What We Saw: Week 6

The QB List staff catches you up on everything you missed during Week 6 of the 2020 NFL season.

Falcons @ Vikings

 

It’s amazing what getting a top-five receiver back from injury can do for an offense. Julio Jones showed us why he was a top-three receiver in fantasy drafts this year. He scored on the Falcons’ first possession and dominated with 137 receiving yards on his nine receptions. In their first game without head coach Dan Quinn, the Falcons put up 10 points in every quarter and steamrolled the Vikings 40-23. The Falcons were actually up 33-7 late in this one but the Vikings scored twice in the final four minutes to make the score a touch more respectable.

 

Atlanta Falcons

 

Quarterback

 

Matt Ryan: 30/40, 371 yards, 4 TDs, 2 sacks | 4 carries, 8 yards

 

I stated last week that it is hard for a quarterback to put up big numbers without their top weapon. Fast forward to Sunday with a healthy Julio Jones, and Matt Ryan is the number two quarterback option after the early set of games. Ryan had this Falcons offense moving whenever they went through the air. He averaged a healthy 8.6 yards per pass compared to the Falcons woeful 2.7 yards per carry on the ground. Here is a look at some escapability by Ryan on his third touchdown of the day. Ryan will be a decent QB1 option next week with another juicy matchup on tap next week against the Lions.

 

 

Running Backs

 

Todd Gurley: 20 carries, 47 yards | 4 targets, 3 receptions, 20 yards

Brian Hill: 10 carries, 28 yards, 1 fumble | 2 targets, 2 receptions, 6 yards

 

 

Todd Gurley got the volume we wanted from him with 24 opportunities but he did absolutely nothing with them. His stat line was buoyed with a bit of receiving work so his day didn’t look totally bad. This was the Gurley we have seen most of the season, besides last week. He didn’t appear to have much burst and couldn’t make much happen on his own. Brian Hill continued to be involved with 12 opportunities but a good bit of his work came in garbage time. Lucky for Gurley owners, Hill was just as inefficient as Gurley was with his touches. This unit gets the Lions poor run defense next week and Gurley will be a volume-based RB2 in that matchup.

 

Wide Receivers/Tight Ends

 

Calvin Ridley: 7 targets, 6 receptions, 61 yards, 1 TD | 1 carry, 8 yards

Julio Jones: 10 targets, 8 receptions, 137 yards, 2 TDs

Russell Gage: 4 targets, 4 receptions, 65 yards

Hayden Hurst: 4 targets, 4 receptions, 57 yards, 1 TD

 

Welcome back Julio Jones. The all-pro receiver got started early, catching a red zone touchdown (shocking, I know). After that, he added a 40-yard touchdown, a botched coverage, and he had a few more chain-moving receptions as well. Calvin Ridley quietly put up another good fantasy day. After this set of games, he is the current overall WR1 in PPR leagues and will continue to produce with Julio back in the fold. Ridley continued to show a great connection with Ryan in the red zone as he caught another short-yardage touchdown on Sunday. Ridley now has 100 yards and/or a touchdown in five of six games. The other Falcons receiving options definitely took a back seat with Jones back and it will be hard to trust any of them on a week to week basis.

 

 

Minnesota Vikings

 

Quarterback

 

Kirk Cousins: 24/36, 343 yards, 3 TDs, 3 INT | 3 carries, 3 yards

 

At half time, Kirk Cousins had thrown three interceptions and the Vikings were being shut out against one of the worst defensive units in the NFL. After the half, down 23-0, Cousins and the Vikings passing offense got it going. His final stat line for fantasy purposes was great 340+ yards and three scores. Cousins and the Vikings have a bye next week and will then face the Packers in week eight. Cousins will be a QB2 against the Packers in what should be a tough matchup.

 

Running Backs

 

Alexander Mattison: 10 carries, 26 yards | 2 targets, 1 reception, 4 yards

 

Alexander Mattison was the big waiver-wire grab and big-time DFS play in this cushy matchup against the Falcons. Unfortunately for him the Vikings quickly got in a negative game script and Mattison did not get the kind of workload that we were expecting. That was highlighted by the Vikings’ four rushing yards in the second half. He wasn’t very productive with his 12 opportunities as he only turned those into 30 yards. Now, the Vikings are on bye, and stud running back Dalvin Cook is likely to return in week eight against the Packers. Hopefully, you didn’t blow your FAAB money on Mattison for potentially one game.

 

Wide Receivers/Tight Ends

 

Adam Thielen: 5 targets, 3 receptions, 51 yards, 1 TD

Justin Jefferson: 11 targets, 9 receptions, 166 yards, 2 TDs

Irv Smith Jr.: 5 targets, 4 receptions, 55 yards

 

Justin Jefferson was the Vikings’ lone bright spot today. He had a game-high five receptions over 15 yards down the field including the nice red-zone score shown below. It is very encouraging that he is getting work in the red zone, downfield, and the volume to go with it (30 targets the last four games). Jefferson should be looked at as a boom-or-bust WR2 right now but a definite WR3/flex option. There will be ups and downs with him because of the offensive philosophy of wanting to run the ball early and often. Adam Thielen caught a late garbage-time touchdown to save his otherwise unproductive day. He should still be considered a WR1 going forward. Irv Smith Jr. built upon his productive game last week with another five target day. He has back-to-back four reception on five target games after having five total targets through the first three games. He is creeping into the fringe TE1 conversation with this usage.

 

 

-Kevin Taylor (@ktbeast918 on Twitter)

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