Week 5 Start ‘Em/Sit ‘Em: QB/WR

Week 5 is underway (Go Pats) and the Sunday games pack some serious punch. Before we dive into whom to put into our lineups, let’s recap how last week went. I am pleased to announce that I will never trust Case Keenum again and I apologize if you listened to me and started him. He was trash against an equally trash KC defense. All of the yuck, Case, all of it. I will also put the nail in the coffin on Eli Manning. He looks lost, worn out and old like his brother before him. He has the weapons. He has a run game. He has an o-line that’s at least a little better than last year, but he just doesn’t have the arm strength any longer. While the starts were meh, the sit suggestions started off hot. I figured last week was the week the Fitz-magic would run out and indeed it did. Winston is now the starter in Tampa Bay after an awful performance from Fitzpatrick against the Bears. I suggested sitting Carson Wentz because I felt he would need a little bit more time to get back into a groove but he looked great against a good Titans defense on the road. If he can repeat that performance against the Vikings this week then feel comfortable starting Wentz going forward.

As for wide receivers, Tyler Boyd had another big game while Christian Kirk had a rookie letdown game. 1 for 2, .500 gets you into the hall of fame folks. I said to sit Quincy Enunwa and while he performed better than expected (4 catches for 66 yards) he still wasn’t start worthy. I said to sit Kelvin Benjamin and I ended up scoring as many points as the Bills while I was sitting on my friends couch watching so that tells you all you need to know about that. With that said, on with the action!

Start ‘Em QB

Titans QB Marcus Mariota @ Buffalo

Mariota played well against a pretty good Eagles defense last week and this week he’ll take on the Bills. Mariota is always a risky start because he’s a bit injury prone but if he can make it through this game then he has a great match-up. Corey Davis continues to emerge and I think Mariota is heating up in Matt Lafleur’s new offense. Start Mariota this week.

Raiders QB Derek Carr @ LAC

While Oakland has mostly been in turmoil this season, their offense has been sneaky good through the first 4 weeks. Derek Carr is currently 5th in the league in passing yards and, while his touchdowns are low (6), he’s looked pretty solid. This week he’ll face a Chargers defense that has been somewhat of a disappointment thus far this season. You need to score points to keep up with LA so Carr will have a good game flow and plenty of chances to make some plays with his arm. Trust Carr this week.

Sit ‘Em QB

Seahawks QB Russell Wilson VS LAR

He’s playing the Rams. He has a gimpy Doug Baldwin and Tyler Lockett. I could continue but I don’t think I should. Stay away from Russ this week.

Washington QB Alex Smith @ NO

Monday Night Football in New Orleans at the Dome and the crowd will be hyped up for Brees becoming the all time leader in passing yards equals a rough time for the opposing team. Washington currently lacks a bit of an identity but I just don’t like this spot for Alex Smith. Couple that with the fact that the Saints defense might be turning a corner and I would advise against getting ballsy and starting Smith this week.

Start ‘Em WR

Falcons WR Mahamed Sanu @ Pittsburgh

Sanu has become the forgotten man in Atlanta thanks to the emergence of rookie wide receiver Calvin Ridley. Sanu seems to be coming around as he had 100 yards receiving last week and a touchdown the week before that. I think Falcons-Steelers is going to be a very high scoring affair. Sanu is a sneaky good flex play this week and should have plenty of opportunities to make plays.

Ravens WR John Brown @ Cleveland

John ‘Smokey’ Brown has been white-hot this season. After being hyped up in the preseason, he has lived up to his lofty expectations thus far and should continue to do some damage for the Ravens. This week the Ravens travel to Cleveland to face a much-improved Browns defense. Even with the improvements, I still like Brown this week and would expect him to get the volume of a WR1. Fire him up.

Sit ‘Em WR

Seahawks WR Tyler Lockett VS LAR

If you haven’t noticed, I really don’t like the Seahawks’ chances this week against the Rams. I know Kirk Cousins just roasted the Rams but I expect a bounce back effort against a much weaker offense in Seattle. Lockett has actually been solid this season but the Rams defensive line might not give Russell Wilson enough time to even get the ball to him. Stay away from Lockett and all Seahawks pass catcher’s this week.

Browns WR Jarvis landry VS Baltimore

I know it’s tough to sit juice but that’s what you’ll have to do this week. He’s a little hobbled AND he is facing a very good Ravens secondary that will get Jimmy Smith back this week. This is not the week for Jarvis and the Browns offense. I’d steer clear of them and look elsewhere.

Week 5 RB/TE Start ’em/Sit ’em

Week 4 is in the rear view mirror. All I can say is, “Wow! That was interesting!” Four of the top 10 running backs were blips on the fantasy radar with the 11th RB overall also being a surprise. I’m glad I’m not the only writer who missed the bus on some of those!

