Week 4 RB/TE Start ’em/Sit ’em

It’s much nicer to find yourself with three weeks worth of data to investigate before making a final decision. Here we are in week 4. We’re at that point where we can forget all about 2017 and use the data that we have in front of us for the current week and moving forward. Let’s get rolling!

Start Your Studs!

Week 3 Recap

RB Starts – 1 for 2 – Sony Michel certainly had the snaps, but didn’t do a lot with them as the Lions decided to show up defensively. Meanwhile, Lamar Miller was a good pick with 51 total yards including 5 receptions and a touchdown!

RB Sits – 2 for 2 – LeSean McCoy didn’t play and Jamaal Williams was, expectedly, ignored.

TE Starts – 1 for 2 – ASJ was one of the many Jags offensive pieces who disappointed in week 3 while Ben Watson was actually pretty good! No touchdowns, but 5 for 71 is not too shabby!

TE Sits – 1 for 2 – My Kyle Rudolph hunch was right…..until the 4th quarter when he scored the Vikings lone touchdown. Also, Jonnu Smith isn’t even on my streamer list anymore, unless he plays a dumpster fire defense.

Running Back: Start ’em

Chris Carson (Seattle Seahawks)

The Arizona Cardinals can’t stop the run. 130 yards per game and 1.3 Touchdowns per game. We have also seen Chris Carson get the workload. He is the lead back in Seattle. Fire him up! He will be an RB1 this week. In a pinch? I wouldn’t argue against Rashaad Penny in your flex!

Kenyan Drake (Miami Dolphins)

I’m holding my breath because this one has risk. I do not own any shares of Kenyan Drake. If I did, I’d be seriously considering dropping him entirely or throwing him into a trade offer to allow him to be somebody else’s problem. This might actually be the week to buy! The Dolphins are facing a New England Patriots rushing defense that just allowed a Lions RB to rush for more than 100 yards for the first time since Reggie Bush did it……in 2013. Adam Gase is a moron, offensively. This might just be a moment where the evidence is too clear for him to miss.

Running Back: Sit ’em

I wish that I would have written this before Thursday because I would have said Dalvin Cook. But, I’ll give two more.

Peyton Barber (Tampa Bay Bucs)

You’re rolling your eyes at me with my obvious choice. I can feel it. But, please hear me out because I have a point. Stash Ronald Jones NOW! Peyton Barber has been utterly useless. The Bucs are about to lose their 2nd game in a row. We could very well see some changes in the offense. When Barber has another underwhelming game, they might finally stop healthy-scratching Jones and give him an opportunity. They invested the draft capital. Sooner or later, they’re going to need to see what they have in him in an actual game.

Carlos Hyde (Cleveland Browns)

I’m out on a limb again. Carlos Hyde is clearly the featured back in Cleveland and he’s been doing well. Consider these points: Oakland is decent against the run and Cleveland has a shiny new QB toy. My biggest fear is that Mayfield throws to Hyde and he gets the job done through the passing game. But, if you have somebody else you can use, I would.

Tight End: Start ’em

Trey Burton (Chicago Bears)

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers have allowed 21.3 points per game to the Tight End position. Trey Burton will finally show what why the Bears invested in him. Perfect timing for me since I have several leagues with both Burton AND Jordan Reed (who is on bye this week).

Austin Hooper (Atlanta Falcons)

This will be a high scoring game. The Falcons are facing the Bengals who gave up 8 receptions for 74 yards and a touchdown to the Ravens in week 2. Quick! Who is the TE for the Ravens? No Googling allowed. (Trick question, it was a three headed monster that week.) There is no three headed monster in Atlanta. It’s Hooper.

Tight End: Sit ’em

Austin Seferian-Jenkins (Jacksonville Jaguars)

This might be fools’ gold. The Jags are facing the New York Jets who look strong against the Tight End, but haven’t played a team that used the Tight End efficiently so far in 2018 (Lions, Dolphins, Browns). That being said, the Jags offense isn’t exactly lighting things on fire lately. It’s a risk to start ASJ. If you have another option, use it!

Rhett Ellison (New York Giants)

With Evan Engram out, you’re likely hurting at the Tight End position. DO NOT pick up the other TE from the Giants (Rhett Ellison). You’re looking at the Giants matchup against the New Orleans Saints and thinking, “Sneaky Start!” Resist the urge! Nobody needs to use the Tight End against the Saints because it’s too easy to just RB/WR your way to victory! PLUS, Eli needs pass protection. You don’t catch passes being a blocker.

