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Lineup Prep: Week 6

Wed Oct 14 9:29am ET
By JEFF PAUR
Sr Fantasy Writer

Taylor setup for big Week 6


It certainly has been an interesting first five weeks of the season and I would expect more of the same going forward. This is going to be a season like none others. Hopefully, things keep playing out the way they have and we can get in a full season. I think the league has done a good job in navigating this to date. I’m not sure if it will be too easy going forward, though, if more teams have to have teams moved. This could make for a very interesting finish to the fantasy season. Hopefully, things break your way the rest of the way.

Now for my random thoughts for the week. . . . .

I’m not selling high on Robby Anderson. I think he is the real deal in this offense. He has at least five receptions every game and 99 or more yards all but a game. I really think he can keep up his great play in this offense. His starts isn’t a fluke. The Panthers are finding the right way to use him and utilizing his big-time talents. We always knew he was a talented player but consistency has always been the issue. Maybe some of that had to do with playing for the Jets.

First off, the injury to Dak Prescott was just brutal. You hate to see that happen to anyone, especially a star player like Prescott. As for the Cowboys offense, I do think it takes a bit of a hit with Andy Dalton as the starter. It won’t be a huge drop, though. Dalton can still move the offense. He is more than capable based on his track record and the weapons at his disposal. I also think he can help fantasy teams on a spot start basis. Just expect the passing numbers to suffer some with Dalton at the helm. He is not going to be throwing for 400-plus yards like Prescott was before getting injured. The biggest benefactor of the offense might be Ezekiel Elliott, who could get more touches both as a runner and receiver. His numbers could get even better.

The only real logical fit I see for Le’Veon Bell right now is New England. That would make the most sense because of his three-down ability. He would seem to be a good fit for the offense. But you never know what the Patriots are thinking. And they will do their homework before making any move for a player like Bell, who has some question marks when it comes to attitude. It will be interesting to see if the Patriots make the move to acquire the veteran back.

Justin Herbert just keeps impressing. His Monday night performance was special, throwing four touchdowns on the road against the Saints. He has two straight three-touchdown games and seems to be getting better on a weekly basis. I don’t think his start is a fluke. Herbert has the makings of something special, making him a possible fantasy star for years to come. He is the complete package at quarterback and has adjusted to the pro game much quicker than anticipated.

I’m not too down on Lamar Jackson just yet. His big issue is a lack of rushing touchdowns, having just one. That should change in the coming weeks. He still has multiple scores three of five games and has at least 45-rushing yards all but a game. He’ll still be a top-five fantasy quarterback by the end of the season. If someone wants to get rid of Jackson, I would have no problem taking him. I think he’ll get it going.

The return of Alex Smith was just remarkable last week. Just an unbelievable story. You have to root for the guy to keep it going after almost losing his leg two years ago. He might not be the starter going forward as long as Kyle Allen is healthy, but it was sure great seeing him get a chance on the field last week. This is the type of stuff that is made into movies.

I might have more shares of DK Metcalf than any other player this season and sure feel good about that. He has lived up to the preseason hype. Metcalf has at least 92 yards every game and touchdowns four of five. He is the top receiver in the Seahawks explosive passing game and should continue to play at a high level. Metcalf is a physical freak, making him a very tough cover. He can do it all. Enjoy the breakout.

I do think the Browns are for real. The offense just looks so much better, playing to Baker Mayfield’s strengths. A good offensive line and top rushing attack can do wonders for the play of the quarterback. The Browns seem to have found that formula for the offense. Plus, you can’t overlook the defense. Myles Garrett is one of the best pass rushers in all of football and the secondary can make plays. Cleveland is a pretty complete team on both sides of the ball and should contend for the AFC North title. The game this weekend should be a great one between the Browns/Steelers.

