Josh Jordan

Fantasy football under-the-radar plays — Week 4

Look for Allen Robinson to have his best game of the season against the Bucs. Photo via: Chicago Bears/Facebook

We're closing in on Week 4 and I have more sleeper plays for you. Let’s take a peek at how I did last week, and then look ahead to this week’s slate of games. My criteria for a good game is around 100 total yards and/or a TD, and this is for PPR scoring. Of course, the bar is a little lower for TEs.  

RB

Jordan Howard (CHI): Right, and he finally scored.

James Conner (PIT): Right, almost 100 total yards and 5 catches.

Latavius Murray (MIN): Wrong, game got out of control fast in an upset win for Buffalo.

Matt Breida (SF): Right, over 100 total yards and 3 catches.

WR

Keelan Cole (JAX): Wrong, ugly game all around.

Chris Godwin and DeSean Jackson (TB): Split, DeSean not so much, but Godwin was great again.

Will Fuller (HOU): Really Right, damn he's looking good.

Nelson Agholor (PHI):  Wrong, only 5 targets was disappointing.

TE

Eric Ebron (IND): Wrong, but he did drop 2 TDs.

Jesse James (PIT): Wrong, they went with Vance McDonald out of nowhere and he had a huge game.

George Kittle (SF): Right, 5 catches for almost 80 yards is great for a TE not named Gronk, Ertz, or Kelce.

OJ Howard (TB): Right, 72 yards and 6 catches.

QB

Jimmy Garoppolo (SF): Right, he played well and had multiple scores before the injury.

Matt Ryan (ATL): Right Wow, he was amazing again.

 

Now that's what I'm talking about. 9-6 in Week 3 with some HUGE performances from Matt Ryan and Will Fuller. I'll try and do it again this week.

 

Week 4

RB

Chris Carson (SEA): Cardinals have already given up 6 TDs to the RB position and average allowing almost 37 FPTS/G to RBs. The Seahawks should be able to control this game as they face rookie QB Josh Rosen in his first career start in the NFL.

Gio Bernard (CIN): Bernard looks to have another great opportunity if Joe Mixon is out another week with a knee injury. Atlanta is giving up the 3rd most points to RBs at just under 35FPTS/G. Get Gio in your lineup before Mixon returns to the starting role. If Mixon is back this week and it doesn’t appear his touches will be limited, start him with confidence.

Jordan Howard (CHI): I placed him in this article last week and he came through. Don’t be afraid to start him again against the Bucs, as they’re giving up over 31 FPTS/G to running backs.

WR

Sterling Sheppard (NYG): The Saints are giving up the most points to WRs this year and it’s not even that close. How about over 62FPTS/G to WRs? Is that good? We all got a good look at what Calvin Ridley did to them last week, and with Evan Engram out, I like Sterling Sheppard to have another big game.

Allen Robinson (CHI): Robinson has a great matchup against the Bucs who are giving up almost 49FPTS/G to WRs. Robinson is yet to have a big game with his new team, and I think this is the week he breaks out. So far, his best performance was in Week 2 against the Seahawks where he was able to catch 10 balls for 83 yards. I think he gets in the end zone this week.

Emmanuel Sanders (DEN): Sanders is coming off a disappointing game, but that shouldn’t keep you from rolling with him this week. The Chiefs are Top 7 matchup against WRs and Denver should be playing from behind. Fire him up.

Will Fuller (HOU): I was all over Fuller last week making him my Start of the Week and he came though big time. He had over 100 yards receiving with a TD and almost had two scores. I’m to the point where I would start him every week until he gives you a reason not to.

Mike Williams (LAC): The 49ers are giving up over 42FPTS/G to receivers and Richard Sherman is out. Williams has over 80 receiving yards in 2 of his first 3 games this year, so he’s coming on for sure. There is some downside if the Chargers get a big lead and don’t have to throw much in the second half, but Keenan Allen missed practice on Wednesday and might be limited this week.

TE

Eric Ebron (IND): His performance last week was not what you hope for, but he has a great matchup against the Texans this week, and they always have trouble defending TEs. Give him another shot.

