We’ve effectively reached the quarter mark of the 2021 fantasy football season. Time flies when you’re having fun, huh?
By this point, you probably have a good read on what your lineup is going to look like week in and week out barring serious injuries. Still, there always are one or two tough roster decisions that leave you racking your brain right up until the early afternoon kickoffs.
In hopes of limiting that stress, here are some Week 5 starts and sits recommendations.
Daniel Jones, QB, New York Giants
We might just have to accept that Jones is a good quarterback, at least in the fantasy football space. The third-year pro currently is the sixth-ranked fantasy signal-caller, and he enters a favorable matchup this weekend against the Cowboys. Dallas currently is allowing the fourth-most fantasy points per game to QBs, as its defense allowed nine touchdowns through the air across the team’s first four games.
Cordarrelle Patterson, RB, Atlanta Falcons
Patterson’s monstrous Week 4 performance should inspire confidence in this play, but we’re not only leaning on recency bias here. Atlanta finds ways to get the ball into the hands of Patterson, who’s accounted for seven-plus carries and six-plus targets in three of four games to date. The dual-threat this weekend will be working against a New York Jets defense that’s allowing the second-most fantasy points per game to RBs.
Hunter Renfrow, WR, Las Vegas Raiders
Renfrow isn’t the flashiest of wideouts, but he might not be that risky of a start this week. The third-year wide receiver, who caught a touchdown in each of Vegas’ last two games, is averaging nearly eight targets per contest. The Raiders’ Week 5 opponent, the Chicago Bears, have struggled to defend receivers this season, as they’ve allowed seven TDs to players at the position, tied for the second-most in the league. All told, Renfrow could be a very solid FLEX play this week.
Dalton Schultz, TE, Dallas Cowboys
Schultz comes off as a gamble simply because Dak Prescott has a pair of top-tier WRs to throw to in addition to an above-average backfield tandem. But Schultz has been a major aspect of Dallas’ offense recently, accounting for a combined 12 catches for 138 yards with three touchdowns in the Cowboys’ last two games. It’s an appealing matchup for Schultz on Sunday, too, as the Giants have allowed more scores to tight ends than any other team this season.
Baker Mayfield, QB, Cleveland Browns
The Browns are off to a 3-1 start to the season, but this early success hasn’t been due in part to dazzling play from their quarterback. Mayfield only logged three total touchdowns over Cleveland’s first four games and is averaging a mediocre 233 passing yards per contest. He shouldn’t fare very well Sunday against the Los Angeles Chargers, who are allowing the fourth-fewest fantasy points per game to QBs.
Najee Harris, RB, Pittsburgh Steelers
Save for his ridiculous receiving performance in Week 3 against the Cincinnati Bengals, Harris has had a pretty mild start to his rookie campaign. The Alabama product has yet to rush for more than 62 yards in a game and he’s only contributed two total touchdowns through four contests. Those weak numbers will surface when you play behind a terrible offensive line. Harris could be in for a long day against a Denver Broncos defense that’s flat-out nasty up front.
Kendrick Bourne, WR, New England Patriots
Some might believe Bourne is en route to becoming a legitimate FLEX option. After only catching three combined passes in New England’s first two games, the first-year Patriot amassed a combined 11 grabs for 154 yards with a touchdown in his team’s last two. But Houston actually has been OK defending the pass — seventh-fewest fantasy points per game to WRs — and the Patriots might look to pick apart the Texans’ lousy run defense.
Robert Tonyan, TE, Green Bay Packers
Tonyan hasn’t been a favorite target for Aaron Rodgers this season like he was last. The fourth-year pro only is averaging two catches per game and was held under 10 (!) yards in three of Green Bay’s first four contests. The Bengals definitely are not a great defensive team, but they’ve only given up one TD to a tight end thus far. Tonyan’s breakout likely will have to wait at least another week.