Fantasy

Week 4’s Fantasy Target Monsters

Week four was very lackluster across the board in terms of target consistency among receivers. While the previous week produced more than a dozen receivers exceeding 100-yards, that number stands at a mere five coming off of week four.

Of the 100-yard receivers, two were tight ends (Travis Kelce & Charles Clay), two were brand name players (DeAndre Hopkins & Michael Thomas) and the other was a player (Jaron Brown) that very few fantasy owners probably slipped into their lineups. What good is that!

We’ll take a look at some of the top fantasy Target Monsters (or lack there of) throughout the NFL during week four. To be considered a ‘Target Monster,’ a player needs to be targeted more than seven times within the given week. Hopefully this breakdown will give you insight as to which players to gravitate toward while assembling or tweaking your own roster.

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First, let’s talk about who didn’t show up in week four. Odell Beckham Jr. saw a whopping 15-targets but only hauled in 47% of them. Between being a part-time diva and posing as a more recent injury risk, OBJ is someone that we worry about moving forward. He’s undoubtedly a top-tier receiver, but has proven to be streaky lately, providing WR1 boom-or-bust uncertainty. Meanwhile, his teammates Brandon Marshall and Evan Engram both hauled in six catches on 10+ targets. Despite the distribution love from Eli Manning, the Giants still fell to the Buccaneers on a day in which opponent Mike Evans posted a line of 11-67-1.

Both Antonio Brown and Amari Cooper shared a spot on our local milk carton this week. While Antonio posted 34-yards on nine targets, Cooper failed to go even 10-yards on eight targets. Together they combined for a line of 6-43-0. At this point, Amari Cooper is of major concern. Cooper wasn’t exactly lighting it up before Derek Carr’s back injury, and now with the gunslinger sidelined, it’s hard to say whether fantasy owners should look to move him or stand pat. Outside of the running backs, the whole Raiders offense takes a huge blow with Carr out for 3-to-6 weeks. As we pointed out sometime ago, the Raiders go as Carr goes.

DeAndre Hopkins continues to be a fantasy Target God, as he caught 10-targets for 107-yards and a touchdown. Even though cornerbacks and safeties know where the ball is going the majority of the time, Hopkins continues to be the beneficiary of Deshaun Watson’s passes. Houston absolutely trampled Tennessee and it wasn’t even close.

Alvin Kamara was absolutely electric for the New Orleans Saints, catching 100% of his targets and scoring a touchdown. He’s sure to be a hot waiver wire add, though the Saints will be on a bye week coming up.

Keenan Allen and Michael Thomas maintained their relative target consistency, while Devin Funchess showed up for the Panthers in a big way by scoring twice against a terrible New England defense. Chris Hogan continues to be Tom Brady’s early season favorite and hauled in five passes for 60-yards and a touchdown. In an offense that doesn’t have a clear cut number one receiver or running back, Arizona’s Jaron Brown and Andre Ellington led the charge in a victory over San Francisco by combining for over 200 receiving yards.

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Travis Kelce was beastly on Monday Night Football and went off for 111-yards and a touchdown, hauling-in seven of the eight targets thrown his way. The combination of Travis Kelce, Kareem Hunt and Tyreek Hill is looking like something very special.

Todd Gurley and the Rams seem to be here to stay this year. Jared Goff found Gurley on 7-of-8 targets for 94-yards and a touchdown, while also making time for Cooper Kupp’s splash in the end zone on 5-of-7 targets. The Rams pulled out the victory over Dallas without much production from Sammy Watkins and are now first in their division at 3-1, sitting atop both the Seahawks and Cardinals. No one probably saw this coming.

Tight end Charles Clay is now a thing in Buffalo. He seems to be Tyrod Taylor’s first look and proved so by notching 112-yards on 5-of-7 targets. In Cincinnati, Andy Dalton swapped out Tyler Eifert for Tyler Kroft, who went for two touchdowns on 68-yards. Dalton also seems to be looking to feed A.J. Green more consistently, though most fantasy owners probably want to see more than 63-yards and a touchdown from their number one receiver. Regardless, it’s just good to see A.J. Green back on track.

In week five, the bye weeks officially begin. Atlanta, Denver, New Orleans and Washington are all taking a breather. The key Target Monsters that fantasy owners will need to replace in their lineups include Julio Jones (also nursing an injury), Demaryius Thomas, Emmanuel Sanders, Michael Thompson, Alvin Kamara, and Terrelle Pryor, to a lesser degree.