News and Notes: The Jets released running back Le’Veon Bell on Tuesday. He becomes a free agent and free to sign with any team. Meanwhile, the Jets will start Frank Gore at running back going forward. . . . . With the recent outbreaks in the NFL, the league has tightened the close-contact exposure COVID-19 rules, stating any player or staff member with close contact with a positive individual must be isolated for at least five days, even if the person is negative and remains asymptomatic.

HOT PLAYS

Adam Thielen, WR, Vikings. Thielen has been red hot this season. He has 26-plus fantasy points three of five games. He also has touchdowns all but one game and two 100-yard showings. He is having a big rebound season as the clear top target for Kirk Cousins in the passing game. Expect another big showing this week against the Falcons, a team 31st against the pass and allowing the third most points per game.

Myles Gaskin, RB, Dolphins. Gaskin scored his first touchdown of the season last week, finishing with 91 total yards and five receptions. It was the first time all season Gaskin topped 20 fantasy points. He has been getting more and more work in Dolphins offense, having double-digit fantasy points three straight games. He should continue his solid production this week. Gaskin plays the Jets, a team that has allowed nine rushing touchdowns and give up 129-rushing yards per game.

Ben Roethlisberger, QB, Steelers. Roethlisberger is off to a great start this year, having 21-plus fantasy points all four games. He has multiple touchdowns every game and at least 229-passing yards all four games. Roethlisberger also has just one interception on the season, doing a great job of taking care of the ball. He should continue his hot ways this week against the Browns. Cleveland is 30th against the pass and has allowed 12-passing touchdowns this season.

Mark Andrews, TE, Ravens. Andrews has been solid once again for fantasy teams. He has 17-plus fantasy points three of five games. He also has scores three of those games. He is about a must start for fantasy teams in this explosive Ravens offense. Andrews has a great matchup with the Eagles, a team that allows the third most fantasy points to tight ends. Philadelphia is average against the pass, allowing 241-passing yards per game.

Johnathan Taylor, RB, Colts. Taylor hasn’t exactly lit it up his rookie year but has been consistent. He has double-digit fantasy points four of five games. Taylor also has scores three of this games. He has topped 70-rushing yards just once, though. But with the Colts passing game struggling, it might be time for the Colts to use Taylor more often. And that could start this week against the Bengals, a team that struggles to stop the run. Cincinnati is 29th overall against the rush, allowing 159-rushing yards per game.

COLD PLAYS 

Tyler Boyd, WR, Bengals. Boyd has been the best receiver for the Bengals this year. He has two games with 20-plus fantasy points and seven or more receptions. He has endured a couple down games, though, having fewer than double-digit points two times. He has fewer than 45 yards each of those two games. It would not surprise to seem him have another down game this week against a very good Colts defense. Indianapolis is first overall against the pass, allowing just 180-passing yards per game.

Travis Fulgham, WR, Eagles. Fulgham had a breakout game last week, catching 10 passes for 152 yards and a touchdown. He has scores two straight games and has come out of nowhere to lead the Eagles in receiving. He is no sure thing, though, despite his great recent play. And the likely return of Alshon Jeffery clouds things just a little bit more for Fulgham. It would not surprise to see him come back down to earth this week against the Ravens, a team that allows the fewest amount of points in all of football.

Jamaal Williams, RB, Packers. Williams had his best game of the season his last time out. He caught eight passes for 95 yards, getting a big workout in the passing game with the Packers missing some options at receiver. This was his first game of the season with double-digit fantasy points, though. And the return of Davante Adams this week should take some targets away from Williams in the passing game. He should see a drop in fantasy production, getting around eight or so fantasy points. Don’t expect a repeat of Week 4. Plus, he plays the Bucs, a team that is first overall against the run.

Brandon Aiyuk, WR, 49ers. Aiyuk is starting to make waves in the 49ers passing game. He has double-digit fantasy points two of three games. He has more than 50 total yards two of those games and found the end zone in two games (both times on the ground). The 49ers are finding ways to get the ball in his hands and he is producing. Aiyuk has a tough matchup for success this week against the Rams, though. There is a chance Jalen Ramsey shadows him all day, which could be bad news for Aiyuk. Plus, the 49ers are third overall against the pass, allowing just 216-passing yards per game.

