On Thursday, New York Giants receiver Ramses Barden was added to the injury report along with No. 1 receiver Hakeem Nicks, meaning that desperate fantasy owners now have no choice but to pick up Domenik Hixon.
Lets take an in-depth look at why fantasy owners have no choice but to make a move for Hixon this weekend.
Hixon Came Up Big Last Week
Nicks missed the Giants' losing effort in Week 4 against the Philadelphia Eagles thanks to injury, and has already been ruled out for the Week 5 matchup against the Browns.
Last week Hixon came up big in Nicks' absence, catching six passes for 114 yards. He led the team in yards, although fellow receiver Victor Cruz came up with a touchdown catch on three more receptions.
The player most fantasy owners are likely dropping to add Hixon is Ramses Barden. Last week Barden caught a measly two passes for 36 yards despite the massive opportunity.
Hixon is a veteran who fits the system perfectly and has nice chemistry with Manning. He'll come up big this week just like he did last week, but this time against a lesser opponent.
Eli Manning and Tom Coughlin Favor Hixon
Giants head coach Tom Coughlin is known for preferring to play veterans over younger players in scenarios similar to the game on Sunday.
It is also clear that Manning prefers the veteran Hixon because he is not yet on the same page with Barden (via NJ.com):
We talk and we go over things, plays from last week, plays from practice, just trying to get on the same page...He is young and it takes time for a QB and a receiver to gain trust and that confidence and get on the exact same page and be able to understand what each other is expecting.
Clearly, Barden is still on the outside looking in when it comes to playing time. A receiver and quarterback growing together and getting on the same page is something that happens on the practice field, not during a live game.
For now, Hixon will get more playing time simply because Manning does not fully trust Barden yet.
Like it or not, the only option in all leagues is to let go of Ramses Barden and pray he can be re-acquired once healthy.
Hixon, thanks to Nicks being ruled out and Barden having issues with a concussion that was not diagnosed until last Tuesday, is now a legit No. 2 fantasy option in all league options.
With blanket coverage likely being applied to Cruz by the Browns on Sunday, Manning and Hixon are going to put up some impressive numbers.
Smart fantasy owners will jump on Hixon now and dominate this week.