This weekend I wandered through the fantasy desert. I lost every game, in all of my leagues and many of my picks for last week’s article didn’t perform up to my expectations. I questioned all of my decisions and have just wallowed in self pity since Tuesday morning. Any fantasy addict knows this feeling. We’ve all been here. But the opportunity to bounce back is what keeps us all playing. The chance to win! That team who were in last place, but just went on a 4 game win streak and now are in playoff contention. That opportunity to trade for a player before the deadline and maybe save your team. It’s what we live for. It’s why we keep going and try to make it out of the desert to the green oasis of a W. So here are my picks for helping you out of the BYE week desert this week (the Bengals, Cardinals, Colts, Jags, Eagles and Giants are all resting.)
Ryan Fitzpatrick (at Carolina Panthers)
It’s Halloween week and magic is in the air… Fitz-Magic that is. Through the air. Much to the joy of Bucs fans, Ryan Fitzpatrick, who memorably led the NFL in passing yards through the first 3 weeks of the season is back under center in Tampa. The Panthers defense have given up a lot of fantasy points to opposing quarterbacks and I expect Fitzy to come out all guns blazing.
Baker Mayfield (vs. Kansas City Chiefs)
Baker is a dawg that is officially off the leash. No more Hue holding him back, no more Todd Haley calling his plays. Expect Mayfield, who will no doubt be looking to put a dent in the Patrick Mahomes hype train, to relish the chance to show off against a Kansas defense that has given up more yards than the team has gained on offense…
Trenton Cannon (at Miami Dolphins)
With Bilal Powell on IR, Cannon is looking to again be the primary backup for Isaiah Crowell. After coming on against the Vikings, Cannon took over on passing downs and hauled in 4 of 5 targets for 69 yards. He could be a cheeky flex play if you are thin on the ground this week.
Aaron Jones (at New England Patriots)
Jones owners hope their stint in the fantasy desert is finally coming to an end. After weeks of frustrating misuse by Mike McCarthy, last week Jones was finally offered a sniff of lead back work. Leading the team with 12 carries he found 86 yards and a score, against the Rams defensive line no less. It’s time to finally consider Jones lineup worthy.
Courtland Sutton (vs.Houston Texans)
I’ll be honest, I hadn’t even heard of Courtland Sutton until recently. But with Demaryius Thomas being traded to the team that the Broncos play this week, Courtland Sutton has suddenly jumped onto people’s radars. After getting 78 yards off 3 receptions last week, it seems Sutton could fill Thomas’ hole very quickly on Denver’s offense.
DJ Moore (vs. Tampa Bay Buccaneers)
Moore’s target are increasing along with his yardage totals. 90 yards off 5 catches last game, and over 300 yards of total yards from scrimmage over the past 4 weeks. With Torrey Smith battling an injury and against a Bucs defense that has given up the most fantasy points to opposing QB/WR combos I expect to see Moore ball out.
Hayden Hurst (vs. Pittsburgh Steelers)
Steelers give up the 4th most points to fantasy tight ends and Hurst’s production has been on the rise. He cemented his presence on the scene with a TD last week and will look to keep Joe Flacco’s attention this week. Consider him a boom or bust fill in at a thin position group
David Njoku (vs. Kansas City Chiefs)
Njoku was apparently still recovering from his knee injury last week as he failed to appear on the stat line against the Steelers. But with Baker of the leash I expect a bounce back from Njoku and a return to his previous production going forwards.
Redskins (vs. Atlanta Falcons)
Yeah I know, I’m a homer picking the Skins, but let’s be clear, this is a good unit that is still being underrated but a lot of fantasy owners. Quinton Dunbar is back from injury, Ha Ha Clinton-Dix just moved from Green Bay to start next to ball hawk DJ Swearinger, and the run defense has held 3 of the league’s best running backs to less than 100 yards over the last 3 weeks, combined.
Our NFC East reporter is Chris Milner who covers Redskins, Eagles, Cowboys, and Giants. Chris is a Washington Redskins fan who has followed the game since 2011. He is one of our fantasy football correspondents and also co-hosts the ‘Same Level Fantasy Football’ podcast. Follow him on Twitter @chrismilner