Week 4 is the first bye week on the 2016 NFL schedule, with the Philadelphia Eagles and Green Bay Packers idle. So fantasy football owners face a slightly greater challenge to fill lineups, and streaming options could be worth a wider look.
Here are your quarterback, tight end and team defense streamers for Week 4.
Quarterback: Joe Flacco, Baltimore Ravens vs. Oakland Raiders
Yahoo! Ownership: 29%
The Jacksonville Jaguars allowed six touchdown passes over their first two games, but Flacco failed to take advantage of a favorable matchup in Week 3, going 29-for-40 for 214 yards in Week 3. But with a deep group of pass catchers at his disposal, Flacco has another very favorable matchup coming in Week 4.
The Oakland Raiders held Marcus Mariota in check last Sunday (214 passing yards, zero touchdowns, two interceptions). But in their first two games they allowed 819 passing yards and seven touchdowns through the air to Drew Brees (Week 1) and Matt Ryan (Week 2).
Flacco falls below Brees and Ryan and slightly above Mariota, in terms of supporting cast and talent level, compared to the signal callers Oakland has faced thus far. Numbers in line with that scale on Sunday, let’s say 250 passing yards and two or three touchdowns, makes Flacco a nice streaming option that may fall under the radar.
Others To Consider: Trevor Siemian, Denver Broncos at Tampa Bay Buccaneers; Alex Smith, Kansas City Chiefs at Pittsburgh Steelers
Tight End: Zach Miller, Chicago Bears vs. Detroit Lions
Yahoo! Ownership: 41%
The injury-forced quarterback change from Jay Cutler to Brian Hoyer agreed with Miller in Week 3, as he equaled his target total from the first two games (nine) while finishing with eight catches for 78 yards and two touchdowns.
Cutler may able to return from a thumb injury this week, but Bears’ head coach John Fox has not guaranteed a return to the starting job. Miller has a favorable matchup in Week 4 regardless of who is under center, since the Detroit Lions enter Week 4 having allowed the most touchdowns (five) to opposing tight ends this season. Three touchdowns allowed to the Indianapolis Colts’ tight ends in Week 1 skews things some, but the Lion also allowed 7.5 receptions per game to the position over their first two games before Green Bay’s tight ends totaled just four catches for 37 yards in Week 3.
Chicago’s quarterback situation is a limiting factor, but Miller is trending up heading into a second straight favorable matchup. With few top-notch tight end options, that’s enough to make him a solid streamer for Week 4.
Others To Consider: Vance McDonald, San Francisco 49ers vs. Dallas Cowboys; Jacob Tamme, Atlanta Falcons vs. Carolina Panthers
Team Defense: New York Jets, vs. Seattle Seahawks
Yahoo! Ownership: 42%
The Jets haven’t been a great fantasy defense through three games, with two interceptions and just 12 fantasy points (ESPN scoring). But they do have nine sacks, and their defensive line looks a substantial mismatch for the Seattle Seahawks’ offensive line in Week 4.
The Seahawks score 37 points against San Francisco in Week 3, but they scored just 15 points in their first two games and quarterback Russell Wilson added a sprained MCL in his left knee to a previously sprained right ankle during last Sunday’s game.
Wilson is tentatively expected to practice and play this week, but his trademark mobility will be further diminished behind a bad offensive line. On the off-chance Wilson doesn’t play, and rookie Trevone Boykin starts, the Jets’ defense would be an even better streaming defense for Week 4.
Others To Consider: Dallas Cowboys, at San Francisco 49ers; Washington Redskins, vs. Cleveland Browns