The Fantasy Footballers’ Rankings Audit & Podcast Highlights for Week 4
Welcome in, #Footclan! It’s football time!
The Thursday Night Football match between the winless New York Jets and Denver Broncos was much more entertaining than it was supposed to be. We witnessed Broncos WR Jerry Jeudy‘s incredible first touchdown catch, an absolutely beautiful interception by Jets DB Pierre Desir, and Sam Darnold dropping dimes while gutting out a brutal slam on his right shoulder. But most impressive of all was an unexpected appearance by Sammy and his Jets:
SAM DARNOLD DID THAT. #TakeFlight
— NFL (@NFL) October 2, 2020
What a great way to kick off an exciting new batch of games in Week 4 of the National Football League!
As a reminder, this article is another weekly installment where I’ll review the Fantasy Footballers’ player rankings and highlight a few specific players per position that deserve extra attention. I’ll also recap important moments from the past week’s Fantasy Footballers’ podcast episodes with links to each episode provided. So be on the lookout every week for this series!
Also, please keep in mind that the Footballers’ rankings are constantly being updated whenever any breaking news is released. So always refer to their rankings page or click on a specific player below to see their latest rankings!
Now let’s get to it!
Josh Allen, Buffalo Bills
QB3. QB3. QB3. I’m either talking about 3rd-string QBs Jameis Winston, Alex Smith, and Blake “the Snake” Bortles, or I’m listing Bills’ QB Josh Allen‘s weekly finishes so far this year. Despite his safe floor and upside that made him the overall QB2, Allen’s ranking has the most disparity between the guys. He’s Andy’s QB9, Jason’s QB5, Mike’s QB3, and the consensus QB6. He does face the Las Vegas Raiders, who’ve given up the 5th least points to QBs. But look deeper. The Raiders may be stingy to QBs, but they have given up the MOST points to RBs in the league. Sure, that stat may be skewed by their opponents in Week 1, Christian McCaffrey, and Week 2, Alvin Kamara. But the most productive RB group was shockingly their Week 3 opponent, the New England Patriots’ Rex Burkhead and Sony Michel, who ended as the RB2 and RB15, respectively. And guess what? Allen is arguably the Bills’ RB1, and most definitely is their goal-line back, especially with Zack Moss nursing a toe injury. It didn’t work out for Cam Newton last week, but I have more faith in Allen. Regardless of his passing production (which has been remarkable thus far), he is a near-lock for a rushing score. Allen is my sneaky Week 4 favorite to usurp the hallowed QB1 throne.
Ryan Fitzpatrick, Miami Dolphins
After a rough start in Gillette Stadium, Ryan Fitzpatrick and his magnificent beard bounced back with QB11 and QB6 performances against the Bills and Jaguars. He is officially heating up and will have his chance to catch fire against a Seahawks’ defense that has given up the 2nd MOST points to QBs. Not only is he a favorite DFS play, he’s also Jason’s Start of the Week. The game is expected to be a shootout and has the 3rd highest implied scoring total. We have every indication that Fitzpatrick will have a big game, though the guys are cautiously optimistic with a consensus QB14 ranking. However, managers with experience playing Fitzpatrick are aware of the unpredictable swings in his productivity. I would personally recommend playing him this Sunday, but caution that a volatile Fitzpatrick is always a risky play, especially with rookie Tua Tagovailoa waiting in the wings.
2 passing TDs, 1 rushing and a @MiamiDolphins win…
— NFL (@NFL) September 25, 2020
Running Back Rankings
Kenyan Drake, Arizona Cardinals
Simply put, Arizona’s Kenyan Drake has been a disappointment thus far. In the past three games, he’s finished as the RB17, RB28, and RB28. It’s still early, but Drake’s high draft cost has not paid off as he’s only accumulated a measly 32.4 total half PPR points, making him the overall RB24. It’s possible that QB Kyler Murray‘s phenomenal rushing abilities and WR DeAndre Hopkins‘ high target share could be to blame for Drake’s fantasy troubles, as he’s only had one rushing attempt inside the five. That lone goal-line carry also resulted in his only TD this season. But his next opponent, the Carolina Panthers, are just the remedy he and his fantasy GMs need. The last three RBs against Carolina have finished as the RB1 (Josh Jacobs), RB3 (Leonard Fournette), and RB5 (Austin Ekeler). But against other teams? RB24 & RB31 (Jacobs), RB65 & RB56 (Fournette), and RB35 & RB15 (Ekeler). There’s a reason he’s the ‘Ballers’ consensus RB5 and Jason’s Start of the Week. This should be a get-right game for Drake, who could also see a higher workload with receivers Hopkins (ankle) and Christian Kirk (groin) both declared game-time decisions.
