Week 5 Start/Sit For Fantasy Football

Week 5 Start/Sit For Fantasy Football
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Week 5 Start/Sit For Fantasy Football


Hopefully, Thursday night was a success for everyone, from a fantasy perspective. Below is a reminder of how this article will be laid out, followed by the rest of my Week 5 start/sit.

Must Start: These are players that you’re starting week-to-week, regardless of the opponent.

Flex Start: These are players who are more opponent dependent or players you might need to start depending on league size. This is also a spot where some of the stars have tougher matchups, but you are still starting them.

Sits: These are players that don’t have a good matchup or don’t have much of a role in their team’s offense.

***Please note that this article was written before the Sunday and Monday night game and with that comes changes to player situations due to injury or other factors. If a player(s) is injured or inactive after this article was published please use common sense and sit them. Please always double-check your lineup before kickoff.***

In order for me to be able to cover every team’s matchup, the explanations will be brief. I do base these recommendations on my fantasy football experience along with the necessary research. This is my first year doing this weekly article and last week, I made approximately 170 decisions (start/sit) and got 111 correct and 62 incorrect for a 64% correct rate. My average so far this season is 66% correct. Please note, I didn’t do week 1 rankings. Let’s dive into the rest of week 5.

Bye Week: Detroit Lions & Miami Dolphins

Jaguars @ Panthers

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Jacksonville Jaguars:

Must Start: Leonard Fournette (RB)

Through the first quarter of the season, the Panthers have allowed 523 rushing yards and they just lost defensive tackle Kawann Short, for the season.

Flex Start: D.J. Chark (WR)

Chark is Minshew go-to target, in the passing game, which makes me a weekly flex option. I’d prefer to sit him if possible, this week.

Sit: Gardner Minshew (QB) Chris Conley (WR) DeDe Westbrook (WR) James O’Shaughnessy (TE)

Minshew is fun to watch, but he’s not someone I’d want to start unless I had to. The rest of these guys are not seeing enough volume week to week to be consistent starters.

Carolina Panthers:

Must Start: Christian McCaffrey (RB)

He should see a lot of work, in both the run and passing game, against the Jags defense.

Flex Start: D.J. Moor e (WR) Curtis Samuel (WR) Greg Olsen (TE)

I’d rather sit Moore if I could as he’s seen only seven targets, the last two weeks. Same goes for Samuel, I’d rather sit him this week. He has seen 14 targets the last two weeks. Olsen is still someone you’re starting, due to how poor the tight end position has been to this point.

Sit: Kyle Allen (QB)

Patriots @ Redskins

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New England Patriots:

Must Start: All Patriots (note that a few key players are on the injury report, be sure to check Sunday morning)

Flex Start: N/A

Sit: N/A

Washington Redskins:

Must Start: N/A

Flex Start: N/A

Sit: All Redskins

Bills @ Titans

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Buffalo Bills:

Must Start: N/A

Flex Start: Frank Gore (RB) Devin Singletary (RB) Cole Beasley (WR) Dawson Knox (TE)

I’d prefer to sit Singletary as he works his way back, from injury. Beasley has seen 36 targets through four weeks and should see more if Barkley is under center. Knox could see a slight increase in targets if Barkley starts.

Sit: Josh Allen (QB) Matt Barkley (QB) John Brown (WR) Zay Jones (WR)

This is assuming Allen is out this week.

Tennessee Titans:

Must Start: N/A

Flex Start: Derrick Henry (RB) Delanie Walker (TE)

I’d much rather sit Walker than play him, but with the position he plays, I understand if you have to play him.

Sit: Marcus Mariota (QB) Corey Davis (WR) A.J. Brown (WR)

Tom Brady just got held in check against this defense, that should tell you all you need to know.

Ravens @ Steelers

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Baltimore Ravens:

Must Start: Lamar Jackson (QB)

He’s a must-start this week. Russell Wilson had a solid game against this defense, so why can’t Jackson?

