Another week, another stressful week of adding, swapping, and maybe even trading. You might feel like you need an entire revamping of your team, but sometimes staying patient with certain guys is the way to go. As the season has gone on, players have separated themselves or have fallen into a great spot. Here are some suggestions for players that are in a great or unfavorable position in Week 5.
Start: Sam Bradford (PHI) – The Eagles offense has been a disappointment thus far, but this week might be a turnaround for the entire team. Even though Bradford hasn’t looked great, he’s turned a couple of terrible games into some solid fantasy performances. The Saints have not been able to cover anyone this year, and Bradford and the Eagles should take advantage of this.
Marcus Mariota (TEN) – The Buffalo Bills have allowed the 3rd most fantasy points to opposing quarterbacks, while being in the top 10 in fewest fantasy points by opposing running backs. With that in mind, the Titans’ gameplay should be nothing other than letting Mariota loose. No RB for the Titans has been consistent this year, and none should be trusted more in fantasy than the franchise QB.
Sit: Derek Carr (OAK) – Carr seemed to be ready to take his spot in the ranks of the above average quarterbacks following a a couple of great games, but Week 4 was a total disappointment. Carr failed to pass for over 200 yards and had a pick against one of the worst secondaries on paper in the Bears. The Denver Broncos will be a much harder task, with elite pass rushers in Demarcus Ware and Von Miller, and the number one ranked passing defense so far.
Peyton Manning (DEN) – Manning has been on of the biggest disappointments this year, but maybe we were all too naive to expect him to continue to play at an elite level until he’s 50. I never thought for a second he would have another 2013 year, but I didn’t expect him to be this bad. He is 21st among quarterbacks in fantasy football this year. The running backs have been awful for the Broncos this year, which will force Peyton to throw more than he should. By the end of the game, he will likely have much more sacks and interceptions combined than touchdowns.
Start: T.J. Yeldon (JAX) – Yeldon finally looked the role of a feature back last week, as he got his first ever 100-yard game. The Buccaneers were run over the first few weeks of the season, but then had a fluke performance in an ugly game against the Panthers. Expect Yeldon to keep it rolling without a consistent passing game for the Jags.
Danny Woodhead (SD) – Woodhead has denied all doubters’ claims that he cannot be a consistent fantasy starter. He has been much more than an occasional check-down for Philip Rivers; he has done more with his carries than rookie Melvin Gordon. The Chargers go against the Steelers this week, who have been very good against the run. However, they have let running backs, such as Dion Lewis, get loose in the passing game. Continue to start Woodhead as long as Gordon struggles.
Justin Forsett (BAL) – It looked like the 2014 breakout year for Forsett was not going to carry over until he rushed for 150 yards last week. Last week showed that, as long as you have studs in the middle of your offensive line, such as Marshall Yanda, you can run the ball on anyone. Anyone happens to be the Browns this week, who will let anyone run on them. Forsett is in line for an even better performance than last week.
Sit: Jeremy Hill (CIN) – Hill’s fantasy season seemed like a disaster as he fumbled numerous times and lost more and more carries to Giovanni Bernard. This was before Hill scored three times in Week 4. However, this was on only 9 carries against a sub-par Chiefs defense. This week, the Bengals go against the Seahawks, who have given up the second fewest points to opposing RBs. Hill could be a consistent play in weeks to come but not against the Seahawks.
Ameer Abdullah (DET) – Abdullah has not been bad this year, but he has not been overly productive either. Unfortunately for him, the Lions have had tough defenses to play against, such as Seattle and Denver. This week shouldn’t be any easier, when they go against the Arizona Cardinals. The Lions are likely to fall into even a deeper hole, and Abdullah is very unlikely to score this week.
Start: Jeremy Maclin (KC) – In case you didn’t hear, a Chiefs wide receiver finally caught a touchdown pass. Also, if you didn’t hear, Jeremy Maclin has 289 yards and 19 receptions in the past two weeks. The Chicago Bears, the Chiefs opponent this week, have given up a whopping 8 touchdowns to receivers this year. This time, Chiefs receivers might only go one week without catching a touchdown pass.
Kamar Aiken (BAL) – For the most part of this early season, Joe Flacco has thrown the ball to Steve Smith and seemingly only to Smith. With him out, Aiken steps in to the number one receiver spot. Even though Aiken is pretty inexperienced, he has improved throughout the year and earned more playing time every week. He also caught a touchdown pass last week after Smith got hurt. He could have a huge game against the Browns this week.
Leonard Hankerson (ATL) – One figures that Julio Jones cannot have an All-Pro performance every single week. One would also think that someone else would be open for QB Matt Ryan in the red zone if defenses were focusing mainly on Jones. That person would be right, and the player that gets these chances is Hankerson. He has gotten a touchdown in two of the last three games, and goes against his old team, the Washington Redskins, who have been awful against receivers the last two weeks.
Sit: Golden Tate (DET) – Tate has been another disappointing part of the Lions offense, mainly because of Matthew Stafford’s struggles against very good defenses. Even so, Tate has only caught a little more than half of his targets, along with a few drops. Tate has not been himself this year, and Week 5 is probably not the week he and the Lions turn things around.
Michael Crabtree (OAK) – For many of the same reasons why Derek Carr is not a good start this week, neither is Crabtree. Even though he might have finally found a decent fit in Oakland, he has been pretty inconsistent this year. Also, the Broncos are 3rd in fewest fantasy points to opposing receivers. It’s time to pick up someone else, such as Aiken to start over him.
Start: Antonio Gates (SD) – Gates returns from a four-game game suspension to open the season this week. We’ll see if he’ll look has young as he did last year, but that may have had to do with whatever he was suspended for. Either way, the Steelers have given up the fifth most points to tight ends this year, and Rivers and the Chargers will likely want to give Gates a lot of action in the future Hall of Famer’s 2015 coming out party.
Sit: Larry Donnel (NYG) – Donnel is a very large, talented tight end, but he is not the best pass-catcher at the position. Eli Manning loves to target Donnel, but it is never for big gains and is usually not in the red zone. Also, Donnel has been known to mis-read defensive backs and run the wrong route, or at least not the one Eli thought he was running. The only chance he has of having a good fantasy day is a lucky touchdown, which is unlikely against the 49ers.