Fitz’s Fantasy Football Week 4 Rankings, Tiers & Start/Sit Advice (2022)
We’re three weeks in. We’ve measured up our opponents, thrown a few jabs. Now it’s time to really start mixing it up.
My weekly tiers column is meant to add a bit of color to my player rankings and perhaps help you with lineup dilemmas. It’s rapid-fire analysis, not the deeper dives you get in The Primer, Freedman’s Favorites and elsewhere.
If you want to dive deeper into fantasy football, be sure to check out our award-winning slate of Fantasy Football Tools as you navigate your season. From our Start/Sit Assistant – which provides your optimal lineup, based on accurate consensus projections – to our Waiver Wire Assistant – that allows you to quickly see which available players will improve your team and by how much – we’ve got you covered this fantasy football season.
Fitz’s Fantasy Football Week 4 Rankings, Tiers & Start/Sit Advice
- Josh Allen (@ BAL)
Josh Allen threw for 400 yards against the Dolphins last week, although that was largely because the Bills ran 92 plays on offense, most of them while trailing. Now, he’s facing a pass-funnel Baltimore defense. Opponents have thrown against the Ravens on a league-high 70.1% of their offensive snaps. The Ravens have given up 366.3 passing yards per game. Even if you discount Tua Tagovailoa‘s 461-yard day against them, the Ravens allowed 297 and 302 passing yards in their other two games. This is a smash spot for the most valuable QB in fantasy.
Jalen Hurts is still the same dynamic runner he was in 2021, and there’s been noticeable improvement in his passing. He’s the complete package now. He’s averaging 28.8 fantasy points per game, and while Jacksonville certainly isn’t a pushover matchup, the expectation is that Hurts has another big game.
Lamar Jackson leads all quarterbacks with 34.7 fantasy points per game. This season has been a perfect storm for Lamar. The Ravens’ pass defense has been terrible, so Lamar is being forced into weekly shootouts. The Ravens’ running game isn’t what it was two seasons ago, so Jackson has become the engine of the Baltimore running game. The Bills would be a tougher matchup if their secondary weren’t in tatters.
After torching the Chiefs for 360 yards and five TDs in Week 1, Patrick Mahomes has had two lackluster outings. He faces a tough matchup against a Buccaneers defense with a loaded defensive backfield, but Mahomes is still the best pure passer in the league.
Joe Burrow has a get-right matchup against a Dolphins defense that has to be gassed after being on the field for 92 plays in 90-degree heat against the Bills offense last Sunday.
Kyler Murray has thrown 107 passes in his last two games, but he’s averaged 5.5 yards per attempt and has thrown just one TD pass over that span. He has a tricky matchup against and underrated Carolina defense, but it’s hard to completely fade Murray and his dual running-passing ability.
Justin Herbert is still dealing with a painful rib cartilage injury and clearly wasn’t himself last week against the Jaguars. He has an appealing matchup against the Texans, but we probably shouldn’t expect a blow-up game with Herbert still ailing and with Chargers left tackle Rashawn Slater out for the season.
Russell Wilson has thrown only two TD passes in this first three games but faces a Las Vegas defense that is allowing 23.3 fantasy points per game to opposing quarterbacks.
Tua Tagovailoa was banged up heading into a Thursday-night matchup against the Bengals, but as good as he’s been, it’s hard to keep him out of QB1 range.
Kirk Cousins is generally a pretty reliable fantasy QB. I do worry about his Week 4 matchup against a Saints defense that is allowing 191.7 passing yards per game and just 6.3 yards per pass attempt.
- Derek Carr (vs. DEN)
- Aaron Rodgers (vs. NE)
- Matthew Stafford (@ SF)
- Tom Brady (vs. KC)
- Trevor Lawrence (@ PHI)
- Jared Goff (vs. SEA)
Derek Carr has been a metronome, reliably cranking out 250-300 yards with a couple of touchdowns every week. He’ll be challenged by a Denver defense that’s giving up 11.6 fantasy points per game to opposing QBs and is yielding 6.1 yards per pass attempt.
Aaron Rodgers might have an exciting new weapon in rookie WR Romeo Doubs, and it helps that he has offensive linemen David Bakhtiari and Elgton Jenkins back from injury. His ceiling might be limited this week, since he might not have to throw too aggressively with the Packers heavily favored against a visiting Patriots team likely to be quarterbacked by backup Brian Hoyer.
