Sit/Start Week 4: Reviewing All Fantasy Relevant Players In Every Single Game

Fantasy Football Sit or Start recommendations for every player in Week 4 of the 2022 NFL season

Game Info


Kickoff: Sunday, October 2nd at 4:05 PM ET

Location: Bank of America Stadium, Charlotte, North Carolina

Betting Odds: CAR -1.5, 42.5 Total on Oddshark

Network: FOX


Arizona Cardinals



Kyler Murray (Start, QB1)


Just ask Reddit, and you’ll find a simple explanation for Kyler Murray‘s below-standard play over the past two weeks. Call of Duty: Modern Warfare II is in beta, and it has been accessible to hardcore fans for two straight long weekends. More concerning is this graphic, posted by J.J. Zachariason of Late Round Fantasy Football, showing Murray ranked dead last in completion rate on passes of 15 or more air yards:

Murray was a sure-fire Top 5 quarterback going into this season, but he’s been on the short list of “Most Disappointing Players in Fantasy” after three weeks. Murray has thrown only three touchdown passes in three games, ranks outside the Top 10 in passing yards, and his completion percentage (63.8 percent) is well behind last year’s mark (69.2). He has yet to top 65 percent in any game this year. Just as alarming are Murray’s rushing totals: He has yet to top 30 yards on the ground in a game this season. For perspective, the former Oklahoma Sooner racked up 35 or more rushing yards in five of six games last season *after* returning from an ankle injury that forced him to miss three games.

Thank goodness for the Carolina Panthers.

The “Teal Curtain” defense ranks only 23rd in fantasy points allowed to quarterbacks, a mark that deceptively paints them as above-average in their ability to shut down opposing fantasy quarterbacks. Look behind that curtain, however, and you’ll find three far-from-daunting opposing quarterbacks: Jacoby Brissett, Daniel Jones, and Jameis Winston and his four back fractures. To date, Murray will be by far the most dynamic and talented signal caller the Panthers have faced. Start Murray this week and enjoy a “get-right” game that properly rewards his patient fantasy managers.


Running Backs

James Conner (Start, RB2), Darrel Williams (Sit), Eno Benjamin (Sit)


James Conner was a goal-line beast in 2021, and his proficiency inside the five-yard line propped up his fantasy stock this offseason: only Jonathan Taylor (20 TDs) and Austin Ekeler (20 TDs) crossed the stripe more often than Conner (18 TDs). However, Conner has notched only one score in three weeks so far in 2022, and he has yet to top 40 yards rushing in a game this season. To be fair, the former Pittsburgh Steeler has been battling a knee injury of late, which has contributed to his lackluster performance. Thanks to a favorable matchup against a Carolina run defense that’s better on paper (15th against fantasy running backs) than they are in practice, Conner is a worthy RB2 start this week. Neither Darrel Williams nor Eno Benjamin should see enough action to warrant a fling in your lineup.


Wide Receivers/Tight Ends

Marquise Brown (Start, WR2), Greg Dortch (Start, Flex), Rondale Moore* (QUES, Sit), A.J. Green (Sit), Andy Isabella (Sit), Zach Ertz (Start), Maxx Williams (Sit), Trey McBride (Sit)


Many fantasy football experts and analysts viewed Marquise Brown through Cardinal-colored lenses this offseason, citing past college rapport with Kyler Murray as a reason for optimism. It was an easy trap for many of us to fall into, especially when news of DeAndre Hopkins‘ six-game suspension broke. The fascinating fallacy of vacated targets reared its ugly head once more when the injury bug nipped Rondale Moore; the former Purdue standout has yet to play a snap this season.

Brown finally put up a boom week for his fantasy managers in Week 3, pulling in 14 of 17 targets for 140 yards. That’s the kind of target volume and production most expected from Brown, who caught only six of 11 targets for 68 yards the week prior, a time when fantasy managers were still trying to figure out what a Greg Dortch is. Dortch burst onto the scene in Week 1 by catching 7 passes for 63 yards, then followed up that unexpected showing with a pair of 15+ point gems in Weeks 2 and 3.

Moore, judging by his participation in Wednesday’s practice, may push Dortch back into the realm of fantasy irrelevance; however, we need to see what kind of juice he has before we can comfortably recommend starting him. We love Moore’s potential in this offense, but not so much the timing for him to realize it in Week 4.

Meanwhile, Kliff Kingsbury has to love not having to trot out A.J. Green, who has underwhelmed and looked like the 34-year-old receiver that he is. The Fountain of Youth will continue to be a mirage, much like the myth of the upside of Andy Isabella, almost nine years his junior. Ignore both for fantasy purposes. Instead, consider Zach Ertz as a low-end TE1 this week at a paper-thin position. Ertz had a touchdown sail through his outstretched hands last week, but we expect Murray to look his way in the red zone again. His target volume might decrease slightly if Moore returns, but he’ll still be an integral part of the offense for at least the next three weeks until DeAndre Hopkins returns. Maxx Williams offers no fantasy value whatsoever, and Trey McBride should only be on the radar of dynasty leaguers.


