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DRAFT NFL Strategy: Week 4

by Spencer Limbach
Updated On: October 4, 2018, 4:04 pm ET

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You can find more information at Draft.com or quickly join a contest from anywhere after downloading the app!

 

 

Best of luck and happy drafting!

 

 

 

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UNDERRATED PLAYERS

 

These players have a great chance to outperform their DRAFT projection.

 

Odell Beckham Jr. – WR – New York Giants (DRAFT Projection: 15.2)

 

While this 15.2 FP projection is much better than last week’s snubbing of 10.2 FP, Odell Beckham is still underrated. It’s mostly matchup-driven this time around, as ODB will face a Saints’ defense that has allowed the most fantasy points to opposing receivers this season (by a wide margin). DRAFT has Beckham listed as the sixth-best receiver on this slate, but I’m confident enough to boost him as the third-best option of the position. He’s behind Antonio Brown in my book, but the decision becomes very difficult when splitting hairs between Michael Thomas and Odell Beckham in an afternoon matchup against each other. No matter how you slice it, Beckham is getting a firm upgrade on my draft board.

 

 

Tom Brady – QB – New England (DRAFT Projection: 19.9)

 

Brady and the Patriots have suffered two straight down performances, so you better believe they’ll be hungry to bounce-back at home on Sunday. They are facing a Dolphins’ team that currently ranks first overall in opponent passer rating, but that stat is somewhat skewed by their competition: Mariota, Gabbert, Darnold, and Carr aren’t exactly the best representation of steady QB play at the moment … Expect Tom Brady and company to provide the first real test for this Miami pass defense. I’m thinking the Pats will get the best of their divisional foe, and Brady should be treated as a top three QB on this slate. He’ll probably fall in drafts due to a pair of mediocre performances coupled with Miami’s overrated pass defense.

 

 

Jarvis Landry – WR – Cleveland (DRAFT Projection: 12.6)

 

I’m loving Jarvis Landry as a steady WR2 on DRAFT this week, and here’s why: 1) He’s a target monster while racking up 20 receptions on 37 looks through the first three games. 2) Baker Mayfield starting under center could energize Landry and bolster his upside, similar to what we saw in the second-half of last week’s TNF tilt vs the Jets. 3) The matchup looks great against an Oakland defense that has allowed the third-most fantasy points to opposing receivers this season. They also rank 26th in opponent passer rating.

 

 

Kareem Hunt – RB – Kansas City (DRAFT Projection: 12.3)

 

Kareem Hunt is a nice fallback RB2 option who is slightly underrated at this projection level. Sure, the matchup looks tough against a stout Denver front seven that has only allowed 3.3 yards per carry on the season. However, Hunt stands to benefit from game flow (5 point favorites) and the high-scoring nature of his offense. We saw that last week, where Hunt was asked to finish off several drives en route to a pair of rushing touchdowns. In other words, Mahomes and the Chiefs move the ball with such regularity that we can bank on Hunt getting scoring opportunities in the red zone. On a slate that has many top-heavy options at running back (and injuries), Hunt checks in as a solid RB2 to keep an eye on.

 

 

 

OVERRATED PLAYERS

 

These players may not live up to their DRAFT projection.

 

Ben Roethlisberger – QB – Pittsburgh (DRAFT Projection: 20.6)

 

I’ve moved Roethlisberger from QB2 on DRAFT to QB9 in my personal rankings. Sure, Roethlisberger is at home (where he historically performs much better), but the matchup vs Baltimore doesn’t look great. There are much better options when looking at elite QBs – Brees, Brady, Watson, Rodgers, etc. I’m always a firm advocate of waiting on a quarterback in leagues of six or less people. Speaking to that theme, you can let someone else take Roethlisberger at an overrated projection level while waiting to scoop Watson or Brady in the later rounds.

 

 

Ryan Fitzpatrick – QB – Tampa Bay (DRAFT Projection: 20.1)

 

You can basically copy the entire sentiment of Ben Roethlisberger’s write-up and paste it under Ryan Fitzpatrick. DRAFT has Fitz-magic ranked fifth among QBs this week, but I have actually removed him from the top 10 of his position. A road matchup against a tough Bears’ defense seems like the spot for Fitzy to finally regress back to the mean. Sure, he’ll have enough volume to make things happen, but a likely windy day in the Windy City with this bad matchup has me looking elsewhere.

