The name of the game in fantasy football is volume. That's why it's so important to take note of which wide receivers are seeing a significant target market share and how the each team splits up its backfield opportunities. Each week, Matt Harmon and Matt Franciscovich will break down the week's wide receiver targets and backfield touches leaders with takeaways you can use for your fantasy football teams going forward. We won't bore you with any more introductory comments here, let's dig into the good stuff from Week 5.
*NOTE: This article will be updated with data from the Sunday Night and Monday Night games the following day, so check back for more information as games wrap.
Touches: 10 | Carries: 1 | Receptions: 9
If we're being honest, Chris Johnson tied Andre Ellington for the backfield touches lead with 10. But Johnson had just 21 rush yards on his nine carries, and is barely fantasy-relevant at this point. Ellington, saw double-digit targets again and led the Cardinals with nine receptions. Despite the fact that he only rushed once for negative two yards, Ellington is the player you want to own, and at this point is a weekly flex starter in PPR formats given his volume. Arizona gets the Buccaneers at home next week.
Target share: 22.7% |Targets: 10 | Receptions: 6 | Yards: 51
Target share: 22.7% |Targets: 10 | Receptions: 9 | Yards: 65
Larry Fitzgerald is averaging 10.2 targets per game and hit double-digits in three of the five weeks this season. However, he hit just 51 yards on six catches. Fitzgerald averaged just 5.3 air yards per target today, essentially negating any usage in the deep game. With that sort of deployment, he essentially must hit a big play in the red zone or after the catch to access a fantasy ceiling. If he cannot, he remains a mere PPR floor play, albeit an incredibly reliable one.
Honorable mention(s): It looks like John Brown is back in place as the No. 2 wide receiver, as long as his health cooperates. Brown was on the field for 80 percent of the team's plays compared to 60 percent for Jaron Brown and 53 percent for J.J. Nelson. Brown drew seven targets, averaged over 18 air yards per target and found the end zone.
Touches: 25 | Carries: 21 | Receptions: 4
A Javorius Allen start in fantasy finally paid off, after a few weeks of hype and disappointment by fantasy analysts. The opportunity had been there the last few games, but the production hadn't. Buck broke through against the Raiders with 73 rush yards on his 21 carries, plus a goal-line score. He added 12 yards on four receptions. Going forward, Allen is the Ravens' back you want to be starting in fantasy and he brings some upside in PPR formats with his pass-catching prowess. He played 71 percent of Baltimore's snaps. He faces the Bears next week.
Honorable mention(s):Alex Collins came in to spell Allen and totaled 12 carries for 55 rush yards. He's the secondary piece in this backfield, but has been efficient with his opportunities for a few weeks in a row now. Still, he's just a bench stash in deeper leagues. Terrance West was carted off early in the first quarter with a calf injury after just two carries for 17 yards.
Target share: 30.8% |Targets: 8 | Receptions: 6 | Yards: 43
Jeremy Maclin saw a season-high eight targets today but only totaled 43 yards. With the Ravens employing a heavy run-focused approach, there just aren't many scraps to pick from the table for Maclin or his receiving compatriots. So far this season, Maclin has yet to cross 60 yards receiving and averaged fewer than 10 yards per reception in all but one game this year. It took a run after catch play on a busted coverage in Week 1 to accomplish that feat all the way back in Week 1.
Honorable mention(s):Mike Wallace hit multiple big plays and hauled in all three of his targets for a whopping 133 yards, but he's still a completely untrustworthy fantasy asset. Outside of a 10-target explosion against Pittsburgh last week, Wallace averages just three targets per game. His yardage total today nearly doubled his season-total (76) coming into Week 5.
Touches: 25 | Carries: 19 | Receptions: 6
LeSean McCoy led the Bills in rushing and receptions, which wasn't a surprise given tight end Charles Clay's early exit due to injury. Shady ground out a tough 89 yards from scrimmage against Cincy's defense in a game that was close the entire way. In a weird set of early games for running backs, McCoy's 8.9 standard points were enough to rank him as a top-10 play when the late games kicked-off. Buffalo has a bye next week, so McCoy owners will need to find running back production elsewhere.
Target share: 25.7% |Targets: 9 | Receptions: 6 | Yards: 26
LeSean McCoy is on pace for 86 catches this season. With injuries mounting in the pass-catching corps, it's hard to imagine him ceding the top spot on the target totem pole. Top receiver Zay Jones continued to struggle, catching just one pass on six targets today. The rookie has all the opportunity in the world on his plate but just cannot convert.
Honorable mention(s):Charles Clay suffered what appeared to be a severe injury during this game. He was one of the rocks of the tight end position this season but now looks like the Bills will be without his services for multiple games. With Clay out of the picture, Nick O'Leary played on 84 percent of the team's plays and converted quarterback Logan Thomas went out for 28 percent. O'Leary caught five passes to one from Thomas.
