Start 'Em, Sit 'Em: Best fantasy football plays for Week 5
Start 'Em, Sit' Em: Best Fantasy Football Games for Week 5 originally broadcast on NBC Sports Washington
The NFL has a few issues trying to hold a full season amid the coronavirus pandemic, but the show continues into week 5 with most games expected to play on time.
That means fantasy matchups are back to full strength (without the packers and lions bye week). Whether you're 4-0 or 0-4, there is still an opportunity to run a run and compete for a place in the playoffs.
Here are the players you should have on your radar this week.
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Start them up
Justin Herbert, LAC (at NO)
Teddy Bridgewater, CAR (at ATL)
Jared Goff, LAR (at WSH)
Justin Herbert was officially named the Chargers' starting quarterback by head coach Anthony Lynn on Thursday. He's prepared for a Monday night competition against a Saints team that misses both top cornerbacks ... Teddy Bridgewater lit the Cardinals in week 4 with a total of three touchdowns. He'll try to maintain momentum against the Falcons, who are the only team opposing quarterbacks are allowed to average more than 30 fantasy points per game ... The Washington defenses are a scary group on paper, and they've got it against the pass with the fourth longest yards claimed per game this season. The only thing is they are still allowing a lot of points and the Rams certainly don't want to run too much against those front seven.
Matt Ryan, ATL (v CAR)
Nick Foles, CHI (against TB)
Derek Carr, LV (at KC)
Matt Ryan is a contestant who takes to the bench before the Falcons matchup with Carolina. Only the Bears and Colts have allowed fewer fantasy points for quarterbacks than the Panthers ... Nick Foles looked like a franchise quarterback after replacing battling Mitchell Trubisky for the Falcons in Week 3. The story was very different last week when the Colts had time to prepare for him. Better to leave him on the bench for now ... Every Kansas City game screams a "shootout" but the Chiefs' secondary school quietly made it. There are better options than Carr, who has to do without one or two of his recipients due to an injury.
Start them up
Antonio Gibson, WSH (against LAR)
Devin Singletary, BUF (at TEN)
Raheem Mostert, SF (against MIA)
Antonio Gibson was the big story in Washington until Dwayne Haskins was put on a bench. Look for offensive coordinator Scott Turner, who relies heavily on the running game while Kyle Allen acclimates. Devin Singletary played two games without Zack Moss in the backfield and qualified for almost 200 yards between weeks 3 and 4. Even with Moss back, Singletary should still lead the way for Buffalo's running game ... Raheem Mostert has not yet been cleared for return but should be reinstated on the line-up immediately if he's healthy. The 49ers saw Jerick McKinnon and Jeff Wilson Jr. each perform commendably in Mostert's absence, but he should resume the lead when he gets back.
Miles Sanders, PHI (at PIT)
Melvin Gordon III, DEN (at NE)
Mark Ingram II, BAL (versus CIN)
The 49ers kept Miles Sanders at just 46 rushing yards last week and it doesn't get any easier on Sunday when the Eagles battle the rested Steelers. If the Eagles fall behind, as they have done so many times this season, they'll have to abandon the running game again and put the ball in Carson Wentz's hands ... The return of Phillip Lindsay will take a few touches from Melvin Gordon, but Der real reason he's on the sit'em list is to defend the patriots. They've only allowed one quick touchdown so far this year, and Gordon's worth largely depends on him getting to the end zone as he's not yards. In terms of touchdown-dependent players, Ingram has officially dropped into this category after playing four games in a row, games with 10 or fewer transfers. He once ran more than 35 meters and was largely ignored in the passing game.
Start them up
Justin Jefferson, MIN (at SEA)
Tyler Boyd, CIN (at BAL)
Golden Tate, NYG (at DAL)
It's time to get excited about Justin Jefferson. The rookie receiver broke out at 175 yards from seven catches in Week 3 and followed on Sunday with four grabs for 103 yards. He couldn't have asked for a better matchup against the Seahawks secondary school ... Tyler Boyd is an often overlooked name in a crime that included Joe Burrow, Joe Mixon and A.J. Green, but he's averaged eight catches per game for the past three weeks and Zac Taylor has shown no concern about letting Burrow ruin attempts to pass. The Giants offensive is usually to be avoided, but the Cowboys defenses showed last week that it doesn't fight much. Golden Tate was outbid by Darius Slayton and Evan Engram that year, but he was far more reliable at pulling the ball when targeted.
D.J. Chark Jr., JAX (at HOU)
Michael Gallup, DAL (v NYG)
Henry Ruggs III, LV (at KC)
It might be difficult to find D.J. Chark after heading off for 95 yards and two touchdowns, but faces a Texan high school with Bradley Roby shadowing the # 1 receivers. Houston was terribly opposed to the run, which is likely to be a bigger day for James Robinson than Chark ... The production decline has been hard and fast for Michael Gallup, who has transferred much of his goals to rookie CeeDee Lamb. Even with a tempting matchup against the Giants, Gallup is better on the bench for now ... Henry Ruggs is back, but that doesn't mean he's ready to be a fantasy starter. Ruggs, the first receiver taken off the board in this year's draft, has only one game this season, recording over 50 reception yards. Wait and see first what he does against Kansas City.
Start them up
Tyler Higbee, LAR (at WSH)
Mo Alie-Cox, IND (at CLE)
Tyler Higbee flopped in week 4, disappointing many fantasy owners who picked him up with three touchdowns the week before after his appearance. He'll have a good chance of finding the end zone against Washington, however, as the team has allowed the fourth most points against tight ends this season ... Mo Alie-Cox was only targeted twice in the Colts Week 4 game against Chicago . But expect him to be more involved against a Browns team that is prone to bottlenecks - and the passing game in general.
Mike Gesicki, MIA (at SF)
Austin Hooper, CLE (v IND)
Mike Gesicki was held on a single catch for two weeks. It's a worrying trend for the young, tight end that was believed to be a fixture on Miami's offensive as the season begins. Austin Hooper was the beneficiary of the Cowboys' defense last week when he scored five catches for 34 yards and one touchdown during the season. Expect less-than-desirable results this week when the Browns take on the number 1 passing defense in the Colts.
Defense / special teams
Start them up
Dolphins D / ST (at SF)
Eagles D / ST (at the PIT)
Dolphin defense doesn't have many big names, but the group has sat in the middle of the field in most defensive categories this season. San Francisco has shown it is capable of taking the offensive regardless of who is in the middle, but Nick Mullens can still be counted on for a turn or two ... Philadelphia's offensive played so badly that the Eagles always seem to be on the defensive, but the unit has still held up well this season. You're up against the Steelers in a game that is doing pretty badly.
Seahawks D / ST (versus MIN)
Holy D / ST (against LAC)
The Vikings haven't properly lit the scoreboard this season despite keeping a ton of playmakers busy, but they will have a chance against a leaky Seahawks secondary player. This game could quickly turn into a shootout and both defenses should better be left in the free hand ... As mentioned, the saints are in the top two corners. They're traditionally a great defense against the run, but the Chargers will likely focus more on the passing game with Austin Disgust.
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