By Pat Pitts
Watching football every Sunday is a joy, but it has been painful to set fantasy lineups with the number of injuries and the lack of production from star players.
It’s a new week so it’s time to reconfigure your fantasy lineups. Here are the players that I am excited for and nervous about heading into Sunday.
Ryan Tannehill @ JAX
If anyone needs a bounce back week, it’s the Titans with Tannehill leading the charge. He nearly threw for 300 yards against the Jets and did not turn the ball over making him a safe start with a massive ceiling.
Sam Darnold vs PHI
Darnold averages 300 yards and a touchdown this season, ranking as QB5. He also leads the league in rushing touchdowns (5). Darnold is a QB that managers can stream heading into the first week of byes.
Kirk Cousins vs DET
The Detroit Lions defense ranks 12th in yards allowed and seven passing touchdowns. Cousins has thrown for multiple touchdowns in three out of four games this season. He has a great matchup vs Minnesota this week, moving him into a QB1 for Week 5.
Tony Pollard vs NYG
Ezekiel Elliot has been ruled questionable against the Giants, but even with Zeke healthy, Pollard has over double digit carries in the last three games. He has been more productive over the past few games making him a solid start as a FLEX or low end RB2.
J.D. McKissic vs NO
No, do not start McKissic as a primary back. However, he has a lot of upside as a FLEX.
McKissic has seen an increase in carries each game this season. Rivera seems to trust him in the red zone more than Gibson. He has been involved in the passing game making him a great DFS play as well.
Damien Harris @ HOU
Damien Harris has been non-existent after his 100 yard performance in Week 1. He faces the Texans this week, who have allowed the 6th most yards to fantasy running backs in 2021. Harris ranks as a low end RB2 start in Week 5.
Terry McLaurin vs NO
Terry McLaurin remains a lethal target. He finished with over double digit fantasy points despite being lined up against some of the league's best cornerbacks. This is a declaration to lock McLaurin into your lineup for the rest of the season.
Tim Patrick @ PIT
Tim Patrick remains a top target on the Broncos, regardless of who throws him the ball. He faces the Steelers this week, who are coming off an embarrassing loss at Lambeau. Patrick averages over 10 yards per catch which makes him a safe WR2 for the week.
Antonio Brown vs MIA
Tom Brady loves throwing to two people, Gronk and Antonio Brown. Brown caught seven passes last Sunday for a measly 63 yards. He almost scored the game winner, but the rain helped the ball pass through his hands. Players who see more than 10 targets per game deserve a spot in a starting lineup and this includes Brown.
TJ Hockenson @ MIN
The Lions need to score if they want to win games. Hockenson is someone who can score. He leads the team in nearly every receiving stat, making him a must start at TE this week.
Dalton Schultz vs NYG
Schultz has caught three touchdowns in the past two games. He plays a struggling Giants defense on Sunday, so start Schultz.
Dawson Knox @ KC
Knox ranks as TE6 according to ESPN. He has caught a touchdown in the past three games, scoring twice last week. Josh Allen loves targeting him in the red zone, why not have your team benefit from it?
Daniel Jones @ DAL
Jones threw for 402 yards last week. He hit his fantasy peak for the year. Move onto the next streamable option.
Trevor Lawrence vs TEN
The Jaguars are an absolute MESS and there's no need to subject yourself to this typical Thursday Night Football matchup with all of the drama and distraction with Urban Meyer and how it could affect this team.
Baker Mayfield @ LAC
The Chargers are the best team in football and their defense is even better. Mayfield will be spending his day scrambling from defenders, or worse. being buried by them. Matt Ryan is available in 69% of leagues and he plays the Jets this week.
D’Andre Swift @ MIN
The Lions have a lot of problems, on both sides of the ball. They have to deal with Everson Griffen and Danielle Hunter this week. You do not have to, which is why you bench Swift.
Myles Gaskin @ TB
The Buccaneers have one of the most terrifying defensive lines in the league, led by their anchor Vita Vea. Gaskin will struggle to rush against them, especially since they lead the league in yards allowed against fantasy RBs (42).
Cordarrelle Patterson @ NYJ
It’s time for this return man to come back to reality. Patterson will see a decrease in production especially since the Jets struggle defending the pass more than the run. Find another player for your FLEX spot.
Mike Williams vs CLE
Williams played his worst game of the season against the Raiders. He will have a similar fate as he lines up against the Browns’ new and improved secondary. Williams is simply cooling off before heating up just in time for a second half of the season run.
Robert Woods @ SEA (THURSDAY)
Robert Woods has been an afterthought in the Rams offense since Matthew Stafford has come to town. Until Woods starts showing actual signs of consistency, he's a liability in your fantasy lineup.
Brandin Cooks vs NE
The Patriots are pissed off after nearly upsetting the Super Bowl champs. J.C Jackson made Mike Evans invisible last week and he’ll do the same to Cooks on Sunday.
Mark Andrews vs IND
Andrews faces the Colts this week, making him the Maniac Sit of the Week. Darius Leonard continued his reign of terror last week holding Mike Gesicki to 57 yards. Jackson may need to move the ball with his feet more than his arm this week, forcing Andrews managers to lower expectations for their typical TE1.
Jared Cook vs CLE
The Browns have shut down opposing TEs this season ranking ninth in yards allowed to their opponents at that position. There are guys that rank higher who are lonely on waivers.
Robert Tonyan vs CIN
The Broncos have yet to allow a touchdown to TEs this year. Rodgers rekindled his connection with Randall Cobb last week leaving Tonyan on the sidelines.