Touches: 21 | Carries: 18 | Receptions: 3
The Panthers offense kept rolling against the Lions in Week 5, but Jonathan Stewart didn't benefit from it. He totaled just 21 rush yards on 18 carries, a 1.16 yards per carry average. He either lost yards or gained zero on nine of his rush attempts. Outside of Stewart's Week 1 game in which he scored a receiving touchdown, he has not been a valuable fantasy asset despite the solid workload (77 carries through five games).
Honorable mention(s): FINALLY. Christian McCaffrey found the end zone for the first time as a pro, on a creative shovel pass play call from the Panthers. Cam Newton dumped it off to his electric back, and the rookie did the rest. McCaffrey only had three rush attempts but hauled in five of his seven receptions for 31 yards and the score. In a week where running back touchdowns have been rare, McCaffrey was a top 10 option by Sunday afternoon with his 9.8 standard points. Carolina has a short week, and plays Philadelphia on Thursday night to start Week 6.
Target share: 24.2% |Targets: 8 | Receptions: 7 | Yards: 53, TD
Devin Funchess' breakout season continues to roll on. He snagged his third touchdown of the season against the Lions. Funchess has target totals of 10, nine and eight in the three games since Greg Olsen went down with a foot injury. He's an every-week option at wide receiver with Cam Newton playing at an elite level the last two weeks. Kelvin Benjamin still got his with a deep passing touchdown.
Honorable mention(s):Ed Dickson was the story of the passing game today. He posted a career-high 175 yards and caught all five of his target. Dickson likely does not replicate this performance again and at best will be a streaky streamer. Yet, he was on the field for every single offensive play the Panthers ran against the Lions. If Newton's individual play holds up at this level, a tight end seeing that much playing time a high-octane offense is more than viable.
Touches: 19 | Carries: 19 | Receptions: 0
No surprise that Jordan Howard was the Bears lead rusher on Monday night, and he struggled with efficiency against a strong Vikings defense. With the game close the entire way, Howard got volume all the way, but did little with it gaining just 76 rush yards and he failed to find the end zone. It still seems like he's toughing out a shoulder injury as he came off the field favoring his arm at one point in the second half, but returned a few plays later. Hopefully, Mitchell Trubisky can move the Bears offense better than Mike Glennon could in more favorable matchups, which would lead to more goal-line looks for Howard, but this was a tough one. Howard remains a volume-upside high-end RB2.
Honorable mention(s):Tarik Cohen's usage was limited for the second straight game, which is kind of mind boggling when you consider how explosive he is in space. He had just seven touches netting six yards from scrimmage. Benny Cunningham also roatated in and ended up scoring a receiving touchdown on a fake punt, helping absolutely no one. If Howard were to miss time, it seems like Cunningham would be the favorite for the volume role.
Touches: 15 | Carries: 15 | Receptions: 0
If it wasn't clear heading into Week 5, it is now. Joe Mixon is the clear-cut primary back for Cincinnati and Jeremy Hill is being phased out of the offensive game plan under Bill Lazor. The rookie scored his first career NFL touchdown in the fourth quarter against a Bills defense that had only allowed two rushing scores heading into the game. Mixon's yardage totals haven't been great, but his usage and the upward trend of the Bengals offense overall is promising going forward. The Bengals will take Week 6 off with a bye.
Target share: 38.2% |Targets: 13 | Receptions:7 | Yards: 189, TD
A.J. Green is on absolute fire right now coming off his third straight game with a touchdown. With 33 targets since Bill Lazor took over as offensive coordinator, he's officially an elite fantasy receiver. With players like Tyler Eifert suffering injuries, Green appears set to operate as a funnel receiver all season.
Honorable mention(s):Tyler Kroft predictably came back down to earth following a two-touchdown game against the Browns last week. However, he was still on the field for 94 percent of the team's plays and drew five targets. With that type of usage, he can remain on the streaming radar if Eifert is still hurt coming out of the team's Week 6 bye.
Touches: 18 | Carries: 16 | Receptions: 2
In a home game that remained tight for most of the way, Isaiah Crowell had his highest rushing total of the season with 60 yards on his 16 carries. The Browns made a change at quarterback after halftime subbing in Kevin Hogan for DeShone Kizer, and it seemed the offense moved better with Hogan under center. The volume for Crowell was nice after a few weeks of lower usage but his efficiency, just 3.75 yards per carry, remains a concern going forward. He's still not a drop but will be tough to trust against the Texans in Week 6.
Honorable mention(s): DUKE JOHNSON just keeps on rolling! He scored a touchdown for the third straight game, this time on a screen pass for 41 yards, juking and jiving his way to the paint. He totaled 83 yards on just nine touches and at the start of the late Sunday games, Johnson stood as the RB4 in standard scoring.
