After Week 5, it’s pretty obvious the season is heating up. Even teams that have been struggling, like the Colts and Chiefs, looked much better in Week 5, than they did in Week 1. The Broncos made a late game-change to Tim Tebow, and their unit looked invigorated on the field. In each instance, this means that fantasy stars can still be born. This is a good time to remind fantasy owners that this is a long season, with at least seven weeks to go in most fantasy football seasons. Preaching patience and surgically directed roster moves, owners should continue assessing their rosters and making sure they have the best players available on their rosters at the QB, WR, TE, and DST positions, while playing the match-up.
This week, owners will be without the services of players from the Broncos, Cardinals, Chargers, Chiefs, Seahawks, and Titans due to the Week 6 Bye. In past weeks, owners were likely scraping for running backs off waivers, while the waivers for quarterbacks and wide receivers probably looked a bit deeper. This week, though, there are a few running backs that should be able to help owners, at least for the short term.
Before getting to this week’s Waiver Targets, The Fantasy Greek shares the results of this week’s on-line poll, totaling the votes casted on both Facebook and this site. This past week’s poll recognized that owners would be looking for wide receivers to fill rosters with several key wide receivers on a bye weeks, and with Andre Johnson out due to injury.
It’s the start of the bye weeks. Which wide-receiver do you think will have the best fantasy game in Week 5?
|How did you Answer?||How did they perform?|
|Percy Harvin||30%||23 APY|
|Plaxico Burress||30%||42 yds.|
|Eric Decker||22%||-4 yds.|
|Pierre Garcon||8.5%||125 yds., 2 TDs|
|Johnny Knox||8.5%||17 yds.|
Because of the bye week, besides noting players that should likely be owned, The Fantasy Greek will try to highlight players that you may have to turn to due to injuries or the bye weeks, as well as comment on their match-up for this weekend. This week, you may want to consider the following players (if available on your waivers), if you think you need the help, or if you have the room on your bench:
Last week, The Fantasy Greek noted that if QB Matt Hasselbeck was available on your waiver wire, you should likely add him first before the other quarterbacks listed below. This week, the Titans are on their bye, but in Week 7, the Titans face a Texans team where you would think the Titans will have to pass the ball to stay in the game.
The quarterbacks noted below are quarterbacks you should consider because of bye week issues, because they have a good match-up this week, or because they are quarterbacks that have shown they could be valuable during the course of the season.
Tim Tebow (Broncos)
Alex Smith (Forty-Niners)
Curtis Painter (Colts)
Colt McCoy (Browns)
Andy Dalton (Bengals)
In a little over one quarter’s worth of playing time, QB Tim Tebow (79 yds., 38 rush yds., 2 TDs) almost rallied the Broncos back to beat a Chargers defense that is much better than it appears to be on paper. For owners whose recollection is longer than the current week, in the last three weeks of last season, Tebow turned the fantasy world on fire by posting 881 all purpose yards, 11 TDs (rushing and passing), on only 3 interceptions! If you do the math over the course of the season, Tebow’s numbers would have been out of sight. Indeed, he appears to be a difficult quarterback to defend in a Michael Vick sort of way for opposing defenses. While it’s not official that Tebow will be the Broncos starter after the Week 6 bye, it’s hard to imagine a team struggling at 1-4 won’t give him the start with the way he rallied the team. We should know soon if the Broncos go with Tebow. If they go with him, Tebow is a player to add now, during his bye week. In Week 7, the Broncos face a Dolphins team that is one of the worst defending the pass.
Two weeks ago if The Fantasy Greek even suggested QB Alex Smith as a waiver wire add, it would have garnered quiet, under the breath chuckles from various fantasy circles. Yet, last week, Alex Smith was a recommended add as he had begun to post multiple TDs in two of his last three games. In Week 5, Smith faced a Bucs pass defense that could be beaten, and Smith (170 yds., 3 TDs, 0 INTs) rewarded who trusted him last week. In Week 7, Smith gets a Lions defense that certainly can get after the quarterback. Still, Smith will likely have to pass the ball as he has the last several weeks.
