What’s up everybody? Your usual Sunday roundup author, Donkey Teeth, is in a bit of a predicament, so I’m stepping in to help you catch up on the Sunday games. What predicament is DT in, you ask? Glad to spill the secrets! See, DT is a member of an elite club of adventurers who, upon the release of pumpkin spice lattes in the fall, gather in Los Angeles for their annual Kart Across America race. Donning the costumes of their favorite Mario Kart character, the group hops on actual go karts to race across the great American highways at 20 MPH. This year, our beloved DT — dressed as his hero Wario — took a banana to the face and crashed into an In-N-Out just outside of El Segundo. Of course, he lost his wallet in the crash. He’s also slightly blinded from the animal sauce that got in his eyes. Yet, he wants to finish the race, so he got back on the kart, took some mushroom power, and was last seen drifting by Lake Tahoe.
ENYWHEY, let’s take a look at some of the highlights for Sunday’s NFL games for your fantasy football teams.
Baker Mayfield — Why am I starting out with my vote for the least interesting QB? Because the Browns put up 49 points and Mayfield went 19/30 for 165 yards and 2TDs. His receiver Jarvis Landry went 1/1 for 37 yards and 1TD…as a quarterback. I know I sound like a broken record on Mayfield, but he’s been less than impressive through four games this season for fantasy purposes, but his fanbase is so rabid that he maintains a strong fantasy following. In Yahoo leagues, Mayfield is rostered more than Teddy Bridgewater, Ryan Fitzpatrick, Derek Carr, Justin Herbert, and Gardner Minshew. All of those QBs have more fantasy points than Mayfield so far. As I mentioned in the off-season, Mayfield gets better as the season goes on and he becomes more familiar with the playbook. Hopefully he takes the next step and becomes a more productive fantasy quarterback.
Dak Prescott — 502 yards and 4TDs, 1INT, and the Cowboys still took the loss. From a fantasy perspective, Prescott is gold. The Cowboys’ defense hasn’t been stopping many teams, and Prescott is producing massive yards. Prescott was the #5 QB in my rest of season rankings last week, and he’s leading the league in yards/game. If you’re in DFS or H2H, Prescott is a must roster for his gaudy opportunities. Put another way, Prescott’s passing output — just for week 4 — was nearly as much as Lamar Jackson’s passing output over the first three weeks of the season.
Odell Beckham — 2 rushes for 73 yards and 1TD, 5 rec for 81 yards and 2 TDs. ODB needed a breakout, and fantasy managers were waiting for this kind of production.
Dalvin Cook — 130 yards on 27 carries and 2 TDs. Cook looked electric rushing to the edges and beating out the Texans’ defense. The Vikings offense as a whole still looked questionable, and the Vikes’ eeked out a win thanks to some bad offensive play by the Texans on their final drive (like, needing to go 70 yards and rushing Duke Johnson up the middle with less than 3 minutes left). Cook is still the center of the Vikings offense, and hopefully as Justin Jefferson emerges, there will be more opportunity for Cook to run.
Justin Jefferson — 4 catches for 103 yards, and his second 100-yard receiving game in a row. If he’s still on the waiver wire in your league, you gotta grab him.
Adam Thielen — 8 catches for 114 yards and a TD. Vikings DEF is pretty awful this year and the Vikes will need to pass a lot to stay in the games. Cousins has been less than impressive but Thielen has been involved enough to justify that WR1 ranking for many teams.
Will Fuller — 6 receptions, 108 yards, and 1 TD. That TD was a blown coverage by the Vikings’ backup backup safety, George Iloka. Fuller almost had another TD at the end of the game but the ball was ruled to be bobbled as he landed. Texans’ coach Bill O’Brien deployed a lot of questionable offensive calls, and with Fuller going up against a banged-up Vikings D and the inadequate George Iloka, Fuller should have gotten more looks.
Joe Mixon — 151 yards on 15 carries for 2 TDs, and 6 receptions for 30 yards and 1 TD. I told you last week that Mixon was due to break out, and here it was. Mixon’s usage rate in the Bengals’ offense is still huge, but Mixon’s production is hampered by a weak offensive line. With Burrow getting in sync with the Bengals’ passing game, Mixon’s chances for big fantasy games should improve.
Gardner Minshew — Minshew mania pushed the sophomore QB into the starting lineups of many teams in 12-team leagues, and he probably shouldn’t have been there. Minshew is a boom-or-bust QB, and his yardage and TDs were nothing special. However, in Week 4, Minshew threw for a gaudy 351 yards and 2 TDs, which will get a lot of people back on board for Minshew mania. If your QB1 is Carson Wentz or Jared Goff, it wouldn’t hurt to have somebody like Minshew as the backup.
