2019 Fantasy Football Week Five: Starts, Sits, and Sleepers

Joshua Abbe, Mason Thompson, Givanni Damico | October 5th, 2019 

With four weeks in the books, we are a quarter of the way through the 2019 fantasy season. Several big-name players have been lost to injury but new fantasy stars are in the making. To help fantasy football players with their roster construction, three of our writers have provided some insight on which players they would start, would sit, and consider a sleeper for week five. Be sure to follow all of them on twitter and ask any of The Scorecrow’s fantasy writers for fantasy advice.

Quarterbacks

Starts

Jacoby Brissett @ Kansas City Chiefs

The Chiefs have allowed almost 20 fantasy points a game to opposing quarterbacks so far this season. Mix in an average 277 passing yards and Brissett is set up nicely in what could be a shootout in Kansas City. He’s also the only quarterback to throw multiple touchdowns in all four games and his last two games he has thrown for an average 288 yards. Nice QB1 play here Sunday. – Josh

Andy Dalton vs Arizona Cardinals 

If you missed out on Brissett, don’t fret. Dalton has been a reliable fantasy option so far this year, well, besides last week. This week he goes up against a Cardinals secondary that is still without star corner Patrick Peterson and that has given up the second-most fantasy points to the quarterback position so far. Dalton is a plug-and-play start this week against a pitiful Cardinals defense. – Mason

Kyler Murray @ Cincinnati Bengals

The Bengals have been a dumpster fire this year and their defense has been a major contributor to that. Murray’s dual-threat ability should allow him to torch Cincy both on the ground and in the air. – Gio

Sits

Derek Carr vs Chicago Bears

Carr faces a Bears defense that has only allowed four touchdown passes in 2019. It also only allowed an average of 12 fantasy points per game to the position. He’s only reached just under 16 fantasy points once this season and the Bears are not a favorable matchup this weekend. – Josh

Marcus Mariota vs Buffalo Bills

After a great game against Atlanta last week, Mariota gets a horrific matchup against the Bills. The Bills defense forced Tom Brady into a terrible game last week and I’d look for a similar stat-line this week from Mariota. This should be a defensive game, resulting in a bad fantasy performance for most offensive players. – Mason

Gardner Minshew @ Carolina Panthers

Despite being a national treasure, leave Minshew on the bench this week. The Panthers have had the best passing defense through four weeks and the Jaguars’ wide receivers aren’t known for their great route-running ability. Minshew has had nice production so far, but nothing to warrant starting him against the best passing defense in football. – Gio

Sleepers

Jameis Winston @ New Orleans Saints

Facing a Saints defense that allows 24 fantasy points a game to quarterbacks in the four weeks so far, Winston looks to have the repeat if not better performance from last week against the Rams. Saints are also letting teams an average six yards a play and 279.2 yards in passing a game. Plus, a favorable 66% completion rate. Winston is a nice QB1 sneaky play with possibly a huge outcome. – Josh

Jimmy Garoppolo vs Cleveland Browns

If Mariota can pick apart the Browns defense, so can Jimmy G. In a battle with two of the most interesting, up-and-coming teams, the contest could be very offensive-minded with one team trying to keep up with the other. Some fantasy players might’ve dropped him during his bye week last week. If you need a reliable quarterback this week that could put up a monster game, look no further. – Mason

Teddy Bridgewater vs Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Bridgewater has gotten the job done for the Saints so far, but his stats haven’t been mind-boggling. This week, he faces the awful Buccaneers’ secondary. If he can find Michael Thomas and take some risks, he could be looking at a big week to finally put him on the fantasy map. – Gio

Running Backs

Starts

Mark Ingram @ Pittsburgh Steelers

Steelers defense has given up around 28 fantasy points and 113 rushing yards per game to opposing running backs. Ingram has an average six yards per attempt and Pittsburgh has allowed 4.1 yards per rush attempt. Throw in the Steelers allowing 122 yards a game to running back, making it an enticing matchup for Ingram’s first taste of the Ravens/Steelers rivalry. – Josh

