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Free Agent Focus

Week 9 IDP Free Agent Focus

By Matt Schauf 9:45pm EDT 10/31/21

Randy Gregory, DE, Cowboys

If Gregory made it to Sunday night without getting picked up in your league, then make sure he doesn't keep floating free for another week. Back to full health for the 1st time since Week 3, Gregory delivered his 5th sack of the year among 3 QB hits vs. Minnesota. He now has 11 hits over just his past 4 games, with at least 2 in each of those contests. Next up: a Denver offense that has spent the year among the league leaders in pressure rate allowed.

Everson Griffen, DE, Vikings

Griffen's fantasy production has been -- and will likely continue to be -- inconsistent. But he topped 80% playing time for the 2nd straight game in Sunday night's loss to the Cowboys. Minnesota lost DE Danielle Hunter in that game to what the team fears is a torn pectoral muscle. That would end Hunter's season, and likely leave Griffen as the lead pass rusher.

Jerry Tillery, DL, Chargers

Tillery notched just his 2nd full sack of the season in Sunday’s loss to the Patriots, giving him 2.5 through 7 games. But Tillery has finished only 1 game without at least 1 QB hit. Week 9 brings a matchup with the Eagles, who entered Week 8 allowing the league’s 9th-highest pressure rate, according to Pro Football Reference.

Christian Barmore, DT, Patriots

The New England rookie will make sense for DT-specific slots in Week 9. He has topped 50% playing time in 5 straight contests now and delivered QB hits in 3 consecutive outings. Next Sunday will find him taking on a Panthers offense that hit Week 8 supplying the league’s most fantasy points per game to D-linemen.

Ernest Jones, LB, Rams

It appears the Rams felt ready to trade Kenny Young away so that they could give this rookie a full-time gig. Jones played 54 of L.A.’s 61 defensive snaps. Fellow starter Troy Reeder played just 39. And Jones produced: a team-high 9 tackles (7 solo), a half-sack among 2 QB hits and an INT. It’s tough to imagine that starting debut not keeping him on the field.

Jayon Brown, LB, Titans

Tennessee designated Brown to return from IR last week, but he didn’t make it back to the active roster ahead of Sunday. That should come soon, though -- perhaps as soon as Sunday night against the Rams. It still remains to be seen exactly what role he’ll return to, but the Colts were the 2nd opponent to score 31 on the Titans within the past 3 games. So a healthy Brown should be able to find a starting spot.

Baron Browning, LB, Broncos

Denver not only added newly acquired LB Kenny Young to the lineup for Sunday’s win over Washington. The Broncos also gave their 3rd-round rookie his 1st start and removed Justin Strnad from the lineup. Browning played 97% of the snaps, according to Pro Football Focus, and led the team with 8 tackles, including 1 for a loss. Young played just 56%. Next comes a visit to Dallas, which has been a top-8 scoring matchup for LBs.

T.J. Edwards, LB, Eagles

Philly yanked Alex Singleton from the starting lineup in Sunday’s win over the Lions. Edwards started in his place and racked up 13 tackles. We can only assume for now that Edwards has earned at least 1 more start in what has been a high-volume spot for tackle collection all season. Be careful, though. Edwards did lead Eagles LBs in snaps but spent just 66% of them on the field.

DeAndre Houston-Carson, S, Bears

S Eddie Jackson left Sunday’s game with a hamstring injury, allowing Houston-Carson to step in and lead the Bears in tackles. DHC also collected 11 tackles the week before against Tampa Bay, when he started in place of Tashaun Gipson. If Jackson isn’t ready for the Monday night trip to Pittsburgh in Week 9, Houston-Carson would be a solid DB2 for IDP lineups.

Andrew Sendejo, S, Colts

Indy lost S Khari Willis to a calf injury in Sunday’s OT loss to the Titans. We’ll see how serious the issue is, but the Colts play the Jets on Thursday night. That quick turnaround will challenge Willis’ ability to make it back. Sendejo tied for 3rd among Colts in tackles at Tennessee with 8 (6 solo). He'll be in the lineup regardless of Willis' status, as the fill-in for FS Julian Blackmon (on IR with Achilles' tear).

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