Nick Foles, QB, Bears. Foles has been a little all over the map since taking over as the starter for the Bears. He has shown flashes of some really good things but made some poor throws as well. He is a hard player for fantasy teams to trust because of his inconsistency. And he has fewer than 16 fantasy points each of his two starts this season. His only game with more than 20 fantasy points was the game he came in relief of Mitchell Trubisky. Don’t expect Folks to get going this week against the Panthers. Carolina has been stingy against the pass, ranking fourth overall. Plus, the Panthers have allowed just six passing touchdowns all season.

SLEEPERS

Chase Edmonds, RB, Cardinals. Edmonds doesn’t get the workload of starter Kenyan Drake but he makes more plays with his touches. It just seems a matter of time before Edmonds starts getting more work. He has 15-plus fantasy points two straight and five receptions in each of those games. Edmonds has touchdowns three of five games. He is yet to have double-digit touches any game but look for that to change this week. Edmonds plays the Cowboys, a team that allows 156-rushing yards per game and seven rushing touchdowns.

Mecole Hardman, WR, Chiefs. Hardman gets a chance for more targets with Sammy Watkins out of the lineup. Hardman hasn’t done much this year but hit double-digit fantasy points two games. He has four receptions two of three games and 50 or more yards two of those games. He should be involved in a high-scoring game with the Bills this week, meaning he could get some chances to make some big plays. He is a sneaky play as a No. 3 receiver.

Gardner Minshew, QB, Jaguars. Minshew has been more bad than good this year. He has been a top play all but a game. Minshew has at least 22 fantasy points four of five games. He has multiple scores four of those games and three 300-yard showings. Minshew keeps getting it done on a weekly basis for fantasy teams. Expect more of the same this week against the Lions, a team that allows 32 points per game.

Devonta Freeman, RB, Giants. Freeman got it going last week, his third with the Giants. He had 87 total yards and a touchdown. Freeman has two straight games with double-digit fantasy points. He seems to be up to speed in the Giants offense and is producing with his chances. Look for another good showing from Freeman this week against Washington, a team 130-rushing yards per game. Plus, Washington has allowed eight rushing touchdowns.

Preston Williams, WR, Dolphins. Williams finally got going last week, having his first game with more than 50 yards. He had four receptions for 106 yards and a touchdown. He has scores two of three games. He is becoming a bigger part of the offense as the season progresses. He has a matchup this week to continue his recent success, playing the Jets. New York allows 266-passing yards per game.

High/Low Scoring Games

Each week we will take a look at some of the high and low scoring games for the coming week. In high scoring affairs, get your marginal players on those teams in your lineup to take advantage of the possible points barrage. And in the low scoring games, keep those marginal players on the bench and make sure to have your defenses involved in those contests.

High Scoring Games: Texans/Titans, Falcons/Vikings, Lions/Jaguars, Chiefs/Bills, Cardinals/Cowboys.

Low Scoring Games: Bengals/Colts, Broncos/Patriots,

Bye Weeks: Raiders, Saints, Chargers, Seahawks.

Jeff Paur is a two-time finalist for FSWA Fantasy Football Writer of the Year and won the FSWA award for Best Fantasy Football Article on the Web in 2011. He also was the most accurate expert in 2012, winning the FSTA Fantasy Football Accuracy Award. If you have any questions for Jeff, email him at jeff@rtsports.com. Follow Jeff on Twitter @jeffpaur.

Top Headlines

Five Waiver Wire Adds: Week 12

The Paur Report
Player Notes
Tyler Higbee Nov 25 9:33pm ET

Los Angeles Rams TE Tyler Higbee (elbow) banged up his elbow during the Week 11 game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, which is why he did not practice Wednesday, Nov. 25. Head coach Sean McVay said the tight end is considered 'day-to-day'.

