Week 3 made the first two weeks of the season look rather normal. Keenan Allen getting 20 targets and throwing a touchdown is strange, but two Dolphins running backs (including my RB streamer Raheem Mostert) scoring 4 touchdowns apiece is truly bizarre. My favorite moment was all three Chiefs running backs, also my streamers for Week 3, scoring a touchdown. Let’s see who you should be streaming or stashing in week 4.
To keep things simple, we’ll define a streamer as any player you wouldn’t usually start who is a viable option for this week. We’ll define a stash as any player you can probably find on waivers that you should stash for the future, either because they have a favorable match-up coming up or because they could become a future starter.
I’ll also be reporting my streamer record from the season to date above each section to give you an idea of what to expect. Strong finishes mean the top third of starters at the position, moderate means the top half of starters, and bust is everyone else.
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QB Streamer (Week 1: 3 strong, 2 moderate, 4 bust):
Geno Smith (SEA): While the Seahawks quarterback has seemed to struggle so far this season, I believe the Rams and Panthers are actually tougher matchups than they may seem (both are in the toughest 7 QB matchups so far this season). The Giants, on the other hand, have proven a very juicy matchup for opposing passers, making Smith a solid streaming option in Week 4.
CJ Stroud (HOU): The Texans rookie has had a fantastic start to the season, but I’m not yet ready to suggest starting him. He is worth stashing, though, to see how he reacts to the tougher schedule he has coming up.
RB Streamers (Week 2: 9 strong, 2 moderate, 1 bust):
Joshua Kelley (LAC): I must admit I don’t feel great about starting Kelley, but with Austin Ekeler showing no signs of returning and many people dropping him after last game’s bust, Kelley is someone you should pick up and start against the poor Raiders run defense. There is a risk the Chargers give Isaiah Spiller or Elijah Dotson more touches to try to get their ground game going, but Kelley remains the more talented option, and I believe he’s someone you can start in Week 4 if you lack top-end alternatives.
Matt Breida (NYG): This is an even deeper option, but Matt Breida is the Giants starter, and the Seahawks have struggled against the run. That makes him a viable option if you’ve been struck by the running back injury bug.
De’Von Achane (MIA): I shouldn’t need to explain why Achane should be on your roster, but it’s hard to know how he’ll react to the imposing Bills defense. For that reason, I wouldn’t be sticking him in your starting lineup just yet.
Justice Hill (BAL): While Gus Edwards appears to be the starting running back for the Ravens, the pre-season and their post-Dobbins usage suggest Hill may, in fact, be their preferred starter. No Ravens running back can be started against the Browns in Week 4, but Hill is someone to stash in deeper leagues.
Running backs get injured more than any other player in fantasy, with the average Top 36 running back missing two games per season in fantasy. For that reason, your best bet in fantasy is to roster running backs who are an injury away from an every-down role. While I can’t predict who will get injured, I can say who’ll be most effective when given the opportunity. Each week, I’ll be listing my favorite RB backups, only including players you won’t be starting most weeks.
Handcuffs: Tyler Allgeier (ATL), Roschon Johnson (CHI), Zach Charbonnet (SEA), Ezekiel Elliott (NE), Tyjae Spears (TEN), Chuba Hubbard (CAR), Elijah Mitchell (SF), Antonio Gibson (WAS), Samaje Perine (DEN), Tank Bigsby (JAC), Dalvin Cook (NYJ), Zamir White (LV) and Keaontay Ingram (ARI)
WR Streamers (4 strong, 7 moderate, 3 bust):
Joshua Palmer (LAC): With Mike Williams tearing his ACL, Joshua Palmer becomes an every-down player for Justin Herbert in the high-powered Chargers offense. While most people will be going out of their way to pick up Quentin Johnston (and he is a solid stash), it’s Palmer that is the better option for now.
Romeo Doubs (GB): With Christian Watson far from good health and Romeo Doubs finally playing near-full snaps, he becomes a strong streamer against the rebuilding Lions secondary. Jaylen Reed is also an interesting option, but he’s only playing in 11 personnel and that makes him tough to rely upon.
Zay Jones (JAC): The Jaguars receiver remains a strong stash who could easily provide WR3 production once healthy. It’s unclear how the snap shares between the Jacksonville pass catchers will look once Jones returns, but he’s worth holding onto to find out.
TE Streamer (4 strong, 4 bust):
Dalton Kincaid (BUF): It’s hard to feel good about the Bills rookie when Buffalo is in control of a game. But you’d have to think they’ll need to pass a lot to oppose the explosive Dolphins offense. That makes Kincaid and even Dawson Knox viable desperation streamers.
Taysom Hill (NO): There are no great new tight end stashes around at the moment, but one who is at least interesting is Taysom Hill. We know he was more active last year when the Saints were having quarterback issues, and with Derek Carr likely missing a few weeks, Hill is one to stash and see.
K/DST Streamers (4 strong, 2 moderate, 4 bust):
Please note I won’t be listing any kicker or DST stashes, as you should never roster more than one of either of these positions.