Best of luck to each of you in your week 4 matchups. Unless you’re facing me. In that case, I hope you eat some bad takeout and you’re unable to set your lineup because of….reasons.

The Case for a Little Fitz-Magic

Ryan Fitzmagic is tantalizing the NFL with his absolutely red-hot start. He is the only quarterback in NFL history to throw for over 400 yards in 3 straight games. He’s leading a Buccaneers team that couldn’t find their identity last season on offense or defense to a 2-1 start that easily could have been 3-0 save not for pressure getting to him and making eerily poor decisions compared to the previous 2 games. He’s doing all this right, bringing hope to a franchise that has always felt on the cusp but never could get over the hurdle. And yet, no one is sure if he’ll be the starter going forward, no one is confident that his organization won’t put Jameis back in the starting role with no regard for the magic that Fitzpatrick is creating. Lets look at the stats…

Small Sample, Big Results

Through the first three games of the 2018 season, Fitz is averaging 410 yards and roughly 3 touchdowns to 1 interception. He has a completion percentage averaging over 72% through three games against what many thought to be sturdy defenses. This also beats his career average of 60%. His football numbers are off the charts and so are his fantasy numbers – In PPR leagues, he is the QB1 and is averaging almost 40 points a game. That is astounding. We know, small sample size but for the sake of comparison, the QB1 last season, Russel Wilson, averaged only 24 points per game through the entire season and is only averaging 20 points a game through the first three games this year. FITZMAGIC is doubling up dudes.

Winston is No Competition

His competition, Jameis Winston, once showed a ton of promise and had people hopeful that he could steer the ship for the Bucs but he’s falling to way-side. Through 16 games last season he averaged 13 fantasy points a game. “You can’t compare a full season to 3 games”, that’s probably what you’re thinking. Well, let’s look at Fitzpatrick’s last full season as a starter from a fantasy perspective. He averaged 21.5 fantasy points a game and led his Jets team to 2nd in the AFC East and knocking on the door of running the playoffs. What does that tell you? He’s done this before, he’s led teams and been a fantasy force to boot.

But the argument is why should he start over Jameis Winston. Well, we’ve talked about Fitz-magic this season, over 400 yards a game average, 4 touchdowns a game average, highest completion percentage of his career. What did Jameis do last year?

Jameis had an abysmal 2017 to say the least. 19 touchdowns to 11 interceptions was one of the worst ratios in the league, remember we said the team didn’t have an identity? Lets look at his first 3 game pace to compare to Fitzy. Through 3 games he averaged a respectable 288 yards through the air, Fitz is still averaging more than 100 yards a game than Jameis was able to muster. Well, what about their touchdown-to-interception ratio? How does that stack up? Jameis had 6 touchdowns to 3 interceptions, 2:1, not an ideal ratio but respectable for a quarterback who struggled most of the year where he averaged almost 1 touchdown per game over the remaining 10 games he played.

Everyone Feels Better with a Little Magic

To me, everything about this Buccaneers team feels different, they look like they’re playing with swagger and it’s because Fitz-Magic is at the helm. I don’t think you can justify replacing him until this team has a multi-game meltdown. Jameis has never in his career played like Ryan Fitzpatrick is right now. Bucs fans and fantasy fans alike are happy there’s some magic in Tampa ( atleast for this season )

DFS Week 4: Top Targets, Values, & Bargin Bin Picks for Draft Kings & FanDuel

Chances are if you had pieces from the New Orleans, Atlanta game, you made out well in week 3.  That game reinforces the importance of considering team and game stacks in lineup construction.  It was a wild week 3 in the NFL but now we head to week 4 where all of the rookie quarterbacks drafted in the first round with the exception of Lamar Jackson are starting for their respective teams.

The Rams, Vikings, Chiefs, and Steelers are off the main slate, teams with pieces that warrant consideration each week.  The Patriots are back on the board before another two weeks of primetime games keeps them off again.  It required a little additional research this week but here are some worthy options to consider for week 4.

