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This version of this article is slightly abridged. For the first time in 8 years, I’m traveling during the football season for a family obligation. More of this article will be updated into Saturday evening. Sincerest apologies, and thank you for reading this article. Any feedback please send to firstname.lastname@example.org
Sunday Morning Update:
This slate got turned on it's head with Dorian Thompson-Robinson and Aidan O'Connell both starting. These guys are incredibly cheap at $4,600 and $4,000 and something you're going to want to consider this week. If either of those players has a big game, which they both have upside with Thompson-Robinson's rushing and O'Connell's gunslinger mentality, you're going to want to have them. This should open up availability for some of the more elite players on this slate and puts Justin Jefferson back in play. Jefferson is a strong play this week facing off against a Panthers defense that has struggled against number one receivers.
Know Your Opposition
If you want to finish at the top of the standings in a mid-to-large field GPP, your roster has to stand out from the crowd. Studying a list of projected roster percentages is a helpful first step, but it lacks the context of how the most popular players fit together under the salary cap.
To gain some insight into how the majority of entrants will allocate their cap space, so you can spend yours differently, let’s think about how the public is most likely to attack roster construction at each position.
Slate Overview- Week 4 Thoughts
This is a week where there are a number of players who are horrendously priced, particularly at the wide receiver position. This really is going to drive a significant number of people to similar builds where they use a stars and scrubs approach by paying down for players such as Joshua Palmer, Adam Thielen, Tank Dell, and paying for Keenan Allen who is grossly mispriced at $7,900 along with one or two additional stud players.
At the running back position, it’s really a balanced position this week, as it is essentially a free-for-all once we get past Christian McCaffrey. There are 11 running backs between 5.3k and 6.3k that will draw as of right now a total roster percentage of about 140% between those players and that number is likely to grow as the week goes on. This is going to mean that picking the right running back between that 5.3k and 6.3k price points is going to be critical this week unless you just completely avoid that price point altogether which is difficult to do since there is so much value in that range.
At quarterback, things have normalized compared to last year, as last year the story was to pay up for some of the elite quarterbacks, but this year it is the exact opposite. We haven’t seen those consistently high ceilings from players such as Josh Allen, Lamar Jackson, Justin Fields, Patrick Mahomes II, etc this year which justifies their price points. Instead, we’ve seen breakout games from quarterbacks all over the board as we’ve seen Tua Tagovailoa, Mac Jones, Jordan Love, Daniel Jones, Kirk Cousins, and Russell Wilson finish in the top three quarterbacks over the first two weeks. Only last week did we see some names that would be more typical as Justin Herbert, Lamar Jackson, and Tua Tagovailoa finished as the top three quarterbacks. This does open up an opportunity for those that are brave enough to pay the price for Josh Allen or another expensive quarterback, as people typically just are not currently building their rosters that way.
Key Injuries for Week 4
There are several critical injuries this week and some scenarios that we are still keeping an eye on.
- Mike Williams will miss the rest of the season with a torn ACL. This puts Keenan Allen in a premiere position this week to continue to build on his 18 reception 215 yard performance last week. Allen is significantly underpriced and makes for a great play this week.
- Jimmy Garoppolo is questionable this week. If he is unable to go, this would hurt Davante Adams who otherwise is in a tremendous spot this week after seeing 20 targets from Garoppolo in Week 3.
- Derek Carr will miss this week with a shoulder injury. Jameis Winston will get the start. This should consolidate the receiving options between Chris Olave, Michael Thomas and maybe Alvin Kamara gets in the mix as he returns from suspension.
- Miles Sanders is questionable with a groin injury after not practicing on Friday. If he’s unable to go, Chuba Hubbard at $4,800 could become a cheap punt running back play.
- The Ravens are without Odell Beckham and Rashod Bateman. In GPP’s this could really help Mark Andrews who is at an affordable price this week going up against a Cleveland defense that historically Andrews has done well against as he has 15 or more points in 3 of his last 6 games against the Browns.
Joe Burrow's performance this season has been impacted by a calf injury, which has affected his overall effectiveness. However, he has a favorable matchup ahead against the Tennessee Titans, a team that has been allowing an average of 300 passing yards per game. By all accounts, during practice this week, Burrow looked as close to 100% healthy as he has this season.
Last week, Ja'Marr Chase had a breakout performance, amassing 141 yards on 12 catches, showcasing his potential as a top receiving option for the Bengals. On the flip side, Tee Higgins has struggled, catching only two of his eight targets last week and maintaining a catch rate of less than 50% for the season. The absence of Irv Smith has concentrated the passing volume primarily on Chase, Higgins, and Tyler Boyd. Boyd, while a reliable target, lacks the explosive upside of the other two receivers, averaging just 7.8 yards per catch. Burrow will likely rely on Chase's recent form and attempt to exploit the Titans' vulnerable passing defense in the upcoming game.
This is an unconventional stack but there is some logic behind this one. Kyren Williams is going to be popular on DraftKings this week, but you can get uniqueness by stacking him with Matthew Stafford. The Rams love throwing to their running backs in the red zone as Williams leads the team with seven red zone targets. No other player on this team has more than two.
On the other side of the ball, Pittman has 11 or more targets in every game this season. While he has yet to have the massive 100+ multiple touchdown game, the Rams secondary was burned badly by Ja’Marr Chase last week. With Anthony Richardson suffering a concussion and this being his first game back, the Colts could be cautious running the rookie quarterback and throwing more to Pittman this week. This is a game that could be one of the higher scoring games of the week as three of the teams 6 combined games have gone over 50 points this season.
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