Last week, The Fantasy Greek also mentioned QB Curtis Painter as a waiver wire add in part due to the favaorable match-up he had against a Chiefs pass defense that is towards the top of all teams allowing fantasy points to the QB position. Painter (277 yds., 2 TDs, 0 INTs) rewarded fantasy owners that weren’t one of the faint of heart. Week 6 the Colts play the Bengals who have been very good against opposing quarterbacks. In Week 7, however, Painter gets a Saints pass defense that has been generous to opposing quarterbacks.
If you need some help this week, QB Colt McCoy is a waiver wire option. If you can say one thing about McCoy, he’s generally been consistent. In Week 6, he faces a Raiders team that has had its share of problems defending the pass. So, for owners who need the help, McCoy is a decent waiver add for Week 6.
If you miss out on the above, it looks like it might be time to give QB Andy Dalton his due if you need help in Week 6. Indeed, the Bengals face a Colts pass defense that can be beaten and if 200 yards and 2 TDs works for you, you can use Dalton as a bye week replacement if need be.
Last week, Ryan Torrain, Dexter McCluster, Stevan Ridley, and Bernard Scott were all potential waiver wire adds. This week, McCluster is a player to drop given the fact that he has failed to catch on as a rushing threat for the Chiefs. As for Stevan Ridley, he is one to bench for now until we see if his role in the offense is regained. In the meantime, these are running backs owners should consider adding this week:
Jackie Battle (Chiefs)
Delone Carter (Colts)
Donald Brown (Colts)
RB Jackie Battle (140 APY) had a phenomenal game this weekend for the Chiefs. With Jamaal Charles out due to injury for the rest of the season, the Chiefs look like they have found his replacement. This week, even though the Chiefs may play their cards close to the vest, look for Battle to be a hot name off the waiver wire as he clearly appears to be the running back that the Chiefs should lead this team going forward. With the Chiefs on a bye, Battle would face the Raiders in Week 7, a team that has had a tough time containing opposing running backs.
Colts’ RB Joseph Addai sustained what appears to be a significant hamstring injury this week. Even though there is some talk that RB Donald Brown (38 yds.) will get a substantial amount of snaps for the next few weeks, RB Delone Carter (34 yds., 1 TD) seems to be the better talent and should overtake Brown. If you disagree, add Brown. This week, the Colts face a Bengals team that is not as strong defending the rush than the pass. For owners looking for a decent flex-play, both Brown and Carter could fit the bill, but it is Carter that looks like the better value.
RB To Keep An Eye On: Jonathan Dwyer (v. Jaguars). Even though RB Rashard Mendenhall was not used due to injury, RB Isaac Redman (61 APY) was awful compared to the No. 3 RB for the Steelers, RB Jonathan Dwyer (113 APY). It will be interesting to see whether Dwyer has done enough to earn more playing time going forward.
Pierre Garcon (Colts)
Victor Cruz (Giants)
Darrius Heyward-Bey (Raiders)
Steve Breaston (Chiefs)
Doug Baldwin (Seahawks)
Yet again, Pierre Garcon, Colts, (125 yds., 2 TDs) was a favorite target of QB Curtis Painter’s this week. Now, that the Colts look more in sync, Garcon should be a useful asset as the Colts team seems to have found itself in its new offense. There is a good chance Garcon is still on waivers, having been dumped by impatient owners. Now, Garcon should be added back onto rosters. While the match-up this week against the Bengals won’t be easy, the match-up against the Saints in Week 7 should require the Colts to pass the ball often.
If you didn’t get a chance to add Victor Cruz, Giants (161 yds., 1 TD, 1 FMBL) last week, add him now. Cruz has at least established himself as a go-to receiver in the Giants offense. He seems to have a nose for the end zone. This week, the Giants play the Bills and the Bills have been wide receiver friendly all season long.
Don’t look now, but WR Darrius Heyward-Bey, Raiders (214 yds., 1 TD past two games) is looking like a player that needs to be owned in fantasy whereas WR Denarius Moore may not be. It’s unclear why Heyward-Bey has come on as he has, but he has looked good, connecting with QB Jason Campbell. In Week 6, the Raiders face a Browns pass defense that has been tough against wide receivers but in Week 7, the Raiders face a Chiefs pass defense that has been pretty bad in its pass coverage.