Devonta Freeman @ Houston Texans

Though lackluster so far this year, Freeman has the chance to show that he can be a viable RB2. He has been a major focal point in the passing game since Atlanta has been trailing a lot this year. Now, Freeman gets the Houston defense which has allowed the most catches by running backs so far this year. If he doesn’t produce this week, I’d look to find a trade partner for him. – Mason

Austin Ekeler vs Denver Broncos

Everybody is panicking about Melvin Gordon coming back and how Ekeler will be rendered useless in fantasy now. This is simply not the case. Ekeler should play a James White role and catch a bunch of passes out of the backfield while still getting good looks on the ground. His production has been undeniable and for the Chargers to completely remove him from any role would be stupid. – Gio

Sits

David Montgomery @ Oakland Raiders

Besides Vikings’ running back Dalvin Cook, the Raiders have allowed the 14th fewest fantasy points and held enemy running backs to 56 rushing yards through four weeks. He struggled last week so a breakout is due soon, but not sure if it’s this week. – Josh

Miles Sanders vs New York Jets

Just when fans thought the Eagles backfield belonged to Sanders, Jordan Howard went and scored three touchdowns. In a prime matchup this week if he were the starter, Sanders is a major question mark. Though he is out snapping Howard, there is no way I’d put my trust in him after last week in this mess of a backfield. – Mason

Aaron Jones @ Dallas Cowboys

Jones averaged an impressive 5.5 yards per carry last season, but this season, that number has dropped to an abysmal 3.3 yards per carry. His vision hasn’t been good and going up against a stout Dallas Cowboys’ defense won’t do him any good. If you have a better option, you’re better off leaving Jones on your bench this week. – Gio

Sleepers

Damien Williams vs Indianapolis Colts

With Williams returning this week, he will be sharing the workload with LeSean McCoy and faces a Colts defense that has given up 132 rushing yards a game and an average five yards a rush. He could be a sneaky play given his success week one in the game plan. – Josh

Josh Jacobs vs Chicago Bears

I know what you’re thinking, how could Jacobs produce vs the Bears defense? Well, here’s how. The Bears are starting Chase Daniel at quarterback this week and it should be a surprisingly close game in London. Though it’s not a great matchup, I expect Jacobs to be a major part of the Raiders plan this week, especially because the Raiders’ two wins have come when Jacobs has gotten a high number of touches. – Mason

Jaylen Samuels @ Baltimore Ravens

The Steelers used Samuels in every offensive role possible last week. He was passing the ball, running the ball, catching the ball, and blocking for his teammates. They seem to trust him as a complementary piece to James Conner and he could play a similar role to White and Ekeler. – Gio

Wide Receivers

Starts

Adam Thielen @ New York Giants 

After posting up a stinker last week with a measly 2.6 fantasy points, Thielen looks to bounce back in a big way with the Giants giving up second-most points to receivers lined up to the outside. They have also allowed the second-most touchdowns to wideouts and Thielen has 62% of the Vikings deep targets. – Josh

Josh Gordon @ Washington Redskins

I could have listed any Patriots receiver in this slot this week as I expect all three (Julian Edelman, Phillip Dorsett, and Gordon) to produce. I went with Gordon. He’s been solid all year and should finally score a touchdown this week against a Redskin defense that is still trying to find themselves. – Mason

Tyler Boyd vs Arizona Cardinals

Despite lack of success this season, the Bengals continue to throw the ball quite often. Boyd will take on a secondary that is still missing Peterson and that has let up too many yards to opposing receivers this year. Boyd has been productive every game except last week and that should continue against a poor defense that Dalton should want to expose. – Gio

Sits

D.J. Moore vs Jacksonville Jaguars

Moore has only been targeted by Kyle Allen 12% of the time this season. While it’s only a two-game sample size, it’s still concerning and worth the monitoring until at least Cam Newton returns or game plan seems to shift. Curtis Samuel is being target six more times than Moore. – Josh