Devin Singletary, Buffalo Bills
Speaking of great matchups, Bills RB Devin Singletary has a wonderful one himself against a Las Vegas Raiders defense that has given up the MOST points to RBs. The last three RBs that played against the Raiders all finished as the RB2 that week. And while those RBs include studs Christian McCaffrey and Alvin Kamara, it also includes journeyman Patriot Rex Burkhead. Even the lackluster Sony Michel got in on the action and reached 140 all-purpose yards to finish as Week 3’s RB15. Coming in as the ‘Ballers RB16, Singletary should see enough volume to take advantage of this sublime matchup. Bruiser Zack Moss has been back at practice, but even if he plays, it will likely be in a limited fashion. QB Josh Allen will continue to vulture carries at the end zone, but Singletary should still see the majority of touches and is set to finally score for the first time this season in Vegas.
— NFL (@NFL) September 27, 2020
Wide Receiver Rankings
DK Metcalf, Seattle Seahawks
Welcome to the top two, DK Metcalf! Currently the gang’s consensus WR2, Metcalf is expected to have a monster game against the turbulent Miami Dolphins. His counterpart, Tyler Lockett, has a consensus ranking of WR5 (although Mike is the only one to rank him higher than Metcalf). They both have great matchups and should thrive against Miami’s vulnerable secondary. But to be fair, it doesn’t matter who their opponent is as long as Russell Wilson keeps cooking and resumes his prolonged shellacking against the league’s defenses. The Wilson-to-Metcalf connection has proven unstoppable, and he should continue to boost your lineup this weekend. Let’s just hope he secures the ball this time:
The @dallascowboys get the ball back following the touchback.
— NFL (@NFL) September 27, 2020
D.J. Moore, Carolina Panthers
Let’s be honest, D.J. Moore hasn’t been the “discount WR1” you thought you drafted. But don’t lose hope. Moore still leads the team in targets, and has the league’s 9th most targets and the 4th most air yards among WRs. He’s a recommended trade target. He’s also Mike’s Start of the Week. This week may not appear to be a good matchup as they play the Cardinals, who have given up the 2nd least fantasy points to WRs. But that includes layup games against San Francisco and Washington’s unheralded receiving options. Moore’s expected to be shadowed by Patrick Peterson (with some coverage by a limited Dre Kirkpatrick), who is no longer the shutdown corner he used to be. He’s the ‘Ballers’ WR14, but his heavy involvement, high air yards, and scoring upside could make him a WR1. If all goes right, this week will serve as a reminder to fantasy managers of why you drafted Moore.
Hunter Renfrow, Las Vegas Raiders
And then there was Hun. Hunter Renfrow, that is. The second-year receiver now finds himself as the Raiders’ WR1 due to unfortunate injuries to Henry Ruggs (hamstring; doubtful) and Bryan Edwards (ankle; out). Well, technically TE Darren Waller is their WR1, but I digress. Renfrow finds himself in an opportune spot as the slot receiver against a charitable Buffalo defense who has given up 100+ yards and a TD to opposing slot receivers. The exception is Isaiah Ford, who still produced a decent 76 yards from seven catches. Renfrow is likely to land somewhere between Ford and the others (Jamison Crowder, Mike Gesicki, Cooper Kupp). It certainly helps that he received nine targets last week against the Patriots. Renfrow is the crew’s WR38 but has sneaky upside to improve on that ranking. It might not be ideal, but there are definitely worse flex options.
Tight End Rankings
Zach Ertz, Philadelphia Eagles
There’s a lot to like about Zach Ertz this week, even against a hampered yet resilient 49ers. His “1B” TE Dallas Goedert has a high ankle sprain and will be out for multiple weeks. WRs DeSean Jackson and Alshon Jeffery have already been ruled out, leaving second-year Greg Ward as Wentz’s lead wideout. Needless to say, Ertz is going to FEAST on all the targets he can handle. Andy and Mike both have him as their TE6, while Jason is the lone dissenter with a TE2 rank. I lean towards Jason’s ranking as Ertz will have an insane boost on his already high target share.
