Fantasy Football Rankings for Week 5: Wide Receivers
As we begin the part of the season with bye weeks, this is the first of four straight weeks with six teams on a bye.
The top receivers on bye this week are Dez Bryant, Brandon Marshall, Santana Moss and Anquan Boldin. Of course, Miles Austin is on bye as well, but he hasn't played since Week 2.
Unfortunately for the Texans, this is not their bye week. In fact, they don't have their bye until Week 11. So, in other words, they are expecting to be without stud receiver Andre Johnson, who had surgery on his hamstring, for the next three games.
If you don't own Johnson and have one (or more) of the top receivers on bye this week, Johnson's absence from the lineup may have provided an additional option to you on the waiver wire with someone like Jacoby Jones or Kevin Walter, both off whom should expect to see more targets with Johnson out.
That said, the Texans will likely run the ball and rely on Owen Daniels and Jacob Casey more than usual.
Here are some more notes on wide receivers that will play in Week 5:
For a fourth straight game, Detroit's Calvin Johnson has scored two touchdowns in a game. With eight scores on the season, one-third of his receptions (24) have been for touchdowns. Only three teams have allowed fewer touchdowns to a wide receiver than the Bears, who have allowed only two scores to wideouts and both of those scores were in Week 2 against the Saints.
How many TDs will Calvin Johnson have against the Bears?
Johnson's Lions teammate Titus Young, who was on this week's waiver-wire pickups list, has averaged over 60 yards in his past three games and has more targets (20) than Nate Burleson (15) during that span.
For the second time this season, Bengals rookie receiver A.J. Green had 100-plus yards in a game with his 118-yard performance against the Bills. On the season, Green has 19 receptions for 312 yards and two touchdowns.
As amazing as Green has been this season, fellow rookie Julio Jones performed as well or better. Jones finished with 127 yards against the Seahawks and has back-to-back 100-yard performances. Jones is on pace for a full season of 96 receptions for 1,368 yards.
New England's Wes Welker leads the NFL in receptions (40), receiving yards (616) and trails only Megatron in touchdowns with five. Based on data from Pro Football Reference, no player has ever had more receiving yards in his team's first four games of the season and only 13 players have had 500-plus receiving yards in his team's first four games.
Although he had only two receptions last week, Tennessee's Nate Washington had 62 receiving yards last week against the Cleveland. The only other wide receivers to have 60-plus receiving yards in four games this season are Welker, Mike Wallace and Larry Fitzgerald. This week, Washington draws a tough matchup against the Steelers, who have allowed the fewest fantasy points to opposing wide receivers this season.
Denver's Eric Decker has had at least 48 receiving yards in each game this season and had his second two-touchdown performance of the year last week. On the season, Decker leads the team in receptions (20), receiving yards (270) and touchdowns (four). Teammate Brandon Lloyd, who missed Week 2's game, had a season-high 136 yards last week.
Giants receiver Mario Manningham returned from concussion in Week 4, but due to sloppy route-running, he was on the sidelines in the second half in two-receiver sets instead of Victor Cruz, another one of the receivers on our list of pickups this week. Manningham finished the game with only one reception for 10 yards.
Here are my top 50 receivers for Week 5:
1. Calvin Johnson, Lions (vs CHI)
2. Wes Welker, Patriots (vs NYJ)
3. Greg Jennings, Packers (at ATL)
4. Hakeem Nicks, Giants (vs SEA)
5. Larry Fitzgerald, Cardinals (at MIN)
6. Roddy White, Falcons (vs GB)
7. Steve Smith, Panthers (vs NO)
8. Vincent Jackson, Chargers (at DEN)
9. Mike Wallace, Steelers (vs TEN)
10. Dwayne Bowe, Chiefs (at IND)
11. DeSean Jackson, Eagles (at BUF)
12. Santonio Holmes, Jets (at NE)
13. Julio Jones, Falcons (vs GB)
14. Steve Johnson, Bills (vs PHI)
15. Jeremy Maclin, Eagles (at BUF)
16. Brandon Lloyd, Broncos (vs SD)
17. Reggie Wayne, Colts (vs KC)
18. A.J. Green, Bengals (at JAC)
19. Mike Williams, Buccaneers (at SF)
20. Percy Harvin, Vikings (vs ARI)
21. Eric Decker, Broncos (vs SD)
22. Jordy Nelson, Packers (at ATL)
23. Sidney Rice, Seahawks (at NYG)
24. Lance Moore, Saints (at CAR)
25. Mike Thomas, Jaguars (vs CIN)
26. Denarius Moore, Raiders (at HOU)
27. Mario Manningham, Giants (vs SEA)
28. David Nelson, Bills (vs PHI)
29. Plaxico Burress, Jets (at NE)
30. Marques Colston, Saints (at CAR)
31. Nate Washington, Titans (at PIT)
32. Robert Meachem, Saints (at CAR)
33. Pierre Garcon, Colts (vs KC)
34. Deion Branch, Patriots (vs NYJ)
35. Johnny Knox, Bears (at DET)
36. Antonio Brown, Steelers (vs TEN)
37. Jacoby Jones, Texans (vs OAK)
38. Victor Cruz, Giants (vs SEA)
39. Nate Burleson, Lions (vs CHI)
40. Kevin Walter, Texans (vs OAK)
41. Titus Young, Lions (vs CHI)
42. Michael Crabtree, 49ers (vs TB)
43. Jacoby Ford, Raiders (at HOU)
44. Malcom Floyd, Chargers (at DEN)
45. Jerome Simpson, Bengals (at JAC)
46. Austin Collie, Colts (vs KC)
47. Devery Henderson, Saints (at CAR)
48. Early Doucet, Cardinals (at MIN)
49. Steve Breaston, Chiefs (at IND)
50. Michael Jenkins, Vikings (vs ARI)
Please note that these are our initial rankings for the week. We will update our rankings, as necessary, throughout the week. To get the most up-to-date rankings and see rankings for other positions, visit our fantasy section here.
If interested, here is our free Week 5 fantasy football contest.
Good luck in Week 5!
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