Fantasy Spin: Higbee entered the season with high expectations from a fantasy perspective, but he has really only one impressive game while mostly being equaled or outplayed by Gerald Everett. At this point Higbee is only worth retaining in the deepest of fantasy leagues heading into Week 12 and beyond.

From TheHuddle

Atlanta Falcons Nov 25 9:00pm ET

The Atlanta Falcons Defense should stay benched this week when the Las Vegas Raiders come to town. Las Vegas has a capable QB in Derek Carr, along with solid weapons such as Josh Jacobs, Darren Waller, and Nelson Agholor. Meanwhile, Atlanta has allowed at least 20 points in nine of 10 games. The unit has also dealt with injuries throughout the season and that has hindered its overall strength. There are better options to start this week.

From RotoBaller

Younghoe Koo Nov 25 9:00pm ET

Atlanta Falcons kicker Younghoe Koo is a terrific start this week against Las Vegas. Last week, the kicker hit three field goals, including two from over 50 yards. Overall, Koo has gone 24-for-25 in field goals this season and 18-for-21 in extra points. The Raiders rank in the middle against fantasy kickers, so he is a great starting option.

From RotoBaller

Hayden Hurst Nov 25 8:50pm ET

Atlanta Falcons tight end Hayden Hurst is a low-end TE1 this week if active. The TE is currently dealing with an ankle injury and it remains to be seen if he plays. Hurst got nothing last week on two targets but has generally been decent this season. He has gotten at least 50 yards and six targets in six of 10 games this season, so he does bring the potential for some solid numbers. The Raiders are middle-tier against fantasy tight ends, so Hurst is certainly worth starting if he plays. Managers can only hope last week's performance was an outlier.

From RotoBaller

Aaron Donald Nov 25 8:43pm ET

Los Angeles Rams DL Aaron Donald (non-injury), LB Micah Kiser (knee) and TE Tyler Higbee (elbow) didn't practice Wednesday, Nov. 25. OL Brian Allen (knee) was limited.

From TheHuddle

Russell Gage Nov 25 8:40pm ET

Atlanta Falcons wide receiver Russell Gage is in the flex conversation this week. Due to Julio Jones going down with an injury last week, Gage had seven receptions for 58 yards on 12 targets. This week, Jones is still dealing with a hamstring injury and may be a game-time decision. If Jones doesn't play, Gage is the biggest player to benefit and would be a flex piece to start this week. Nevertheless, there is a bit of risk considering the WR has only posted over 50 yards in four games and doesn't necessarily get all the attention even when Jones is out. Still, he's the best guy to trust for fantasy over Olamide Zaccheaus and Christian Blake. The Raiders are middle-tier against fantasy wideouts.

From RotoBaller

K'Waun Williams Nov 25 8:33pm ET

San Francisco 49ers CB K'Waun Williams (ankle) and LB Demetrius Flannigan-Fowles (hamstring) didn't practice Wednesday, Nov. 25. DL Arik Armstead (non-injury) was limited and OL Hroniss Grasu (non-injury) practiced in full.

From TheHuddle

Julio Jones Nov 25 8:30pm ET

Atlanta Falcons wide receiver Julio Jones is currently dealing with a hamstring injury and could be a game-time decision this week against the Raiders. Thus, if he plays, he will be a lower-end WR1 and certainly a riskier option to start considering his injury. Last week, Jones only managed two receptions for 39 yards on two targets. When healthy this season, the WR has seen his usual volume and put up fantastic numbers, including three 100-yard games. Nevertheless, proceed with caution this week on Jones and monitor his status closely. If he cannot play, Russell Gage would see an uptick in value.

