Fantasy Football 3 IN/OUT week 4











-   Week 4 –

Each week, the FANFOOD 3 IN/OUT will not include players that are locks for your starting rosters, just the ones that are considered “fringe” starters and may be outside the TOP 10 at each position.

They are the ones that you may have on the bench or ones that you can find on the waiver wire. Either way, they are the players we think will have a big game for you this week and players that have a tough row to hoe. They are the ones you want to start and players you need to bench. This week we will talk about 6 players that will help or hurt your team in week 4, and a bonus DST that you can plug and play.  As always, it’s followed by a great recipe, this time it’s Smoked Chicken Salad.


Lets get to it.



Week 4

Peyton ManningJamaal CharlesDemaryius ThomasJimmy Graham
Drew BreesAdrian PetersonCalvin JohnsonJulius Thomas
Tony RomoDeMarco MurrayJulio JonesJordan Cameron
Matthew StaffordLeSean McCoyDez BryantRob Gronkowski
Matt RyanDoug MartinA.J. GreenVernon Davis
Tom BradyAlfred MorrisWes WelkerTony Gonzalez
Michael VickDarren McFaddenBrandon MarshallJason Witten
Andrew LuckMatt ForteTorrey SmithJared Cook
Robert Griffin IIIFrank GoreDeSean JacksonAntonio Gates
Jay CutlerReggie BushPierre GarconMartellus Bennett


NFL Week 4 Games

click here for TV & Radio listings 

Thu, Sep 26 San Francisco @ St. Louis 8:25 PM ET



Baltimore @ Buffalo 1:00 PM ET
Cincinnati @ Cleveland 1:00 PM ET
Chicago @ Detroit 1:00 PM ET
N.Y. Giants @ Kansas City 1:00 PM ET
Pittsburgh @ Minnesota 1:00 PM ET
Arizona @ Tampa Bay 1:00 PM ET
Indianapolis @ Jacksonville 1:00 PM ET
Seattle @ Houston 1:00 PM ET 


N.Y. Jets @ Tennessee 4:05 PM ET
Philadelphia @ Denver 4:25 PM ET
Dallas @ San Diego 4:25 PM ET
Washington @ Oakland 4:25 PM ET



New England @ Atlanta 8:30 PM ET 


Miami @ New Orleans 8:30 PM ET 



Here is a handy NFL Schedule Grid you can refer to throughout the season…

click to zoom





For most leagues, your team needs at least 110 points to have a chance of winning. You never want to concern yourself with what your opponent is doing, just aim to get to this number, hope for more and let the chips fall where they may. To reach this goal you will need (at minimum) 12 points from each of your staring skill positions, over 20 from your QB, more than a few from your kicker and at least 11 from your defense. This is the threshold for the IN/OUT predictions.

Here are the basic league settings that we are basing our predictions on…


QB,2WR,2RB,TE,FLEX (w/r/t), K, DST
TDs=6 pts0 pts allowed=10
passing=25 yds/pt2-6=7
receiving=10 yds/pt7-13=4
rushing=10 yds/pt14-20=1
reception=1 pt21-27=0
blocked kick=5
Return Yds=50 yds/pt





DeAndre Hopkins vs SEA

from FFtoolbox:
When the Texans drafted DeAndre Hopkins, their hope was that he would provide them with some help in opening up the offense and allowing Andre Johnson to face less double coverage. What they didn’t expect was for Hopkins to make an impact so early. Johnson hasn’t been able to finish the last two games, leaving Hopkins as the go-to guy and he has delivered. Two weeks ago, he caught seven passes for 117 yards and the game winning touchdown in overtime. Last week he caught six passes for 60 yards. With Johnson less than 100%, the Texans will continue to look Hopkins’ way. If you need a flex or receiver starter, Hopkins makes for a great option, especially in Point Per reception leagues.
from Chris Towers |
Texans wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins was the top target in the passing game for the second week in a row by default in Week 3 against the Ravens, as Andre Johnson left the 30-9 loss with a shin injury. Hopkins was targeted seven times, tops among the team’s wide receiving corps. He brought in six of those receptions for 60 yards; the lone incomplete pass thrown his way came on a deep pass from Matt Schaub. Hopkins has at least 60 receiving yards in his first three games, totaling 243 yards on 18 receptions. The Texans may have to lean on him heavily yet again in Week 4, with the Seahawks coming to town.


