Streaming. If you play fantasy sports, you’ve probably occasionally heard the term thrown around. Fantasywired.com provides a great definition: “In short, streaming is the strategy of plucking a player at a specific position (usually QB, DEF, K, or TE) off the waiver wire ahead of a favorable matchup the following week.” Many people criticize the strategy claiming it uses hindsight to validate it, but I’ve been a successful streamer in several leagues at several positions over the last 20-ish years of playing fantasy football. Each week I will provide you with a few options at Quarterback, Tight End and Defense, with my top pick at each position. I can assure you I’ll be using these picks myself on at least one of my nearly 30 fantasy teams.
If you’d like to see my methodology or the player pool I’ll be choosing from, I covered both extensively in the week 1 installment. You can find the detailed breakdown here.
WEEK 6 STREAMER OPTIONS
Jameis Winston, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
The Buccaneers should be in a shootout with the Falcons, with the second highest point total this weekend. The Bucs are projected to score 27 points and are a 3.5-point underdog, so if they’re trailing, they should be passing more. Winston looked good closing out the 2017 season and during the pre-season and hopefully hits the ground running in his first start of the year.
Andy Dalton, Cincinnati Bengals
Dalton gets Steelers defense which has allowed the second most fantasy points against by opposing signal callers. The game has the third highest point total on the weekend, and they are projected to score 27.75 points by the sharps in Las Vegas. I look for Dalton to have at least two passing touchdowns, and four isn’t out of the question.
C. J. Uzomah, Cincinnati Bengals
I’m going back to the well against the Steelers who have been allowed an average of 20.1 fantasy points to opposing tight ends. The Steelers age getting peppered by opposing defenses, with 57 tight end targets through five weeks. Uzomah has no competition with Tyler Eifert out for the year and Tyler Kroft out for the game. Look for Uzomah to get 10 targets in a game where his team is projected to score nearly 28 points.
Austin Hooper, Atlanta Falcons
Hooper is coming off of a strong game against the aforementioned Steelers, and this week gets an equally bad Buccaneers defense. The Bucs also allow 20.1 fantasy points to opposing tight ends, but coming off the bye, I was a little more hesitant to pull the trigger this week as it is possible the Bucs tried to fix their issues defending opposing tight ends with the extra time off.
Green Bay Packers
The Packers host the 49ers in a prime-time Monday night showdown. Well, what’s left of the 49ers anyway. The Niners are down to their second-string QB, third-string RB, and have a myriad of injuries in their wide receiving corps, and should struggle mightily against an improved Packer defense on the road.
The Colts face the Jets, and although Sam Darnold has shown flashes, he’s still a rookie and has been prone to turnovers. The Jets may also be without top running back Isaiah Crowell, which may help take a little pressure off of the Colts defense too.
Blake “Garbage Time” Bortles came through! In an otherwise bad real-life football performance, Bortles did just fine for fantasy with 430-yards and a passing touchdown to go along with 34 yards and another score on the ground. Those rushing numbers helped offset his four interceptions and resulted in just over 20 fantasy points. Ryan Tannehill as the second option was sub-par at best with only seven fantasy points. (Streaming Quarterback ranking on the season: QB 18, 83 points)
Winner winner chicken dinner. Austin Hooper was TE3 last week with 16.7 fantasy points with nine receptions for 77 yards. In a down year at the position, streaming is a more viable option than ever. My second choice was a Bengals’ tight end. I went with Tyler Kroft, who had a goose egg. On the other hand, C.J. Uzomah tallied 6.3 points, I had the right idea but backed the wrong player. (Streaming Tight End ranking on the season: TE 20, 32 points)
The Jets defense secured four sacks and one interception for six fantasy points. They were also one-yard short of a touchdown on a 105-yard interception return. So far so good, as we’ve had the #1 overall Dst through 5 weeks through streaming options. The Packers were the secondary option, and they scored four points. (Streaming Defense ranking on the season: Dst 1, 63 points)