Tyrell Williams vs Chicago Bears

While Williams has scored in each game so far this year, he hasn’t had much production outside of the scores, as he has posted just 111 yards combined the past three games. In a game against a tough Bears secondary, I’d keep Williams on your bench. – Mason

Dede Westbrook @ Carolina Panthers

Sit Westbrook for the same reason that you should sit Minshew. Opposing receivers have been getting strapped by the Panthers and this would be a poor choice unless you have no one better. – Gio

Sleepers

Calvin Ridley @ Houston Texans

If you own Ridley like myself, you’re dealing with the same headache I have. Though I see the light at the tunnel with this Sunday and it’s at the expense of the Texans. The Texans are giving up the third-most fantasy points to wideouts lined up on the outside. With Ridley lining up 85% of the time outside and the focus on fellow receiver Julio Jones, Ridley could finally breakout Sunday. – Josh

Courtland Sutton @ Los Angles Chargers

Sutton exploded last week, scoring two touchdowns against Jacksonville. This week he faces a Chargers defense which might seem like a bad matchup, but he won’t be facing off with Casey Hayward, as he’s lining up against Emmanuel Sanders. If you have Kenny Golladay on a bye week or Davante Adams, look to sub in Sutton. – Mason

Cole Beasley @ Tennessee Titans

Even if Josh Allen sits, Matt Barkley is a very capable quarterback. He likes throwing the ball and will likely rely on Beasley and John Brown in this game against Tennessee. Beasley is currently top 10 in the league in receptions, and if he can get one of those in the endzone this week, this play will pay off. – Gio

Tight Ends

Starts

Austin Hooper @ Houston Texans

Second in fantasy points at the tight end position and first in routes ran, Hooper is on a tear and quarterback Matt Ryan’s radar right now. Texans are tough on tight ends but withJones, Ridley, and Mohamed Sanu to worry about, Hooper should have another big day. – Josh

Tyler Eifert vs Arizona Cardinals

Eifert hasn’t been the same since his multitude of injuries. This week, he plays the Cardinals who have been very nice to tight ends four weeks into the season. Pick up Eifert this week if you need help at tight end. – Mason

O.J. Howard @ New Orleans Saints

This could be considered a sleeper pick because the Saints’ defense has looked great so far this season. Howard hasn’t been very productive this year, but after seeing Winston’s performance last week, I’m confident that he can get the ball to Howard this week. Let’s hope Winston isn’t bipolar and can repeat the same feat. – Gio

Sits

Jared Cook vs Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Cook just hasn’t built chemistry with Bridgewater yet and it is showing. Ranking 15th in targets a game and 21st in red-zone routes for the tight end position, Cook might be a desperation stream this week. He hasn’t topped 37 yards or scored a touchdown yet this season. – Josh

Trey Burton @ Oakland Raiders

Burton has lost his mojo in the Chicago offense. He isn’t even being targeted four times a game and now he must get used to a new quarterback under center. In what might look like a great matchup against Oakland, I’d look elsewhere. – Mason

Delanie Walker vs Buffalo Bills

The Bills’ defense has been fantastic so far this year and hasn’t given up much of anything to opposing tight ends this year. Walker will be in for a rough day with little production, so he’s better off on the bench. – Gio

Sleepers

Eric Ebron @ Kansas City Chiefs

With Sunday’s matchup likely ending up in either a shoot-out or blow out, Colts will be looking to pass a lot. In a touchdown-dependent situation, the Chiefs have struggled against the position and should allow Ebron to have a great game. – Josh

Noah Fant @ Los Angeles Chargers

Fant finally showed signs of life in a Denver offense looking for a spark in the passing game. This week, I feel like Fant will produce again against the Chargers. With Joe Flacco looking more his way and being more confident, Fant should become a reliable option. – Mason

Tyler Eifert vs Arizona Cardinals

Eifert hasn’t done much yet this year, but with the loss of John Ross, he should be able to get more involved in this offense. Don’t be surprised if Dalton is relying on him heavily against the Cardinals, but be careful, because Eifert’s production has been very inconsistent throughout his entire career. – Gio

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