We’ve combed the far reaches of the Internet and culled only the choicest fantasy tips and advice. Below you’ll find easily digestible nuggets addressing some of the critical situations fantasy owners will face from week to week.
Bye weeks: Bills, Bears, Colts and Raiders.
Ito Smith, RB, Falcons: A week after scoring his first touchdown of the season, Smith turned in his best game of the year in Week 5. Smith finished with 64 yards from scrimmage and hauled in six receptions, so he stands to produce a little more in PPR leagues. Atlanta is at Arizona this Sunday. While the Cardinals appear to be a little stingy vs. opposing running backs, that might just be a product of their secondary being very generous. A pass-catching running back such as Smith has a chance to produce. He’s available in 90 percent of ESPN leagues, and long-term he offers some upside should Devonta Freeman get banged up.
Darius Slayton, WR, Giants: With a slew of injuries, Slayton has seen more playing time in recent weeks. He’s received five targets in two of the past three weeks, and is coming off a four-catch, 62-yard outing vs. a tough Minnesota secondary. New York will be without Sterling Shepard when it faces New England on Thursday night. It’s hardly an ideal matchup for Slayton, but owners in desperate need of a wide receiver may need an alternative. The hope if you are considering Slayton is that he’ll accumulate enough targets to provide a solid fantasy result. Slayton is owned in less than 1 percent of ESPN leagues. Furthermore, there are matchups in the weeks ahead that offer more upside for Slayton.
Michael Gallup, WR, Cowboys: Gallup missed two weeks but picked up where he left off, hauling in seven receptions (14 targets) for 113 yards and a touchdown. He may have been drafted as a No. 3 or No. 4 receiver, but Gallup is entering must-play territory given what we’ve seen of him. And let’s not forget that his Week 5 production came against a tough Green Bay defense. Dallas will look to get back in the win column this weekend. For owners in need of an WR2/flex play, you could do a lot worse than Gallup.
Terry McLaurin, WR, Redskins: That’s right, when Miami is on the schedule, you just might find fantasy advice that suggests not one but two players from the opposing team. In Week 6, McLaurin fits the bill so well that a computer model is advising to get him in the lineup. McLaurin has had at least 50 yards in each game and stands to do it again this weekend.
Dede Westbrook, WR, Jaguars: In standard scoring leagues, Westbrook isn’t making a lot of noise. In PPR leagues, however, Westbrook is doing just enough to warrant weekly consideration. Jacksonville’s offense does have its issues at times, but Westbrook continues to make his presence known. While the Week 6 matchup against New Orleans isn’t a great one, Westbrook has been performed well enough against other tough defenses that he may be useful to owners in need of an WR2/flex play.
Davante Adams, WR, Packers: A toe injury continues to plague Adams, and he’s not looking good to suit up in Week 6 against division rival Detroit. Geronimo Allison and Marquez Valdes-Scantling will look to pick up the slack for Green Bay.
Sam Darnold, QB, Jets: Darnold received clearance to play in Week 6 as New York faces Dallas. He’s a tough recommendation because he’s been out with a physically draining illness. It might be best to see him play a week before using him in lineups. WRs Robby Anderson and Jamison Crowder do get a boost with the Jets having their starting QB back.
David Johnson, RB, Cardinals: Johnson suffered some tightness in his back during Week 5 and could be iffy for Week 6. That would be disastrous for Johnson owners because Arizona hosts Atlanta. The Falcons have been struggling mightily on defense and anyone who has a piece of the Cardinals’ offense would be wise to insert them into the lineup. Monitor his status through the week and check back here for injury updates on Friday. Update: On the team’s final injury report Friday, Johnson is listed as questionable. It feels like Johnson is much more likely not to play than his teammate below, but new reporting suggests Johnson is going to give it a go Sunday.
Christian Kirk, WR, Cardinals: Kirk missed Week 5 after hurting his ankle in Week 4. Arizona hopes to have him available in Week 6 against Atlanta. Fantasy owners are hoping that’s the case because the Falcons’ secondary has been very generous and represents an appealing matchup. Update: Kirk remains a game-time decision but has practiced this week, so things are looking optimistic. It’s a great matchup, so start Kirk in if he’s cleared.