Starts of the Week: Week 4

Once the season begins, the most difficult parts of any fantasy manager’s week are the start/sit decisions. These lineup choices can make or break a week, but unfortunately, not everyone has time to sit down and read lengthy fantasy advice articles on every player. That's why I'll do the work for you, and put a list of several players at each position that I like and should have a strong performance for that given week. But I'm not going to just choose the obvious studs each week. I'll go over the guys that are in the flex-worthy range.


Start of the Week:

Tom Brady (TB) 68 passing yards. That’s how many Tom Brady needs to be able to break the all-time passing yards record in Foxborough. Coming off of a humiliating loss to the Los Angeles Rams, Brady was already going to be playing with a chip on his shoulder. Add in the fact that he’s facing off against the team that didn’t want him anymore when he knew he still had more to give? Brady might throw for 10 touchdowns in this game and I’m only kind of kidding. Even though Bill Belichick knows Tom and his tendencies better than any other defensive coach in the league, Brady’s receiving weapons are going to be too much for the Patriots to handle. Start him with confidence this week as a mid-range QB1.

Stream of the Week:

Taylor Heinicke (WAS) He had a tough matchup in front of him last week against the Bills secondary and he did struggle as a passer. He had just a 58.3% completion rate, he only threw for 212 yards, and he had two interceptions to go with his two touchdowns. However, he did show off his mobility and was able to find the end zone as a runner which helped fantasy managers that played him in a tough matchup. This week against Atlanta, Heinicke should have an easier time out there, but he’s still not quite on the 1QB streaming radar. He’ll be a fine option as a QB2 in Superflex formats, but there are better options available in your traditional leagues.

Running Backs

Start of the Week:

Jonathan Taylor (IND) The Colts running back has looked excellent this season, but the box score isn’t showing what we want to see; fantasy points. Things reached a new low last week when Nyheim Hines sniped the goal line TD. Things should turn around, though, and that should start this week against a Dolphins defense that has been very generous to Peyton Barber, Damien Harris, and the Bills’ backs. Regardless of matchup, though, you should still be trotting Taylor out every week. The TDs will come, and the touches will remain most weeks. Keep the faith.

Co-start of the Week:

David Montgomery (CHI) This Bears offense was an absolute mess last week and David Montgomery certainly didn’t help many fantasy managers to a victory. With the Bears’ offense struggling to even pick up first downs, Montgomery was barely utilized and struggled against a solid Browns defensive front. This matchup screams that you should be starting Montgomery in your fantasy lineups, but it’s very difficult to have faith in Matt Nagy and what he’s doing with this Bears offense this season.

Fade of the Week:

Damien Harris (NE) The Patriots got buried early on last week and had to turn to their passing game, which left Damien Harris on the sidelines. Harris only saw six total carries in week three and then was replaced by James White and eventually Brandon Bolden. The Patriots are going to attempt to get their ground game working in week four to keep Brady off the field as much as they can, but they’re playing the wrong defense for that. The Bucs are allowing just 63.7 rushing yards per game so far this season, which is going to make life difficult on Harris even if he does end up getting more carries than he did last week. If you can afford to, I recommend sitting Harris this week in favor of someone with more upside. Otherwise, Harris can be viewed as a high-end/mid-range RB3 just simply based on the lack of proven options at the position.

Wide Receivers

Start of the Week:

Terry McLaurin (WAS) Despite two lean weeks already this season, F1 remains a must-start. He’s clearly the top receiving option in Washington, and he’s getting good yardage most weeks. While the Falcons provide a juicy matchup, there are not many weeks where McLaurin isn’t a guy you should feel confident starting.

Stream of the Week:

Christian Kirk (ARI) I’ve no idea why more people aren’t talking about this guy. He’s still available in a heap of leagues! AJ Green and Rondale Moore seem to have depressed the Kirk excitement, but he’s still the fantasy WR2 in Arizona, and this is an offense you want pieces of!

Fade of the Week:

Antonio Brown (TB) AB can go off at any time so I’m wary saying this, but I really dislike the matchup against the Patriots, I dislike the week off and I dislike the number of other options in this offense, as Brown runs only a fraction of the routes most fantasy starters do. I’m sitting him unless I desperately need his undoubted upside.

Tight Ends

Start of the Week:

Mike Gesicki (MIA) I can’t believe I’m saying this after an awful week one, but Mike Gesicki is running so many routes and getting so much attention from Jacoby Brissett, he’s a starter while Tua Tagovailoa is out. He’s a low-end guy, but in a position where people are getting excited about Dalton Schultz, Gesicki is a legit option.

Fade of the Week:

Jonnu Smith (NE) I’ve been saying this for weeks, and I’ll say it again. Hunter Henry is the pass-catching tight end to own in New England. While it’s possible the role shifts back towards Jonnu Smith, for now, the former Titan simply can’t be started.

Week 4 Stashes

'Pick up & bench, if you have an available roster spot'

Jeff Wilson (RB - SF) The 49ers backfield is clearly a mess. It’s very possible when Jeff Wilson comes back in November, he’ll be the starter. If you have the bench space or ideally an IR spot, he’s very much worth stashing.

Evan Engram (TE - NYG) I don’t have a lot of faith in Evan Engram these days, but he has been an effective fantasy option in the past, and tight end is a very tricky position where many of you may be quite desperate. Just stash him for a couple of weeks and see what happens.