This is a make a break week for Murray. He is either going to make me very happy by throwing for 300-plus yards against arguably one of the worst defenses in football, or I am going to break my television set if he stinks again. Seriously, this matchup is as good as it gets for Murray. The Bengals secondary is the weakest part of their defense and Larry Fitzgerald and David Johnson have dominant matchups. Murray has been running more recently, so everything points toward this being the breakout game his fantasy owners have been seeking.
The Jets secondary has been miserable all season (in fact, they are the fourth-worst team against opposing wide receivers) which gives Wentz a real opportunity to have a big game. Wentz has played well this season, but he really hasn’t had that “breakout game” that his fantasy owners have been waiting for. With the Jets doing everything they can to stop the run, Wentz should be able to find Alshon Jeffery and Zach Ertz and put up 300-plus yards of passing offense.
As of right now, it looks like Jones is going to get the bulk of the touches because Jamaal Williams is still missing practice due to the concussion he suffered last week. Dallas has a tough run defense, but they can be beat by a running back who catches passes out of the backfield. With Dallas likely playing with a lead, Jones will get tons of targets (remember Davante Adams is out), which should help his fantasy total immensely.
David Johnson, Arizona Cardinals
I try not to overrate statistics, but sometimes they are on point. The Bengals are statistically so bad against the run that last Monday night BOTH James Conner and Jaylen Samuels had huge nights to help the Steelers win. On Sunday, the Cardinals are going to feature Johnson extensively and I think he will have the most carries that he has had all season. There is a good chance he even catches three to four passes as well. Be sure to lock Johnson into your lineups visionary style in Week 5!
Many fantasy owners will consider benching Ekeler because of Melvin Gordon’s return but that might end up becoming a terrible mistake. First, Gordon is not going to get a full load of carries in his first game back. Second, the Chargers receiving corps is so badly decimated that Ekeler might need to play slot receiver on Sunday. Regardless, Ekeler should be on the field for 75% of snaps, which will be more than enough for him to have a huge day.
Larry Fitzgerald, Arizona Cardinals
With Christian Kirk questionable for this week’s game against the Bengals, Kyler Murray will have no choice but to force feed the ball to his top receiver, Larry Fitzgerald. Fitz has 23 receptions thus far and I expect that he will have another eight in this game. In my weekly analysis I look at players’ floors (the worst they should do) compared with their ceilings (the best they can do). Fitz’s floor this week is 15 points, and his ceiling is 25 points if he can find the end zone.
Thielen was one of the Vikings who expressed frustration at the fact that the passing game has been so putrid this season. When a player complains, the coaching staff usually makes sure to get that player involved in the game plan the following week. I think Thielen gets an awful lot of targets against a bad Giants secondary (third-worst against opposing wide receivers) and fantasy owners need to take advantage of that. I will be playing him in all seasonal leagues as well as a handful of my DFS lineups.
Josh Gordon, New England Patriots
Week 4 was a brutal week for Tom Brady. The Bills defense held him to 150 yards passing and zero TDs. Week 5 should be the opposite, as the Patriots play the hapless Redskins. I think this is a week that Tom Brady and the passing attack steps up and busts out. It also doesn’t hurt that the Redskins have the second-worst points against opposing wide receivers. Gordon should be able to find the end zone at least once, and maybe twice if the game becomes a blowout.
Tyler Eifert, Cincinnati Bengals
The Cardinals are statistically the worst team in the NFL against opposing tight ends, so I am going to go to the well on this one and start Eifert. Two other things are working in Eifert’s favor: 1) WR John Ross is out with a shoulder injury, so there will be more targets for other players not named Tyler Boyd. 2) Eifert just missed out on a TD in the end zone on Monday night which confirms that Dalton still likes going to him in red zone situations.
Jared Cook, New Orleans Saints
Nothing in Cook’s last few games should give us any expectation that he is a visionary play, but hear me out for a minute. Last week Cook had six targets (up from two the week before) in Teddy Bridgewater’s second start. Also, I look at the fact that the Bucs are the second-worst team against opposing tight ends in the league. If Todd Bowles double-covers WR Michael Thomas as expected, this should leave the middle open for Cook to do some damage. It’s a leap of faith play, but there is significant upside here if you are willing to take the risk.
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