Fantasy Rankings: Week 4 Matchups To Consider
We are nearly a quarter of the way through the fantasy regular season, and each lineup decision feels like it carries more weight. The Ballers have their weekly rankings posted and I’m here to take look at players from each position that may need a little extra attention prior to locking in your roster for the week.
Of course, I want to hear from you, so drop a comment here or find me on Twitter: @KurtKnowsBest.
Jared Goff (DET) vs Seattle
Goff may have disappointed some fantasy managers last week after a QB8 finish in Week 2, but the streaming chance could be there again this week with the Lions hosting Seattle. Through three games, Goff has 7 passing TDs, but could be without his main receiving option in Amon-Ra St. Brown and starting RB D’Andre Swift.
The Ballers are pretty split on Goff in their rankings for Week 4. Andy has King Goffery as the QB5, while Mike has him completely out of the top-12 as the QB13.
While the Seahawks seem like a vulnerable defense to pick on, they gave up more than 20 points for the first time in 2022 last week and haven’t given up more than one passing TD in a game this season. As Kyle Borgognoni points out in his pace of play article this week, when you take a deeper look at the Lions passing efficiency Goff becomes a riskier play if he’s missing key pieces. I’d stream with caution.
Patrick Mahomes (KC) at Tampa Bay
If he’s on your roster, you’re starting Patrick Mahomes. His name isn’t on this list to convince you that you need him in your lineup. Mahomes is here because of the large disparity the Ballers have in their rankings this week regarding the Kansas City QB.
Jason and Mike have Mahomes as the QB2 and QB3 respectively, but Andy doesn’t even have him inside his top-12. Mahomes started the season hot with an overall QB1 performance against Arizona, but has finished as the QB13 and QB11 since. Obviously that isn’t the production fantasy managers are hoping for when they invested high draft capital for Mahomes during draft season.
Opposing QBs have finished as the QB31, QB26 and QB13 against this Buccaneers defense through the first 3 weeks and only give up 11.9 fantasy points per game to opposing QBs. I’m not saying don’t play Mahomes, but if you have a streaming option with a better matchup, it may be worth considering.
Dameon Pierce (HOU) vs LA Chargers
Pierce has started to pay off for fantasy managers after a disappointing Week 1, capping it off with a RB10 overall finish last week at Chicago. Nate Henry notes in his Snap Count Observations from Week 3, the Texans rookie back maintained his increased workload even with Rex Burkhead still receiving carries in the offense.
I’d put my money on Pierce to continue his top-12 streak this week against the LA Chargers. In consecutive weeks, opposing RBs have posted RB1 fantasy finishes against this LA defense (Clyde Edward-Helaire, RB10; James Robinson, RB7). The Chargers currently allow the 7th most points to fantasy RBs through 3 weeks.
The Ballers each have Pierce as a top-24 RB for Week 4. I’d have Pierce written in ink on my lineup card for this week.
Joe Mixon (CIN) vs Miami
After consecutive weeks with top-20 RB finishes, Mixon disappointed fantasy managers in Week 3 with a RB43 performance. Many expected Mixon to help the Bengals grind the clock out, but an ankle injury allowed Samaje Perine to play most of the 4th Quarter.
Mixon is listed as a buy-low candidate by Rob Wilson in his weekly article since he hasn’t found paydirt yet in 2022. What should be encouraging to fantasy managers looking to acquire or hold Mixon is his work in the passing game for Cincinnati. Mixon has seen at least 4 targets in every game this season.
The Ballers all have faith in Mixon despite a tough matchup against Miami on Thursday night. Mixon is ranked inside the top-6 RBs for Andy, Jason and Mike for Week 4. Make sure Mixon is out of your FLEX and in your RB spot to start your week off strong.
Chase Edmonds (MIA) at Cincinnati
If I could make the alarm bells ring through your device when you got to this point of the article I would. I bought into Chase Edmonds everywhere I could during draft season, and even pursued him in Dynasty leagues. While Edmonds turned in an RB11 finish in Week 3, it’s the lack of consistent usage that makes him a huge gamble week to week.
None of the Ballers have Edmonds even listed as a FLEX option, ranking him outside the top-36 RBs. However, there may be fantasy managers still having to consider Edmonds in their lineup due to injuries elsewhere in their rosters.
