Game Previews: All Fantasy Relevant Players For Week 5
Cowboys vs. Texans
The Dallas Cowboys defeated the Detroit Lions in a close came in Week 4, improving to 2-2 but there are still many questions to be answered as they visit the Houston Texans this weekend. The Cowboys offense has been quiet all year but QBList looks at what we can expect in Week 5.
Is Dak a streaming option for fantasy owners this week?
QB Dak Prescott has his best fantasy performance of the year in Week 4 with 18 fantasy points using FantasyPros scoring. This week Dak gets a solid match-up, the Texans have given up an alarming ten receiving touchdowns in just 4 weeks, and have surrendered 21 fantasy points per game at the position. If the offensive line can give him some time, this may be his best shot to break out of his funk and post back to back solid games. We haven’t seen Dak use his legs in the red zone yet this year, so if he can add a rushing TD, Dak can be a solid bye week starter this week.
Is this a big week for Zeke Elliott?
Cowboys RB Ezekiel Elliott exploded last week against Dallas but if you were reading our Cowboys previews you would have know that the Lions defense were an incredible match-up for the Cowboys outside zone run attack. This week the opposite is true. The Houston Texans will be the best run defense the Cowboys star has faced so far in 2018. Houston is currently number two overall in rushing DVOA, per Football Outsiders and have only given up one rushing touchdown in four weeks, This will be a long difficult week for Zeke and while we can’t sit him he is not a player you want in your DFS lineups this week.
What have you seen from this Cowboys wide Receiver corps?
The biggest question coming into the season for the Cowboys was who would be the primary receivers in a “Dak Friendly” offense. Last week may have given us some clarity to the plans moving forward. Rookie WR Michael Gallup played in 60% of the snaps on Sunday, a season high, in a game where WR Terrance Williams was a healthy scratch. The Cowboys have relied on three receivers sets this season, 67% of snaps have been with three wides. The Cowboys look to be moving forward with Gallup and WR Cole Beasley joining WR Allen Hurns on the field. This should help Dak in the weeks ahead, as the rotation tightens and he is able to develop chemistry with a smaller set of receivers. I look for this to continue as Dallas works to identify the primary route runners for their young QB. Keep an eye on Gallup. He’s had some drops this year but Dak seems to like him and he could show value moving forward.
How is the TE position looking this season?
It’s become clear that TE Jeff Swaim is the primary TE for this team. This season, Swaim has been on the field for 93% of the teams snaps and in Week 4 he produced as a TE1. With the state of the position this season, Swaim is a player to keep an eye on. The Texans have given up three passing touchdowns to the position this season and rank in the top 10 in points against to the TE position. If you are desperate, Swaim might be a flyer you can take a shot on.
Can the Texans get the run game going?
A key to any good offense is a balance between run and pass. I’m sure you don’t need a lesson in football 101, but it’s important to remember what team struggles to find this balance due to the fantasy implications. With Houston, it’s their inability to run the ball..like, at all. The trend should continue as they face off with the Cowboys on Sunday Night. The Cowboys did pretty well in Seattle last week and with how the Houston offensive line has performed, I have zero hope in RB Lamar Miller getting more than 50 yards rushing. Ride the arm of QB Deshaun Watson and WRs DeAndre Hopkins, Will Fuller V and newcomer Keke Coutee. With Coutee, I’d stash him unless you literally have no choice.
Deshaun Watson: 28/40, 375, 3 touchdowns
Hopkins: 9 catches, 115 yards, 1 touchdown
Fuller V: 5 catches, 95 yards, 1 touchdown
Coutee: 8 catches, 98 yards, 1 touchdown
Can the defensive front continue good stretch?
As I mentioned in the ‘What We Saw’ article from week four, JJ Watt and Jadeveon Clowney really showed out with four sacks between them. I doubt they get to QB Dak Prescott as easily as they did against Indianapolis. The key will be to hold RB Zeke Elliot in check and be wary of him in the passing game. The Cowboys simply lack any serious threats at receiver which lends to the emphasis of keeping Prescott off balance and rushed. In the battle for mediocrity, Houston should be able to come up on top.