FANFOOD Says: Start him over WRs like Vincent Brown, Greg Jennings, and Donnie Avery



Ryan Broyles vs CHI


from FFtoolbox:
Just as one receiver returns in Detroit, another departs. The incoming pass catcher is Ryan Broyles, whose return from an ACL tear suffered last season comes after he had a serious knee injury in college. The Lions were very careful about doing too much with him last season and Broyles only received 17 snaps in Week 3, his first game of the season. Despite the snap count, Broyles caught three passes for 34 yards. Now that Nate Burleson’s broken arm means a multi-game absence, a larger role exists for the second-year target. Look for Broyles to become the main guy out of the slot, though we’ll see how many plays he’s in on this week. After playing sparingly at the start of last season, he became more involved week after week, culminating in his breakout performance with six receptions for 126 yards vs. the Texans last November. With a full workload in Detroit’s pass happy offense, Broyles makes for a flex option and a high-risk, high-reward WR3 candidate with more upside in PPR formats.
from juanelway:
Broyles gets his first crack at the starting job and in PPR leagues he could easily catch 5 passes a game AKA what Nate Burleson was doing.
from Larry Hartstein |
Lions receiver Ryan Broyles, who played 17 snaps in his season debut last week, is preparing for a bigger workload Sunday against the Bears. “There will be no leash this week,” reports the Detroit News. With Nate Burleson out due to a broken arm, Broyles likely will start and get most of the work in the slot, the paper said. “Yeah, just go out and produce,” said Broyles, who’s coming back from major knee surgery. “I am definitely ready. I feel good.”


FANFOOD Says: Start him over WRs Kendall Wright, Chris Givens, and Golden Tate 


Bilal Powell @ TEN


from Jamey Eisenberg, CBS:
We get addition by subtraction with the Jets because with Chris Ivory (hamstring) out we can now start Powell in the majority of leagues. He’s been great the past two games with 26 Fantasy points in a standard league, and he ran for 149 yards against the Bills in Week 3. The Titans have only allowed Arian Foster to reach double digits in Fantasy points against them, but Ben Tate and Danny Woodhead both had at least eight points. Powell is a dual threat with eight catches on the season, and he should be considered at least a flex in all formats now that the job is totally his thanks to Ivory’s absence.
from by Michael Hurcomb |
Jets coach Rex Ryan said he was not surprised by Bilal Powell’s breakout performance Sunday against the Bills. Powell rushed for 149 yards, averaging 5.5 yards per carry.”We’ve seen this from him,” Ryan said, per Newsday. “It’s not like we’re surprised by it. He’s durable, dependable, and just a much better player I think than he’s been given credit for.” Though Powell was happy with his performance, he said he can continue to improve. “When you go back and look at film, you feel like you left yards out there,” he said. “You come in [Monday] and correct some things and look forward to moving on.”


FANFOOD Says: Start him over RBs like Arian Foster, CJ Spiller, and MJD.




Hakeem Nicks @ KC


from Jamey Eisenberg, CBS:
Nicks is frustrated, and rightfully so, after he had just one target and no catches against the Panthers last week. He has yet to score a touchdown, and he trails Victor Cruz in targets, 27-16. The Chiefs will likely use Brandon Flowers on Nicks this week, and it will be a tough matchup. Flowers helped limit Shorts to four Fantasy points in Week 1 and DeSean Jackson to six Fantasy points in Week 3. Dez Bryant beat up Flowers in Week 2, but he got 13 targets from Romo in that matchup. We’d love to see Nicks rebound with a big game, but it’s risky to start him as anything more than a No. 3 receiver in this matchup.
from rotoworld:
Following a zero-catch, one-target performance in Carolina, Nicks said that he “can’t throw the ball to myself.” We’ve heard the full quote and it was actually taken a little out of context. Nicks was trying to be humble, not offensive. Either way, expect Eli and the Giants to try to get him more involved against the Chiefs this week. It would help if Brandon Flowers (knee) sits out.


