At this point in the Fantasy season, we have a decent idea of what to expect from most of the players out there. We are getting close to the midpoint of the season in every league, meaning it is going to get harder and harder to find value on the waiver wire. This week, in addition to guys who are sleepers for this weekend’s games, there will be one guy at each position who is worth taking a flier on for his end of season potential.
First, let’s go over our sleeper picks from last week and see how they faired:
Philip Rivers – 258 yards, 3 TD, 20 fantasy points
Jerick Mckinnon – a big 29 points in what was maybe the best game of his career
Andre Ellington – 15 points
Alex Collins – 12 carries for 55 yards, 5 points
Cole Beasley – 2 TD, 18 points
Will Fuller – 2 more TD (that’s 4 in his first 2 games back), 19 points
Austin Seferian Jenkins – 14 points
Zack Miller – 12 points
Tyrod Taylor – 8 points
Jared Goff – 8 points
Sterling Shepard – Only 1 point before being injured
Evan Engram – 0 catches and 0 points in a weird showing
We were 8 out of 12 on our selections last week, with some really big hits (Rivers, Mckinnon, Beasley, Fuller) and two really bad misses on New York Giant players (Shepard and Engram).
Overall, that puts us at 35 out of 60 for the season, which isn’t too shabby when you’re dealing with guys who are owned in less than 70% of leagues. Let’s see if we can keep the good fortunes going in Week 6! For this week, we will list two guys at each position who have potential for this weekend’s games, and then one guy who might have value by the end of the season.
Week 6 Fantasy Sleepers
Carson Palmer, Arizona
Palmer attempted 44 passes against the Eagles last week, completing 28 of them for 291 yards and a touchdown. This week, he goes against Tampa Bay and their 30th ranked scoring defense against opposing quarterbacks. Palmer may not light up the scoreboard with a bunch of touchdowns, but there should be plenty of passing yardage to be had in this one.
Trevor Siemian, Denver
Coming off a bye week and going against the winless New York Giants, Siemian should be ready to go in this one. The Broncos will be at home, and although the Giants seem to have a good defense, they are 22nd in scoring defense against opposing quarterbacks.
TAKE A FLIER
Sam Bradford, Minnesota
He came back a bit too early and didn’t look right last week against Chicago, and will miss this week as well. However, he looked great in Week 1 against the Saints and has one of the best receiving groups in the league. Once he gets healthy, he could put up top 10 numbers with a high floor. If you have the space on your bench, he is worth taking a flier on for the stretch run.
Andre Ellington, Arizona
Even though Adrian Peterson is going to be the new early down back until David Johnson returns, Ellington still has tons of value. He is leading all running backs in targets (39), and plays on a team that likes to throw the ball. He has scored 12, 18 and 15 points respectively in the last three weeks, and should see similar production against the Buccaneers.
Samaje Perine, Washington
With Rob Kelly still banged up, it looks as though Perine will get the early down duties this week. The 49ers are giving up the fifth most points to opposing running backs so far, and the Redskins should be pretty run heavy in this one.
TAKE A FLIER
Matt Breida, San Francisco
He is still the backup to Carlos Hyde, but surprisingly had more carries, yards, targets and total offensive snaps against the Colts. Hyde is a free agent at the end of the year, meaning the 49ers may want to go with a cheaper option going forward. Head coach Kyle Shanahan has already said they will go with a hot hand approach, meaning the majority of work is somewhat up for grabs. It wouldn’t be surprising to see Breida take over the starting gig by season’s end.
Kendall Wright, Chicago
He led the team in receptions and receiving yards last week in rookie quarterback Mitchell Trubisky’s first start. With the exception of an outlier performance against the Steelers, Wright is averaging 4.5 receptions and 50 yards a game. That is a very respectable point floor of at least 9 points each week. Wright probably isn’t going to win you your matchup, but he shouldn’t lose it for you either.
Taylor Gabriel, Atlanta
With Mohamed Sanu out for this week’s matchup against the Dolphins, that makes Gabriel basically the #2 receiver on the Falcon’s depth chart. He has game breaking athleticism and should see a lot of single coverage with Julio Jones on the field. Gabriel is a little bit of a boom or bust type of player, but the odds are more in his favor this week than they will be all season long.
TAKE A FLIER
Sterling Shepard, New York Giants
Yes, he is currently injured, but it isn’t a season ending injury. However, that isn’t the case for the rest of the Giants receivers, as they seemingly lost Odell Beckham Jr., Brandon Marshall and Dwayne Harris for the rest of the year. When Shepard does return, he will be by far the most talented healthy receiver on the Giants roster. Assuming Eli Manning is still out there under center, Shepard has top 20 (and maybe even top 10) potential when he returns to the lineup.
Austin Seferian-Jenkins, New York Jets
After missing the first two weeks with a suspension, Seferian-Jenkins has been the most consistent receiver on the Jets offense the last three weeks. He has posted fantasy point totals of 8, 8 and 14 over that span. This weekend’s game against the Patriots should provide plenty of opportunity to build on that. New England is currently giving up the fourth most points to opposing tight ends, and the Jets should be throwing the ball a lot in this one.
Zach Miller, Chicago
Miller led the Bears in total targets (7) last week in Mitchell Trubisky’s first career start. Serving as a potential security blanket for a running team with a young quarterback, Miller should have solid value this week against the Ravens.
TAKE A FLIER
David Njoku, Cleveland
As a high draft pick, it is only a matter of time before Njoku becomes a big part of the Browns offense. So far this season, in his first five career games, he has 12 receptions for 118 yards and three touchdowns. He seems to have a nose for the endzone (a touchdown on 25% of his receptions) and Cleveland is looking for him down there. He is too talented and the Browns are too desperate for talent for his usage not to increase by season’s end.
Need more tips for your fantasy team? You can find Blake for advice on Twitter @blakegibbs.