By: Justin Lynch
Ronald Turbin and Frank Gore make Mack’s role muddied, but the rookie back may be their most talented. Despite not playing the last two weeks, Mack had a solid outing in week five, totaling 92 yards and a score on nine carries. He didn’t add much in the receiving game, but the rushing output is something to keep an eye on. When Andrew Luck returns, the ground game will open up, and Mack is the best candidate to take advantage. He likely won’t receive the goal line carries, and hasn’t added much in the receiving game, but maybe those things change if he keeps proving himself. Mack is worth a flier if you have a roster spot.
Garcon was 10th in targets coming into the week, and added 11 more to the total on Sunday. He’s had three good games and two bad games so far this season, the bad games coming against Richard Sherman and Patrick Peterson. Hoyer likes throwing to him, the Niners need to throw, and, unless he’s going against the league’s best, he’ll get open. Garcon is one of the more underrated players in fantasy right now.
With Greg Olsen out, Funchess is taking on a bigger role. He’s had 7 catches and a touchdown in each of his last two games, and Newton is starting to become more comfortable throwing to him. Perhaps even more important than that, Newton is starting to heat up and spread the ball around. That said, Funchess isn’t receiving for many yards, and has been touchdown reliant. Greg Olsen’s injury makes him the top red zone threat, but you still can’t expect a score every game. He’s on the rise, but don’t get too excited.
Kittle was second in routes run for the Niners coming into the week, and finally started getting some targets. 7-83-1 on nine targets is solid output from the little-used tight end, and it may be a sign of things to come. Don’t pick him up yet, because one game isn’t enough to base anything off of, but keep him on your radar, as routes run, play count, and targets could be indicators of future success.
Lewis is likely the beneficiary of the Giants’ slew of receiver injuries. Beckham is likely done for the year. Marshall and Shepard could be out multiple weeks. Lewis scored on Sunday and has made small impacts earlier in the season, including a 4-54 performance Week 1 in Dallas. Manning isn’t very good, they have little running game, though Gallman is interesting, and now they have basically no receivers. Pick up Lewis if you need someone to start the next few weeks at wideout, and hope he scores in garbage time. But top corners will shut him down, and his biggest games may come when some of the attention falls to Shepard or Marshall. He’s still worth a roster spot.
Martin’s Thursday night performance is going largely unnoticed, but 13-74-1 (5.7 ypc) is a really nice start to the year, albeit against the Patriots’ weak defense. Still, Martin looked explosive, strong, and hard to tackle. Even more promising, he was definitively the starter, pushing Rodgers into the backup role. Martin didn’t add much in the receiving game, and he likely won’t going forward, but even a catch or two per game will really help his totals. Martin looks rested and should provide decent output for at least the next few weeks.
Hogan has been one of the top receivers in all of fantasy this year, but I think you should look at trading him. He’s pretty consistent with his statline. Usually around 5-70-1. Eventually that touchdown will go away and instead of having a top-3 receiver, you will have an average one. Hogan likely isn’t going to score 16 touchdowns this season, his current pace. Getting out now would bring in a nice return, especially given the dearth of consistent wideouts this season. He still will have good games, and is a great threat for the Patriots, who are going to have to throw until the defense stops someone, but think about moving him, as his value won’t get higher.