One approach to helping you survive the bye weeks is to search your waiver or free agent lists in order to fill in the gaps in your lineup. This approach is most advisable in smaller leagues, but can definitely come in handy if your league is of a larger stature.  Let’s look at who all is on bye this week and who might be available to fill in.

Week 5 Bye Schedule: Browns, Cowboys, Dolphins, Rams, Ravens, Redskins

Quarterbacks: Colt McCoy, Tony Romo, Chad Henne, Sam Bradford, Joe Flacco, Rex Grossman

Possible Fill-ins

Josh Freeman vs. SF: The 49ers are very stout against the run, but are questionable at best in the secondary. Freeman should be able to pick them apart and get the ball in the end zone through the air as SF is the only team left to not allow a rushing TD.

Matt Hasselbeck vs. PIT:  This is a bit risky since PIT is one of the best teams against the pass so far this year. But Hasselbeck has been able to throw for at least one TD in every game so far. And although PIT may be very stingy, they have yet to get an interception this year.

Kyle Orton vs. SD: This is also a very stiff matchup for the QB; however, it is likely that the Broncos will have to play catch-up against the explosive Chargers. Therefore, look for Orton to keep to the air as he looks for Decker and Lloyd to try and keep it a close game.

Running Backs: Peyton Hillis, Felix Jones, Daniel Thomas, Steven Jackson, Ray Rice, Ryan Torain/Tim Hightower

Possible Fill-ins

Mark Ingram vs. CAR: Ingram is getting the bulk of the carries in the platoon backfield as well as most of the goal line looks. After seeing what Matt Forte did to the Panthers last week, Ingram should have one of his best games as the lanes will certainly be there.

Stevan Ridley vs. NYJ: Ridley looks like he has gained some trust in the Patriots’ backfield as he has been gaining workload each week. With Woodhead injured, look for Ridley to continue seeing carries as he faces a Jets D that has allowed over 130 yards rushing per game this season.

Joseph Addai vs. KC: Since Manning has not been in the picture for the colts, they have relied more on Addai and the run game, who is averaging 4.6 yards per carry this season. Chiefs have allowed 130 yards on the ground and Addai could be in store for a big performance.

Wide Receivers: Miles Austin, Dez Bryant, Brandon Marshall, Anquan Boldin, Santana Moss, Mike Sims-Walker

Possible Fill-ins

Johnny Knox vs. DET: Knox has one of the better upsides on the receiving core for the Bears even though he is not used as much as he should be. However, I think the Bears will have to throw the ball more this week as the Detroit D-line is much stronger than that of Carolinas.

Preston Parker vs. SF: The Bucs will have to pass in this game in order to get the win, and it appears that Parker is becoming one of Freeman’s #1 WRs. He put up good numbers last week and has more yards and catches than Mike Williams.

Victor Cruz vs. SEA: Cruz appears to be slowly moving up the hierarchy of receivers in New York. He has seen increased snaps opposite of Nicks in 2 WR sets as opposed to Manningham. Seattle is very tough to against the run and not so strong on the back end. This will give Cruz plenty of opportunity to get looks from Manning.

Tight Ends: Ben Watson, Jason Witten, Anthony Fasano, Lance Kendricks, Fred Davis, Ed Dickson

Possible Fill-ins

Brandon Pettigrew vs. CHI: He’s ranked 6th in tight end targets and has seen the bulk of his looks the last two weeks. The Bears have trouble against tight ends.

Jermaine Gresham vs. JAC: Gresham is averaging 7 targets a game and at least one red zone target per game. He is a safe play against the poor Jags pass defense.

Todd Heap vs. MIN: He’s finally getting the majority of the work at tight end and the non-Fitzgerald receivers just aren’t getting the job done.

Look for my weekly article on Defense Streamers for some plug ’n’ plays this week on defense. Also follow me on twitter @MrCMarkLee.

  1. Mex says:

    Would you say Ridley has more value this week than a guy like McCluster or Michael Bush?

  2. Anthony says:

    Just traded Steve Johnson for Jacobs/Mendenhall. Im selling high on jacobs i think?? U might be scratching your head at this trade but i seriously need RB help. Who do u think i should start – My team now looks like:

    Qb. Rodgers
    RB. Blount
    RB. Green Ellis ? Jacobs ??
    RB. LT ? Mendenhall ??
    WR. Mike Wallace
    WR. David Nelson
    WR. Miles Austin – week 6 cant wait till hes back
    TE. Gresham until Gates is back and healthy
    K. Mike Nugent
    D. Packers

    Who should my RBS be??? – I can run 3 out there ( 1 being the flex )

  3. Doc

    Doc says:

    @Mex: I would

    @Anthony: Mendy most likely won’t play. I’d lean toward sitting Green-Ellis.

  4. stumanji says:

    I appreciate the idea of this article, but I think you might need to look a little bit deeper. I am in three 12-team leagues and one 10 team league, and all of the guys listed above–save Todd Heap–are owned in all of them.

  5. Mark Lee

    Mark Lee says:

    @stumanji: oh i agree as I am in 14 and 16 team leagues where all are taken. Read article “Bye Bye Bye” for strategery in deeper leagues, it may help a little more.

  6. Mike T. says:

    For long-term value drop Burleson for T. Young, Sims-Walker, D. Alexander, B. Gibson, J. Gaffney, or hang on to Burleson…?

  7. Anthony says:

    Just picked up preston parker; would u start Preston Parker or David Nelson this week ?

    PS: I think Im going to start benjarvus, blount, and jacobs. Reports were saying he wanted to practise yesterday but doctors told him to hold off for just one more day. Im confident Jacobs will play Sunday.

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