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10 best players available on Week 5 waiver wire [UPDATE]

The fantasy football waiver wire offers some opportunities to improve your roster heading into Week 4. We break down some of the key names to consider with your waiver priority.

Los Angeles Rams defensive end Michael Brockers reaches to stop Tampa Bay Buccaneers running back Ronald Jones as he runs the ball in the second half at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum. Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

The NFL wraps up Week 4 on Monday Night Football with the Pittsburgh Steelers hosting the Cincinnati Bengals. It’s not a particularly choice matchup, but there are plenty of gambling and fantasy football implications to watch for this evening.

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In the meantime, all fantasy owners can start looking ahead to how we can improve our rosters heading into Week 5. We generally know who the good and bad teams are in our fantasy leagues, but there is still time for a key waiver addition to make a difference.

With that in mind, here are the top nine players available in at least 50 percent of fantasy leagues, per ESPN ownership rates. We have some players who are continuing to breakout and show some consistency, and others who might be worth a lottery ticket now for when the playoffs roll around.

Editor’s update, 10/1 8:06 a.m.: The Pittsburgh Steelers offer a couple intriguing potential additions after a big MNF win over Cincinnati. Wide receiver Diontae Johnson (6.2 percent) and running back Jaylen Samuels (19.2 percent) each showed signs of adding fantasy value. Johnson had six receptions for 77 yards and a touchdown, while Samuels had 26 rushing yards, a wildcat touchdown, and eight receptions for 57 yards. Johnson has been a big beneficiary in Ben Roethlisberger’s absence, while Samuels might start to be a more frequently used weapon with value in PPR leagues. They have a decent matchup in Week 5 against a struggling Baltimore defense, and could be worth season-long adds — particularly Johnson.

Ronald Jones II, RB, Tampa Bay Buccaneers (41.3 percent)

The Bucs won a wild one primarily through the air and on defense, but Jones was busy, rushing for 70 yards and a touchdown. He was not overly effective at 3.7 yards per carry, but even in a shootout, the Bucs kept him more active than Peyton Barber. Jones is going to continue giving up some work to Barber, but there’s value to be had if he’s still available in your league.

Keke Coutee/Kenny Stills, WR, Houston Texans (29.3/21.5 percent)

This is a one-week addition. The Texans host the Atlanta Falcons next week, and it looks like a choice matchup. The Tennessee Titans beat Atlanta this week with wide receiver A.J. Brown hauling in 94 yards and two touchdowns and Corey Davis bringing in 91 yards and a touchdown. Stills went down with a hamstring injury, so we’ll see what his status is — but if healthy, either is worth a grab for Week 5.

Darrel Williams, RB, Kansas City Chiefs (35.3 percent)

The Chiefs backfield is a mess right now trying to sort who is worth what. Damien Williams remains sidelined after a slow start to the season, and Darrel is splitting work with LeSean McCoy. Shady had 11 carries for 56 yards and four targets in the passing game (33 yards), while Darrel had eight carries for 13 yards and two touchdowns, and also caught three passes for 43 yards. Williams is not a starter at this point, but he’s worth adding if you need help in a bye week, or want to hope for big things before the end of the season.

Jacoby Brissett, QB, Indianapolis Colts (31.2 percent)

This is a one-week play against a shaky Chiefs defense. A road game at Arrowhead is not ideal, but if you’re looking to stream a quarterback this week, Brissett is a useful play. He’s quietly put up very consistent numbers, with similar solid performances in Week 1 and 2, and then taking a small step up in Weeks 3 and 4.

Ryquell Armstead, RB, Jacksonville Jaguars (2.1 percent)

Leonard Fournette put on a dominant performance in Week 4 against the Denver Broncos, rushing for 225 yards and adding 20 receiving yards. He did not find the end zone, but Fournette is healthy and rolling. That being said, injuries are a part of his history. Armstead had eight carries for 42 yards, and added a receiving touchdown. He’s worth an add as a handcuff to Fournette, and if you don’t have Fournette, as a lottery ticket on your bench.

Corey Davis/A.J. Brown, WR, Tennessee Titans (47.4/6.2 percent)

Was this just the Falcons, or might the Titans passing game be showing signs of life? We’ll find out in a hurry in Week 5 as they host a stout Buffalo Bills defense. If you are considering either, Brown might make sense given recency bias. The Titans spent the fifth overall pick on Davis in 2017 and a mid-second round pick on Brown in 2019. Davis is showing some signs of life, but Brown might be the guy more worthy of adding this week off the waiver wire.

Jimmy Graham, TE, Green Bay Packers (35.7 percent)

After wondering when it might happen, we finally got a breakout performance from Graham on Thursday against the Philadelphia Eagles. He hauled in six receptions for 61 yards and a touchdown, and was second only to Davante Adams in targets. The Packers travel to Dallas, host Detroit and Oakland, travel to Kansas City and the Chargers, and then face Carolina before their Week 11 bye. There are some choice matchups in there if you’re looking for some tight end depth.

Matthew Stafford, QB, Detroit Lions (44.3 percent)

The Lions are on a bye this week, but if you’ve got a spare roster spot, he’s worth an add. There will be some inconsistency with Stafford (strong Weeks 1 and 4, a step back in Weeks 2 and 3), but look for solid numbers coming out of the bye. The Green Bay Packers have a solid defense, but there’s a chance for an upset in the mix there. Chase Daniel looked decent against the Vikings, which should bode well for Stafford. Then they get the Giants and Raiders, which offer enticing possibilities.