Matthew Stafford investors are understandably displeased with his performance thus far. A road matchup against the 49ers won’t be easy, but in three games against San Francisco last year (including a playoff game), Stafford averaged 272.7 passing yards and 2.0 TD passes.
The return of Mike Evans from a one game suspension should help Tom Brady immensely. The Buccaneers were woefully short on pass-catching weaponry in a 14-12 loss to the Packers last week, and they might need to go blow for blow with the Chiefs on Sunday night.
Jared Goff already had seven TD passes, and he gets a juicy matchup against a porous Seahawks defense that’s giving up 8.8 yards per pass attempt.
- Marcus Mariota (vs. CLE)
- Geno Smith (@ DET)
- Carson Wentz (@ DAL)
- Justin Fields (@ NYG)
- Ryan Tannehill (@ IND)
- Matt Ryan (vs. TEN)
- Baker Mayfield (vs. ARI)
- Daniel Jones (vs. CHI)
- Jimmy Garoppolo (vs. LAR)
- Jacoby Brissett (@ ATL)
- Mitch Trubisky (vs. NYJ)
- Davis Mills (vs. LAC)
- Cooper Rush (vs. WAS)
- Andy Dalton (vs. MIN)
- Zach Wilson (@ PIT)
- Brian Hoyer (@ GB)
Call this the streaming tier. Marcus Mariota, and Geno Smith probably have the most upside from this group. Mariota’s passing numbers are pedestrian, but he adds value as a runner. Smith has been throwing aggressively and gets a favorable matchup against the Lions.
Jonathan Taylor‘s weekly fantasy finishes so far in half-PPR: RB2, RB33, RB23. He has a seemingly favorable matchup against a Titans defense that has allowed the fourth-most fantasy points to running backs this year, but Tennessee did manage to hold Taylor to 134 rushing yards and one TD in two meetings last season.
Saquon Barkley has looked fabulous this season. He enters Week 4 as the RB2 in half-PPR fantasy scoring, and he’s capable of finishing as the RB1. Barkley gets a peach of a matchup this week against the Bears,
Human wrecking ball Nick Chubb leads the NFL in carries (62) rushing yardage (341) and TD runs (4). The Browns have run the ball on 54.3% of their offensive snaps.
Derrick Henry is averaging 18 carries a game, and it was nice to see him add 5-58-0 receiving last week. His workload continues to make him an incredibly valuable fantasy asset.
Joe Mixon came into Week 4 averaging 2.8 yards per catch and 5.2 yards per target, and he was still looking for his first touchdown of the season. Those woeful efficiency numbers are due for a rebound. Mixon’s workload is what fantasy managers crave. With 58 carries and 20 targets, he’s averaging 26 opportunities per game.
After scoring 20 touchdowns last season, Ekeler has yet to find the end zone in 2022. He’s averaging just 2.5 yards per carry, although he does have 21 catches already. He gets a favorable matchup vs. the Texans this weekend, but a season-ending injury to left tackle Rashawn Slater won’t help Ekeler’s cause.
- Alvin Kamara (vs. MIN)
- Najee Harris (vs. NYJ)
- Jamaal Williams (vs. SEA)
- Leonard Fournette (vs. KC)
- Aaron Jones (vs. NE)
- Khalil Herbert (@ NYG)
- Javonte Williams (@ LV)
It’s hard to believe, but Alvin Kamara is currently RB56 in fantasy scoring. Maybe a trip to London will inspire him. When Kamara hits the field at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium, he’ll be facing a Vikings defense that is giving up 24.6 fantasy points per game to running backs, and the Saints might be inspired to make Kamara a big part of the game plan since they’ll be without QB Jameis Winson and WR Michael Thomas.
Najee Harris is averaging 58.7 scrimmage yards per game after averaging 98.1 last season. He’s still going to get plenty of carries, but he’s seen a decrease in his route participation this season, which doesn’t bode well.
Leonard Fournette is the RB17 in half-PPR because he hasn’t scored a touchdown yet. But the fantasy points will come in bunches if he keeps getting such a massive workload. He had a 91% snap share in Week 3 and was the only Buccaneers RB to get a touch. Fournette has played 85% of the Bucs’ offensive snaps on the season.