Speaking of the Chiefs, it’s about time owners considered WR Steve Breaston, Chiefs (141 yds., 2 TDs past two games) for starts, assuming he is still not on waivers. This is Breaston’s second week in a row where he has posted some significant stats that fantasy owners could use. While the Chiefs are on a bye week in Week 6, in Week 7 they face a Raiders pass defense that has had its share of problems defending the pass.
Don’t look now, but WR Doug Baldwin, Seahawks (220 yds., 1 TD) looks like a player that can be used in fantasy. Baldwin is the Seahawks third receiver, but he has played well regardless of who the No. 2 wide-out is for the Seahawks. Certainly, Baldwin is not a sexy add, but in fantasy, who really cares. In Week 6, the Seahawks are on the bye, and in Week 7, they face a fairly tough Browns pass defense. Still, if you need a bye week replacement, you could do worse.
WR to Keep Your Eye on: Titus Young, Lions. While Nate Burleson has fallen out of favor, Titus Young has been quietly being productive for the Lions with 181 yards posted in Weeks 2 through 4. Let’s see how Young does, as he is expected to grow.
Also, Keep Your Eye on: Austin Collie, Colts. Collie has been off fantasy radars for some time now. However, this week, Collie posted some decent yards (50 yds.). With the offense coming alive again, Collie could be a player to add soon.
In the bye weeks, fantasy owners are more interested in filling the tight-end position than positing for the future. In any case, the pool of tight-ends is running thin. So, here are a few tight-ends that could help you in Week 6, and possibly beyond, if available.
Ed Dickson (Ravens)
Jermaine Gresham (Bengals)
Heath Miller (Steelers)
Kevin Boss (Raiders)
Delanie Walker (Forty-Niners)
Joel Dreesen (Texans)
With the bye week, TE Ed Dickson, Ravens, may have been cast-off to waivers to make roster room for another needed player. Dickson faces a Texans defense that has limited opposing tight-ends, but with the defensive line possibly struggling, Dickson is a talent that owners can consider this week.
The Fantasy Greek mentioned Jermaine Gresham, Bengals, last week. Gresham has posted 50-plus yards in four of the last five games, and two TDs in the last two games. While a Week 6 date with the Colts may not be the greatest, it’s not the worst either.
The Fantasy Greek is not the biggest fan of Heath Miller, Steelers, because of his inconsistency, but with a match-up against the Jaguars who were giving up the second-most points to tight-ends entering Week 5, Miller certainly has a chance here, especially coming off a 46 yard, 1 TD performance.
Kevin Boss, Raiders, missed Week 5, but prior to that, posted over 100 yards in the past two games. In Week 6, the Raiders face a Browns defense that has struggled immensely against opposing tight ends.
Delanie Walker, Forty-Niners (37 yds., TD) is mentioned because with the loss of WR Josh Morgan to a broken ankle. The Forty-Niners will need to be creative in the passing game, which means Walker could get more involved in the offense. This is definitely a speculative add for the sole purpose of Week 6 use, where the Forty-Niners face an average defense against opposing tight-ends, the Lions, but if you are desperate, Walker is a reasonable one-week flier who could have a larger role.
Similarly, TE Joel Dreesen, Texans, could have a larger role as he did in Week 5 (112 yds., 1 TD), with Andre Johnson out for a couple of more weeks. In Dreesen’s case, the Texans face one of the better defenses against tight-ends, the Ravens.
If the Forty-Niners DST is still available on waivers, you should add them. They have played well above their opponents since the beginning of the season. Likewise, the Bills DST has been outstanding, especially in intercepting the ball and generating defensive TDs. The Bills are an opportunistic defensive unit that needs to be owned and started in fantasy.
Other defenses to consider in Week 6:
Steelers (v. Jaguars). The unit looked good this past week and this week, faces a Jaguars offense lead by a rookie QB.
Raiders (v. Browns). The Raiders are playing inspired football and the Browns are towards the middle of all teams in protecting the pigskin.
Bengals (v. Colts). The Colts have looked better lately, but the Bengals are just a good defensive unit.
Saints (v. Buccaneers). The Buccaneers have just struggled on both sides of the ball, especially on offense. The Saints could take advantage of this.
Good luck this week!