The Biggest Start/Sit Decisions for Week 4 (Fantasy Football)
“Fantasy football is a cruel mistress at times.”
— Andy Holloway
Annyeong, Footclan! Welcome to Week 4 of the Start/Sit series, where we’ll identify and discuss your most commonly asked “Who should I start?” questions for the week.
The projections between any two players on your roster may appear similar, but this “simple” choice could be the difference between your team’s victory or defeat. Luckily, the Fantasy Footballers have created an amazing Start/Sit tool to easily compare any two (or more) players with insight from the Ballers themselves, and trust me — it’s an extremely valuable asset that will help you make these crucial lineup decisions that could ultimately lead you to your #FootClanTitle. Please note that the Footballers’ rankings are constantly being updated as news breaks, so make sure you check out the tool for yourself to catch any last-second changes.
So, without further ado, let’s kick things off with the most popular Start/Sit questions for Week 4:
David Njoku (CLE) or Gerald Everett (LAC)?
|Andy Rank||TE #12||TE #13|
|Mike Rank||TE #11||TE #13|
|Jason Rank||TE #10||TE #13|
There’s a strong likelihood that you’re struggling at the TE position unless you had enough foresight to draft Mark Andrews or Travis Kelce. That’s probably why these two guys — particularly, David Njoku — dominated this week’s Start/Sit searches. It makes sense since he blew up last week against the Steelers for 9 catches on 10 targets for 89 yards and a TD, finishing as fantasy’s TE2. Before this eruption, he was the overall TE36; he’s now tied with the Muth at TE8.
We all saw should’ve seen this coming as he was paid handsomely to be a potential top-two target on the team, and he finally lived up to expectations with a whopping 32% target share and seeing an average of 90% offensive snaps. In his five previous seasons, he’s only had three other games where he’s seen that many snaps, and he’s NEVER come close to hitting that target share. He’ll attempt to heat up against the second BEST matchup for opposing TEs in the Falcons, who just gave up 21 fantasy points to Seattle’s TEs. This is why Chief is a viable streamer, a recommended DFS play, and Andy’s TE Start of the Week.
However… what we should also see coming is a monumental letdown as he typically goes back into hiding after his occasional flash performances. Njoku has had 12 games where he’s finished as a top-12 TE and then played again the next week; he’s averaged only 4.0 points in those subsequent games. His coach admitted his usage is scheme dependent as he’s great at blocking. Can he buck the trend, or was this just a sign of things to come?
On the other end is Gerald Everett, a fellow 2017 draftee who has annually garnered hope despite middling results. He’s been great (for TE standards) in the first two weeks, and though he faltered recently, we can blame that on a dysfunctional team meltdown and an impaired QB. He’s also taken advantage of an injured Keenan Allen, who may remain absent in Houston after reaggravating his hamstring. But with Justin Herbert not at 100% and in a tougher matchup with a lower implied total, all three Ballers prefer Njoku.
David Njoku, but it’s riskier than it seems.
Russell Wilson (DEN) or Jared Goff (DET)?
|Andy Rank||QB #14||QB #7|
|Mike Rank||QB #10||QB #13|
|Jason Rank||QB #11||QB #12|
Don’t look now, but after three weeks of football, Jared Goff is now fantasy’s QB11. Meanwhile, Russell Wilson is the QB25. Goff is a popular streamer despite losing D’Andre Swift and Amon-Ra St. Brown because of his surprising TD prowess (7 TDs; tied for fifth most) and upcoming showdown against a lackluster Seattle team. However, the Seahawks’ slow-as-molasses pace of play along with their defense that has only allowed one passing TD thus far makes him a riskier bet than it would appear.
The main argument for Wilson is that it simply can’t get any worse. His first season as a Bronco has been the worst of his career in adjusted yards per attempt, touchdown rate, quarterback rating, and completion percentage over expectation. However, if just a few plays went differently or a few catches were made, his final stat line would be vastly improved. This may be the week he finally puts it all together as he faces a porous Raiders defense that just let Ryan Tannehill score through the air and on the ground.
Andy is bullish on Goff (his QB Start of the Week) and equally bearish on Wilson (Mike’s Start of the Week). But I’m rolling the dice on the Dangerwich for one last ride.
Chris Olave (NO) or Mike Williams (LAC)?
|Andy Rank||WR #30||WR #20|
|Mike Rank||WR #30||WR #23|
|Jason Rank||WR #24||WR #25|
This basically boils down to “which QB is healthier?” We know Mike Williams can explode on any given Sunday, but he’s just as likely to bust as most of his fantasy points come from his top five plays. We also now know that rookie Chris Olave is a legitimate stud after posting back-to-back games with over 30% targets per route run. Williams thrives on the deep ball, which he may not see as often with Justin Herbert battling fractured rib cartilages. And Olave has formed a strong connection with the NFL’s most aggressive passer, Jameis Winston, who is willing to pepper his favorite target with IDGAF bombs into tight coverage… but Winston may not even play this week.
Olave if Winston is playing, otherwise I’d stick with Williams.
Khalil Herbert (CHI) or Jamaal Williams (DET)?
|Andy Rank||RB #22||RB #11|
|Mike Rank||RB #20||RB #10|
|Jason Rank||RB #17||RB #11|
It’s the battle of the backups! Both Khalil Herbert and Jamaal Williams went absolutely HAM last week, finishing as the week’s RB1 and RB2, respectively. Both guys had the exact same workload (20 carries, 2 targets) and found the endzone twice, although Herbert gained nearly doubled the number of rushing yards (157 to 87) while Williams eeked out the win in receiving yards (12 to 7). Both teams will offer their backfields plenty of opportunities, but Chicago is by far the most run-heavy as they ran the ball 40 times last week while passing just 17 times, making Herbert the stronger FanDuel and DraftKings DFS play. He also has the edge in matchup rankings, but don’t be fooled: Seattle can be easily run over as they’ve given up an average of 24.8 fantasy points to opposing RBs.
Assuming both their starters are inactive, I’d favor Herbert (Andy’s RB Start of the Week) but would find a way to play both.
Jeff Wilson Jr. (SF) or Dameon Pierce (HOU)?
Jeff Wilson Jr.
|Andy Rank||RB #18||RB #15|
|Mike Rank||RB #21||RB #22|
|Jason Rank||RB #21||RB #18|
This is essentially “lead RB in bad matchup” vs “unsure workload in great matchup.” Jeff Wilson Jr. has secured the 49ers’ backfield after being involved in 73% of offensive snaps compared to Jordan Mason’s 9%. Unfortunately, it only amounted to 12 rushing attempts and 3 targets, but Wilson made the most of it with 106 total yards. His lower usage could be excused by poor game script as the team struggled against a stout Denver defense, but things won’t get any easier against the Rams’ impenetrable front that left James Conner with just 57 total yards from 18 opportunities.
Meanwhile, rookie Dameon Pierce is fresh off a breakout showcase where he ran for 80 yards and a TD on 20 carries and caught both his targets for 21 additional yards. However, he’s still in a timeshare with journeyman Rex Burkhead, who saw 41% snaps to Pierce’s 59%. But Pierce is clearly their budding star, so look for him to heat up against a Chargers defense that is allowing the 7th most points to RBs and just lost DE Joey Bosa.
Agree on Pierce. He becomes a top 10 back this week!