The Packers are big home favorites Sunday against the Patriots. As my colleague Matthew Freedman noted in this week’s installment of Freedman’s Favorites, Jones has played 26 games in which the Packers have been home favorites under head coach Matt LaFleur, and Jones has averaged 101.4 yards and 1.0 touchdowns in those contests on 13.2 carries and 4.6 targets per game.
With David Montgomery out with an ankle injury, the Bears will lean heavily on Khalil Herbert, who had 20-157-2 rushing against the Texans las Sunday and was the RB1 for the week. The Texans’ defense has allowed a league-high 477 rushing yards.
Yes, Melvin Gordon still has a role for the broncos, but it’s just a matter of time before Javonte Williams explodes. He’s had 15 carries in each of his last two games and already has 21 targets and 15 receptions.
- Cordarrelle Patterson (vs. CLE)
- Dameon Pierce (vs. LAC)
- James Conner (@ CAR)
- Dalvin Cook (@ NO)
- James Robinson (@ PHI)
Cordarrelle Patterson is off to another hot start. Through the first three weeks of the 2021 season, C-Patt was the RB10. Through three games this year, he’s the RB5. Patterson is dealing with some sort of knee injury, so check his status before starting him.
Rookie Dameon Pierce had 20-80-1 rushing against the Bears last week and added 2-21-0 as a receiver while getting a 59% snap share. Now he faces a Chargers defensive line that ranks last in the league in yards allowed before contact.
James Conner is clearly the main man in the Arizona backfield, but that hasn’t meant much, as Conner is currently the RB32 in half-PPR. He’s running behind a bed offensive line, and he’s one of the lowest-ranked RBs in terms of yards after contact.
Dalvin Cook dislocated his shoulder last week but is expected to play in London this week. The shoulder issue is a recurring one for Cook. It’s a tricky issue for his fantasy managers, since it’s hard to tell what sort of workload Cook will get.
Robinson has finished as a top-eight fantasy scorer (half-PPR) in each of the first three weeks, and he’s had 45 touches in the last two weeks. He’s become a must-start.
- Breece Hall (@ PIT)
- Miles Sanders (vs. JAC)
- Antonio Gibson (@ DAL)
- Kareem Hunt (@ ATL)
- Josh Jacobs (vs. DEN)
- Jeff Wilson Jr. (vs. LAR)
- AJ Dillon (vs. NE)
- Devin Singletary (@ BAL)
- Clyde Edwards-Helaire (@ TB)
After being out-snapped by incumbent starter Michael Carter in the first two games of the season, Breece Hall out-snapped Carter 40-38 in Week 3. This week, Hall goes up against a soft Pittsburgh run defense that gave up the second-most rushing yards to opposing RBs last season and has allowed the 10th-most this season.
Miles Sanders faces a pass-funnel Jacksonville defense that has faced a league-low 39 rushing attempts by opposing RBs. The Jaguars’ run defense ranks No. 1 in Football Outsiders’ DVOA metric. If Sanders doesn’t have success as a runner, he’s probably not going to bail out fantasy managers with his pass catching, since he has six catches for 13 yards so far this season.
Antonio Gibson has scored a touchdown in each of his last two games, but he’s produced 41 and 40 yards from scrimmage in those two contests. Gibson is averaging 3.1 yards per carry behind an offensive line that ranks 26th in Football Outsiders’ adjusted line yards run-blocking metric.
Josh Jacobs hasn’t scored a touchdown and hasn’t rushed for 70 yards in a game this season. It was encouraging that he drew six targets and had 5-31-0 receiving in Week 3, but he’s mostly been a one-dimensional runner.
With Elijah Mitchell and Tyrion Davis-Price both injured, Jeff Wilson played 73% of the 49ers’ offensive snaps last week and finished with 106 yards from scrimmage. Wilson’s role is attractive, but his matchup is not. He’ll face a Rams defense that’s yielding just 9.9 fantasy points per game to opposing RBs and has not given up a touchdown to a running back yet.
A.J. Dillon is the RB27 in fantasy scoring, but he’s likely to be presented with a run-friendly game script with the Packers 9.5-point home favorites over the Patriots. New England’s run defense is 29th in DVOA.
