We’ve reached a critical juncture in the 2021 fantasy football season as it relates to the waive wire.
Week 6 marks the first wave of byes on the campaign. The Atlanta Falcons, New Orleans Saints, New York Jets and San Francisco 49ers all will be idle, meaning a number of fantasy heavy hitters are unavailable for the upcoming slate.
As such, many fantasy owners will need to take to the wire to fill lineup holes. Here are players (all rostered in 65% or less of Yahoo! leagues) at the four key positions who could be worthwhile pickups this week.
Trevor Lawrence, QB, Jacksonville Jaguars (50 percent rostered)
Lawrence has fared OK thus far in his rookie season despite being at the center of a situation where he’s not set up to succeed. The No. 1 overall pick in this year’s draft threw at least one touchdown in four of the Jaguars’ first five games and has two rushing scores to his credit, as well.
The Clemson product could be in line for a big Sunday against a Dolphins team that’s allowing the sixth-most fantasy points per game to quarterbacks. Miami surrendered multiple passing TDs in all but one of its games thus far.
Sony Michel RB, Los Angeles Rams (49 percent)
The Rams still are figuring out the best way to deploy Michel, who scored his first touchdown in a Los Angeles uniform last Thursday. But Sean McVay clearly isn’t afraid to heavily utilize the 2018 first-round pick, as evidenced by Michel’s 20 carries against the Buccaneers.
Perhaps the Rams will be inclined to give Michel the rock early and often against the Giants. New York has struggled to defend running backs — eighth-most fantasy points allowed to RBs per game — and Matthew Stafford appeared to sustain a finger injury to his throwing hand Thursday night.
Emmanuel Sanders, WR, Buffalo Bills (63 percent)
Sanders is starting to find his groove within Buffalo’s offense. The veteran wide receiver corralled a pair of touchdowns in two of the Bills’ last three games and racked up 222 receiving yards over that span. Sanders should be productive against the Titans, who are allowing the most fantasy points per game to wide receivers. Tennessee is one of three teams in the entire league to give up eight scores or more to WRs through five weeks.
Mo Alie-Cox, TE, Indianapolis Colts (3 percent)
We’ll shoot you straight: This recommendation is based entirely on the matchup. Cox only caught nine passes and was targeted 15 times over the course of the Colts’ first five games. That said, the college basketball stud-turned-tight end could feast Sunday against the Texans. Through five weeks, Houston has allowed more fantasy points to TEs than any other team in the league.