Fantasy Football

Fantasy Football: Start or Sit Travis Benjamin in Week 5?

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Going into the season, there was one shoe-in San Diego wide receiver to own in fantasy football circles. Unfortunately for those who went that direction, Keenan Allen was lost for the season several weeks ago, and the receiving corps turned into a hodge-podge of Travis Benjamin, Tyrell Williams, and Dontrelle Inman. Benjamin is the most reliable of the three, and it was likely an oversight that we looked past him when he came to San Diego. Sure, Allen was the main man over the years, but the Chargers pursued Benjamin and paid the man after his near-1000 yards and five touchdowns last season. Benjamin is talented, and we really should have seen this coming.

Since Allen went down week one, Travis Benjamin has averaged 82 yards per game and has scored twice in those three games. Granted, he is riding a massive game week two against Jacksonville, which is when he brought in both of those scores and where he tallied 115 yards. With Allen out for the season, the Chargers have turned to a mix of Benjamin and Williams, with both leading the team with 28 targets. Allen has done more with his targets than Williams, hauling in five more catches for 36 more yards and an additional score. And all of this with Tyrell Williams having a ridiculous catch-and-run 44-yard TD run.

This week, Benjamin and the Chargers take on a Raiders secondary that is not performing up to the expectations for them when they went out and spent big free agent and draft capital on the secondary. So far on the season, they are yielding the second most fantasy points per game to wide receivers, behind only Tampa Bay. So far in four games, the Raiders have given up six touchdowns to wide receivers, and there are wide receivers who have played against them and gotten both 100 yards and a touchdown. The secondary is weak, and Benjamin is going to take advantage of that.  With Melvin Gordon’s struggles to move the ball and news that Antonio Gates will be a game-time decision, Benjamin slides into an even more prominent role.

Travis Benjamin wasn’t the Chargers wide receiver to draft, but with Allen going down, he has become the one to own. While Tyrell Williams will also take advantage of this matchup, it is Benjamin who is the better receiver and who will have the higher likelihood of eating on Sunday. He is a player you should figure out how to get into your lineups as he is likely to victimize the suspect Raiders secondary.

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Robert D. Cobb
Founder, Publisher and CEO of INSCMagazine. Works have appeared and featured in places such as Forbes, Huffington Post, ESPN and NBC Sports to name a few. Follow me on Twitter at @RobCobb_INSC, email me at [email protected]