Week 4 Fantasy Tips from Playbook War Room: Part 2

Fantasy Tips, Inside the Game, Playbook War Room

Here’s Part II of our Week 4 Fantasy Tips. . .


DeAngelo Williams (AP)

  • DeAngelo Williams has been a huge disappointment for owners this year. This week does not look like it will bode much better for him for two reasons. The first is that Jonathan Stewart has emerged once again in the backfield. That is something that is going to linger for the entire season. The next has been the Panthers shying away from the run. They want to utilize the talent of Cam Newton not only throwing the ball, but running the ball. On film the Panthers do not look bad up front, but there are too many variables right now to count on DeAngelo.
  • We at playbook see this week as a crucial one for the Chicago rushing attack. On film, the Bears OL has struggled to get off of blocks onto LBs at the 2nd level. Last week against the Jaguars, the new Panther LBs did not look good on film. They struggled to get off of blocks and fill open running lanes. Something has to give and we expect it to be Matt Forte’s success. His talent alone supersedes any other player on the field when the Bears are on offense. Do not anticipate any crazy improvements rushing the ball, but expect Forte to actually put up respectable rushing numbers.

Matthew Stafford (AP)


  • Jahvid Best’s production should match that of Tim Hightowers’ last week. The Cowboys run D stands out on film with their ability to control the line of scrimmage. Best is not a between the tackles runner, but will be able to have success catching the ball out of the backfield. The Cowboys will bring heavy pressure and Best can counter that by catching the ball in open space.
  • Matthew Stafford has been on fire the first three weeks of the season. His anticipation and arm strength are two things that have really stood out to us on film. He has begun to develop a gun slinger mentality with a courage to make throws all over the field. The Cowboys have yet to face a team with the passing attack or the weapons that the Lions hold so look for Detroit to put up big points.
  • While Jason Witten is the obvious standout right now in this offense, Dez Bryant is the most talented WR the Lions have faced and (if healthy) he should put up good numbers. We have seen on film that the Lions run a lot of zone coverage mixed in with the occasional man coverage. In their zone schemes they play with soft corners which will allow Dez to get free releases and be able to get into his routes. When the Lions choose to play man, Dez is physical enough to win off the line of scrimmage and get down the field with no problem.


  • Look for LeSean McCoy and the Eagles to struggle to run the football. The 49ers front seven could be the toughest in the NFL and will limit any running lanes McCoy has had in past weeks.
  • The 49ers will have to run the ball if they want to have success on offense. The Giants controlled the line of scrimmage against Philadelphia but also utilized the Eagles aggressiveness to their advantage by mixing in a lot of draws and screens. The 49ers have been committed to running the ball and should be able to adjust accordingly so that Frank Gore and/or Kendall Hunter can have lanes to run through.
  • Be cautious playing Mike Vick this week and expecting big things out of him. On the surface the injury is obviously a concern. Looking at the tape, we noticed that the Eagles offense seemed to really stall last week. They were getting very plain with their route combinations which caused the WRs to easily be covered. If the run game is shut down, Vick is going have to try to win the game by himself. According to our film study, Philly’s OL cannot block SF.  This will either play bad for Michael Vick or good by him having running lanes from the pocket. We anticipate that Vick will be on the move and is going to have to throw the ball well out of the pocket if he wants to put up any above average numbers.


Sam Bradford (AP)

  • Santana Moss and Anthony Armstrong should both have good games this week going up against a depleted Rams’ secondary. Moss has become Rex Grossman’s go to target and should be able to take advantage of a heavy zone coverage team. Anthony Armstrong is intriguing to us because of the success Torrey Smith had last week down the field. Armstrong possesses similar speed and could see a few shots over the top of the defense.
  • Sam Bradford has been very out of sync these past two weeks. Without a running game, he has been relied on to win games and he clearly does not seem comfortable enough to do that. The combination of a poor OL, and dropped passes have made it very difficult for Bradford to put up big numbers. Stay away from him and any other Rams until things clear up, especially against a sound Redskins D.


