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Week 8 Free Agent Focus

By Alex Korff | Updated on Tue, 23 May 2023 . 1:27 PM EDT

Derek Carr, QB, Raiders

Blind-bid recommendation: 5-12%

He did well to post a 284-2-1 passing line Sunday vs. a Bucs defense that gave Aaron Rodgers all sorts of trouble last week. Even his INT bounced off a receiver's hands.

It marked Carr’s 5th straight game with multiple TDs, including a pair of 3-TD outings. Now he gets a soft stretch of schedule: Browns, Chargers, Broncos, Chiefs, Falcons, Jets.

Carr could very well be a top-12 fantasy QB the rest of the way.

Teddy Bridgewater, QB, Panthers

Blind-bid recommendation: 3-5%

Bridgewater turned in another solid outing Sunday, throwing for 254 yards and 2 scores and running for 10 more yards. That gives him multiple TDs in 3 of his last 4 games.

He’ll be a nice Week 8 spot starter against a Falcons defense that entered this week ranked dead last in adjusted fantasy points allowed to QBs. That includes allowing a 313-2-0 passing line to Bridgewater back in Week 5.

Jimmy Garoppolo, QB, 49ers

Blind-bid recommendation: 2-3%

Garoppolo finished with 277 scoreless yards Sunday but completed 20 of 25 passes. He’s now connected on 83% of his throws in 2 games since that dud vs. Miami.

More importantly, Garoppolo gets a pathetic Seahawks defense in Week 8. That’ll put him squarely on the spot-start radar.

Tevin Coleman, RB, 49ers

Blind-bid recommendation: 30-50%

We don't know yet whether Coleman will be ready for Sunday's game against the Seahawks. HC Kyle Shanahn said Saturday that Coleman has an "outside chance" of returning from his knee sprain in Week 8. So he's probably not your best option if you're seeking immediate help.

But the past 2 weeks have seen the 49ers place Raheem Mostert on IR and then lose Jeff Wilson Jr. to a high-ankle sprain. That leaves undrafted rookie JaMycal Hasty as the apparent backfield leader until Coleman returns. Jerick McKinnon followed an 8-touch Week 6 by trailing Kyle Juszczyk in touches against New England.

Unless Hasty gets the backfield to himself in Week 8 and wows, this looks like a situation Coleman should lead after he returns. He's currently available in 80% of ESPN leagues. Stash Coleman where you can.

Jamaal Williams, RB, Packers

Blind-bid recommendation: 25-40%

Williams hit Sunday owned in less than half of ESPN leagues. He finished the day with 19-77-1 rushing and 4-37 receiving in the win over Houston.

Even if Aaron Jones returns for Week 8, Williams will be worth keeping on rosters. Sunday confirmed what we already suspected: He’s clearly ahead of rookie AJ Dillon on the depth chart. (Dillon logged just 5 carries for 11 yards.)

Carlos Hyde, RB, Seahawks

Blind-bid recommendation: 20-40%

We'll see about the severity of Chris Carson's foot injury and how long he'll be sidelined. Hyde figures to step in as Seattle's lead back if Carson misses more time, though. After Carson left Sunday night game vs. Arizona, Hyde carried 12 times and saw 3 targets. Seattle's other RBs combined for 3 carries and 2 targets. Week 8 brings a tough draw vs. the 49ers, before neutral matchups the following 3 weeks vs. the Bills, Rams and Cardinals.

Boston Scott, RB, Eagles

Blind-bid recommendation: 20-30%

Scott was quiet for most of Thursday night’s win over the Giants but made the game-winning 18-yard TD catch with less than a minute left. More importantly, Scott handled 12 of Philly’s 16 RB carries and 5 of 7 RB targets.

He’ll be a nice RB2 play vs. Dallas this coming week if Miles Sanders sits again.

Gio Bernard, RB, Bengals

Blind-bid recommendation: 20-30%

He operated as Cincinnati’s feature back Sunday, handling 13 of 14 RB carries and 5 of 6 RB targets. Bernard totaled 96 yards and a score. With Joe Mixon week to week with his foot injury, Bernard could get another start next Sunday vs. Tennessee.

He remains available in about half of ESPN leagues.

JaMycal Hasty, RB, 49ers

Blind-bid recommendation: 10-20%

Already without Raheem Mostert and Tevin Coleman, San Francisco lost Jeff Wilson to an ankle injury on Sunday. After Wilson left after his 3rd TD, Hasty out-carried Jerick McKinnon 8 to 3. Hasty took 9 total carries for 57 yards after carrying 9 times for 37 yards last week. He might be San Francisco’s lead back vs. the Seahawks next Sunday.

