9 route: Top 9 fantasy football waiver targets in Week 6

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Tennessee Titans quarterback Marcus Mariota (8) looks to pass during the first half of an NFL football game against the Miami Dolphins, Sunday, Oct. 9, 2016, in Miami Gardens, Fla. (AP Photo/Joel Auerbach) — Joel Auerbach

Every Tuesday, Arthur Arkush shares his top nine waiver wire targets for fantasy football players. This will focus exclusively on players owned in less than 50 percent of all Yahoo! leagues.

A note of caution: just because a player is on this list, it doesn't mean readers should exhaust their claim priority and/or waiver budget. Those decisions should be based on individual roster makeup, injuries and other outside forces.

Have specific roster questions for your fantasy team? Tweet @ArthurArkush

Just missed the cut: Raiders RB Jalen Richard, Seahawks RB C.J. Spiller, Ravens RB Kenneth Dixon, Jaguars RB Chris Ivory, Bills TE Charles Clay, Broncos QB Paxton Lynch, Bills WR Robert Woods, Steelers TE Ladarius Green

9. 49ers WR Jeremy Kerley: Averaging seven catches, 95 yards and a score over his past two games, Kerley gets what most would consider an upgrade at quarterback this week when Colin Kaepernick makes his first 2016 start. Only 11 pass catchers have more targets than Kerley's 46. For all the flack we give the 49ers front office, Kerley was a nice late-August trade acquisition to give San Francisco exactly one receiver with value.

8. 49ers QB Colin Kaepernick: We can't wait to see what type of response Kap gets when he kneels as part of the Niners' victory formation for the first time. Seriously, though, Blaine Gabbert leads NFL quarterbacks in rushing yards with 172. If he could hit the ocean from the beach with any of his deep balls, Gabbert would likely be in lower-tier QB1 area. We're not saying Kaepernick will be that much better, but even a slight passing uptick, paired with his rushing ability in Chip Kelly's offense, makes him relevant again — as a football player. It's about time.

7. Broncos RB Devontae Booker: C.J. Anderson has been trending downward since Week Two. Conversely, the rook, Book, has seen his touches and chances consistently increase. He matched a career-high with 10 touches for a new high in scrimmage yards (59) in Week Five. The numbers aren't exciting — yet — but it's clear Denver is desperate to get its ground attack on track. Booker isn't startable but he's quickly become a must-own, and not just for Anderson owners, in a division with defensive deficiencies outside of Denver.

6. Panthers RB Cameron Artis-Payne: He wasn't the busiest back on the field — that billing is reserved for Jacquizz Rodgers and his ridiculous 35 touches — but Artis-Payne parlayed a career-high 18 carries into 85 yards and a pair of scores in a game you hopefully decided not to turn on Monday night. Jonathan Stewart is close to returning so he can get injured again, and with Cam Newton also on the mend, who's to say Artis-Payne won't have a few more of these outings in the future? If he gets another start, the sledding actually gets easier in New Orleans this week.

5. Chargers TE Hunter Henry: He's still only 28 percent owned despite racking up at least 72 yards or a touchdown in three straight. Even with Antonio Gates back, the rookie dominated the touches, again flashing plenty of juice on an explosive catch-and-run. San Diego is in future mode, albeit the murkiest of murky futures, and Henry's involvement isn't decreasing any time soon.

4. Patriots RB James White: Tom Brady's return coincided with James White out-touching LeGarrette Blount for the first time, likely more a confluence than coincidence as New England regains its pass-first identity. White flashed his run-after-catch ability on a 36-yarder, and with a healthy Rob Gronkowski, Martellus Bennett and Julian Edelman commanding attention over the middle, White's best games should lie ahead.

3. Titans QB Marcus Mariota: A four-touchdown day for the sophomore in South Beach would make it easy to overreact. But it's more Mariota's next four games — Cleveland, Indianapolis and Jacksonville, all at home, then a trip to San Diego — that portends he's turning a corner. Mariota is getting strong protection, and with Delanie Walker's hamstring also strengthening, even without the luxury of any other reliable targets, he won't be at 48 percent ownership come tomorrow.

2. Patriots WR Chris Hogan: Did you heed our advice last week? No? That's understandable, because unlike Hogan — who's always open — our recommendations aren't always right. But many were last week, none more so than Hogan (actually, Sammie Coates, but we'll get there soon enough). Against his old team, Hogan (4-114) rung up his first career 100-yard day, providing the vertical dimension future opponents will continue to struggle accounting for because of all the Pats' short and intermediate weapons.

1. Steelers WR Sammie Coates: So we were right about Coates — partially. We told you to go get him, five days before he went off for his best day as a pro with 6-139-2 (you're welcome). But we also said he wasn't Martavis Bryant (hey, it's science!), before a pair of drops prevented him from a three-touchdown day that would make even the prolific scoring Bryant proud. He's also up to 421 yards at an electrifying 22.2 a pop. Not even big-play Bryant has gotten that high (on the football field).