Tonight's game between the Commanders and Bears probably won't have a lot of ramifications for the NFL at large the rest of the season. But it might matter quite a bit for Fantasy purposes. 

This is one of those games your average NFL fan might not really be looking forward to. But the Commanders have been pretty feisty on offense so far, and they have an excellent matchup with the Bears, while the Bears still have plenty of intriguing options, even if they've largely been disappointments this season. There's definitely more at stake from our perspective tonight, and that's not a bad way to kick off a week of NFL action.

In today's newsletter, I have my previews for every Week 5 game, beginning with tonight's, featuring the latest injury news you need to know and my thoughts on some of the toughest lineup decisions for each game. If you still need help, you can email me at with the subject line "#AskFFT" to be included in a Sunday morning mailbag where I'll answer some of the most pressing questions heading until Sunday's lineup lock. Plus, we'll be live on the Fantasy Football Today YouTube channel at 7:30 tonight to answer as many of your Start/Sit questions as we can fit into 90 or so minutes before kickoff. 

We're here to help. Here's what else we've got for you: 

Week 5 Game Previews

There's something to watch in every game on the NFL schedule every week, even if you have to squint to see it sometimes. Here's a look ahead at every Week 5 game, with some notes on what Vegas is expecting to see, the latest injuries, and the toughest lineup decisions:

All odds are via SportsLine's consensus odds.

Bears at Commanders

  • Thursday, 8:20 p.m.
  • Line: Commanders -5.5; 44.5 O/U 
  • Implied totals: Commanders 25, Bears 19.5

We're getting dangerously close to a year since the Bears last won a game. The offense finally showed some real signs of life last week, but the question is, was that because of something they figured out, or just because the Broncos are nearly as big a mess as the Bears are? My guess? It was more the latter than the former. 

  • Toughest lineup decision: Sam Howell -- Start. It's not surprising that Howell's had a bit of an up-and-down first season as a starter so far, and I imagine we're going to see plenty of inconsistency from him, even when things are going relatively well. But the things that lead to his inconsistency -- namely his propensity to let plays develop down the field and take chances, plus his willingness to make plays with his legs, which has played a big part in his 24 sacks through four games so far -- also give him a pretty high weekly ceiling. The Bears are allowing the second-most Fantasy points to opposing quarterbacks this season, so I'll definitely view him as a starter for this matchup. 
  • Injuries to watch: The Bears will be without DBs Eddie Jackson (foot) and Jaylon Johnson (hamstring), while the Commanders look more or less at 100% on offense. That makes me like Sam Howell even more. 

Jaguars at Bills

  • Sunday, 9:30 a.m.
  • Line: Bills -5.5; 48.5 O/U
  • Implied totals: Bills 27, Jaguars 21.5

The Jaguars play their second game in a row in London, but this time they're facing a much tougher test. They managed to beat the Falcons pretty handily despite just 300 yards of offense in Week 4, but they'll probably need a lot more than that to have a chance against a Bills team that has scored 123 points in three games since struggling in Week 1. We haven't seen much from the Jaguars so far this season to suggest they're up for it. 

  • Toughest lineup decision: Trevor Lawrence -- Start. Last week might've actually been the most disappointing showing of Lawrence's disappointing season so far, because he didn't have any excuses this time around for not putting up bigger numbers. He didn't deal with dropped passes or multiple near misses in the end zone as he had in previous weeks. His lone touchdown came on a busted coverage, and his only other throw into the end zone was out of the reach of JaMycal Hasty, who would've had to make a diving catch just to have a chance. I'm not sure what's wrong with the Jaguars offense so far, but it just hasn't looked right. Still, I believe in the talent, both with Lawrence and around him, so I just can't bring myself to bury him in the rankings yet, even with a bad matchup. I'd start guys like Kirk Cousins, C.J. Stroud and Anthony Richardson ahead of him, but Lawrence is still a top-12 QB for me this week. 
  • Injuries to watch: Zay Jones (knee) was limited in Wednesday's practice after missing the past few games, and the Jaguars seemingly have really missed him. We'd like to see him get up to a full participation by Friday, but he's a viable dice roll after having 16.5 PPR points in the opener and multiple near-misses on touchdowns in Week 2. 

