Last week felt crazier than usual with tons of missed kicks, a double punt, multiple overtimes, and incredible comebacks, all leading to some wild fantasy performances. As we prepare for Week 6, some of us were on the wrong side of those massive outputs and need some fantasy miracles.
Here is this week’s crop of lottery starters, players who could come up big for you as bye week fill-ins for Week 6 — or they may not.
We call this column Wild Card starts for a reason, after all.
Sony Michel, RB (Rams) @ Giants
Michel isn’t known for setting off fireworks on the field, at least on any consistent basis. However, this year in LA he’s getting the kind of work we like to see from an RB3 with flex potential. He’s on the field for an average of 31% of the snaps through five games, but his touch rate per snap is 50.5 percent, meaning he’ll most likely get the ball when on the field. He’s also seeing red-zone usage, with eight attempts so far in 2021 from inside the 20-yard line and two more inside the five.
The Giants have allowed the eighth-most fantasy points to opposing RBs this season, and this contest’s game script should lean towards higher usage for Michel. His value is enhanced when the Rams are ahead and in control of the game, which should be the case in New York against a depleted Giants’ offense.
Mo Alie-Cox, TE (Colts) vs. Texans
The Colts are still giving us the dreaded TE-by-committee approach, but Alie-Cox may be running away with the starting job. He’s seen nine balls in the past two games, while Jack Doyle and Kylen Granson were targeted two and four times, respectively. He wasn’t able to find the end zone against Baltimore on Monday night after a two-score performance in Week 4, but he did catch 3-of-4 balls for 56 yards.
This week MAC gets a Texans defensive unit that has surrendered the most half-PPR points per contest so far this season to the TE position, allowing 17.0 per tilt. If you’re without George Kittle or Kyle Pitts and need a boom-or-bust fill-in, or your regular TE has a low floor, MAC could be your guy.
Quez Watkins, WR (Eagles) vs. Buccaneers
If you’re looking for big-play potential this week Watkins may just be your Huckleberry. The sophomore WR has been a deep-threat monster through five games, with three receptions of 20+ yards according to PFF, along with accolades of third in deep yards after the catch with 64, and the highest PFF grade for pass routes among WRs with a whopping 99.9.
What’s particularly appealing about Watkins this week is his matchup, as the Eagles face a Tampa Bay secondary that has allowed the second-highest fantasy points to wideouts in 2021. There have been seven touchdowns scored by WRs on the Bucs through five games which is the fourth most, plus Tampa is giving up an average of 204 receiving yards per contest to the position. Fire up Watkins if you require some WR love this week and don’t already have the weaponry, as he’s free in 98 percent of Yahoo leagues.
DeAndre Carter, WR (Football Team) vs. Chiefs
With a big chunk of the Washington receiving room on the shelf, it’s next man up for DeAndre Carter. The 28-year-old surprisingly saw eight targets after Curtis Samuel left the Week 5 game in the first quarter with a groin injury, and he was used in shorter routes similar to how they’d deploy Samuel.
There could be an increased role once again for Carter this week with only Terry McLaurin, slot fill-in Adam Humphries and Ricky Seals-Jones in competition for non-RB passing targets. Some much-needed good news for the Football Team WRs is the Chiefs are allowing 33.3 half-PPR points per tilt to receiving corps in 2021, which ranks 21st in the NFL. Carter may not be a starter for everyone, but he’s worthy of a dart throw if you’re in desperation mode.
Dan Arnold, TE (Jaguars) vs. Dolphins (In London)
After a full week to amalgamate into the Jaguars’ system, Arnold was the target leader (8) in Week 5, and he also led the Jacksonville offense in receptions (6) and receiving yards (64).
This week he gets a Miami defense that just allowed Tom Brady to throw for 452 yards and five touchdowns. The Dolphins are surrendering an average of 11.3 half-PPR points to TEs weekly, which wouldn’t be too bad for a TE flyer. As an added bonus, this game takes place across the pond which tends to conjure up some wild games where anything can happen. Consider Arnold a TE2 with the potential for some magic in Week 6.