Fantasy Football Week 5: Flex Rankings, Waiver-Wire Targets and Projections

Rob GoldbergFeatured ColumnistOctober 2, 2017

HOUSTON, TX - OCTOBER 01:  Will Fuller #15 of the Houston Texans catches a pass for a touchdown defended by LeShaun Sims #36 of the Tennessee Titans in the third quarter at NRG Stadium on October 1, 2017 in Houston, Texas.  (Photo by Tim Warner/Getty Images)
Tim Warner/Getty Images

Although Week 4 isn't yet finished, plenty of people are already looking forward to Week 5.

It was a rough week for injuries, with key players like Julio Jones, Dalvin Cook, Marcus Mariota, Derek Carr leaving their games early. Other stars stayed healthy but came through with dud performances to hurt fantasy lineups.

Luckily, there is always next week and the opportunity for better showings with your fantasy team. Adding some key flex targets off the waiver wire could also go a long way.

Note: Ownership percentages from ESPN.com.

         

Top Additions

Devin Funchess, WR, Carolina Panthers (owned in 10.8 percent of leagues)

FOXBORO, MA - OCTOBER 01:  Devin Funchess #17 of the Carolina Panthers celebrates scoring a touchdown during the third quarter against the New England Patriots at Gillette Stadium on October 1, 2017 in Foxboro, Massachusetts.  (Photo by Jim Rogash/Getty I
Jim Rogash/Getty Images

With Greg Olsen out and Kelvin Benjamin inconsistent, Devin Funchess has stepped up as a top target for the Carolina Panthers.

He had a huge showing in Week 4, scoring two touchdowns from seven catches for 70 yards. Although Benjamin led the team with 104 yards, he was only targeted four times (and caught all of them). Meanwhile, Cam Newton looked Funchess' way nine times, including a couple in the end zone.

This came after earning 10 targets in Week 3 against the New Orleans Saints.

The former second-round pick has disappeared at times but seems ready to step up for Carolina this season.

          

Will Fuller, WR, Houston Texans (5.9 percent)

You can't count on the Houston Texans to score 57 points every game like on Sunday, when Will Fuller scored two touchdowns in his 2017 debut. However, this offense is clearly much better than it was last season.

Deshaun Watson represents a significant upgrade under center, and receivers are finally getting catchable balls.

While DeAndre Hopkins is still the star, Fuller could be set for a big second season as a speedster who continues to round out his game. The coaching staff will try to get him the ball as much as possible and that could lead to quality numbers.

He might still be a boom-or-bust player, but there will be more big showings before the year is over.

                

Alvin Kamara, RB, New Orleans Saints (17.5 percent)

LONDON, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 01:  Alvin Kamara of the New Orleans Saints is challenged by Cordrea Tankersley of Miami Dolphins during the NFL match between New Orleans Saints and Miami Dolphins at Wembley Stadium on October 1, 2017 in London, England.  (Phot
Clive Rose/Getty Images

There was a lot of excitement surrounding third-round pick Alvin Kamara in the offseason, but it seemed difficult to earn a role in an offense that included established veterans Mark Ingram and Adrian Peterson.

While Peterson is the biggest name of the group, he has just 27 carries and two catches in four games. He can probably be dropped from all fantasy teams.

However, Kamara continues to earn a bigger role and was one of the stars of the Saints' 20-0 win over the Miami Dolphins in London Sunday. The running back finished with 10 catches for 71 yards and a touchdown to go with 25 rushing yards on five carries.

The 15 touches were by far the most of his season, but it's clear he can make a significant impact when he is in the game.

Considering how New Orleans loves to use its running backs in the passing game, he could keep up this production.

           

J.D. McKissic, RB, Seattle Seahawks (0 percent)

Raise your hand if you thought J.D. McKissic would score two touchdowns on Sunday Night Football. OK, raise your hand if you had heard of McKissic before Week 4.

Put your hand down.

The Arkansas State product, who was claimed off waivers in December, had one career carry entering the game but came through with 65 yards on five touches with two touchdowns, becoming one of the top flex scorers of the week.

While his upside was exciting already, his potential got even higher with Chris Carson getting carted off the field late in the game. 

Eddie Lacy will likely still have a role and you shouldn't go overboard on McKissic after just a few big plays, but he certainly looked good against the Indianapolis Colts and now has an opportunity on a top team. He is at least worth a speculative add in all leagues.

              

Latavius Murray, RB, Minnesota Vikings (17.1 percent)

This hasn't been a pretty season for Latavius Murray, who has just 38 rushing yards on 14 carries this season. He had only 17 rushing yards in the first three games.

However, the knee injury to Cook allows Murray to show what he can do with the Vikings.

While he isn't near as dynamic as Cook, Murray did have 12 touchdowns last season with the Oakland Raiders and is a tough runner between the tackles. This could lead to plenty of fantasy points without much competition for touches.

Elijah McGuire had a big game for the New York Jets and Wayne Gallman has upside for the New York Giants, but Murray could have the biggest role going forward.

             

Evan Engram, TE, New York Giants (24.1 percent)

Julio Cortez/Associated Press

Once again, we are looking forward instead of backward. Several tight ends had big games, including Tyler Kroft and A.J. Derby, who each might struggle to top what they did in Week 4. The Tampa Bay Buccaneers duo of Cameron Brate and O.J. Howard is solid, but it's tough to imagine this offense keeping two tight ends fantasy-relevant each week.

However, the opportunity is there for Evan Engram, who continues to earn a bigger role in the offense.

The rookie first-round pick set career highs Sunday in catches (six), yards (62) and targets (11) and is averaging 7.5 targets per game.

In an offense that will continue to throw the ball, Engram could be a consistent producer and his first touchdown will come eventually.

                

Week 5 Flex Rankings and Projected Points (Standard Leagues)

1. Ezekiel Elliott (15)

2. Kareem Hunt (15)

3. Le'Veon Bell (15)

4. Antonio Brown (14)

5. Leonard Fournette (14)

6. Jordy Nelson (14)

7. Todd Gurley (14)

8. Odell Beckham Jr. (13)

9. A.J. Green (13)

10. Mike Evans (12)

11. LeSean McCoy (12)

12. DeAndre Hopkins (12)

13. LeGarrette Blount (12)

14. Larry Fitzgerald (12)

15. Melvin Gordon (11)

16. Stefon Diggs (11)

17. Keenan Allen (11)

18. Jay Ajayi (11)

19. Brandin Cooks (11)

20. Carlos Hyde (11)

21. Doug Baldwin (11)

22. Tyreek Hill (11)

23. DeMarco Murray (10)

24. Rob Gronkowski (10)

25. Dez Bryant (10)

26. Jordan Howard (10)

27. T.Y. Hilton (10)

28. Lamar Miller (10)

29. Adam Thielen (9)

30. Marshawn Lynch (9)

31. DeVante Parker (9)

32. Christian McCaffrey (9)

33. Travis Kelce (9)

34. Joe Mixon (9)

35. Mike Gillislee (9)

36. Michael Crabtree (9)

37. Davante Adams (9)

38. Jonathan Stewart (8)

39. Bilal Powell (8)

40. Devin Funchess (8)

41. Mike Wallace (7)

42. Doug Martin (7)

43. Frank Gore (7)

44. Jarvis Landry (7)

45. Tarik Cohen (7)

46. Chris Hogan (7)

47. Latavius Murray (7)

48. Zach Ertz (7)

49. Tyrell Williams (7)

50. Will Fuller (7)