Flex Start: Mark Ingram (RB) Marquise Brown (WR) Mark Andrews (TE)

The Steelers have allowed 491 rushing yards through the first four weeks of the season. Assuming Andrews plays, he should be a plug and play tight end.

Sit: Willie Snead (WR) Miles Boykin (WR)

Pittsburgh Steelers:

Must Start:

Flex Start: James Conner (RB) Jaylen Samuels (RB) Diontae Johnson (WR) JuJu Smith-Schuster (WR)

Conner/Samuels should see plenty of work with this defense expected to confuse Rudolph. Johnson is someone that I’d prefer to sit, but I can’t deny the connection he and Rudolph have built so far. JuJu is someone you’re probably starting, but I don’t feel great about it.

Sit: Mason Rudolph (QB) James Washington (WR) Donte Moncrief (WR)

I expect him to struggle against the Ravens defense. Washington has yet to develop an NFL connection so far.

Cardinals @ Bengals

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Arizona Cardinals:

Must Start: David Johnson (RB)

He’s seeing work as a runner and a receiver out of the backfield.

Flex Start: Kyler Murray (QB) Larry Fitzgerald (WR) KeeSean Johnson (WR)

The Bengals defense allowed 260 passing yards and 2 touchdowns last week, which should mean good things for Murray. With the Cardinals down some wide receivers, Fitzgerald should continue to be the go-to target for Murray. Johnson should see some additional work, but I wouldn’t start him unless I had to.

Sit: Christian Kirk (WR) Damiere Byrd (WR) Tight Ends

Looks like these two wide receivers will miss week 5.

Cincinnati Bengals:

Must Start: N/A

Flex Start: Andy Dalton(QB) Joe Mixon (RB) Tyler Boyd (WR) Auden Tate (WR) Tyler Eifert (TE)

The Cardinals’ defense isn’t very good through the first quarter of the season. If the Bengals offensive line was better then these players would be higher, but this is still a plus matchup for them.

Sit: John Ross (WR)

He got put on injured reserve this week and will miss the next 8 games.

Falcons @ Texans

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Atlanta Falcons:

Must Start: Julio Jones (WR)

Flex Start: Matt Ryan (QB) Devonta Freeman (RB) Calvin Ridley (WR) Mohamed Sanu (WR) Austin Hooper (TE)

The Texans secondary has struggled so far this season, which should benefit Ryan and his pass-catchers. Sanu is third on the team in targets with 31. He’s only six targets behind Julio. CMC had 179 total yards and a touchdown against the Texans defense last week. Let’s hope Freeman can do the same, this week.

Sit: N/A

Houston Texans:

Must Start: Deshaun Watson (QB) DeAndre Hopkins (WR)

The Falcons secondary hasn’t played well, so far, which hopefully means great things for these two.

Flex Start: Carlos Hyde (RB) Duke Johnson (RB) Will Fuller (WR)

Both of these guys are involved so it will be hard to tell which player is the stronger play. With Stills not at full health, this should open up more targets for Fuller.

Sit: Kenny Stills (WR) Jordan Akins (TE)

Don’t think Stills will be fully recovered from his hamstring injury. Akins isn’t seeing enough targets weekly, despite last week’s performance.

Buccaneers @ Saints

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Tampa Bay Buccaneers:

Must Start: Mike Evans (WR) Chris Godwin (WR)

This is assuming Godwin is healthy enough with his hip injury.

Flex Start: Jameis Winston (QB) Peyton Barber (RB) Ronald Jones (RB) O.J. Howard (TE)

While Winston had a good performance, last week, he’s still turnover prone, making him a risky play. The Saints have allowed 1,180 passing yards through four weeks. The two running backs are involved in the offense and it’s hard to tell which one will have the better game weekly. I’d rather sit him if possible as he has seen 12 targets.

Sit: Breshad Perriman (WR) Cameron Brate (TE)

He’s dealing with a hamstring injury. Brate has only seen 10 targets so far.

