This week, the league's greatest quarterbacks had a chance to battle it out: Tom Brady took on Aaron Rodgers in a surprise blowout win, while MVP candidate Josh Allen lost to Super Bowl MVP Patrick Mahomes.
The lesson to be learned here is don't count those MVP votes before Week 6 (and never, never slander Tom Brady before a big game).
@AaronRodgers12 is a legend for this 😂 https://t.co/VpT7GbLUGb— Matt 🦁 (@Matt 🦁) 1603152049.0
Rodgers' celebration was approved by McCringleberry himself 😂 @AaronRodgers12 @KeeganMKey @packers https://t.co/oTNBVe1BnA— The Checkdown (@The Checkdown) 1603137661.0
While Rodgers has made it clear he'll get over the hump, you still have a fantasy team to worry about in the weeks ahead. Here's how to overcome the mid-season hump and secure a playoff spot in this week's Drops, Swaps and Shops.
Marvin Jones Jr.
If you look up "Marvin Jones" in an ESPN Fantasy league, there's a video titled, "Is it time to drop Marvin Jones Jr.?" The answer is yes, it's time to let go of the former staple in Matthew Stafford's pass attack.
Drafted in 2012, the 30-year-old veteran signed a five-year, $40 million contract with the Lions in 2016. He balled out in 2017, delivering a 1,000+ yard season, but he's put up quiet WR2 numbers ever since. This season, he's only logged 146 yards. Jones has a name, he's had game, but it's time to dissociate from anyone who isn't Kenny Golladay.
Speaking of legacies that haven't carried on, Kerryon Johnson is another once-capable Lions player who's been crowded out of his position group. With the addition of Adrian Peterson and D'Andre Swift, Johnson has been lost in the shuffle, ranking third in a RB committee on a weak offense. The Lions might turn around their 2-3 season, but it doesn't look like Johnson will have much opportunity unless someone gets hurt. He can wait it out on your bench, but it's probably time to let go entirely.
#Lions Week 6 RB snap rates: D'Andre Swift - 38% Adrian Peterson - 35% Kerryon Johnson - 22% https://t.co/p1PC9kgU7a— Jared Smola (@Jared Smola) 1603109470.0
While the Lions may have a crowded backfield, the 49ers have a confounding one. Each week, there's a rotation of guys running the ball due to injuries.
Updated Full Team Injury Report: Nick Bosa: Torn ACL Solomon Thomas: Torn ACL (Likely) Jimmy Garoppolo: High Ankle… https://t.co/OOSsZLQClD— Slightly Depressed 49er Fan (@Slightly Depressed 49er Fan) 1600641050.0
Raheem Mostert is the starter when healthy, but Jerick McKinnon, Jeff Wilson Jr. and JaMycal Hasty have all made appearances this season. With Mostert out and only McKinnon and Hasty healthy, it's time to let go of Coleman, the IR player who Kyle Shanahan called a "long shot" to be activated in Week 6.
🚨 Raheem Mostert 🚨 As expected, high ankle sprain. Typical timeline is 3-4 weeks minimum, so yes the IR short ter… https://t.co/Gfm3iGjoup— Jeff Mueller, PT, DPT (@Jeff Mueller, PT, DPT) 1603147214.0
Earlier in the season, I passed on a trade offer involving Hayden Hurst for Nick Chubb. While it was an unequal trade at the time, Chubb's IR status and Hurst's burst in recent weeks would have at least given me more points than a benched feature back.
Making it look easy, @haydenrhurst 🙌 📺 FOX https://t.co/tHTvHOsyl0— Atlanta Falcons (@Atlanta Falcons) 1603050993.0
In an explosive offense that won its first game sans Quinn, Hurst has made the most of his catches, averaging at least 12 YPC in four out of the last six games while scoring touchdowns in three of them. While his volume isn't high, Hurst could be worth something for his red zone looks in an offense that can only go up from here.