Target share: 22.2% |Targets: 8 | Receptions: 5 | Yards: 71
The Browns "top receiver" Kenny Britt was out with a knee injury, so Ricardo Louis stepped up to assume the leading spot in the passing game. He was the only wideout to go out for more than 60 percent of the team's offensive plays. The Browns wide receiver group is looking like something of a roulette wheel that is best not to make any plans around.
Honorable mention(s): Rookie David Njoku scored his third NFL touchdown but was still on the field for less than 50 percent of the team's plays. Cleveland continues to split the tight end work three ways with Njoku, Seth DeValve (49 percent) and Randall Telfer (44 percent) all maintaining almost equal playing timeshares. Njoku keeps scoring touchdowns, but has no projectable floor until he fully overtakes the snap count.
Touches: 30 | Carries: 29 | Receptions: 1
Zeke did pretty much everything except find the end zone against the Packers on Sunday. He rushed for 116 yards on 29 carries and caught one pass for 16 yards. He's obviously a weekly must-start as Dallas' bell cow and as long as he's on the field, he's going to produce. He won't be on the field next week, as Dallas gets their bye week off.
Target share: 27.8% |Targets: 10 | Receptions: 8 | Yards: 61
Jason Witten popped back up for a big game after combining for six targets in Weeks 3 and 4. In the other three games, he collected 32 targets. It's clear that in shootouts, good matchups and negative game scripts that Witten has potential for usable weeks, but there's no reliable floor. It was just last week that Witten posted a single catch in a game with over 60 total points.
Honorable mention(s):Cole Beasley snagged two touchdowns but still only saw six targets and was on the field for just 49 percent of the team's plays. He doesn't not have a carved-out role that projects well for fantasy despite the scores.
Touches: 11 | Carries: 10 | Receptions: 1
The Lions backfield had a tough task in Week 5 going up a Carolina defense that has been a top-five unit in limiting opposing fantasy backs this season. And with the Panthers eventually getting out to a big lead, Ameer Abdullah finished with just 10 rush attempts for 31 yards, touching the ball just three times in the second half. Theo Riddick finished with six total touches, four of them receptions, for 53 yards from scrimmage.
Honorable mention(s): In true vulture fashion, the Lions put Zach Zenner in on the 1-yard line in the second quarter. Of course, he scored the short-yardage touchdown. Zenner had just three carries the entire game. Abdullah has a good chance to get back on track next week when the Lions head to New Orleans.
Target share: 22.9% |Targets: 8 | Receptions: 6 | Yards: 54
Target share: 22.9% |Targets: 8 | Receptions: 5 | Yards: 48
Green Bay Packers
Touches: 20 | Carries: 19 | Receptions: 1
With Ty Montgomery on the shelf, the Packers rolled with rookie Aaron Jones as their feature back against the Cowboys in Week 5. Safe to say he was solid, rushing for 125 yards on his 19 carries and scored a touchdown to boot. There's no reason for the Packers to pivot to a guy like Jamaal Williams with Jones running as the hot hand. As long as this keeps up, he'll be one of the more valuable waiver pickups of the first half. The Packers run into the Vikings next week though, so temper expectations.
Honorable mention(s): Williams had one carry for one yard. He's not worth owning for now. It's worth keeping an eye on Montgomery's timetable, but it sounds like he may miss another game at the very least.
Target share: 39.3% |Targets: 11 | Receptions: 7 | Yards: 66, 2 TDs
Unbelievably, Davante Adams came back after a frightening Week 4 hit on Thursday night to dominate in this contest against Dallas. Adams is pacing for 124.8 targets on the season, right in range with his 2016 output. He's been volatile and prone to spike-weeks amid some slower outings, which was exactly the type of player he was last season. Not much has changed for the fourth-year wideout since his rebound campaign.
Honorable mention(s):Jordy Nelson didn't draw a target in the first half but eventually scored a touchdown on one of his two catches. The veteran wideout wasn't present during Green Bay's two-minute game-winning drive against Dallas but was not slapped with an injury postgame. It's a bit of a confusing situation but there's no reason to sound any panic alarms until more information comes in.
Touches: 17 | Carries: 15 | Receptions: 2
Lamar Miller remains the primary back for the Texans, which is not a surprise after his solid Week 4 outing. He played a season-high 87 percent of the team's snaps against the Chiefs but only managed 74 rush yards on his 15 totes. It was a game-script deal here, as the Texans fell behind in the second half and Deshaun Watson was pretty much YOLO-balling for the final two quarters. Watson's strong play has elevated the entire Houston offense, and Miller is a buy-low candidate with matchups against Cleveland and Indianapolis upcoming in the next few weeks.
Honorable mention(s):D'Onta Foreman had just four carries for 34 yards in Week 5 and added one reception for three yards. He remains a bench stash for now, but a lost fumble doesn't help his cause for more work going forward. Still, Foreman would have immense value should Miller suffer an injury.
