Fantasy Football Week 5: Rankings Audit & Podcast Highlights
Week 4 will go down in the 2019 record book as the week where a lot of the bench and waiver wire players scored big points while some big names disappointed. Week 5 brings us just two teams on a bye (Miami and Detroit) and only one of them really has any fantasy impact; I’ll let you guess which one.
This week’s rankings from Andy, Mike, and Jason are all over the place. The Ballers’ have many players with 3+ spot variances between at least two of them. This leads to a variance between the Ballers’ consensus and FantasyPros rankings at almost every position.
Working top-down, Carson Wentz is the first player with a three-spot variance. With a home match up with the New York Jets, Mike is the highest at QB2, while Jason has him at QB5.
Tom Brady goes on the road to face a Washington team who has been torched my nearly ever QB to face them. Andy has him down at QB6, three spots lower than Jason.
Lower down the rankings, the Ballers’ consensus ranking of QB18 is eight spots higher than the FantasyPros QB26 ranking.
The Ballers’ rankings have a lot of small variations down the list but are very similar all the day down to RB27. Only Joe Mixon (Ballers’ RB9, FantasyPros RB12) is more than two spots off either list.
Within the Ballers’ rankings, Mike is the lowest on Christian McCaffrey at RB4 heading into a home match up with the Jaguars.
Coming off a monster performance in Week 4, Nick Chubb in the top five for everyone except Andy, who has the Browns’ RB ranked as RB8 heading west to face the 49ers.
There is a lot of talk about James Conner losing touches, yet he’s still ranking in the top 15, with Jason the lowest at RB15, three spots lower than Andy.
Andy in five spots lowest on Le’Veon Bell compared to his co-hosts, ranking him at RB19 compared to RB14 for both Mike and Jason.
All three Ballers and the FantasyPros consensus and are still ranking Austin Ekeler over Melvin Gordon. If you believe that Melvin Gordon returns to his bell-cow role over the course of the season, this is your buying window!
As the season progresses and we have a better sense of the players’ opportunities, the rankings will continue to get tighter and tighter. For Week 5, you have to go all the way down to WR30 to find the first 3+ spot variance between the Ballers Consensus and FantasyPros. D.J. Moore occupies that WR30 spot on the Ballers’ rankings, while FantasyPros has him up at WR25 and slightly ahead of his team Curtis Samuel (WR27 on both lists).
Within the Ballers’ Rankings, the first 3+ spot variance is in the top 5, where Andy is the highest on Michael Thomas as WR3, three spots ahead of Jason’s WR6 ranking.
Andy is also the highest on Sammy Watkins, ranking him as WR8 for the week, even though both Mike and Jason have him four ranks lower as WR12. You’ll have to tune into Friday’s show to see why they think he can bounce back in Week 5.
Being based in Phoenix and Arizona Cardinal fans, the Ballers’ do a very good job of not letting their fandom get in the way of their fantasy rankings. Larry Fitzgerald is producing at a rather high level and the injury to Christian Kirk may provide him with additional targets. Andy is the lowest at WR16, five spots lower than Jason’s WR11 ranking.
Of all the positions, the TE has the most disparity between the Ballers this week. Nine of the top 20 have a 3+ variance between the highest and lowest ranking within the Ballers, while their consensus falls in nicely with the FantasyPros, where only one player has over a two spot variance.
Evan Engram checks in at TE3 for Jason, while Mike has him down at TE6 in a tough match up with the Vikings.
Mike is also the lowest on Darren Waller, ranking him three slots lower than Jason’s TE5 ranking.
Austin Hooper’s five-spot variance (TE5 for Mike, TE10 for Andy) is not the largest variance of the top 12 TEs. That title belongs to the consensus TE12, Delanie Walker, who is as high as TE10 for Jason but down at TE16 for Mike.
In the second batch of 12 TEs, Eric Ebron’s TE13 consensus ranking is drug down by Mike’s TE17 ranking for the Colt, while Andy and Jason have him just inside the top 12.
