WR Start ‘Em Sit ‘Em Week 5: Should Amari Cooper and Emmanuel Sanders be in fantasy lineups?

With the wide receiver picture in a strange place through 4 weeks, which WRs are the top start 'em and sit 'em options for Week 5?

Now that we are four weeks into the season, fantasy football managers are starting to understand which players need to be in lineups and which ones to leave on the bench. However, matchups remain essential to lineup decisions. Let’s take a look at our Week 5 WR start ’em and sit ’em plays.

Week 5 Start ‘Em or Sit ‘Em: Wide Receivers

Which wide receivers are starts heading into Week 5?

Start ‘Em | Jakobi Meyers, New England Patriots (@ HOU)

Through 33 career games, Jakobi Meyers has amassed 112 receptions and 1,334 receiving yards. Miraculously, he has not scored a single touchdown.

The Texans allow the ninth-most fantasy points per game to opposing teams and are one of the weaker defenses. The Patriots will try and run the ball, but they can’t run it every play. And Meyers has seen 26 targets over the last two games. He’s the clear WR1 in New England, and I think this is the week he finally finds the end zone.

Start ‘Em | Emmanuel Sanders, Buffalo Bills (@ KC)

This Sunday night’s Bills vs. Chiefs showdown possesses the highest over/under of the weekend at 56.5 points. This is going to be a festival of points, and Josh Allen cannot throw every pass to Stefon Diggs.

Enter Emmanuel Sanders. The clear WR2 in Buffalo has seen exactly 6 targets in three straight games. He’s caught 5 passes in two straight with yardage totals of 74 and 94.

Last week, Sanders was productive, despite the Bills shutting out the Texans 40-0, resulting in Allen needing to attempt just 29 passes. I would be stunned if Allen didn’t eclipse 40 pass attempts against a Chiefs defense surrendering the second-most fantasy points per game to quarterbacks.

If Allen is scoring points, then so are his pass catchers (namely Diggs and Sanders). The latter continues to be barely ranked as a weekly WR3 despite being the WR25 on the season, scoring just 2 fantasy points fewer than DeAndre Hopkins. Sanders should probably be in lineups every week but definitely needs to be in your lineup this week.

Week 5 Start ‘Em or Sit ‘Em: Wide Receivers

These wide receivers should be left on your bench in Week 5.

Sit ‘Em | Amari Cooper, Dallas Cowboys (vs. NYG)

Following a 17-target opening game, Amari Cooper has been an afterthought in the Cowboys’ offense. Since Week 1, he’s seen a total of 12 targets and caught exactly 3 passes in three straight games. That is not what you want from your fantasy WR2.

The problems with Cooper this week are lengthy. First, there’s this whole volume problem where he’s not getting targeted. It’s not just Cooper. CeeDee Lamb has struggled as well because the Cowboys are playing so well defensively that Dak Prescott doesn’t have to attempt 40 passes a game as he did in 2020.

Second, this matchup isn’t the best. Cooper will likely draw James Bradberry, which means Lamb and Dalton Schultz will be the beneficiaries of softer coverage.

Third, Cooper picked up a hamstring injury last week. He was able to play through it but missed practice on Wednesday, which indicates it’s still ailing him. Although Cooper is likely going to play through his injury, he’s not going to be 100%. With the Cowboys running the ball well and playing defense, you can sit Cooper for superior options this week.

Sit ‘Em | Kenny Golladay, New York Giants (@ DAL)

Kenny Golladay has played much better the past two weeks. In Week 3, he caught 4 passes for 64 yards. In Week 4, he caught 6 for 116. So why sit him now? The answer is as simple as it gets: Trevon Diggs.

The Cowboys’ sophomore cornerback is quickly emerging into one of the league’s best defenders. Diggs already has 5 interceptions on the season. Fantasy managers may look at DJ Moore’s monster Week 4 and think that Diggs isn’t that tough of a matchup. However, the majority of Moore’s production came either away from Diggs or during garbage time.

The Giants are not going to try and challenge Diggs, who will likely shadow Golladay. Instead, they will look to utilize Kadarius Toney and Saquon Barkley in space, picking on the weaker defenders of this defense. Better days are ahead for Golladay, just not this week.

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