Target share: 41.4% |Targets: 12 | Receptions: 4 | Yards: 52, 3 TDs
DeAndre Hopkins continues his 190-plus target pace by collecting 12 on Sunday night. He had just one catch (a six-yard touchdown) through the first two quarters but came alive late in the contest as Deshaun Watson took to the air with reckless abandon with his team out of range for a win. Hopkins has a tremendous floor with the volume he's seeing.
Honorable mention(s): No. 2 and No. 3 receivers Will Fuller and Bruce Ellington were on the field for 93 and 85 percent of the team's plays against the Chiefs. Each garnered just three targets. Neither player has the volume profile to be a predictable fantasy asset but Watson continues to raise the tide for all ships in this offense. Fuller with his big play ability, is at least worth the occasional dart throw.
Touches: 17 | Carries: 14 | Receptions: 3
Frank Gore got revenge on his former team, kind of. He totaled 86 yards on his 17 touches but failed to reach the end zone. Instead, it was rookie Marlon Mack who stood out from the Colts backfield with 91 rush yards on nine carries and a touchdown. Mack had been inactive with an injury for several weeks, but had a solid return and may have earned himself more work going forward. He'll likely be a top waiver add ahead of Week 6. The Colts play the Titans next week on Monday night.
Honorable mention(s):Robert Turbin had six touches for eight total yards. Mack is the best add behind Gore, who should have done enough to hold the primary role for now.
Target share: 27.3% |Targets: 9 | Receptions: 7 | Yards: 177
Without any clear indication of when we might expect Andrew Luck back, it's encouraging to see these sorts of games from T.Y. Hilton. Jacoby Brissett's aggressive style is a good fit for Hilton's deep ball skills. The backup quarterback led all Week 5 passers with a 13.1 intended air yards average on his throws. Brissett is proving viable enough to get the most out of Hilton when they go up against soft secondaries, which they will again in Week 6 in Tennessee.
Touches: 29 | Carries: 28 | Receptions: 1
Well folks, Leonard Fournette shredded the Steelers defense, and you can't say we didn't warn you. It was an ideal matchup for Fournette as the Steelers were having a tough time stopping running backs heading into the game, but he absolutely torched them. Fournette piled up 181 rushing yards and two touchdowns by the time the curtain closed on Sunday's game. His 90-yard touchdown sprint in the fourth quarter was the fastest speed clocked by a ball carrier this season, 22.05 mph, per Next Gen Stats. There's no other way to define Fournettes size/speed combination than "unfair" and the Steelers caught the brunt of it in Week 5. Please forgive me that I have failed to mention Fournette scored in his fifth straight game. This is exactly what the Jaguars wanted, too: Bortles attempted just 14 passes, their defense dominated, and Fournette carried the offense on his back. Look for more of the same next week when the Jaguars take on the Rams.
Honorable mention(s):Chris Ivory spelled Fournette with eight carries for 41 yards. He'd likely be the team's bell cow should anything happen to Fournette.
Target share: 28.6% |Targets: 4 | Receptions: 2 | Yards: 49
Jacksonville will 100 percent take this sort of passing performance any day from Blake Bortles, because it doesn't lose them the game. Leonard Fournette inhaled 28 carries and Bortles threw the ball just 14 times. A defensive-heavy team can win games like this when they tee-off on the opposing quarterbacks, but it won't bring much fantasy goodness for the receivers.
Honorable mention(s): There really isn't much more to say here.
Kansas City Chiefs
Touches: 32 | Carries: 29 | Receptions: 3
With his third-straight hundred-yard rushing performance against Houston, Kareem Hunt maintained his status as the highest scoring running back in fantasy football through five weeks. He had to grind it out on Sunday night, as he struggled early but eventually wore down the Texans defense (that was also plagued by injuries) late in the game. Unfortunately, he was vultured for touchdowns three times in the game and hasn't found the end zone now in two straight contests. Despite his scoring drought, Hunt still has six total scores this season, and will be a locked-in RB1 against the Steelers next week.
Honorable mention(s):Charcandrick West scored two receiving touchdowns Sunday night and now has three in his last two games. He's definitely a handcuff to Hunt, and is a frustrating thing that keeps happening to Hunt owners with these short-yardage scores. D'Antonthy Thomas also scored a short receiving touchdown in the game. Any of those three scores could easily have gone to Hunt. Very sad.
Target share: 30.6% |Targets: 11 | Receptions: 8 | Yards: 98
Travis Kelce led the team in targets despite missing stretches of this game with a concussion. He went out for just 51 percent of the team's plays in total. Outside of a Week 3 outlier where he posted just one catch for one yard on a single target against the Chargers, Kelce has target totals of seven, 10, eight and 11 thus far on the year. Usage doesn't get much more appealing at the tight end position than that.
