Stars of Week 6

QB: Jameis Winston, TB: 30-41, 395 yards, 4 TDs, 2 INTs

RB: Todd Gurley, LAR: 28 carries, 208 yards, 2 TDs

WR: Tyreek Hill, KC: 7 catches, 142 yards, 3 TDs

TE: Eric Ebron, IND: 4 catches, 71 yards, 1 TD

We’re through just over one-third of the NFL season, and we’ve had plenty of interesting storylines this year. Patrick Mahomes is the next generational QB superstar, the Rams remain the last undefeated team and Jon Gruden should have stayed in the broadcast booth. Lots of excitement remains ahead in what should be a fantastic 2018 season. Speaking of excitement, Jameis Winston has returned to the starting lineup for the Bucs, and he has picked up where Fitz Magic (Ryan Fitzpatrick’s dazzling alter ego) left off. Winston put up very solid numbers against the Falcons, and we’ll take a closer look at his fantasy value moving forward below. The fantasy league MVP has been running back Todd Gurley this season, and he continues to dominate week to week. Wide receiver Tyreek Hill has had a career season thus far, using his world class speed to become a superhero in his own right. The Mahomes-Hill combo has been electric, and Hill has made himself into a top 5 WR. Last but not least, Eric Ebron has been reborn with the Colts, scoring nearly a TD per game. Ebron remains a back half TE1, and will continue to produce. 

Week 6 Takeaways – A Closer Look

Each week we take a closer look at a handful of performances and sort out what such performances mean going forward. 

- Jameis Winston, QB – TB: 30-41, 395 yards, 4 TDs, 2 INTs

Analysis: Remember the Bucs upsetting the Saints in Week 1, and then the Eagles in Week 2, with Fitz Magic playing out of his mind? Well, predictably Ryan Fitzpatrick’s magic ended with a thud and Jameis Winston got his starting gig back shortly after returning from suspension. Now in his fourth year in the NFL, Winston has had an up and down career. Winston looked like a franchise passer after his second season, only to stagnate in terms of his growth last year. The Bucs will have a huge decision to make following the year in terms of whether or not to pick up Winston’s fifth year option, or to provide an extension, etc. Good thing we only have to decide whether or not Winston should be in our starting lineups! As for this question, consider these key points: 1) the Bucs have no defense, 2) the Bucs have no running game, and 3) while Winston doesn’t always make great decisions (look at his career INT percentage), he can sling it. Winston has a strong receiving corps and will constantly be placed in game situations requiring that he throw. So, this amounts to a back end QB1 who can elevate to a top-5 option against bad passing defenses. Don’t be afraid to ride Winston as your starting QB.

- Jordan Howard, RB – CHI: 14 carries, 69 yards, 0 TDs

Analysis: While the numbers above look reasonable on their face, if you watched Howard’s usage throughout the game, you’d have come to a different conclusion. With the second quarter winding down, Howard lost a fumble while on Dolphins’ one yard line, and subsequently didn’t get another carry until the fourth quarter. Howard has yet to cross the 100 yard mark in a game this year, and only has one TD through five matchups. Howard’s lack of productivity has come despite facing a schedule with friendly rushing defenses. At the same time, Tarik Cohen has significantly outproduced Howard when you also factor in the passing game. For now, Howard remains the Bears primary ball carrier, but one more fumble could change that. Howard should be downgraded from RB2 to flex, and he’s no longer a weekly starter – at least not until he fixes whatever ails him. 

- Amari Cooper, WR – OAK: 0 catches, 0 yards, 0 TDs, 1 target

Analysis: Has any team’s future gone downhill more quickly than that of the soon-to-be Las Vegas Raiders? I’ll go ahead and answer that with an emphatic NO! Jon Gruden has screwed this team up in virtually every way possible, and it looks like the carnage will only continue. Amari Cooper left the game early against the Seahawks due to injury, but if you take a look at last week’s stats, you’ll see one catch for 10 yards. Cooper has twice cleared the 100 yard mark, and in the other four games, has failed to exceed 17 yards receiving. That just doesn’t work for you, for me or for anyone else with a vested interest in Cooper’s performance. The Raiders are in a free fall, and Cooper needs to sit on your bench until further notice. One more key point to consider – Cooper’s name has been floated in trade rumors, and a change of scenery could revive his value in a hurry. So if you can acquire Cooper on the cheap and have the bench space to stash, there could be a payoff in the near future.