The Bills tipped their hand with regard to how they feel about their running backs. In Weeks 1 and 2, Devin Singletary had snap shares of 59% and 54%, as the Bills sprinkled in Zach Moss and James Cook in games they won comfortably. Locked in a dogfight with the Dolphins in Week 3, Singletary played 73% of the Bills’ offensive snaps and had 9-78-1 receiving on a career-high 11 targets. The big receiving day was most likely an anomaly, but it’s clear who Buffalo’s No. 1 RB is.
It seems silly to bash Clyde Edwards-Helaire for being efficient. He’s averaging 5.3 yards per carry and 9.4 yards per target, and he’s scored a touchdown on 11.8% of his touches. The problem is that he’s played just 41% of the Chiefs’ offensive snaps and is averaging 11.3 touches per game. If the hyper-efficiency ends, CEH’s production is going to dry up.
- Alexander Mattison (@ NO)
- Rashaad Penny (@ DET)
- Rhamondre Stevenson (@ GB)
- Ezekiel Elliott (vs. WAS)
- Melvin Gordon III (@ LV)
- Tony Pollard (vs. WAS)
- Travis Etienne Jr. (@ PHI)
- Chase Edmonds (@ CIN)
- Cam Akers (@ SF)
- Michael Carter (@ PIT)
- Damien Harris (@ GB)
- J.K. Dobbins (vs. BUF)
- Darrell Henderson Jr. (@ SF)
- Raheem Mostert (@ CIN)
Rashaad Penny has averaged 10.5 touches and 42 yards from scrimmage over the last two weeks, but he has a get-right matchup against a Detroit defense that has allowed more fantasy points to RBs than any other team except the Texans.
Rhamondre Stevenson had a season-high 16 touches in last weekend’s loss to the Ravens, and he out-snapped Damien Harris for a second straight week. The Patriots’ running game ranks No. 1 in Football Outsiders’ DVOA metric, while the Packers’ run defense ranks 32nd in DVOA. The problem is that the Patriots might have trouble scoring touchdowns and sustaining drives if staring QB Mac Jones is out.
Ezekiel Elliott is averaging a respectable 4.5 yards per carry and punched in his first TD run of the season last week. He no longer adds value as a receiver, however. Zeke has three catches for minus-5 yards.
Melvin Gordon scored a touchdown last week and has been giving double-digit carries in all three of his games, but beware: His snap share is at 37%, and his efficiency is falling. Gordon is averaging 3.9 yards per carry and 5.4 yards per target.
Tony Pollard continues to be a model of efficiency, averaging 5.6 yards per carry and 11.5 yards per catch. The problem is that he’s averaging 11.3 touches per game.
Travis Etienne is basically just a passing-down back now, with James Robinson dominating early-down work. That could turn into a big role for Etienne this week if the Jaguars have to play from behind in a road game vs. the undefeated Eagles.
Chase Edmonds scored two touchdowns last week, but he’s been getting out-snapped by Raheem Mostert in recent weeks. He might need to score a touchdown against the Bengals this week in order to make his weekly fantasy quota.
Cam Akers was out-snapped by Darrell Henderson in the first two weeks of the season, but Henderson and Akers both played 24 snaps in Week 3. Henderson had only four carries, while Akers ran 12 times for 61 yards and a touchdown. However, Akers faces an uphill matchup vs. a 49ers defense allowing just 2.9 yards per carry and 16.0 fantasy points per game to opposing RBs.
Yes, Rhamondre Stevenson has out-snapped Damien Harris 86-52 over the last two weeks. But it’s worth noting that Harris has played 74 snaps so far this season, and with his 35 carries and eight targets, the ball has gone to Harris on 58.1% of his offensive snaps. He doesn’t need a big snap count to be useful.
In his first game back from a knee injury, J.K. Dobbins played 27 snaps and had eight carries for 23 yards. It’s hard to see him getting more than 10-12 carries this week, and he’ll face a Bills run defense that is allowing a league-low 47.0 rushing yards per game to opposing RBs.
After getting 18 touches and playing an 82% snap share in Week 1, Darrell Henderson’s usage has been trending in the wrong direction. He split snaps evenly with Cam Akers in Week 3 and had just 4-17-0 rushing.