Honorable mention(s): No. 2 and No. 3 receivers Chris Conley (Achilles) and Albert Wilson (leg) both suffered injuries in this game. Wilson escaped anything serious and was able to return to the game but Conley will miss the rest of the season. Conley was only averaging three targets per game so this doesn't create a massive vacuum in the passing game but should open up snaps for a player like Demarcus Robinson.
Los Angeles Chargers
Touches: 26 | Carries: 20 | Receptions: 6
It was a prime bounce-back spot for Melvin Gordon on Sunday against the Giants, and he came through. Gordon racked up 163 yards from scrimmage, 105 rushing and 58 through the air on his 26 touches, and scored two receiving touchdowns including the game-winner for the Chargers. He led his team in receptions with six and looked to be fully back to form following questions about a knee injury. He'll have a decent matchup next week at the Raiders and should remain in starting fantasy lineups.
Honorable mention(s):Austin Ekeler had four carries for zero yards. As long as Gordon is cooking, he faces no competition in this backfield.
Target share: 28.6% |Targets: 12 | Receptions: 4 | Yards: 67
Keenan Allen drew his usual beefy volume in Week 5 but didn't manage much production. He saw 50 percent of his targets on plays where he lined up in the slot. The Chargers appear to want him to split time between the inside and outside. With another double-digit target season, Allen is pacing for a 160-plus target finish. Few receivers have the projectable floor that the Chargers top receiver comes with.
Honorable mention(s): Given the strengths and weaknesses of the Giants defense, it's not surprising that exterior deep threats Tyrell Williams and Travis Benjamin weren't involved much today. The duo combined for just five targets. The Chargers targeted the middle areas of the New York stop unit with Allen drawing 12 targets, with Melvin Gordon and Hunter Henry both seeing eight.
Los Angeles Rams
Touches: 16 | Carries: 14 | Receptions: 2
Of course, it had to be the Seahawks who stalled out Todd Gurley's hot start to the 2017 season. It all started in an unfortunate way as Gurley got called on a review for fumbling the ball into the pylon on the Rams first drive on what looked to be a touchdown. But it was overturned and ended up as a touchback, giving the Seahawks the ball instead of six points on the board for Los Angeles. The Rams struggled on offense from there on out, and Gurley had just 43 yards on his 14 carries. He added seven yards through the air on two catches. He'll look to get going again next week against the Jaguars.
Honorable mention(s): Of course, this was the game that Tavon Austin of all players had to vulture a rushing touchdown. Because that makes all the sense in the world.
Target share: 17.4% |Targets: 8 | Receptions: 4 | Yards: 98
Target share: 17.4% |Targets: 8 | Receptions: 5 | Yards: 66
Target share: 17.4% |Targets: 8 | Receptions: 3 | Yards: 44
With no player crossing the 20 percent mark in the target share today, we got another reminder that the spotlight of the Rams offense will move from player to player on a weekly basis. Cooper Kupp tied for the team lead in targets and was on the field for 86 percent of the team's plays, more than any other wide receiver. Inches away from a much bigger game, Kupp let the game-winning touchdown slip through his fingertips in the end zone. Tyler Higbee is out-snapping rookie teammate Gerald Everett. He was on the field for 65 percent of the team's plays to just 35 for his counterpart.
Honorable mention(s):Sammy Watkins came out this week and indicated he was just fine with the Rams spreading the ball around. It's worth wondering if he feels the same way after a catch-less outing in this home loss. Watkins has just six targets and a single catch since his dominant Week 3 game against the 49ers.
Touches: 27 | Carries: 25 | Receptions: 2
There's no question that Jay Ajayi is the Dolphins workhorse. He's, unfortunately, a workhorse on an offense that simply cannot move the ball effectively with Jay Cutler under center. Ajayi totaled 77 rush yards on his 25 carries for a miserable 3.0 yards per rush average. It's been a rough few weeks for the Miami running back, who's posted three-straight single-digit outings in standard scoring, and a lost fumble didn't help his cause Sunday. Ajayi and the Dolphins offense will look to get back on track against the Falcons next week.
Target share: 39.5% |Targets: 10 | Receptions: 5 | Yards: 44, TD
In an effort to get their offense back on track, it was clear the Dolphins intended to turn back to the run game. Miami registered 28 carries for their running backs to 26 pass attempts for Jay Cutler. Jarvis Landry and Jay Ajayi were the only two players to catch more than one pass on the day. At some point, the Dolphins will need to consider going to Matt Moore. Cutler is holding this offense back.
Touches: 22 | Carries: 16 | Receptions: 6
In the Vikings first full game without Dalvin Cook (knee), we figured to see a lot of Latavius Murray with a bit of Jerrick McKinnon sprinkeld in. Well, things don't always go as planned, and McKinnon was the Minnesotta back who ended up carrying the load. On the heels of a 58-yard touchdown run in the third quarter, McKinnon racked up 95 rush yards and the score on his 16 attempts. He also lead the Vikings in receiving with 51 yards on six catches. If he wasn't already owned in your league, he needs to be after this performance.
