While targets were certainly abound in week five, reception percentages were down among the top receivers compared to week four’s Target Monsters.
It was nice to see all of the elite receivers get a heavy dose of looks this week, but also a scary one in that Odell Beckham Jr. went down with a fractured ankle, abruptly putting an end to his season. Several running backs also got in on the target action this week, including Le’Veon Bell and Melvin Gordon, among others.
We’ll take a look at some of the top fantasy Target Monsters throughout the NFL during week five. To be considered a ‘Target Monster,’ a player needs to be targeted more than seven times within the given week. Hopefully this breakdown will give you insight as to which players to gravitate toward while assembling or tweaking your own roster.
In week four, Andy Dalton got A.J. Green involved in the passing game for the first time all season. That trend continued in week five as Dalton targeted Green 13 times and connected on seven of them for a whopping 189-yards and a touchdown. Only Antonio Brown saw more looks than A.J. Green this week with an astounding 19 targets. Brown hauled in 10 of those targets for 157-yards, but the Pittsburgh Steelers still lost to the Jacksonville Jaguars 30-9 and looked wildly inefficient. Teammate Le’Veon Bell caught all 10 targets that were thrown his way, but it only amounted to 46 total yards.
DeAndre Hopkins is proving to be a mainstay on the Target Monsters list as he proved again to be Deshaun Watson’s favorite guy on the field, splashing three touchdowns on 12 targets. That said, Hopkins only caught 4-of-12 balls thrown his way for a 33% catch rate. Surely, fantasy owners didn’t complain being that he crossed the chalk line multiple times. Receiver Davante Adams surprised everyone by playing this week after taking a crushing helmet blow last week. Adams returned in grand fashion though, helping lead the Packers to a victory over the Cowboys by putting up a 7-66-2 stat line. With not many options at the TE position this year, Travis Kelce continues to look like the best in the business as he again neared 100-yards by securing 73% of his targets. Surprisingly, Alex Smith and company are certainly turning heads this season with their explosive offense.
Although T.Y. Hilton didn’t reach the end zone, he burned the San Francisco 49ers on numerous plays to the tune of 177-yards on nine targets. San Francisco’s tight end George Kittle surprised many in the same game by also catching 7-of-9 passes for 83 total yards and a touchdown. The 49ers have played some close games this season and it’s surprising that they haven’t pulled off a win yet. While the Oakland Raiders were all the rage in the Bay Area during the offseason, the 49ers are making their case to get back into the conversation. Both Pierre Garcon and Marquise Goodwin proved that point by combining for over 200 total yards on 22 targets.
While Cam Newton may have gotten off to a sluggish start this season and Kelvin Benjamin hasn’t proved to be the number one receiver we had all hoped, Devin Funchess has come alive and is garnering attention after securing 88% of his targets and scoring another touchdown this week. Michael Crabtree continues to do Michael Crabtree things no matter who’s under center in Oakland. Crab went 6-of-8 for 82-yards and another touchdown. He’s easily the most trustworthy receiver on the Raiders roster and should never leave your starting lineup unless he sits.
Both Melvin Gordon and Christian McCaffrey secured targets out of the backfield to make a difference for their respective team. Gordon caught 6-of-8 passes and scored twice, while McCaffrey scored once on 5-of-7 targets. With Redskins’ Chris Thompson on a bye week, both running backs filled the Target Monster receiving void nicely.
Hunter Henry is proving to be an every other week option and can’t fully be trusted as a tight end option. However, this week he was targeted seven times and turned it into 31-yards and a touchdown. Right now, the Chargers have too many receiving options for anyone outside of Keenan Allen to be fully target relevant. Meanwhile, Allen himself had a quiet week, only catching 33% of his targets for 67-yards. Chicago tight end Zach Miller seems to get a steady diet of targets from whichever quarterback is under center at Soldier Field. Miller, along with the other Zach (Ertz), both scored touchdowns this week. While Zach Ertz remains a TE1, Miller is still a hit or miss player.
In week six, byes will sideline receivers for Buffalo, Cincinnati, Dallas and Seattle. The key Target Monsters that you’ll need to replace include A.J. Green, Dez Bryant, Doug Baldwin and Jimmy Graham, to a lesser degree.