Week 4 is about to kick off, and the Bengals will hopefully be getting their first win of the season. Hopefully your fantasy team isn’t also looking for that elusive first win as well.
Last week was a weird one for the NFL, but we also saw plenty of fantasy studs struggle, and irrelevant players burst onto the scene. That makes it hard to decide when you should sit someone who has a disappointing outing in favor of someone who is newly doing well.
Here are the players you should be starting and sitting this week.
A.J. Green (Bengals WR): Well it finally happened. Green exploded onto the scene last week with 10 catches 11 yards and a touchdown. The fact that Tyler Eifert is also probably going to be out for the Bengals’ next game against the Browns means he will once again receive most of Andy Dalton’s targets, and you shouldn’t be surprised to see him with another huge game.
Jay Ajayi (Dolphins RB): Ajayi struggled last week against the Jets, but this week against the Saints he should have fairly smooth sailing. The Saints have allowed running backs to reach a 4.6 yards per carry average, and the Dolphins may lean more heavily on their star back after a disappointing loss.
Leonard Fournette (Jaguars RB): Fournette may not have gotten you a huge game against the Ravens, but he has scored a touchdown in each game so far this season, and the Jets have allowed four rushing touchdowns this season. Might as well just bet on Fournette reaching the endzone.
Stefon Diggs (Vikings WR): It looked like it could be a rough stretch for Diggs when Bradford was out, but Case Keenum finally found out good things happen when Diggs gets the ball. The Lions have been fairly soft against the pass this year, and Diggs should get you some pretty nice production.
Trevor Siemian (Denver QB): Last week I said don’t play Siemian because of the matchup, but this week he plays the Raiders defense. He should be a nice plug and play if you need a quarterback.
Good but not great matchups
Wendell Smallwood (Eagles RB): Now that Darren Sproles is out for the season Smallwood is expected to have a bigger role. The only problem is it seems this committee could get crowded very quickly. LeGarrette Blount and Corey Clement both scored touchdowns last week, meaning Smallwood may not be getting redzone looks. He is still a nice option in PPR formats.
Jordy Nelson (Packers WR): This is one of those situations where the matchup isn’t bad, but the timing is. Nelson fought a quad injury all week before playing the Bengals, and now he has a quick turnaround for a Thursday night matchup with the Bears. You can keep him in your lineup, but don’t be surprised at a modest output to start the week.
Golden Tate (Lions WR): The Vikings have been shutting down opposing teams’ top targets all season long, and it seems that Tate may be next in line. I always hate putting Lions receivers in here, because at the very least they could see some garbage time points. You shouldn’t have to rely on that though.
Mike Gillislee (Patriots RB): Gillislee started off the season with three rushing touchdowns and it looked like he pulled away as the back to own for New England. Last week though is the illustration of why he is hard to rely upon week in and week out. If he doesn’t get a touchdown you are looking at a rough score. The Panthers have only allowed one rushing touchdown this season.
Just sit them
Marshawn Lynch (Raiders RB): Lynch is one of America’s greatest national treasures. Last week he and the Raiders put up a big old stinker for fantasy owners, and with the Raiders going into Denver it is hard to imagine that changing very much this week. The only good news with Lynch is he is still getting the most carries among the backfield, though the rest are creeping up on him.
T.Y. Hilton (Colts WR): Hilton produced last week mostly due to a few bad mistakes by the Browns defense. A few big plays led to most of his points. Those will be harder to come by when the Colts head into Seattle for a Sunday Night Football game against the Seahawks. If you sat Hilton last week don’t chase the points you missed. Keep him on the bench.