Week 3 Recap

RB Starts – I’m going to award myself 1 out of 2 simply because I wrote the article before Chris Carson was called out for the game. Mike Davis was in his place and succeeded! Meanwhile, Kenyan Drake…..why do you own him? Why did I fall for the matchup? Dunce Cap.

RB Sits – 1 out of 2 – Carlos Hyde had a really nice day but I hit the nail on the head with Peyton Barber. Have you picked up Ronald Jones, yet? Do it now! I’ll wait.

TE Starts – 1 out of 2 – Trey Burton was amazing! Austin Hooper, not so much. Spoiler alert, I’m going back to the well!

TE Sits – 2 out of 2 – Neither ASJ nor Rhett Ellison provided any fantasy value in week 4.

Running Back: Start ’em

Chris Thompson (Washington)

Washington is coming off of their bye week. Meanwhile, the Saints offense is still moving along at breakneck speed! The Redskins, at best, will be playing catchup. The Saints are red in your matchup because they played Tampa Bay in week 1, skewing the results. Carlos Hyde, Tevin Coleman, and Saquon Barkley have all had great games against the Saints. It’s Chris Thompson’s turn.

Javorius Allen (Baltimore Ravens)

Buck Allen was already vulturing touchdowns. Then, in week 4, Alex Collins fumbled at the goal line. Adding to that, Alex Collins was on the injury report all week, only recently being removed. Some delicious whipped cream on top of this strawberry shortcake (or insert your favorite dessert here), the Cleveland defense is terrible against the run. Even Isaiah Crowell had a great game. Light him up. Start him without hesitation.

Running Back: Sit ’em

Jay Ajayi (Philadelphia Eagles)

I’m just too nervous to even think about starting Jay Ajayi. Maybe I live in another dimension where fractured vertebrae hurt and prevent movement. I get it, he’s in his contract year and is trying to earn for his future. But, this is a recipe for disaster. You’re playing with fire every week that you start him. Maybe he’ll get you 10+ points like last week. Or maybe the injury catches up to him. I hate playing the lottery.

Lamar Miller (Houston Texans)

Here’s another one. He is still on the injury report and he hasn’t exactly been good this season, anyway. I believe Alfred Blue will get the majority of snaps, allowing Lamar Miller to get some additional rest. Either way, I hope you take a moment on Tuesday to put D’Onta Foreman on your waiver add. You’re on a two week notice before he takes over.

Tight End: Start ’em

Jordan Reed (Washington Redskins)

Yes, yes, I know. This seems easy. The reason I included him here is because I’m recalling back to our draft weeks when we were still able to draft Jordan Reed in the 12th round due to the lingering health concerns. Those concerns are no longer *currently* valid. With the bruised up receivers in Washington, who weren’t doing that well when they were healthy, Reed is the best option to have a great week. I wouldn’t be surprised if he ended the week as TE1.

Austin Hooper (Atlanta Falcons)

I hope this isn’t a “fool me once…” situation, since I put Hooper on my Start ’em list last week and was wrong. But, I cannot pass up this matchup. There are going to be points! Vegas has this game with a 57.5 over/under. That is incredible. Of course there’s risk! These are tight ends that we’re talking about here. The position is a cesspool of muck and dread, fantasy-wise.

Honorable mention to CJ Uzomah.

After Tyler Eifert’s injury, the Bengals have named Uzomah as their lead Tight End. I hope you have other options, because RISK! But, if the bye weeks or injury have caused heartache and waiver emptiness, Uzomah isn’t a bad dart throw.

Tight End: Sit ’em

Nick Vannett (Seattle Seahawks)

Will Dissly was injured last week which might make you think that Nick Vannett is next in line. For now, you’re correct. However, they’re playing the LA Rams. The *undefeated* LA Rams. I’ll avoid Vannett this week UNLESS there is some weird injury update and Doug Baldwin sits again.

Hayden Hurst (Baltimore Ravens)

I feel like Mr. Miyagi here, saying, “Wait. Not yet.” The Ravens have been playing ring-around-the-tight-end successfully. None of them have individual fantasy value. As a team position, they have done quite well. This is Hurst’s first week active since his injury. I admit that he could have a stellar game in this matchup, but I’m too worried about rust and the 3 other tight ends who are in the mix. Avoid.

Best of luck to each of you in week 5. Unless you’re facing me. In that case, I hope you get sucked into The Walking Dead marathon and forget to set your lineup! (Spoiler alert, Season 8 was terrible. I have very low hopes for Season 9.)