- Craig Reynolds (vs. SEA)
- Kenneth Gainwell (vs. JAC)
- Trestan Ebner (@ NYG)
- Nyheim Hines (vs. TEN)
- Samaje Perine (vs. MIA)
- Mark Ingram II (vs. MIN)
- Tyler Allgeier (vs. CLE)
- Jerick McKinnon (@ TB)
- J.D. McKissic (@ DAL)
- Ken Walker III (@ DET)
- Rex Burkhead (vs. LAC)
- Justice Hill (vs. BUF)
- Eno Benjamin (@ CAR)
- Jaylen Warren (vs. NYJ)
Say hello to the backup tier. Craig Reynolds could be particularly interesting this week, playing an enhanced role while D’Andre Swift is out. Same thing with the Bears’ Trestan Ebner, who goes from No. 3 on the depth chart to No. 2 with David Montgomery out.
Cooper Kupp had 4-44-0 receiving vs. the Cardinals last week — his lowest reception and yardage totals since late in 2020. Kupp still salvaged his fantasy day with a 20-yard TD run. He draws a Week 4 matchup against a Rams defense he picked apart last season. In three games against the Rams (including a playoff game), Kupp caught 28 of 34 targets for 382 yards and three touchdowns, surpassing the 100-yard mark in all three games.
Stefon Diggs is currently the WR1 in fantasy scoring, just ahead of Kupp, and Diggs gets a dream matchup against a pass-funnel Ravens defense that has given up a league-high 842 receiving yards to wide receivers.
- Ja’Marr Chase (vs. MIA)
- Justin Jefferson (@ NO)
- Davante Adams (vs. DEN)
- Tyreek Hill (@ CIN)
- Michael Pittman Jr. (vs. TEN)
- A.J. Brown (vs. JAC)
Ja’Marr Chase averaged 18.0 yards per catch as a rookie but is only averaging 10.1 yards per carry three weeks into the 2022 season. That has to be a fluke, right? The big plays are coming.
Justin Jefferson was held to three catches and 14 yards last week against Detroit. Now he gets a tricky matchup against the Saints. But are we going to panic over a brief sluggish spell from Jefferson? Of course not.
After racking up 10 catches for 141 yards in Week 1, Davante Adams has caught seven passes for 48 yards in the two games since. At least he’s caught a TD pass in all three of his games so far.
Tyreek Hill is going to take a bite of the Apple in Week 4. Eli Apple, that is. Expect Hill to put up good numbers and take advantage of the times when he gets individual matchups with the Bengals’ exploitable cover man.
It was good to see Michael Pittman get back in the groove in Week 3 after missing Week 2 with a quad injury. He had 8-72-0 against the Chiefs last week and has 17-193-1 in two games. Pittman should fare well again this week in a matchup with the Titans and beatable outside CBs Kristian Fulton and Terrance Mitchell.
A.J. Brown has commanded a massive 33% snap share. Expect him to be peppered with targets again this week vs. a Jacksonville defense that’s been easier to throw on than to run on.
- Deebo Samuel (vs. LAR)
- Mike Evans (vs. KC)
- Jaylen Waddle (@ CIN)
- Tee Higgins (vs. MIA)
- Courtland Sutton (@ LV)
- CeeDee Lamb (vs. WAS)
- Christian Kirk (@ PHI)
- Marquise Brown (@ CAR)
In recent years, the Rams haven’t been considered a good matchup for opposing WRs, but they look like a good matchup for Deebo Samuel this week. The Rams have allowed 56 catches and 667 receiving yards to opposing wide receivers. In three games vs. the Rams last season (including playoffs), Samuel had 13-269-2 receiving and 20-107-2 rushing, along with a 24-yard TD pass.
Mike Evans returns from a one-game suspension he incurred for a fight with the Saints’ Marshon Lattimore. Tom Brady wasn’t able to do much business downfield against the Packers last week, so he’ll be happy to have his big-play receiver back.
Jaylen Waddle scored three touchdowns in the first two weeks of the season, and he’s racked up 273 receiving yards in his last three games. Sharing targets with Tyreek Hill hasn’t been a problem for Waddle so far.
Over the last two weeks, Tee Higgins has commanded 42% of the Bengals’ air yards, producing 11-164-1 over that stretch. He’ll face a Miami defense that has allowed the 12th-most fantasy points to wide receivers.
Courtland Sutton ranks fifth in receiving yards (291) and is tied for 14th in receptions (19), but he’s only the WR18 because he hasn’t scored a touchdown yet. He’ll face a Raiders pass defense that has only allowed two TDs to opposing wide receivers.
