Buy Sell Hold - Week 5
by The Football Fix
BUY - WR CeeDee Lamb, Cowboys
After an electric Week 1, Ceedee’s targets have dropped off considerably, seeing just 8 targets in his last two games combined. He’s currently the WR26 overall after catching just 2-of-5 targets for 13 yards on Sunday.
Lamb’s decrease in targets can likely be chalked up to the team simply not throwing the ball as much in recent weeks. Dak has 48 attempts in Dallas’ last two games combined, whereas in Week 1 he had 58 total attempts. The Cowboys have simply opted to run more while playing with positive Game Script. Still, this offense ranks 14th in Neutral Pass Frequency and 11th in Pace of Play, so it’s not like CeeDee’s in a bad situation. He’s just played in Game Scripts that generally don’t fuel much wide receiver production.
We know that CeeDee is an extremely talented young player who’s already shown us that he can produce explosive weeks in fantasy. After two really quiet weeks, I think now could be a good time to buy him in all formats.
HOLD - RB Chase Edmonds, Cardinals
James Conner stealing all of the Cardinals’ goal-line touchdowns can be frustrating to watch if you’re a Chase Edmonds owner, but I can’t say I’m surprised. Edmonds profiles as this team’s dynamic speed-space back, with Conner playing as the pounder between the tackles.
Despite not scoring a single touchdown all season, Edmonds has managed to rank as the RB11 overall in PPR leagues through 4 weeks. That’s low-end RB1 overall production, again without a single touchdown. That’s because he ranks 8th amongst all backs in Weighted Opportunities.
Edmonds has also established a floor of about 12 PPR fantasy points/game, which is one of the more consistent floors we’ve seen in the league so far this season. Edmonds is due for some positive touchdown regression here soon, which should keep him in this stable weekly-RB2 scoring range for the foreseeable future.
SELL - RB/WR, Cordarrelle Patterson, Falcons
Patterson has been really fun in the last few weeks, most notably with a 34.6 PPR point performance against Washington this past Sunday. He currently ranks as the RB2 overall in scoring, which just seems crazy to me. As dynamic of a player as he is, he simply can’t maintain these levels of efficiency.
Patterson is averaging about 7 carries and 5.5 targets/game. That’s still decent usage considering it’s somewhat similar to Edmonds, the last player we just discussed. But unlike Edmonds, Patterson has five touchdowns in his last three games. His +8.4 Expected Fantasy Points/Game differential is 154% higher than the second-highest point differential amongst all running backs.
Patterson could still produce weekly-RB2 numbers for the rest of the season, but if you can sell him high off his boom week knowing that this level of production is unsustainable, you should.
BUY - WR Calvin Ridley, Falcons
The usage and talent simply don’t align with the production we’d expect from Ridley through 4 weeks. Despite seeing the 5th most total targets, having the 6th most Air Yards, and the 2nd highest Air Yards Share amongst all receivers, Ridley ranks as just the WR22 overall in PPR scoring.
This is really similar usage to what Ridley saw last season in Atlanta when he finished as the WR5 overall. He just hasn’t been able to connect with Matt Ryan to the same degree of success this year, which can be seen by his 289 Unrealized Air Yards, the 2nd highest total amongst all wideouts.
The usage is there for Ridley and we’ve seen the production there before. He’s going to continue to see a high volume of valuable targets so naturally, his production should bounce back sooner rather than later.
HOLD - TE Dawson Knox, Bills
As is the case with almost every year, the tight-end landscape is pretty dry. Dawson Knox wasn’t being drafted in most seasonal leagues, but ranks as the TE6 in both overall and weekly PPR scoring through four weeks. That’s great value for someone who you were getting for free.
Knox is seeing 5 targets/game, which ranks 15th amongst all tight ends. Those aren’t great raw target numbers, but when you dig a little deeper, he’s seeing high-value targets. He’s currently tied for the 2nd-most Red Zone TE Targets with 6, which is why he has 4 TDs to his name already this season.
Knox’s touchdown rate is sure to decrease here soon, but he’s not necessarily someone who I’d sell because of that. The Bills have the highest neutral pass rate in the league again this season, so they really want to sling it. Having the top tight end in such a prolific offense is worth holding onto, even if those touchdowns won’t be there as frequently.
SELL - QB Russell Wilson, Seahawks
You need to be a little more careful about this one. Russell Wilson has been highly efficient for almost his entire career, so we shouldn’t be surprised that he’s been playing efficiently yet again in 2021. But even for his standards, Wilson’s efficiency to start the year is probably unsustainable.
Per PFF, Wilson’s +35 total Fantasy Points Over Expected is by far the highest amongst all quarterbacks this season. That’s largely fueled by his league-best Yards/Attempt and top-5 TD Rate. His +12.91 Supporting Cast Efficiency is also the highest amongst all quarterbacks, meaning that his receivers have been highly efficient in their own right through things like YAC.
At the end of the day, the Seahawks still have a below-average neutral pass rate and simply won’t let Russ cook. If his efficiency regresses back to the mean, his total fantasy output could take a big hit because that passing volume just isn’t there.