Kirk Cousins, Redskins
From RGIII’s backup to potential QB2 for fantasy purposes to potential QB1 in a couple of weeks. This week, Cousins lit up what will likely be regarded as a lower tier secondary by season’s end, passing for 427 yards and three touchdowns with a pick against the Eagles.
Austin Davis, Rams
With offensive coordinator Brian Schottenheimer shocking the world and calling a few deep passes, Davis posted the 5th most fantasy points amongst quarterbacks this week courtesy of his 327 yard, three touchdown performance. Sure, he threw a brutal pick-six to Bruce Carter but his other interception was a necessary late game heave that you can’t fault him for. While the Rams have no major stars at wide receiver or tight end, they do possess a plethora of solid options that all bring something different to the table. If Schottenheimer, keeps the training wheels in the garage, Davis could be half decent in 2014, assuming head coach Jeff Fisher doesn’t give the keys back to Shaun Hill (ugh!).
Aaron Rodgers, Packers
I’m sure he will bust out this week and make me look like a fool for putting him as Moving Down but the facts are that Rodgers is currently the 12th rated fantasy quarterback with less than 20 PPG. If he can’t light up a completely decimated Bears secondary this week, then that’s solid proof that the Packers offense isn’t what we expected it to be.
Donald Brown, Chargers
Ryan Mathews was lost last week with a sprained MCL. Danny Woodhead was lost for the season this week and rookie Marion Grice was plucked off the Chargers practice squad by the Arizona Cardinals. That leaves Brown, rookie undrafted free agent Branden Oliver and whatever veteran they sign off the street holding down the fort until Mathews returns. Brown figures to get 15-20 touches a week until then. Unfortunately, he had just 62 yards this week on 31 carries.
Lorenzo Taliaferro, Ravens
With Bernard Pierce out of the lineup with a thigh injury, Taliaferro split the workload with Justin Forsett this week against the Browns. He played more on run downs with Forsett hogging the receiving action. Against a solid Browns run defense, Taliaferro finished up with 91 yards and a touchdown on 18 carries. While it hasn’t been completely confirmed, it does seem like the Ravens aren’t necessarily sold on Pearce although we do expect he will remain the starter this week against the Panthers. However, Taliaferro is definitely a name to monitor, especially in dynasty formats.
Alfred Blue, Texans
Arian Foster has some serious hamstring problems and with him out of the lineup this past week, Blue locked down the backup spot with 88 yards on 14 touches against the Giants. Just don’t go thinking Blue has Ben Tate type of ability. If Foster is healthy, he will hog the touches but Blue is definitely a must have handcuff for Foster owners.
DeAngelo Williams, Panthers
Williams missed Week 3 with a thigh injury but with both Jonathan Stewart and Mike Tolbert out for Week 4, and Fozzy Whitaker dealing with a quad issue, Williams figures to get plenty of touches against the Ravens.
Eddie Lacy, Packers
Can you say sophomore slump? Lacy is averaging a measly 3.1 yards per carry with 113 yards on 36 carries. Dating back to last season, Lacy has averaged under 4.0 yards per carry in eight of his last 11 games.
Zac Stacy, Rams
First Benny Cunningham started eating into Stacy’s touches and now Trey Watts is as well. Let’s face it – the Rams are not sold on Stacy as their long term starter at running back. Preseason predictions that he was a volume play were bang on and it says here that the volume is about to start drying up.
Jordan Matthews, Eagles
With preseason reports indicating the Eagles had a draft day steal on their hands with Matthews, it wasn’t altogether surprising that his breakout performance came just three games into his rookie season. Matthews looked like a future star against the Redskins as he hauled in eight of his nine targets for 59 yards and a pair of touchdowns. While Washington sports a faulty secondary and Matthews remains behind Riley Cooper on the depth chart, it’s worth noting that both players have been targeted 17 times this season.
Cecil Shorts, Jaguars
While Allen Hurns and Allen Robinson have flashed during the first three games of the season, the Jaguars group of young receivers was also called out by the team’s coaching staff. This group cries out for a veteran presence and Shorts brings that to the table, at least when he’s healthy enough to play. He totalled five catches for 35 yards and a score this week and should be a target machine moving forward. Just don’t expect a huge touchdown count given the team’s struggles on offense, particularly along the offensive line.
Kelvin Benjamin, Panthers
I get the feeling that this man child will be Moving Up every week this year. With 253 receiving yards, he could top 1,000 yards as a rookie and it is already clear that he will be garner a fair number of red zone targets.
Andrew Hawkins and Miles Austin, Browns
Three games into the season, it appears that Hawkins will finish 2014 as a PPR demon. The free agent signee hasn’t disappointed with 21 receptions for 244 yards. After a Week 1 dud, Austin has 12 receptions for 95 yards in his last two games, finding the end zone in each contest. With the Browns passing offense better than advertised, there is some surprising fantasy value amongst the team’s wide receivers.
Jeremy Kerley, Jets
Outside of Eric Decker, Kerley is quarterback Geno Smith’s most trusted option in the passing game. And Decker is having some hamstring issues. With his target count moving from five to eight to 11, Kerley just might be PPR gold by season’s end.
Larry Fitzgerald, Cardinals
As predicted in our preseason rankings, Fitz has clearly been usurped by Michael Floyd. We just didn’t predict this level of drop off as he has caught just 10 of his 21 targets for 107 yards and no touchdowns.
Owen Daniels, Texans
While Daniels bombed this week with one catch for eight yards, there are better days ahead. He looked solid in Week 1 and 2 with nine receptions for 64 yards and a pair of touchdowns in limited action, but he moves to the starting line up with Dennis Pitta out for the year. Daniels rates as a low end TE1 over the balance of the season.
Kyle Rudolph, Vikings
Out for six weeks.
Dennis Pitta, Ravens
Out for the rest of 2014.