32 Best Week 5 DFS Targets, Values, & Bargain Bin Picks for Draft Kings/Fan Duel

We’re at the part of the season where not only do we lose the six teams from the primetime games each week but also the teams on the bye.  Thus, our player pool to select from on the main slate is reduced and that is a constant until week 12 concludes and the bye weeks are finished.

Heading into week 5, I love a lot of the pricier options.  Of course, the challenge will be selecting the right ones and squeezing in as many as possible.  Usually I have a variety of players ranging in salary but as you’ll see, the expensive players make up a lot of the article this week.  However, I will still have a few cheaper options that you can consider for your lineup construction.

Quarterback

Ben Roethlisberger: vs ATL (DK 6900; FD 8400)

The Falcons have given up at minimum 300 yards and three passing touchdowns to each of the last three quarterbacks they’ve faced; that’s an excellent 24 point floor before the opening kickoff takes place.  It doesn’t set up better for Ben Roethlisberger who has traditionally performed better at Heinz Field than away from it.  Don’t let the performance against the Ravens, a division rival that typically plays them tough, deter you from making the easy call in starting Big Ben this week against a struggling Atlanta defensive unit.  The odds of seeing the quarterback who shredded Kansas City in week 2 are incredibly higher than the one that showed up against Baltimore last Sunday night.

Kirk Cousins: at PHI (DK 6000; FD 7700)

He’s underpriced in the theory that the Eagles defense is far superior at home than away from Lincoln Financial Field.  Part of that theory is correct as they have stopped the run much more effectively in South Philly and can generate pressure against a bad Vikings offensive line.  However, that secondary is burnable in any NFL venue and one that Kirk Cousins has enjoyed a good deal of success in his time with the Redskins.  He is averaging 2.28 passing touchdowns against the Eagles in his last seven games.  What’s more notable is his 12 touchdown passes at the Linc in his last four games there and arguably, he now has the best weapons he’s ever had in his career since signing with the Vikings.  Kirk’s 2018 home/road splits through four games are ridiculous through four games and his success on the road should continue against Philadelphia’s secondary that is struggling immensely.

Blake Bortles: at KC (DK 5500; FD 7000)

While Case Keenum didn’t put up the fantasy performance that would have been expected, the Chiefs defense still allowed 404 yards of total offense.  They had allowed the prior three quarterbacks an average of 30.1 FPPG and that’s a narrative we’ll continue to attack as Blake Bortles can absolutely return value in this spot.  Very much an underrated asset in Blake’s career is his ability to scramble as he is averaging 33 rushing yards a game.  The Chiefs secondary won’t go many games without allowing a passing touchdown and especially on DraftKings with 16.5 being the number to return value, it’s a great spot to roster Bortles with Leonard Fournette inactive in this game. 

Running Back

Melvin Gordon: vs OAK (DK 8600; FD 8700)

The Raiders may have won their first game but they certainly didn’t look impressive doing so, giving up 42 points in Baker Mayfield’s first start in the NFL.  In that high-scoring affair, the Browns running backs had a field day to the tune of 27 rushes for 198 yards and 3 touchdowns along with four receptions for 45 yards; that’s 44.3 FD/49.3 DK points for those keeping score.  Enter Melvin Gordon who is averaging 19.5 touches per game and in a game where the Chargers are favored by 5.5 points, he should find plenty of work and opportunity against this Oakland team that should be grateful to be 1-3 and not 0-4.  Start Gordon with confidence.  

Christian McCaffery: vs NYG (DK 8000; FD 8100)

The formula for fantasy football is simple: snaps allow for the opportunity to touch the ball which generates fantasy production.  It’s hard to argue not paying up for McCaffery when he is on the field for 93% of Carolina’s offensive snaps, including all 67 of them against the Bengals in week 3.   His 22.6 touches per game ranks second only behind Todd Gurley and this week, he faces a Giants team that’s allowed the 6th most FPA to the running back position in PPR scoring and the 2nd most touchdowns to the position.  Cam Newton has certainly vultured some of his potential touchdowns early on but as previous Giant opponents like Ezekiel Elliott and Alvin Kamara have done, there is a good chance that McCaffery crosses the pylons for the first time this weekend.

James Conner: vs ATL (DK 7500; FD 7800)

When the Steelers have trailed in games, James Conner’s usage plummets as illustrated by his 12.5 touches against the Chiefs and Ravens, all games the Steelers would eventually lose.  When the Steelers have held a lead and didn’t go on to lose, he averages 28 touches.  While he thrives on a positive gamescript, he could find success even if the Steelers fall behind and they gameplan around Atlanta’s inability to stop pass catching backs.  Opposing running backs are averaging 10.5 catches on 13.75 targets against the Falcons, all figures that bode well for Conner who himself averages six targets a game.  It sets up well for him as he sees 93.1% of the running back touches against a Falcons defense that allows 29.75 touches per game to opposing running backs.

