Week 5 Start/Sit Advice
Wednesday, Oct 5, 2022 at 12:21 pm ET
This is the Fantasy Nerd's look at the best and worst matchups for Week 5 of the 2022 NFL season. Analysis is aggregated from multiple sources including FN. Rankings are based upon PPR (point per reception) scoring. Given the known conditions, these matchups are the ones to watch and/or avoid.
Please Note: This list does not generally include the elite players that you are going to start regardless of matchup. You don't need us to tell you to start Jonathan Taylor, Travis Kelce, or Cooper Kupp. Instead, we take a look at other players on your team that we believe either have great matchups or should be avoided for multiple reasons. Factors like opposing defense, performance trending, and peer comparisons may influence our decisions.
Start 'em Joe Burrow (CIN, QB)
When Joe Burrow played the the Ravens last year, he lit them up to the tune of 525 yards passing and 4 touchdowns. While Baltimore will certainly put pressure on him, Burrow has at least 20 fantasy points in his last two games and the Ravens handed Tua Tagovailoa almost 39 fantasy points in Week 2. Burrow is a Top 10 play this week.
3rd Most Pts to QB
Start 'em Tom Brady (TB, QB)
We have no idea as to how Tom Brady's pending divorce will impact his game, but he put up big numbers last week against KC and could do so again this week against the Falcons. Atlanta has surrendered seven touchdowns in their first four games. With a full receiving corp, Brady is back in the QB1 fold.
11th Most Pts to QB
Start 'em Derek Carr (LV, QB)
Even with elite WR Davante Adams, Derek Carr has not been the fantasy stud that many had hoped. He has yet to reach 20 fantasy points in a game this year, but that could change this week against a Kansas City defense that gave up 25 fantasy points to Brady last week. He's a fringe QB1 for Week 5.
5th Most Pts to QB
Start 'em Clyde Edwards-Helaire (KC, RB)
Fantasy analysts across the spectrum have continued to howl against CEH with many recommending folks to sell high. We'd hold onto him. While he's not likely to remain a Top 5 fantasy running back for the whole season, he's there now and the Chiefs have been using him effectively on the ground and through the air (3 of his scores this season were receptions). He'll face a Raiders team that has given up the 5th-most rushing scores and 4th-most receiving yards to running backs.
9th Most Pts to RB
Start 'em James Robinson (JAC, RB)
James Robinson continues to share backfield duties with Travis Etienne, and while his carries and fantasy production dipped last week, look for a nice bounce back game against the Texans in Week 5. Nobody gives up more points (PPR) to backs this year than Houston including Austin Ekeler's monster 3-TD performance against them last week.
Most pts to RB
Start 'em Devin Singletary (BUF, RB)
Devin Singletary has been inconsistent with his production totals, but his usage continues to go up and he's more involved in the passing game than originally anticipated. He'll face a Pittsburgh defense that has been very favorable to RBs on the season. There's enough volume here to keep him in the RB2/Flex discussion.
8th Most Pts to RB
Start 'em Mike Williams (LAC, WR)
Without Keenan Allen, Mike Williams was the alpha receiver hauling in seven of his 11 targets for 120 yards. Allen could be back this week, but we'd still leave Williams in your starting lineup. If Robbie Anderson and Garrett Wilson can have solid days against the Browns, there's no reason that Williams can't.
14th Fewest Pts to WR
Start 'em Amari Cooper (CLE, WR)
Amari Cooper has not been very consistent this year (FN grade of "D"), but keep him in your lineups. The Chargers have a good pass rush but they've also been susceptible through the air. Davante Adams pulled in 30 points. Zay Jones had 24.5 points. Christian Kirk had 19 points. Brandin Cooks hauled in 18 points. Amari Cooper has the same potential here making him a nice flex option for Week 5.
9th Most Pts to WR
Start 'em Robert Woods (TEN, WR)
This one really comes down to opportunities. With Treylon Burks dealing with turf toe, Woods is now the top passing option where he could produce some sneaky good numbers. The hope here is that the run-first Titans open it up a bit more. Woods hasn't had double-digit targets yet, but with Burks limited or potentially missing the game, Woods has an opportunity to shine.
3rd Most Pts to WR
Start 'em Tyler Higbee (LAR, TE)
Even in a tough matchup, Higbee remains a must start. Besides Cooper Kupp, no other player on this team is targeted as frequently as Tyler Higbee. In fact, Higbee leads all tight ends in targets right now. A matchup with the Cowboys isn't ideal, but volume is likely to be the key here. Dallas also hasn't faced a TE like Higbee yet this year, so we'll see how they respond.
7th Fewest Pts to TE
Start 'em David Njoku (CLE, TE)
The matchup isn't great, but Njoku's last two weeks have been pretty solid. He's averaging just over 10 fantasy points per game this season and could be the security blanket that Jacoby Brissett needs when the Chargers pass rush comes storming in. He's ranked just inside our Top 12 making him a fringe TE1.
13th Fewest Pts to TE
Start 'em Minnesota Vikings (MIN, DEF)
The passing game is almost non-existent in Chicago and the turnovers are a problem. That's an issue if you're starting anyone from the offense, but it's music to fantasy ears if you have the Vikings defense. Minnesota has the #2-ranked defense on Fantasy Nerds this week.
