Fantasy Football Week 9 Running Back Waiver Wire Pickups: Damien Harris, Gus Edwards, More

Damien Harris

Another week of fantasy football action is in the books, as owners everywhere scour the waiver wire to find the best available running back pickups. Looking around the league shows that players like Damien Harris and Gus Edwards offer the best chance of positive performance in the coming weeks.

Note that, in order to be eligible for this list, the player needed to be available in at least 50% of fantasy leagues. Obviously, there is some variation from league to league, so make sure to peruse all available players before making your claims. There could be a better option available in your specific league.

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Damien Harris, Gus Edwards Highlight Fantasy Football Week 9 Running Back Waiver Wire Pickups

Damien Harris

Somehow, New England Patriots running back Damien Harris is still available in 70% of ESPN leagues. Had I known this, he would’ve been much higher on this list last week. Harris isn’t going to make too many plays in the passing game, but he’s the unquestioned early-down runner on one of the most run-heavy teams in football.

Last week, Harris handled the ball 16 times for 102 yards and a touchdown during New England’s 24-21 loss to the Buffalo Bills. The Patriots have one of the best offensive lines in football, and Cam Newton’s presence makes the run game even harder to defend. The Patriots face off against an absolutely atrocious New York Jets team and should spent most of the evening running out the clock. Harris is a lock for 15-20 carries and should be pretty efficient with his touches.

Gus Edwards

According to ESPN’s Adam Schefter, Baltimore Ravens running back Mark Ingram could miss another week or two of action. The longtime NFL veteran was part of a three-headed committee when on the field, and that even split effectively ruined the fantasy values of Ingram, J.K. Dobbins, and Gus Edwards. However, now that Ingram is out of the picture, Dobbins and Edwards can thrive.

Chances are, Dobbins isn’t available in your league. If he is, you should prioritize him. However, in the likely event that he’s not available, go after Gus Edwards. The Ravens clearly want to use both of their running backs, as Edwards had 15 carries to Dobbins’ 16 and managed to be pretty efficient with his opportunities. Assuming Ingram cannot go, he should be another safe flex play.

Troymaine Pope

Running backs are hard to find in fantasy football, and the Los Angeles Chargers backfield is an absolute mess. However, there is a chance that Troymaine Pope earns a role in this rushing attack. With Austin Ekeler sidelined and Justin Jackson and Joshua Kelley failing to impress, Pope earned a decent amount of playing time in Week 8. He made his opportunity count, recording 67 rushing yards on 10 carries to go along with 28 receiving yards on five receptions.

Chances are, Pope won’t turn into anything more than a very, very low-end RB3. However, there is a chance that he takes control of this backfield until Ekeler returns from his injury. That possibility alone makes him worth a pickup, as the starting running back in this offense will carry fantasy value. Put in a claim if you’re in a deeper league, but do it with the understanding that Pope probably won’t turn into a diamond in the rough.

Cam Akers

The Los Angeles Rams backfield is an absolute mess, and Cam Akers could be the odd-man out in this rotation. However, the rookie second-round pick finally made his way onto the field in Week 8, and managed to put together some good film when he had the ball. Despite an unfavorable game script, Akers ended the night with 35 rushing yards on nine carries to go along with one receptions for 19 yards. He’s clearly a better running back than Malcolm Brown and should develop into the 1B to Darrell Henderson’s 1A, if nothing else.

Jordan Wilkins

After Marlon Mack went down, Jonathan Taylor became one of the biggest names in fantasy football. However, the rookie running back has not managed to live up to the hype. Taylor hasn’t managed to take command of the backfield, and career journeyman Jordan Wilkins has earned a decent part of this backfield.

Last week, Wilkins recorded 20 carries for 89 yards and one touchdown, a better stat line than Taylor’s 11 carries for 22 yards. This wasn’t a one-week fluke, as head coach Frank Reich has incorporated a committee approach throughout the year. The ceiling is obviously low here, but Wilkins can be a tolerable flex play in deep leagues.

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