Fantasy Football: 10 waiver wire targets for Week 4


Fantasy Football: 10 waiver wire targets for Week 4

Why are all the quarterbacks getting hurt?

That's a question we've heard several times over the last 8-10 days and to be honest: we don't have an answer. It seems like an epidemic with Ben Roethlisberg, Drew Brees and Tony Romo - all Top 10 QBs - sidelined. Mix in Jay Cutler's injury and the inefectiveness of some top QB options like Andrew Luck, Sam Bradford and Teddy Bridgewter and the quarterback position is an absolute mess.

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That's why we have five QBs to target on the waiver wire heading into Week 4.

Remember: This is also the first week teams are on a bye.

1. Karlos Williams, RB, BUF

Williams has a touchdown and double-digit fantasy points in every game as a pro. What's not to like? The rookie certainly looks like a steal for the Bills as a fifth-round pick and he could be a steal for your fantasy team, as well. LeSean McCoy is clearly not healthy and there's talk of the Bills shutting him down for at least one week to get his hamstring healed. If that happens in Week 4, Williams suddenly becomes a borderline Top 10 running back with a great matchup against the Giants. Either way, he's absolutely worth owning in just about any format for his upside and situation. (Tony Andracki)

2. Tyrod Taylor, QB, BUF

How this guy is owned in only 44 percent of ESPN leagues is beyond me. I don't get it. He's currently the fifth-ranked fantasy QB, putting up back-to-back 24+ point games. Everybody knew he could run and now he's showing he can pass, too, with seven tuddies through the air in three games. He's not necessarily a must-start in every league and every format each week, but he's absolutely worth owning as at least a backup or a matchup play, especially with all the QBs out injured. (Andracki)

3. Joe Flacco, QB, BAL

Flacco has never been a top tier fantasy quarterback, but there's no reason why he should currently be sitting on the waiver wire in your league, especially with a plethora of injuries to starting quarterbacks and bye weeks upon us. Flacco has put together consecutive 20-point games and draws a brutal Steelers defense in Week 4. He's a must-start in Week 4. (Scott Krinch)

4. Andy Dalton, QB, CIN

I can't believe I'm hopping on the Dalton train but I am. There are a lot of injured quarterbacks out there and Dalton may be the best quarterback available on waivers. He's on fire to start the season, recording multi-TD games in all three starts so far. He's got his dominant receiver in AJ Green going and Marvin Jones, Tyler Eifert and Gio Bernard are guys that have benefited from Dalton's success. While he may not go for almost 400 yards every week like he did last week he should be a quality QB2 option for you for the rest of the year. (John "The Professor" Paschall)

5. Rishard Matthews, WR, MIA

Sure, I may not have added him in a lot of my leagues last week but at least I told YOU to do that. Matthews already leads the Dolphins in touchdowns with three while guys like Jarvis Landry, Lamar Miller and Jordan Cameron have zero. He's been the one surprising bright spot in an underwhelming Dolphins offense so far. For whatever reason, Ryan Tannehill looks to Matthews in the red zone and though he's second on the team in targets to Landry, he averages 16.4 YPC compared to Landry's 9.6. If you have a banged up receiver group, Matthews is a great pickup. (Paschall)

6. Derek Carr, QB, OAK

Here's another guy who absolutely needs to be owned, at least as a bye week fill-in or injury replacement. Carr has two straight games of multiple TDs, 300+ yards and 20+ fantasy points. Now he draws a great matchup against the Bears in Week 4. Keep in mind, you won't want to start him Week 5 against the awesome Broncos pass defense and the Raiders are on a bye in Week 6, so that is two weeks in a row where he can't help you. (Andracki)

[MORE - Fantasy Football: 12 waiver wire targets for Week 3]

7. Michael Vick, QB, PIT

OK, so his trial run didn't go so well on Sunday when Ben Roethlisberger suffered a nasty-looking injury in the third quarter. Vick entered the game, went 5-6 for 38 yards and fumbled once. Now he's got a short week to get ready for the 0-3 Ravens on Thursday, which doesn't make him a stellar fantasy play in Week 4. But look at the weapons Vick, 35, has around him. Le'Veon Bell is back, Antonio Brown hasn't slowed down one bit, Martavis Bryant will return from his suspension and the Steelers defense has been atrocious, giving the Pitt offense more time on the field. Vick has to stay out of his own way and let his weapons do what they do and he's going to return borderline-QB1 value the next four-to-six weeks with Big Ben out. Pick him up now to start him Week 5 on Monday night against the Chargers. (Mark Strotman)