Aaron Jones: at DET (DK 4300; FD 6100)

Jamaal Williams and Ty Montgomery weren’t impressive with their 2.45 and 3.6 yards per carry clips against a Bills team that has been terrible against running backs.  Aaron Jones wasn’t any better; remove the 30 yard rush and he averaged 3.5 yards per carry.  However, Aaron Rodgers has been raving about Jones and hopefully this week, his snaps and touches will increase and reflect that excitement.  Up next for Jones is a Lions team that Ezekiel Elliott slaughtered for 240 scrimmage yards.  He is more a bargain on DraftKings and with increased opportunity, he could take advantage of this Lions team that gives up 6.12 yards per carry.

Mark Walton: vs MIA (DK 3400; FD 4700)

It will come down to 11:30 EST/8:30 PST when the inactives release for the first set of games on Sunday but Mark Walton should ONLY be roster if Joe Mixon AND Giovani Bernard are both unavailable on Sunday.  At the time of this writing on Thursday night, Bernard has yet to practice this week and while Mixon has been in full pads, he has yet to be medically cleared after arthroscopic knee surgery.  Walton could be the free space on both sites and be the conduit to the higher-priced options this week.  Walton would face a Dolphins team that allows the 4th most FPA to running backs and was just crushed by James White and Sony Michel in Foxboro the week before.

Wide Receiver

Julio Jones: at PIT: (DK 8500; FD 8800)

It almost lacks explanation how Julio Jones has only scored three touchdowns since the start of the 2017 season.  Currently, he is putting up yardage in mass chunks and is on pace for a 2,000 receiving yard season.  Perhaps the touchdown drought ends this weekend as Calvin Ridley draws the harder matchup this weekend.  He will line up opposite Joe Haden on most of his snaps while Julio will see Coty Sensbaugh who is part of a Steelers secondary that is allowing the 5th most FPA to receivers lined up on the left side of the ball.  Pittsburgh also allows the 3rd most FPA to slot receivers and both Ridley and Julio will see time there against Mike Hilton.  Calvin Ridley is on pace for 24 receiving touchdowns; regression is going to hit the rookie at some point soon.  Eventually, Julio is going to find the end zone as the Falcons keep finding themselves in shootouts each week.  A date against a terrible Steelers secondary bodes well to finally cross the pylons.

Brandin Cooks: at SEA (DK 7400; FD 7800)

The Rams offense is able to sustain three receivers averaging over 16 FD/20 DK points per game while averaging 35 points through the first four games.  Sean McVay has made it a point to target Brandin Cooks as he has seen at least eight targets in each game thus far; he saw eight or more targets just five times with the Patriots last year.  He draws a favorable matchup in the rookie Tre Flowers who was beaten by Emmanuel Sanders for 51 and 43 yard strikes, the latter being a touchdown, in week 1.  Jared Goff has been masterful in the first quarter of the season and with the blazing speed of Cooks, expect Goff to take a few deeps shots against this vulnerable cornerback.

Adam Thielen: at PHI (DK 7700; FD 8300)

Stefon Diggs: at PHI (DK 7000; FD 8200)

The list of slot receivers that Sidney Jones has faced are as follows: Mohamed Sanu, Adam Humphries, Chester Rogers, and Tajae Sharpe.  This will be the toughest test for the second-year cornerback as Adam Thielen is averaging 14 targets a game and has eclipsed 100 yards in all four games so far.  Diggs is cheaper on both sites, more so on DraftKings, and has surpassed 20+ fantasy points in both road games early on, something he didn’t achieve once last year in PPR scoring.  Diggs draws Jalen Mills who was last seen being torched by Corey Davis and Taywan Taylor.  This is a matchup that Minnesota offensive coordinator and former Philadelphia quarterbacks coach John DeFillipo should continue to expose as he was witness to quite a few of Jalen’s poor performances.  Its tough to go wrong on either of these options and both can make for a good stack with Kirk Cousins.

Emmanuel Sanders: at NYJ (DK 7100; FD 6700)

This is one of my favorite plays on FanDuel in week 5 as he is very affordable for the breakout potential he possesses.  His production has dropped off since week 2 but draws a great matchup against Buster Skrine.  Blake Bortles attacked the slot corner last week targeting Dede Westbrook 13 times for nine receptions and 130 yards.  Sanders lines up in the slot on nearly 66% of his snaps and will see plenty of Skrine on Sunday.  He makes for a good play on DraftKings but there are other options I like in his price range; give Sanders the call on FanDuel at his $6700 salary.  