  • The Giants finally look like they have a good offensive system in place. They were dedicated to the run last week and Eli Manning had his best game thus far. Ahmad Bradshaw really excels running off tackle, something we have seen on film that the Cardinals struggle to stop.  Combine that with his ability out of the backfield and Bradshaw should see a lot of success this week.
  • The Giants were able to contain the Eagles passing attack fairly well last week, but that was as much because of the offensive scheme as anything. DeSean Jackson was really only used on plays down the field, which the Giants were able to control using double teams. Larry Fitzgerald should not be taken out of the game as easily because of his flexibility and size at WR. He and Kevin Kolb seem to be generating a good chemistry which should continue against a depleted Giants secondary.
  • Eli Manning is going up against a very weak Arizona secondary. We have noticed on film that these guys are not only very young on the outside, but play a lot of soft coverage. With a run game, Eli is going to be able to utilize play action which will give his WRs even more space to catch the ball. Using the run to his advantage allows Eli to play to his strengths and puts him at his greatest potential.

Roddy White (AP)


  • Roddy White will have success in Week 4 against the Seahawks. We have noticed on film that Roddy is being put in some atypical positions on the field, which have allowed him to have more space to work with and put more confusion on the defense.
  • Sidney Rice had a great first game back last week. However, we think that he is going to struggle against the Falcons this week. Right now he is the only weapon the Seahawks have at WR so he is going to draw all of the defenses attention. In Week 2 the Falcons put their focus on taking DeSean Jackson out of the game by making sure he had the attention of at least two defensive players on almost all of the passes. This allowed for Jeremy Maclin to have a big day, but luckily for Atlanta, the Seahawks do not have the same depth at WR. Rice should have a much more pedestrian day.
  • Michael Turner should bounce back from a terrible week last week. The Falcons got away from running the ball and it affected their offense as a whole. Matt Ryan might have put up a high yardage total, but they started to struggle as they got closer to the goaline. This is where we expect Turner to show up this week. The Falcons will continue to utilize their talent at WR and TE, but will fall back on Turner to run through a Seattle DL that has not stood out much on film.


  • The Green Bay offense should be able to have a field day against the Broncos. The Broncos D is based off of their ability to pressure the QB. Aaron Rodgers has proved that he is one of, if not the best, at beating pressure not only with his arm but his legs. The Broncos simply will not be able to cover the Packers’ weapons on the outside. The only reason to expect Rodgers to have only above average numbers is if they pull away early and coast the rest of the game.
  • The Packers front 7 looked very impressive against the Bears last week. They controlled the interior and outside run game well, holding Chicago to just 13 total rushing yards. This momentum should carry over against a Denver team that has really struggled to get a good yards per carry average. Going against a team with such a high powered offense, Willis McGahee and Knowshon Moreno are going to have to generate big plays running the ball to keep up; we do not anticipate that happening.


Joseph Addai (AP)

  • Against the Steelers, Joseph Addai was able to have success running the football. The Colts put an effort into controlling the game on the ground and were able to attack the edges against a good Steelers D. The Bucs possess a talented and aggressive front 4. Against the Falcons they were able to create a lot of penetration which in turn caused problems for Turner to get his feet going. Against the Colts’ zone run scheme, penetration can create huge issues, which means Addai should produce a more mediocre rushing number.
  • The Bucs have recommitted to their rushing attack. Last week LeGarrette Blount had over 20 carries. Blount’s physical style of running is similar to Peyton Hillis who was able to rush for almost 100 yards in Week 2 against Indianapolis. The Bucs should be able to run the ball between the tackles and see good success doing it.
  • If Curtis Painter starts, which it looks like he will, Pierre Garcon looks like he becomes fantasy relevant again. He and Painter seemed to have a good connection with one another and it will only get stronger as they continue to play together more.  Also look for this move to get Reggie Wayne and Dallas Clark more involved in their offense as well.  On film, Painter has shown his familiarity of this offense, though he hasn’t made every throw; Curtis definitely is decisive and makes the correct decisions.  He really increases the chances of this offense succeeding more than it has so far this season.

For more All-22 analysis watch NFL Playbook: Thursdays & Fridays at 8pm ET only on NFL Network.

Send your questions and comments to the Playbook War Room Team at playbook@nfl.com and on Twitter @NFLN_Playbook.

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