8. Ty Montgomery, WR, GB

It's almost unfair how Ted Thompson finds wide receivers in the second and third rounds of drafts. He appears to have done it again with the addition of Montgomery, who in the last two games has caught all six of his targets for 51 yards and a score. Not huge numbers, and likely not fantasy-starting numbers, but Davante Adams re-injured his ankle early in Monday night's win over the Chiefs and Eddie Lacy is still banged up. With the way Aaron Rodgers is playing, it's worth owning as many Packers wide receivers as you can. Montgomery is locked in as the 4th WR on the depth chart, though that could change if Adams misses time. And if he does, Montgomery would be a sneaky WR3 play against an atrocious 49ers defense. To note, Montgomery has also fared well as a kick returner, ranking third in the NFL with a 31.5-yard average. He could break one soon and tally your squad some extra points. (Strotman)

9. Lance Dunbar, RB, DAL

No, he's not going to be stealing carries from Joseph Randle anytime soon, considering he has two carries this season, but if you're in a PPR league Dunbar needs to be on your roster. The fourth year running back out of North Texas hasn't found the end zone yet. However, he has registered 21 catches for 215 yards through three games, making him a Top 12 fantasy running back in 2015. He doesn't need to be a high priority claim on the wire this week, but if he passes through then go get him right away. (Krinch)

10. Thomas Rawls, RB, SEA 

All Rawls is right now is a handcuff to Marshawn Lynch, but a darn good one at that. When Lynch left Sunday's game with a hamstring injury, all the rookie did was carry the ball 16 times for 104 yards, showing that same type of violent running that has made Lynch one of the best running backs in the league. Rawls has surpassed Fred Jackson on the depth chart, and with Lynch set to undergo an MRI, he's somebody you need to keep an eye on if he's available in your fantasy league. (Krinch)

The amount of money you'll need to get into Bears-Patriots will make your head hurt

The amount of money you'll need to get into Bears-Patriots will make your head hurt

It costs a lot of money to see the GOAT, apparently. 

According to TickPick, a secondary-market ticket site, the get-in price for Sunday's Bears-Patriots matchup is currently sitting at a nice, plump $356. 

That price is, according to this article in the Chicago Sun-Times, more expensive than a ticket to No. 3 Clemson vs. No. 16 North Carolina State ($161) and No. 5 LSU vs. No. 22 Mississippi State (39$??) combined. It's also over 100 percent (116, to be precise) higher than the Bears' following game against the New York Jets. 

This is on top of what is, according to CNBC, already the most expensive gameday experience in the NFL. Soldier's average beer costs $9.50, coming in as the 2nd-most expensive cup of Bud Light Foam, behind only San Fransisco. 

Honestly though, it's not even that cold yet. Who needs heat/electricity when you can have nosebleed seats and *one* beer instead! 

Putting Bill Belichick’s complimentary comments about the Bears in context


Putting Bill Belichick’s complimentary comments about the Bears in context

Bill Belichick had plenty of good things to say about Matt Nagy and the 2018 Bears during a conference call with reporters on Wednesday. Some of the highlights:


On the Bears’ season as a whole:


“The Bears have lost two games, one on a game when they were in control of the game and another one they lost in overtime. This really looks like a 5-0 team to me, if you change one or two plays. You can say that about a lot of teams, but that’s the league we’re in.”


On Mitch Trubisky:


“I think he’s done a good job of getting ball to the players that are open or in space and letting them be playmakers. He has a lot of them. That’s the quarterback’s job is to deliver the ball to the playmakers and let them go. I think he’s done a good job of that. He’s a tough kid, which I respect. That’s what we would ask our quarterbacks to do, to make plays to help our team win, to get the ball to the players that are open and in space. It’s not about stats. It’s about doing what you need to do to win.”