Honorable mention(s): After gaining a solid eight yards on his first rush of the night, Latavius Murray fizzled out quickly and didn't gain more than four yards on another run the entire game. He finished with 31 rush yards on 12 carries, and looked much less explosive than McKinnon. The snap count went in McKinnon's favor as well as he topped Murray by a count of 44 to 22 against the Bears. Murray's nothing more than a deep league bench stash for now.
New England Patriots
Touches: 12 | Carries: 12 | Receptions: 0
Mike Gillislee rushed 12 times for 51 yards and averaged a respectable 4.3 yards per carry on Thursday night against the Buccaneers. Most of his work came in the first quarter, but since the game remained close, James White got a heavy dosage of work as a pass-catcher and was on the field for 30 snaps compared to Gillislee's 22. White hauled in seven of his nine targets in the game and once again was a solid flex play in PPR formats. Gillislee's value has suffered of late with the New England defense struggling and the offense having to keep pace. The Pats play the Jets next week, so it's a game Gillislee could bounce back in.
Honorable mention(s):Dion Lewis out-rushed Gillislee by a yard, taking his seven carried for 53 on the night, most of which came on a 31-yard scamper in the first quarter. Lewis played more of a change-of-pace role behind Gillislee, and his playing time, just 17 snaps, indicates that he's not worth rolling out in fantasy unless there's an injury in front of him.
Target share: 28.9% |Targets: 11 | Receptions: 8 | Yards: 74, TD
Chris Hogan now has five touchdowns since Week 2 and crossed 60 yards in every game. He's been the model of consistency and currently leads the Patriots with 37 targets. Even though Danny Amendola is back in the fold, Hogan caught seven of his eight passes from the slot. At this point, it's hard to consider him anything but a weekly must-play.
Honorable mention(s):Brandin Cooks has one monster game (7-131-2 TDs), a pair of 80 yarders and two with less than 40 yards. This sort of roller coaster is exactly what we grew to expect from the speedster during his days with the Saints. It's no surprise it carried over to New England. With Rob Gronkowski out, only three wideouts (Hogan, Cooks and Amendola) recorded a catch along with James White and Dion Lewis.
New York Giants
Touches: 16 | Carries: 11 | Receptions: 5
Wayne Gallman led the Giants backfield in touches against the Chargers and totaled 82 yards from scrimmage, but failed to find the end zone. He actually tied Odell Beckham Jr. for the team lead in receptions with five, but that likely had much to do with the fact that New York lost four of their top wideouts to injury during the course of the game. Shane Vereen had a few garbage-time touches late in the fourth quarter but was a non-factor otherwise.
Honorable mention(s):Orleans Darkwa, who returned after a few week absence due to injury, ended up being the fantasy standout in the Giants backfield. Darkwa had just eight rush attempts but totaled 69 yards on the ground and rushed for a touchdown. Gallman out-snapped him by a count of 25 to 20 (Vereen had 22). This backfield remains one of the most muddled in the league and should be avoided for fantasy purposes if possible. The Giants head to Denver in a tough matchup next Sunday night.
Target share: 22.2% |Targets: 8 | Receptions: 5 | Yards: 97, TD
Odell Beckham was right back to his elite production pace with 90 yards and/or a touchdown in each of his last three straight games. Unfortunately, the Giants lost their star receiver to a lower-body injury late in this game that will likely force him out for an extended stretch. New York's offense is in dire straits without Beckham in the picture.
Honorable mention(s): In addition to Beckham's injury, the Giants also lost Sterling Shepard, Dwayne Harris and Brandon Marshall to injuries in this game. It's not out of the question that the team goes into Denver in Week 6 with second-year undrafted wide receiver Roger Lewis as the top player on the depth chart.
New York Jets
Touches: 13 | Carries: 11 | Receptions: 2
In stark contrast to Week 4, the Jets backfield was not productive against the Browns on Sunday. Rookie Elijah McGuire led the team with his 20 rush yards on 11 carries. He added 10 receiving yards on two receptions, but overall was a complete bust for anyone with the guts to roll him out against Cleveland.
Honorable mention(s):Bilal Powell left the game early with a calf injury. He had just two carries for five yards and added 28 receiving yards on four receptions. Powell's injury is a major concern for the Jets, as Matt Forte was inactive again as well. It seems Week 4 was an outlier for this backfield, but we kind of knew that already. Fantasy managers should pay close attention to how this all plays out in the coming week, but still shouldn't expect a ton of production. The Jets play the Patriots in Week 6.