The Bengals are middle of the road currently regarding opposing fantasy RBs, but they have given up some big fantasy finishes that could make you feel better about taking a chance on Edmonds Thursday night. In Week 2 Tony Pollard finished as the RB3 and last week Breece Hall finished as the RB19. Most of their production against Cincinnati’s defense came in the passing game with a combined 10 receptions for 108 yards.
Neither Edmonds or Mostert have a stranglehold on the targets coming out of the backfield, but if you have to choose, I’m willing to follow the Dolphins money and bet on Edmonds if you’re in a pinch.
Elijah Moore (NYJ) at Pittsburgh
A change at QB for the Jets couldn’t come fast enough for Elijah Moore. Zach Wilson returning to the lineup could be a welcome sight for fantasy managers holding him. The second-year WR has been on the field plenty, seeing 90% of snaps and at least 7 targets per week.
Each of the Ballers has Moore at WR39 or lower on their weekly rankings, but the Steelers defense is giving up the 11th most passing yards per game. The last time we saw Zach Wilson and Elijah Moore on the field in a regular season game together, Moore finished as the WR9 on the week.
Matt DiSorbo notes in his Stats and Expectation Trends for this week, Moore was one of the highest underachieving pass catchers in Week 3 and if we learned anything from Chris Olave being able to turn that stat around into fantasy relevance, I’d be willing to roll the dice on Moore as a FLEX play in Week 4.
Davante Adams (LV) vs Denver
Of course, you’re going to play Davante Adams. Let’s get that out of the way. That said, fantasy managers that invested their early picks in Adams would be lying if they said they at least weren’t considering an alternative after WR46 and WR32 finishes the last 2 weeks. For reference, the last time Adams finished outside the top-24 WRs in consecutive weeks was Weeks 7 & 9 of 2017 (Bye Week in Week 8).
Adams saw his targets go back up and got into the endzone again against Tennessee last week, but it’s the 7.2 yards per catch that held him back. Still, Adams has a 29% target share in an offense that’s throwing the ball a ton so he’s likely to be back in the top-24.
The Ballers still have their faith in what Adams can do, with Andy, Mike and Jason each having him as their WR5 this week. A third week outside of the top-24 against a tough Broncos defense will make fantasy managers hit the panic button.
Richie James Jr (NYG) vs Chicago
My fellow Middle Tennessee State Blue Raider may be an extremely necessary option for the Giants this week with the injuries piling up in their receiving room. James has been very involved for New York every week, seeing at least 5 targets per week. AJ Passman says as much in the Targets Per Route Run Report for this week.
Currently, James ranks 24th in the league in targets per route run, seeing a ball thrown his way 23% of the time. That’s currently higher than Deebo Samuel, Davante Adams and Michael Pittman Jr.
The Ballers don’t have James ranked in play consideration for Week 4, but the potential for an increased workload and dependency on James makes him an intriguing FLEX option for Week 4.
Dallas Goedert (PHI) vs Jacksonville
Goedert has posted back-to-back top-10 TE weeks for fantasy managers. As Ryan DeVaney points out in his article of things learned from Week 3, the Eagles offense was plenty effective without Jalen Hurts running the ball which should help managers feel better about having Goedert in their lineup regardless of the matchup.
Andy has Goedert ranked as his TE3 for Week 4 against a Jacksonville defense that is only allowing 5.4 fantasy points to the TE position per week. It’s worth noting that the Jaguars stopped Gerald Everett’s top-12 TE streak last week, so Goedert may be relying on getting into the endzone to crack the top-12 again.
George Kittle (SF) vs LA Rams
Fantasy managers got the 49ers star TE back last week to disappointing results. Kittle saw the third-most targets on the team, but only had 28 yards on the day. What’s encouraging is Kittle was on the field for 91% of snaps.
Even with the lackluster debut, Kittle still finds himself inside each of the Ballers top-7 TEs for the week, with Andy being the highest on him at TE4. The Rams are allowing the 2nd fewest points to the TE position on the season, with the highest fantasy finish from a starting TE coming last week to Zach Ertz as the TE15.