D.J. Chark — Chark snared 8 receptions for 95 yards and 2 TDs after coming back from a chest injury. He basically outdid his entire 2020 stats in this week 4 game, so that’s a promising sign that he’ll live up to the hype he had in the pre-season.
Matt Stafford — 17/31 for 206 yards, 3 TDs. That’s a really inefficient game for the Lions’ signal caller, but fantasy owners will take it. Stafford should bounce back this year, and the yardage was nearly 30% below his average from week 1-3.
Emmanuel Sanders — The Saints’ de facto #1 WR had a really tough week 2 when he was supposed to be huge in the absence of Michael Thomas. After that 1 catch performance against the Raiders, Sanders has snared 10 catches on 14 targets for 149 yards and a TD across weeks 3 and 4. Michael Thomas should be coming back soon, but hopefully that just opens up the passing game for more opportunities for Sanders, who seems to have built a rapport with Drew Brees.
Ryan Fitzpatrick — A large segment of the fantasy football community really likes Fitzpatrick, and it’s not hard to see why. In real life, he looks like a mountain man gone metro, and he’s put the dismal Miami Dolphins team on his shoulders for the past year. He knows he’s not the future of the franchise, but he keeps going out week after week as if he’s the face of the Dolphins until the year 2030. That said, Fitzpatrick has passed into the end zone only 4 times this year, and the Seahawks limited him to a rushing TD only in week 4. Another prototypical boom-or-bust QB, Fitzpatrick is best served as a best ball QB, and probably shouldn’t be on your roster unless you’re in a 16-team league.
Dwayne Haskins — The internet rumor mill is awash with whether Haskins will remain the quarterback in Washington. Now, Haskins hasn’t thrilled — either last year or this year — but he was also a rookie last year finishing out with a lame duck coaching staff, and current head coach Ron Rivera has been battling cancer. During the week 4 game, Ron Rivera was not feeling well and many observers noticed it. As the Washington Football Team struggled against the stout Ravens’ DEF, Haskins managed 314 yards and a rush for a TD. That’s nothing to get excited about for fantasy purposes, but those dynasty managers who had been hoping for a Haskins’ breakout in 2021 will have to keep waiting. Haskins shouldn’t be rostered in most redraft fantasy formats, and troubled superflex owners would be wise to put in $1 bids on Alex Smith in case Haskins struggles again.
Terry McLaurin — F1 took 10 receptions on 14 targets for 118 yards. F1 is on pace for 104 receptions and 1,548 yards over 16 weeks. Razzball’s Rudy Gamble was the highest ranker on F1, and he set the trend for fantasy managers racing to McLaurin. At the start of fantasy draft season, experts took McLaurin around the 7th-8th round. As drafts finished near Week 1 of the season, McLaurin was often taken in the 4th-5th round. If Haskins makes even a notch of improvement, or Alex Smith comes back in a usable manner, McLaurin could get those TDs that would make him a 2020 fantasy superstar.
Lamar Jackson — 14/21 for 193 yards, 2 TDs, 1INT, and 53 yards rushing for another TD. LJax remains fairly efficient, but from a fantasy perspective, he’s not living up to the round 2/3 draft value that many expected. The Ravens simply aren’t passing enough at the start of the season to make LJax an elite fantasy QB. With 32 rushes to 23 passes in their Week 4 game, it’s easy to see how LJax has a limited fantasy ceiling under the current play calling regime. In a week where Dak Prescott put up 35 points in most formats, LJax’s 24 points simply isn’t enough passing production to keep your fantasy team in competition.
Tom Brady — 369 yards and 5TDs. There we go! Best ballers are dancing with joy at Brady’s performance. Targeting 9 receivers, Brady finally had his breakout game under Bruce Arians’ offense. Hopefully his success continues into Week 5, because a lot of fantasy managers bet on the star-studded Bucs offense to bring them fantasy glory.
Mike Evans — Evans has had a boom-or-bust start to the season, and Week 4 game him another boom, with 7 catches for 122 yards and a touchdown. If Brady has finally mastered the Arians offense, expect more big games from Mike Evans.
O.J. Howard — Looks like he tore his Achilles tendon and will be done for the year. Brady had been targeting Howard a surprising amount, and perhaps Howard’s poor luck will be the opening for Rob Gronkowski to become a pass catcher for the Bucs. More likely, Brady will target RoJo or Fournette more.
