Fantasy Football Week 5 Rankings: Rounding Up Top 50 Players

David KenyonFeatured ColumnistOctober 2, 2018

FOXBOROUGH, MA - SEPTEMBER 30:  Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots gestures at the line of scrimmage during the second half against the Miami Dolphins at Gillette Stadium on September 30, 2018 in Foxborough, Massachusetts.  (Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)
Maddie Meyer/Getty Images

Week 5 of the NFL season will begin to separate contenders from pretenders in fantasy football; it's imperative to start winning now if you aren't already.

Fortunately for us in fantasy, only the Chicago Bears and Tampa Bay Buccaneers have a bye. Though a six-touchdown performance has raised Mitch Trubisky's value, Jordan Howard, Mike Evans and DeSean Jackson are the prime options who won't be available this weekend.

All things considered, that's not a horrible outlook. Most of the typical top fantasy players will be suiting up Sunday and Monday.

Using standard scoring as the guide, we've ranked the 50 best options for the upcoming critical weekend in fantasy.


Top 50 Players—Week 5

  1. Tom Brady, QB, NE (vs. IND)
  2. Drew Brees, QB, NO (vs. WAS)
  3. Aaron Rodgers, QB, GB (at DET)
  4. Matt Ryan, QB, ATL (at PIT)
  5. Ben Roethlisberger, QB, PIT (vs. ATL)
  6. Jared Goff, QB, LAR (at SEA)
  7. Cam Newton, QB, CAR (vs. NYG)
  8. Philip Rivers, QB, LAC (vs. OAK)
  9. Matthew Stafford, QB, DET (vs. GB)
  10. Patrick Mahomes, QB, KC (vs. JAX)
  11. Deshaun Watson, QB, HOU (vs. DAL)
  12. Kirk Cousins, QB, MIN (at PHI)
  13. Alex Smith, QB, WAS (at NO)
  14. Carson Wentz, QB, PHI (vs. MIN)
  15. Marcus Mariota, QB, TEN (vs. BUF)
  16. Andy Dalton, QB, CIN (vs. MIA)
  17. Todd Gurley, RB, LAR (at SEA)
  18. Antonio Brown, WR, PIT (vs. ATL)
  19. Ezekiel Elliott, RB, DAL (at HOU)
  20. David Johnson, RB, ARI (at SF)
  21. Blake Bortles, QB, JAC (at KC)
  22. Case Keenum, DEN, QB (at NYJ)
  23. Alvin Kamara, RB, NO (vs. WAS)
  24. Russell Wilson, QB, SEA (vs. LAR)
  25. Joe Flacco, QB, BAL (at CLE)
  26. Andrew Luck, QB, IND (at NE)
  27. Christian McCaffrey, RB, CAR (vs. NYG)
  28. Baker Mayfield, QB, CLE (vs. BAL)
  29. Derek Carr, QB, OAK (at LAC)
  30. Melvin Gordon, RB, LAC (vs. OAK)
  31. Dak Prescott, QB, DAL (at HOU)
  32. Ryan Tannehill, QB, MIA (at CIN)
  33. Julio Jones, WR, ATL (at PIT)
  34. Josh Rosen, QB, ARI (at SF)
  35. Michael Thomas, WR, NO (vs. WAS)
  36. JuJu Smith-Schuster, WR, PIT (vs. ATL)
  37. Eli Manning, QB, NYG (at CAR)
  38. DeAndre Hopkins, WR, HOU (vs. DAL)
  39. Joe Mixon, RB, CIN (vs. MIA)
  40. Odell Beckham Jr., WR, NYG (at CAR)
  41. A.J. Green, WR, CIN (vs. MIA)
  42. James Conner, RB, PIT (vs. ATL)
  43. Josh Allen, QB, BUF (vs. TEN)
  44. Saquon Barkley, RB, NYG (at CAR)
  45. Davante Adams, WR, GB (at DET)
  46. LeSean McCoy, RB, BUF (vs. TEN)
  47. Brandin Cooks, WR, LAR (at SEA)
  48. Sony Michel, RB, NE (vs. IND)
  49. Golden Tate, WR, DET (vs. GB)
  50. Rob Gronkowski, TE, NE (vs. IND)


Ben Roethlisberger, QB, Pittsburgh Steelers

PITTSBURGH, PA - SEPTEMBER 30: Ben Roethlisberger #7 of the Pittsburgh Steelers walks off the field in the second half during the game against the Baltimore Ravens at Heinz Field on September 30, 2018 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Joe Sargent/Get
Joe Sargent/Getty Images

Yes, Pittsburgh is struggling. That's almost an additional reason to start Ben Roethlisberger, who is relied upon heavily whenever the Steelers face a deficit of any kind.

Since the high-powered Atlanta Falcons offense and injury-filled secondary is coming to town, there will be plenty of points scored.

This season, "Big Ben" is averaging 353.5 yards and two touchdowns. Over the last three contests, Atlanta has surrendered 356 yards and three scores per game through the air.

From the Falcons perspective, the issues have coincided with injuries to safeties Keanu Allen and Ricardo Allen. Star linebacker Deion Jones has also been sidelined along with cornerback Justin Bethel. You name the offensive skill position, and those injuries have positively affected receiving numbers.

All signs point to a massive day for Roethlisbergereven if Pittsburgh loses.


Saquon Barkley, RB, New York Giants

EAST RUTHERFORD, NEW JERSEY - SEPTEMBER 30: Saquon Barkley #26 of the New York Giants scores a touchdown in the fourth Quarter against the New Orleans Saints during their game at MetLife Stadium on September 30, 2018 in East Rutherford, New Jersey. (Photo
Al Bello/Getty Images

Considering his weekly volume, Saquon Barkley should be in lineups simply based on his potential to break a big run or score a touchdown.

If you're conflicted because of the upcoming date against the Carolina Panthers, that's OK. But don't take him outespecially after coach Pat Shurmur recently said he wants Barkley to get more touches.

"I wish I would've called more runs," Shurmur said, per Ralph Vacchiano of SNY.tv following the 33-18 Week 4 loss to the New Orleans Saints. "That's the reality of that, because I think the ball in Saquon's hands is a good thing."

Though the Panthers are typically unfriendly to running backs, both Ezekiel Elliott and Gio Bernard salvaged inefficient days with a touchdown. Barkley also has extreme value as a checkdown receiverdon't even thinking about benching the rookie in points-per-reception (PRR) leagues.

Anticipating a 20-point day from Barkley would be unwise, but his floor remains appealing opposite a sturdy defense.


Brandin Cooks, WR, Los Angeles Rams

LOS ANGELES, CA - SEPTEMBER 27: Wide receiver Brandin Cooks #12 of the Los Angeles Rams celebrates his touchdown to take a 28-17 lead over the Minnesota Vikings in the second quarter at Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum on September 27, 2018 in Los Angeles, C
Harry How/Getty Images

Sean McVay's offense is sensational to watch, and Brandin Cooks is a primary beneficiary of the head coach's brilliance. Through four games, the speedy receiver has collected 26 catches for 452 yards and one touchdown.

Meanwhile, the Seattle Seahawks have been relatively stingy against opposing receivers, save for Emmanuel Sanders' day in the season opener. How much might that narrative change following the injury to All-Pro safety Earl Thomas?

Although the Seahawks still have Bradley McDougald patrolling the back end, there should be big-play opportunities for Rams receivers.

Cooks—who is averaging 17.4 yards per catch—is a must-start wideout anyway, but his upside is particularly intriguing this week.


Follow Bleacher Report writer David Kenyon on Twitter @Kenyon19_BR.