One more week in the books, and already fantasy football managers have to deal with bye week woes. Pile those on top of the onslaught of injuries that 2020 has given us so far, and options for this column are getting weirder and weirder. So let’s review our Fantasy Football Consistency Score (CS) and Defensive Points Allowed Consistency Score (DPACS) after what we have learned and highlight the top Week 5 matchups and players to start or sit for your fantasy lineups.
If you would like more detailed information on how the CS and DPACS works, please refer to the Introduction to the Fantasy Football Consistency Score. But the basic premise is, the higher the CS, the more consistent a player is scoring high-level fantasy points. In the case of DPACS, the consistency in which that team allows high-level fantasy points to the position.
PSA: I don’t feel the need to tell you, the savvy fantasy G.M., to start a player like Patrick Mahomes every week. I abide by the golden rule: start your studs. However, if there is glaring evidence to sit a bonafide starter, we will discuss that as needed.
Quarterbacks to start/sit in fantasy football Week 5
Start Teddy Bridgewater
I love a “feel good” story. And there isn’t a bigger feel-good comeback story in the NFL than Teddy Bridgewater shedding arm tackles and scrambling for 18 yards and a touchdown this past Sunday. Now the 2014 first-round pick gets the favorable matchup against the buttercup Atlanta Falcons in Week 5.
Bridgewater’s 6.08 screams mediocrity, and his QB24 ranking in FPD isn’t terribly juicy either. But he is in the top half of the league in xFP, and we finally saw a strong passing performance from Bridgewater in Week 4. Bridgewater looks like a quarterback that is shaking off the rust, but he is improving each game, it seems.
But that’s not the real headline here. The matchup against the Atlanta Falcons secondary is why fantasy managers everywhere should feel confident firing up Bridgewater in Week 5. The Falcons have lost six members of their secondary.
This year, they are allowing an average of 354 passing yards and have literally given up four passing touchdowns in every single game this season. That includes the Trubisky/Foles Week 3 meltdown against Chicago. With the second-highest DPACS against QBs, 25.63, and a whopping 32.48 average points allowed, Bridgewater might have his best fantasy football performance of the year in Week 5.
Sit Tom Brady
Welcome to 2020. I am officially suggesting that fantasy football managers sit Tom Brady in Week 5. The end is near…
But seriously, Brady hasn’t been a statistical stud this season. He had his best statistical game of the season in Week 4 against the Los Angeles Chargers, but before that game, he was averaging 250 yards passing, two touchdowns, one interception a game, and his 7.04 CS is 20th among all signal-callers. All of his pass-catchers are banged up, and it is likely he has to lean even more heavily on a rough-looking post-retirement Gronk. It’s not the prettiest situation Brady has been in.
On top of his own team’s woes, they play the Chicago Bears in Week 5, who are 26th in DPACS and 31st in average points allowed to quarterbacks. Not a matchup to target for fantasy. On top of the defense being stout against the position, the offense is struggling mightily. They are tied with the Washington Football team for the 12th fewest offensive touchdowns on the season. So this isn’t apt to blow up into a thirty-something-thirty-something shootout the way the Chargers game did. Ignore the name fame, and sit Brady.
Which running backs should you start/sit in Week 5?
Start James Robinson
This kid is fun. More than that, he is good too. His 5.96 CS is 11th among all running backs, he is averaging 17.4 fantasy points per game in 0.5-PPR formats, 71 rushing yards, 4 targets, and 1.5 touchdowns per game. James Robinson came out of nowhere and is making himself a household name.
In Week 5, the Jacksonville Jaguars lineup opposite the 0-4 Houston Texans that just fired their head coach/GM/Czar and currently have the second-highest DPACS, 21.7, and are averaging right around 30 points per game to the position, regardless of format. Is that not enough for you? You need more, you say? How about the fact that the Texans have allowed more rushing yards than any other team in the NFL in 2020 and are tied for fourth in rushing touchdowns allowed (6)? Yeah, James Robinson is an “all systems go” start this week.
Sit the Los Angeles Rams running backs.
The Los Angeles Rams are traveling to the nation’s capital to face off against the Washington Football Team, who have the third-lowest DPACS, 6.61, and average points allowed to the position.
Along with a bad defensive matchup, it’s a complete coin flip as to which running back is even “the guy” on this team. On the season, Malcolm Brown has 45 carries to Darrell Henderson’s 43. Brown also eeks ahead in targets, 12 to 7, and both backs have two touchdowns each. But Henderson leads the two in rushing and receiving yards. The situation is simply too murky going into a bad matchup on the road. Steer away from either back in Week 5.
What wide receivers should you start/sit in fantasy football for Week 5?
Start Robby Anderson
If I am going to tout Teddy Bridgewater at quarterback, then it stands to reason that the Carolina Panthers number one receiver will have a good day too. And sadly, no, I don’t mean D.J. Moore. I whiffed hard on that one this offseason.
But Robby Anderson has been all that we’ve hoped for and then some. It just took getting away from a particular head coach up in the “Big Apple” for him to show a consistent level of production. Anderson is currently sporting a Consistency Score of 5.43, 12th highest among receivers, a +22% Fantasy Point Differential, and is averaging 14.43 fantasy points per game. Going up against the C-Team for the Falcons defense will be a walk in the park for Anderson.
Sit Hunter Renfrow
Despite all the injuries essentially making Hunter Renfrow the number one target for Derek Carr, this is not the week to plug him into your starting lineups. The Las Vegas Raiders are traveling to the heartland to take on the Kansas City Chiefs in their building. The Cheifs are shutting down receivers this season and going to make it a very bad afternoon for Renfrow.
The Chiefs 8.21 is the second-lowest DPACS vs. receivers, and they are allowing the fewest average points to the position. In the real NFL world, it is just as bad. They have allowed the fourth-fewest receptions and receiving yards and the third-fewest receiving touchdowns on the season. Even with all of the injuries plaguing fantasy seasons this week, Renfrow should be avoided in this matchup.
Taking a look at tight ends in Week 5
Start Hunter Henry
Let’s just keep going back to the well that keeps on giving. Tight ends versus the New Orleans Saints. Last week it was T.J. Hockenson finding the endzone. This week Hunter Henry is up next to take on one of the most giving defenses when it comes to the position. The Saints are giving up 24.2 PPR points per game to tight ends, second-highest, and has an 8.4 DPACS to the position. Also, the second-highest.
The kicker, Hunter Henry, is good again! He’s healthy, which, let’s face it, was the only real thing holding him back. In 2020 Henry has the fifth-highest CS, eighth highest in both xFP and targets, and is 13th among tight ends on the season in fantasy points for PPR formats. Plenty of opportunities, consistently performing, and a “My Pillow” soft matchup. Yes, please!
Sit Dalton Schultz
When I see that Dalton Schultz is the eighth-highest scoring tight end at this point on the season, I can’t help but think of what Blake Jarwin could have been. But we have to play with the cards dealt, and we have Dalton Schultz instead, and this week he plays the New York Giants.
The Giants have been surprisingly good against tight ends this season, ranking 24th in average points allowed and 26th in DPACS. Meanwhile, they are a top-10 matchup against receivers. This profiles to be a game where Dak Prescott has no problem hitting his first read when they need to throw, and leaning on Ezekiel Elliott for the vast majority of the time. With a high likelihood of a defensive score to boot, I just don’t see how the Cowboys are going to need anything other than run blocking out of Schultz this week.
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