Week 5 Wrap: Fantasy football fallout of Dak Prescott's terrible injury
New York Giants @ Dallas Cowboys
Dallas continues to play in high-scoring thrillers and despite winning on a field goal after Sunday's time ran out, the Cowboys lost Dak Prescott to a devastating end-of-season leg injury that left the stadium calm (apart from tears). It's a brutal loss (although it's encouraging to give hope to Alex Smith by returning from a similar looking injury earlier in the day) for both the Cowboys and Fantasy managers as Prescott got the most points in four weeks in the history of fantasy football (and it was well on its way to breaking the NFL record with more than 800 attempts to pass).
Andy Dalton is becoming a must-see in the Superflex league given the talent of the Cowboys, but the loss of Prescott undoubtedly hurts the fantasy values of Ezekiel Elliott and especially the Dallas receivers. CeeDee Lamb looked like a young Michael Irvin as he commanded seven goals more than any other Dallas player on Sunday (the Giants had played eight straight games at NFL height without allowing a 100-yard receiver). Dalton had a nice late-night relationship with Michael Gallup, but with Lamb showing up, it could take an Amari Cooper injury before Gallup is more than an option for a fringe flex in the future. Next up, Dallas receives a defense in Arizona that this season keeps fantasy receivers at bay.
As for Zeke, the QB move could make Dallas harder, but it will also result in fewer scoring opportunities (and possessions in general) and any change in his career as a receiver is obviously bad news. The Dak injury is a bummer all round ... Devonta Freeman looked competent enough to run away on New York's lead back job, which makes him flexible in today's RB environment.
Darius Slayton's big game could have been bigger hadn't a TD catch been undone by a questionable penalty. He was supposed to stay locked in fantasy lineups ... Evan Engram had a quick score (and another TD who was called back from a penalty during a nice false field goal) but only managed 16 yards on two targets in an extremely cheap matchup. While health looked like Engram's biggest concern this year, skill was the problem in 2020, as Engram has seen the lowest intended air yards (4.7) in the NFL this year and one despite the Giants losing Saquon Barkley complete fantasy broke and Sterling Shepard (Engram has also ridden the second highest distances under the tight ends while seeing the fourth highest target percentage).
Daniel Jones has had big problems this season and has had the most problems since joining the league (by the way, the Cowboys have already lost as many problems this year (seven) as they did all of last season) but the Giants' sideline was also much worse than expected (and his schedule was incredibly difficult). Still, Danny Dimes can run and has had some monstrous fantasy weeks as a rookie, so he was a giant fantasy dud Sunday in a game with a total of 81 points. He currently has a TD: TO ratio of 2: 8 in five games this season.
Las Vegas Raiders @ Kansas City Chiefs
Clyde Edwards-Helaire only had 10 transfers and only secured 3 of 8 goals, while again failing to score with KC as a 13.5-point home favorite against a Raiders defense who returned the most Fantasy points this season . The rookie was unlucky at times (including a TD catch recalled by a questionable penalty on Sunday) but hasn't scored a touchdown since Week 1 despite receiving a lead-back touch in a strong KC attack , so its "MEH" alternative, the nickname could gain more momentum (it even leaves the field for pedestrian Darrel Williams if he makes ends meet despite all the college production). Still, it was as frustrating as it was to see the eight targets and all the pawns on the goal line to eventually find one's way. So I buy when an Edwards-Helaire manager sells ... Derek Carr was fantastic (11.2 YPA) went to Kansas City and was the first QB to record multiple TD passes against her this season (he had three at halftime ). Carr didn't hesitate to toss deep with the return of Henry Ruggs when the Raiders sparked the surprise and ended my survivor year.
Derek Carr and the Raiders made a big stir in Week 5. (AP Photo / Charlie Riedel)
Carolina Panthers @ Atlanta Falcons
Teddy Bridgewater's numbers could have been even bigger with a better script, as Matt Ryan has a TD passport in his last 11 quarters. The absence of Julio Jones hurts (and Russell Gage had a bad fall) but Ryan is really struggling (note Dan Quinn got fired) ... Todd Gurley has up to five touchdowns a year but certainly benefited from the extremely cheap matchup On Sunday. Now would be a good time to try and trade him ... Mike Davis saw 10 more targets and is a top 3 PPR with no CMC ... While DJ Moore had that beautiful 57 yard score on Sunday, Robby Anderson countered with it Grab it one hand and has clearly emerged as Carolina's No. 1 recipient. He should be treated as a top 15 fantasy fan who is evolving.
Los Angeles Rams @ Washington Football Team
Alex Smith replaced Kyle Allen which is a very cool story and impressive given the 17 surgeries he has performed. 2.2 YPA, however, suggests that we may see more Allen (if healthy) in the future. With Dwayne Haskins being traded rather than starting a new game for Washington, Terry McLaurin better hopes Allen will get better. Smith would be a problem for his imagination (of course, playing against Aaron Donald, who had a career high of four sacks on Sunday, wasn't the easiest situation) ... The Rams backcourt will be the toughest to predict weekly while Tyler is in Higbee Fantasy constellations is no longer trustworthy.