There was concern that backup QB Cooper Rush would destroy CeeDee Lamb‘s fantasy value, but that hasn’t been the case. In two games with Rush starting in place of the injured Dak Prescott, Lamb has been targeted 23 times and has 15-162-1, making him the WR13 over that span. He’s a must-start against a Washington defense that has given up the third-most receiving yards to opposing WRs.
Christian Kirk has 18 catches for 267 yards and three touchdowns. He’s averaging 9.0 targets and 89.0 receiving yards per game. Kirk has been lined up in the slot for a majority of his snaps, and when he’s lined up in the slot against the Eagles on Sunday, he’ll avoid the coverage of the Eagles’ two excellent outside cornerbacks, Darius Slay and James Bradberry.
Marquise Brown racked up 14-140-0 on 17 targets last week. Expect his old college teammate Kyler Murray to continue targeting Brown heavily while Cardinals WR DeAndre Hopkins continues to serve a six-game suspension.
- Amari Cooper (@ ATL)
- Mike Williams (@ HOU)
- Drake London (vs. CLE)
- Diontae Johnson (vs. NYJ)
- Rashod Bateman (vs. BUF)
- DK Metcalf (@ DET)
After a quiet 3-17-0 stat line in Week 1, Amari Cooper has posted 101 receiving yards in each of his last two games. Cooper should continue to earn a big target share in a Cleveland with few if any other credible threats at wide receiver. This week, he faces an Atlanta defense that is allowing 195 receiving yards per game to opposing WRs.
It’s been a roller-coaster ride for Mike Williams investors. He caught only 1 of 6 targets last week, but the catch was a 15-yard touchdown. Williams had a 2-10-0 stinker in Week 1, and then went off for 8-113-1 in Week 2. Buckle up for a Week 4 matchup against the Texans.
Physically imposing rookie Drake London has scored a touchdown in back to back games and is making an impact every week. He has been initiated into the must-start club.
Diontae Johnson has seen double-digit targets in all three of Pittsburgh’s games, but he’s averaging a paltry 5.9 yards per target and hasn’t scored a touchdown yet.
As noted in this week’s edition of The Primer, Rashod Bateman ranks third in the NFL in yards per route run (3.11) among WRs with at least 15 targets. Bateman is averaging 5.3 targets and 2.7 catches a game, yet he’s had at least 59 receiving yards in each of his three games. I suspect most Bateman stakeholders would trade some efficiency for more target volume.
Seahawks QB Geno Smith is trying to connect with D.K. Metcalf, but 25 targets have produced only 135 yards and one TD. A potentially high-scoring matchup with the Lions this week is a promising setup for Metcalf.
- DeVonta Smith (vs. JAC)
- Brandin Cooks (vs. LAC)
- Chris Olave (vs. MIN)
- Gabe Davis (@ BAL)
- DJ Moore (vs. ARI)
- Terry McLaurin (@ DAL)
- Garrett Wilson (@ PIT)
- Brandon Aiyuk (vs. LAR)
- Curtis Samuel (@ DAL)
- Tyler Lockett (@ DET)
- Jerry Jeudy (@ LV)
- Elijah Moore (@ PIT)
DeVonta Smith has piled up 15-249-1 in his last two games. He warrants lineup consideration every week regardless of matchup.
Brandin Cooks is averaging 9.7 targets a game, but he’s caught only 44.8% of those targets and is averaging just 5.4 yards per target. With the way Cooks and Davis Mills clicked late last season, it seems only a matter of time before Cooks starts producing the sort of numbers to which we’ve become accustomed.
Chris Olave has been amassing huge amounts of targets and air yards in the last two weeks. He hasn’t scored his first NFL touchdown yet, but he has 14 catches for 227 yards over his last two games. Olave faces a Vikings defense that has allowed the sixth-most receiving yards to WRs, and Olave should see plenty of targets with Michael Thomas out.
The concerning thing about Gabe Davis is that he simply doesn’t draw targets at a high rate. In two games, Davis has played 146 snaps and commanded just 11 targets. We may have to consider the possibility that we won’t get a breakout from Davis after all.
Is Baker Mayfield so bad that he’s going to prevent D.J. Moore from producing his usual 1,100-yard season? It’s too early to give up on Moore, who has a get-right home matchup against the Cardinals.