QUARTERBACK

Tom Brady: vs MIA (DK 6700; FD 8600)

We currently live in a world where the Patriots sit two games behind the undefeated Dolphins heading into this matchup in Foxboro.  The Patriots have only had a losing streak of more than two in the Tom Brady era just once, way back in 2002 when they lost four in a row.  Whatever happened at Ford Field on Sunday night is in the past; the Patriots know they have to win this game to avoid falling three games behind in the AFC East.  In Brady’s last three starts against the Dolphins at home, he’s thrown for 10 touchdowns and is averaging over 20 FPPG in those matchups.  A weak Patriots defense against a more competent Dolphins offense than in recent matchups should keep the Patriots from making it a one-sided affair and running the ball in the second half.  An angry Brady is a great tournament play against a Dolphins team that has faced a Titans team that isn’t clicking under OC Matt LaFleur, a rookie QB in Sam Darnold, and a Raiders team that is already in disarray under Jon Gruden; this is Miami’s first real test.

Matt Ryan: vs CIN (DK 6100; FD 8100)

The defense was supposed to be the strength of this Atlanta team but season-ending injuries that have become the norm each week have left the defensive unit decimated.  Fortunately, the Falcons offense is beginning to resemble what many thought it would become last year under Steve Sarkisian.  The addition of Calvin Ridley gives opposing secondaries another vertical threat opposite Julio Jones to worry about.  Thus, the combination of a depleted defense, rejuvenated offense, and a dome setting make Matt Ryan appealing again for a third straight week.  Not to mention he’s still affordable after a 43 DK point performance and just a $400 salary increase on DraftKings.  The Bengals have allowed multiple passing touchdowns in all three games and in a game with the highest total on the board, the path for returning value is certainly there for Matty Ice and even getting to 4x-5x.

Andy Dalton: at ATL (DK 5400; FD 7400)

All of the reasoning listed above for Matt Ryan applies here too; what we get with Andy Dalton is extra salary to invest in other areas.  AJ Green expects to play in this game and even with Giovani Bernard filling in for Joe Mixon, the Bengals shouldn’t lose a beat on offense.  Whether they use Bernard out of the backfield, the trio of talented receivers, or their tight ends, there are many avenues for Dalton to put together an excellent fantasy performance.  With Keanu Neal and Deion Jones missing, the Falcons have allowed the QB7 and QB1 in weeks 2 and 3 respectively, allowing 34.05 FPPG.  Returning value shouldn’t be an issue here, 20-25 fantasy points should be the goal given the Atlanta deficiencies on defense.

RUNNING BACK

Melvin Gordon: vs SF (DK 8300; FD 8700)

Jimmy Garappolo is out for the year with a torn ACL which downgrades the whole 49ers offense with CJ Beathard as the new starting quarterback.  This bodes well for a Chargers team that needs a win to keep up with the Broncos and Chiefs in the AFC West.  Melvin Gordon and his 18.6 touches per game should have plenty of work if the Chargers take an early lead.  The 49ers allow 8.66 receptions per game to running backs which is a great compliment to the amount of rushing attempts he will see in a game that the Chargers are 10.5 point favorites.

Ezekiel Elliott: vs DET (DK 7700; FD 8200)

The Lions are giving up an average of 150 yards per game to running backs on the ground through the first few weeks and have allowed 100 rushing yard games to Isaiah Crowell and Matt Breida, something to consider with DraftKings and their yardage bonuses.  Ezekiel Elliott would have been more of a FanDuel play for me last year but he’s seeing more targets, including eight against Seattle last week, as there aren’t many reliable passing options in the Dallas offense that he’s now viable on both sites.  Detroit is giving up an astounding 6.33 yards per carry and I expect a depleted Cowboys offense to play to that weakness and heavily rely on Zeke  in this game.

Giovani Bernard: at ATL (DK 6300; FD 6400)

Opposing offenses have completed 36 of 47 tosses to pass catching backs against the Falcons, an average of 12 catches on 15.6 targets per game.  6 FD/12 DK is an incredible floor and this Atlanta weakness is not going to be remedied as this has been a continuing issue since 2016.  Next on the flow chart is Giovani Bernard who handled 100% of the running back touches against the Panthers in week 3.  No thought is required here, roster Bernard and reap the rewards for doing so.

James White: vs MIA (DK 5400; FD 6100)

The injuries to Jeremy Hill and now Rex Burkhead have left the Patriots thin at the running back position.  This bodes well for James White who will see additional carries along with his primary strength of lining up in the backfield.  He faces a Dolphins team that has allowed the 7th most FPA to receiving backs early on in 2018.  With Julian Edelman a week away from suiting up and Josh Gordon still learning the offense, expect Tom Brady to rely heavily on White in a must-win game this week.

WIDE RECEIVER

Michael Thomas: at NYG (DK 9100; FD 9000)

With Mark Ingram returning from suspension next week, it will be curious to see if this offense operates the way it did last year or if Alvin Kamara and Michael Thomas remain the focal points of an offense that is clicking on all cylinders.  We’ll worry about the current Saints offense for now as Michael Thomas has seen double digit receptions and targets in all three games thus far.  If Eli Manning performs to expectations against a Saints secondary that has given up the most receiving yards and touchdowns to wide receivers, this game has the potential to shootout.  The price tag is high but there is a certain comfort in knowing you’re getting the volume you’re paying up for; start Michael Thomas with confidence.

Randall Cobb: vs BUF (DK 5100; FD 6100)

At first glance, 4 catches for 23 yards against the Redskins will deter some from considering Randall Cobb this week.  However, he was targeted 11 times in that game and draws a favorable matchup in the slot against a Bills team that is giving up the second most FPA to slot receivers.  Kirk Cousins targeted slot receiver Adam Thielen 19 times in an effort to expose Rafael Bush last week and completed 14 of those passes for 105 yards.  Davante Adams and Geronimo Allison will see plenty of Tre’Davious White which should filter additional targets to Cobb.  By snap count, he’s still playing more than Allison who has been generating some buzz but in this game, Cobb is the receiver to roster.

Sterling Shepard: vs NO (DK 4900; FD 6200)

Evan Engram leaves behind six targets a game as he deals with a sprained MCL.  The path to additional targets for Sterling Shepard is a lot more difficult this year with Saquon Barkley in the picture.  In games that Odell Beckham missed in 2017, Shepard averaged 9.16 targets versus 5.8 targets when him, ODB, and Engram shared the field.  He’s seeing 6.16 targets per game through three weeks and in a game where one of the best slot corners of 2017 in Patrick Robinson is out with a broken ankle, 7-8 targets would be ideal in what will be a favorable matchup.  Also add in that OBJ and Cody Latimer will deal with Marshon Lattimore and it makes rostering Shepard even more appealing.  No team has given up more yards and touchdowns to the wide receiver position thus far than the Saints and given the salary and potential for increased targets, Shepard makes for a nice play to get to the higher-priced options.

Antonio Callaway: at OAK (DK 4300; FD 4500)

He’s everything you want in a bargain bin player, seeing playing time on 90% of the teams snaps and 10 targets last week.  On FanDuel, Antonio Callaway is a free space as he is priced at the bare minimum of $4500.  The Raiders secondary was burnable last year and that certainly hasn’t changed this year, giving up touchdowns of 74 and 52 yards.  If it wasn’t for two pass interferences calls, Brandin Cooks would have had two deep touchdowns as well in week 1.  He’s proven he can be the Cleveland deep threat on that fourth quarter strike in New Orleans and should have had another if not for Tyrod Taylor’s inexcusable inaccuracy last week against the Jets.  Baker Mayfield is a gunslinger, one that will be looking in Callaway’s direction in this game.

TIGHT END

Rob Gronkowski: vs MIA (DK 7000; FD 8100)

If Brady is your choice at quarterback, then his best pass catching option should be in play as well.  Gronk led the team with five targets in an atrocious effort against the Lions in week 3.  As Brady has had success against the Dolphins at home, Gronk has also enjoyed that success, to the tune of 20.03 FD/22.36 DK points in his last three against Miami in Foxboro, including four touchdowns.  The Patriots offense should improve with the return of Julian Edelman and the gradual integration of Josh Gordon but for this week, trust Gronk in a game that the Patriots need to win.

Trey Burton: vs TB (DK 3900; FD 5600)

If you take away the 75 yard touchdown from Vance McDonald, Tampa Bay would still have allowed the 4th most receiving yards and the most receptions to the tight end position thus far in 2018.  Trey Burton should be licking his chops against a Bucs team that has been burned by the position; they have already allowed more than half the yardage to the position in three games than they did all of last year.  7-8 catches is certainly a possibility for Burton in this game and a touchdown on top of that gets us to 4x-5x territory.

Eric Ebron: vs HOU (DK 3600; FD 5500)

He should have performed much better than the five receptions for 33 yard clip would indicate.  With Jack Doyle inactive, Eric Ebron saw 11 targets, including four in the red zone, but wasn’t able to deliver against the Eagles in week 3.  Doyle is trending towards being inactive again this week against a Texans team that gave up the 5th most FPA to tight ends in 2017 and has allowed two touchdowns to the position this year.  Andrew Luck enjoys throwing to his tight ends as past years have demonstrated and the 31% target share to the position in 2018 is 3rd in the NFL.  His salary is a steal for the usage that is expected of Ebron in this divisional matchup.

DEFENSE

Jacksonville: vs NYJ (DK 4100; FD 5200)

The best defense in the NFL gets a date against a rookie quarterback that has seen what success and failure look like at the next level.  Success may be hard to come by in this game for Sam Darnold against a Jacksonville defense that feasts on turnovers and inferior offenses.  The Jags are the most expensive defense on both sites for good reason and against a quarterback that has thrown five picks in three games, they are worth paying up for this week.

Green Bay: vs BUF (DK 3500; FD 4300)

With the Bears expected to see high ownership on both sites, this makes for a nice pivot from the field in tournaments.  Can a rookie in Josh Allen starting just his second game in the NFL put together two good starts on the road?  That’s the question that needs to be asked when considering the Packers defense this week.  It was as if the Vikings thought they would show up and win; the Packers certainly won’t be fooled after that stunner in Minneapolis.  The hope is Green Bay penetrating a soft Buffalo offensive line that has allowed 14 sacks into turnovers and not allowing Allen to get comfortable in the pocket.

Chicago: vs TB (DK 2600; FD 4300)

Three interceptions including one that was returned for a touchdown, the effects of pressuring Ryan Fitzpatrick.  He has been phenomenal as he is the first quarterback in NFL history to throw for three straight 400 yard games but there are plenty of reasons that he has been a journeyman backup in the NFL.  Those reasons may be rediscovered at Soldier Field against a tenacious Bears defense that features the best secondary the Bucs will have seen early on in 2018.  Especially on DraftKings, expect the Bears D to be the chalk as the price is too good to pass up in a game that should feature some Tampa Bay turnovers.

Each week, I will identify what players are bargains based on the salary cap percentage difference they represent on the respective site.  Here are the notable week 4 bargains from both sites:

NOTABLE DRAFTKINGS BARGAINS

QB Andy Dalton: 1.5

QB Matt Ryan: 1.3

QB Drew Brees: 1.3

RB Isaiah Crowell: 3.2

RB Austin Ekeler: 1.9

TE Trey Burton: 1.5

TE Jimmy Graham: 1

DEF Chicago: 1.9

NOTABLE FANDUEL BARGAINS

RB Giovani Bernard: 2

RB Matt Breida: 1

RB Lamar Miller: .83

WR Josh Gordon: 1.6

WR Corey Davis: 1.6

WR Antonio Callaway: 1.1

DEF Los Angeles Chargers: .5

DFS Week 4: DRAFT Targets & Players to Avoid

Last week I gave you all the upside you needed with Matt Ryan and Mike Evans. I’ll be helping you navigate this user-friendly and competitive way to play DFS every week this season. My advice is based on 6 team standard fast draft formats.

If you’re not familiar with DRAFT I highly encourage you to jump into your App store or Google Play store and download the most user-friendly and fun DFS app out there. You can try DRAFT by taking advantage of our promo code “Top2”-you’ll get a free $3 entry. My takes are a combination of stats, match-up analysis, and what I’ve seen drafting this week: to draft with me next week add me MattHicks15.

Quarterback

Favorite Play: Drew Brees (NO) vs NYG

I usually refuse to draft quarterbacks before the 5th round of DRAFT; there’s generally too much value late to justify anything earlier. Brees, however, has been going off the board consistently in the 4th round of my drafts this week-and I’m very okay with that. Brees is currently leading the NFL is completion (104) and completion percentage (80.6%), he’s 3rd in passing yards, and has thrown 8 touchdowns and zero interceptions through the first 3 weeks. He’s thrown for more than 350 yards and 3 touchdowns in 2 of those games. The Giants have allowed the 14th most fantasy points to opposing quarterbacks this season-and that’s against Blake Bortles, Dak Prescott, and Deshaun Watson. This all adds up to another big week for Brees; making him worth a 4th round pick each and every draft this week.

High Upside: Phillip Rivers (LAC) vs SF

We intentionally took a week off from Rivers against a tough Rams defense but now it’s time to go back to the well (or should I say river….). In his first two weeks of the season, Rivers completed 57 of his 88 attempts for 680 yards, 6 touchdowns, and just 1 interception. Now he squares up against the 49ers who have allowed the 3rd most touchdowns to opposing quarterbacks (8) and the 5th most passing yards to opposing quarterbacks (905) threw the first two weeks. The San Francisco defense is yet to record an interception. Rivers is the 5th round target I’m most comfortable taking, and he’s been available every time for me this week.

Do Not DRAFT: Russell Wilson (SEA) vs ARI

It sounds easy doesn’t it: the iconic Russell Wilson vs a dismal Cardinals defense? It’s too good to be true. Arizona has allowed the 10th least fantasy points to opposing quarterbacks this season, despite facing off against Jared Goff, Mitch Trubisky, and Alex Smith. Those 3 quarterbacks have combined for just 3 touchdowns and 2 interceptions combined against Arizona. Wilson isn’t the quarterback we’ve come to rely on either. The current QB16 has yet to throw for more than 300 yards this season and has thrown for less than 250 yards twice. Wilson, however, has always been able to make up for his passing stats with his legs. That’s not the case so far this year: he’s rushed just 7 times for 21 yards and no touchdowns. Wilson is too far off from a top 6 QB for you to even think about drafting him this week.

Running Back

Favorite Play: Saquon Barkley (NYG) vs NO

Disclaimer: Kamara is, once again, the top pick at running back and overall this week. I, however, refuse to write about the same guy over and over again so it’s time to talk Barkley (my RB2 overall this week). Barkley is currently RB4 in PPR formats; he’s rushed for 226 yards and 2 touchdowns in Weeks 1-3. What’s more enticing, though, is his 21 receptions (on 27 targets) for 137 yards. The Saints have shut down opposing running backs so far this season, but they’ve faced: Peyton Barber (RB57), Carlos Hyde (RB10), and the combo of Tevin Coleman (RB18) and Ito Smith (RB60). The Saints will be without CB Patrick Robinson; who seemed to be one of the few players able to slow the barrage against the worst passing defense in the league. Look for Barkley to benefit from a stretched field.

Upside Target: Gio Bernard (CIN) vs ATL

Running backs are going quick this week: on waiver wires, in trades, and especially on DRAFT. If you don’t grab 2 top guys in the first 3 rounds you’ll be digging through potential upside while that clock slowly ticks away and drives you in panic mode. Take a deep breath and take Gio. Bernard came out strong in his first start of the season: rushing for 61 yards and a touchdown on 12 attempts (5.1 yards per carry). Bernard also showed his dual threat upside: catching 5 of 9 targets for 25 yards. Atlanta has given up the 4th most fantasy points to opposing quarterbacks; in large part because they’ve allowed 8 more receptions to opposing running backs than any of defense through Week 3. They’ve allowed 36 receptions and 255 yards-leaving a lot of upside for Gio to capitalize on.

Do Not DRAFT: Kenyan Drake (MIA) vs NE

The upside is there, the match-up is there, and maybe the coaching will be there….maybe. I want to draft Drake, I also want to play him in every season-long league I have him in. I just can’t do it, though, and you shouldn’t either. Although the Pats have allowed the 3rd most rushing yards to opposing running backs this season, they’ve allowed just 1 touchdown in the first 3 weeks. They’ve also allowed just 154 passing yards, and 0 touchdowns to them. Drake saw just 7 total touches in Week 3, and the Dolphins had just 39 offensive plays. Head coach Adam Gase seems more interested in running college style end arounds and wide receiver touchdown passes than feeding his incredibly talented back.

Wide Receiver/Tight End

Favorite Play: Michael Thomas (NO) vs NYG

You could make a case for drafting another wideout first this week, but you’d be wrong. Thomas is 3rd in the league in targets (40), 1st in receptions (38), first in catch rate (95%), 1st in receiving yards (398) and 3rd in touchdowns (3). There’s 4 tempting running backs that very well may get taken over Thomas in your drafts (Kamara, Barkley, Zeke, and Gordon) which means you have a great opportunity to snag a huge value when picking at the turn; don’t overthink this one: Thomas is your top pick again this week.

Upside Target: Jarvis Landry (CLE) vs OAK

Landry has been eating the first three weeks: he has 20 receptions on 37 targets for 278 yards. Now, Landry has a new quarterback (Baker Mayfield) who’s much more apt to stretch the field and get the ball to Landry in the endzone. This week Landry pulls the Raiders defense, who has allowed the 3rd most fantasy points to opposing wideouts this season. They’ve allowed 612 yards on 36 receptions and 5 touchdowns-leaving a lot of upside for the top wideout in an offense that’s been recently recharged and had an extra 3 days of rest; coming off a Week 3 Thursday Night Football match-up.

Do Not DRAFT: Deandre Hopkins (HOU) vs IND

Hopkins isn’t a WR1 through Week 3. In fact, Hopkins hasn’t even been the WR1 on his own team since Fuller returned in Week 2. That doesn’t bode well for this popular name when combined with a match-up against the Colts, who have allowed the 2nd least fantasy points to opposing wide receivers so far this season. On average, the Colts are allowing just 91 yards and less than a touchdown to opposing wideouts combined per week. Hopkins is a big name, and a big mistake on DRAFT in Week 4.

Week 4 Buy and Sell: Wide Receiver and Tight End

Guess what I did? I didn’t listen to myself from past articles, I didn’t sell Desean Jackson, I bought him and boy did that come back to bite me: lesson learned. As all great fantasy lovers do, we soldier on. Here we look at my targets for week 4!

Wide Receiver 

Buying:

Adam Thielen

He’s playing the Rams”, you may say. To you I say NO Marcus Peters and NO Aqib Talib. Through three games he appears to be Kirk Cousin’s favorite target with 44 targets to be exact. He has a 72% catch percentage and has looked like he hasn’t missed a beat and is building off the amazing 2017 campaign he had. I’m putting my chips here because even in a game where the Vikings couldn’t score and the Buffalo D looked surprisingly good, Cousins looked for him often to the tune of 19 targets. I suspect a similar outing coming with the pressure that Suh and Donald can exert and with their coming schedule. Make a package and get him.

Mike Williams

Through 3 games, his target share isn’t much – only 15 targets. I know we in the fantasy community use this a gauge to see if a quarterback is looking one way or another but I think this is deceptive with him. He’s ranked 4th on the depth chart but is the clear number 2 receiver, maybe even number 1 for the Chargers.  When they got within the 20, he saw more targets than Keenan and had a clearly higher completion to touchdown ratio. I’m very excited for this kid going forward and seeing what he can do against a 49ers secondary that is without Richard Sherman is the next test of his involvement in their offense. The chargers have a favorable schedule as the season goes which gives Williams room to grow.

Selling:

Calvin Ridley

 His emergence could be starting. Coming off a fantastic stat line of 7-146-3, making the hands down WR1 for week 3, is making me feel like he’s starting to come to. Week 2 saw him with 4-64-1, a modestly good line opposite Julio. I think Matt Ryan continues to find his rookie but I’m cautious. Lets not forget week 1 when he disappeared for an 0-0-0 line. I don’t think this repeats ever again in this kids career but going into Cincy against a formidable D, I sell him this week, expect the fire to tone down a bit, you could use him to get an upgrade to a legit wide receiver 1.

Jordy Nelson

He’s old, he had one flash of a game, and his team looks terrible all around. I don’t like him going into Cleveland, a team that is certainly on the up-swing and who’s defense honestly looks like one of the top units in the league. Before last week he had a combined 5 catches for 50 yards on 8 targets. I’m not high on his overall potential to be a weekly starter but some people still buy off hype, now’s your chance, preach his history and make the sale.

Tight End

Buying:

Trey Burton

This Chicago offense has been very underwhelming through 3 weeks. We thought they’d take a step forward and really be a well-rounded powerhouse team but I think Mitch is holding them back. His targets have been consistent averaging 5 a game, and week 1 was an outlier where he only caught 1 pass. At some point, this offense has to get going and the brought Burton in to be a pillar for Mitch. My bet is this team starts to figure itself out, week 4 is usually where teams get into a grove and I hope it happens here. Going against Tampa, a game that will more than likely be a shootout, I see big opportunity for Burton and big opportunity for you to buy him on the low.

Selling:

David Njoku

Baker time baby! Which some would think means Njoku should see a boost, right? Wrong. Through 2 games with Tyrod, he saw 14 targets, pretty solid numbers warranting a start. Game 3 he only saw 2 targets and there is the problem. Baker played the entire second half and was in with more than 2 minutes to go in the first half. He had plenty of time to throw the ball and he needed to in order to win the game. The fact that his targets didn’t go Njoku’s way tells me he loves his WRs and RBs and the fact that the Raiders only solid looking defensive piece are their linebackers signals to me that Njoku can see another down week and could see a down year with Baker at the helm. sell em!

Week 4 Start’ Em/Sit ‘Em: QB/WR

Week 4 is upon us and the Bye Week season has begun unfortunately. It’s time to figure out who to start and who to sit at the QB and WR position. Before we get into it, let’s take a look back at last week’s suggestions. If you took my advice and started Deshaun Watson and Jimmy G, then you were pleased with the performances of QBs 9 and 11 in Week 3. I said to sit Philip Rivers and Andrew Luck and they both finished as QB 15 and 20 respectively. A good week for the QB portion of the article but the WR portion was a different story. I suggested Emmanuel Sanders and he finished at WR17. I suggested Golden Tate and he finished at WR 36. Not great but if you listened to the sit portion of the article then you were pleased to hear that Josh Gordon didn’t even play and Corey Davis only had 2 receptions for 34 yards. With Week 3 in the books, on to Week 4!

Disclaimer: You will never find names like Tom Brady, Aaron Rodgers, Antonio Brown and Odell Beckham Jr. in this article. If you drafted them then you don’t need to think twice about starting them. The purpose of this article is to uncover weekly gems and strong plays.

Start ‘Em QB

DEN QB Case Keenum VS KC

This game is going to be a shootout. I know whenever we say that, it tends to be the opposite but points will be scored at an alarming rate in this game. Keenum looked a bit rattled against a good Ravens defense last week. He’ll gladly welcome a matchup against a Chiefs defense currently giving up a ton of points to opposing QBs. Keenum is a big time start this week plus it’s on a Monday Night, so you can relax knowing you have a 20 point player going in the last game of the week.

NYG QB Eli Manning VS NO

What on earth is wrong with the New Orleans defense??? They can’t be THIS bad and yet they have been the first 3 games of the season. Last year looks to be an aberration and a matchup against Eli Manning and the Giants does not make things look much better. I know Eli may be on the tail end of his career here, but he had a great game against an equally porous pass defense last week against Houston. This is another game that should be a shootout. I expect Eli to be a QB1 this week.

Sit ‘Em QB

TB QB Ryan Fitzpatrick

I know I know, Fitz-Magic is alive and well. However, last week we saw a team blitz the ever-living hell out of Fitzpatrick and he turned back into a turnover machine. Enter the monstrous Chicago Bears defense and this matchup is very unappealing for the beard. This is going out on a serious limb because Fitzpatrick has thrown for 400 yards in 3 straight games. I think this might be the week the wheels fall off. Khalil Mack will feast this week.

PHI QB Carson Wentz @ TEN

I know some people have been stashing Wentz on the bench until his return, which came last week in an underwhelming game against the Colts. I just don’t think Wentz is all the way back yet. He will get WR Alshon Jeffery back this week, which should provide a nice boost, but I’m not ready to put Wentz into my fantasy lineup just yet. Combine that with the fact that the Titans seem to be finding their way on the defensive side of the ball and it adds up to a sit week for Wentz.

Start ‘Em WR

CIN WR Tyler Boyd @ ATL

Boyd has shined as the Bengals’ number 2 wide out and that will continue this week against a banged up Falcons secondary. Improving in every week so far, Boyd exploded to the tune of 6 receptions for 132 yards and a TD last week against the Panthers. He’s a very solid flex play with high WR2 upside this week.

ARI WR Christian Kirk VS SEA

This is an absolute dart throw but I like Kirk a lot and have liked him since the draft. He clicked last week and has shown a rapport with new Arizona starting QB Josh Rosen. He’s the only person other than David Johnson who can take some pressure off of Fitz and I think he can get it done. This is a plus matchup against a weak Seattle secondary and they’re home. I think Kirk is a solid flex play with WR2 upside in PPR leagues.

Sit ‘Em WR

NYJ WR Quincy Enunwa

As much as I love Enunwa, this week is not the time to get cute. Playing against Jacksonville in Florida with a rookie QB is a recipe for disaster. I’d stay away from any and all Jets players this week in fantasy. This game will not be pretty.

BUF WR Kelvin Benjamin

Let’s not get caught up in the fact that Josh Allen did most of the damage with his legs last week and that the disaster in Minnesota was mostly a full-scale implosion on the Vikings’ part. Don’t get tricked into thinking Benjamin is now fantasy relevant. He is still touchdown dependent and he’s going up against a much-improved GB secondary. No love for the Bills this week.