Brandon Aiyuk, WR, 49ers

Blind-bid recommendation: 15-25%

Three reasons to add this rookie, who’s available in 80% of ESPN leagues:

1. He went for 115 yards on 6 catches in Sunday’s win over the Patriots.
2. WR Deebo Samuel left the game with a hamstring injury, making him iffy for Week 8.
3. Aiyuk gets the Seahawks’ league-worst WR defense next Sunday.

Sterling Shepard, WR, Giants

Blind-bid recommendation: 10-15%

He posted a 6-59-1 line on 8 targets in his return from a 4-game absence on Thursday night. Shepard hauled in all 6 of his looks in his only other full outing this season and has now seen 6+ targets in 18 straight healthy games dating back to November of 2018.

Cole Beasley, WR, Bills

Blind-bid recommendation: 8-12%

He racked up 11 catches on 12 targets for 112 yards in Sunday's win over the Jets, leading the team in all 3 categories. It was easily Beasley’s biggest game of the season, but he’s also now tallied 4+ catches in 6 of 7 games.

He’s worth having around in PPR leagues, especially if WR John Brown continues to miss time.

Corey Davis, WR, Titans

Blind-bid recommendation: 8-12%

In his first game back from the reserve/COVID-19 list, Davis snagged 6 of 10 targets for 35 yards and 1 score against the Steelers. His 10 targets represented a 33.3% share on a day the team fired off only 56 offensive plays.

He’s now reached 5 catches in 3 of 4 healthy games. Even with this Tennessee offense at full strength, Davis will have spot-start value next week at Cincinnati. Then comes a tough stretch of Chicago, Indianapolis, Baltimore and Indianapolis.

Randall Cobb, WR, Texans

Blind-bid recommendation: 5-10%

Cobb led Houston in targets (10), receptions (8) and receiving yards (95) in Sunday’s loss to the Packers. That marked Cobb’s 2nd game of 6+ catches among the past 3 and 4th game this season with at least 4 catches. He’s not an every-week starter, but Cobb should at least be in the WR4 mix on a weekly basis.

And after a Week 8 bye comes upside matchups with Jacksonville and Cleveland. Cobb entered Week 7 owned in less than 15% of ESPN leagues.

Richard Rodgers, TE, Eagles

Blind-bid recommendation: 5-10%

Dallas Goedert and Zach Ertz will miss at least Week 8 with their ankle injuries. (Goedert reportedly has a shot to return after the Week 9 bye.) That means at least 1 more start for Rodgers, who led the Eagles with 6 catches and 85 yards in Thursday night’s win. His 8 targets trailed only WR Travis Fulgham’s 11. Rodgers will be squarely in the TE1 mix against the Cowboys this coming week.

Harrison Bryant, TE, Browns

Blind-bid recommendation: 2-3%

The rookie took advantage of TE Austin Hooper’s absence Sunday, hauling in 4 of 5 targets for 56 yards and 2 TDs. Hooper seems very iffy for next weekend’s game against the Raiders after undergoing an appendectomy on Friday. If he sits, Bryant will be an intriguing spot starter.

Deep-League Options:

Wayne Gallman, RB, Giants

Blind-bid recommendation: 15-25%

Devonta Freeman exited Thursday night’s game with an ankle injury, leaving Gallman as New York’s lead back. He turned 10 carries into 34 yards and a score, adding 5 catches on 5 targets for 20 yards. There’s little upside here, especially in a Week 8 matchup vs. the Bucs. But any RB we can project for 15+ touches is worth something.

Nelson Agholor, WR, Raiders

Blind-bid recommendation: 5-10%

He’s having a bit of a renaissance this year. Agholor posted a big 5-107-1 line in Sunday’s loss to the Bucs. The 5 catches and 107 yards were season highs, but Agholor has now scored in 3 straight. We’re not yet ready to fully trust him, but Agholor might be worth stashing with a nice string of matchups on tap.

Rashard Higgins, WR, Browns

Blind-bid recommendation: 5-10%

He looks like Cleveland’s #2 WR moving forward, assuming Odell Beckham is done for the year. Higgins hauled in all 6 of his targets for 100 yards in Sunday’s win over the Bengals. Week 8 brings a plus matchup vs. the Raiders, so we’ll get an immediate idea of Higgins’ upside.

Deonte Harris, WR, Saints

Blind-bid recommendation: 2-5%

Harris hauled in 4 of 5 targets for 46 yards and a score in Sunday’s win over the Panthers. With Michael Thomas, Emmanuel Sanders and Marquez Callaway iffy for Week 8, Harris might play an even bigger role against the Bears.

Other rankings are stale  before the 2nd round.

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