Fantasy Football Week 6 Sleepers and Reaches: Players That May Surprise

Nathan WaddellCorrespondent IOctober 15, 2010

Matt Cassel Tops the List of QB Options
Matt Cassel Tops the List of QB OptionsMatt Sullivan/Getty Images

As Week 6 rolls around, it is time to take a serious look at your fantasy football squad. Do you still have under-preforming "name players" in your lineup while some of your bench players are blowing up? Stop the insanity and get those performing players in your lineup!

Let's take a look at some players that may be available on your waiver wire if you need a one week spot start, and also at players that may be on your bench that should be in your starting line up in Week 6.


Joe Flacco, BAL - Flacco has been anything but consistent this year, but turned in a solid performance against a weak secondary in Week 3.

The New England Patriots defense has been anything but shutdown through their first four games, giving up 272 yards and nearly two touchdowns per week.  In addition, the Patriots are giving up the fourth-most fantasy points to quarterbacks at 17 per game.


Matt Cassel, KC - This is will probably be one of the few times, and maybe the last, that Cassel will appear in a reaches and sleepers column.  But the situation in Week 6 is ideal, and with QB Aaron Rodgers possibly missing a start, and quarterbacks Carson Palmer and Ryan Fitzpatrick on a bye, you may need a bye week filler.

The Houston Texans defense is the NFL's worst defense against the pass, giving up 330 yards and over two touchdowns per game.  Cassel has yet to throw for more than 250 yards in a single game thus far, so his upside is limited.  But if you're in need of a reach at quarterback in Week 6, Cassel merits consideration.


Vince Young, TEN - Young is being used as a game manager, and nothing more.  He's yet to throw for more than 200 yards, but has thrown for at least one touchdown in every week but one.  Young has limited his mistakes this year, throwing an interception in only one game.

Young faces the Jacksonville Jaguars defense, which has allowed 282 yards and over two touchdowns a game.  If Jacksonville can keep the game competitive, Young should have increased opportunities to throw as the game progresses.


Honorable Mentions:

Mark Sanchez (@ DEN)

David Garrard (v. TEN)


Running Back

Tampa Bay RBs - There are four viable running backs in Tampa Bay, which conversely means there are no running backs in Tampa Bay.  Of the bunch, RB Cadillac Williams seems the most likely to produce based solely on opportunities given.  But RB Earnest Graham provided a spark last week in the receiving game, and RB LeGarrette Blount is a goal line specialist that could snipe a touchdown.

The New Orleans Saints rushing defense is giving up an average of 20 fantasy points to opposing running backs on 118 yards, and nearly a touchdown per game.


Mike Hart, IND - RBs Joseph Addai and Donald Brown were both listed as questionable on Thursday's practice report, Addai did not practice, and even if they both play, Hart could still see significant time. After Addai left the game in Week 5, Hart found his way in to the end zone on a nice carry.

Hart would face the Washington Redskins defense which is giving up 112 yards per contest, but less than half a touchdown.  Hart would see plenty of running room with QB Peyton Manning carving up a weak Redskins secondary.


Michael Bush, OAK - Bush stepped in admirably for RB Darren McFadden (hamstring) in Week 5, putting up 104 rushing yards and one touchdown on 26 carries.  All signs point to McFadden missing Week 6 as well, so Bush should see your starting lineup once again.

Bush will face off against a San Francisco 49ers defense that has been disappointing, but not terrible, giving up 111 yards per game, and on average 17 fantasy points per game to running backs.


Ryan Torain, WAS - Torain has averaged 17 carries over the last two games, and appears to be an important piece of the Redskins offense.  While Torain hasn't been an outstanding producer, just 156 yards and one touchdown on 41 carries,  he is a sustaining runner and is being fed the rock.

Torain's opponent on Sunday, the Indianapolis Colts, have had issues containing opponent's rushing attacks the entire year, surrendering 142 yards and a touchdown every week on average.  At worst, Torain should manage at least 70 yards, and will likely find the end zone.


Honorable Mentions:

Felix Jones (@ MIN)

Brandon Jacobs (v. DET)

Mike Tolbert (v. STL)



Wide Receiver

Kenny Britt, TEN - Now that Britt has managed to extricate himself from head coach Jeff Fisher's doghouse, Britt appears to be on track to start once again.  Britt has found the end zone for three consecutive weeks, and there's no reason to suspect anything changes in Week 6.

The Jacksonville Jaguars pass defense has been downright awful: last the league in pass touchdowns to wide receivers, 12, and third-worst in yards given up to wide receivers at 298 yards per game.   Not surprisingly, the Jaguars give up the most fantasy points to wide receivers, averaging 31 points per contest.


Dwayne Bowe, KC - Bowe dropped an easy touchdown in Week 5, and must find a way to atone for his sins come Sunday.  Bowe, even as a No. 1 wide receiver, isn't the most targeted receiver in Kansas City, but should be able to put up a solid performance against the Houston Texans.

The Texans rank second in points allowed to wide receivers, giving up an average of 27 points per game. Of course, Bowe's production is dependent on the ability of noddle-armed QB Matt Cassel to get him the ball, but if Bowe is ever going to have a breakout week, this should be it.


Johnny Knox, CHI - Knox has defined the term "disappointing sleeper" thus far, totaling 272 yards and zero touchdowns on 13 receptions.  If Knox doesn't show some improvement in Week 6, he's probably not worth keeping on your roster.

But Knox should have plenty of opportunity to shine in Week 6, facing off against a Seattle Seahawks secondary that is giving up 319 yards and one touchdown per week to wide receivers.  Of the 24 fantasy points per week given up to wide receivers, Knox should be claim a large chunk for himself.


Honorable Mentions

Hines Ward (v. CLE)

Pierre Garcon (@ WAS)

Derrick Mason (@ NEP)


Tight Ends

Tony Moeaki, KC - For all of the reasons listed above in support of Matt Cassel and Dwanye Bowe, Moeaki makes a good start this week as well.

The Texans give up more fantasy points to tight ends than any other team except the Buffalo Bills, 12 points per week, and Moeaki has proven to be Cassel's favorite target so the production should continue.


Kellen Winslow, TB - Winslow hasn't found the end zone yet, but the New Orleans Saints are giving 8.6 fantasy points per week to tight ends, and Winslow has not yet turned in a goose egg.  If you're in a spot and need a decent matchup play for this week, Winslow might be your guy.


Honorable Mentions

Greg Olsen (v. SEA)

Andrew Quarless (v. MIA)


Those those in deeper leagues that need someone to take a shot on, here are some deeper sleepers and reaches with good matchups that you can take a shot on:

Quarterback:  Jason Campbell, David Garrard, Josh Freeman

Running back:  Darren Sproles, Earnest Graham, Chris Ivory/LaDell Betts, Deji Karim, Jerome Harrison, Mike Bell.

Wide Receiver: Chris Chambers, Danario Alexander, TJ Housmandzadeh, Chansi Stuckey, Emmanuel Sanders, Mike Thomas, Craig Davis, Anthony Armstrong, Nate Burleson, James Jones.


For more fantasy football chatter, you can follow Nathan on Twitter @NathanWaddell.