Carolina Panthers



Baker Mayfield (Sit, QB2)


The quarterback graphic above (see Cardinals, Arizona) is sorted by the accuracy of downfield throws (15+ air yards). Baker Mayfield appears near the bottom of the pack. However, he ranks sixth overall in his propensity to do so, meaning he has the potential to post big games if he and his receivers can start getting on the same page.

The prevailing narrative is that Baker Mayfield isn’t good, never was good, and never will be good…*record scratch*… but for all of the slander surrounding Mayfield, he has shown the ability to be a strong deep ball passer as recently as November 2021, when he ranked first in the NFL in deep ball accuracy.

We’re not going to sit here and suggest that Mayfield is going to play at a Pro Bowl-caliber level for the remainder of the season. We’re simply suggesting that he’s going to improve, more than most think. The Cardinals have been generous to opposing fantasy quarterbacks, allowing the eighth-most points to the position so far this season, so we like Mayfield a bit more than consensus this week. Temper expectations, but he’s a safe, low-end QB2 who won’t scuttle superflex or 2 QB squads.


Running Backs

Christian McCaffrey (Start, RB1), Chuba Hubbard (Sit), D’Onta Foreman (Sit)


Christian McCaffrey ranks fifth in the NFL in rushing yards so far this season, despite playing on a Panthers team that has won only one game so far. Surprisingly, McCaffrey has yet to be targeted more than five times in a game this season. It makes no sense why the coaching staff isn’t making it a priority to get the ball to their best player in space. In fact, Shi Smith, of all people, has only one fewer target over the past two weeks. Matt Rhule may want to address that shortcoming soon if he values his job.

In a disappointing year so far, McCaffrey has averaged 12.0 fantasy points over three games. As long as his quad cooperates, we’ll take the over on that total in Week 4. Keep an eye on injury reports, but for now, plan to start McCaffrey without reservations.

Unless the buzz surrounding McCaffrey’s quad grows louder, we see no reason to waste time on Chuba Hubbard or D’Onta Foreman. Neither will see sufficient volume as long as McCaffrey is on the field, which he has been for over 80 percent of the team’s snaps in each of the team’s first three games. The team says they’ll be limiting their stud running back’s workload…but they’ve been singing that same song for three years and counting. Ahhh, coachspeak. Gotta love it. Keep fading Hubbard and Foreman unless McCaffrey is ruled out; neither will see sufficient volume otherwise.


Wide Receivers/Tight Ends

D.J. Moore (Start, WR2), Robbie Anderson (Sit), Shi Smith (Sit), Rashard Higgins (Sit), Laviska Shenault, Jr. (Sit) Terrace Marshall, Jr. (Sit), Ian Thomas (Sit), Tommy Tremble (Sit)


Will D.J. Moore please stop with the disappearing act, already? He has seen exactly six targets in each of the Panthers’ first three games, and that’s not the kind of volume his fantasy managers had in mind when drafting him in the early rounds of drafts last month. Moore stands to benefit from an impending improvement by Mayfield, and we don’t have confidence in Robbie Anderson as more than a boom-or-bust flex going forward.

Anderson has already seen his target share drop; he saw eight targets in Week 1 but combined for only nine over the past two weeks. That’s only one more than Shi Smith. No really, that’s not a joke: Smith has seen eight targets over the past two weeks. The true punchline here, as it was in the running backs section above, is coaching malpractice in terms of poor utilization of passing game personnel. Neither Rashard Higgins, Laviska Shenault, Jr., or Terrace Marshall, Jr. are playing enough snaps to warrant fantasy consideration. Shenault raised eyebrows with a long, 67-yard touchdown last week; keep an eye on the roster battle going forward between Shenault and Marshall, two talented young receivers who have something to prove after lackluster starts to their NFL careers.

The Cardinals have allowed more fantasy points per game to tight ends than any other team in the NFL. Does this mean we’re recommending Ian Thomas as a start in traditional leagues?

No. Please don’t.

The Cardinals faced Darren Waller and Travis Kelce in two of their three games, and Thomas has a nagging ankle injury that limited him in practice on Wednesday. Thomas has out-snapped Tommy Tremble at a better-than-2-to-1 clip, yet saw only nine targets (three in each game). We can understand Thomas ($2,700) and Tremble ($2,500) in “Studs and Scrubs” lineups on DraftKings, but that’s about it. Leave them both out of your lineups in managed leagues.

One response to “Sit/Start Week 4: Reviewing All Fantasy Relevant Players In Every Single Game”

  1. Mark Borezo says:

    Me likey your sit/starts for each game big time. Mark Borezo

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