The bye weeks are officially upon fantasy owners. Week 6 brings four teams on a bye: Buffalo Bills, Chicago Bears, Indianapolis Colts, and the Oakland Raiders. Some of these teams have more skill players that may be in fantasy lineups than others.
With not a lot of injuries to worry about from Week 5, fantasy owners should take a look at their team and see what their needs truly are. Do you need depth at wide receiver? A second tight end to prepare for the bye weeks? Are you streaming quarterbacks? That is what the waiver wire should be used for this week.
Gardner Minshew, Jacksonville Jaguars (24 percent owned)
Averaging more than 250 yards per game, Minshew has been consistent in taking over for Nick Foles. He has two touchdown passes in four of the five games he's played (he only had one in Week 2). He's not throwing the ball a ton, but he's also not turning it over. He doesn't get many yards on the ground, but he's doing enough to be fantasy relevant. He's averaging just under 22 fantasy points in a six-point per passing touchdown league. Minshew is a viable QB replacement for those in need.
Teddy Bridgewater, New Orleans Saints (9 percent owned)
After playing it safe for three weeks, Bridgewater actually threw the ball in Week 5. Four touchdowns and 314 yards later, Bridgewater is finally putting his stamp on this offense. He found Michael Thomas (13 targets and he caught 11 of them) early and often but did a good job spreading the ball around. If Bridgewater can keep it up (the Saints travel to Jacksonville in Week 6), he is a solid replacement for those that may need a bye week fill-in.
Nyheim Hines, Indianapolis Colts (23 percent owned)
Keep in mind that the Colts are on a bye in Week 6, but Hines is worth looking at in PPR formats. Hines is obviously behind Marlon Mack on the depth chart, but he's averaged five targets over the past three weeks. Hines isn't going to be a great fantasy option, but for those looking ahead to the bye weeks, he may be worth stashing in PPR leagues.
Ito Smith, Atlanta Falcons (14 percent owned)
Yardage-wise, Week 5 was Smith's best game of the season (he had a touchdown in Week 4). The Falcons' running game is struggling, but Smith may see more and more touches if Devonta Freeman doesn't pick up his production. Smith saw six targets in Week 5, and he caught them all for 45 yards. In Week 6, the Falcons face the Cardinals and Smith should have a role as an RB3.
Chase Edmonds, Arizona Cardinals (3 percent owned)
With David Johnson dealing with a back issue, Edmonds should be owned by all owners as a handcuff. Johnson said his back "locked up"' during Week 5. While this doesn't sound like an injury that will keep him out of Week 6, it is something to keep an eye on. If he misses practice this week, fantasy owners should be sure Edmonds is on their roster. The Cardinals play the Falcons in Week 6, and their defense is certainly beatable. Edmonds scored a touchdown in Week 5, and while that may not be a frequent occurrence, he certainly would be valuable if Johnson is out.
Auden Tate, Cincinnati Bengals (22 percent owned)
John Ross is on injured reserve. A.J. Green doesn't show signs of returning to the field. That leaves Tyler Boyd as Andy Dalton's primary option in the passing game. This lack of pass catchers opens the door for Tate. He had six targets in Week 5, and he caught three of them for 26 yards and a touchdown. It wasn't an earth-shattering performance, but it was enough for fantasy owners. While Green is out, Tate should be added as a WR3.
Zay Jones, Oakland Raiders (3 percent owned)
Jones was not being used in Buffalo so he was traded to Oakland on Tuesday night for a fifth-round pick in 2021. The Raiders are on bye in Week 6 but Jones is someone that should now be considered in deeper leagues. The Raiders didn't really have a solid wide receiver behind Tyrell Williams, and that will be Jones' role. Williams has been dealing with some injuries, so Jones may have the opportunity to step up once he learns the offense if Williams misses time.
Byron Pringle, Kansas City Chiefs (1 percent owned)
Pringle is an undrafted free agent that the Chiefs waived a month ago. With injuries, he was brought back, and had nine targets in Week 5. He caught six of those for 103 yards and a touchdown. Patrick Mahomes can get the ball to anyone, so pass catchers in this offense always have the opportunity to do well. Sammy Watkins left the game with a hamstring injury. So if he's out and Tyreek Hill remains sidelined, Pringle should be considered as a WR3 for Week 6.
Chris Herndon, New York Jets (29 percent owned)
Herndon had to serve a four-game suspension, which is now over. With the Jets offense still finding its way, Herndon has the potential to make an impact on the team and for fantasy owners. Last year, he had four touchdowns, but he certainly can exceed that this year. It's a gamble, as he hasn't played yet this season, and he may be tough to trust for Week 6 (assuming he's active), but he may be the answer to some fantasy owner's tight end struggles.
Gerald Everett, Los Angeles Rams (10 percent owned)
If fantasy owners are looking for just one guy to grab from the waiver wire, depending on team needs, Everett would be the guy. The tight end position is very thin this year, and Everett has 19 targets in the past two games. In those games, he has 12 receptions for 180 yards and a touchdown. Jared Goff is looking for him, and he is a solid TE2 with upside.
Defense/Special Teams (DST)
Carolina Panthers (45 percent owned)
This is a tough week for those streaming DSTs. The Dolphins and the Redskins play each other, and both of those DSTs are widely available if anyone wants to take a chance on two poor teams playing each other. However, for a slightly better option, the Panthers are available in just over half of Yahoo! leagues. They play the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in London, and this game could go either way. Jameis Winston has looked good at times and he's struggled. The Panthers have at least one sack in each game so far this year. They also have four interceptions and four fumble recoveries. Carolina scored its first defensive TD in Week 5 as rookie Brian Burns returned a Gardner Minshew fumble (one of three lost by him) 56 yards.
— Written by Sarah Lewis, who is part of the Athlon Contributor Network and lives, eats, and breathes fantasy football. Have a fantasy football question? Send it to her on Twitter @Sarah_Lewis32.