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NFL Draft

Fantasy Football Week 6 Waiver Wire: Add These Players

  • The Draft Network
  • October 12, 2020
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What’s the right word to describe Week 5? Chaotic? Crazy? Bizarre? How about all of the above? After all, this is 2020. Chaos has been this year’s middle name. I don’t need to remind you about the many ways that COVID-19 has affected football, though its presence was definitely felt over the weekend. While fantasy football isn’t the highest name on the list of COVID-19 victims, the pandemic took a toll on fantasy leagues again. Days of uncertainty culminated in one game’s postponement (Broncos-Patriots) while fantasy owners scrambled to adjust their lineups. But for now, the season trudges on, which means it’s time to look at the top waiver-wire pickups ahead of Week 6. These players may become even more valuable if games are moved around again, so make sure you’re aware of your players’ situations, too.

NOTE: Players listed below are owned in fewer than 45% of leagues and typically geared toward 12-team leagues.

QUARTERBACKS

Ryan Fitzpatrick (QB - MIA) | Available in 72% of leagues

Good fantasy quarterbacks can be hard to find on waivers, so why not sprinkle in a bit of FitzMagic? I included Fitzpatrick here last week, and there’s no reason to not mention him again this week. He had his best game of the season against the 49ers and he faces a vulnerable Jets defense in Week 6. Even when he’s tossing picks, the 37-year-old quarterback retains value with his surprising running ability. As long as Fitzpatrick is the starter, he should be on fantasy rosters.

Teddy Bridgewater (QB - CAR) | Available in 60% of leagues

Bridgewater has posted two straight games of 20-plus fantasy points, which should put him on the radar of some QB-starved fantasy teams. He’s been very efficient this season en route to becoming a top-18 passer in fantasy. That’s good enough to be rostered, especially in 12-team leagues. I probably wouldn’t start him against Chicago’s stingy pass defense in Week 6, but he’s a solid option since he’s available in most leagues. 

Andy Dalton (QB - DAL) | Available in 99% of leagues

Dalton is by no means Dak Prescott, though he looked pretty good after Prescott went down with a devastating injury. Dalton was 9-for-11 for 111 yards with a fumble, so he only finished with 2.44 points. However, he’ll be a starting quarterback on one of the NFL’s most pass-happy teams this season. Dallas running the ball more is not out of the question, but Dalton’s situation makes him a better pickup than almost all available fantasy quarterbacks. He also has a favorable upcoming schedule against Arizona, Washington, and Philadelphia.

RUNNING BACKS

J.D. McKissic (RB - WAS) | Available in 89% of leagues

Antonio Gibson got all the hype out of Washington’s backfield, and he’s done a nice job in his first season. But McKissic shouldn’t be overlooked, either. He’s averaged a decent 9.6 over the last three weeks, which is more than big-name guys like Kenyan Drake and Mark Ingram. McKissic leads Washington’s backfield in targets and is the 4th-most targeted running back in the league. He may not be a fantasy starter yet, but he’s definitely a better option than some other players on rosters. 

Alexander Mattison (RB - MIN) | Available in 59% of leagues

Shockingly enough, Mattison is not rostered in most leagues. This is the same running back who had 136 yards on 23 touches on Sunday Night Football—Dalvin Cook had 89 yards on 22 touches. And now that Cook is banged up again, Mattison could be vaulted into RB1 territory. If Cook doesn’t play in Week 6, Mattison will have a juicy matchup against an Atlanta team that just fired their head coach. If Mattison is still somehow available in your league, pounce on him immediately.

D’Ernest Johnson (RB - CLE) | Available in 73% of leagues

Again, there are usually slim pickings on the waiver wire when it comes to running backs. That makes a player like Johnson so valuable because, with Nick Chubb out, he should see roughly 10 carries a game. Johnson hasn’t been too involved in the passing game, but he could be an immediate RB1 if Kareem Hunt were to go down. Johnson is a relatively safe player with loads of upside. Just don’t expect him to be a weekly starter in your lineup.

Giovani Bernard (RB - CIN) | Available in 99% of leagues

The only reason I have Bernard here is due to Mixon’s recent injury concerns. Even though Mixon has played every game, he was questionable before the Bengals’ last two games. If Mixon eventually misses a game, Bernard would be a near-lock in starting lineups. You don’t need to prioritize Bernard, though it wouldn’t hurt to stash him if you have a spot or two available.

WIDE RECEIVERS

Travis Fulgham (WR - PHI) | Available in 99% of leagues

After a Sunday night explosion in Week 4, Fulgham followed his breakout performance with another one. He posted a stunning 31.2 fantasy points on a hefty 13 targets. I’d expect Fulgham to continue to have a role in Philadelphia’s offense, and not just because the injury bug lives in the Eagles’ receiving room. They have a tough matchup against the Ravens next week, though Fulgham could feast against the Giants and Cowboys in the two weeks after.

Chase Claypool (WR - PIT) | Available in 91% of leagues

Claypool will probably be the hottest waiver pickup of the season following his 42.6-point performance, but proceed with caution. As good as Claypool looked, remember that Diontae Johnson left the game with an injury. As long as Johnson is out, Claypool should keep getting enough looks—just don’t expect 40 points every game. Pittsburgh has shown they can sustain three fantasy-relevant wide receivers, and considering how Claypool was used on Sunday, he deserves to be on rosters. Just don’t go breaking the bank for him, yet.

Laviska Shenault Jr. (WR - JAC) | Available in 69% of leagues

Shenault is another carryover from last week’s waiver wire column, and for good reason. He’s averaging 12.3 points and has scored more than 14 in each of the last two games. Shenault also has value in the run game, though he didn’t see a carry on Sunday for the first time all season. I’m not sure what’s up with the Jaguars’ receiving hierarchy, but he’s been consistent enough to be on more than 31% of rosters. Jacksonville plays Detroit next, so grab this man ASAP.

Keelan Cole (WR - JAC) | Available in 85% of leagues

Can I interest you in another Jacksonville receiver? Cole has been a consistent option for an offense that has produced the 10th-most passing yards in the NFL. He’s put up roughly 12 points per contest and sees nearly six targets a game. That’s sustainable production, especially with D.J. Chark battling injuries. Cole may not be a matchup-winner, but if you’re looking for a modest performance each week, Cole’s your guy. He’s been the definition of consistency this season, which can be hard to find in fantasy.

TIGHT END

Robert Tonyan (TE - GB) | Available in 52% of leagues

There aren’t many tight ends worthy of a waiver pickup this week, so I’ll break my rule and tout the second-best tight end in fantasy instead. Tonyan is fresh off a 33.8-point performance after posting two games of double-digit points. I’d be a little worried about  Tonyan’s lack of targets—he’s seen 4.7 targets a game—but the position is so thin in fantasy that targets don’t hold as much weight here. He’s a must-add if he’s still a free agent in your league.

Eric Ebron (TE - PIT) | Available in 63% of leagues

Aside from a 16-point performance in Week 3, Ebron hasn’t done much to be a must-add in fantasy. However, he’s averaged 10.3 points over the last three games. Ebron has also run the second-most routes on the team, so you know he’s involved in the Steelers’ offense. He could be a solid matchup-based starter, especially if games continue to be affected by COVID-19.

For any additional thoughts on fantasy football, make sure to follow Zach on Twitter @ZachCohenFB.

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