Week 4 Fantasy Football Start/Sit Candidates: Wide Receivers
Wondering whom to start and sit at quarterback this week? Below are two top-notch start and two sit options at the quarterback position for Week 4 of the 2022 NFL season.
Week 3 Review – Half-PPR scoring
- WR Drake London (Atlanta Falcons) @ Seattle Seahawks – 12.9 fantasy points (WR23)
- WR Chris Olave (New Orleans Saints) @ Carolina Panthers – 19.2 fantasy points (WR6)
- WR Marquez Valdes-Scantling (Kansas City Chiefs) @ Indianapolis Colts – 6.8 fantasy points (WR57)
- WR Darnell Mooney (Chicago Bears) vs. Houston Texans – 3.3 fantasy points (T-WR75)
Wide Receiver – Starts
Romeo Doubs (Green Bay Packers) vs. New England Patriots
As mentioned in Week 1’s Starts/Sits column, rookie wideout Romeo Doubs was the one player who had demonstrably begun to earn quarterback Aaron Rodgers’ trust. In Week 3, Doubs capitalized on the absences of wide receivers Sammy Watkins (Injured Reserve) and Christian Watson (hamstring) by posting team highs in route participation rate (94.4%), targets (eight), receptions (eight), receiving yards (73), and tied Allen Lazard for the team lead in receiving touchdowns (one).
On the year, Doubs leads Green Bay’s wide receiver corps in targets per route run rate (22.0%), targets (16), receptions (14), target share (17.0%), and is second behind the injured Sammy Watkins with 1.90 yards per route run, per 4for4's NFL Player Stats Explorer.
The New England Patriots are frightening on paper, having allowed a modest 200.7 passing yards per game, per 4for4's NFL Team Stats Explorer, there are reasons for optimism though. In Week 1, Miami killed the clock after jumping out to a 17-0 lead in the first half. Both Jaylen Waddle (four receptions, five targets, 69 yards, one touchdown, and eight rushing yards on one carry) and Tyreek Hill (eight receptions, 12 targets, 94 yards, and six rushing yards on one carry) found fantasy success. In Week 2, Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver Diontae Johnson got loose for 10 targets, six receptions, 57 yards, and a two-point conversion.
In Week 3, Lamar Jackson, of the Baltimore Ravens, threw for 218 yards, four touchdowns, one interception, and added 11 carries for 107 yards, and one touchdown on the ground. New England’s defense is not impenetrable. Rodgers and Doubs will move the ball.
DeVonta Smith (Philadelphia Eagles) vs. Jacksonville Jaguars
Philadelphia Eagles second-year wide receiver DeVonta Smith is the half-PPR WR8 over the last two weeks, averaging 3.28 yards per route run in the process, fifth most among all NFL wide receivers with at least 10 targets during that span.
Game script should fall in Smith’s favor as his opponent, the Jacksonville Jaguars, are top-six in both total yards per game (377.3) and average points per game (28.0). Jacksonville’s defense is still a work in progress though. Through three games they are generating pressure on opposing quarterbacks just 18.4% of the time, 22nd in the NFL, and their 252.3 passing yards per game allowed is the league’s 12th highest average. Philadelphia’s third-ranked passing attack is averaging 296.7 passing yards per game and the offense is scoring at the league’s fifth highest rate, 28.7 points per game.
Curtis Samuel (Washington Commanders) @ Dallas Cowboys
Washington Commanders wide receiver Curtis Samuel has emerged as a 5-foot-11, 195-pound version of Deebo Samuel. Through three games, Samuel is averaging a team-high 10 targets per game, 12th most in the NFL, and 2.7 carries per game. The veteran player leads Washington in targets (30) and is second in targets per route run (23.0%) despite playing alongside X-wide receiver Terry McLaurin, breakout rookie Jahan Dotson, and pass-catching running back J.D. McKissic. Samuel’s 103 yards after catch and 2.5 yards after contact per carry are also tops in Washington. Samuel’s 3.5-yard average depth of target should keep his production stable as quarterback Carson Wentz features him as a check-down option against Dallas’ potent pass rush.
* 4for4's full WR rankings can be found here.
Wide Receiver – Sit
Corey Davis (New York Jets) @ Pittsburgh Steelers
Second-year quarterback Zach Wilson is set to make his debut this week (knee), which brings uncertainty to the offense as steady veteran Joe Flacco had helped New York’s pass-catching corps take flight.
What is clear, regardless of Wilson’s ability as a passer, is that veteran wide receiver Corey Davis has taken a backseat to youngsters Elijah Moore and Garrett Wilson. Davis still has the second-highest route participation rate, among all New York wide receivers, running routes on 77.4% of dropbacks overall, which makes his targets per route run decline even more damning. Davis started with a 24.0% targets per route run rate but that number declined precipitously to 11.0% in Week 2 and 10.0% in Week 3.
Wilson and Moore posted targets per route run rates of 24.0% and 19.0% respectively last week and Wilson’s 29.0% now leads the team overall. Even in a good matchup against the Pittsburgh Steelers, who have allowed a 100-yard receiver every week, Davis cannot be trusted in 12-team re-draft leagues.