- Taylor Gabriel, WR – CHI: 5 catches, 110 yards, 0 TDs

Analysis: We’ve looked at a Chicago Bear who has disappointed, and now we take a look at a player trending in the other direction. Taylor Gabriel played a supporting role with the Atlanta Falcons the last two years, and he moved to the Bears in the offseason to chase a better opportunity with the rising club. Starting opposite Allen Robinson, Gabriel has made himself a key target for QB Mitch Trubisky.  Taylor has surpassed 100 yards each of the last two weeks, and has been targeted roughly 7 times per game on average. Gabriel has accumulated 27 catches on those 34 targets, and with that level of success, Trubisky will give Gabriel plenty of looks. Gabriel is a must add if you need a WR, and he should be considered a healthy flex option.

- Chester Rogers, WR – IND: 4 catches, 55 yards, 1 TD 

Analysis: While TY Hilton has missed the last two games for the Colts, Chester Rogers has stepped up to fill a large portion of the void. Rogers scored his first TD of the season this past Sunday against the Colts, and was targeted by Luck 10 times. If that sounds like a fluke, note that over the two prior weeks, Luck targeted Rogers 11 times per game. Even upon Hilton’s eventual return, Rogers has staying power in the Colts offense. Given that the Colts’ defense is all kinds of bad, the team will be chasing points in most games, which will continue to lead to usage for Rogers. While Hilton remains out, Rogers will continue to get 10 targets a game, while settling in the 6-8 target range when Hilton returns. For leagues with 12 or more teams, Rogers is a viable starter while Hilton remains out, and a borderline WR3/WR4 when Hilton starts alongside him. 

Rapid Fire Pickups

Each week we throw out potential free agent pickups from each position for deeper leagues, in each case 1) someone who has NOT been featured above, and 2) a player available in most leagues. 

QB: Mitch Trubisky, CHI

RB: Mike Davis, SEA

RB: Marlon Mack, IND

WR: Chris Godwin, TB

WR: Albert Wilson, MIA

TE: Ricky Seals-Jones, ARI

Week 7 Rankings 


  1. Patrick Mahomes, KC        Cin
  2. Matt Ryan, Atl                  NYG
  3. Andy Dalton, Cin              @KC
  4. Jared Goff, LAR                @SF
  5. Jameis Winston, TB          Cle
  6. Cam Newton, Car             @Phi
  7. Kirk Cousins, Min              @NYJ
  8. Tom Brady, NE                 @Chi
  9. Carson Wentz, Phi            Car
  10. Drew Brees, NO               @Bal
  11. Andrew Luck, Ind             Buf
  12. Philip Rivers, LAC             Ten
  13. Matthew Stafford, Det      @Mia
  14. Mitchell Trubisky, Chi        NE
  15. Deshaun Watson, Hou      @Jax
  16. Baker Mayfield, Cle          @TB
  17. Eli Manning, NYG             @Atl
  18. Alex Smith, Wsh              Dal
  19. Dak Prescott, Dal             @Wsh
  20. Joe Flacco, Bal                 NO

Running Backs:

  1. Todd Gurley, LAR            @SF
  2. Saquon Barkley, NYG      @Atl
  3. Ezekiel Elliott, Dal           @Wsh
  4. Alvin Kamara, NO           @Bal
  5. Kareem Hunt, KC            Cin
  6. Joe Mixon, Cin                @KC
  7. C. McCaffrey, Car            @Phi
  8. Sony Michel, NE              @Chi
  9. T.J. Yeldon, Jax               Hou
  10. James White, NE             @Chi
  11. Dalvin Cook, Min             @NYJ
  12. Tevin Coleman, Atl           NYG
  13. LeSean McCoy, Buf          @Ind
  14. Nick Chubb, Cle               @TB
  15. Mark Ingram II, NO         @Bal
  16. Adrian Peterson, Wsh      Dal
  17. Chris Thompson, Wsh      Dal
  18. Tarik Cohen, Chi              NE
  19. Matt Breida, SF                LAR
  20. Alex Collins, Bal               NO
  21. Kenyan Drake, Mia          Det
  22. Bilal Powell, NYJ              Min
  23. Jordan Howard, Chi         NE
  24. Kerryon Johnson, Det     @Mia
  25. Corey Clement, Phi         Car
  26. Marlon Mack, Ind            Buf
  27. W. Smallwood, Phi          Car
  28. Dion Lewis, Ten              @LAC
  29. Lamar Miller, Hou           @Jax
  30. Isaiah Crowell, NYJ         Min
  31. Peyton Barber, TB           Cle
  32. Javorius Allen, Bal          NO
  33. Ito Smith, Atl                 NYG
  34. Duke Johnson, Cle          @TB
  35. Nyheim Hines, Ind          Buf
  36. Austin Ekeler, LAC           Ten
  37. Frank Gore, Mia              Det
  38. Derrick Henry, Ten          @LAC
  39. LeGarrette Blount, Det    @Mia
  40. Raheem Mostert, SF        LAR