Texans at Falcons

  • Sunday, 1:00 p.m.
  • Line: Falcons -2; 41.5 O/U
  • Implied totals: Falcons 21.75, Texans 19.75

The Texans have been shockingly competent so far this season, and they've put up 87 points over the past three games, including 30 and 37 against what are supposed to be pretty good Jaguars and Steelers defenses. This team might just be good enough to compete for the AFC South. And the NFC North might just be bad enough for the Falcons to compete for it, too. 

  • Toughest lineup decision: C.J. Stroud - Start. I'm actually a little wary of trusting Stroud in this matchup, against a Falcons that is just middle of the road against opposing quarterbacks but is also seemingly designed to keep every game as low scoring and close as possible. Even if Stroud plays well, there might be fewer possessions than you're used to against a team like the Falcons that tries to drag every possession out as long as possible. Stroud is playing well enough that I'm ranking him as a top-10 QB, but I wouldn't be surprised if this was a relatively disappointing showing from him. 
  • Injuries to watch: The Texans remain extremely beat up along the offensive line, although Laremy Tunsil (knee) and Josh Jones (hand) were able to practice on a limited basis Wednesday, so maybe they can get the left side of their line healthy, at least. Dameon Pierce (knee) was also limited Wednesday, though I haven't seen anything to suggest he's at risk of missing time, so we'll just file that one under "keep an eye on it." 

Panthers at Lions

  • Sunday, 1:00 p.m.
  • Line: Lions -9.5; 45 O/U
  • Implied totals: Lions 27.25, Panthers 17.75

The Panthers seem behind schedule when compared to the Texans, who picked right after they took Bryce Young. Young hasn't seemed comfortable pushing the ball down the field yet, which could be a problem if the Lions jump out to an early lead and can dominate the clock. 

  • Toughest lineup decision: Miles Sanders-- Start. I think I'm increasingly on an island with Sanders. He's been pretty terrible so far, and yet he also has games of 11.8 and 17.2 PPR points out of four, and I think his limited role in Week 4 (especially in the second half) was more about him being less than 100% than him losing his job to Chuba Hubbard. I'll grant I could be wrong, but I'm going to keep starting Sanders as an RB2 as long as I can count on him for double-digit carries and a healthy passing game role -- he has 23 targets to Hubbard's 12 so far. As long as he looks better in practice this week than he did last week -- when he was limited the first two days and then missed Friday's session -- I'll be rolling him out there. 
  • Injuries to watch: Sanders was limited Wednesday, which doesn't tell us much; keep an eye on Thursday and Friday, and hopefully we'll see him move in the right direction as the week goes on. On the other side, Amon-Ra St. Brown didn't practice with an abdominal injury, though it's not clear how serious it is at this point. He's missed some time with injuries during practice this season, but has played through them so far. Hopefully this follows the same pattern. I'll also note that Jameson Williams practiced for the first time Wednesday as he works his way back from a suspension. I wouldn't want to start him this week, but hopefully last year's first-round pick shows us something to get excited about. 

Titans at Colts

  • Sunday, 1:00 p.m.
  • Line: Colts -1; 42.5 O/U
  • Implied totals: Colts 21.75, Titans 20.75

The Titans offense finally looked good last week, with Ryan Tannehill recovering from a disastrous first three games to complete 18 of 25 passes while Derrick Henry finally broke loose against the Bengals. And it could have been an even better game because Tannehill just missed on a couple of deep shots that would have broken the game open earlier. 

  • Toughest lineup decision: Jonathan Taylor -- Start. As of Wednesday, we don't know whether Taylor is going to be cleared to play. However, seeing as he was a full participant in Wednesday's practice, I'm betting on it. He might not be ready for the workload we would usually expect from him, and it looks like a tough matchup matchup -- the Titans have allowed the third-fewest Fantasy points to opposing running backs so far this season, though it's also worth noting they've faced three backups and Joe Mixon playing in a broken Bengals offense, so I'm not sure how much weight we should put on that, either. If Taylor is right, he should be a Fantasy star in this offense, even with Anthony Richardson taking some goal-line work. However, for Week 5, I'd bet he'll split work fairly evenly with Zack Moss, which pushes both of them into the low-end RB2 range. But I'd have to have some really good alternatives to sit Taylor, who is the kind of back who can make you regret benching him with a single carry from deep in his own territory. 
  • Injuries to watch: Taylor was a full participant in practice Wednesday, which suggests he's going to play this week. The Colts have some injuries on the offensive line right now, so that's worth watching. On the other side, Treylon Burks (knee) didn't practice Wednesday after sitting out last week, so that seems like it might keep him out yet again, unfortunately. 

