Did you have a good Week 4? This NFL season is as muddled and murky as any in recent memory, which means fantasy performances have been equally as murky. Players like Devonta Freeman have been fantasy superstars and expected studs like DeMarco Murray have been complaining about not getting the ball enough. As the first quarter of the season has already passed us by, are we all to expect more of the same?
Byes: MIA, NYJ, CAR, MIN
Who to Start:
QB Philip Rivers (SD) vs. PIT MON: What's astonishing to this observer is how Rivers can continue to rack up impressive stats despite the rash of injuries affecting his weapons on the outside. The Steelers secondary is not very good, so despite the short deck, Rivers could be in for another big game on Monday night.
RB Dion Lewis (NE) vs. DAL: This goes against my own better judgment of "avoid Patriot running backs whenever possible because of their coach", but it seems that the Pitt graduate has earned the lions share of the carries. He's facing a poor Cowboys rush defense which although it is getting back key cogs, will still be weak.
WR Larry Fitzgerald (ARZ) vs. DET: His resurgence this year has been incredibly impressive, and because the Lions have not stopped established receivers well throughout the years, Fitz could be in for a huge day at the office.
WR Travis Benjamin (CLE) vs. BAL: If you thought that Benjamin's numbers would decline when the Browns switched back to Josh McCown at QB, you were wrong. He's still put up big numbers despite the switch, and form should hold against a Ravens secondary that has been torn apart by every team it has played this season.
TE Tyler Eifert (CIN) vs. SEA: He's struggled in his last two games, but that shouldn't stop you from playing him even against Seattle, who among all of their defensive prowess do struggle to stop Tight Ends.
DEF New York Giants vs. SF: The supposedly weak Giants defense has actually been pretty stout this season, and their matchup against San Francisco is incredibly favorable. When some are calling for Blaine Gabbert to be the starting QB, defenses start licking their chops.
Who to Sit:
QB Andy Dalton (CIN) vs. SEA: Is his fantasy fast start about the become a thing of the past? If there's any team that could scupper his momentum, it's Seattle. They've been stout the past two weeks, even if they're not quite as good away from Seattle as they are in Seattle.
RB Melvin Gordon (SD) vs. PIT MON: Danny Woodhead has been a more viable SD RB fantasy option than Gordon has through the Chargers first four games this season, and even though the Steelers can be killed through the air, they are fairly strong on the ground.
WR Amari Cooper (OAK) vs. DEN: It is tough to sit him at this pace, but the Broncos secondary has been locking down everyone in sight thus far, and there is no reason to think that won't be the case again on Sunday. Cooper is a risky play.
WR Golden Tate (DET) vs. ARZ: Speaking of another stout defense, the Cardinals defense has been pretty fantastic as well this season. Unlike Calvin Johnson, Tate has been far more inconsistent in his performances, meaning that he too is a risky play.
TE Zach Ertz (PHI) vs. NO: The Eagles offense has been anemic even against teams one would think they'd be able to rebound against. This has dramatically affected the stock of Ertz, who can be a viable fantasy TE but hasn't nearly shown the signs to be one this season. Even though this matchup isn't bad, if you have better options, may as well go with them until Ertz proves himself again.
DEF Dallas vs. NE: This should be fairly obvious but if it's not: Even though the Cowboys get pieces back, they're still injured to heck and the Pats are coming to town.
Three Super Sleepers:
QB Jameis Winston (TB) vs. JAX: He has struggled to open his pro career, to be fair. The Jaguars defense isn't necessarily that bad either. So why is Winston a sleeper? The Jaguars can get gashed by underneath patterns, are injured to absolute heck in the secondary, and do not force turnovers. Winston's stats might not be super impressive, but a solid day is more than likely in the offing.
RB Devonta Freeman (ATL) vs. WSH: He's not really a sleeper anymore, but he's here because at some point he's going to stop scoring every one of the Falcons TD's, right? Right? Bueller?
WR Jeremy Maclin (KC) vs. CHI: Has the Chiefs wideout hex finally been broken? If one looks at Maclin's last two games, quite possibly that is the case. The Bears defense is unmistakably still very poor, so Maclin could rack up more catches and yards on Sunday.
WR Martavis Bryant (PIT) vs. SD MON: He's back! But will he be back in the way most of his fantasy owners would like? With Michael Vick not Big Ben tossing him the magic bean? It's dicey, to say the least.
Good Luck in Week 5!