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

The QB List Sit/Start Team offers their Sit or Start recommendations for every player in Week 4 of the 2023 NFL season.

Game Info


Kickoff: Sunday, October 1st, 1:00 PM ET

Location: Cleveland Browns Stadium, Cleveland, OH

Betting Odds: CLE -2.5, O/U 41 via OddsShark

Network: CBS

Writer: Nick Beaudoin


Cleveland Browns



Deshaun Watson (Sit, QB2)


Deshaun Watson is coming off an impressive performance against a stout Tennessee defensive line, finishing the game with 289 yards passing and two touchdowns, closing the week as the QB10. This was an extremely encouraging performance from Watson after an inconsistent (re)start to his football career. What was even more encouraging for fantasy purposes was that he was able to reach QB1 status without his legs – something he will need to rely on if he wants to return to QB1 status this week against Baltimore. This divisional rivalry has a history of low-scoring games, and with an O/U of just 41, Vegas is projecting another example of defensive-minded, smash-mouth football. It will be worth monitoring the status of Ravens’ CB Marlon Humphrey and EDGE Odafe Oweh, who are both projected to return this week from injuries. For a team that is already second in the NFL in yards allowed per play, this can only make their defense stronger. Watson has QB1 upside every week, but with a middling implied point total of 21.75, I am expecting Watson to finish in the QB2 range against Baltimore.


Running Backs

Jerome Ford (Start, RB2), Kareem Hunt (Sit), Pierre Strong Jr. (Sit)


Jerome Ford has been thrust into the spotlight after a devastating knee injury to Nick Chubb. The former fifth-round pick has shown well as Cleveland’s starter, however his RB7 overall performance in Week 3 was hidden by a two-touchdown day. After gaining 106 yards on 16 carries (6.6 YPC) against Pittsburgh in Week 2, Ford gained only 18 yards on 10 carries (1.8 YPC) this week against Tennessee. This is not the rushing stat line you hope to see from your RB, but what is impressive is Ford’s usage in the receiving game, adding five receptions for 58 yards and one touchdown through his first two games as a starter. As -2.5 favorites, we expect Cleveland to try to establish the run more this week, and after allowing 139 yards on the ground to the Jonathon-Taylor-and-Anthony-Richardson-less Colts, you can expect 12-15 touches and an RB2 finish for Ford against Baltimore.

Kareem Hunt made his (second) Cleveland debut in Week 3 with five carries for 13 yards, as well as 22 yards through the air on two receptions. Hunt will likely be the RB2 in Cleveland due to his familiarity with the offense, however, he is not the difference maker who won you championships in the past. He cannot be trusted unless his volume increases. Ford is the back to own in Cleveland, and Hunt will serve as a backup with FLEX upside unless something happens to Ford.

Pierre Strong Jr. actually led the Browns in rushing yards last week with 27 yards on six carries, but his volume is capped with the addition of Hunt. He should not be in your lineups in any format this week.


Wide Receivers/Tight Ends

Amari Cooper (Start, High-WR2), Elijah Moore (Start, FLEX), Donovan Peoples-Jones (Sit), David Njoku, (Sit, TE2)


The Cowboys made a huge mistake when they traded away Amari Cooper (and a sixth-round pick) for a fifth-round pick last year. Coming off a seven-reception, 116-yard, and one-touchdown performance against Tennessee, Cooper will have a much more difficult task this week against the Ravens secondary. One important thing to monitor will be Ravens’ top CB Marlon Humphrey‘s status throughout the week. In his absence, Colts’ WR Michael Pittman was able to reach 77 yards on nine receptions in Week 3. If Humphrey is available, Cooper is still a high-end WR2, but if Humphrey is unavailable, fire up Cooper as a WR1.

Elijah Moore is someone I was targeting in both Dynasty and Redraft leagues this offseason. Through three weeks, his volume and usage are everything I could have asked for, but we haven’t seen the WR1/WR2 finishes we are hoping for. With that being said, he has been averaging an elite 8.3 targets/game (as well as two carries/game), however despite catching all nine of his targets in Week 3, he hasn’t quite been able to capitalize on his opportunities, with zero touchdowns and a high of 48 all-purpose yards in a single game. Moore’s guaranteed usage makes him FLEX-worthy each and every week, but with an O/U of 41, this isn’t the game I’m expecting him to blow up (yet).

