Start 'Em Sit 'Em Week 5: Breaking Down Each Position's Hardest Decision

Tyler Brooke@TylerDBrookeSenior Analyst IIOctober 3, 2013

CLEVELAND, OH - SEPTEMBER 29: Quarterback Brian Hoyer #6 of the Cleveland Browns looks for a pass during the first half against the Cincinnati Bengals at FirstEnergy Stadium on September 29, 2013 in Cleveland, Ohio. (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images)
Jason Miller/Getty Images

Week 5 of the NFL season is getting ready to start up, and it's time to make the call on the hardest fantasy football decisions at each position for this week.

The advice provided here should make you as smart as starting Danny Woodhead last week and wise enough to avoid performances like Chris Johnson's in Week 4 at all costs.

Starting and sitting the right players is the key to winning each and every week in your fantasy football league.  So, here are this week's "Start 'Em, Sit 'Em'" picks.

Note: All information regarding points scored is from ESPN's standard scoring leagues.


Brian Hoyer, QB, Cleveland Browns

Did anyone see the Browns going 2-0 after trading away Trent Richardson?  I certainly didn't.  

I'm sure even fewer people thought that Brian Hoyer would be a legitimate fantasy QB option.

In his first two games, Hoyer has put up 36 fantasy points thanks to 590 passing yards and five touchdowns.  It may seem crazy, but he has the chance to put up big numbers once again.

This week, the Browns are taking on the Buffalo Bills.  The Bills are allowing 277 passing yards and 23.3 points per game, and although they forced Joe Flacco to throw five interceptions, they've struggled when playing more effective offenses.

With Jordan Cameron and Josh Gordon becoming nice targets for Hoyer, he could put up some solid points once again this week.  If you're in a deeper league or your starting quarterback is on bye, this is a smart move to start.

Verdict: Start 'Em


Maurice Jones-Drew, RB, Jacksonville Jaguars

SEATTLE, WA - SEPTEMBER 22: Running back Maurice Jones-Drew #32 of the Jacksonville Jaguars celebrates after scoring a touchdown during the third quarter of the game against the Seattle Seahawks at CenturyLink Field on September 22, 2013 in Seattle, Washi
Steve Dykes/Getty Images

The Jaguars offense may be terrible this year, but this may be one of the harder decisions to make.

On one hand, Jones-Drew has had an ugly season so far.  He's had just one decent game, putting up 43 yards and a touchdown against the Seattle Seahawks.  Other than that, he hasn't put up more than four points in any other game.

On the other hand, the Jaguars are taking on the St. Louis Rams this week.  The Rams defense has not been good so far, especially against the run.  The team has given up at least 30 points in three of its four games and has given up 133.5 rushing yards per game.  The Rams have also given up five touchdowns on the ground so far.

As good as Jones-Drew has been in previous seasons, it appears that his career is officially on the downswing.  The Jaguars offense looks like one of the worst offenses of all time, putting up just 31 points in four games.

Regardless of how much the Rams defense has struggled, the Jaguars offense is so bad that it's going to be hard for Jones-Drew to put up any significant points.

Verdict: Sit 'Em


T.Y. Hilton, WR, Indianapolis Colts

Sep 29, 2013; Jacksonville, FL, USA; Indianapolis Colts wide receiver T.Y. Hilton (13) warms up before the start of the game against the Jacksonville Jaguars at EverBank Field. Mandatory Credit: Melina Vastola-USA TODAY Sports
Melina Vastola-USA TODAY Sports

After an incredible 2012 season for a rookie, Hilton has had just one good game this year, grabbing 124 yards on six receptions against the Miami Dolphins.

The other games for Hilton haven't been very productive.  He's had just five fantasy points over the last two weeks, and it looks like things might get even more difficult this week against the Seattle Seahawks.

The Seahawks easily have the best secondary in the NFL right now.  With Richard Sherman, Earl Thomas, Kam Chancellor and Brandon Browner, these guys can really shut down any group of receivers in the NFL.  The team is currently holding its opponents to just 191 passing yards per game with seven interceptions.

Hilton has tremendous upside and could have another breakout game any week, but this isn't going to be it.  With how good the Seahawks are, it's a good idea to leave Hilton on the bench this week, regardless of the league you're playing in.

Verdict: Sit 'Em


Jermichael Finley, TE, Green Bay Packers

SAN FRANCISCO, CA - SEPTEMBER 08:  Tight end Jermichael Finley #88 of the Green Bay Packers carries the ball against the San Francisco 49ers at Candlestick Park on September 8, 2013 in San Francisco, California.  (Photo by Jeff Gross/Getty Images)
Jeff Gross/Getty Images

After suffering a very scary concussion against the Cincinnati Bengals in Week 3, it looks like Finley is set to go this week against the Detroit Lions.

According to Rob Demovsky from, Finley has been cleared to play and is listed as probable for Week 5.  Despite being good to go, some owners might be afraid to start Finley.

Don't be.

Finley has had time to recover after the much-needed bye week for the Packers, and he should be rested up and 100 percent for this game.  The Packers offense looked like it missed him last week, and there's a good chance Aaron Rodgers targets him a good amount of the time.

The Lions also don't have the best pass defense.  They've allowed 268 passing yards per game, along with eight total passing touchdowns.  

Starting players after injuries can be concerning, but Finley should be ready to have another big game.

Verdict: Start 'Em



Caleb Sturgis, K, Miami Dolphins

HOUSTON, TX - AUGUST 17:  Caleb Sturgis #9 of the Miami Dolphins  kicks a field goal against the Houston Texans during a preseaon game at Reliant Stadium on August 17, 2013 in Houston, Texas.  (Photo by Scott Halleran/Getty Images)
Scott Halleran/Getty Images

The Dolphins are taking on the Baltimore Ravens this week, but that shouldn't slow down their offense too much, giving Sturgis some opportunities to get some points.

Unless you see a guy like Matt Prater available for some odd reason, don't worry about being too picky with your kicker.

Verdict: Start 'Em


New Orleans Saints D/ST

The Saints defense has improved dramatically from last season, but are they good enough to grab some decent fantasy points against the Chicago Bears?

The Bears have put up at least 30 points in three of their four games, including a 40-point outing in Week 3 against the Pittsburgh Steelers.  

In Week 4, even though the Bears scored 32 points, the Lions defense did still force four turnovers, including a defensive touchdown by Nick Fairley.

This is an opportunity for the Saints D/ST, which has scored 13 points the past two weeks, to have a big game.  Unless the Rams are available, stick with the Saints.

Verdict: Start 'Em