3rd Most Pts to DEF
Start 'em Riley Patterson (JAC, K)
Riley Patterson is a name that many fantasy owners may not yet know, but that should change. He has eclipsed the double digit mark in half of his games and he's consistently delivering 8.3 points per game. Houston has given up double-digit fantasy points to kickers in three of the four games this season so far. Patterson is a great streaming option this week.
5th Most Pts to K
Sit 'em Matthew Stafford (LAR, QB)
Dallas put relentless pressure on Carson Wentz last week and you better believe that they're going to bring the heat against Matthew Stafford and the Rams. Stafford utterly wilted against the Niners on Monday night because the offensive line simply could not protect him. Without their starting center, that's likely to be the case once again in Week 5.
6th Fewest Pts to QB
Sit 'em Geno Smith (SEA, QB)
If someone had told you a month ago that Geno Smith would be a Top 10 fantasy option, you probably would have laughed. Believe it or not, but Geno is #9 on the season, but we anticipate him dropping out of the Top 10 after this week. The Saints give up less than a touchdown pass per game and rank as one of the ten least-forgiving defenses. Put Smith on the bench this week.
8th Fewest Pts to QB
Sit 'em Baker Mayfield (CAR, QB)
Many expected more out of Baker Mayfield this season, and while his time may still come, it won't happen in Week 5. Not only has Mayfield failed to throw for multiple touchdowns this year, he'll face a Niners defense that hasn't allowed a QB to put up more than 13 points this season.
2nd Fewest Pts to QB
Sit 'em Cam Akers (LAR, RB)
This is less about the matchup (although it's not great), and more about the player and the system. Cam Akers has largely been ineffective averaging just 4.9 fantasy points per game. He seems to continue losing work to Darrell Henderson, so while he will have big games from time to time, it's too difficult to predict when/if that will happen. Akers is ranked 40th this week making even a flex play hard to justify.
13th Fewest Pts to RB
Sit 'em Ezekiel Elliott (DAL, RB)
Whether it's Ezekiel Elliott or Tony Pollard, neither makes for a great play this week. Both Zeke and Pollard are averaging just 9.1 fantasy points per game (PPR). That's not great heading into a matchup with a stout Rams run defense. They have kept Devin Singletary, Cordarrelle Patterson, and James Conner to less than 9 points. Zeke is a bench play this week.
Feweset Pts to RB
Sit 'em Tyler Allgeier (ATL, RB)
One of the top waiver wire targets this week was Tyler Allgeier getting the start with Cordarrelle Patterson out. He contributed 104 total yards last week, but will face a tough matchup against the Bucs who have largely kept running backs in check. You may have an opportunity to pencil Allgeier into your lineups at some point over the next few weeks, but Week 5 probably isn't the time to test your luck.
3rd Fewest Pts to RB
Sit 'em D.J. Moore (CAR, WR)
The love just doesn't seem to be there for D.J. Moore in Carolina. Baker Mayfield and Moore don't have the chemistry needed to bring Moore back into fantasy relevance. He's the 51st-best fantasy WR on the year so far, but that's not where folks drafted him to be. It seems unrealistic to think that a matchup with the Niners is somehow going to change his fortune.
6th Fewest Pts to WR
Sit 'em Allen Robinson (LAR, WR)
Is it time to give up on Allen Robinson? Panic may be justified here as Robinson has failed to live up to expectations (73rd best fantasy WR on the year). He's averaging just 4.5 targets and only 6.1 fantasy points per game. Until he can develop a rapport with Stafford, Robinson should be on your bench. Without a change soon, he's flirting with being completely droppable in all but the deepest of leagues.
10th Fewest Pts to WR
Sit 'em Chase Claypool (PIT, WR)
After delivering a big doughnut for fantasy owners last week, it's looking more and more like it's time to give up on Chase Claypool. We had a feeling during this past summer that it wouldn't take long for George Pickens to outperform him, and with Kenny Pickett now under center, that seems far more plausible today and going forward. With limited usage and a tough matchup, Chase Claypool shouldn't be anywhere near your starting lineup.
5th Fewest Pts to WR
Sit 'em Irv Smith Jr (MIN, TE)
It's tough to predict when Irv Smith Jr will emerge in this offense as a weekly starter. He's had one good game back in Week 2, but even with 10 targets over the last two games, he's been very pedestrian with his production. Factor in a tough matchup with Chicago and it becomes difficult to recommend anything beyond a seat on the pines right now.
9th Fewest Pts to TE
Sit 'em Logan Thomas (WAS, TE)
We want to be wrong about Logan Thomas. We want to start him. He's big, fast, and has great hands, but his statistical production remains minimal (avg 3.2 receptions for 26.5 yards). He's a touchdown-dependent TE and his only score this year came against Detroit. Tennesse gave up one big game to Mo Alie-Cox last week which skews their ranking. Previously they've kept both Dawson Knox and Darren Waller to 8 points or less.
3rd Most Pts to TE
Sit 'em Washington Commanders (WAS, DEF)
With virtually no edge pressure and question marks at the linebacker position, it's tough to imagine the Commanders bottling up the Tennessee offense. Derrick Henry has looked good recently and we'd expect the Titans to run it a lot.
7th Most Pts to DEF
Sit 'em Younghoe Koo (ATL, K)
After the first month of the season, Younghoe Koo is the 2nd-best fantasy kicker. He's delivered double-digit days in three of the four contests, but we're willing stream someone else this week against the Bucs. No kicker has managed to put up more than five fantasy points so far, and they've faced some decent kickers (Brett Maher, Wil Lutz, and Mason Crosby).
7th Fewest Pts to K
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