Donovan Peoples-Jones always has the potential of a big play, but with an average of 3.3 targets/game, he is not a start-worthy option this week against the Ravens.

With 92 yards and zero touchdowns through the first three games, David Njoku has been a disappointment so far in 2023. Also averaging 3.3 targets/game with a single-game high of 48 yards, Njoku should be treated as a TE2 until further notice.


Baltimore Ravens



Lamar Jackson (Start, Low-QB1)


Although new OC Todd Monken has begun his transformation into making Lamar Jackson a pocket-passer, Lamar reminded us who he was this week, posting 101 yards and two touchdowns on the ground, vaulting him to QB3 for the week. The Browns arguably have the best defense in the league and are absolutely going to put Lamar to the test, but he should always be treated as a QB1 due to his game-breaking rushing ability on any play. I definitely expect Myles Garrett and Co. to make this difficult on Lamar, but I am counting on his running stat line to keep him in the QB1 tier against Cleveland.


Running Backs

Gus Edwards (Low-RB2), Justice Hill (Sit), Melvin Gordon (Sit)


Gus Edwards has earned a respectable 5.0 YPC in the absence of JK Dobbins. He has officially returned to practice after entering concussion protocol last week, and appears on track to play, however he will have a big challenge against the Cleveland defensive front. Justice Hill has been limited in practice all week, and if he is fully healthy, we can expect some version of a nightmarish, three-headed committee now including Melvin Gordon. Edwards has the highest fantasy value, but can only be treated as a low-ceiling RB2 / FLEX play.

Justice Hill missed Week 3 and has been limited in practice this week due to a turf toe injury. In Week 2, Hill, not Edwards, vultured two goal-line touchdowns. Hill is a better receiver than rusher and may see more playing time if Baltimore gets down early. This backfield is shaping up as one to avoid for fantasy managers, however, if Hill is unavailable, we will gain more clarity and can expect both Edwards and Melvin Gordon to see increased opportunities.

Melvin Gordon played competent football after replacing Gus Edwards (concussion) in Week 3, gaining 55 all-purpose yards on 12 touches. Gordon’s opportunities will likely depend on the availability of Justice Hill, but he will likely be relegated back to the third RB on the team if everyone is healthy. If Hill is unavailable, Gordon can be treated as a desperation FLEX play, but I would recommend looking for someone with a higher ceiling.


Wide Receivers / Tight Ends

Zay Flowers (Start, WR3), Rashad Bateman (Sit, FLEX), Odell Beckham (Sit), Mark Andrews (Start, Low-TE1) 


Rookie first-round pick Zay Flowers has arguably taken over as the WR1 in Baltimore, averaging 8.3 targets and 1.2 carries/game through the first three weeks of his career. Unfortunately, this role has not always proven fantasy relevant, with two finishes in the FLEX range, and a high of WR24 in Week 1. Although he has not scored yet, he has shown that he is electric with the ball in his hands, and Baltimore has been scheming him into their game plan every week. Rashod Bateman and Odell Beckham are both currently not practicing as of Thursday, which may funnel targets Flowers’ way, but I expect the Baltimore passing game to struggle against the Browns’ secondary, making Flowers a WR3 this week.

The addition of Flowers has seemingly come at the expense of Rashod Bateman. The once-promising second-round pick has managed only 59 yards on seven catches through the first three weeks of the season, and until we see an increase of volume (or connection with Lamar), he cannot be trusted as more than a boom/bust FLEX option in a bad matchup. Bateman is still yet to practice this week, and his status will need to be monitored closer to game time on Sunday.

Odell Beckham missed Week 3 due to an ankle injury suffered in Week 2 against the Bengals, and has not been practicing this week either. We’ll need to monitor Beckham’s status up until game time, however it appears his status is in doubt for Sunday. Even if he is available, (similarly to Bateman) he will be a boom/bust FLEX option in a bad matchup, at best.

Mark Andrews is a top-3 talent at TE and must start every week, but expectations may need to be tempered against this top-tier Cleveland defense. Although they admittedly have not faced a TE of Andrews’ caliber, there is still something to be said for the 26 combined yards given up to TEs through the first three games. None of that really matters though. If you drafted Andrews, you’re starting him as your TE1.



– Nick Beaudoin

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