Lower on the list for TE streamers, Mike is bullish on New Orleans Saints’ TE Jared Cook, ranking him as TE12, while the FantasyPros consensus has him down at TE20.
Biggest Takeaways from the Week 5 Podcasts
Monday Punday! nOBJ, Gallman Joy, and New TE-who Diss? Top my list. Weekly Rewind kicks off at 7:18. Injury news on some streaming QBs and a handful of flex players. Fantasy Studmuffins can be found at 11:35. I hope you weren’t like and left Chris Godwin on your bench due to the injury concerns, as he topped the WR ranks for Week 4. The Stinkers of the Week segment is a long one this week, starting at 33:51. While some weekly starters at QB and RB failed owners, the WR segment sounds more like the WR ADP list from the first few rounds of drafts, with names like Hopkins, Julio, Beckham, Thielen, Cooper, and Edelman all disappointing fantasy owners.
Andy opens the show continuing the tease of his sneaky pick-up. The Ballers discuss the Monday Night Football game, followed up by the News and Notes segment at 14:42. This week’s Waivers segment opens at 21:04, where Andy finally reveals his sneaky pick-up. At 37:44 the Ballers discuss some of the drop candidates to acquire one of those waiver-wire wonders. Streamers for Week 5 starts at 48:34.
Wow. If you don’t normally view the show on YouTube, you need to at least watch the intro to the Wednesday episode to see the Hitman’s new look. Fantasy Buy or Sell (5:35) focuses on some of the NFC East players heading into Week 5. The New and Notes segment opens at 13:58, but it’s thankfully a rather quiet week. The Ballers make it Snappy at 22:24 and remind you to make sure you’re reading Ryan Weisse’s Weekly Snap Count Observations article. The Thursday Night Preview closes the show starting at 1:03:14.
The Question of the day is: Who is the scariest player to put into your line-up in Week 5? Find out the Ballers’ answers at 4:23. That segment roles right into the News and Notes. The Fantasy Forecast opens at 19:26 discussing the following matchups:
Bills @ Titans
Falcons @ Texans
Ravens @ Steelers
Patriots @ Redskins
Cardinals @ Bengals
Jaguars @ Panthers
Buccaneers @ Saints
The Ballers’ Starts of the Week can be found at 58:01, including why he’s so bullish on a TE mentioned above in the rankings audit. If you are still playing in a league with Kickers, Jason’s Ironclad, Locked & Loaded, 100% Guaranteed, Boom Boom Kicker of the week can be found at 1:04:55.
The Friday show starts with a recap of the eye-melting Seahawks Color Rush Thursday Night Football game, which actually produced a rather exciting finish if you could still see by the end of the game. The Ballers fire up the In-Or-Out segment at 11:40. If you match up was not on the Thursday show, you can listen to the second half of the Fantasy Forecasts starting at 15:54 focusing on these games:
Vikings @ Giants
Bears vs Raiders (London Game)
Jets @ Eagles
Broncos @ Chargers
Packers @ Cowboys
Colts @ Chiefs (Sunday Night Football)
Browns @ 49ers (Monday Night Football)
The Ballers on a Budget segment closes out the show at the 51:49 mark.
As we head into the fall, weather will start to play a role in some of the games. Make sure you check back every Sunday for Eric Ludwig’s Weekly Weather Conditions article. Here are links to the other articles that were released this week:
Rob Wilson’s Ten Things We Learned
Matthew Betz’s Injury Recap
Aaron Larson’s Target Report
Ryan Weisse’s Snap Count Observations
Lauren Carpenter’s Waiver Wire
Ryan Weisse’s Defense/Special Teams Strategy
Much of the DFS content drops on Thursday. There are a lot of DFS focused articles, so instead of linking each one, check them all out here.
Kyle Borgognoni’s Predicting the Top-12 QBs