New Orleans Saints:

Must Start: Alvin Kamara (RB)

Flex Start: Teddy Bridgewater (QB) Michael Thomas (WR) Jared Cook (TE)

Goff threw for 517 yards last week….enough said regarding Bridgewater. Thomas is a weekly starter, but his overall numbers have taken a dip since Teddy has been under center. If Cook can’t have a productive week here, then I don’t know when or if he will this season.

Sit: Ted Ginn (WR)

I would prefer to sit him, but he has seen 10 targets over the last two weeks, so I wouldn’t blame those who start him as a flex play.

Vikings @ Giants

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Minnesota Vikings:

Must Start: Dalvin Cook (RB)

He’s going to get as much work as he can handle. He comes into this week as RB 3 overall, through four weeks.

Flex Start: Adam Thielen (WR) Stefon Diggs (WR)

Even though these two have struggled so far, the Giants defense isn’t very good. This should allow for a few more attempts to these two.

Sit: Kirk Cousins (QB) Kyle Rudolph (TE)

The Vikings are a run-first team.

New York Giants:

Must Start: Evan Engram (TE)

Flex Start: Wayne Gallman (RB) Golden Tate (WR) Sterling Shepard (WR) Darius Slayton (WR)

I’d rather sit these players due to how good the Vikings defense is, but I understand that some people need to start Gallman and Tate, this week.

Sit: Daniel Jones (QB)

This is a good Vikings defense that should make Jones uncomfortable.

Bears @ Raiders

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Chicago Bears:

Must Start: N/A

Flex Start: Chase Daniel (QB) David Montgomery (RB) Allen Robinson (WR)

The Raiders defense isn’t very good and they just lost middle linebacker Vontaze Burfict for the rest of the season, as of now. This makes an already bad defense even worse. I see lots of targets going Robinson’s way and Montgomery to be heavily involved as well.

Sit: Tarik Cohen (RB) Anthony Miller (WR) Cordarrelle Patterson (WR) Trey Burton (TE)

All of these players aren’t seeing enough volume to relevant weekly. Burton is the only one who you could start if you’re desperate at tight end.

Oakland Raiders:

Must Start: N/A

Flex Start: Tyrell Williams (WR) Darren Waller (TE)

I’d rather sit him, but if he’s cleared to play, I don’t blame those for needing to play him. Waller is someone you’re starting just don’t like him as much against this tough Bears defense.

Sit: Derek Carr (QB)  Josh Jacobs (RB)  J.J. Nelson (WR) Hunter Renfrow (WR)

The Chicago defense is a top 5 unit, four weeks in. That’s not great news for the Raiders offense.

Jets @ Eagles

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New York Jets:

Must Start: N/A

Flex Start: Le’veon Bell (RB)

Sit: All other Jets players

Philadelphia Eagles:

Must Start: All Eagles

Flex Start: N/A

Sit: N/A

Broncos @ Chargers

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Denver Broncos:

Must Start: N/A

Flex Start: Phillip Lindsay (RB) Royce Freeman (RB) Emmanuel Sanders (WR) Courtland Sutton (WR)

Lindsay and Freeman are both involved in the offense, making it hard to know which one is going to have the better performance. Sanders should draw Chargers cornerback Casey Hayward but is still worth a start as a flex play, I’d prefer to sit him. Sutton continues to be productive and is someone who is also a good flex play this week. Sanders has seen 33 targets and Sutton has seen 32 targets through four weeks.

Sit: Joe Flacco (QB) DaeSean Hamilton (WR) Noah Fant (TE)

The Chargers defense should give these players trouble, in week 5. Hamilton has only seen 15 targets so far this season.

Los Angeles Chargers:

Must Start: N/A

Flex Start: Melvin Gordon (RB) Austin Ekeler (RB) Mike Williams (WR) Keenan Allen (WR)

I think both Gordon and Ekeler will be involved in the offense. I’ll be watching to see just how involved each of them are. Williams is a flex play, if needed, due to the team’s lack of depth at receiver. I see Broncos cornerback Chris Harris on Allen, but you’re starting him regardless.

