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Fantasy Football 2017: Week 4 Waiver Wire


Fantasy Football 2017: Week 4 Waiver Wire

Here are the best Week 4 waiver wire pickups for NFL fantasy football.

— Quarterbacks, assuming Trevor Siemian, Andy Dalton and Carson Palmer aren’t available…
Deshaun Watson – Think about this. Watson came within seconds of beating Nick Saban and Bill Belichick coached teams in two of this last starts. Even though Houston fell short against New England, the rookie came up large 301 passing yards and two touchdowns. Next up is a Titans defense allowing the third most fantasy points to quarterbacks this season. For those thinking stash, Watson has another promising start against the Browns in Week 6.

Others:  Jared Goff (Rams) at Cowboys, Blake Bortles (Jaguars) at Jets

Be concerned: Cam Newton lost tight end Greg Olsen in Week 2 and might not have top receiver Kelvin Benjamin at New England in Week 4. The Patriots haven’t been very impressive defensively, but Newton isn’t exactly dominating. With limited weapons, owners should consider other options and view Newton as a low-end QB2.


— Running backs
Wendell Smallwood – The pre-draft sleeper only had seven carries thru Week 2, but went 12 for 71 against the Giants after Darren Sproles suffered knee and arm injuries. Even if LeGarrette Blount handles goal line duties, note that Smallwood played more snaps in Week 3. Either way, he’s the best bet to replace Sproles and that’s not nothing.

Jamaal Charles – This recommendation is about the name, but the production. C.J. Anderson is the clear lead option in Denver. After three games, Charles is carving out a nice role

Branden Oliver – Melvin Gordon owners probably didn’t view any San Diego backup as a clear handcuff. That ended Sunday when Oliver stepped in while Gordon dealt with a knee injury. While the pain doesn’t sound significant, Oliver could be in play for some work and perhaps plenty of it if Gordon sits against the Eagles.

Others: Chris Johnson (Cardinals) vs. 49ers, Jamaal Williams (Packers) vs. Bears


— Wide receivers
Kenny Britt – The free agent addition finally looked like a No.1  option for the Brown with 54 yards and a touchdown on three catches with 10 targets against the Browns. Cleveland’s passing game won’t be a steady source for points, but there could be plenty of throws in the second half of the Week 4 matchup against a desperate Cincinnati team.

Josh Doctson – This recommendation is a combination of Doctson’s impressive 52-yards touchdown Sunday night and the early season struggles for Terrelle Pryor. Even though Doctson has just the one reception this season and limited playing experience on the NFL level, he might be Washington’s most talented outside receiver. The package of size, speed and legitimate hops makes Doctson a strong stash, though probably a tad risky for a Week 4 starts at the Chiefs on Monday night.

Sterling Shepard – We were waiting for the Giants passing attack to join the 2017 season. They did Sunday and Shepard did work (7-133-1) playing alongside Odell Beckham and Brandon Marshall. His weekly numbers might fluctuate with those other receivers and tight end Evan Engram receiving ample targets. Then again, Shepard is arguably the second best receiver of the bunch. They’ll all get a chance to shine against a Tampa Bay secondary that had no luck against Minnesota’s wide outs in Week 3.

Others: Paul Richardson, Robert Woods, Geronimo Allison


— Tight ends
Cameron Brate – The New York Giants haven’t stopped a starting tight end this season. They’ve also allowed a touchdown in all three games. Enter Brate, who found the end zone in Week 3. Don’t force Brate into your lineup considering his limited targets to date, but he’s the type of talent that can take advantage of the situation.

Vernon Davis – Father time certainly lost the battle with this veteran. Filling in for the injured Jordan Reed, Davis looked all kinds of spry in the Week 3 win over Oakland, both as a route-runner and with the ball in his hands. Reed (chest) might play this week. If not, Davis is worthy of a start.

Others: Evan Engram (Giants) vs. Bucs


— Defenses
Streamers: Jaguars at Jets, Bengals at Browns

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Five takeaways from the Redskins' humiliating loss to the Chargers

Five takeaways from the Redskins' humiliating loss to the Chargers

CARSON, CA—Here are five observations from the Redskins' disappointing loss to the Chargers.