Taywan Taylor: at BUF (DK 4000; FD 5000)

For Taywan Taylor, it’s about the matchup and opportunity.  Corey Davis will be busy dealing with Tre’Davious White which should filter additional targets Taylor’s way.  Also, the Titans have all but abandoned targeting the tight end position with the injury to Delanie Walker and with Rishard Matthews no longer a member of the team, Taylor is now the #2 passing option for Marcus Mariota.  The price is too good to pass up given all of the facts listed above; he’s a good piece for getting all of your other options in lineups on Sunday.

Tight End

Jimmy Graham: at DET (DK 4700; FD 6100)

The Green Bay medical situation with their receivers is becoming concerning.  Randall Cobb and Geronimo Allison have yet to practice as of Thursday night and Davante Adams will deal with Darius Slay this week.  Jimmy Graham could find himself the beneficiary of these injuries and see additional work against a Lions team that is in the middle of the pack against the tight end position.  Aaron Rodgers has fared well against the Lions, throwing 2+ touchdown passes in his last 5 against them.  Detroit has given up two touchdowns to tight ends through four games and in a game where Rodgers could be lacking passing options, Graham is a good option at a reasonable price.

Vance McDonald: vs ATL (DK 3700; FD 4600)

This is about getting exposure to the game with the highest total on the week 5 slate.  Since Vance McDonald’s 2018 debut in week 2 against the Chiefs when fellow tight end Jesse James went off for 22.3 FD/27.8 DK points, McDonald has seen eight more targets than James over the last two weeks.  He’s been either boom or bust in his brief time in Pittsburgh; the divisional round game against Jacksonville last year and the Monday night game against Tampa Bay this year are examples of that boom potential.  Against an Atlanta defense that has given up 12.35 FD/15.1 DK point averages to the tight end position over the last two weeks on top of the nine passing touchdowns allowed over the last three weeks, he has a decent shot at returning value and provides a means to the higher-priced options, especially at his $4600 salary on FanDuel.

Austin Hooper: at PIT (DK 3000; FD 5000)

Again, exposure to the highest total on the week 5 slate and while McDonald was more the FanDuel bargain, Austin Hooper is a better bargain on DraftKings.  A trio of Baltimore tight ends combined for 99 yards on 10 catches last week and over the last three, the Steelers have given up 26 receptions for 314 yards and three touchdowns to the position.  He’s dependent on getting in the end zone but as long as he continues to play 84% of the snaps, he’ll see his 4-6 targets that he currently averages.   Again, Calvin Ridley will not sustain his touchdown rate from the last two weeks, someone else will be the beneficiary of Matt Ryan’s touchdown passes.  He’s a gamble that can easily pay off in this potential shootout.

Defense

Tennessee: at BUF (DK 4000; FD 3900)

An absolute must play on FanDuel as Tennessee is the 14th priced defense compared to being the most expensive on DraftKings.  Excluding the Vikings catastrophe, opposing defenses against Buffalo are averaging six sacks, two interceptions, and 16.33 fantasy points per game.  This is simply a flow chart play but it may be tough to squeeze this defense in lineups on DraftKings.  If able, this Titans defense that sacked Carson Wentz four times including a strip sack should find even better success against the Bills porous offensive line.

Los Angeles Rams: at SEA (DK 3800; FD 4700)

The Rams defense has forced nearly two turnovers per game against opposing offenses while scoring two touchdowns in four games.  Meanwhile, Seattle’s offense has struggled against superior defenses like the Broncos and Bears, allowing 12 sacks and five turnovers in those games.  The Rams are definitely in the caliber of the two defenses listed above while the Seattle offense is a shadow of what it was last year.  

Cleveland: vs BAL (DK 2500; FD 3300)

The public may lay off this defense after allowing 39 points to the Raiders offense but there is a lot to like about Cleveland heading into this divisional tilt.  The Baltimore offense has at minimum turned the ball over once and allowed two sacks in each of their first four games while the Cleveland defense has at minimum forced two turnovers and sacked the quarterback twice in their first four games.  Defenses that get to the quarterback and force turnovers are ones worth consideration each week in the hopes of a defensive score; Cleveland has the pieces to make that happen, even if it is against an improved Baltimore offense.

