MIAMI, Nov. 1 (UPI) -- Jaylen Waddle and K.J. Osborn are among my five must-start wide receivers for Week 9 of the fantasy football season.
If you need more options for your roster, check out my top add/drops article. My Week 9 rankings for quarterbacks, running backs and tight ends are also available and will be updated throughout the week.
Stefon Diggs, Tyreek Hill, Ja'Marr Chase, A.J. Brown and Cooper Kupp lead my Top 50 Week 8 wide receiver rankings, which are listed below. Keenan Allen, CeeDee Lamb, Waddle, Mike Evans and Chris Olave round out my Top 10.
All of my must-start options rank inside the Top 28 in my rankings, meaning they should all be started in leagues that include at least 14 teams.
Players from the Denver Broncos, Detroit Lions, Jacksonville Jaguars and San Francisco 49ers should either be benched or dropped, as those teams have Week 9 byes. Wide receivers from Thursday's Tennessee Titans-Pittsburgh Steelers game were removed from my rankings.
Tyreek Hill's ridiculous 2023 season has overshadowed his teammate's recent success over the last month. Waddle scored touchdowns in three of his last four games for the Miami Dolphins. He logged season-highs in targets (12) and yards (121) in Week 8, when he hauled in seven catches, including a touchdown, in a win over the New England Patriots.
Waddle, who is among the league leaders in targets over the last four weeks, should receive an abundance of looks again Sunday, when the Dolphins face the Kansas City Chiefs in Frankfurt, Germany.
The Chiefs allowed touchdowns to Denver Broncos wide receivers Jerry Jeudy and Courtland Sutton in Week 8. Look for the Dolphins and Chiefs offenses to battle in a high-scoring shootout in this international matchup.
Waddle is a near-lock for at least 10 targets. I expect Waddle and Hill to both finish inside the Top 10 among wide receivers for fantasy points this week. Waddle is my No. 8 play.
The Colts surrendered the 11th-most yards per game (173.4) to the position through eight weeks. Thielen is off to one of the best seasons of his career, with 70 targets for 57 catches, 584 yards and four scores through seven games.
The veteran wide receiver logged at least 11 targets in four of his last five games. He also secured at least 11 catches for more than 100 yards in three of his last five appearances.
Thielen also scored touchdowns in four of his last six games.
I expect another great showing from Thielen against the Colts, who just surrendered a total of 12 catches, 267 yards and a score to New Orleans Saints wide receivers Michael Thomas, Chris Olave and Rashid Shaheed.
The Panthers' passing offense hasn't been nearly as productive as the Saints' throwing attack, but Thielen's usage makes him an every-week starter, with spectacular value in points-per-reception formats.
Wilson and the New York Jets will face the Los Angeles Chargers on Monday in East Rutherford, N.J. The Chargers allowed the third-most fantasy points per game and nearly 200 yards per contest, the most in the NFL, to wide receivers through eight weeks.
Wilson totaled at least 12 targets in three of his last four games. He also secured seven catches for a season-high 100 yards in Week 8. I expect the Jets to fall behind in this matchup, with quarterback Zach Wilson using Wilson and the Jets' other weapons in an increased-volume passing attack.
Wilson is my No. 16 play and can be plugged in as a WR2.
Cooks scored in each of his last two games. He also received at least four targets in all of his appearances this season. This week, Cooks and the Dallas Cowboys will battle the Philadelphia Eagles.
The Eagles tied with the Washington Commanders for allowing the most fantasy points per game to wide receivers through eight weeks. They also surrendered the most catches (136), second-most touchdowns and fourth-most yards to the position.
I expect Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott to eclipse 270 passing yards for the third-consecutive game this week against the Eagles. He should target Cooks a handful of times and throw multiple touchdown passes. Cooks, my No. 23 play, can be plugged in as a WR2/WR3 in leagues with at least 14 teams.
Osborn, my No. 26 option, is a bit of a dart-throw play in Week 9, but I like his chances to capitalize on high volume during the Minnesota Vikings' matchup with the Atlanta Falcons.
The Vikings will be playing with a backup quarterback this week because of Kirk Cousins' season-ending Achilles injury. That could lead to a deficit against the Falcons, who typically try to control games with their rushing attack.
Osborn totaled season-highs with 10 targets, eight catches and 99 yards in Week 8. He caught at least five passes in three of his last four games. Osborn likely needs to score a touchdown to validate a streaming start in Week 9, but he should get plenty of opportunties for that against a defense that allowed the third-most touchdowns to the position so far this season.
He is a great bye-week fill-in play if your typical starter is unavailable.
Week 9 fantasy football wide receiver rankings
1. Stefon Diggs, Buffalo Bills at CIN
2. Tyreek Hill, Miami Dolphins at KC
3. Ja'Marr Chase, Cincinnati Bengals vs. BUF
4. A.J. Brown, Philadelphia Eagles vs. DAL
5. Cooper Kupp, Los Angeles Rams at GB
6. Keenan Allen, Los Angeles Chargers at NYJ
7. CeeDee Lamb, Dallas Cowboys at PHI
8. Jaylen Waddle, Miami Dolphins at KC
9. Mike Evans, Tampa Bay Buccaneers at HOU
10. Chris Olave, New Orleans Saints vs. CHI
12. Terry McLaurin, Washington Commanders at NE
13. Adam Thielen, Carolina Panthers vs. IND
14. Puka Nacua, Los Angeles Rams at GB
16. Garrett Wilson, New York Jets vs. LAC
17. DeVonta Smith, Philadelphia Eagles vs. DAL
18. Chris Godwin, Tampa Bay Buccaneers at HOU
21. Tee Higgins, Cincinnati Bengals vs. BUF
22. Michael Pittman Jr., Indianapolis Colts at CAR
23. Brandin Cooks, Dallas Cowboys at PHI
24. Jordan Addison, Minnesota Vikings at ATL
25. Rashid Shaheed, New Orleans Saints vs. CHI
26. K.J. Osborn, Minnesota Vikings at ATL
27. Gabe Davis, Buffalo Bills at CIN
29. D.J. Moore, Chicago Bears at NO
30. Christian Watson, Green Bay Packers vs. LAR
31. Tank Dell, Houston Texans vs. TB
32. Rashee Rice, Kansas City Chiefs vs. MIA
33. Tyler Lockett, Seattle Seahawks at BAL
34. Demario Douglass, New England Patriots vs. WAS
35. Josh Palmer, Los Angeles Chargers at NYJ
36. Khalil Shakir, Buffalo Bills at CIN
37. Michael Thomas, New Orleans Saints vs. CHI
38. Tyler Boyd, Cincinnati Bengals vs. BUF
39. Josh Downs, Indianapolis Colts at CAR
40. Drake London, Atlanta Falcons vs. MIN
41. Jaxson Smith-Njigba, Seattle Seahawks at BAL
42. Jahan Dotson, Washington Commanders at NE
43. Romeo Doubs, Green Bay Packers vs. LAR
44. Noah Brown, Houston Texans vs. TB
45. Jayden Reed, Green Bay Packers vs. LAR
46. Marquise Brown, Arizona Cardinals at CLE
47. Jakobi Meyers, Las Vegas Raiders vs. NYG
48. Michael Gallup, Dallas Cowboys at PHI
49. Jonathan Mingo, Carolina Panthers vs. IND
50. Wan'Dale Robinson, New York Giants at LV