Who to Start, Who to Sit: Week 6October 10, 2018
By Clifford Buck Jr., Senior Football Analyst
Start: Russell Wilson, SEA
Outlook: After finishing as the top ranked quarterback last season, Wilson has gotten off to a terrible start this season. Currently the 19th ranked quarterback, Wilson only has one game of over 20 fantasy points. This week he should make it two games. Facing the Oakland Raiders and their weak pass rush, Wilson should have plenty of time to make plays in the air and on the ground. Unless you have Patirck Mahomes, Tom Brady, Aaron Rodgers, or Matt Ryan, Wilson should be in your lineup this week.
Sit: Deshaun Watson, HOU
Outlook: Watson is playing the Buffalo Bills this week so you’d think he’s an automatic start right? Not so fast. Last week Watson took several big hits and is questionable for Sunday’s game. While he’s said he’s playing for sure, he’s also going up against a much-improved Bills defense. Since head coach Sean McDermott started calling defensive plays for the Bills, they’ve been one of the toughest defenses in the NFL. In weeks 3-5 the Bills have surrendered an average of 9.7 fantasy points per game to opposing quarterbacks. If you have a safer play, then consider benching Watson this week.
Sleeper: Andy Dalton, CIN
Outlook: Dalton is quietly the 13th ranked fantasy quarterback and has had a relatively consistent season. When facing the 29th ranked defense against fantasy quarterbacks in the Falcons, Dalton posted 24.6 points. This week he plays the Steelers, who are ranked 31st and have gave up an average of 25.4 points per game. Dalton could be a perfect bye week fill in or a streaming option this week.
Start: Tevin Coleman, ATL
Outlook: While Coleman’s fantasy production has decreased every week since week 2, this should be the game to get him back on track. Devonta Freeman is currently dealing with bone contusion in his foot and will likely miss this week’s game, putting Coleman in position to be the lead back for the Falcons. Atlanta is also playing Tampa Bay this week, who currently rank 27 th against opposing fantasy running backs. The Bucs have gave up over 30 fantasy points to running backs in three of their four games, priming Coleman for a big game.
Sit: Adrian Peterson, WSH
Outlook: Peterson looked banged up on Monday night and ultimately finished the came with six touches. It’s been reported that Peterson has a strained shoulder, but he’s still set to play this week. The usage he gets, however, is completely based off of game script. The Redskins are set to play the 3-1 Carolina Panthers this week, who are also the 12th best fantasy defense against running backs. With the Redskins also using running backs Chris Thompson and Kapri Bibbs, Peterson is a risky play this week.
Sleeper: Wendell Smallwood, PHI
Outlook: Jay Ajayi is out for the season with a torn ACL and Darren Sproles has been ruled out for Thursday night’s game, which leaves Smallwood and Corey Clement to lead the Eagles backfield. While Clement has been dealing with injuries all season, Smallwood has shown he can be productive as a lead runner. The past three weeks, Smallwood is averaging 14.9 fantasy points per game. Going up against the Giants 26th ranked defense against fantasy running backs, Smallwood could be primed for a big week.
Start: Sterling Shepard, NYG
Outlook: Since Evan Engram has been out, Shepard has averaged 19.1 fantasy points per game. On a short week, Engram is not likely to return to the lineup, leaving more targets for Shepard. It helps that the Giants will be facing the Eagles, who have the 30th ranked defense against fantasy wide receivers this year. The Eagles have gave up 46.8 fantasy points per game to opposing receivers, including over 50 points the past two weeks. Shepard needs to be in all lineups this week.
Sit: Will Fuller V, HOU
Outlook: Finally a season in which Will Fuller is playing the majority of his team’s games! Too bad the Texans have a rookie wide receiver that has been balling out the past two weeks. Keke Coutee missed the first three weeks due to a hamstring injury, but in the past two games he has out-targeted Fuller 22 to 8. After recording back-to-back 100 yard games, Fuller has record 49 and then 15 yards in the games that Coutee played. Even though Fuller is still listed ahead on Coutee on the depth chart, it’s been clear the past two games that the Texans want to get Coutee the ball. Fuller is not even a WR3 for me this week against the Bills and their 7th ranked defense against fantasy receivers.
Sleeper: Chester Rogers, IND
Outlook: T.Y. Hilton is the clear number one receiver for the Colts, but he missed last week and is questionable for this week. With Hilton banged up, Ryan Grant and Chester Rogers should see more targets, regardless if Hilton suits up or not. While Grant has been the more consistent player this season, only posting one game with less than 10 points, Rogers is the guy on the come up. Grant only has one game with over 60 receiving yards, and it that game he had 64 yards. Meanwhile, Rogers had less than 20 yards each of the first three games of the season, but in the past two weeks he has 8 catches in both games for 85 and 66 yards respectively. Look for another big game from Rogers when the Colts face the Jets and their 28th ranked defense against fantasy receivers.
Start: Jordan Reed, WSH
Outlook: Reed had a rough game last week, only recording one catch for 21 yards. Before the Redskins bye, however, Reed was averaging 11.6 fantasy points per game. With Vernon Davis dealing with a hamstring injury, Reed should see all of the targets at the tight end position this upcoming week. The Redskins are also facing the Panthers, who have allowed 13.8 fantasy points per game to opposing tight ends, good for 23rd in the league. Look for Reed to have a bounce back game this week.
Sit: Trey Burton, CHI
Outlook: Burton has been enjoying a breakout year this season, averaging 12.8 fantasy points per game in his past three games. Coming off of a bye you’d think he’s primed for a big game, but not so fast. The Bears are playing against the Dolphins this week, who have the 8th ranked defense against opposing fantasy tight ends this season. That includes holding Gronk to 44 yards and Jared Cook to 31 yards. Neither player caught a touchdown either. Lower your expectations on Burton this week.
Sleeper: C.J. Uzomah, CIN
Outlook: C.J. who? While most people have probably never heard of C.J. Uzomah, it’s time you start learning the name. With Tyler Eifert out for the rest of the season and Tyler Kroft banged up, Uzomah is the top tight end on an efficient offense in Cincinnati. Uzomah has three games this season of over 6 fantasy points, which isn’t much, but he should be set for a big game this week. The Bengals are playing the Steelers this week, who have allowed an average of 9 catches for 99.8 yards per game to opposing tight ends the past four weeks. The Steelers are currently the 31st ranked defense against opposing fantasy tight ends, allowing 20.1 points per game. Expect a breakout game from Uzomah this week.