PRICE SHOPPING

Each week, I will identify what players are bargains based on the salary cap percentage difference they represent on the respective site.  Here are the notable week 4 bargains from both sites:

NOTABLE DRAFTKINGS BARGAINS

QB Patrick Mahomes: 1.93

QB Cam Newton: 1.2

RB Austin Ekeler: 1.93

RB Aaron Jones: 1.56

RB Kareem Hunt: 1.2

WR Mohamed Sanu: 1.33

TE Austin Hooper: 2.33

TE Travis Kelce: 1.83

NOTABLE FANDUEL BARGAINS

WR Emmanuel Sanders: 3.04

WR Brandin Cooks: 1.8

DEF Tennessee: 1.5

DFS Week 5: DRAFT Targets & Players to Avoid

Last week I helped you avoid Wilson and Drake and guided you to upside glory with Gio Bernard and Phillip Rivers. I’ll be helping you navigate this user-friendly and competitive way to play DFS every week this season. My advice is based on 6 team standard fast draft formats.

If you’re not familiar with DRAFT I highly encourage you to jump into your App store or Google Play store and download the most user-friendly and fun DFS app out there. You can try DRAFT by taking advantage of our promo code “Top2”-you’ll get a free $3 entry. My takes are a combination of stats, match-up analysis, and what I’ve seen drafting this week: to draft with me next week add me MattHicks15.

Quarterback

Favorite Play: Matt Ryan (ATL) vs PIT

Ryan is putting the “hot” in “Hot-Lanta” right now. Despite being an afterthought in fantasy drafts this offseason, Ryan has finished as a Top 10 quarterback 3 times this season, and as a Top 5 quarterback twice. He’s currently QB2 overall, QB6 in passing yards, QB6 in passing touchdowns, and has as many interceptions (2) as rushing touchdowns. This week, Ryan faces off against a dismal Pittsburgh defense that has allowed the 3rd most fantasy points to opposing quarterbacks this season. They’ve allowed an average of 324 passing yards and 3 touchdowns per game. Dodge the bigger names and lock in Ryan for Week 5.

High Upside:  Alex Smith (WAS) vs NO

Smith has been pedestrian so far this season, compared to his 2017 re-breakout season. Smith’s done well to protect the ball, with just one interception so far, but has been held back from fantasy relevancy by his 4 total touchdowns. In Week 5 Smith gets to fix that: he plays the Saints, who have allowed 11 touchdowns over the first 4 weeks (two games of which were against Tyrod Taylor and Eli Manning). Smith is coming off an early season BYE that gives Washington a leg up on a hot Saints team. We’re likely to see a shoot-out and Smith (and his fantasy owners) will reap the benefits.

Do Not DRAFT: Patrick Mahomes (KC) vs JAX

He’s match-up proof, right? We’re going to see this week: the QB1 sophomore sensation is facing out against the best passing defense in the league. The Jaguars are allowing just 183 passing yards per game to opposing quarterbacks. Mahomes has gotten his greatest fantasy return from his league-leading touchdown total (14) but Jacksonville has allowed just 1 passing touchdown to opposing quarterbacks in 4 weeks’ worth of play. Don’t get me wrong, Mahomes will still play well, but he won’t be a top 6 guy and he will demand first 3 rounds value-so I’m out on him in DRAFT this week.

Running Back

Favorite Play: Melvin Gordon (LAC) vs OAK

Per usual, Gordon is flying under the radar this season. Gordon has been tearing up opposing defenses in both the rushing game (276 yards, 2 touchdowns) and passing game (24 receptions, 199 yards, 3 touchdowns). Now he faces off against the Raiders who have allowed the third most fantasy points to opposing running backs this season. He’s finished as a top 10 RB in 3 of his 4 weeks this season, making him consistent in every sense of the word. Consistency, when mixed with upside is the key to fantasy victory. Give me Gordon, or give me a loss.

Upside Target: Carlos Hyde (CLE) vs BAL

I bet your reaction was the same most on DRAFT will have this week: no way I’m playing this guy against the Ravens. That’s where the value comes in for the RB6 overall on the season. Hyde isn’t putting up flashy numbers (98 rushing yards is his season high) but he is getting significant volume (21 carries per game). Hyde’s also finding the endzone, a lot, in fact he’s found the endzone in every game this season (and twice against the Jets in Week 3). Hyde should be available in the 5th round of your drafts, allowing you to wrap up your roster with a safe floor and high upside.

Do Not DRAFT: James Conner (PIT) vs ATL

Conner’s an easy guy to get stuck with this week: he’s still a hot name coming off an early start in what is supposed to be a high-powered offense and has a juicy match-up against an Atlanta offense notorious for allowing fantasy points to opposing running backs this season. Conner, however, is on a downward trend that should force even his staunchest truthers to pump the brakes. Since getting 31 carries in Week 1, Conner has just 32 total carries in Weeks 2-4. In Week 4, he had just 9 carries and rushed for less than 20 yards for the second time in four weeks. Conner has also seen his snap count consistently drop: he played in 92% of snaps in Week 1, 89% in Week 2, 85% in Week 3, and 79% in Week 4. The Steelers are likely going to be in a high scoring game, where they’re desperately trying to play catch-up as they slowly watch their season slip through their hands. I don’t want the struggling running back who has been non-existent in the passing game in that situation, and neither should you.

