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Fantasy Football: Houston Texans Week Five Start 'Em/Sit 'Em

The Jets have looked awful in recent weeks, does that point to success for Texans players?

Al Bello - Getty Images

The struggles of the New York Jets have become common knowledge with the amount of media coverage they receive on a weekly basis. Every NFL team is in the news, but rarely is a team that at best has average talent on their roster, covered at a level this nauseating. The Jets have given up big games and big performances to nearly every position from a fantasy perspective in every game this season; I expect that trend to continue this week. Before you set your lineup, check out the week five edition of start 'em/sit 'em.


Arian Foster - The Jets have given up big performances to the opposing running back nearly every week this season so maybe this is the week that Arian Foster finally breaks out with a monster game. In week one C.J. Spiller ran for 169 yards on only 14 carries, in week three Reggie Bush averaged over six yards per carry, and in week four the 49ers ran for 245 yards including 56 yards to backup Kendall Hunter on seven yards per carry. In their last meeting in 2010, Arian Foster racked up 143 total yards and scored two touchdowns. The Jets defense this season is not nearly as good as it was in 2010; they rank 31st against the run this season vs. ranking 3rd against the run in 2010. Foster is a star, he has a nice matchup, keep him active.

Texans Defense - The 49ers defense scored 27 points last week against the Jets in my standard scoring league; I'm happy with a third of that in most weeks from my defense. San Francisco put up that huge number on the strength of a shutout while collecting three sacks, four turnovers, blocking a punt, and scoring a touchdown. In that same league the Texans rank second overall in fantasy points this season for defenses; they should be in for a big game on Monday. The Texans had four sacks last week, forced three turnovers, and scored two touchdowns against the Titans. They may not score a touchdown on Monday, but I believe they have a great chance to lead all defenses in scoring in week five. The Texans defense is a must start this week.

Andre Johnson - The veteran receiver has had an up and down season in the world of fantasy football with big games in weeks one and three, but turning in subpar performances in weeks two and four. Johnson totaled 10 catches for 191 yards and two touchdowns in odd numbered weeks. In even numbered weeks, Johnson has totaled 6 catches for 77 yards and zero touchdowns. Coincidence? Yes, but at least this game is on an odd numbered week. The Jets rank fourth in passing yards allowed this season, but that rank came against below average to bad quarterbacks like Ryan Tannehill and Ryan Fitzpatrick, not to mention that they no longer have Darrelle Revis. Against the only Pro-Bowl quarterback they've faced, Roethlisberger and the Steelers receivers had a big game. Keep Andre Johnson active this week, but if he has another subpar game in fantasy terms this week, it may be time to adjust our thinking on his value.

Matt Schaub - Over his last eight games, Schaub has completed 66 percent of his passes and thrown for 12 touchdowns with only two interceptions. Six of those touchdowns have come over his last two games and his QB rating of 105.3 ranks second in the AFC. The Jets rank fourth in passing yards allowed with an average of 198 yards given up through the air over the first four games; but of course with the exception of their last game, that rank was earned with Darrelle Revis on the field. In week two Ben Roethlisberger completed 24/31 passes for 275 yards, two touchdowns, and no interceptions. Not monster stats, but their good enough to help you win and I think Schaub will post similar numbers to Roethlisberger. Schaub is not a must start, this is not a cupcake matchup, but he's a quality start this week if your other quarterback has a tough matchup or has a bye this week.

Owen Daniels - Despite facing a top ten pass defense, I still think Daniels is a good option this week. Daniels has scored a touchdown in each of the last two weeks and is Schaub's most targeted receiver with 28 targets through four games; three more than Andre Johnson. As mentioned before, with Revis out for the year, I don't think the Jets current rank against the pass is an accurate reflection of what their pass defense will look like on Monday. The Texans do a great job in disguising their playaction plays and should have room over the middle for big plays; Daniels will be the biggest beneficiary of those plays. He's not a must start, but a decent option this week.

Shayne Graham - After making five field goals in the first two games, Graham has made just two field goals over the last two games. Fantasy owners want kickers on good offenses that move the ball, but recently the Texans have moved it so well that it meant Graham kicked mostly extra points instead of field goals. He's scored at least seven points in every game this season so he remains a solid fantasy kicker but a low-end starting option this week.


Ben Tate - The Texans backup running back had a huge game against the Jaguars in week two with 74 yards rushing, 23 yards receiving, and two touchdowns (21.7 fantasy points). In his other three games, Tate has a total of 43 rushing yards, 25 receiving yards, and zero touchdowns; an average of just over two fantasy points per game. To make matters worse, the Texans have continued to give Arian Foster carries late in the game even with a big lead; carries that should be going to Tate. Until he starts getting more consistent carries, keep Tate on your bench.

Kevin Walter/Keshawn Martin - The secondary receivers are starting to get more involved in the offense in recent weeks, but at best, these guys are still only the fourth option behind Andre Johnson, Owen Daniels, and Arian Foster. Unless one of them emerges as a consistent go to player for Schaub, keep them benched.

Images by eflon used in background images under a Creative Commons license. Thank you.