Does Scotty Miller need to be started in fantasy football on Thursday? And which Buccaneers wide receivers can you trust for fantasy on Thursday night? When the Tampa Bay Buccaneers face off on Thursday Night Football against the Chicago Bears, it will be all hands on deck (sorry, terrible joke) as they face a plethora of injuries coming into the game.
Mainly impacting the offense, several critical players are questionable for their matchup, including wide receiver Scotty Miller. With Chris Godwin already listed as out for the game and Mike Evans a game-time decision, the Buccaneers need Miller to step and fill a large role in the offense. But is it a smart move to put him in your lineup to kick off Week 5?
Miller, among others, find themselves on the Week 5 injury report
A quick turnaround for a banged-up team is never a good thing, and its the exact situation facing the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in Week 5. Traveling to face the Chicago Bears on Thursday Night Football means the Bucs have to play in their first primetime game of the season with their three top receivers listed on the injury report.
2019 breakout player Chris Godwin will miss his second-straight game and third of the season with a hamstring injury. Mike Evans injured his ankle in Week 4 against the Los Angeles Chargers and is questionable after missing practice all three days this past week.
Also, fantasy darling Scotty Miller is questionable. Miller was a non-participant on Monday and Tuesday but managed to get limited practice during the team’s final Wednesday session.
Ian Rapoport of NFL Media reports that Miller, who is dealing with hip and groin injuries, is expected to play against the Bears. He reports that there is optimism about Evans’ chances of playing through his ankle injury, but a final decision will wait until he goes through pregame warmups.
When on the field, Miller has been very productive for fantasy managers
On a team with both Evans and Godwin, Miller leads in several statistical categories.
Miller is already becoming one of Brady’s favorite targets in Tampa Bay and ranks second on the team with 21 targets. He’s second on the team in receptions with 15 but leads the Buccaneers with 250 receiving yards. The one drawback of Miller’s fantasy value has been the lack of scoring. His only touchdown of the season came in their Week 4 win over the Los Angeles Chargers.
Through four weeks, Brady has targeted Miller on deep passes (20-yards downfield or more) seven times, ninth-most in the NFL. On those passes, Miller’s reception percentage of 35% if the sixth-best in the NFL.
Currently WR32 in PPR fantasy formats, Miller could be in line for a big game on Thursday if he suits up.
If active, is Scotty Miller a must-start for fantasy football?
It all comes down to your roster construction. In a deeper league where you have limited options, especially on waivers, yes, Miller could be a solid play for you this week as he will be the teams (at worst) WR2. He could be the WR1 if Evans is forced to sit. If you have other options, I can see wanting to fade Miller due to the injury risk and the difficult matchup against a stingy Bears defense.
Even though they have allowed 81 points through Week 4, the Bears have yet to allow a receiving touchdown to a wide receiver. They have given up just three passing touchdowns on the year. All three of the passing touchdowns they have allowed have gone to tight ends.
If Miller is active, he is a very risky flex play. You are just as likely for an 18 point game as you are Miller playing on the opening drive, tweaking his preexisting injury, and missing the rest of the game. It is all risk versus reward tonight for fantasy managers relying on Scotty Miller.
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