Friday - Oct 23, 2020

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WAIVER WIRE WONDERS: Week 5

The more things change, the more things change. With four weeks now in the books, the quarter pole of sorts, we now have a pretty good idea about most teams in the NFL. This past week marked a week of change for some, while others continue on a path they have begun in the previous three weeks. Teams that changed their destiny for the better include New England, Tennessee and Chicago. Those that were up that are starting to sink include Miami, Minnesota and Pittsburgh. In the “they are who we thought they were club” include the New York Giants, New York Jets and Cleveland. Woe is Cleveland, if not for a few unlucky plays the team might be 3-1 or even 4-0, missing out on closing out a win this week by an inch on a replay reversal.

These four weeks are a good barometer to the fantasy owner as well. There are probably some of you out there who can relate to Indianapolis coach Frank Reich, where it just seems that every lineup decision ends up being wrong. Or you might be Mike Vrabel, where every chance that you take turns to gold. Choosing a starting lineup is all about risk and reward, minimizing risk while maximizing reward – not an easy task! Take a hard look at your roster, and if you are scoring points somewhere (even if it’s on the bench), then stay the course. If not, take a look and see if you can shake things up. There might be an owner sitting a 0-4 looking to do something drastic. Be proactive and be willing to deal.

For this week’s wonders, we are melding everyone into a single group. There is not a lot to get too excited about, and with a few injuries around the league, we will list as many as possible in an “On The Radar” category. Something for everyone in this week’s story. Happy hunting!

“On The Radar”

WR Keke Coutee, Houston

This week’s top recommended add is a rookie that made his NFL debut this past week. My close to namesake, Keke Coutee. On a day where he was targeted a whopping 15 times, Coutee hauled in 11 of those passes on his way to 109 yards in receiving. The Houston coaching staff is extremely excited for the exciting rookie, and he is clearly already a favorite target of Deshaun Watson. He is on a path to become a regular fantasy contributor.

RB Mike Davis, Seattle

When a running back rushes for more than 100 yards while scoring two touchdowns, that is usually enough to light the lamp for our highest category. Unfortunately, the situation in Seattle changes from week to week where coach Pete Carroll often can turn last week’s top runner into the current week’s backup who hardly sees the field. There are many options for Seattle, and last week Davis was obviously solid. We like him as a grab-and-hold to see if the coaching staff is willing to give him a heavy dose of the rock in back to back weeks.

WR Dede Westbrook, Jacksonville

He has been a consistent performer for Jacksonville, and he threw up another flare for the fantasy owners to enjoy with a nine-catch performance against the New York Jets that was good for 130 yards. With the Jacksonville rushing attack missing Leonard Fournette, the passing game is filling in the gaps. Westbrook is worth a look as Jacksonville has favorable passing matchups the upcoming few weeks.

WR Taylor Gabriel, Chicago

The Chicago passing offense really exploded this past week as Mitch Trubisky, perhaps angered at not being mentioned in last week’s quarterback discussion in this space, threw six touchdown passes. We do not expect that on a weekly basis, but one player that continues on a rising path of production is Taylor Gabriel. With 15 catches on his résumé in the first three games, he caught seven passes against Tampa Bay. Two of those went for scores as he rang up 114 yards in total offense. He is worth a look in all formats.

TE Vance McDonald, Pittsburgh

Backing up a 100-plus yard effort in Week 3, McDonald had another strong game this past week against Baltimore. Again an active offensive target, he hauled in five catches for 62 yards. For those in need at the position, McDonald is a nice find on this week’s waiver wire.

QB Jameis Winston, Tampa Bay

Hopefully many of you were able to get in on Ryan Fitzpatrick early to enjoy the three weeks of 400-plus yards he threw for to open up the season. Like a penny stock, Fitzpatrick has flamed out to be replaced by Winston. Tampa Bay will have the bye week to re-adjust the offense around Winston, so grab him and enjoy stats that will make him a viable backup and bye week fill in.

TE Charles Clay, Buffalo

There were high hopes coming into this season that Clay was going to be a steady fantasy producer. The situation at quarterback has slowed things, but a week where he caught four passes for 40 yards gets him listed in this week’s story as on the radar. With other tight ends going down, Clay is worth a look as a backup to your backup.

WR Donte Moncrief, Jacksonville

Rare is the occasion where we mention a second wideout from the same team, but in this instance it is warranted. Behind Dede Westbrook, Moncrief is seeing the second most targets in Jacksonville. This past week against the New York Jets he caught five passes for 109 yards, one of which went for a touchdown. These two players for Jacksonville are making some noise, and worth a look to the fantasy owner who is in need at the position.

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About Doug Coutts

Doug has been with Fantasysharks.com since the very beginning. He is a Senior Fantasy Football Staff Writer and a member of the Fantasy Sports Writer Association (FSWA). Way back when, there was the Dynasty Den, Just Thinking Out Loud, and the Weekly Wrap-up. Along the way were television appearances on the local cable affiliate, and various other contributions. His weekly "Waiver Wire Wonders" column appears on Tuesdays.