Two factors dominated this edition of the Fantasy Football Flashback, where we celebrate the accomplishments of the week's most reliable players. First, the running back position had a strong week, with four players making their way onto Week 5's list of the top-10 performers and three others (Nick Chubb, Derrick Henry, Dalvin Cook) narrowly missing out. And second, the Monday Night Football shootout in Kansas City resulted in three stars joining the party at the last minute. Let's dive into last week's most valuable assets and assess their future potential.
No. 1: Josh Allen, QB, Buffalo Bills, 36.16 points
Allen had a first half to remember on Sunday, throwing for 370 yards and four TDs before the Steelers had time to collect their thoughts at halftime. The hulking QB put things in cruise control during the second half of a blowout victory, but his half-game antics were so great that he now ranks as the leading fantasy scorer this season. In a year where many top signal-callers have disappointed, Allen is even more valuable than most managers anticipated.
No. 2: Taysom Hill, QB/TE, New Orleans Saints, 34.08
Hill is by far the unlikeliest name on this week's list. One of the most unique players in football, the multi-position bruiser carried the ball nine times for 112 yards and three scores while also racking up a TD on his only pass attempt of the game. Going forward, Hill presents a major conundrum for fantasy managers, as he lacks the consistent usage to be an every-week fantasy starter but steals touchdowns from the more dependable Saints options. Rostered in just 29 percent of Yahoo leagues, Hill should be added by those who need TE help.
No. 3: Austin Ekeler, RB, Los Angeles Chargers, 33.90
After two consecutive weeks on this list, Ekeler is definitely back to being a top-tier fantasy asset. The diminutive rusher needed just 16 carries to rush for 173 yards and a touchdown, and he also crossed the goal line on one of his four catches. Ekeler won’t rack up a massive workload on the ground, but his per-carry success and passing game usage makes him one of the safest players to roster the rest of the way.
No. 4: Leonard Fournette, RB, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, 30.90
Fournette bounced back from a dismal performance on the ground against the Chiefs in Week 4 (-3 rushing yards) to collect 56 rushing yards and a touchdown against the Falcons. More importantly, the LSU alum continued to be heavily involved in the passing game by catching 10 of 11 targets for 83 yards and a score. Fournette has been underwhelming as a rusher this year (3.8 ypc), but he will continue to be a valuable fantasy performer as long as he stays ahead of rookie Rachaad White among Bucs RB receiving options. Overall, I see Fournette as someone to hold but not someone to target in trade.
No. 5: Gabe Davis, WR, Buffalo Bills, 30.60
Davis caught just three passes but still managed to post one of the most memorable WR stat lines of the season. The big-play threat logged a 98-yard catch and run on Buffalo’s third offensive play and then added a 62-yard score in the second quarter. Unfortunately for some managers in shallow leagues, Davis was glued to their bench after producing just 50 yards during the previous two weeks coming off injury. Perhaps his noteworthy effort in Week 5 will get the 23-year-old additional targets in the coming weeks, but I would still be happy to trade him away if a leaguemate overvalues his most recent performance.
No. 6: Patrick Mahomes, QB, Kansas City Chiefs, 30.48
For Mahomes managers, there was no better sight on Monday night than the Raiders jumping out to an early lead. The pressure was on the Chiefs star QB to deliver, and he did just that, throwing for 292 yards and four touchdowns. Possibly the steadiest option at any position this year, Mahomes currently ranks fourth among QBs in points scored and should stay comfortably in the top-5 at his position all season.
No. 7: Travis Kelce, TE, Kansas City Chiefs, 30.00
Kelce recorded one of the strangest stat lines in recent memory on Monday night, when he tallied just 25 yards on seven catches but crossed the goal line four times. The massive fantasy performance gives Kelce a 20-point lead on Ravens TE Mark Andrews for the top scorer at their premium position, and if we remove Taysom Hill (who is on waivers in most leagues), Andrews holds a nearly 20-point advantage on the next tight end (T.J. Hockenson). Those are dealing with poor TE play may wish to pay a premium price for Kelce or Andrews and then work the waiver wire to fill the hole they create in the deal.
No. 8: Josh Jacobs, RB, Las Vegas Raiders, 27.80
Jacobs earned a spot on this list for the second consecutive week by rushing for 154 yards, catching five passes and scoring a touchdown in the narrow Monday night loss to the Chiefs. The 24-year-old has rewarded those who went against the grain and drafted him despite a prevailing preseason opinion that he would not be a focal point in the Raiders offense. The only bad news is that his managers will need to plug his spot during Week 6 while the Raiders are on bye.
No. 9: Jalen Hurts, QB, Philadelphia Eagles, 27.66
The Jalen Hurts fantasy breakout season continued on Sunday when he tallied a pair of rushing scores in an otherwise mediocre performance against the Cardinals. This was the second week in a row in which Hurts threw for fewer than 250 yards and failed to notch a passing score, but his work on the ground has carried him to being the No. 3 QB to this point in the campaign. The 24-year-old has thus far shown an unmatched willingness to run, as is evidenced by his 68 carries, which are 19 more than that of any other QB. And with no signs that he will change his plan of attack, Hurts ranks behind only Allen, Lamar Jackson and Mahomes among QB trade options.
No. 10: Breece Hall, RB, New York Jets, 26.70
Hall keyed a surprising 40-point performance by the Jets by logging 97 yards and a touchdown on the ground and another 100 receiving yards via just two catches. In fact, his day could have been even more special from a fantasy perspective if his 79-yard reception did not end just one yard short of the end zone. Hall has averaged 4.9 ypc through five games and is clearly emerging as one of the league's most dynamic backs. I have no problem with those who need RB help paying up for the rookie on the trade market.