Wide Receivers:

  1. Adam Thielen, Min          @NYJ
  2. Odell Beckham Jr., NYG   @Atl
  3. Julio Jones, Atl                NYG
  4. A.J. Green, Cin                @KC
  5. DeAndre Hopkins, Hou     @Jax
  6. Tyreek Hill, KC                 Cin
  7. Michael Thomas, NO        @Bal
  8. Mike Evans, TB                Cle
  9. Keenan Allen, LAC           Ten
  10. Stefon Diggs, Min            @NYJ
  11. Jarvis Landry, Cle            @TB
  12. Robert Woods, LAR          @SF
  13. Golden Tate, Det              @Mia
  14. Brandin Cooks, LAR         @SF
  15. T.Y. Hilton, Ind                 Buf
  16. Tyler Boyd, Cin                @KC
  17. Alshon Jeffery, Phi           Car
  18. Julian Edelman, NE         @Chi
  19. Kenny Golladay, Det        @Mia
  20. Allen Robinson, Chi         NE
  21. Josh Gordon, NE             @Chi
  22. Devin Funchess, Car       @Phi
  23. Sterling Shepard, NYG    @Atl
  24. Michael Crabtree, Bal      NO
  25. Marvin Jones Jr., Det       @Mia
  26. Mohamed Sanu, Atl         NYG
  27. Taylor Gabriel, Chi           NE
  28. Sammy Watkins, KC        Cin
  29. John Brown, Bal              NO
  30. Marquise Goodwin, SF     LAR
  31. Corey Davis, Ten             @LAC
  32. Will Fuller, Hou                @Jax
  33. Willie Snead, Bal              NO
  34. Nelson Agholor, Phi          Car
  35. DeSean Jackson, TB         Cle
  36. Calvin Ridley, Atl              NYG
  37. Chris Godwin, TB             Cle
  38. Keke Coutee, Hou            @Jax
  39. Dede Westbrook, Jax        Hou
  40. Jermaine Kearse, NYJ       Min

Tight End:

  1. Travis Kelce, KC              Cin
  2. Zach Ertz, Phi                 Car
  3. George Kittle, SF             LAR
  4. Eric Ebron, Ind                Buf
  5. David Njoku, Cle             @TB
  6. Greg Olsen, Car              @Phi
  7. Jordan Reed, Wsh           Dal
  8. Austin Hooper, Atl           NYG
  9. Evan Engram, NYG          @Atl
  10. O.J. Howard, TB              Cle
  11. C.J. Uzomah, Cin            @KC
  12. Trey Burton, Chi              NE
  13. Kyle Rudolph, Min           @NYJ
  14. Benjamin Watson, NO     @Bal
  15. Cameron Brate, TB          Cle
  16. Geoff Swaim, Dal            @Wsh
  17. Charles Clay, Buf            @Ind
  18. Gerald Everett, LAR        @SF
  19. Hayden Hurst, Bal           NO
  20. Vernon Davis, Was          Dal

Defense/Special Teams:

  1. Los Angeles Chargers      Ten
  2. Jacksonville Jaguars        Hou
  3. Los Angeles Rams           @SF
  4. Houston Texans              @Jax
  5. Minnesota Vikings           @NYJ
  6. Indianapolis Colts           Buf
  7. Philadelphia Eagles         Car
  8. Cleveland Browns           @TB
  9. Buffalo Bills                    @Ind
  10. Baltimore Ravens            NO
  11. Carolina Panthers            @Phi
  12. Chicago Bears                 NE
  13. Dallas Cowboys               @Was
  14. Washington Redskins       Dal
  15. Detroit Lions                   @Mia