2014 Fantasy Football: Week 5 Gold Mine
The first quarter of the NFL season is officially over. With one of the biggest bye weeks in a long time now in the review mirror, it’s time to start looking toward the future.
Last week we saw pro bowlers like Marshawn Lynch, AJ Green, Peyton Manning and Larry Fitzgerald all on byes, but this week we won’t have to deal with as much of a loss with only the Dolphins and the Raiders on bye.
Despite most fantasy starters being back in your lineups, there are still moves that can be made in an effort to succeed. And while those moves may not win your game this week, they will certainly set you up for long term success.
As always check out these players owned in less than 25% of ESPN Leagues.
Mike Glennon (TB): In 2013 I was very high on Mike Glennon (who is virtually unowned) and was a bit shocked to see Lovie Smith bring in Josh McCown with how well Glennon performed down the stretch. In 2013, Glennon threw for over 175 yards 9 times, and from November on, Glennon recorded six games of two touchdowns. When McCown went down with a thumb injury in the shellacking the Bucs took on Thursday Night Football a few weeks ago, Glennon got the chance to come back and show why he should’ve been the starter to begin with. With limited time on the field Glennon recorded 121 yards through the air and a score while not turning the ball over. The next week all he did was throw for 300 yards and two scores, good for 22 fantasy points.
In week 5, the Bucs head to New Orleans where the struggling Saints are looking to bounce back from their ugly 1 – 3 start. With how great the Saints offense can be, this most certainly will be a shoot out through the air and Glennon will benefit from that tremendously. The Saints are the 27th worst defense against opposing QBs in 2014 and have not recorded a single interception through four games, while giving up three touchdowns in two of those match ups and at least 200 yards passing in all four.
Jerick McKinnon (MIN): While the Adrian Peterson saga continues to unfold in Minnesota, it has been the emergence of Matt Asiata and Jerick McKinnon (7.3%) that has stolen the show, and they pack one heck of a thunder and lighting combo. While Asiata has been doing his thing for the last few weeks, it wasn’t until Week 4 that the Vikings decided to add a little lightning to their arsenal by giving McKinnon 18 carries. He exploded for a total of 135 yards on the ground and another 17 yards through the air on one catch.
Prior to the season even AD himself said to watch out for this rookie as his explosive speed, vision, and excellent jump cuts would be a problem in the Vikings run game. The Vikings head to Green Bay where they will take on the 29th worst team against the run. The Packers have given up at least 100 yards in three of the four contests while allowing four touchdowns through the first four games of the year. While Asiata and McKinnon will continue to share the duties in Minnesota, McKinnon is a great back to keep your eye on, specifically in deeper leagues where his quickness make him a solid flex option moving forward.
Louis Murphy (TB): The aforementioned Glennon will certainly aid to Louis Murphy (0.1%) growing in Tampa Bay. While Murphy may only be a deep league option, his six catches for 99 yards this past Sunday are promising if Glennon and Murphy can stay on the same page. Murphy had a team high 11 targets in Week 4 and saw himself on the field for more than 60% of the offensive snaps. he Saints have given up the fifth most points to opposing wide receivers, which bodes well for both Glennon and Murphy in deeper leagues.
Allen Hurns (JAC): I refused to talk about Hurns after his one-quarter miracle in Week 1 where he gained over 100 yards on three catches with two touchdowns. However, I clearly didn’t see what the Jags saw in him as he has been a nice commodity in Jacksonville for more than just that one game. Hurns (12.4%) is averaging 13.5 points per game through the first quarter of the season compiling three touchdowns and 12 catches. With Marqise Lee, Marcedes Lewis and Cecil Shorts nursing injuries, it has been Hurns that has received the bulk of the attention. The Jags stay home this week where they will face Pittsburgh who has given up at least 40 fantasy points to opposing wide receivers in back to back games and at least 30 points in three of the first four. With Blake Bortles coming into his own, look for Hurns to reap the benefits.
Markus Wheaton (PIT): On the other side of the ball from Hurns will be Markus Wheaton (18.9%) who has quietly been a nice second receiver for the Steelers through four games. Wheaton hasn’t found the end zone just yet, but he has had at least four grabs in each game to start his career while compiling at least 35 yards in each game. A standout at Oregon St, Wheaton compiled 91 receptions, 1,244 yards and 11 touchdowns in his senior season, which goes to show the level of talent this young receiver has. The Jaguars are the second worst team against opposing wide receivers giving up a total of 41.5 points per game. It’s only a matter of time before Wheaton breaks out.
Heath Miller (PIT): Heath Miller (20%) has been a model of consistency in Pittsburgh for many years. With great route running ability, a knack to find the end zone and his rapport with QB Ben Roethlisberger, Miller has been one of the most reliable pass catchers in Pittsburgh. Miller had a pretty consistent season leading up to his Week 4 match up against the Bucs, gaining at least 30 yards in two of the three contests while racking up 11 receptions. Although he hadn’t found the end zone until last week, he surely made up for it with a 10-catch, 85 yard, and one touchdown performance. The Jags are bad all around the defense. They can’t seem to stop anyone, and the tight end position is no different as they are giving up the third most points to opposing TEs. If Big Ben and HEEAAAATTTH can continue on the same page, he should notch himself nicely into the TE1 category very soon.
There are only two teams on the bye this week, which is good for each of you as it means most of your starters are ready to go in Week 5. However, that doesn’t mean you will be free and clear moving forward. Although the waiver wire is thin, it certainly has a nice group of players that can help any team from the 0 – 4s to the 4 – 0s. Make sure you comb through the wire this week and set your self up for future success if not success in Week 5.
As always check me out on Twitter, as I will be answering start/sit questions right up until game time @JustinMandaro.