Rejoice, Week 5 is here (we think). With Covid-19 making its presence felt across the league, we won't celebrate until the Chicago Bears and Tampa Bay Buccaneers officially kick off Thursday night.
As of now, however, all games are a go, besides the first two bye weeks of the season, so we have fantasy advice to share. So, let’s get right into it and discuss the best, and worst, options for your fantasy lineup this weekend.
- On Bye: Green Bay Packers, Detroit Lions
- Covid-19 Watch: New England vs Denver, Las Vegas at Kansas City, Tennessee vs Buffalo
Deshaun Watson vs Jacksonville
With Bill O’Brien out of the picture in Houston, Watson and the Texans will look to get back on track offensively. They currently rank 23rd in offensive scoring, but this is a good place to start to turn that around. The Jaguars defense has averaged 24 fantasy points per game to enemy quarterbacks, so put Watson in your lineups with confidence.
Justin Herbert at New Orleans
The Chargers are banged up offensively, but so is the New Orleans defense. Herbert has scored over 20 fantasy points in two of his first three starts as the Saints defense is surrendering an average of 22-plus points per game to opposing quarterbacks. Fire up Herbert this week if you’re in need of a quarterback.
Carson Wentz at Pittsburgh
Wentz finally got the Eagles in the win column last Sunday night, but a Week 5 date with the Steelers is not a great place to look to build a winning streak. According to PFF, Wentz has the lowest passing grade this season as he continues to turn the ball over. The Steelers defense has also been notoriously tough on quarterback, surrendering the third-fewest points to quarterback since last season. Pair that with Wentz’s banged up supporting cast and its best to leave him on your bench this weekend.
Kirk Cousins at Seattle
It’s always tough to trust Kirk Cousins, but he has a strong matchup against Seattle this weekend. The Seahawks pass defense has been miserable this season, allowing an average of over 400 passing yards, nine total touchdowns, and the second-most fantasy points to opposing quarterbacks. They will also be without Jamal Adams for the second straight week. The Vikings are known for being a run-first team, but they will have to throw the ball to keep up with Russell Wilson and co. Cousins has his best recipe for success on the season this week.
James Robinson at Houston
The undrafted rookie has put up an average of 18 touches and 111.5 scrimmage yards per game after the first four weeks of the season. He’s got a plus matchup this week against a struggling Texans defense that has allowed opposing backs to find the end zone six times and averaged the sixth-most fantasy points against them.
Devin Singletary at Tennessee
Singletary will be in line for a strong game if the Titans are able to play this weekend. Tennessee has struggled against the run this season, allowing four total touchdowns and the 11th most points to the position. After being hit hard by the coronavirus of late, we’d expect Buffalo to be up in this game, meaning a positive game script for Singletary as well. Even if running back Zack Moss returns from injury, Singletary should be in lineups this weekend.
Antonio Gibson vs Los Angeles Rams
Gibson has been Washington’s most efficient runner and is emerging as a playmaker through the air as well. He has established himself as the lead back, seeing 59 percent of the carries last week while getting three rushes inside the five-yard line. Gibson has now scored a touchdown in three straight game and his pass game involvement last week (4 catches for 82 yards) will keep him on the field even in blowouts going forward. He’ll go against a Rams defense this week that has allowed every running back they've faced to score double-digit fantasy points, so have him in your lineup.
David Montgomery vs Tampa Bay
The Tampa Bay defense is legit. They’ve allowed just the second fewest rushing yards to opposing running backs, making this a tough Thursday night matchup for Montgomery. He’s averaged just 3.0 yards per carry over the last two contests, a trend that should continue against this run defense allowing just 2.7 yards per carry (best in the league). He’ll need to be involved in the passing game to have any sort of fantasy value this week.
Gus Edwards vs Cincinnati
Gus the Bus is here! Even with Mark Ingram and rookie J.K. Dobbins in the rotation, it was Edwards who led the Baltimore backfield in snap percentage (40) and carries (nine) last week. Edwards has been great after contact, 4.44 yards after contact per attempt, and will go against the Cincinnati defense that has allowed the most rushing yards after contact this season, per PFF. Edwards should see touches early and as Baltimore is a heavy favorite entering this matchup, they’ll bring in their closer in Edwards for clean-up duty.
