boyd (83) catches a 12-yard touchdown pass as Detroit Lions defensive back Tavon Wilson (32) defends in the first half of an NFL preseason football game in Detroit, Thursday, Aug. 18, 2016. (AP Photo/Rick Osentoski)

Sammie Coates, WR, Steelers: He could end up filling the role vacated by Martavis Bryant, who’s suspended this season. Markus Wheaton has had ample opportunity to be the second option behind Antonio Brown, but has been passed up multiple times. Coates has been getting drafted around the 11th round, but you might even be able to get him in the 14th.

Tyrod Taylor, QB, Bills: With an ADP around the 10th round, he could be a nice insurance policy for whichever starter you pick before that. He accounted for 24 touchdowns and more than 3,500 yards last season while missing two games.

Jason Witten, TE, Cowboys: He’s been pretty consistent his entire career, gaining at least 700 yards every year after his rookie season. If you want to carry a second tight end, he could be had in later rounds. It could be one final solid season from the tight end and a healthy Tony Romo.

Charles Sims, RB, Buccaneers: Even with Doug Martin’s resurgent season, Sims had more than 1,000 yards of total offense. He’s getting drafted early in the ninth round and could be a nice flex player even with Martin as the lead back.

LOTTERY TICKETS

Tim Hightower, RB, Saints: He was one of the best running backs at the end of last year, gaining 456 total yards and scoring four touchdowns in the final four games. A pick in the 14th round could end up winning you the lottery.

Christine Michael, RB, Seahawks: Thomas Rawls was impressive last season, but 583 of his 803 rushing yards came in just four games. Michael has looked good in the preseason and might just need an opportunity. He’s going in the 10th round, but might be around in the 12th.

Seattle Seahawks running back Christine Michael is tackled by Minnesota Vikings safety Harrison Smith (22) in the first half of a preseason NFL football game, Thursday, Aug. 18, 2016, in Seattle. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)
Seattle Seahawks running back Christine Michael is tackled by Minnesota Vikings safety Harrison Smith (22) in the first half of a preseason NFL football game, Thursday, Aug. 18, 2016, in Seattle. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)

DeAndre Washington, RB, Raiders: Latavius Murray should be used heavily in Oakland, but Washington has shown flashes in the preseason. He could carve out a nice role for himself, but if Murray goes down, then he could really shine. His ADP is in the 11th, so it shouldn’t be too tough landing this potential lottery ticket.

Tevin Coleman, RB, Falcons: It was odd that Atlanta drafted him a year after taking Devonta Freeman. Freeman then went on to have a great year. I’m not sold on Freeman duplicating his early success last season. He rushed for more than 80 yards just twice in the final eight games. He scored just four touchdowns in that span. Coleman should be available in the middle of the ninth round.