Giants at Dolphins

  • Sunday, 1:00 p.m.
  • Line: Dolphins -11; 48.5 O/U
  • Implied totals: Dolphins 29.75, Giants 18.75

The Dolphins have 10 sacks this season, which is a pretty middling number -- tied for 19th in the league. Of course, they haven't faced the Giants yet, who would have the ninth-most sacks allowed even if you took away all 11 from Monday's brutal loss to the Seahawks. As long as left tackle Andrew Thomas is out, things feel pretty hopeless for the Giants, whose only win came in the final minute of a game against the Cardinals

  • Toughest lineup decision: Daniel Jones -- Start. All that being said, yeah, I'm probably starting Jones. Partially, it's a reflection of the state of the QB position, where two QBs I would otherwise rank ahead of him are on bye and a few more are struggling even worse than Jones is right now. He's registered single-digit Fantasy point showings in three of four games, but this Dolphins defense has been vulnerable against the pass and should put the Giants in a very pass-heavy game script. Besides ... you don't directly lose points for sacks. 
  • Injuries to watch: I'd feel much more confident about starting Jones if Thomas and Saquon Barkley were cleared to play. Thomas (hamstring) did not practice Wednesday, while Barkley (ankle) was limited. Barkley looks like he has a chance to play, but Thomas feels like a longshot. That's also true of Dolphins tackle Terron Armstead, who is expected to miss "weeks, not days," as coach Mike McDaniel told reporters this week. 

Saints at Patriots

  • Sunday, 1:00 p.m.
  • Line: Patriots -1; 40 O/U
  • Implied totals: Patriots 20.5, Saints 19.5

The hope was that with Bill O'Brien taking over as offensive coordinator that the Patriots offense would take a big step forward this season, but it's been the exact opposite. They looked OK in Week 1, scoring 20 against the Eagles, but it's been rough ever since, scoring 35 points over the past three games. Nothing about this offense looks particularly good right now. 

  • Toughest lineup decision: Rhamondre Stevenson -- Sit. Stevenson has been splitting work with Ezekiel Elliott more than we hoped, and that has left him as a platoon back in a bad offense -- not where you want to be. My preference, in fact, would be to go away from Stevenson, if I can. But there aren't a lot of backs in significantly better situations than Stevenson, unfortunately -- Dameon Pierce got more than 15 carries for the first time in Week 4, and still doesn't have a game with more than three targets, something Stevenson has done twice, for example. There's a big glob of running backs between, say, RB17 and RB28 who are pretty interchangeable for me, and Stevenson is in that group. Which ones will be the best this week likely comes down to which ones score, and Stevenson's chances of scoring don't seem especially great these days. 
  • Injuries to watch: The Patriots have a bunch of injuries on the defensive side of things, but Stevenson (thigh) is the only noteworthy one on offense. Since he was limited Wednesday, it seems safe to assume he'll be OK, but it is a new injury, so we'll keep an eye on it. 

Ravens at Steelers

  • Sunday, 1:00 p.m.
  • Line: Ravens -4; 38 O/U
  • Implied totals: Ravens 21, Steelers 17

I wonder how many times in the past 15 years the Steelers have been home underdogs against the Ravens. Heck, I wonder how many times they've been home underdogs period in that time. Unfortunately, I can't exactly argue they don't deserve it. 