Sit: Phillip Rivers (QB) Travis Benjamin (WR) Tight Ends

Packers @ Cowboys

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Green Bay Packers:

Must Start: N/A

Flex Start: Aaron Rodgers (QB) Aaron Jones (RB) Marquez Valdes-Scantling (WR) Geronimo Allison (WR) Jimmy Graham (TE)

With Adams out, these players should be leaned on more this week. Allison is someone I’d rather sit, but I understand his owners are going to want to start him.

Sit: Davante Adams (WR) Jamaal Williams (RB)

They both have been ruled out for this week.

Dallas Cowboys:

Must Start: Ezekiel Elliott (RB)

Elliott did have a rough performance last week, but you’re still starting him this week. The Cowboys should feed Elliott as they Packers struggle against the run.

Flex Start: Dak Prescott (QB) Amari Cooper (WR) Michael Gallup (WR) Jason Witten (TE)

The Packers are a better defense against the pass, which limits all of these players upside this week. I’d prefer to only start Dak and Cooper if possible.

Sit: Randall Cobb (WR)

With Gallup expected to play, that hurts Cobb’s upside against his former team.

Colts @ Chiefs

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Indianapolis Colts:

Must Start: N/A

Flex Start: Jacoby Brissett (QB) Marlon Mack (RB) Jordan Wilkins (RB) Nyheim Hines (RB) Jack Doyle (TE) Eric Ebron (TE)

I’m expecting the Colts to be behind so that means Brissett will need to throw more, which makes him an appealing streamer this week. Mack is listed as questionable and due to the game being on Sunday night, it will be smart to have Wilkins and or Hines on your roster, for Mack owners. Doyle (17 targets) and Ebron (16 targets) should be more involved in the passing game with the lack of depth and experience at wide receiver.

Sit: T.Y. Hilton (WR) All other wide receivers

He’s looking like a true game-time decision, I’d have other options and avoid him if possible.

Kansas City Chiefs:

Must Start: Patrick Mahomes (QB) Travis Kelce (TE)

Kelce should be targeted often with how injured the wide receivers are.

Flex Start: LeSean McCoy (RB) Damien Williams (RB) Demarcus Robinson (WR) Mecole Hardman (WR)

I’m assuming that both McCoy and Williams will play. The Colts are 9th in the league in rushing yards allowed, with 530. With how depleted the wide receiver are these two should see plenty of targets.

Sit: Darrel Williams (RB) Tyreek Hill (WR) Sammy Watkins (WR)

He’s a sit if McCoy and Damien Williams play, if not he’s a flex play. Hill is ruled out for this week and his hoping to be back for week 6. Watkins was downgraded to a limited participant on Friday. I’m expecting Watkins to be out on Sunday night.

Browns @ 49ers (Monday Night)

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Cleveland Browns:

Must Start: Nick Chubb (RB)

He’s on a roll and I’d keep riding him this week.

Flex Start: Odell Beckham (WR) Jarvis Landry (WR)

Landry had a great performance last week, but he is going up against a tough Niners defense and is projected to face cornerback K’Waun Williams. Williams has been a solid shutdown player, so far this season. If you can sit Landry, I would.

Sit: Baker Mayfield (QB) Ricky Seals-Jones (TE)

Mayfield will continue to be a sit until he can become more consistent week to week. Seals-Jones was productive last week but only saw three targets. He needs more targets to be considered as a weekly streaming option.

San Francisco 49ers:

Must Start: George Kittle (TE)

Flex Start: Jimmy Garoppolo (QB) Tevin Coleman (RB) Dante Pettis (WR) Marquise Goodwin (WR) Deebo Samuel (WR)

Pettis is too talented to not be more involved in this offense. Hopefully, this team worked on getting all of their wide receivers involved during their bye week. The Browns defense has allowed 2,152 passing yards through three games and their secondary will be short-handed.

Sit: Matt Breida (RB) Raheem Mostert (RB)

Tevin Coleman is expected to return and the Browns have allowed 3.9 yards per rush to opposing running backs. I’d prefer to sit all running backs till we get more clarity as to how this will go, with Coleman expected back.

Good luck in week 5 and remember don’t overthink your lineup decisions this week.


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