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Buffalo Bills fantasy football preview, week 9: Zay Jones can help

With the addition of another legitimate receiver in Terrelle Pryor, Buffalo’s second-year slot receiver should only continue improving

As awful as the Buffalo Bills have been on offense this season, there have been signs of life at points during a few games. Whether it’s a positive drive that ultimately ends in a field goal or a string of runs that works, we have to keep pointing at the positives. Otherwise, we’ll just go insane thanks to the constant swell of negativity.

With a team in transition, it’s hard to find individual performances to spotlight, but for one young Buffalo player, his sophomore campaign has been a significant improvement over his first year in the league. With a matchup against a tough Chicago Bears defense on tap for Week 9, positive fantasy football vibes will be hard to come by this week. However, fantasy points come from surprising places every week, and this game could be another example of that.

WR Zay Jones

Starting a Buffalo wide receiver in your fantasy lineup is either a sign of madness of ineptitude, or at least it would appear so on the surface. However, in a week where there are six teams on a bye, you may be looking for help in plenty of strange places this week. Jones is second on the Bills in targets (42), and he leads the team in receptions (25), receiving yards (281), and receiving touchdowns (1). None of those numbers are awe-inspiring, but when considering the magnitude of Buffalo’s ineptitude on offense in combination with the struggles Jones had as a rookie, they are positive nonetheless. Even if Nathan Peterman starts on Sunday, Jones could be in line for a high-volume showing. If Terrelle Pryor, signed on Tuesday, is up to speed enough to be active for the game, then even more chances for Jones will arrive, as Chicago will have another NFL-caliber option to cover in Buffalo’s passing attack. This one’s crazy, but I have a feeling that Jones will be heavily involved in the game plan, and I think he’ll have a fantasy flex-worthy day.

K Stephen Hauschka

Buffalo’s best offensive scorer is its kicker. As long as the Bills are inside the opponent’s 40-yard line, Hasuch-money can give the team something positive. With a game plan that is almost certain to err on the side of extreme conservatism, especially if it’s another Nathan Peterman start, the Bills will be content to run, chew up clock, kick field goals, and try to limit the Bears’ offense to field goals of their own. Hauschka is a great investment if your kicker is on a bye, and a good one still even if your regular kicker isn’t off this week.

Bills D/ST

As much as I like the Bears’ offense, they still have a raw, young quarterback starting on the road in a difficult environment. Buffalo’s defense looked rejuvenated on Monday night against the New England Patriots, and if they can avoid a let-down (whether due to the fact that they were just hyped for a divisional opponent, they know the offense isn’t going to do much of anything, or they are just sick of carrying the team on their collective backs) and play to their potential, then they could create some havoc for young Mitchell Trubisky and company.