Fantasy Football Talk: Week 5


The NFL kind of returned to reality last week as Julio Jones still cannot score in the Red Zone, the Bills were shut out against an average defense, and Ryan Fitzpatrick is now a backup QB. New stars have emerged like Sony Michel and Calvin Ridley who are worth trading for asap, and there are still a few hidden gems on the waiver-wire. Point totals are done in basic ESPN PPR point format.

Must Start:

Blake Bortles- Quarterback- Jacksonville Jaguars- Bortles is not a QB I particularly love, but he is playing the Chiefs. The Chiefs are second to last in the league for most passing yards allowed, and are also tied for second lowest in interceptions with two. I figure the amazing Chief offense will be able to show up against a star studded Jaguar defense. This will result in Bortles throwing a lot without a high fear of him having lots of interceptions. He is yet to have more than one turnover in a game so far this season, so I really like Bortles who should get a lot of attempts.

Matt Breida- Running Back- San Francisco 49ers- This pick even surprised myself, but all the arrows point to a Breida being a great play this week. The Cardinals have allowed the most rushing TDs in the league with 7 and have allowed the second most rushing yards this season. Breida seems like a risky option, because Jimmy Garoppolo is out for the season with a torn ACL. The thing is though, C.J. Beathard showed he can be a decent enough QB to keep the 49ers in games. Will the 49ers go to the playoffs with Beathard, probably not, but he was able to keep the game somewhat close between a solid Chargers squad. The 49ers, even with Beathard at the reigns, should be able to go up early and pile on points on a horrible Cardinals team. This should give Breida a solid amount of carries as well. He may also get a few catches as Beathard will look to play it safe with his passes.

Alex Smith- Quarterback- Washington Redskins- I absolutely love this matchup, and I mean LOVE. Smith is coming off a bye week, and now a rested Redskins offense will get to play a Saints team who has allowed the third most passing yards this season. The Saints are in dead last in yards allowed per pass attempt (9.6), and have allowed the second most passing TDs so far this season. If you were not convinced yet, the Saints have only one interception on the season as well. The Saints should also go up early on the Redskins, and make short work of them. This will lead to lots of passing attempts for Smith with low risk of turnovers.

Do not start:

Dalvin Cook- Running Back- Minnesota Vikings- He has been battling injuries for the past couple weeks, and still has not really proven himself. The Eagles rush defense is arguably the best in the NFL. They have allowed the least amount of rushing yards, and is top three in yards per carry allowed. Minnesota has also been relying heavily on their passing game featuring Stefon Diggs, Adam Thielen, Kyle Rudolph, and Kirk Cousins. Cook would be lucky to go over 6-7 points in my opinion.

Adrian Peterson- Running Back- Washington Redskins- Above I said I loved Alex Smith, and that was for a couple main reasons. One of the biggest reasons is because he will have a large number of passing attempts. A large number of passing attempts does not typically work out well for most RBs. The Saints have allowed 4th least rushing yards, and have allowed the lowest YPC to opposing teams in the NFL (3.2). The Redskins will develop their game plan to focus on their passing game, because the Saints pass defense is, so horrendous. The Redskins will not want to mess with the Saint rush defense if they do not need to, so that will largely affect Peterson.

Seattle Seahawks D/ST- They play what is arguably the best offense in the NFL, the Rams. It is super rare that I pick a defense and special teams, but you can not in your right mind play them. Not a single D/ST has had put up more than zero points when playing the Rams. The Raiders and Cardinals both had zero points, and the Chargers and Vikings (who are better overall defenses) had -9 and -4. You can not play the Seahawks D/ST even if they are a top 7 fantasy D/ST.

Waiver Wire Pickups-

Derek Carr- Quarterback- Oakland Raiders- He is currently top five in the league in passing yards and is averaging 20.5 fantasy points in his last three starts. The best part is he is a part of a Raider team that just is not that good. That will mean lots of pass attempts for Carr later in games, and he actually has good passing options too. Carr is available in 80% of leagues, and is a great pickup as either a backup or starter if someone is on a bye.

T.J. Yeldon- Running Back- Jacksonville Jaguars- He is a top 10 RB owned in only half of ESPN leagues. How can you not add him with all the question marks surrounding Leonard Fournette. Who knows when he will be healthy. It is super rare to find a RB1 on the waiver wire at this point, so a RB averaging 16 points per game is a gem.

Dede Westbrook- Wide Receiver- Jacksonville Jaguars- He is starting to look like Blake Bortles’s favorite target, and has put up double digit points in three of his four games this season. Westbrook is starting to distance himself from the rest of the crowded WR corp in Jacksonville, and is a must add. He is only owned in 12.5% ESPN leagues, so you should be able to get him too.