Terry McLaurin got off to a slow start in Week 3 but finished strong to wind up with 6-102-0. This week, McLaurin faces a Dallas defense that had his number last season. In two games, the Cowboys limited McLaurin to 3-40-0.
Since Jimmy Garoppolo took over at quarterback for the injured Trey Lance, Brandon Aiyuk has out-targeted teammate Deebo Samuel 15-13. Aiyuk faces a Rams defense dealing with multiple injuries in the secondary.
Curtis Samuel is averaging 10.0 targets, 7.3 receptions, 77.3 yards from scrimmage and 0.7 touchdowns a game. The dude can stuff a stat sheet.
Tyler Lockett has a tasty individual matchup this week. He’s been running about two-thirds of his routes from the slot, and Detroit slot corner Mike Hughes has allowed the fourth-most receiving yards from the slot this season (144).
After putting up 4-102-1 in the Broncos’ season opener, Jerry Jeudy has been quiet ever since, with 3-28-0 on nine targets. Perhaps a matchup with the division-rival Raiders will shake him out of his slumber.
Elijah Moore hasn’t hit 50 receiving yards in a game this season and hasn’t scored a touchdown, even though Joe Flacco has averaged 51.7 pass attempts for the Jets over their first three games. Now, Moore has to re-establish chemistry with young QB Zach Wilson.
- JuJu Smith-Schuster (@ TB)
- Josh Reynolds (vs. SEA)
- Treylon Burks (@ IND)
- Jahan Dotson (@ DAL)
- Adam Thielen (@ NO)
- Romeo Doubs (vs. NE)
- Darnell Mooney (@ NYG)
- Allen Lazard (vs. NE)
- Greg Dortch (@ CAR)
- Joshua Palmer (vs. HOU)
- Russell Gage (vs. KC)
JuJu Smith-Schuster leads the Chiefs’ receivers in targets (19), catches (14) and receiving yardage (178), averaging a robust 9.4 yards per target. But he has a tough draft against a Buccaneers pass defense that ranks No. 1 in DVOA.
Treylon Burks has flashed promise but is still just the WR71.
After scoring three touchdowns in his first two games, Commanders rookie Jahan Dotson had a rough Week 3, finishing with 2-10-0 on eight targets. He’s certainly capable of rebounding against Dallas this week, but ‘t’s hard to predict how targets will be divided among the Washington receivers.
After scoring double-digit touchdowns in 2020 and 2021, Adam Thielen has scored one TD in his first three games of 2022. He needs to get into the end zone, because he’s averaging 49.7 receiving yardage per game, and his efficiency numbers aren’t very good.
Romeo Doubs had an 8-73-1 performance against the Buccaneers last week, catching all eight of his targets. Doubs had an 89% snap rate in that game, and it’s clear that he and Allen Robinson are Green Bay’s top two receivers for now.
The good news is that Darnell Mooney is commanding a 25% target share. The bad news is that Bears QB Justin Fields has attempted only 44 passes, which means Mooney has been targeted 11 times. He’s caught just four of them for 27 yards. The Bears have to start throwing more, don’t they?
Allen Lazard has scored 10 touchdowns in his last 12 regular-season games. On the other hand, Lazard has averaged 3.3 catches and 39.5 receiving yards in those games.
Greg Dortch continues to be PPR dynamite. He’s accumulated 20-198-1 on 23 targets and sits as the WR23 in half-PPR.
With Chris Godwin and Julio Jones hurt, and with Mike Evans serving a one-game suspension, Russell Gage dominated targets for the Buccaneers in Week 3, catching 12-87-1 on 13 targets. He’ll cede some targets to the retuning Evans but still figures to be prominently involved Sunday night against the Chiefs.
- Richie James Jr. (vs. CHI)
- Allen Robinson II (@ SF)
- Robert Woods (@ IND)
- Tyler Boyd (vs. MIA)
- Jarvis Landry (vs. MIN)
- Chase Claypool (vs. NYJ)
- Mack Hollins (vs. DEN)
- Zay Jones (@ PHI)
I’ll highlight two players from this tier — one in a good way, one in a bad way.
