NFL Week 5 Fantasy Buy/Sell Trade Targets: D’Andre Swift Is Coming
Jorge Lemus/NurPhoto. Pictured: Detroit Lions running back D’Andre Swift (32).
We had another week of running back injuries.
The list of early-round injured running backs now includes Christian McCaffrey, Saquon Barkley, Austin Ekeler, and Nick Chubb. In addition, Kenyan Drake and Chris Carson narrowly avoided major injuries.
This week’s Buy/Sell takes a look at a key running back entering a bye week that you can target to help fill that void.
Here are my favorite buy-lows and sell-highs heading into the Week 5.
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Fantasy Trade Targets
RB, D’Andre Swift, Lions
The league-winning running backs that emerge during the second half of the season usually come from ambiguous backfields.
The Lions rushing attack has been led by 35-year old Adrian Peterson, but Swift has started to work himself back into the rotation after dropping the game-winning touchdown pass in Week 1.
Swift had four receptions, 52 total yards, and a receiving touchdown in the Lions 35-29 loss to the Saints.
Over the first three weeks, Swift’s snap count had declined from 34 to 20 to just six snaps in Week 3. However against the Saints, Swift saw 23 snaps, with Peterson tallying 27.
When the Lions return from their Week 5 bye, Swift will face the Jaguars and Falcons. Both teams rank in the bottom third of the league in running back receptions and receiving yards allowed.
D’Andre Swift could easily be positioning himself as this season’s Miles Sanders down the stretch of the fantasy playoffs.
TE Zach Ertz, Eagles
We use a Bayesian process in fantasy football, and now support buying Ertz after he appeared as a sell just two weeks ago.
Despite the Eagles’ impressive 25-20 road victory against the 49ers, Ertz underwhelmed yet again. He converted five targets into just four receptions and nine total yards.
Ertz saw 59 of the Eagles’ 62 snaps, and faced the NFL’s second-toughest defense against opposing tight ends. With a decimated receiving core, Ertz saw a ton of defensive attention.
Fellow tight end Dallas Goedert is now on the injured reserve with a foot injury, leaving Ertz for all the positional opportunities. As Miles Sanders’ offensive impact increases and wide receivers Jalen Reagor, DeSean Jackson, and Alshon Jeffery return, Ertz’s production will increase as well.
After two difficult upcoming matchups at Pittsburgh and home against the Ravens, the Eagles schedule opens up nicely. Games against the Saints, Browns, and Cowboys (twice) indicate that big weeks are ahead for the veteran tight end.
At fantasy’s most shallow position, I would be looking to buy Ertz in all league formats.
TE, Evan Engram, Giants
It’s time to start buying Giants’ offensive playmakers.
The Giants suffered through the most brutal part of their 2020 schedule. They’ve been almost non-competitive in four straight losses to the Steelers, Bears, Niners, and Rams. Those teams have a combined record of 11-4 this season. However, things drastically improve moving forward, including five of their next six games against NFC East opponents.
I am looking to acquire Giants tight end Evan Engram in all formats.
Engram entered Week 4 with 20 targets (seventh among TEs) on the season, and added 10 more in New York’s 17-9 loss to the Rams.
Here is Engram’s upcoming schedule with their opponent’s respective rankings against tight ends:
- at Dallas (26th)
- Washington (27th)
- at Philadelphia (30th)
- Tampa Bay (11th)
- at Washington (27th)
- Philadelphia (30th)
Engram has just one game this season with more than 35 receiving yards and has yet to score a touchdown.
His week-by-week snap count percentages this season are 94%, 93%, 85%, 84%. That level of opportunity will eventually translate to production. I am bullish on all the Giants receiving options, especially Engram.
Fantasy Sell Candidates
WR, Odell Beckham, Browns
Beckham’s incredible Week 4 performance (five receptions, 154 total yards, three touchdowns) provides a nice selling opportunity.
Cleveland head coach Kevin Stefanski still prefers a run-heavy attack, with the lowest passing percentage (47.1%) of any NFL team through four games. Stefanski is so committed to the run that unknown rusher D’Ernest Johnson saw 13 rushes in Cleveland’s big 49-38 win at Dallas after Nick Chubb left with a knee injury.
Prior to Sunday, Beckham had produced the WR77, WR19, and WR47 performances respectively. Dating back to last year this was only Beckham’s second WR1 performance in the past 18 games.
Coming into this week, quarterback Baker Mayfield ranked 28th among all quarterbacks in passing yardage. In Sunday’s big win? Mayfield threw for 165 yards, and wide receiver Jarvis Landry threw one of the touchdowns to Beckham.
In a run-first, low passing volume offense, look to sell Beckham coming off his huge Week 5 performance.
RB Mike Davis, Panthers
Davis has been fantastic in place of All-Pro Christian McCaffrey. He was the RB9 in Week 3 and the RB7 this past week. He has totaled 15 targets, 13 receptions, and has scored two touchdowns during that time.
The problem? McCaffrey is getting close to returning.
Reports are the McCaffrey could return as soon as Week 6, but more likely Week 7 against the Saints. Depending on how the knowledge of your league mates, they may think they can get another month out of Davis.
With the Panthers earning consecutive wins against the Chargers and Cardinals, the likelihood of a quick return for McCaffrey has been increased. The Panthers will need their franchise back for any type of playoff run, meaning you can’t wait any longer to sell Davis.
I would try to package Davis and a wide receiver/tight end for a positional upgrade.