Trey Burton (CHI): He hasn’t been great this year, but his best game was last week, so maybe he’s starting to get things going. The Bucs are awful against TEs, just look at what Vance McDonald did to them on Monday Night Football (112-yards, TD). Tampa is giving up over 21FPTS/G to the TE position this year which is the best possible matchup.

Austin Hooper (ATL): I thought he might come through last week, but Calvin Ridley got all the fantasy goodness. The Bengals give up over 19FPTS/G to the position, so he’s worth a shot if you’re weak at the position.

QB

Andy Dalton (CIN): Dalton has a great matchup this week and has thrown for multiple TDs in every game this season. Keep an eye on A.J. Green’s status this week. He suffered a groin injury on Sunday, but plans to play against the Falcons this week.

Matt Ryan (ATL): My radio partner Jerry Bo and I talk about this all the time. If you like a QB in a certain matchup, you should probably like the opposing QB to put points up as well. Ryan has been on fire, so keep using him.

That’s all I have for this week. For more fantasy info, make sure you check out my show Moneyline on ESPN 97.5 every Sunday from 10-noon. Jerry Bo and I will get you ready for kickoff and answer any questions you may have. Also, follow us on Twitter. Good luck in Week 4!

@jordanpfx

@JerryBoKnowz

@Moneyline975

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Houston is back in the win column

McCullers Jr. spins a gem as Astros get a much-needed win over Giants

Photo by Tim Bradbury/Getty Images

After getting swept by the A's in Oakland to end a road trip with a five-game losing streak, the Astros returned to Houston to try and get back on track. To do so, they'd need a win against the Giants on Monday night. Here is a quick recap of the series opener:

Final Score: Astros 6, Giants 4.

Record: 7-9, second in the AL West.

Winning pitcher: Lance McCullers Jr. (2-1, 6.10 ERA).

Losing pitcher: Logan Webb (1-1, 2.81 ERA).

Houston builds up an early lead

The early goings of Monday's game went very similar to the last time Lance McCullers Jr. took the mound. He would have a terrific first three innings while his offense gave him an early lead. The first run came in the bottom of the second, with Yuli Gurriel reaching base on a one-out double, moving to third on a wild pitch, then scoring on an RBI-single by Carlos Correa.

Correa would take part in a four-run inning in the third, as Houston would score two on a two-RBI ground-rule double by Michael Brantley, another on an error, then Correa's second RBI of the night, a groundout to bring in a run and make it 5-0. Unlike the last start in Arizona, where the roof opened and McCullers Jr. fell apart in the fourth, he was able to make quick work of his opponent for a 1-2-3 frame. As he kept recording scoreless innings, Martin Maldonado added another run to the lead with a one-out solo home run in the bottom of the sixth, making it 6-0.

McCullers Jr. takes a no-hitter into the seventh

While the Astros were building their lead, McCullers Jr. was spinning a gem on the mound. He allowed just one baserunner through the first six innings, which came on a hit-by-pitch. He entered the seventh with a no-hitter in progress, but the Giants would get their first hit of the night to end the no-hit bid.

Regardless, the start was precisely what McCullers Jr. needed to restore his confidence after the disastrous inning he had in his last appearance. He would go on to complete the seventh inning before Houston would go to the bullpen with the large lead in the eighth. His final line: 7.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 5 K 0 HR, 1 HPB.

Houston gets back in the win column despite more struggles by Josh James

Josh James entered out of the bullpen for the top of the eighth but allowed the first run of the night for San Francisco via a solo home run with one out to make it 6-1. He would complete the inning and then return for the top of the ninth. He would have another rocky inning, issuing a leadoff walk before a single and double would make it a four-run game at 6-2, still with no outs in the inning and runners on second and third, prompting another call to the bullpen.

Dusty Baker would bring in his current closer, Ryan Pressly, to try and finish the game, now in a save situation. Pressly would retire the first two batters he faced before allowing a two-RBI single to make it 6-4, but would eventually get the final out to get Houston the much-needed win. With the victory, the Astros moved back into second place in the AL West standings.

Up Next: The middle game of this three-game set will start Tuesday at 8:10 PM Central. The Giants, working with a fluid rotation, have not yet fully decided on their starter, while the Astros will get another start from Brandon Bielak (2-0, 0.87 ERA) who will look to repeat the success of his five-inning, no-run start in Arizona last week.

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