  • Toughest lineup decision: Najee Harris -- Sit. Honestly, I'm at the point where I think my preference is to sit every relevant player on the Steelers, though that's harder to do with George Pickens, given the injuries and bye week absences at wide receiver. But Harris is easier to get away from since Jaylen Warren's expanded role in the passing game. Harris is still the lead runner here, and I think he's actually looked better than he did a year ago, at least. But, with just three targets over the past two games, he needs a touchdown to have much value in Fantasy at all, and this doesn't project to be an offense that provides many opportunities against tough defenses. 
  • Injuries to watch: Kenny Pickett (knee) was limited in Wednesday's practice and sported a knee brace, but he told reporters he'll be "ready to go" for Sunday's game. I'm not sure a less-than-100% Pickett is what this Steelers offense really needs, but it looks like he's going to give it a go after last week's scare. Pat Freiermuth (hamstring) is expected to miss multiple weeks. On the Ravens side, Rashod Bateman (hamstring) was a full participant in Wednesday's practice, while Odell Beckham (ankle) was limited. Neither seems likely to have much Fantasy appeal at this point, but keep your eye on rookie RB Keaton Mitchell, who opened the season on IR but was a full participant in practice Wednesday and could see action moving forward -- Melvin Gordon has been activated from the practice squad three times, so they'll have to add him to the active roster for good if they want to have him available for another game. What they decide to do with Gordon should tell us something about Mitchell's chances of making an impact this season. 

Eagles at Rams

  • Sunday, 4:05 p.m.
  • Line: Eagles -4.5; 50.5 O/U
  • Implied totals: Eagles 27.5, Rams 23

The Eagles are 4-0, winning their average game by a touchdown so far, and it doesn't really even feel like they've totally clicking yet. That's a scary thought.  

  • Toughest lineup decision: Dallas Goedert -- Start. Goedert's been awful so far, with just 21.8 PPR points total through four games. However, I'm going to have an awfully hard time going away from him. Maybe that's just stubbornness, but I just have to have faith that Goedert's track record in this offense matters more than four bad games so far. He's been a model of efficiency, and I'll take 5-8 targets from Goedert over the same number from the likes of Hunter Henry, Cole Kmet, or Jake Ferguson
  • Injuries to watch: Cooper Kupp (hamstring) returned to practice Wednesday, logging a limited practice as his 21-day window to return opens. There have been some conflicting reports as to whether he's likely to return this week, and I'm leaning toward it being the less likely option. He should be good to go soon, but I wouldn't be surprised if the Rams hold him back. One other thing worth watching here is Kyren Williams' status; Williams didn't practice Wednesday with a hip injury. I'd add Ronnie Rivers just in case Williams' injury forces him out. 

Bengals at Cardinals

  • Sunday, 4:05 p.m.
  • Line: Bengals -3; 44.5 O/U
  • Implied totals: Chargers 26.5, Raiders 21

All I'll say is this: Despite the fact that they are road favorites, I'd been very hesitant to rely on this version of the Bengals in my survivor pick 'em pools. 

  • Toughest lineup decision: Joe Burrow -- Sit. I think we'll see a healthy, dominant Joe Burrow again at some point. I just have no idea if it'll be in Week 5, or Week 8 after the team's bye, or maybe Week 1 of the 2024 season. He's clearly less than 100%, but the more worrying thing is that his struggles stretch back to Week 1, before his setback with the calf injury. I'm trying to buy low -- very low -- right now, but I'm not viewing him as a starter in single-QB leagues, even in what should be a good matchup. 
  • Injuries to watch: Tee Higgins (ribs) didn't practice Wednesday, a bad sign for his chances of playing. He's dealing with fractured ribs, and is a risky start even if he plays, given how much this offense has struggled.  

Jets at Broncos

  • Sunday, 4:25 p.m.
  • Line: Broncos -1.5; 43.5 O/U
  • Implied totals: Cowboys 25, Patriots 18

The Broncos have been an easy target for Fantasy purposes, and the Jets are going to be a popular pick to break out this week. I'll just point this out: Only one team (the Bengals, sadly) has had fewer drives of 40-plus yards than the Jets right now, with 11; for context's sake, they've had 17 drives without a first down so far. Caveat emptor, and all that. 