FANFOOD Says: Sit him in favor of WRs such as T.Y. Hilton, Julian Edelman, and Cecil Shorts  



Chris Johnson vs NYJ


from juanelway:
Chris Johnson is getting a ton of carries every week, but doing little with them. It doesn’t help that the coaching staff doesn’t get him involved in the passing game either. If you need 8 points, he’s your guy.
from rotoworld:
The Titans have an absolutely brutal schedule coming up, against the defenses of the Jets, Kansas City, Seattle, and San Francisco. Johnson owners should look to shop him this week.


FANFOOD Says: Sit him in favor of RBs like Lamar Miller, Giovani Bernard, and Knowshon Moreno 



Ryan Mathews vs. DAL


from Jamey Eisenberg, CBS:
Mathews continues his downward trend, and he’s losing valuable playing time to Woodhead and Ronnie Brown. Woodhead plays on the majority of passing downs, and Brown is getting the goal-line looks. Mathews scored 11 Fantasy points in Week 1 against Houston but has combined for 10 points the past two weeks. Dallas has yet to allow 60 rushing yards in a game this season, including matchups against Wilson and Charles, and Charles is the only one to reach double digits in Fantasy points thanks to a receiving touchdown. It’s difficult to even consider Mathews as a flex this week.
from rotoworld:
Ryan Mathews rushed 16 times for 58 yards in the Chargers’ Week 3 loss to the Titans. He got vultured by Ronnie Brown at the goal line and was not targeted in the passing game. Mathews is a talented back, but isn’t used as an all-purpose player and runs behind a shoddy offensive line. He’ll be a tough sell as more than a weak flex play when the Chargers face the Cowboys’ defense in Week 4.


FANFOOD Says: Sit him in favor of RBs to the tune of Le’Veon Bell, Danny Woodhead, and Ahmad Bradshaw



FANFOOD Streaming Defense of the Week




from bruno boys:
The Colts made a statement on Sunday by dominating the 2012 league runner-up San Francisco 49ers on both sides of the ball. The Colts are allowing a modest 16 points per game average, but the team as a whole is gaining momentum as their 27-7 victory over the 49ers last week shows. Coach Chuck Pagano’s club has forced five turnovers and nine sacks this season. Second-year inside linebacker Jerrell Freeman has come up big for two straight weeks and could be a cornerstone this ever-evolving defensive unit that has just six players who have over six-years of NFL experience. You could do a lot worse than picking them up to play against the horrendous Jacksonville Jaguars this week. Expect a safe double-digit day out of them this Sunday.
from juan elway:
The Colts D is not the greatest unit around, but they are steadily improving and Blaine Gabbert is back under center.
from fantasysp:
Top 12 in pass defense with 637 (212.33 per game) and is currently ranked 11th among DST.
Top 10 in time on field with 28:36:00 minutes per game and 60.67 plays per game. Currently ranked 9th among DST.
Top 10 in sacks with 9 (3.00 per game) and currently ranked 10th among DST.
Top 2 in penalty yards per game with 18.00 (2.33 penalties per game) and currently ranked 1st among DST.
Top 6 in points against with 16.00 per game and currently ranked 6th among DST.


FANFOOD Says: Start over DSTs like the STEELERS, Cowboys, and Texans.




Other Tools:

Fantasy Pros – who should I start?

Fantasy Sports Portal – Sit/Start Tool

Fantasy Football Docs

FF Toolbox – weekly cheatsheets

CBS Sports Weekly Projections









Smoked Chicken Salad Recipe




Chicken salad is one of those things that divides people and families like the Hatfield’s and McCoy’s.  Lite mayo or heavy mayo.  Bare bones or jacked up with grapes, nuts, and other sissy ingredients.  After many, many years monkeying around with my recipe, I finally landed on a preparation that I felt separated me from the pack.  How many times have you run across a smoked chicken salad?


