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STRENGTH OF SCHEDULE: Good/Bad Matchups – Week 4

Well, that was a fun week. Several teams came out of nowhere to upset their foes (I’m looking at you, New York Jets and Chicago), while most likely ruining some survivor pools. Jay Cutler could not do anything against the Jets, but he does get another great matchup against New Orleans in Week 4. That being said, he will not be mentioned again in this week’s article (shame on you, Jay Cutler!). Andy Dalton sure looked better, didn’t he? I’m looking for his success to continue, as Cincinnati was committed to getting the rock in the hands of their play-makers (the squeaky wheel gets the grease, am I right?) The fantasy season is still young, so don’t freak out if you don’t have a surefire QB1 or TE1 that isn’t performing for your fantasy squad. That’s what I’m here for, Sharks! Let’s go ahead and get into some quarterbacks and tight ends with exploitable matchups in Week 4.

Good Matchups

Quarterbacks

Jay Cutler, Miami (vs. New Orleans)

He does get the New Orleans defense, which is ranked the easiest matchup for quarterbacks. He is not my streamer, though (I know … I said I wouldn’t mention him again, but this is a strength of schedule article!). If you’re feeling ballsy, go ahead and try again with Cutler. Moving along …

Tyrod Taylor, Buffalo (at Atlanta)

All he did was throw two touchdowns against the best secondary in the league (Denver) in Week 3. Now he gets the fifth-best matchup for quarterbacks in Week 4 when he goes to battle with Atlanta. You know Atlanta can score, so look for Taylor to air it out more than usual in this game. You also have a nice floor with Taylor, as he already has 106 rushing yards through three games. This is a safe stream with the opportunity for a high ceiling. Stream away, Sharks.

Case Keenum, Minnesota (vs. Detroit)

Insert Sam Bradford here if he suits up, but don’t shy away from Keenum this week. He just lit up the Tampa Bay defense to the tune of 369 yards and three touchdowns. If you saw that coming, treat yourself to a bear claw this morning, as you deserve it. Detroit is coming to Minnesota, and Detroit grades out as the seventh-easiest matchup for quarterbacks. Yes, I feel gross recommending Keenum, but his Week 3 performance can’t go unnoticed.

Bad Matchup

Kirk Cousins, Washington (at Kansas City)

Cousins gets the pleasure of traveling to Arrowhead Monday night in what will be a TOUGH matchup for him. Kansas City grades out as the fifth-hardest matchup for quarterbacks, so don’t expect the same outcome from Week 3, when he posted 365 yards and three touchdowns against Oakland. Don’t say I didn’t warn you!

Good Matchups

Tight Ends

Austin Seferian-Jenkins, New York Jets (vs. Jacksonville)

I mentioned him last week in the “looking ahead” section, and he draws the Jacksonville defense, who grade out as the second-easiest matchup for tight ends. He nabbed 5-of-6 targets against Miami in Week 3, and I expect the target share to exceed that in Week 4. What was all of that “out of shape” talk from the coaching staff last week? He looked great (and not fat or sluggish), so don’t be scared to stream Seferian-Jenkins this week.

Jared Cook, Oakland (at Denver)

You may look at this as a bad matchup, but it really isn’t. Denver has trouble with tight ends, as it grades out as the fourth-easiest matchup for tight ends. Charles Clay and Jason Witten have scored against them the past two weeks, and I look for that trend to continue in Week 4. Cook was the only bright spot for Oakland in Week 3, as he posted 43 yards and a touchdown against Washington. Keep him in your lineups this week, please and thank you.

Bad Matchup

Austin Hooper, Atlanta (vs. Buffalo)

Fun fact: Hooper has two targets in each contest through Week 3. Fun fact: Buffalo grades out as the second-hardest matchup for a tight end. Fun fact: Hooper won’t have success in week 4. OK, enough with the fun facts, as I’m sure you get the point. Two targets a game just won’t cut it in the NFL, and when you partner that with his matchup this week, you can see he is set up for failure in Week 4. Stay away from this upcoming disaster …

A Look Ahead …

Whoever the heck is starting for Minnesota

I mentioned him (or them?) above, and Minnesota gets Chicago in Week 5 and Green Bay in Week 6. Those are both two opposing teams that rank as a Top 6 matchup for quarterbacks. Whether or not Sam Bradford can go, I believe Case Keenum (I can’t believe I just said that …anyone have some Pepto Bismol?) can be stream-able for three weeks in a row. He has the weapons and he has the matchups … can he (or Bradford) take advantage of that? After Week 3’s performance, my answer is yes.

Austin Seferian-Jenkins, New York Jets

Yep, that’s two weeks in a row that Seferian-Jenkins Is mentioned here. Week 5 is a cake matchup against Cleveland (third-easiest matchup for tight ends) and in Week 6, New York hosts New England. News flash: New England’s defense isn’t as good as perceived. Weeks 2 and 3 are gone, and both Coby Fleener and Ryan Griffin (sleeper alert! If you are in a deep league or are flat-out struggling for a tight end … Griffin could be a sneaky starter for your fantasy team … Griffin and Deshaun Watson showed great chemistry in Week 3) found the end zone against New England. You could do far worse at the tight end position. After this week, he may no longer be on the waiver wire for you …

That sums up this week’s edition of quarterback and tight end streamers based on strength of schedule. Now that we are three weeks into the NFL season, it’s easier to depict who has a good matchup and who does not. I encourage you to use Fantasy Sharks Strength of Schedule tool, which is found here. As always, don’t hesitate to ask me any and everything regarding fantasy football on Twitter (my Twitter handle can be found below). Until next time, Sharks!

About Ryan Black

Ryan is a fantasy football enthusiast who specializes in redraft and keeper leagues. He lives in Yorktown, VA with his beautiful wife, son, and daughter. Feel free to ask him any and everything regarding fantasy football on twitter. It's all about winning that fantasy football championship, Sharks!