From RotoBaller

Calvin Ridley Nov 25 8:30pm ET

Atlanta Falcons wide receiver Calvin Ridley is a low-end WR1 this week against the Raiders. It's worth noting he is dealing with a foot injury right now, but there is no sign that his status for Sunday is in jeopardy. Ridley posted five receptions for 90 yards on nine targets last week and has gotten at least 90 yards in five of nine games. He has also seen at least seven targets in seven of nine games. With Julio Jones ailing, Ridley could see more looks on Sunday if Jones doesn't play. Regardless, he remains a solid play due to his weekly volume and consistency.

From RotoBaller

Jake Kumerow Nov 25 8:23pm ET

Buffalo Bills C Jordan Devey, C Jonotthan Harrison, WR Jake Kumerow and LB Darron Lee were designated as protected practice squad players for Week 12 Wednesday, Nov. 25.

From TheHuddle

Kenjon Barner Nov 25 8:23pm ET

Tampa Bay Buccaneers RB Kenjon Barner, PK Greg Joseph, DT Jeremiah Ledbetter and G John Molchon were designated as protected practice squad players for Week 12 Wednesday, Nov. 25.

From TheHuddle

Tevin Coleman Nov 25 8:23pm ET

San Francisco 49ers RB Tevin Coleman (knee) was limited at practice Wednesday, Nov. 25.

Fantasy Spin: Coleman and Jerick McKinnon will be splitting backfield work until Raheem Mostert and Jeff Wilson are able to return to the lineup. Both make for a risky FLEX option with McKinnon slightly safer due to more work in the passing game.

From TheHuddle

Todd Gurley Nov 25 8:20pm ET

Atlanta Falcons running back Todd Gurley II is a low-end RB1 this week versus the Raiders. The RB is coming off a season-low eight carries for 26 yards but has nevertheless remained decent on this offense. Gurley still has had double-digit carries in nine of 10 games and has rushed for over 50 yards in seven of 10 games. That volume and the fact that the Raiders allow the fourth-most points to fantasy backs makes Gurley a solid play. He is dealing with a knee injury, so his status is worth monitoring.

From RotoBaller

Sheldon Rankins Nov 25 8:13pm ET

New Orleans Saints DT Sheldon Rankins (knee) was designated for return from the Reseve/Injured list Wednesday, Nov. 25.

From TheHuddle

Matt Ryan Nov 25 8:10pm ET

Atlanta Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan is a low-end QB1 against the Raiders this weekend. Ryan has been a bit streaky this season and posted 232 yards and two picks last week. Overall, he has thrown for over 300 yards in only three of 10 games this season and only has four games with multiple passing touchdowns. The Raiders allow the ninth-most points to fantasy QBs, so this is a good week to start Ryan if you have him.

From RotoBaller

Montravius Adams Nov 25 8:03pm ET

Green Bay Packers DE Montravius Adams (toe) and LB James Burgess (hamstring) were placed on the Reserve/Injured list Wednesday, Nov. 25.

From TheHuddle

Randall Cobb Nov 25 8:03pm ET

Houston Texans WR Randall Cobb (toe) and DT P.J. Hall (knee, shoulder) were placed on the Reserve/Injured list Wednesday, Nov. 25.

From TheHuddle

Abry Jones Nov 25 8:03pm ET

Jacksonville Jaguars DT Abry Jones (ankle) and LB Shaquille Quarterman (knee) were designated to return from the Reserve/Injured list Wednesday, Nov. 25.

From TheHuddle

Austin Ekeler Nov 25 8:03pm ET

Updating a previous story, Los Angeles Chargers RB Austin Ekeler (hamstring) was designated to return from the Reserve/Injured list Wednesday, Nov. 25.

From TheHuddle

Andrew Brown Nov 25 7:53pm ET

Cincinnati Bengals DT Andrew Brown was signed off the practice squad to the active roster of the Houston Texans Wednesday, Nov. 25. Texans RB Scottie Phillips was also signed off the Houston practice squad to the active roster.

From TheHuddle