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Week 9 fantasy pickups include Marvin Jones, Darrius Heyward-Bey, Andre Brown

Marvin-Jones-BengalsFor many of you, the trade deadline in your fantasy leagues is likely just around the corner. It may have already even passed. One thing that means is that working the waiver wire will be more important than ever down the stretch. If your trade deadline has passed, picking guys up and strategically using your waiver priority will be the only way to acquire players. Here are some solid players you should be targeting on the Week 9 waiver wire.

Marvin Jones, WR, Bengals: Jones has come out of nowhere this month, hauling in 15 catches for 250 yards and a whopping six touchdowns over Cincinnati’s past three games. Most of us expected Mohamed Sanu to be the second option in the passing game for Andy Dalton behind AJ Green, but Jones has been that guy. He was probably added in a lot of leagues last week and will still be the most popular add this week. There are some red flags, however. Is his ridiculous touchdown pace going to continue? Not a chance. Andrew Hawkins is set to return from short-term IR soon and should steal some targets from Jones. He can still be productive, but don’t get sucked into the Eddie Royal trap if you already have decent receiver depth. His fantasy scoring rate simply can’t continue.

Darrius Heyward-Bey, WR, Colts: Reggie Wayne is out for the season with a torn ACL. The Colts are not going to stop passing with Andrew Luck, so Heyward-Bey and TY Hilton should both see a significant increase in targets. Heyward-Bey has shown some big-play ability and has played on roughly 75% of Indy’s offensive snaps this season. The Colts were on a bye last week, which should have helped DHB and Hilton prepare for expanded roles. The fact that the Colts did not swing a trade for a wide receiver or add a veteran means they trust the guys they have now. Heyward-Bey should be a viable WR3 based on volume alone.

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Heyward-Bey a Legend in the Making?

I’ll gladly admit that it’s a little unfair to call an NFL player a bust after only one season.  Although he had an awful year after being chosen with the 7th overall selection in the 2009 NFL draft, it remains to be seen if Oakland Raiders receiver Darrius Heyward-Bey will emerge as a top pass-catching threat. 

We’ve already told you how we feel about Heyward-Bey’s potential (or lack thereof) at the professional level.  So far, we’re right.  Al Davis, on the other hand, seems to think we’ll be wrong in the long run and he even went so far as to have a press release drawn up informing the public of how well Heyward-Bey has been performing at practice this off-season.

After rattling off a list of receivers that have played for the Raiders that includes Randy Moss, Jerry Rice, and Tim Brown among others, here’s what the Raiders press release said about their young receiver:

Now Darrius Heyward-Bey, the Raiders’ top pick in the 2009 NFL Draft, is prepping to join that select group. Heyward-Bey has enjoyed a workmanlike offseason where he has put in time and energy to prepare for his second NFL campaign, when many of those whose names mentioned blossomed in professional football competition.

The list of wide receivers should make any pundit or so-called expert think twice before putting negativity on Heyward-Bey. No one has come close to the excellence at wide receivers that have worn the Silver and Black. These performers have been the greatest players who have ever played the game.

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Darrius Heyward-Bey’s Career Off to a Dropping Start

Raiders Camp FootballI wasn’t a fan of the Raiders selecting Darrius Heyward-Bey when the draft passed in April. If a guy’s primary weapon is speed but he has serious issues dropping the ball and producing even at the college level, then that to me warrants nothing higher than a third-round pick. The Raiders decided that was worth the 7th overall pick. Well it’s too late for the Raiders to go back on their mistakes so now they must live with them. And it’s already begun in training camp:

The struggling receiver? Rookie Darrius Heyward-Bey, who dropped three passes in a single offense-only drill. The first came on a short pass right at him with DHB dropping the ball as he went to turn upfield. The other was on a deeper pass when he went up awkward and had it clank off both hands from in front of him.

If that practice report is sounds familiar, it’s because the same story happened in May back at the team’s minicamp. We haven’t even started the preseason yet and Heyward-Bey is already solidifying his stranglehold on the “bust” label. Of course, if everyone except the Raiders knew he wasn’t worth the seventh overall pick, then can he really be considered a bust?

Raiders Show Why They’re the Raiders, Select Biggest WR Bust Heyward-Bey

If there’s one player in this draft that I’m confident will wind up being a bust, it’s Darrius Heyward-Bey. Because Maryland’s quarterback was a local kid from LA, Chris Turner, I saw a good amount of their games and paid attention to what they did. Let me tell you this: I never once remember hearing or seeing Darrius Heyward-Bey, and that’s part of my biggest concern with him. How is it possible for a guy who’s supposedly a top-10 pick in the NFL draft to be so easily taken out of games in college? For an 8-4 team, does 42 catches, 609 yards and 5 touchdowns impress you? That doesn’t seem too impressive for a 12-game season. Heyward-Bey only had one game where he caught more than five passes and that also was his only 100-yard game of the season. Does that scream out game-changer to you? Me neither.

Al Davis and the Raiders are running the team the same way they did 30 years ago when Davis was a genius — playing the speed game. Heyward-Bey ran one of the fastest, if not the fastest 40 times at the combine. Darrius ran a sub-4.30 40 which was a time good enough to get Chris Johnson drafted from East Carolina in the first-round by Tennessee last year. Speed certainly is a weapon, but I’d be more concerned with taking a player who’s more of a play-maker with great route-running abilities and hands. Speed alone wouldn’t make me take a guy with the 7th pick in the draft. I feel sorry for you, Raider fans. You needed a big-time receiver and instead you got a speed demon who can be taken out of the game without much trouble. Way to rebuild the franchise, Oakland. Thanks for playing.