Trevor Siemian has a great matchup this week
Streaming quarterbacks has never seemed so easy in fantasy football – as long as you pick the right ones. Three of the top five fantasy quarterbacks in Week 3 ended up being Jacoby Brissett, Case Kennum and Blake Bortles. Raise your hand if you saw that coming.
Will any of these quarterbacks have similar success in Week 4? Signs are pointing to no for most of them, but that doesn’t mean it won’t happen. And it’s not like these guys would be the worst option compared some of their peers either.
With that in mind, here are some quarterbacks (and defense/special teams) that I like in Week 4 and some I’m not so fond of. But first, let’s see how wise my advice was for Week 3.
Start Kirk Cousins (26.8 fantasy points) – Cousins had been struggling to start the season, but exploded against the Raiders with 365 passing yards and three TDs
Sit Philip Rivers (3.48 FP) – Rivers couldn’t get anything going against the Chiefs, even with all his fantasy weapons.
Start Cam Newton (8.28 FP) – If Newton can’t get it going against the Saints at home, it’s time to bench him for the foreseeable future
Sit Russell Wilson (33.52 FP) – This looked like a good call until the second half where Wilson proved he’s still a top-10 fantasy QB
START THESE QBS...
Trevor Siemian, DEN (vs. OAK)
Siemian came crashing back to earth last week. One week after scoring 27.64 fantasy points (thanks to four TD passes), he only managed to score 9.56 fantasy points last week on the road against the Bills. So, Siemian isn't a consistent fantasy starter, but he's easily a solid spot starter and this is a great matchup for him against a Raiders defense that’s allowed a 112.0 QB rating so far (third worst in the NFL) and given up the sixth-most fantasy points to QBs on the year. Stream Siemian this week.
Philip Rivers, LAC (at PHI)
Rivers is no longer a sure-fire start each week. He needs the right matchup and this week fits the bill. The Eagles have been inconsistent at best against the pass. They're allowing 266 passing yards per game as opponents are completing nearly 70 percent of their pass attempts. That should help Rivers bounce back after a dreadful showing in Week 3. Rivers has the weapons around him this year with a healthy Keenan Allen and a better running game. Even the offensive line seems to be improved from years past. If Rivers can focus on delivering short passes and taking some pressure off the offensive line, he should be a solid weapon to deploy in week 4.
Carson Palmer, ARI (vs. SF)
Palmer looks old and might be turning to dust right before our eyes, but he’s coming off his best game of the season last week against the Cowboys, where he scored 23.7 fantasy points and didn’t throw an interception. This week’s matchup is a good one for Palmer. The Cardinals just can’t run the ball, forcing Palmer to throw the ball 45-plus times in two of his first three games. He’s averaging close to 300 yards per game and about two touchdowns. He should easily do that this week against the 49ers.
MIGHT BE WORTH THE RISK...
Deshaun Watson, HOU (vs. TEN)
Watson is getting better and better with each start, and this week will be his first start at home. Believe it or not, over the past two weeks Watson has scored the eighth-most fantasy points among QBs and is coming off an outstanding 20.14-point performance against the Patriots – on the road. If you’re streaming QBs, Watson is a great option against a Titans defense that is currently allowing 26.18 fantasy points per game to opposing QBs (third most in the league).
SIT THESE QBs...
Cam Newton, CAR (at NE)
Newton just doesn’t look like he’s 100 percent healthy and since he’s no longer a running threat, he’s basically lost all fantasy value and it might even be worthwhile to cut him (depending on your options/league structure). On paper this week’s matchup against the Patriots looks great, as New England has given up the most fantasy points to QBs so far this season, but Newton has been so bad and is now missing Greg Olsen and potentially Kelvin Benjamin.
Matthew Stafford, DET (at MIN)
Deciding whether to start or sit Stafford can be a challenge. In games that you might sit him, he throws for four touchdowns, like in Week 1 against the Cardinals. Then, in games that should be a shootout with an appealing matchup he throws one touchdown pass, like last week against the Falcons. But you should sit Stafford this week against the Vikings. Stafford has only averaged 14.59 fantasy points per game in his last four games in Minnesota.
Jameis Winston, TB (vs. NYG)
Many thought Winston would break out this year and be a top-10 fantasy QB, and while that still might happen, Winston has really struggled in the early going. He has had some tough matchups though. Like last week in Minnesota, where he struggled with turnovers (three interceptions and had two fumbles, but he didn’t lose either). Things don’t get any easier this week against the Giants. New York’s defense is allowing only 188.7 passing yards per game and a low 14.51 fantasy points to QBs on the year.
YOU’VE BEEN WARNED...
Ben Roethlisberger, PIT (at BAL)
You don’t need to overthink this one. Big Ben + on the road + divisional game = sit. He was on the road last week against the Bears, and even with all his weapons, managed to score a meager 12 fantasy points. Since 2014, Big Ben has averaged only 13.72 fantasy points on the road, and this week he gets a good Ravens defense that is looking to right itself after getting crushed by the Jaguars in London last week.
START THESE DSTs...
Cincinnati Bengals (at CLE)
The Bengals’ defense isn’t the reason they are 0-3 to start the year. This DST scored 14 fantasy points last week against the Packers in Green Bay. This week’s matchup is even more favorable as the Bengals face the Browns and rookie QB DeShone Kizer. Through three games, DSTs are averaging 13 fantasy points when facing Cleveland.
New England Patriots (vs. CAR)
Okay, the Patriots’ defense has been downright awful to start the season. They have allowed a league-high 99 points after three weeks. But the past doesn’t matter if you are into streaming DSTs. This week the struggling and banged-up Panthers’ offense with an out-of-sorts Cam Newton is coming to town. Over the last two weeks, DSTs have averaged 12 fantasy points against Carolina.
SIT THESE DSTs...
Buffalo Bills (at ATL)
The Bills’ defense has been sneaky good so far this season, ranking eighth in fantasy points among DSTs. But traveling to Atlanta to play Matt Ryan and company will put a huge dent in that ranking. Two of the first three DSTs to face the high-flying Falcons finished with a mere two fantasy points, and the position has averaged just 5.67 points against them overall.
Washington Redskins (at KC, Mon.)
Normally you would think that it’s okay to start a defense going up against an Alex Smith-led team. But not this year, as Smith has Kareem Hunt and Tyreek Hill as his primary weapons. Opposing DSTs are struggling to score fantasy points against the Chiefs this year, averaging only 3.33 fantasy points per game.
— Written by Michael Horvath, who is part of the Athlon Contributor Network. Horvath is a Canadian who also happens to be a fantasy football (not to be confused with CFL) and fitness nut. Follow him on Twitter @realmikehorvath.