After an eventful Week 3 that featured a lot of surprises, here’s five DFS-relevant facts to know so you don’t get caught off-guard in Week 4.
1. The Rams have allowed at least one rushing touchdown in every game.
In fact, the Rams have given up two straight multi-touchdown games to running backs. Chris Thompson scored twice on just three carries in Week 2—one from 61 yards out—and then Carlos Hyde punched in two 1-yard scores last week on Thursday Night Football. This bodes well for Ezekiel Elliott, who already has five multi-touchdown games in his short NFL career.
2. Tom Brady has thrown for 378 or more yards in four of five games dating back to last postseason.
Impressively, Brady has thrown for 447 and 378 yards in his last two games, with 301 of those yards coming from receivers who weren’t even on the team last season (Brandin Cooks 168, Phillip Dorsett 68, Rex Burkhead 41, Jacob Hollister 24). Brady has been making hay this season by throwing downfield more than ever. His 33 attempts that have traveled 16 or more yards downfield lead the league, and his 500 yards on those attempts also lead the league—by 151 yards. With Aaron Rodgers playing on Thursday night and Drew Brees playing early on Sunday morning in London, Brady is far and away this week’s highest upside quarterback play on the main slate at home against Carolina. Just remember, in tournaments a lot of other entrants will be thinking that too, providing an opportunity to go contrarian and try to match or come close to Brady’s production at lower cost.
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3. Dalvin Cook averages 23.7 touches per game, second in the league.
Opportunity is king at running back, and Cook is averaging more touches per game than running backs with higher salaries, notably Ezekiel Elliott (22.3), LeSean McCoy (22.0), Le’Veon Bell (21.7) and Leonard Fournette (21.7). This week, Cook has a home game matchup with a Lions defense that ranks 25th in schedule-adjusted fantasy points allowed to running backs on this young season.
4. DeAndre Hopkins leads the league with 37 targets.
Target volume can be misleading. For proof of that, look no further than Hopkins, who was tied for seventh in the league with 151 targets last season, but still failed to crack the top-25 wide receivers in fantasy scoring. With DeShaun Watson a major improvement over Brock Osweiler and Tom Savage, though, and already showing improvement last week with his first 300-yard game, Hopkins’s target value becomes more significant. This week, Hopkins will face off with a Titans defense ranked 31st in schedule-adjusted fantasy points allowed to wide receivers.
5. Larry Fitzgerald’s eight red-zone targets lead the league.
Fitzgerald has only converted one of those eight (12.5%) into a TD this season, but expect that to impove. He has converted 28.6% of his career red-zone targets into touchdowns. With David Johnson out, Carson Palmer has leaned on Fitzgerald, whose 34 targets are double that of any other receiver on the Cardinals. That trend should continue against the 49ers, who rank 26th in schedule-adjusted fantasy points allowed to wide receivers.