On Tarik Cohen’s usage:


“He plays about a little bit less than 50 percent of the time and he’s in a lot of different places, he’s hard to find. He’s a dynamic player that can run, catch, really threaten every yard of the field from sideline to sideline, up the middle, deep. You can throw it to him, you can hand it to him and he’s elusive with the ball and he’s elusive to be able to get open so the quarterback can get him the ball. Those are great skills to have. Any one of those is good and he’s got several of them.


“He’s very hard to tackle. But they do a great job mixing him, not just putting him in the game but who he’s in the game with, what the combinations are and then where they locate him and so forth. There are a lot of multiples. It’s hard. Coach Nagy does a good job with that and he’s a special player that you gotta know where he is at all times.”


On Trubisky’s 54-yard bomb to Taylor Gabriel on Sunday:


“That’s about as good a throw and catch as I’ve seen all year. The execution on that was like 99 out of 100. It was a great, great throw, great route, great catch. There was like a few inches to get the ball in there 50 yards downfield and that’s where it was.”


On Akiem Hicks’ impact, who played for the Patriots in 2015:


“He’s hard to block. It doesn’t make any difference what the play is, you can run to him and he’s hard to block. You can run away from him, and he makes tackles for loss on the back side. He’s quick and can get around those blocks when there’s more space back there because everybody is going to the front side. He can power rush. He can rush the edges with his quickness. He’s a very, very disruptive player. He’s hard to block on everything.


“I appreciate all of the plays he makes. He makes plays on all three downs, against all types of plays, whether it’s reading screen passes or power rushing the pocket to help the ends, to help (Leonard) Floyd and Mack and (Aaron) Lynch rush on the edge. He’s a powerful, disruptive guy. (Eddie) Goldman has done a good job of that. (Bilal) Nichols has done a good job of that too. They have some really powerful guys inside that are hard to block, and they change the line of scrimmage in the running game and the passing game. It really creates a problem, frees up the linebackers in the running game and helps the ends because the quarterback can’t step up in the pocket in the passing game.”


On Matt Nagy:


“Obviously he's done a great job, as has Ryan with building the team. They have a lot of good players. They have a really experienced staff and they do a great job in all three areas of the game. They're good in the kicking game, they're good on defense they're good on offense. They have highly-skilled players in all three areas.


“It's a well-balanced football team that does a lot of things well. Run the ball. Stop the run. Throw the ball. Rush the passer. Intercept passes. Return kicks. Cover kicks. Cover punts. They're at the top of the league in all those categories. Turnovers. Points off turnovers. It doesn't really matter what area you want to talk about, they're pretty good at all of them. That's why they're a good football team.


“Coach Nagy and his staff certainly deserve a lot of credit. It's not a one-man band. They're all doing a good job. It's a good football team. I'm sure there will be a lot of energy in the stadium this week. It will be a great test for us to go into Chicago and be competitive against them.”


While listening to Belichick rave about the Bears, this missive from former Patriots general manager Michael Lombardi stands out:


“Whenever Belichick tells the media on Mondays or Tuesdays that he has already moved on to the next game, trust me, he’s not lying. I worked with Bill for five years in Cleveland, and then during the 2014 and 2015 seasons in New England. Belichick treats every game like a Super Bowl; no detail is too small, no possible scenario or situation goes overlooked. I have heard Belichick break down a bumbling Jaguars team as if it was the reigning two-time Super Bowl winner and treat Blake Bortles like he’s the second coming of Aaron Rodgers. Belichick does it with tape to back up his claims, only showing his team the opponent’s greatest strengths. (With Bortles, I swear, he must have used George Lucas to doctor the video.) No Patriots opponent is underestimated or taken lightly — EVER.”


One of the myriad things that make Belichick the best coach in the NFL — and maybe the best coach in NFL history — is how he never takes an opponent lightly, and then how he’s so successful at scheming against what an opponent does best.


The Bears are undoubtedly better in 2018 than they were in the John Fox era, or when these two teams last met in 2014 (when New England waxed a moribund Marc Trestman side, 51-23). And a lot of Belichick’s points are valid – that throw Trubisky made to Gabriel was outstanding, for example.


But Belichick talks this way about every team he faces. And that, again, is part of what makes him the best at what he does.