There are a lot of different ways to approach chicken salad.  On this particular day, I chose to work with a 7.5 lb Purdue bird (because it was on sale).  In the past, I’ve made my chicken salad with just breasts, or just thighs, or a combination of both.  My only suggestion would be to make sure you have roughly a 1:1 ratio of dark meat to white meat.  So, on this day I split the breast and cut out the spine and that’s what you see in the picture.  I had previously prepared my smoker (the Bubba Keg on this day) and had it dialed in at 220 degrees with a mixture of Kingsford charcoal and soaked apple wood chips.



For this smoked chicken salad, you will need the following:

1 halved lemon, 2 tablespoons minced parsley, 2 tablespoons minced chives, garlic powder, salt, pepper, 8 oz. mayonnaise ….and that’s it.  For the two to three or hours that it will take to smoke the bird, I would budget for at least 2 to 3 cocktails or beers (your choice).


After you are completely buzzed or after a couple/few hours have passed, your chicken bits should look a little something like this and they should smell like a little bit of awesome.  After letting the chicken cool, peel the skin off and get the chicken down to a manageable size.  If you’ve decided to work with a whole yardbird, then you will need to break the bird down into breasts, drumsticks, and thighs.  If you are working with pre-cut portions then you are ready to rock.  Pull the meat off the bones and divide the white meat from the dark meat.



Here’s what the mise-en-place looks like.   Feel free to make your own additions and subtractions.  In the past I have tried adding things like toasted pecans, minced bacon, preserved lemons.  They were nice additions but I always seem to come back to this simplistic preparation.  If you decide to give this recipe a try, feel free to go crazy.  My only caution would be to make this base salad first and taste it before throwing in your other bits.  Smoked chicken has a pretty distinct and dominant flavor.



So, this is what you didn’t see coming.  The trusty meat grinder.  What?  Yes.  I fixed up the old Kitchen Aid with the grinder attachment (small die) and prepared to make some magic.  If you don’t have a Kitchen Aid with the necessary attachments, you can try and make do with a food processor.




The only thing that you are going to process through your meat grinder or food processor is the dark meat.  You’ll want to reserve the white meat for later.



When all is said and done, you should have a pile of ground, smoked dark meat and a pile of chopped white meat.  Now you will begin to mix in your mise-en-place.  The only tool you will need for this is a sturdy spoon or your hand.



Here you see my white and dark meat, chives, parsley, salt, pepper, mayo, garlic powder, and lemon juice ready to begin mixing.  I typically work in the center of the bowl and pull from both sides to keep things in balance.  For the mayo, I usually go a few (2 or 3) oz. at a time so I can closely monitor my consistency.  I don’t want this to get soggy.  I also add salt and garlic powder lightly as I go, tasting along the way.  This is a high wire act, and you need to make sure that things are not getting out of balance.  If it gets too salty, no amount of mayo is going to bring it back to where it needs to be.  Take your time and taste as you go.  This is very important to remember.



When it’s all over, you should have something that looks like this picture.  This chicken salad is not gloppy and dripping with mayo.  The texture should be firm.  The taste should be smoky, above all else.  The lemon should give you a bright, sparkling note.  The garlic powder should give a hint of bite.  The herbs should let you know they are there.  But the star is the smoke.  Don’t let the mayo or the salt overpower the mix (and believe me it is easy to do).  The great part is that, even though you have a full cup of mayo in the mix, it will feel like a light and firm chicken salad.  The mayo tends to bond with the ground dark meat to form a sort of meat-mayo.  I promise this will taste like no other chicken salad you have ever had in your life.



You can serve your smoked chicken salad any way you wish.  White bread works fantastically.  For this occasion, I decided to use Michael Ruhlman’s pate-a-choux recipe from his book Ratio to make some parmesan gougeres.  The combination of smoked chicken salad and the light, cheesy gougeres were nothing short of stunning.  If you have not heard of Ruhlman or his writing, I urge you to pick up Ratio.  It is the best non-cookbook cookbook you will ever read.  If you spend as much time in the kitchen as I do, this book has the potential to change the way you cook forever, as well as the way you approach your kitchen.  Be warned.  It is powerful, life-changing stuff.

source: BBQgeek

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