Atlanta Falcons running back Cordarrelle Patterson
Atlanta Falcons running back Cordarrelle Patterson (84) runs 10-yard for a touchdown against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers during the first half of an NFL football game Sunday, Sept. 19, 2021, in Tampa, Fla. (AP Photo/Jason Behnken)

Week 5 Fantasy Football Outlook

Nathan Hursh

The football has been weird this season. To my eye, there are plenty of good teams but not one super great team. Fantasy-wise, things have been a bit strange too. Yes, the Derrick Henry’s and Tyreke Hills of the world are still top fantasy guys. On the other hand, who would’ve thought Cooper Kupp would be the number one wide receiver this far into the season? Who would have thought that Jalen Hurts would be the third-best fantasy quarterback? Not me. In today’s outlook, I will look at some unexpected heroes and tell you whether it’s real or not. If not, now might be a good time to trade.

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Jalen Hurts
We’ll start with Hurts. I have to say, although I didn’t like Hurts as a fantasy starter at the beginning of the year, I do like him now. First off, the Eagles aren’t good. Hurts has ample opportunity at piling up garbage points. That is mostly what he’s done this season. Passing-wise, he has been solid. His completion percentage is up 14 percent this season (from 52 to 66.2). He is also racking up passing yards. He is not throwing many interceptions. On the rushing side, he is averaging over six yards per carry. I may not love Hurts, the franchise quarterback, but I do like him as a fantasy asset. This week against Carolina will be tough. Once again though, he may have a chance to rack up the garbage points.

Sam Darnold
Let’s look at Sam Darnold. As of right now, Darnold has been the fifth-best fantasy quarterback this season. I don’t buy nor do I think he is worth the pickup. Yes, so far with Carolina, Darnold currently has career-highs in completion percentage and QBR. That said, he still has as many turnovers as touchdown passes. The real thing that has been carrying Darnold’s fantasy season has been his four rushing touchdowns. I’m sorry, but Darnold getting one rushing touchdown per game is unsustainable over a full season. For Darnold to be a fantasy stud, he needs to be a passer, not a runner. That has not quite happened yet.

Daniel Jones
How about Daniel Jones, the number six overall fantasy quarterback? Personally, I like Jones more than Darnold but less than Hurts. Like both, running has been a big part of his game this season. Jones is a solid running quarterback no doubt. Passing wise, he has looked as good as he ever has. His QBR, yards per attempt, and completion percentage are all currently career highs. Like Hurts, he will have plenty of garbage time opportunities. Would I start Jones right now? Probably not. That said, as a backup or bye week fill-in, selecting Jones would not be a terrible idea.

Cordarrelle Patterson
Next up is Cordarrelle Patterson. In standard PPR leagues, Patterson is the number three running back overall. Although I don’t think that type of elite production will be maintained over the full season, I do think he will be solid, perhaps in the flex spot. As far as Atlanta is concerned, they are a mess offensively. Matt Ryan looks washed. Calvin Ridley isn’t playing this week. The Kyle Pitts excitement has been quieted. As of right now, Patterson is the GUY in Atlanta. If you have him, he is a must start in the near future. As I said, his current production does not seem sustainable over the course of a full season. For now, though, let Patterson eat.

Deebo Samuel
Is Deebo Samuel legit? In short, yes. This season, Samuel is just one target short (43) of his targets mark last season (44). That is in three fewer games. As the current number three fantasy wide receiver, Samuel has been a straight-up stud. His yards per reception are way up. He has already matched his career-high in touchdowns. With the targets he’s currently averaging per game (10.75) Samuel really does look like a top end wideout. I don’t know if he’ll finish third overall among receivers, but he will definitely finish in the top ten.

DJ Moore
DJ Moore has always been solid. In 2019 and 2020, he surpassed the 1,000-yard mark. This season, he will more than likely to do that again. The reason Moore has been the fourth-best wide receiver this season though has been his ability to score touchdowns. At three receiving TDs this season, Moore is already one away from tying his career-high. Targets-wise, Moore is the Panthers’ number one guy. Receptions-wise, he will at least get near the 100 mark. If able to score touchdowns consistently, Moore will be a top-five receiver by the season’s end.

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