Wide Receiver/Tight End

Favorite Play: Julio Jones (ATL) vs PIT

I’m fully aware that Julio hasn’t scored a touchdown this season, and I fully don’t care. Jones is leading the league in yards, averaging 125 yards/game this season and has a fantastic match-up and the hottest QB in the game throwing him the ball (see gush session above). Pittsburgh has allowed the second most yards to opposing wideouts this season, and the third most touchdowns. Stack Julio with Ryan, sit back, and dominate your line-ups this week. Julio is worth taking at the first round turn all week.

Upside Target: Alshon Jeffery (PHI) vs MIN

Alshon had a great return to NFL action in Week 4; catching 8 of his 9 targets for 105 yards and a touchdown. Jeffery proved to be an essential piece of the Eagles offense, opening up the outside for Wentz and giving him a legitimate deep ball threat (13.1 yards/target) to offset Agholor and whatever running back happens to be in the game at any given time. Jeffery faces off against the Vikings defense in Week 5, which isn’t as scary as it sounds: they’ve given up the 8th most fantasy points and the 6th most touchdowns to opposing wide receivers. Jeffery is likely to sneak into the 4th and 5th rounds, making him a huge value for you this week; get him cheap while you can.

Do Not DRAFT: Odell Beckham Jr. (NYG) vs CAR

OBJ has been extremely average this season. He’s caught less than 100 yards in two of four weeks, despite being targeted at least 9 times per game. It’s tough to decide what’s more concerning: Beckham Jr’s zero touchdowns or his inability to be a factor at all down the field. His season high yards/reception is 12.8 (Week 2 vs Dallas) and averaged just 8.6 yards/reception in Week 4 vs a weak New Orleans secondary. This doesn’t seem to be the week for a break through, either: the Panthers have allowed just 2 passing touchdowns this season. You’re probably going to have to spend a 1st or 2nd round pick on this flashy name, a gamble that’s not likely to pay off for you.

Week 5 Wide Receiver and Tight End Buy/Sell Targets

Week 5 is on the horizon, look alive people! We’re past the quarter mark of the season and week 4 certainly did not disappoint. Right about now, you’re either panicking and giving up on fantasy football or you’re strategizing how to bounce back. We take a look at some targets for you to capitalize on and cash in with.

Wide Receivers, Buying:

Robert Woods

We’ve known Woods can play in LA, dating back to last season he was a very viable fantasy option. This year, it seems like he’s found himself teetering on the edge of the WR 2/3 position in LA. Even so, his target share is huge. 34 targets through the first 4 weeks with a 72% catch rate that is lessened purely because of his week 1 match-up where he caught 30% of the balls thrown his way. Now, coming of a 5 for 5 week where he had over 100 yards and a touchdown, I think you buy him. To be honest, you buy anyone in the Rams offense. It may be hard for you to get him away from his current owner but his continued volume and the Rams offensive ability makes him a great buy target as he’s not necessarily the top receiver in LA.

Taylor Gabriel

Here’s a deep one for you. A name that doesn’t elicit sparkling memories of fantasy dominance. Gabriel is showing he is a weapon for Trubisky and is getting the looks needed to make him valuable. In week 4 which was an absolute blowout for the Bears, a game where they didn’t need to throw but kept doing so, Gabriel saw 7 targets and caught them all. He had over 100 yards but the most notable and important thing is that he was the redzone target. Both of his touchdowns came when they were 3 yards out from the endzone. He’s showing that he can be trusted when it counts to his QB who has already supplied him with almost 30 targets. I want Gabriel on my team, specially as the Bears find their identity.

Wide Receivers, Selling:

Marvin Jones Jr 

It hurts me to say this, I love MJJ. But, The lions offense, as good as it can be, isn’t good enough to feed the mouths they have. Golladay is emerging as a younger, more efficient target. Tate is consistently a PPR machine and is showing amazing athleticism for his age. MJ has 29 targets through 4 weeks with only 15 targets, catching barely half the targets he gets. Combine that with low yardage, 58 yards on average through the first 4 games, he is seemingly touchdown dependent. Sell him and get a package or someone who has a currently better catch percentage.

Devin Funchess

He’s so..meh. Maybe it’s cause it’s early in the season and they had a week 4 bye but even so, his stats of 21 targets, 14 receptions and 185 yards and 1 touchdown just aren’t thrilling me. He has potential, look to last season where he saw over 100 targets, over 800 yards and 8 touchdowns. I think his problem is still his catch percentage, last year it was 56%, this year, so far, it’s sitting around 65%. It’s a concern and I’m just not feeling him at this point.