Target share: 26.7% |Targets: 8 | Receptions:68 | Yards: 29, TD
The usage for Austin Seferian-Jenkins coming into this week foretold a big game on the horizon. It wasn't a massive outing, but he led the team with six catches and scored a red zone touchdown. The Browns continue to roll over for the tight end position. While he won't put up this type of production on a weekly because of the offense he plays in, Seferian-Jenkins has TE1-style of usage. He's on the field for over 75 percent of the team's plays and consistently competes to lead the Jets in targets.
Touches: 13 | Carries: 12 | Receptions: 1
If Marshawn Lynch couldn't get it done in this game, it was time to be out on him as a fantasy asset. But he came through, albeit in a limited fashion, with 43 yards and a touchdown on his 12 carries, adding one catch for 10 yards. Even in a script where the Raiders fell behind early, Lynch had opportunities in the second half contrary to how the last two weeks had been. He scored his touchdown on a three-yard run in the third quarter. It was just enough to keep him around on fantasy squads for the time being. He'll face the Chargers next week and will be a low-end flex.
Target share: 32% |Targets: 8 | Receptions: 6 | Yards: 82, TD
EJ Manuel appeared to dial in on Michael Crabtree today, as the veteran receiver led the team with eight targets. The only other player who was close was tight end Jared Cook with six. Derek Carr was reportedly close to playing in this contest, so it may have just been a one week ride for Manuel. Yet, if we see him again next week against the Chargers, look for Crabtree to be the preferred option once again.
Honorable mention(s):Amari Cooper's nightmare season continues. Today was his third straight outing with single-digits in yardage. You can't drop a player like this but we need to see something, literally anything before starting him in fantasy again.
Touches: 14 | Carries: 14 | Receptions: 0
The Eagles jumped out to an early lead on the heels of a few Carson Wentz touchdown passes. They were up big in the second half which meant they were able to salt the clock away with LeGarrette Blount carries. He only had two touches in the first half, and the rest of his 12 carries were all in quarters three and four. A 37-yarder in the third helped his final line of 74 yards. He may find the sledding a bit tougher next week against Carolina on Thursday night.
Honorable mention(s): With Wendell Smallwood out due to an injury, Corey Clement saw some added opportunity. He had seven carries for 17 yards and was barely out-snapped by Blount by a count of 24 to 23. Kenjon Barner also got some action and rushed for 23 yards on his five attempts. If Smallwood remains out for an extended period, Clement could become a deep-league add.
Target share: 40% |Targets: 12 | Receptions:68 | Yards: 61, TD
Honorable mention(s):Carson Wentz threw four touchdowns today and none of them went to Alshon Jeffery, who saw a season-low four targets. Given his matchup with Patrick Peterson, it was easy to predict he'd be a letdown in this spot. However, Jeffrey has just one game with over 60 yards receiving and finished with under 40 three times. To say this is a slow start for Jeffrey with his new team is being kind.
Touches: 25 | Carries: 15 | Receptions: 10
Le'Veon Bell struggled to move the ball on the ground against the Jaguars, despite a heavy workload early. Bell finished with just 47 rushing yards on 15 carries. He did work as a receiver though and ended up tieing Antonio Brown for the team lead in receptions with 10 that he converted to 46 yards. On a day where he didn't find the end zone, Bell's fantasy owners will have to take 93 yards from scrimmage. He'll face Kansas City in Week 6.
Honorable mention(s):James Conner had three carries for nine yards and remains one of the most valuable handcuffs in fantasy, if you have the bench space.
Target share: 35.2% |Targets: 19 | Receptions: 10 | Yards: 157
Antonio Brown managed to absorb 19 targets amid a Ben Roethlisberger meltdown to post a strong stat line. With Pittsburgh forced into negative game script thanks to their quarterback's five turnovers, Brown managed to get the volume needed to overcome a painfully difficult cornerback matchup. It was one of the better individual duels in football between he and Jalen Ramsey.
Honorable mention(s):Martavis Bryant came into this contest questionable with an illness and his utilization was a bit different. He was already on the field less than JuJu Smith-Schuster in the two games prior to this and that remained the case against the Jaguars. However, he also averaged just 8.0 air yards per target, whereas he came in sporting a beefy 20-plus average. There seemed to be no interest in getting him involved in the deep game, which given his lack of practice and the cornerback matchups, wasn't too shocking.
San Francisco 49ers
Touches: 13 | Carries: 10 | Receptions: 3
For the first time this season, Matt Breida out-touched Carlos Hyde. Breida is probably available in a lot of fantasy leagues and is worth consideration on the waiver wire. He rushed 10 times for 49 yards and did some work as a pass-catcher with 22 yards on three receptions. Word from coach Kyle Shanahan is that he went with the dreaded "hot hand" approach, for what it's worth.
Honorable mention(s):Carlos Hyde totaled just 18 yards on nine touches, which is surprising given the matchup and the fact that the game was close enough that it went to overtime. But Brian Hoyer attempted 46 passes, so San Francisco was attacking via the pass, not the run. It's worth wondering if Hyde's hip injury had anything to do with his limited production. The fullback, Kyle Juszczyk made an appearnce and scored a receiving touchdown. The 49ers take on the Redskins in Week 6.