Ronald Jones — 20 carries for 111 yards with another 6 catches for 17 yards. Leonard Fournette had been rumored to take the lead back job with the Bucs, but a performance like this from RoJo will undoubtedly change the coaches’ minds. Until Fournette returns to the field — and probably even afterward — Jones remains an intriguing fantasy start. However, the Bucs offense has a lot of talent, and it would be difficult to predict which player will carry the load each week.
Justin Herbert — 20/25 for 290 yards, 3TDs, and 1INT. Herbert also led the Chargers in rushing with 14 yards. The first year QB, who became the Chargers’ starter after a freak Week 2 injury to veteran Tyrod Taylor, has been putting up gaudy yardage numbers so far, and this week showed Herbert’s ability to get some touchdowns as well. Averaging over 300 yards/game so far, Herbert is a must start in superflex and deep leagues, and is approaching must start levels for 12-team leagues.
Austin Ekeler — His his hamstring in the first quarter and did not return. His status for Week 5 is questionable.
Teddy Bridgewater — 276 yards, 2 TDs in the air and one on the ground while he added another 32 yards. In charge of the Panthers’ offense, Bridgewater has been putting up some high yardage numbers while missing the end zone, so his 3 combined touchdowns in Week 4 show promise. He’s been connecting well with Robby Anderson, who had 8 catches for 99 yards. With Curtis Samuel and D.J. Moore on the team and backup RB Mike Davis holding the fort until the return of Christian McCaffrey, the Panthers could be a sneaky offense to help fantasy owners in the second half of the season.
Kyler Murray — 133 yards…but 3 TDs. That’s not thrilling from a fantasy perspective. However, he added another 78 yards on the ground, which upped his fantasy pointage into usable territory. The Panthers are not stout against the pass, which made it more surprising that the prolific Cardinals’ passing attack did so little in Week 4. Kyler is ranked as my number 4 QB for the rest of the 2020 season, so I expect he’ll bounce back in Week 5.
Christian Kirk — Kirk was a popular WR target around rounds 5-7 for fantasy managers, but he’s been hobbled by a leg injury for most of 2020. Back on the field in Week 4, he took 3 catches for 19 yards and a TD. Kirk had 107 targets in 2019 and is the #2 receiver in a prolific Cardinals passing offense. If he hit the waiver wire in your league, give him a chance.
Kenyan Drake — 35 yards and no receptions. So far, Drake hasn’t paid off on his late 1st round/early 2nd round draft slot. However, he’s still a healthy RB, and through week 3 he was in the top 10 in RB yardage. He’s getting nearly 17 touches a game, which is still a great prospect for fantasy production. Like Joe Mixon getting a bit unlucky through the first three weeks before exploding in week 4, fantasy owners should keep starting Kenyan Drake until he either hits or his usage falters. Fingers crossed the opportunities turn into fantasy points.
Cooper Kupp — When adequate DEF meet on the football field, it results in the 17-9 game between the Rams and the Giants that barely topped 500 yards of offense between the two teams combined. In other words, Dak Prescott basically produced more offense than the 22 offensive players on the Rams and Giants. Kupp made the highlight reel for catching a TD in broken coverage, and finished the day with 5 catches for 69 yards. With 23 receptions for nearly 300 yards and 2TDs through his first four games, Kupp is living up to his draft value as the WR 1/2 for many teams.
Josh Allen — In his worst performance of the year, Josh Allen threw for 288 yards, 2 TDs, and punched in a QB sneak for another TD. In most scoring systems, he got 24 points for his worst game of 2020. Considering most drafters took Allen well after round 10, they’re getting great value for their quarterback slot.
Stefon Diggs — Josh Allen’s favorite target is on pace for 104 catches and 1600 yards. Sure, that’s gotta be unsustainable. But for right now, ride the Diggs wave as he’s producing ridiculous results. With 6 catches for 115 yards in week 4, Diggs has helped a lot of teams to victory.
Allen Robinson — Nick Foles looked like, well, the Nick Foles that couldn’t keep the QB job when the St. Louis Rams were purposefully losing before moving to Los Angeles. Foles did, however, find Robinson 7 times for 101 yards and a TD. Whether it be Trubisky or Foles, Robinson has been hot over the past two weeks, with 17 catches on 23 targets, 224 yards, and 2 TDs. Foles seems to love Robinson — with good reason! — and as long as Foles remains the signal caller in Chicago, Robinson should get a priority in DFS lineups and should be a certain start in head-to-head formats.