Emmanuel Sanders COVID Update Gives Tre'Quan Smith Fantasy Outlook Massive Boost

Max Staley
Emmanuel Sanders will be out for the New Orleans Saints in Week 7.
Emmanuel Sanders will be out for the New Orleans Saints in Week 7. / Rey Del Rio/Getty Images

The New Orleans Saints' wide receiver group is getting dangerously thin. Michael Thomas' availability remains up in the air due to a mid-week hamstring strain suffered in practice, and their No. 2 weapon Emmanuel Sanders has just been placed on the COVID-reserve list.

With Thomas shaping up to be a true game-time decision and Sanders already ruled out for Week 7, Tre'Quan Smith instantly becomes a must-add player in any fantasy format.

Tre'Quan Smith Fantasy Outlook

Smith is currently rostered in just 17% of Yahoo! fantasy leagues. Chances are he'll still be available in your league if you hurry to the waiver wire.

Assuming Thomas' health continues trending in the wrong direction, Smith could be looking at a huge target share in a Week 7 matchup with the Carolina Panthers. The Panthers have been surprisingly stout against the pass, sitting at No. 13 in Football Outsiders' DVOA metrics, also surrendering bottom-five fantasy production to opposing wideouts.

Even so, Smith could become a great start based on volume alone. He's only played three games with at least 4 targets on the year, but he's averaged 4.3 receptions for 60.7 receiving yards in such games, scoring 2 TDs as well.

If Thomas is ultimately ruled out, Smith could instantly vault into the WR2 conversation as he likely serves as the team's top target alongside Jared Cook (whose outlook also improves with the Sanders news). But if Thomas is active, Smith would be more of a boom-or-bust WR3/4.

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Max Staley is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Max Staley also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username mstaley1212. While the strategies and player selections recommended in his articles are his personal views, he may deploy different strategies and player selections when entering contests with his personal account. The views expressed in their articles are the author's alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel.