It’s officially time for Week 4 and after Tuesday night’s presidential debate, nobody gets to complain about the Broncos and Jets on Thursday Night Football. Sadly, we will not be getting four nights of football this week, as the league officially postponed the Titans vs Steelers game to later in the season. Be sure to remove all those players from your lineup this weekend!
So, let’s talk fantasy. As always we use advanced statistics and my (advanced) brain power to give you the best players to start and sit at every position. And of course, the best sleeper picks this week.
So without further ado, let’s get into it!
Joe Burrow vs Jacksonville
If you've been living under a rock the last year and three weeks, Joe Burrow is legit. The No. 1 overall pick from last April has put together back-to-back 300-plus yard games while tossing five total touchdowns. Despite being behind one of the worst offensive lines in the league, Burrow has dropped back 162 times over three weeks while averaging 47 passing attempts per game. With rushing upside as well, Burrow needs to be owned going forward. And while you're at it, fire him up as a starter this week against Jacksonville who has allowed a league-high 118.6 passer rating and the fifth-most fantasy points per game to quarterbacks.
Cam Newton at Kansas City
After a rough Week 3 for Newton, better things should be in store against Kansas City this weekend. While this game could turn into a potential shootout, where Newton could show off the arm that threw for nearly 400-yards against Seattle, there is a lot of opportunity for Newton on the ground in this matchup. The Chiefs’ defense has given up a total of 128 rushing yards to quarterbacks this season, the second-most in the league. Just last week, Lamar Jackson ran for 83 yards on nine carries against them. Newton will have his chance for a big game at Arrowhead.
Carson Wentz at San Francisco
According to PFF, Wentz has produced 12 turnover-worthy plays this season — double the next closest quarterback. He’s thrown just three touchdowns compared to six interceptions this season and things shouldn't get easier this week against the 49ers. San Francisco has allowed 187.3 passing yards per game to enemy quarterbacks this season, which is second in the NFL. With Jalen Reagor (thumb) and Dallas Goedert (ankle) both moved to injured reserve too, tough times will just get tougher for Wentz.
Ryan Fitzpatrick vs Seattle
Can you smell that? It’s Fitzmagic time baby! Fitzmagic is here, as the gunslinger has put up nearly 25 fantasy points per game the last two weeks. This week, Ryan Fitzpatrick faces a Seattle defense that has surrendered the most fantasy points to opposing quarterbacks. As the Dolphins defense should struggle slowing down Russell Wilson, expect the team’s QB to be throwing the ball a lot in this shootout.
Kenyan Drake at Carolina
Lol if you’re mad about my fantasy output the first couple of games, drop me and bless someone else in your league— Kenyan Drake™ (@KDx32) September 21, 2020
Even though Kenyan Drake himself does not care about his fantasy production, we do and it hasn't been great. Drake has the chance to finally right the ship here in a perfect matchup against the Carolina Panthers. After allowing the most points to the position last year, Carolina has allowed the second-most fantasy points to backs this year after allowing all three backs (Josh Jacobs, Leonard Fournette, Austin Ekeler) they faced to score over 30 points. We think Drake will get back on track this week in the fantasy world, but don't quite think he’ll care if he doesn't.
Spoiler alert: still don’t care lol— Kenyan Drake™ (@KDx32) September 28, 2020
Todd Gurley at Green Bay
Gurley should put up strong numbers against a Packers defense allowing the third-most fantasy points to running backs this season. With just three receptions for three yards this season, more production in the passing game would be a boost, especially against the Green Bay defense which has given up 234 receiving yards to backs. Either way, Gurley should be able to pile up his fair share of yards on the ground on Monday night.
Sony Michel at Kansas City
Michel capped off a few career-long runs in the Patriots’ victory over the Las Vegas Raiders. However, he saw just nine total carries that game as the team continues to rotate running backs consistently. With James White’s return looking likely this week, touches could be even harder for Michel to come by. The Patriots will need to have a 2018 AFC Championship like performance against the Chiefs for Michel to have any sort of value here.
Carlos Hyde at Miami
With Chris Carson likely missing the game with a knee sprain, Hyde will get the majority of the carries for Seattle. In what should be a shootout, Hyde could see plenty of goal-line action as well as some targets in the passing game. Miami has given up the fifth-most fantasy points to running backs so far, so watch out for Hyde in a sneaky good matchup.
Keenan Allen at Tampa Bay
Keenan Allen owners are protesting the streets of L.A. for Justin Herbert to be named the full-time starter for the Chargers. With Tyrod Taylor under center Week 1, Allen saw just eight targets. The last two weeks with the rookie under center, Allen has seen a whopping 29 targets. Allen has turned his ridiculous 33.5 percent target share into 20 catches for 228 yards and one touchdown. He needs to be in lineups due to volume alone and with Mike Williams (hamstring) questionable for this one, Allen could be in line for even more work if that’s possible.
CeeDee Lamb vs Cleveland
Lamb had a dream matchup against Seattle last week but saw only six targets. That should change this week as he has another mouth-watering matchup against the Browns. The four players Cleveland has given up the most receiving yards to this year are Marquise Brown (101 yards), Terry McLaurin (83 yards), Tyler Boyd (72 yards), and Willie Snead IV (64 yards). All these players saw at least 50 percent of their yards from the slot, which is where Lamb has done most of his damage as a Cowboy.
A.J. Green vs Jacksonville
As Burrow is slinging the ball all over the field, Green has failed to eclipse 51 yards or find the end zone this year. He saw 22 targets over the first two weeks, but caught just eight. Burrow has begun looking elsewhere, specifically in the red zone where he found Tee Higgins (2 targets) and Auden Tate (2 targets) instead. Green’s fantasy value is quickly diminishing and should be held out of lineups this week.
Zach Pascal at Chicago
With Parris Campbell and Michael Pittman Jr. out with injuries, Pascal will be turned too against the Bears in Week 4. In a similar situation last year, Pascal stepped in for the Colts and led them in targets (51) and receptions (28) from Week 8 beyond. Playing majority in the slot, Pascal is a solid sleeper option this week.
T.J. Hockenson vs New Orleans
Hockenson saw a season-high seven targets last week and has been efficient on the year catching 13-of-his-16 targets. He’s got a great matchup this week against a Saints defense allowing the most fantasy points to the tight end position this season.
Mike Gesicki vs Seattle
As we’re looking for some Fitzmagic this week, Gesicki will be the Dolphins best skill player for fantasy lineups. He’s caught a touchdown in back-to-back games and could exploit Seattle’s defense out of the slot, who have allowed the most targets, receiving yards and passing plays of over 15 yards to players in the slot this season, according to PFF. With Jamal Adams possibly out as well, fire up Gesicki this weekend.
Jimmy Graham vs Indianapolis
Graham has been a popular add this week, even appearing on our waiver wire list, as Nick Foles likes to target tight ends. However, this is not the week to bump Graham into your starting lineup. The Colts defense has been one of the best defenses in the league this season and have allowed an average of just two catches for 32 yards for 3.1 fantasy points per game to the position.
Dalton Schultz vs Cleveland
Since Blake Jarwin landed on injured reserve, Schultz has seen 16 targets, hauling in 13 of those. Much like his teammate Lamb, Schultz should see his fair share of work in the middle of the field against Cleveland. The Browns have allowed the third-most catches (22) and the third-most fantasy points to enemy tight ends this year.
Patriots Play of the Week
A N’Keal Harry revenge game we’ll call it, as N’Keal’s electric touchdown somehow did not get called in last year’s matchup with the Chiefs. This week, the Patriots will need to put up points to keep up with Patrick Mahomes and the Chiefs (duh). To do that, they will be forced to throw the ball, and do so downfield. The Patriots were in a similar situation Week 2 against Seattle and Harry saw a career high 12 targets, hauling in eight of those for 72 yards. With the Chiefs likely to focus in on Julian Edelman and the team’s running backs, Harry should have his opportunity to impact this game as his chemistry continues to build with Newton.
So, that is all for this week’s preview and all the information you need to win your matchup this week. If you have any additional questions regarding your lineup or specific players, leave a comment below or reach out on Twitter @iambrianhines. Best of luck all, you can do it.