 

 

Robert Woods – WR – LA Rams (DRAFT Projection: 13.2) *Thursday*

 

If you are playing the Thursday slate, I would be apprehensive with Robert Woods as a WR2 despite his generous DRAFT projection. The 13.2 FP expectation has him near the top ten rankings of receivers, which probably shouldn’t be the case. Woods had an impressive breakout performance of 10-104-2 last week vs the Chargers, but it’s so difficult to predict which Rams’ WR will go off. It’s like playing roulette with Cooks, Kupp, and Woods – while that’s assuming Todd Gurley doesn’t completely steal the show. There’s a chance none of them will live up to the billing in a defensive-minded matchup with the Vikings on Thursday Night Football. Give me lower-ranked receivers like Gronkowski, D.Adams, Landry, Smith-Schuster, Sanders, or Hilton before looking towards Robert Woods.

 

 

 

GENERAL STRATEGY

 

Top 10 Overall. As you can see, snagging a top five running back is paramount, as there’s a severe drop-off after that. I’ll be prioritizing my teams accordingly … Michael Thomas and Odell Beckham Jr. are essentially 7a & 7b in this list, but Beckham’s lower projection on DRAFT will likely lead to him being more attainable regardless of your draft spot.

 

  1. Alvin Kamara – RB
  2. Todd Gurley – RB (Thursday)
  3. Melvin Gordon – RB
  4. Ezekiel Elliott – RB
  5. Saquon Barkley – RB
  6. Antonio Brown – WR
  7. Michael Thomas – WR
  8. Odell Beckham Jr. – WR
  9. Julio Jones – WR
  10. James Conner – RB
  11. DeAndre Hopkins – WR

 

 

 

Quarterback Rankings. I already touched on downgrading Roethlisberger and Fitzpatrick while giving Brady a substantial upgrade. QBs like Andy Dalton and Case Keenum deserve consideration as late-round fillers in deeper leagues as well, given they are both looking at fantastic matchups.

 

  1. Patrick Mahomes – KC
  2. Drew Brees – NO
  3. Tom Brady – NE
  4. Deshaun Watson – HOU
  5. Aaron Rodgers – GB
  6. Matt Ryan – ATL
  7. Philip Rivers – LAC
  8. Andy Dalton – CIN
  9. Ben Roethlisberger – PIT
  10. Case Keenum - DEN

 

 

 

ADDITIONAL NOTES

 

Emmanuel Sanders is underrated. I touched on most of the severely underrated players, but Emmanuel Sanders deserves a quick note as well. He has served as Case Keenum’s favorite wide receiver, looking at a potential shootout against a non-imposing Kansas City secondary. Sanders was able to survive a bad outing from his QB last week by posting 15.8 FP (thanks to a TD run), but I’m expecting him to near the 100 yard receiving level yet again. With a projection of only 10.1 FP, Sanders is buried on the pre-draft rankings. He’s my go-to WR2 filler in leagues with six or more people.

 

 

The status of A.J. Green? The biggest injury news early in the week revolves around the status of A.J. Green. We should gain clarity as the days go by, but the Bengals seem optimistic he’ll be a full-go on Sunday. I’m treating the situation that way unless we hear differently.

 

 

More RB injuries: Fournette? Cook? McCoy? Breida? Even if these guys play, will their respective workloads be reduced? These are the situations to monitor as the week progresses. I’m not optimistic on the fantasy value of McCoy or Breida regardless of their health – for what it’s worth.

 

 

 

UPDATES

 

Updated for injuries, weather, etc will be posted here throughout the week – highlighting the DRAFT consequences of each situation.

 

Leonard Fournette is expected to play. We still aren't sure what his workload will look like while coming off a hamstring injury. I'll go ahead and look towards him as RB12 as the last player of his position in six person leagues - or viable in larger drafts. There's some value with Fournette if DRAFT keeps him buried with a 0.0 FP projection. Note posted Thu @ 3:45pm ET.



Spencer Limbach
Spencer Limbach is a multi-sport daily fantasy specialist for Rotoworld. He can be found on twitter @Spencer_JL.