Fantasy Island: Week 6 starts and sits

Cincinnati plays Detroit this week. Start Joe Burrow and the rest of your Bengals. (Photo by Alexander Jonesi/Wikimedia Commons)

By MIKE HERNDON

Everything is relative, we know. We might think Kevin Hart is the greatest comedian of all time if we’d never seen Chris Rock or Eddie Murphy or Richard Pryor. We might think Coors is good beer if we’d never had a pale ale or if Germany didn’t exist.

So it is with fantasy football advice. Every suggestion, from waiver wire adds to start/sit advice to trade analyzers, is relative to what you have on your roster. Sometimes it makes sense to “lose” a trade if it fixes a problem on your roster. Sometimes it makes no sense to grab the hot waiver add of the week if he won’t help your team or if you’d have to drop a better player from your bench.

So it is with the start/sit advice we offer each week. We’re trying to avoid the obvious. Start Derrick Henry every week. Don’t bother playing a guy who rarely touches the ball. Follow volume. Bet on talent.

If we say WFT QB Taylor Heinicke is a start this week, that doesn’t mean you’re starting him over Josh Allen. It just means conditions are favorable for him to have a good week. If you need him — as a bye week filler, say — plan accordingly. If you don’t, carry on.

Likewise, you may not have a better option on your bench than recommended “sits” like A.J. Brown and Tyler Lockett. You’re going to play them anyway. Just temper your expectations.

With that said, here’s our start/sit advice for Week 6:

Quarterback:

Start:

Joe Burrow, Bengals — He’s thrown multiple touchdowns in all five of his games this year, posted 280-plus yards in his last two. The Lions’ defense may not be as bad as advertised, as they surprisingly held Kirk Cousins in check last week, but Burrow has this offense operating with much more efficiency than the Vikings.

Taylor Heinicke, Washington Football Team — You probably wouldn’t think of using him except in Superflex, but this could be a nice bounce-back spot for Heinicke, who had 20-plus fantasy points in three straight games until last week’s dud against New Orleans. WFT is going to have to throw to try to keep up in this one and the Chiefs’ secondary hasn’t exactly been stellar.

Sit:

Ryan Tannehill, Titans — Yes, he’ll probably be playing from behind so he may be throwing more than usual, but that didn’t help Patrick Mahomes, of all people, last week against Buffalo’s defense. 

Derek Carr, Raiders — After a blistering first three weeks that saw him throw for 380-plus every game, Carr’s game has fallen back to earth the last two weeks. Now he gets a coaching change and a Denver defense that should be none too happy after last week’s loss to the Steelers. I’m waiting at least a week to see how the coaching transition affects the offense before I can play him proactively.

Running backs:

Start:

Najee Harris, Steelers — Pittsburgh’s first-round draft pick finally busted loose last week with 122 yards and a touchdown behind improved blocking from a young offensive line. Look for him to keep it going against a Seattle defense that hasn’t slowed down much of anybody.

Darrell Henderson, Jr., Rams — He stepped right back into a nearly full workload after coming back from a short injury absence, although Sony Michel was worked in some last week. This week, he’ll face a Giants defense that just got ripped apart by Ezekiel Elliott. Saddle up.¬†

Sit:

Miles Sanders, Eagles — He hasn’t cleared 55 yards or posted double-digit fantasy points since Week One, he has yet to find the end zone, and rookie Kenneth Gainwell is getting more involved. To make matters worse, he’s running into Tampa Bay’s rock-solid front seven this week. Abort. 

Devontae Booker, Giants — Booker was one of the hot waiver wire adds of the week and deservedly so. He seems destined for a full workload as long as Saquon Barkley is sidelined with an ankle injury, and he turned that work into two scores against the Cowboys last week. But a date with the Rams does not bode well for success in his first game as a starter, particularly if Daniel Jones, who also left the Dallas game last week, doesn’t clear the concussion protocol in time to play.

Receivers:
Start:

Stefon Diggs, Bills — He’s largely been a disappointment so far — not terrible, but not worth the second-round pick you spent on him. He wasn’t even much of a factor in last week’s carnival-style win over Kansas City. But a breakout is coming, and there’s not a juicier spot for it than this week against Tennessee. 

Devonta Smith, Eagles — While Tampa Bay has been a black hole for running backs, the Bucs’ secondary has been quite forgiving. The Eagles will also likely be trailing, particularly with how Jalen Hurts has been playing in first halves¬†recently, so they’ll be throwing a lot. When they do, the Slim Reaper is usually the guy on the receiving end.

Ja’Marr Chase, Bengals — He has established himself in a crowded Cincy WR room as the go-to receiver, and the Bengals get the Lions this week. Don’t overthink this. Keep him in your lineup. 

Sit: 

Tyler Lockett, Seahawks — There may still be enough volume to keep D.K. Metcalf afloat, but I wouldn’t want to be playing a secondary receiver — even a 1B who’s as good as Lockett — on a week when we’ve downgraded from Russell Wilson to Geno Smith at quarterback — particularly against a good defense like Pittsburgh.

A.J. Brown, Titans — He’s yet to clear 50 yards in a game this season, and now Julio Jones is returning to practice. He was on a snap count last week and he’s bound to break through at some point, but it’s tough to envision it happening against Tre’Davious White and the Bills.


Tight ends: 

Start:

Mike Gesicki, Dolphins — Yes, Gesicki underwhelmed last week. But he’s getting the targets (7 last week) and the Dolphins get Jacksonville this week. Don’t give up on him yet.

Zach Ertz, Eagles — Dallas Goedert will miss this game on the COVID-19 list, leaving Ertz with a rare full complement of snaps at tight end. See above about Tampa Bay’s pass defense. The only downside will be if the Bucs’ pass rush forces him to stay in and help block.

Sit:

Points are hard enough to come by at tight end. If you’ve got one who’s getting targets and points, forget the matchup. You’re playing him.



Categories: Fantasy Football

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