Each week our gaggle of Yahoo fanalysts show their hands and reveal their top booms, busts and breakouts. Gaze into the crystal ball and list your picks, using the strict rules set, in the comment section below.
Among players under 50 percent started in Yahoo leagues, the loudest BOOM from Week 6 comes from ________.
Andy – Find a way to get JERMAINE KEARSE in your lineups, if possible. He’s facing New England this week, the league’s worst pass defense (by far). The Pats have allowed 323 passing yards per game, 195 of which are going to wide receivers. Kearse is almost guaranteed a respectable yardage total this week, and he’s already made three house calls. Expect a fourth spike this week.
Brad – CHRIS THOMPSON. Always passed over for the likes of Theo Riddick and various other pass-catching backs on draft day, Thompson has emerged as the Cadillac of the class. Though he’s seen just 32.5 percent of the opportunity share, he’s tallied the fourth-best fantasy points per opportunity (1.85) among rushers. With Rob Kelley a long shot to suit up, it’s a strong likelihood Thompson nets 12-14 touches against a generous Niners defense yielding 7.0 receptions and 60 receiving yards per game to RBs. Roughly 80-90 combined yards with a TD is well within reach.
Scott — The Jets defense hasn’t been the sieve most expected, but the linebackers struggle to cover pass-catching running backs. This sets up well for JAMES WHITE, New England’s pass-catching maestro. White has games with 10, 8 and 7 catches over his last four starts, and he’s scored in two of three games in the Pats-Jets series. New England is all about trust and reliability with the passing options, and White brings those qualities every week. (I’ll also use Elijah McGuire in the same game if Matt Forte is ruled out.)
Conversely, among players started in over 50 percent of Yahoo leagues, the biggest Week 6 BUST will be ______.
Brad – LAMAR MILLER. Merely typing the words “stout” and “Cleveland run defense” in the same sentence is utterly bizarre. This century the Browns have been one of the greatest gifts a running back could receive. But Myles Garrett, Danny Shelton and their teammates have shed their historic image, plugging gaps with considerable ferocity. On the season, the Browns have surrendered a lowly 2.95 yards per carry and the 10th fewest fantasy points to RBs. Miller has dominated the opportunity share, but a flavorless output around 80 total yards without a score is very possible.
Scott — STEFON DIGGS stands as the No. 4 receiver this year, one of the clear “right answers” of the season. But how likely is he to sustain things? Diggs did almost nothing in Week 5, held back by a groin injury, and although he’s hoping to play through the ailment, he has a poor track record of producing at less than 100 percent (hat tip, Graham Barfield). Lower your expectations for Diggs against Green Bay, and consider him a hard pass in DFS.
Andy – MIKE EVANS is going to produce plenty of useful fantasy lines this season, but I’m not banking on it happening this week, not with Patrick Peterson on the schedule. Peterson has already silenced TY Hilton, Alshon Jeffery and Dez Bryant this season. On the rare plays in which he allows a reception, he’s allowed next-to-nothin’ after the catch. If you can simply get a WR3-ish week from Evans, consider it a success.
Chuck a Hail Mary, the one deep player (under 15% started) you believe BREAKS OUT in Week 6 is ______.
Scott – JUJU SMITH-SCHUSTER has scored in two of his last four games, and he’s out-snapped Martavis Bryant in three straight weeks. I completely understand the concern tied to Ben Roethlisberger, but outlier performances (good and bad) have to be kept in perspective. The undefeated start from the Chiefs belies an ordinary defense; KC ranks merely 19th in defensive DVOA, and 14th in pass defense.
Andy – A.J. DERBY had a big game for Denver before the team’s bye (4-75-1), and he gets the best possible matchup for a tight end in Week 6. So far this season, the Giants have somehow allowed six tight ends to produce top-12 fantasy performances against them in only five games. New York has given up the second-most receptions to the position (34), the most receiving yards (374) and, of course, the most touchdowns (6). Derby is a layup start this week.
Brad — KEVIN HOGAN. A drug test may be required for making such a declaration, but I firmly believe Hogan cracks the QB top-10 this week. He’s a legitimate dual threat who often plays with reckless abandon (10.2 ypa last week). Against a ghost-pepper hot Texans offense spearheaded by Deshaun Watson, Hogan should be thrust into a high-volume situation. Throw in how depleted Houston is defensively, my claim doesn’t seem that outrageous. Expect 200-plus passing yards, multiple TDs and 50-plus rushing yards from the freshly elevated backup.