Matt Hicks & Adam McKay
Here we go: Start/Bench/Drop Week 5, where me and Adam take real scenarios from our leagues and explain which player we’d start, which we’d keep on our bench, and which we’d drop like they were hot. For more rules check out our Week 4 article. Alright, let’s jump right into it:
Alex Smith, Cam Newton, Eli Manning (Standard/Keeper)
Matt: Start Eli, Bench Smith, Cut Cam
This one is from one of my teams, and it’s a tough one. My heart says to keep Cam, but my mind says to cut him and never look back. For once, I’ll let my mind win. I believe that Eli has the most fantasy potential out of these 3. Last week Eli threw the ball 49 times…49 times, people. He’s going to keep throwing the ball and it’ll lead to good things so I’ll start him. I could never cut good guy Alex Smith. He’s always been my go to bench QB and I’m glad he’s finally getting recognition.
Adam: Start Smith, Bench Cam, Cut Eli
Cam Newton is like that girl that you know you should break up with but you convince yourself to stick around another week to see if she changes. Well, he’s not but I suppose it doesn’t hurt to wait one more week, right? Alex Smith has been almost matchup proof this season and this offense does an excellent job of game planning. I am skeptical of injuries to his interior line and this isn’t a particularly friendly Texans defensive line but I’d say still ride with Smith this week. If you haven’t dropped Eli yet, I’m sorry and that’s coming from a lifelong Giants fan.
DeMarco Murray, Lamar Miller, Duke Johnson Jr. (PPR/Redraft)
Matt: Start Miller, Bench Duke, Drop Murray
Miller has turned it around since Watson took over. He’s gotten at least 14 carries each week of the season, and started becoming involved in the passing game last week too. He’s scored at least 11 points 3 out of the 4 weeks. Murray just isn’t getting it done: 7 or less points in 3 out of 4 games. He’s rushed more than 45 yards just once this season, and isn’t involved in the passing game. Is Duke Johnson a RB or WR? Who cares, he’s in my starting line-up as the best RB AND WR in Cleveland.
Adam: Start Miller, Bench Duke, Drop Murray
I’m sad to agree with Matt here but Murray is definitely trending in the wrong direction. Derrick Henry is going to continue to take carries away and they’re basically at a 50/50 time share. Watson has certainly rejuvenated this run game and Miller has been relatively effective with his carries. I would start Miller this week simply because of the volume he has been getting over Duke. Duke does have a tasty matchup against a slow linebacking core but Miller is someone you can’t leave on the bench at this point.
Leonard Fournette, Kareem Hunt, Jordan Howard (PPR/Redraft)
Matt: Start Hunt, Bench LF, Drop Howard
This one comes from our Follower’s League. In this very tough situation I’d have to start Hunt. He’s got to come down from his fantasy high at some point, but I’m not benching him until he does. These next two are close but I’m taking Fournette over Howard; they’re both high volume backs in bad offenses but Fournette seems to have a more consistent workload and has at least 1 TD in every game this season (1 rushing, 3 receiving).
Adam: Start Fournette, Bench Hunt, Drop Howard
This is tough because Kareem Hunt is seemingly matchup proof and may just be the best running back in the league right now. However, this particular matchup is going to be one of his biggest challenges against a stout Texans front seven as well as a depleted O-line. I’m probably higher on Fournette than most but it’s definitely justifiable. He’s been very good and he will get his against Pittsburgh. Sorry Jordan Howard, you’re the odd man out but simply because the other options are that good.
P.S. I love this question because I have both Fournette and Hunt in one league. I also have Cam Newton and Isaiah Crowell in another. Man, the highs are high and the lows are low.
P.P.S. Adam won’t trade me Fournette in said keeper league and it’s frustrating. Come on man, throw me a bone.
Marvin Jones, Kendall Wright, Tyrell Williams (PPR/Keeper)
Matt: Start Jones, Bench Wright, Cut Williams
This is, unfortunately also a scenario I have this week (thanks to byes). I like Wright a lot moving forward. He’s been getting more and more action in a depleted WR corp. and he could benefit from Trubisky, especially in PPR formats. That being said, I don’t like the match-up vs the Viking so I’ll go with Jones. I’m only going with Jones because Stafford is his QB so he always has huge upside potential. Tyrell had a good performance last week but don’t be a prisoner of the moment; he’s not that good.
Adam: Start Williams, Bench Wright, Cut Jones
I love me some Tyrell Williams. Every time I watch a Tyrell, it looks like a gazelle snuck onto the field somehow. I also love this nice match-up against a Giants secondary that has faced some attrition this year to say the least. I could see a situation where Eli Apple has trouble dealing with Williams’ speed and a big TD certainly isn’t out of the question. Wright has shown some value in PPR formats and he will serve as a nice safety valve for Trubisky moving forward, but not against Minnesota. Marvin Jones might be the fourth option in this Lions pass game so it won’t be that painful to move on.