Justin Jefferson at Seattle
As we mentioned Cousins should be in line for a big game, so will his receivers. Jefferson has emerged as a serious threat in this Minnesota offense, rattling off 278 yards over the last two weeks. The Seahawks defense has allowed seven different receivers to go over 100-yards this season, so a third straight 100-yard game could be on the horizon for the rookie. Jefferson should be in your lineups for this Sunday night shootout.
Will Fuller vs Jacksonville
We also mentioned Deshaun Watson should be in line for a turn around, so his number one receiver should be started as well. Fuller has scored in back-to-back weeks now and in games he’s healthy has racked up a 26 percent target share in the Texans offense. In a game that should be high scoring, look for Fuller to stay hot against this Jacksonville secondary.
Tyler Boyd at Baltimore
Boyd has seen 39 targets over his last three games, securing at least seven of those 70 yards in all three contests, but the match up is not in his favor this weekend. The Ravens defense has allowed just 172.3 receiving yards to opposing teams and Boyd will must likely be stuck with Marlon Humphrey all afternoon. If a Bengals receiver is going to have a big game, it will most likely be Tee Higgins.
Michael Gallup vs New York Giants
Other than his dominate Week 3 performance, Gallup has been a disappointment through the first quarter of the season. Gallup is mainly being targeted downfield, making him a boom-or-bust option going forward. A tough matchup on the schedule this week, where he will see a lot of James Bradberry. The Giants defense as a whole has allowed just 221.5 passing yards per game, so leave Gallup on the bench.
Mecole Hardman vs Las Vegas
Hardman is finally producing consistently in the Kansas City offense, largely due to his improved usage. According to PFF, Hardman has ran just 39 routes over the last two weeks, but his 26 percent target rate on routes run is a team high. He played more snaps than Demarcus Robinson for the first time all season last week and posted his second straight game with four catches and a score. With his increased usage, he could be used if needed against a Raiders team he went for 4-61-1 against last year.
Tyler Higbee at Washington
Higbee only has 14 targets this year but has turned three of those into scores. The Washington Football Team has struggled against the position this season, four different tight ends to catch a touchdown against them (five touchdowns total). This should be the week the Rams look to get Higbee more involved in the air.
Evan Engram at Dallas
The Dallas defense is a train wreck, allowing 430.5 yards from scrimmage per game. Engram’s 30 targets are the third-most among tight ends this season as he has seen at least seven in three of four matchups. Dallas has allowed touchdowns to three different tight ends this year and Engram has scored 19-plus fantasy points in three of his last four matchups with the Cowboys. Have him in your lineups this weekend.
Jonnu Smith vs Buffalo
Smith has been sneaky good this season and a matchup with Buffalo should be another big game in the making. Buffalo has allowed the fifth-most fantasy points to tight ends over the past two weeks. On the season, they’ve allowed the most yards (359) and third-most receptions (31) to the position.
Mike Gesicki at San Francisco
Gesicki has just two catches over the last two weeks, continuing a string of unreliable contests. He has a tough matchup against the 49ers this weekend who held Zach Ertz to just nine yards on four catches last week. Keep Gesicki sidelined this weekend.
Trey Burton at Cleveland
Burton was activated off injured reserve last week and had just two catches. However, his five targets were the second most on the team. Indianapolis should be able to find success through the air over the middle of the field against the Browns, which is where Burton will be operating. He should be available on waiver wires if you're in need of a last second tight end.
Patriots Play of the Week
Damien Harris vs Denver
After being activated off injured reserve, Harris carried the ball 17 times resulting in 100 yards Monday night. He was a popular waiver wire add this week and, if the game script works in his favor, should be in for a big Sunday afternoon. With Cam Newton (Covid-19) likely sidelined again, Harris will see work early and often on the ground. He’ll lose work in the passing game to James White and Rex Burkhead, but he should be able to find the end-zone in what should be a run-heavy offensive approach from New England.
That wraps up this week’s preview and gives you all the information you need to win your matchup this week. If you have any additional questions regarding your lineup or specific players, leave a comment below or reach out on Twitter @iambrianhines. As always, I'm rooting for you.