Tight End, Buying:

Vance McDonald

He missed week 1. Week 2, he saw a slightly increased role, week 3, he solidified his position as TE1 in Pittsburgh. Week 4, 5 catches on 5 targets for 62 yards. A very modest stat line and if he was a WR, no one would be overly jazzed about him. But, he’s a TE, and this year it feels like there’s no Grade A, high volume, high yardage TEs. Big Ben will look for him and going into a game against Atlanta where they’re missing their coverage backer, I think Vance is poised for another massive game. I scooped him where I could and look forward to reaping the rewards.

Tight End, Selling

Rob Gronkowski

What? The all time great of the TE world? Sell him? Yes. I’m a Patriot’s fan, I love Gronk and all that he does, I love his loyalty to Brady. But I do not love his attention he receives from other teams. Through 4 weeks he’s seen 23 targets, a low amount for the number 1 option on the Patriot’s offense. Week 1 was a boom of a week with over 120 yards and a touchdown, he hasn’t seen the endzone since. 4 catches for 44 yards in a game where the Patriots blew the Dolphins out, say hello to double coverage. Yes, Gordon is getting healthy, Edelman is coming back, their offense should be humming soon. But, defenses will always focus the biggest target on the field and that is Gronk without a doubt. Sell him and get the RB1 or WR1 your team needs and a few role players too.

Week 5 Quarterback Streamers

Last Week’s Results: If you streamed Andy Dalton last week he came through for you in a big way scoring 30.78 fantasy points and finishing 9th at the position. That brings the average points for my main streaming options up to 19.94 with a good recovery from the down week 3. This season has been wild so far for fantasy scoring; a lot of guys are putting up big numbers each week. It has been exciting to see. Often coming from guys you would not expect it from.

Week 5 has bye weeks for Tampa Bay and Chicago, so if you were riding the hot hand of Ryan Fitzpatrick you may need one of the guys below. Russell Wilson owners might also be considering streaming; he is coming of a bad game and has a tough match up against the Rams this week. The Seattle offensive line is likely in trouble this week. Here are some guys still available in at least 50% of Yahoo leagues I like this week.

Main Streaming Option: Blake Bortles

Blake Bortles was my choice 2 weeks ago and even though he disappointed me I am going with him again for week 5. Bortles goes against the Chiefs and their defense that can’t seem to stop anyone so far this season. The Jaguars have a good defense that should slow down the Chiefs’ offense a little, but Jacksonville is going to need to score some points to win this game. The Jaguars have multiple weapons at WR and Bortles will spread the ball around to whoever gets open. Additionally without Leonard Fournette it means TJ Yeldon will be on the field a lot and he is a good option for catching passes out of the backfield, which will only help Bortles this week. When Fournette is out Bortles needs to do more for the offense, which is a good thing for his fantasy value. There are a few high over/under numbers this week, but 51.5 says the expectation is that there will be a good amount of points scored in this game.

Alternate 1: Marcus Mariota

It has been a weird season for Mariota. He got hurt and then was active but not completely healthy so he backed up Blaine Gabbert, but ended up coming in once Gabbert was hurt. Last week was his best of the season against the Eagles. The most promising thing was see Mariota carrying the ball 10 times and adding a rushing TD. The value he adds with his legs along with connection he showed with Corey Davis should pay off against the Buffalo Bills. The biggest concern with playing Mariota in this game is that the Titans’s defense shuts down the Bills offense and he doesn’t need to throw very much in the game. The Titans’ RBs have not done a lot on the ground, so even if the Titans don’t need to score a lot they will need Mariota to win this game.

Alternate 2: Joe Flacco

It feels weird to recommend Joe Flacco, but the truth is he has been consistent for fantasy this year. It seems his team drafting a QB has lit a bit of a fire under Flacco. The Ravens greatly improved their receiving core since last year. John Brown has given them a legitimate big play weapon and Crabtree is better than anyone who was catching passes for them last year. It seems like involve 4 TEs every week catching passes, while none of them are particularly relevant for fantasy they collectively help Flacco’s numbers. Flacco has thrown for multiple TDs in 3 of 4 games this year and is averaging over 300 yards a game. The Browns’ defense gave up for 400 yards to Derek Carr last week, so they can be beat through the air. It might not feel great to hit submit with Flacco in your line up, but don’t be afraid it will work out better than you expect.

Those are my streaming picks for week 5. Check back next week when both the Saints and Lions are on bye, which means 2 very good fantasy QBs will not be available. After getting back on track in week 4, it is time to get on a roll with my streaming picks.