  • Toughest lineup decision: Breece Hall -- Start. Having said all that, I'm going to rank Hall as a top-24 back this week. Robert Saleh told us he's likely done having his snaps consciously limited, and the matchup is just too juicy to ignore given that. It's entirely possible he has 13 carries for 22 yards and catches one pass for 1 yard and we're all bummed out beyond belief. But the Broncos are allowing an average -- an average of 43.95 PPR points per game to running backs right now. Even if you take out the Dolphins games, they'd be bottom 10 in points allowed to RBs. 
  • Injuries to watch: Javonte Williams (quad) didn't practice Wednesday, the first real update we've gotten on his status since he left Sunday's game. Reports indicated he wasn't likely to miss much time, but that doesn't mean he'll be back immediately, so if Jaleel McLaughlin went unclaimed in your league somehow, go add him. He'd be an RB2 if Williams is out. 

Chiefs at Vikings

  • Sunday, 4:25 p.m.
  • Line: Chiefs -4; 53 O/U
  • Implied totals: Chiefs 28.5, Vikings 24.5

Not only does this game have the highest over/under on the schedule in Week 5, but the Vikings are four-point dogs and still have the seventh-highest implied total of any team. 

  • Toughest lineup decision: Isiah Pacheco -- Start. At RB21, this might be the highest I've ever had Pacheco ranked, and I'm still well behind the consensus; he's RB18 in PPR scoring in Dave, Jamey, and Heath's consensus. He's still mostly not a big contributor in the passing game, though that does seem to be changing a bit, as his 12 targets through four games have almost matched his total from 17 a year ago (he had 14 last season). The risk here is that this game just turns into a track meet and the Chiefs abandon the run early, though Pacheco has benefited from the Chiefs being closer to average in terms of pass rate over expectation over the past two weeks, as Ben Gretch pointed out in his Stealing Signals newsletter Tuesday. If that sticks and Pacheco keeps running routes on around 40% of their dropbacks, I may have severely underrated his upside. 
  • Injuries to watch: As of Wednesday, it doesn't look like there's much to keep track of in this game on either side, thankfully.   

Cowboys at 49ers

  • Sunday, 8:20 p.m.
  • Line: 49ers -4; 45 O/U
  • Implied totals: Chiefs 26, Jets 16.5

This is one of the most fascinating games of the week. The Cowboys have been content to play conservatively, with the lowest intended air yards of any team in the league on a per-pass basis. Can they really do that against a 49ers defense that swarms to the ball, especially if the 49ers can put up points early on a very good Cowboys defense? I hope we see the Cowboys truly tested here. 

  • Toughest lineup decision: Deebo Samuel -- Start. I had a hunch that Samuel wouldn't be a big factor last week, though he was still ranked as a low-end WR2 for me, so it's not like I buried him; but I did sit him in one league for Gabriel Davis, and in another league for Zack Moss in my flex. That worked out, but it was based on Samuel missing the entire week of practice. He's being viewed as day-to-day with that same knee injury, and if he's held out of practice again all week, I'll change my tune. For now, I expect much better things from him in a game that should be much more competitive; they didn't need much from Samuel in a 35-16 win. 
  • Injuries to watch: Rico Dowdle (hip) didn't practice Wednesday, which could put Deuce Vaughn in line for backup RB duties and could make him a decent emergency starter if you need one. On the 49ers side, Samuel (knee) was limited, which bodes well for his chances of playing a bigger role. 

Packers at Raiders

  • Monday, 8:15 p.m.
  • Line: Packers -2; 44.5 O/U
  • Implied totals: Packers 23.25, Raiders 21.5

These teams rank 19th and 20th in yards per play, with both especially struggling with the run; the Raiders have the fewest rushing yards in the NFL, while the Packers have the third-fewest. That's not what we expected from these two teams, and I wouldn't be surprised if we saw a concerted effort to establish the run on both sides. 

  • Toughest lineup decision: Christian Watson -- Start. Obviously, I can't say this with a ton of confidence after Watson had just two catches in his first game of the season in Week 4. However, he had a long layoff with the hamstring injury, and now will have had 10 full days off before this game, so I expect him to be at 100%. I remain somewhat skeptical that he's really going to be the No. 1 option in this offense, but I'll give him the benefit of the doubt in what should be his first game with no limitations, especially against a bottom-12 defense against WRs. 
  • Injuries to watch: Neither team will practice until Thursday, officially, so we won't have any updates on Jimmy Garoppolo (concussion) until then. He was still in the concussion protocol as of Monday, however.