Last week I plugged in Hayden Hurst over Mike Gesicki and ended with 2.80 fantasy points while Gesicki in bench had… https://t.co/DbSGsukTqb— Angelo Lopez (@Angelo Lopez) 1603135645.0
Ever since Nick Foles stepped up under center for the Bears, everything has vastly improved—including Allen Robinson's fantasy value. We've seen how quickly a receiver's value can fluctuate depending on who's throwing the ball, and Robinson is now the 11th overall receiver after Week 5.
Mr. Go get it @AllenRobinson #TeamISE https://t.co/V1JUATNkp2— ISE Football (@ISE Football) 1603219790.0
Despite a disappointing fantasy showing against the Panthers this Sunday, Robinson still turned five catches into 53 yards, which isn't bad for the Bears' top receiver. If you're looking for a more consistent receiver and need to land someone in a trade, it wouldn't hurt to have Robinson on your roster.
Trading Mike Evans may sound like a terrible idea—the guy is tied with Randy Moss for the most consecutive 1,000-yard seasons to start a career—but the reappearance of Chris Godwin creates a case for trading the red zone threat for something big.
Me deciding if I should start Mike Evans in fantasy every week https://t.co/TaLNgYJnIE— Cade Argo (@Cade Argo) 1603063768.0
Yes, Brady's favored 6'5" target is tied with Adam Thielen for the most touchdowns this season, but Evans has been playing through a sore ankle in recent weeks, resulting in a lone 10-yard catch against the Packers. Interestingly enough, Evans' target share dipped in Weeks 1, 3, and 6—the same weeks when Chris Godwin was healthy. With Godwin on the mend, it's possible that Evans could see less targets in a more diversified offense. If you need an RB1 or RB2/WR2, this could be a risk worth taking.
Tight End Targets: Anthony Firkser & Darren Fells
If Ertz and Gronk have been letting you down, it's time to let go and do a little tight end shopping in free agency. Lucky for you, Anthony Firkser showed up this week as a worthy replacement for Jonnu Smith, while Darren Fells has been filling in quite nicely for Jordan Akins. With injuries devastating the league left and right, these backup tight ends are worth starting as long as their starters are out.
Totally believe in Jonnu Smith as a tier 1 TE. I really do. But really need to know if he is out this week. If so… https://t.co/4JB4mFUQpO— Howie The Titan (@Howie The Titan) 1603218681.0
Travis Fulgham should have been targeted in free agency last week after a monster 152-yard game, but ICYMI, Fulgham is the guy to have after another impressive showing against Baltimore.
Eagles projected skill positions this Thursday against the Giants. RB: Boston Scott RB: Corey Clement WR: Greg Ward… https://t.co/lqOa1mgWrf— Karlo (@Karlo) 1603221501.0
It's hard to say how long this will last, as he's filling in for fallen Eagles comrades Alshon Jeffery, DeSean Jackson and Jalen Reagor, but as long as they're out, Fulgham is literally the last man standing. He's available in over half of ESPN leagues, so if he's there, be prepared to splurge on Fulgham.
Week 6 #Fantasy Breakouts #NFL #FantasyFootball Player | Fantasy Pts.| Pct. Owned Trey Burton (IND) | 17.9 | 17% An… https://t.co/N7RHCxWLXc— The Daily NFL + Fantasy Football (@The Daily NFL + Fantasy Football) 1603213529.0
Another receiver that could have been targeted after Week 4, Broncos receiver Tim Patrick has been getting less attention than Fulgham in fantasy despite back-to-back games with over 100 yards.
Tim Patrick is the first Bronco with back-to-back 100-yard receiving games since Emmanuel Sanders in 2018 https://t.co/sEJM6UZGfx— Colorado Betting Boys (@Colorado Betting Boys) 1603223160.0
Patrick has been maximizing his impact, getting at least 10 yards per reception in all but one game this season, while making an end zone appearance twice. Patrick needs to be on your roster, like, yesterday—and since he's rostered in less than 20 percent of ESPN leagues, he's an easier get than Fulgham.