2021 Season: A Week Too Early Waiver Wire: Week 5 Moves for Week 6

(Photo Credit: USA Today Sports)

Malcolm McMillan (@McLateralFF)
The Lateral Editor

Welcome to Week 6. Welcome to bye weeks.

The first five weeks had been a fun ride, but this is where fantasy football gets serious. Been enjoying the Cordarelle Patterson gravy train? Well, though. He stays on your bench while the Atlanta Falcons stay at home. George Kittle? No dice if the San Francisco 49ers do not have to show up to work. These studs you have been relying on have to be replaced for the week. Hopefully, you have replacements waiting on the bench, but if not The Lateral has you covered. Go add these players now, so you are not left fighting the other fantasy football managers for them in your league come Week 6.

Note: All finishes are per FantasyData, and injuries will always be a push.

A Week Too Early Waiver Wire: Week 5 Moves for Week 6

Bye Weeks: Atlanta Falcons, New Orleans Saints, New York Jets, San Francisco 49ers

Week 4 Successes: PPR RB21 Damien Williams (Chicago Bears), PPR WR36 Quintez Cephus (Detroit Lions), K6 Randy Bullock (Tennessee Titans)

Week 4 Failures: QB21 Zach Wilson (New York Jets), PPR TE42 Pat Freiermuth (Pittsburgh Steelers), DST20 New York Giants

Week 4 Pushes: None

Record: 7-12-2

Quarterback

Key Matchups: Kansas City Chiefs at Washington Football Team (1 pm ET Sunday)

Who to add: Taylor Heinicke (Washington Football Team) [11.5% ESPN/13% Yahoo]

Look, Herms warned fantasy football managers to get Taylor Heinicke in The Lateral's waiver wire article yesterday, and I actually told you to scoop him up all the way back in Week 2. Heinicke has been the QB8 since taking over as the starting quarterback for the Washington Football Team in Week 2 and shows no signs of slowing down. Plus, the Kansas City Chiefs defense represents an excellent matchup for Heinicke in Week 6.

Running Back (PPR)

Key Matchups: Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Philadelphia Eagles (8:20 pm ET Thursday)

Who to add: Kenneth Gainwell (Philadelphia Eagles) [32.8% ESPN/38% Yahoo]

Is this matchup the best? No. It is arguably one of the worst. However, this is point-per-reception (PPR) fantasy football, which means targets are really valuable. Opposing coaches have targeted their running backs 34 times so far this season when playing the Tampa Bay Buccanneers, and Kenneth Gainwell is the lead target among the Philadelphia Eagles' running backs. He has also seen his targets increase week over week, and gets used consistently in the red zone. Dallas Cowboys running back Tony Pollard scored 8.3 PPR fantasy football points in his Week 1 matchup against the Tampa Bay run defense, with slightly lower usage to what Gainwell could see in Week 6. A touchdown would put Gainwell into top-24 running back territory for sure.

Wide Receiver (PPR)

Key Matchups: Green Bay Packers at Chicago Bears (1 pm ET Sunday)

Who to add: Randall Cobb (Green Bay Packers) [17.3% ESPN/13% Yahoo]

Week 4 may have finally been the start of something beautiful. Or rather the re-start of something beautiful. After having specifically requested him in the offseason, Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers finally reconnected with former (now current) wide receiver Randall Cobb in a big way. Cobb finished as the PPR WR6 with two touchdowns from five catches on six targets. While the touchdowns are clearly not sustainable, those targets might be. Especially with fellow wide receiver Marquez Valdes-Scantling still out against the Chicago Bears in Week 6, who have been a positive fantasy football matchup for wide receivers so far this season.

Tight End (PPR)

Key Matchups: Houston Texans at Indianapolis Colts (1 pm ET Sunday)

Who to add: Mo Alie-Cox (Indianapolis Colts) [0.4% ESPN/1% Yahoo]

Tight end is still a bit of a wasteland, but Indianapolis Colts head coach Frank Reich still likes to throw to them. That is why it was not necessarily a shock to see Mo Alie-Cox have an excellent performance in Week 4 against the Miami Dolphins. The Houston Texans are an even better fantasy football matchup for tight ends than the Dolphins, and the targets are trending in the right direction for Cox. Is there the risk that Jack Doyle is the Colts tight end that takes advantage of this matchup? Absolutely. However, Alie-Cox seems to be ascending in the position group and is the tight end I would prefer to bet on.

Defense/Special Teams

Key Matchups: Miami Dolphins at Jacksonville Jaguars (9:30 am ET Sunday)

Who to add: Miami Dolphins DST [26% ESPN/18% Yahoo]

The Cincinnati Bengals were the first defense/special teams (DST) unit not to finish in the top-12 against the Jacksonville Jaguars. However, despite the similar level of performance so far this season, I expect the Miami Dolphins to capitalize where the Bengals fell short. The Dolphins have been third in the NFL in fumbles recovered, and the Jacksonville Jaguars were averaging two fumbles a game until Week 4. Odds are that the Dolphins can get some points on the board for fantasy football managers through turnovers in Week 6.

Kicker

Key Matchups: Houston Texans at Indianapolis Colts (1 pm ET Sunday)

Who to add: Rodrigo Blankenship (Indianapolis Colts) [21.3% ESPN/50% Yahoo]

Rodrigo Blankenship just makes the cut for this column, so fantasy football managers better scoop up the Indianapolis Colts kicker while they still can. Blankenship is now K9 on the season and has been scoring at least 10 points a game over the past three games. Expect him to see plenty of opportunities against the Houston Texans, and for him to already be rostered in a majority of leagues by this time next week.

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