It’s already Week 6 of the 2013 NFL regular season, and fantasy owners are trying to scour what’s left of the waiver wire in hopes of finding a hidden gem.
All of the following players were stars in Week 5 and should find their way to your roster.
Based on standard-scoring leagues.
Geno Smith, QB, New York Jets
The New York Jets are one of the biggest surprises of the early 2013 season, but it is the play of rookie quarterback Geno Smith that is the most surprising. Fantasy owners must pull the trigger and pick up the dynamic starter now.
The biggest question around Smith was his inability to protect the football and the turnovers it caused. With head coach Rex Ryan simplifying the game plan, Smith was able to throw for 16 completions on 20 attempts, 199 passing yards and three touchdowns Monday night against Atlanta.
While the three TDs were impressive, it was the zero interceptions that stuck out most.
If you are in a 12-team league or deeper and you have a quarterback or backup that hasn’t performed up to your standards, taking the educated risk on Smith that could pay off huge as the season rolls on.
Harry Douglas, WR, Atlanta Falcons
If you have the opportunity, pick up Douglas.
Not only will Douglas see an increased role in the offense with Jones sidelined and Roddy White still dealing with his own injuries, but Jones owners will hit the panic mode and also overpay to acquire the backup via trade.
Whether you need a receiver or not, there is enough value in picking up Douglas now to warrant a roster spot. Consider this a long-term fantasy investment.
Andre Ellington, RB, Arizona Cardinals
The Arizona Cardinals are 23rd in the league with 81 rushing yards per game this season, but the increasing workload of rookie Andre Ellington should have fantasy owners of Rashard Mendenhall taking notice.
Mendenhall has struggled mightily in 2013 (amassing only 219 yards on 69 carries for a mediocre average of 3.2 yards per carry), but Ellington has slowly showed signs of improving every week as his snap count increases.
In the Week 5 victory over the Carolina Panthers, Ellington saw a season-high seven carries for 52 yards and four receptions for another 31 yards. Pick up the Arizona backup if you have Mendenhall or if you are in a deeper league looking to add depth.