Richie James is second on the Giants in targets and air yards — second to Sterling Shepard, who’ll miss the rest of the year with a torn ACL. WRs Kadarius Toney (hamstring) and Wan’Dale Robinson (knee) seem unlikely to return this week. James, who’s on a 79-catch pace, figures to see a lot of rookie slot corner Kyler Gordon, who’s given up 3.47 yards per route run into his coverage, according to PFF.
Allen Robinson has played 166 snaps this season and has drawn only 12 targets. He has one fewer target than backup WR Ben Skowronek. It’s very possible that Robinson is, in fact, washed.
- Corey Davis (@ PIT)
- Marquez Valdes-Scantling (@ TB)
- Robbie Anderson (vs. ARI)
- Mecole Hardman (@ TB)
- Jakobi Meyers (@ GB)
- Isaiah McKenzie (@ BAL)
- George Pickens (vs. NYJ)
- Marvin Jones Jr. (@ PHI)
- DeAndre Carter (vs. HOU)
- Devin Duvernay (vs. BUF)
- K.J. Osborn (@ NO)
- Nico Collins (vs. LAC)
There are some intriguing names on this tier, but if you’re starting any of these guys, you’re crossing your fingers and hoping to get lucky.
A majority of rankers have Mark Andrews in the TE1 spot over Travis Kelce this week. I’m leaving Kelce at TE1. He has 17-230-2 so far and remains a threat to go off in any given week. But Andrews is right there with him, producing 22-245-3 so far. These guys are exclamation points at a position populated by question marks.
Kyle Pitts got off to a fast start against the Seahawks last week, but the smash game we’ve been waiting for didn’t quite materialize, and we had to settle for 5-87-0 on eight targets. That smash game is coming, though, and maybe we’ll get it this week against the Browns.
Darren Waller is coming off a sluggish 3-22-0 performance but still sits as the TE6. He’ll face a Denver defense that has given up the eighth-most fantasy points to tight ends.
Dallas Goedert had a season-low 26 receiving yards last week against Washington but scored his first TD of the season. He has a tricky matchup against a Jaguars defense that has yielded only nine receptions to tight ends.
George Kittle is always dangerous, but he made a quiet return from a groin injury last week (4-28-0 on five targets vs. the Broncos) and now faces a Rams defense that’s allowing only 4.1 fantasy points per game to TEs.
- T.J. Hockenson (vs. SEA)
- Zach Ertz (@ CAR)
- David Njoku (@ ATL)
- Pat Freiermuth (vs. NYJ)
- Tyler Higbee (@ SF)
- Dalton Schultz (vs. WAS)
Zach Ertz has seen 11 and 10 targets over the last two weeks and has 14-120-0 receiving over that span. DeAndre Hopkins is still suspended, and A.J. Green is likely to be out with a knee injury, so Ertz should remain a key target for QB Kyler Murray.
Pat Freiermuth drew 10 targets in Week 1, seven in Week 2, four in Week 3. He’s still the TE8 on the season despite the downturn in usage.
Tyler Higbee‘s 24 targets rank second on the Rams and third among all TEs. He’s averaging 57 yards per game and 7.1 yards per target. But Higbee has a rough matchup against a 49ers defense that has so far allowed just five receptions and 23 yards to opposing TEs.
Dalton Schultz is trying to work his way back from a knee injury, but it’s unclear whether he’ll be able to suit up for Dallas in Week 4.
Tyler Conklin has run more routes (134) than any other tight end. He has 18-140-1 on the season and is the TE4 in fantasy scoring. The question is how the QB change from Joe Flacco to Zach Wilson will affect Conklin. It probably doesn’t bode well, but let’s hope it’s not ruinous.
Irv Smith Jr. has a tough matchup against his dad’s old team, the Saints, who have allowed the third-fewest fantasy points to tight ends.
- Evan Engram (@ PHI)
- Hayden Hurst (vs. MIA)
- Robert Tonyan (vs. NE)
- Logan Thomas (@ DAL)
- Cole Kmet (@ NYG)
- Mike Gesicki (@ CIN)
- Albert Okwuegbunam (@ LV)
- Juwan Johnson (vs. MIN)
- Hunter Henry (@ GB)
- Noah Fant (@ DET)
- Cameron Brate (vs. KC)
You might be able to squeeze 6-8 fantasy points from the guys in this tier — maybe more if your guy falls into the end zone – but you’re probably going to get trucked at the TE position if you’re starting one of these guys and your opponent is starting Mark Andrews.