If you can’t overcome adversity, this is what happens: The last two weeks the Redskins have faced some tough times. And instead of responding by fighting back against the Cowboys last week and the Chargers today, they have folded. Teams in the NFL are pretty even in terms of talent. Most will go through bad stretches at some point during a given game. It’s how you respond to the challenges when they arise that often makes the difference between winning and losing. The Redskins’ inability to respond left them way in the dust the last two games.

Kirk Cousins isn’t there yet: This was another game where you couldn’t really blame the quarterback for the loss but at the same time he didn’t do enough to pull the team to a win. He made some good throws but two in particular—the one that was tipped and intercepted to set up a Chargers field goal and the overthrow of Vernon Davis on fourth down when the Redskins had a chance to make it a game—were costly. Again, I don’t expect Cousins to put 30 points on the board by himself. But along with the rest of the team, he didn’t do enough in response to adversity.

The defense has fallen apart: This is no longer a fluke, it’s an epidemic. They have allowed 30 points or more in six of their last eight games. Sure, they have been hit with injuries but today they lined up nine Week 1 starters. I’ll bet that compares favorably to many other teams around the NFL. I’m not sure if it needs to be totally rebuilt but it certainly needs another solid draft and a free agent or two.

The Redskins tried to balance the offense: At one point in the third quarter, the Redskins had nearly the same number of running plays as passing plays. That was a good plan but the Redskins just couldn’t sustain anything on offense. They ran just 50 plays and went two for 12 on third down. You just aren’t going to win doing that.

Breeland gets first defensive TD of the year: They could have used it much earlier but Bashaud Breeland got a hold of a pass in the fourth quarter and bolted 96 yards for the Redskins’ first defensive TD of the season. Jay Gruden talked about the need to get big plays, game-changing plays, especially if you can’t convert on third down. If that had come earlier, it would have qualified. As it was, it just made the final score less embarrassing.

RELATED: Redskins fail to be competitive on offense or defense vs. the Chargers

Stay up to date on the Redskins. Rich Tandler covers the team 365 days a year. Like his Facebook page and follow him on Twitter @TandlerNBCS.

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Redskins fail to be competitive on offense or defense vs. the Chargers

Redskins fail to be competitive on offense or defense vs. the Chargers

CARSON, Calif. — The Redskins limped to the finish line in Week 14 against the Chargers, resulting in the team's least inspiring game of the season.

Here are my observations during the Redskins’ 30-13 loss to the Los Angeles Chargers.

—The Chargers had a opening good drive going but Anthony Lanier tipped a third-down pass to stall it in the red zone.

A lot of fans missed the drive as this photo shows.


—It was shades of the Redskins’ loss in Kansas City as the Redskins gave help in the form of major penalties to give a hand to an offense that didn’t really need it. The drive was 10 plays, 92 yards, with a pass interference, facemask, and personal foul moving things along for the home team. It’s 10-0 and the Redskins have run five plays with one first down.

—It’s getting late early for the Redskins. Kirk Cousins overthrew a pass intended for Vernon Davis with two defenders in the vicinity. The safety tipped it and linebacker Kyle Emanuel picked it off and returned it to the Redskins 29. The defense held and the Chargers got a field goal to take a 13-0 lead.

—The Redskins got what they needed with some good plays by Cousins to make up for the bad interception. He found Ryan Grant down the middle for 28 yards and then he threw a nice pass to Niles Paul to convert and fourth and two. Three plays later he bought time and threw to Vernon Davis for 23 yards and a touchdown. The Redskins had life at 13-6. 

— One play after the Redskins made it a one-score game, Rivers aired it out to receiver Tyrell Williams, who had left Josh Norman a few steps behind him. The pass was on the money to complete the 75-yard TD play.

—After Cousins and Davis just missed connections on a fourth-down pass:

—The Redskins make it to halftime trailing by “only” 17. The Chargers have racked up 354 yards of offense in the first half. Six times this year the Redskins have given up fewer than that in an entire game. 

—After the Chargers’ first punt:

—Just before the Chargers made it worse by scoring a TD to go up 30-6:

—The Redskins didn’t come to play today. The defense, which is missing only three Week 1 starters, just couldn’t stop the Chargers offense. And the offense had some chances to make it a shootout type of game but something always went wrong.

—My friend Dale Earnhardt Jr. sums it up well here:

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Stay up to date on the Redskins. Rich Tandler covers the team 365 days a year. Like his Facebook page and follow him on Twitter @Rich_TandlerCSN.