Target share: 24.4% |Targets: 11 | Receptions: 8 | Yards: 94
Target share: 24.4% |Targets: 11 | Receptions: 5 | Yards: 116
The top-two wide receivers for the 49ers spit duties atop the passing game pie this week. Pierre Garcon wasn't a surprise, he's maintained a healthy volume floor all season. The veteran receiver drew six of his 11 targets from right wide receiver and another three from the slot. San Francisco was able to keep him away from Vontae Davis for much of this game. Goodwin's big day was quite a bit more shocking. He was cleared from the concussion protocol for the contest and went out for 79 percent of the team's plays. Goodwin draws deep targets on such a routine basis that these sort of eruption games are always in the cards, albeit nearly impossible to pinpoint.
Touches: 10 each | Carries: Rawls: 8, Lacy: 9 | Receptions: Rawls: 2, Lacy: 1
All the hype about who would start at running back for Seattle was basically for naught. Thomas Rawls led with 20 rush yards while Eddie Lacy rushed for just 19. Clearly, it was not a good week to start any Seahawks running backs. The main takeaway is the snap count. Rawls saw 31 snaps, Lacy saw 19. If this trend continues, Rawls is the back to own and start or at least flex going forward. Seattle has a Week 6 bye, so maybe we'll get more clarity ahead of Week 7. Or maybe not, because it's the Seahawks and there never seems to be.
Honorable mention(s): After breaking out with two touchdowns last week, pass-catching back J.D. McKissic had two rush attempts for zero yards and three catches on five targets for 36 yards. This backfield is too crowded to safely rely on anyone. They'll have their weeks, but good luck picking them out.
Target share: 21.6% |Targets: 8 | Receptions: 6 | Yards: 37, TD
Target share: 21.6% |Targets: 8 | Receptions: 4 | Yards: 37
It was back to business as usual at the top of the Seahawks passing distribution with Doug Baldwin and Jimmy Graham operating the high castle. Neither boasted beefy yardage totals, as the Seahawks were unable to cultivate much of a downfield passing game. Wilson's completed passes traveled an average of just 4.7 yards in the air and his longest completion traveled just 34.2 yards in the air, the sixth-lowest mark from Sunday.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Touches: 14 | Carries: 13 | Receptions: 1
Doug Martin's season debut was a successful one. He looked fresh and aggressive running the ball, and created a few big gains for himself. Martin averaged 5.6 yards per carry with 74 yards on his 13 rush attempts, and scored a touchdown from one yard out, leaping over a pile of defenders. He looked like a veteran back who has something to prove, and was well worth stashing on your bench for four weeks. We should see his usage tick up in coming weeks as he gets integrated as the Bucs' feature back.
Honorable mention(s):Charles Sims and Jacquizz Rodgers worked in, but neither were effective as fantasy assets. Sims did have five receptions for just 31 receiving yards, while Quizz played just 12 snaps and had four touches. Jacquizz is now relegated to handcuff-only duty as long as Martin is healthy. The Buccaneers have a tough matchup on the road in Arizona in Week 6.
Target share: 20.5% |Targets: 9 | Receptions: 5 | Yards: 106
Target share: 20.5% |Targets: 9 | Receptions: 5 | Yards: 68, TD
DeSean Jackson is as volatile as ever. His two big games came against vulnerable individual matchups with the Vikings struggling at corner opposite Xavier Rhodes and the Patriots newly leaky defense. Jackson is in another good spot coming into Week 6 facing the Cardinals No. 2 cornerback Justin Bethel. Thursday night was the first time Cameron Brate out-snapped rookie O.J. Howard. He's looking like a safe weekly play with his targets going up every week (three, four, six, nine) and a touchdown in each of his last three games.
Honorable mention(s):Mike Evans still averages 9.8 targets per game despite a slow outing against New England. There's really no reason to panic on him.
Touches: 18 | Carries: 14 | Receptions: 4
With Matt Cassel starting under center for Tennessee, DeMarco Murray was fed early and often. He finished with 69 yards from scrimmage and lost a fumble. Still, Murray remains the clear-cut primary back over Derrick Henry and finally looks healthy after dealing with a hamstring injury early in the season. He'll be a low-end RB1 option against the Colts in Week 6.
Honorable mention(s):Derrick Henry rushed four times for nine yards. He'll take a backseat as long as Murray is healthy.
Target share: 19.4% |Targets: 6 | Receptions: 3 | Yards: 34
Target share: 19.4% |Targets: 6 | Receptions: 4 | Yards: 34
Honorable mention(s):Delanie Walker is averaging just 5.8 targets per game through five weeks. At this point, his volume is a major issue. Walker looks like a high-end streamer, right now, not an every-week lineup lock.
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