I am glad you hung on to Will Fuller, Calvin Ridley and Austin Ekeler as they had solid outings. Now, that is not true for all players who I have told you not to cut. O.J. Howard forgot to inform us that he did in fact retire and will no longer need to be rostered on your fantasy team. The Buccaneers receiving options have been wildly difficult to predict. I am at the point now where I do not start Howard, but have yet to drop him. I prioritized grabbing Chris Herndon last week to hopefully provide some production at the tight end position. Check your wire, there is possibly a safer option than Howard, he will have a big game at some point, but I no longer can wait for it.
Things to Remember
Here are a few main points to remember before we get started:
- No quarterbacks are on this list because the position is deep and there are likely many streamable options, or if you are in a Superflex league you likely don’t have many options available.
- Do feel free to drop kickers to make your waiver wire moves, they are also streamable (look for my article to see which ones you should target)
- Use your IR spots if available.
New York Jets
It is difficult to imagine rostering any Jets outside of Le’Veon Bell, who remains a viable option, especially in PPR formats. But let us not forget that Sam Darnold should be returning soon, and he will provide more value to the receiving options than Luke Falk has. Falk, a third-string quarterback, does not throw the ball deep, is not efficient, and has shown the world what the floor is for this offense. Using the RotoViz NFL Stat Explorer, it is obvious that there is no threat, and teams can play high press and keep opposing players from producing at a high level.
Falk is only 1-for-4 on deep targets and has only 16 pass attempts in the mid-range of 10-20 yards. Darnold may not be a gunslinger-style QB, but he is certainly an upgrade.
The one game Crowder played with Darnold was pretty impressive in PPR formats. Crowder managed to haul in 14 catches for 99 yards. The RotoViz Game Splits App highlights the difference in production with and without Darnold.
It is difficult to say how the season will shake out, this is only a one-game sample, but I want Crowder on my bench to see if he retains this massive target share when Darnold returns.
In 2018 Anderson played in 14 games and was targeted more than 10 yards downfield 57 times. Twenty-eight of those were 21-plus yards down the field. Darnold and the Jets were averaging two deep shots per game with Anderson, leading to Anderson as the 11th highest ranked wide receiver in total air yards, despite missing two games. This year he has only seen four such targets. The return of Darnold will open up the ceiling for Anderson and allow you to stream him in favorable matchups. The Jets face Dallas in Week 6, a tough matchup for WR, so you may want to hold out one more week.
Keeping the Faith
The breakout season was upon us. Analysts were planting their flags, opposing coaches quivered in fear – Samuel was a sure-fire bet in the middle rounds. The production has not been there yet. Samuel averages 10.1 points per game in PPR and has only provided one week as a top 24 WR. The excuses for the lack of production are legit, Cam Newton’s injury, playing with a back-up QB, Christian McCaffrey getting an unimaginably high market share of touches, and more. Don’t get me wrong; I am nervous about Samuel. I have not been starting him outside of super deep leagues where each team starts three WR and a flex. But panic and a current lack of production should not lead to a flat out drop.
Better times are ahead. Only four of the Panthers remaining games are negative matchups for WR. Newton’s eventual return, likely after the Week 7 bye, will also boost his value. If Samuel is dropped, go pick him up! If you have, fear not, things will turn around soon. This week’s matchup against Tampa Bay is a juicy one. Two of Samuel’s three highest performances came against the Bucs last season, and he put up 14.3 points against them in Week 2 this season.
Prediction: Samuel 5 receptions for 86 yards and a TD.
Ronald Jones II
It was only a week ago that Jones went over the 50% ownership mark on most platforms. You were right to add him, but you should have assumed the production would not be elite this week against a stingy Saints defense. Jones gets Carolina this week, which is more favorable and could very well be his breakout game. For the first time this season, Jones saw an uptick in targets with three. He saw 12 total opportunities compared to his backfield mate Peyton Barber’s nine. Last week was the third week in a row that Jones had seen at least as many touches as Barber, if not more.
The breakout is coming, if someone in your league drops Jones, grab him immediately!
Patience is Key
Here is a quick list of players I have mentioned before that I am still holding. Check previous articles for a more in-depth look as to why I am holding.