Jacksonville Jaguars @ Houston Texans
Deshaun Watson had predictably had a big game with Bill O'Brien facing a Jaguar defense dealing with a number of injuries, and Brandin Cooks bounced back with a week after setting a zero on many DFS lineups a huge game ... David Johnson didn't. I'm not leaving any work on Duke Johnson with the change of coach, while Darren Fells would step into the TE picture should Jordan Akins keep missing games… Laviska Shenault saw a team with eight goals and an unproductive DJ Chark with an ankle injury clear.
Arizona Cardinals @ New York Jets
With Joe Flacco starting while LT Mekhi Becton and Adam Gase are still training, it almost feels like a win for the Jets to score a touchdown. Jamison Crowder is the only viable Fantasy Jets player, and you will want the Chargers' defense in your week six lineups ... Chris Herndon had a bad fall while a TD on the goal line saved Kenyan Drake's Fantasy Day (Chase Edmonds is become the preferred back) in PPR formats).
Philadelphia Eagles @ Pittsburgh Steelers
Chase Claypool was only the third rookie to ever score four touchdowns while seemingly routinely getting into the open field at will. Claypool's training metrics were off the charts and he was earning the fifth most fantasy points per goal before the breakout on Sunday. With Diontae Johnson emerging as a major health concern and JuJu Smith-Schuster ranked third in average air yards, Claypool is clearly the top week 6 waiver (15% in Yahoo leagues) in his rushing yards on Sunday on this one unlikely carry against a Steelers defense that dropped 99 yards to 47 carry (2.1 YPC) this season. In other words, even though Sanders had a 74 yard TD run on Sunday, the Steelers still have to allow a back for more than 80 yards this season ... Travis Fulgham had an Expert Consensus Ranking of WR # 95 this week - then he secured 10 of 13 goals for 152 yards and a score. His future worth depends on the Eagles' WR health, but Fulgham clearly needs to be included in fantasy leagues.
Cincinnati Bengals @ Baltimore Ravens
The Ravens won easily, but Lamar Jackson only got 4.9 YPA (while racing for three yards only twice) and the running backs continued to offer no fantasy value as Baltimore's (somewhat) sputtering offensive now has a tough stretch ahead (@Phi, bye, Pit, @Ind, @NE). At least Marquise Brown scored his first goal this year ... Joe Mixon has 151 rushing yards and three touchdowns in a game against the Jaguars this year and 223 rushing yards with zero points during his other three competitions combined ... A.J. Green looked droppable before the injury on Sunday, while Tee Higgins continued to emerge as Cincy's wideout with the most fantasies. Joe Burrow struggled to bond, but his willingness to throw deep should mean bigger things to come.
Miami Dolphins @ San Francisco 49ers
The 49ers are dealing with a ton of defensive injuries and Ryan Fitzpatrick has certainly taken advantage of this, particularly to attack Brian Allen, who was promoted from the training team on Saturday night. Preston Williams was looking incredibly sluggish as he recovered from off-season knee surgery, and even managed to get just 15 yards last week against a Seahawks Secondary who entered this week and literally 500 yards more for wide receivers than the next worst team allowed (and Jamal Adams missed). . Nonetheless, Williams set SF on fire on Sunday ... Raheem Mostert looked healthy on his return from a sprained knee and can start with confidence, but it was an otherwise ugly feat of a 49ers offense that occurred for the first time fully loaded. Jimmy Garoppolo had an ankle sprain but was utterly brutal and the coaches won't like watching the movie ... The 49ers are 3-0 home and 2-0 at MetLife and theirs next eight games feature teams with a collective 19-5 record.
Indianapolis Colts @ Cleveland Browns
Treated like a workhorse without Nick Chubb, Kareem Hunt was productive in a tough matchup against a defense that ranked # 1 in DVOA and allowed the fewest yards per game this season. Hunt is a top 5 fantasy player right now ... Trey Burton remains Indy's number 1 (and a sleeper who moves forward) as an ugly Philip Rivers pick-six helped the Browns win this week's only team matchup with winning records.
Minnesota Vikings @ Seattle Seahawks
Russell Wilson finished the race just 217 yards, but led Seattle by 58 yards and added three more TD passes, including a late game winner in fourth place after the Vikings bypassed a short field gate to reach eight. DK Metcalf easily led Seattle with 11 goals and the 22-year-old is well on the way to 16 touchdowns this season. Chris Carson's growing role as a receiver continued with seven career-high goals and Tyler Lockett can safely expect to recover after a few quiet games after the team parted ... Adam Thielen has already hit last year's TD total, while Justin Jefferson was disappointed in a match against a defense that had scored the most fantasy points for wide receivers this season by a clear margin.
Dalvin Cook left with a groin injury and Alexander Mattison impressed with relief (aside from missing that hole during Minnesota's crucial fourth descent) and ran 112 yards (5.6 YPC) in one half against a Seahawks front 7 that only 44 .3 rushing yards allowed for running backs that season (only Pittsburgh had been stingier). Mattison would be an obvious must-see in any fantasy league while Cook is on slack.
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