The drama of Week 5 is in the rearview mirror after multiple games were rescheduled and blue chip players like Dak Prescott suffered serious injuries.
The bye weeks are now in full swing, meaning you will need to remove any Seahawks, Saints, Raiders and Chargers from your lineups, and if COVID-19 threatens more schedule changes, it might be another week of last-minute scrambling to set lineups.
The turmoil and uncertainty can be frustrating at times, but it’s important to keep perspective that the 2020 NFL season was at serious risk of being played at all. Better to have a chaotic fantasy season than no fantasy season, right?
There are a number of exploitable Week 6 matchups — including the Vikings at home versus the Falcons — and some you should consider avoiding — such as the Bengals on the road against the Colts. Set your lineups and be sure to check out some good plays at each position below, as well as some other players you should consider avoiding.
If you need a streaming option or bye week fill-in, check out Week 6 waiver wire pickups here.
Who to Start in Week 6
Matthew Stafford (QB), Detroit Lions at Jacksonville Jaguars
Stafford has only delivered top-12 QB numbers for fantasy once all season. He has a good chance to rectify that in Weeks 6 and 7 in Jacksonville and Atlanta against two of the weakest defenses in NFL. The Jaguars have lost two straight against previously winless teams and their defense has given up an average of 29.4 points per game. Stafford will be well-rested off of his Week 5 bye and should secure mid- to low-end QB1 numbers this week against the Lions.
Alexander Mattison (RB), Minnesota Vikings vs. Atlanta Falcons
Mattison is a must-start now with Dalvin Cook likely to be out for the Vikings’ Week 6 contest against the Falcons. The backup saw 20 carries for 112 yards and caught all three passes he was targeted on for 24 yards last Sunday with Cook ailing with a groin strain. Mattison vaults into low-end RB1 status in this tantalizing matchup against Atlanta’s flimsy defense.
Myles Gaskin (RB), Miami Dolphins vs. New York Jets
Gaskin posted his best stat line all season and continues to see touches as the lead back in this offense. He had 16 rushing attempts for 57 yards, scored his first touchdown and caught five of five targets for 34 yards with Jordan Howard a healthy scratch last week against the 49ers. Gaskin now gets the Jets, who don’t inspire fear in any dimension of the game. Expect the Dolphins to jump out early and Gaskin to see significant touches once again. He is a solid RB2 start.
David Montgomery (RB), Chicago Bears at Carolina Panthers
Montgomery scored for the second time this year on Thursday in a very difficult matchup against the Buccaneers’ stingy run defense. He saw 10 carries for 29 yards and a touchdown and caught seven of eight targets for 30 yards. He’s become more involved in the passing game with Tarik Cohen out for the year, which gives this second-year running back a solid floor. He is a high-end RB2 with RB1 upside in a favorable matchup against the Panthers, whose defensive unit is in major rebuild mode.
Justin Jefferson (WR), Minnesota Vikings vs. Atlanta Falcons
Jefferson had a quiet Week 5 in what should have been a favorable matchup against the Seahawks. He caught three of five passes for 23 yards, but is in a phenomenal spot to bounce back against the Falcons at home. The Falcons are in shambles after starting the season 0-5 and firing head coach Dan Quinn this past week. The team promoted its defensive coordinator Raheem Morris to interim head coach. All of this feels like the perfect storm for another strong outing for the exciting rookie. He is a high-upside WR2 this week heading into the Vikings’ bye.
Will Fuller V (WR), Houston Texans at Tennessee Titans
Say what you want about Fuller’s inconsistency, but he has looked very strong over the last three games. He was overshadowed by Brandin Cooks’ wild day, but reeled in a respectable four of eight targets for 58 yards and scored in his third straight game. He is a strong WR2 play with WR1 potential this week against the Titans in what should be a high-scoring affair.
Jonnu Smith (TE), Tennessee Titans vs. Houston Texans
Smith returned from the Titans’ unexpected Week 4 bye with a vengeance and caught five of seven targets for 40 yards and two touchdowns. He’s now scored five times through four games and will have the chance to put up top-tier TE1 numbers opposite the Texans’ exploitable secondary in Week 6.
Who to Sit in Week 6
Teddy Bridgewater (QB), Carolina Panthers vs. Chicago Bears
Bridgewater delivered last week as a top streaming option in Atlanta and finished as QB4 for the week. He completed 27 of 37 attempts for 313 yards, two touchdowns and zero interceptions in the cakewalk matchup that precipitated Quinn’s ousting. The Bears are on the opposite end of the defensive spectrum and have yet to allow more than 16 fantasy points to a quarterback all year. He falls outside of the streaming conversation, but is still startable in two-quarterback/superflex leagues.
Jerick McKinnon (RB), San Francisco 49ers vs. Los Angeles Rams
McKinnon (and much of the 49ers team) let down fantasy managers in Week 5 after seeing just one rush for zero yards and two catches for 5 yards. Raheem Mostert — who had been out with a MCL injury he suffered in Week 2 — saw the vast majority of carries out of the backfield and had 11 attempts for 90 yards and caught three passes for 29 yards. McKinnon isn’t a trustworthy start right now, especially in light of questionable quarterback play and a decent Rams run defense. He is an RB3 with a near-zero floor in Week 6.
Darrell Henderson (RB), Los Angeles Rams at San Francisco 49ers
Henderson dominated touches in this three-man running back committee on Sunday. He had 15 carries for 38 yards and a touchdown, as well as three catches on four targets for 30 yards and a touchdown, which ranked sixth among running backs in Week 5. That said, the consistency just isn’t there, and two of his five performances this year have been complete duds. Now would be the optimal time to sell high on Henderson if you can, especially with rookie Cam Akers — who led the team in rushing yards last week — regaining strength. He has the potential to pop off in any given game, but the backfield competition renders him a risky RB3 against the 49ers, who still have playmakers on defense.
Tee Higgins (WR), Cincinnati Bengals at Indianapolis Colts
The 2020 second-rounder will see his second-straight challenging matchup in Indianapolis after facing the Ravens in Week 5. He caught four of eight passes for 62 yards, which isn’t awful, but temper expectations for Joe Burrow and company this week against the Colts’ lights-out defense.
Tim Patrick (WR), Denver Broncos at New England Patriots
Patrick was a popular Week 5 waiver add after an electric Week 4 showing. He reeled in six of seven targets for 113 yards and a touchdown against the struggling Jets defense. He should continue to see targets — especially with the many injuries to the Broncos’ receiving corps — but could struggle on the road in New England, whose secondary far eclipses that of the Jets, even if Stephon Gilmore (COVID-19) doesn’t play. It’s not a good matchup for Patrick, who will be depending on Brett Rypien for the second week in a row. He’s a streamer at best in deeper leagues this week.
Robert Tonyan (TE), Green Bay Packers at Tampa Bay Buccaneers
It’s going to be tough to sit Tonyan after the rising star scored three touchdowns in Week 4, bringing his 2020 total to five through four games. It would be a disservice not to note that he caught six of six passes for 98 yards and three touchdowns against the Falcons, who are particularly terrible at defending tight ends. He will face a tough Week 6 matchup in Tampa, whose secondary has been top notch this year. Wait to deploy Tonyan in Week 7 in Houston if you have better options rostered this week.