Ertz sticks it with one hand 🖐 #FlyEaglesFly
— NFL (@NFL) September 27, 2020
Rob Gronkowski, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Is it finally time for a 2020 Gronk smash? Gronkowski has clearly been a disappointment, although savvy #Footclan members hopefully listened to the ‘Ballers advice and faded him on draft day. He’s only seen 11 targets in three weeks, and goose-egged believers in Week 2 against the Panthers. But it’s encouraging to see that seven of those 11 targets happened last week. His upcoming matchup against the Chargers is not one to shy away from. WR Chris Godwin has been declared out, freeing up even more targets for Gronkowski. The Bucs also lose another goal-line producer with RB Leonard Fournette out. He may be buried on the ‘Ballers’ rankings as the TE21, but he’s still Andy’s Start of the Week. To be honest, I thought we’d see a classic Gronk game last week. Maybe I was a week early…
Biggest Takeaways from the Week 4 Podcasts
Monday (Week 3 Studs & Stinkers + Magically Delicious)
We kick off the week with Andy, Mike, and Jason sharing their favorite Monday Punday submissions at 03:30:
— Fantasy Footballers (@TheFFBallers) September 28, 2020
Next is a recap of last Sunday’s game on the Weekly Rewind at 05:20. The ‘Ballers then discuss all their Fantasy Studmuffins at 13:45, before moving to the Stinkers of the Week at 35:45.
Tuesday (Week 4 Waivers + Full Stream Ahead, Don’t Tilt!)
In this episode, Andy, Mike, and Jason recap Patrick Mahomes and the Kansas City Chiefs’ victory over the “tilting” Lamar Jackson and the Baltimore Ravens on Monday Night Football at 00:43. They move on to News & Notes at 06:50 before getting to the juiciest part of the episode: the Week 4 Waivers at 15:55, including a fantasy PSA to not give up!
If your season is off to a rough start… Don't tilt! #FantasyFootball
— Fantasy Footballers (@TheFFBallers) September 29, 2020
Next up are their choices for Team Defense Streamers at 45:35 and QB Streamers at 47:45. We wrap up the episode with a Mailbag segment at 49:40, including a recommendation by Jason to not trade Michael Thomas at a discount.
Wednesday (Week 4 Buy or Sell + PANIC ROOM Players)
The ‘Ballers kick off this episode with the Buy or Sell segment at 03:35, discussing hotly-debated players like Amari Cooper, DeVante Parker, and Darrell Henderson Jr. They move onto News & Notes at 09:10, discussing the latest news such as the postponed game between the Pittsburgh Steelers and the COVID-stricken Tennessee Titans. Next up at 18:40 is the Panic Room segment where the gang discusses their temperament for WRs D.J. Moore (19:20), Odell Beckham Jr. (23:20), Marquise Brown (28:35), and TE Mark Andrews (35:45). Afterward, the guys get into the Thursday Night Preview for the battle between the winless Denver Broncos and New York Jets at 39:30. They then finish up the episode by answering Mailbag questions at 45:20.
Thursday (Starts of the Week + Week 4 Breakdown, “Having a Trouble”)
Thursday’s episode starts with the Taking It Up To 100 segment, where the guys discuss Melvin Gordon, Marquez Valdes-Scantling, Hunter Renfrow 04:05. That’s followed by the News & Notes at 08:25, then the ‘Ballers talk about the upcoming matchups in the Fantasy Forecast at 19:55, including a discussion on the upcoming #CatBattle between the Bengals and Jaguars at 24:50:
Which players are you starting in the #CatBattle?
— Fantasy Footballers (@TheFFBallers) October 1, 2020
We then hit the meat & taters of the episode at 47:45, the ‘Ballers Starts of the Week! And don’t forget Jason Moore’s Iron-Clad Locked and Loaded 100% Guaranteed Boom-Boom Kicker of the Week at 56:00!
Friday (Week 4 Matchups + Swedish Hamstrings, In-or-Out)
The ‘Ballers recap Thursday Night Football’s surprisingly entertaining game at 00:45, while lamenting Adam Gase’s apparent stranglehold on the coaching position. They discuss Footclan Fridays at 04:05 before hitting the News & Notes at 06:20. Afterward, the crew hits the Fantasy Forecast for the remaining Week 2 matchups at 14:35, including a “deserved” apology by Jason at 48:22 during the Falcons at Packers segment, before rounding off the episode at 52:50 with their can’t-miss segment, Prop It Like It’s Hot!
"I deserve to apologize." –@jasonffl
— Fantasy Footballers (@TheFFBallers) October 2, 2020
Have a great weekend #Footclan and let’s crush all our matchups! If you haven’t done so yet, make sure you check out the awesome Week 4 DFS Podcast by Kyle Borgognoni (@kyle_borg) and Matthew Betz (@TheFantasyPT). And as always, remember to tune in Sunday for Mike’s livestream where he provides last-minute updates to help you make those crucial roster decisions!