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Week 5 Busts? Players To Consider Avoiding


A quarter of the season is in the books. So what have we learned? The Dolphins are by far the worst team in the NFL and could lose all 16 games, but the Redskins aren't far behind and are turning to Colt McCoy at quarterback. The undefeated Chiefs, as expected, have the best offense in the NFL, but their defense is a clear weakness. The Patriots (also 4-0) have one of the best defenses in the league, but their offense isn't as good as you think it is. They could get exposed once their schedule toughens.

The Bucs made a statement by scoring almost 60 points to beat the Rams in Week 4. Maybe their offense under Bruce Arians will do special things when all is said and done. The Saints can still win without Drew Brees, but it might not be pretty. The NFC North is easily the best division in football, and the Lions look like they're for real. The Vikings should probably listen to Adam Thielen and throw the ball more.

Below are 10 potential busts for Week 5 of the 2019 fantasy football season.

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Potential Quarterback Busts for Week 5

Philip Rivers - Los Angeles Chargers Vs. Broncos

Rivers has gone over 300 yards passing in three of four games and ranks fourth in the NFL with 1,254 yards. He's thrown seven touchdowns and two interceptions. But most of his receivers are hurt minus Keenan Allen, and running back Melvin Gordon will have a role after being active yet not playing a single snap against Miami.

While both Gordon and Austin Ekeler are savvy at catching the football, this could be a contest where the Bolts get out to an early lead and ride the ground game in the second half. Denver's defense just lost pass-rusher Bradley Chubb (knee) for the season, but they're allowing the second fewest fantasy points per game (14.6) to QBs. Cornerback Chris Harris Jr. could be asked to shadow Allen.

Aaron Rodgers - Green Bay Packers @ Cowboys

Rodgers had his best game in Week 4 by throwing for 422 yards on a season-high 53 attempts to beat the Eagles last Thursday. But he was facing an extremely thin Philly secondary. Rodgers is completing just 62.3% of his passes and will be without his top target in Davante Adams (toe). He ranks an un-Rodgers like 14th in total passing yards (1,069). Dallas' defense allows the fifth fewest fantasy points per game (16.3) to the position.

Others: Dak Prescott (Vs. Packers), Marcus Mariota (Vs. Bills)

 

Potential Running Back Busts for Week 5

Marlon Mack - Indianapolis Colts @ Chiefs

Kansas City will put up a lot of points. It's inevitable. If Mack even plays -- he's missed practice this week with an ankle injury -- he could face negative game script. Because he's not involved in the passing game -- just six targets in four games, two of which he wasn't targeted at all -- Mack is volatile in games in which the Colts are playing catch-up. On top of it, his injury could force the Colts to use more of Jordan Wilkins and Nyheim Hines.

Le'Veon Bell - New York Jets @ Eagles

Sam Darnold (mononucleosis) has been ruled out for Week 5. In Week 3 with third-stringer Luke Falk under center, Bell averaged 1.9 yards per carry and had a season-low four targets in the passing game. Bell isn't exactly tearing it up on the ground in three games either, running for a measly 2.9 YPC on 56 attempts. Remember, he sat out all of 2018, so he may be shaking off the rust.

Like the Pats in Week 3, Philadelphia's defensive front is good at shutting down an opponent's running game, allowing the fourth fewest fantasy points per game (13.1) to the position. However, they have allowed the sixth most receptions (27) to running backs. Bell's floor will be lower than normal until Darnold returns from his illness.

Josh Jacobs - Oakland Raiders Vs. Bears (in London)

The rookie has posted an impressive 5.0 yards per carry through four games. But if the Raiders are behind on the scoreboard, Jacobs loses snaps to Jalen Richard and Deandre Washington. In Oakland's two wins, Jacobs has 40 carries. In their two losses, he has 22. The Alabama alum is tied for 57th in the NFL with just five targets in the passing game.

Not only is Jacobs' role game-script dependent, but he'll face the toughest defense he's seen yet in the Bears. Chicago is allowing the fifth fewest fantasy points per game (13.3) to running backs and just one rushing TD. When the rookie saw a similar defense in the Vikings, he rushed a season-low 10 times for 44 yards. Expect the Bears to stack the box and force Derek Carr to beat them across the pond.

Others: James Conner (Vs. Ravens), LeSean McCoy (Vs. Colts), Melvin Gordon (Vs. Broncos)

 

Potential Wide Receiver Busts for Week 5

Amari Cooper - Dallas Cowboys Vs. Packers

Cooper went without a score for the first time in Week 4 while being covered by Marshon Lattimore. In Week 5 he'll match up against Packers cornerback Jaire Alexander, which is another tough draw. Dak Prescott ranks 20th in the NFL with only 127 attempts, and Cooper has yet to see double-digit targets in a single week, which is rare for a No. 1 receiver. Green Bay's D has been stingy, allowing the second fewest fantasy points per game (14.5) to opposing wideouts.

JuJu Smith-Schuster - Pittsburgh Steelers Vs. Ravens

Once Ben Roethlisberger (elbow) was lost for the season, Smith-Schuster pretty much went from being a WR1 to a WR2 in fantasy. Mason Rudolph isn't terrible, but he's not taking many downfield shots, and Smith-Schuster has seen his targets drop from eight the first two weeks to seven in Week 3 and only four last Monday night.

Baltimore's defense has been a disappointment, but you can't say that about cornerback Marlon Humphrey, who shut down Odell Beckham Jr. last week. Expect Humphrey to lock horns with a potentially limited Smith-Schuster; he's missed practice time this week with a toe ailment. The Steelers should lean on their running backs again against a Ravens Defense that was gashed by Nick Chubb for 165 yards and three touchdowns on the ground in Week 4.

Tyrell Williams - Oakland Raiders Vs. Bears (in London)

Believe it or not, Williams is the only receiver to have a touchdown in all four games in 2019. But aside from his 105-yard Week 1, the 27-year-old first-year Raider has yardage totals of 46, 29 and 36. He's caught only three passes each of the last two weeks. Not only has Williams been battling a foot injury this week, but the Bears Defense is one of the best in the league. The British faithful aren't likely to be treated to an offensive explosion this weekend. We'd bet on Williams staying out of the end zone for the first time this year.

Others: John Brown (@ Titans), D.J. Chark (@ Panthers), Jarvis Landry (@ 49ers)

 

Potential Tight End Busts for Week 5

Austin Hooper - Atlanta Falcons (@ Texans)

As a tight end, it'd be hard not to be a disappointment a week after posting nine receptions for 130 yards, even if you're Travis Kelce. That's what Hooper did in a loss to the Titans, but the Texans allow the fewest fantasy points per game (2.4) to tight ends. Hooper's 11 targets in Week 4 were nice and there's no denying he's become a bigger part of the offense, but temper expectations.

Mark Andrews - Baltimore Ravens (@ Steelers)

Andrews ranks sixth in the NFL among tight ends with 32 targets and has scored in three of four games. The difference between Andrews and the five TEs ahead of him on that list is that he's played under 50% of the offensive snaps in half of Baltimore's games. In the other two games he's barely played over 50% of the snaps.

The targets and touchdowns have been nice, but after two straight 100-yard games to kick off the year, Andrews has a total of seven catches and 46 yards the last two weeks. If he can't find paydirt in Week 5 against Pittsburgh, Andrews will likely leave his owners wanting plenty more.

Others: Delanie Walker (Vs. Bills), Jason Witten (Vs. Packers)

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