Week 4 Fantasy Football Projections: Quarterbacks Set for Peerless Performances

Joseph ZuckerFeatured ColumnistSeptember 24, 2013

September 22, 2013; San Francisco, CA, USA; Indianapolis Colts quarterback Andrew Luck (12) celebrates after running back Ahmad Bradshaw (44, not pictured) scored a 1-yard touchdown run during the fourth quarter against the San Francisco 49ers at Candlestick Park. Mandatory Credit: Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports
Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

Make sure you're paying attention to your fantasy football roster in order to take advantage of some of Week 4's biggest mismatches when it comes to quarterbacks.

Enough has been said about how the NFL is becoming a pass-first league. That's rubbing off on fantasy leagues as QBs are more and more vital if you want to win each week. On a good week, you can be looking at 20-plus points.

This week features some tantalizing matchups when it comes to talented signal-callers taking on suspect secondaries.

Here are five quarterbacks headed for strong fantasy numbers in Week 4.

 

Alex Smith, Kansas City Chiefs

Sep 19, 2013; Philadelphia, PA, USA; Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Alex Smith (11) passes the ball during the fourth quarter against the Philadelphia Eagles at Lincoln Financial Field. The Chiefs defeated the Eagles 26-16. Mandatory Credit: Howard Smith-
Howard Smith-USA TODAY Sports

Alex Smith is one of those guys who's unlikely to hit 300 yards in a game. In whatever offense he's running, his coaches will just be expecting him to manage the game and move the chains. With a running back like Jamaal Charles, Smith doesn't need to be the engine of the offense.

That doesn't mean he is incapable of putting up big numbers in a single game. Against the shell of what used to be the New York Giants, the chance is there for Smith.

The Giants secondary was hit with injuries before the season and has struggled to slow down opposing quarterbacks. Expect Smith to put in one of his usual performances with enough touchdowns to make it a big fantasy performance.

Projection: 23-of-33, 257 yds, 2 TDs

 

Andrew Luck, Indianapolis Colts

SAN FRANCISCO, CA - SEPTEMBER 22:  Andrew Luck #12 of the Indianapolis Colts slams the ball down in the endzone after he scored on six yard touchdown run during the fourth quarter against the San Francisco 49ers at Candlestick Park on September 22, 2013 i
Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images

Just go ahead and pencil in whoever is facing the Jacksonville Jaguars as a QB who's poised for a huge week. This week, it's Andrew Luck.

It couldn't come at a better time for the second-year star, either. Through the Indianapolis Colts' first three games, Luck's been steady, if unspectacular, with 663 yards and three touchdowns to just one interception. Those aren't numbers befitting a No. 1 fantasy QB.

That will change, at least for Week 4. The Jaguars are a mess, and Luck should be able to get a couple of touchdowns easily.

Projection: 21-of-30, 286 yds, 3 TDs

 

Peyton Manning, Denver Broncos

Sep 23, 2013; Denver, CO, USA; Denver Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning (18) throws a pass against the Oakland Raiders at Sports Authority Field at Mile High. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports
Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

The Philadelphia Eagles might have an exciting offense, but they still have a terrible defense. The pass defense has been particularly bad.

That doesn't spell good things for Chip Kelly as he's going against Peyton Manning and the Denver Broncos.

Manning has been his usual self, lighting up the skies. Wes Welker was the perfect addition to this offense and gave the signal-caller a trusted short-range target. Julius Thomas' emergence has also opened up the passing game as opposing defenses don't know how to handle him.

It could get ugly in Denver as Manning will have a huge game.

Projection: 28-of-39, 315 yds, 4 TDs

 

Terrelle Pryor, Oakland Raiders

Sep 15, 2013; Oakland, CA, USA; Oakland Raiders quarterback Terrelle Pryor (2) controls the ball against the Jacksonville Jaguars during the third quarter at O.co Coliseum. The Oakland Raiders defeated the Jacksonville Jaguars 19-9. Mandatory Credit: Kell
Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

Terrelle Pryor is still an X-factor when it comes to fantasy football. He's not as polished a passer as Robert Griffin III is. With his running ability, Pryor doesn't have to be the most accurate quarterback or make a high volume of attempts.

Plus, he's still at that point where defenses have yet to get a wealth of evidence for how to stop him. It should last for at least a few more weeks.

The Washington Redskins have been abysmal on defense. Even Pryor should be able to put up good passing numbers against this secondary. When you throw that together with what he'll do on the ground, you get a nice fantasy showing.

Projection: 18-of-30, 220 yds, 2 TDs, 67 rushing yds, 1 TD

 

Tony Romo, Dallas Cowboys

Sep 22, 2013; Arlington, TX, USA; Dallas Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo (9) throws prior to the game against the St. Louis Rams at AT&T Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports
Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

What has happened to the San Diego Chargers secondary? It was a solid unit last season but has been abject so far in 2013. The Chargers have yet to surrender fewer than 299 yards to an opposing quarterback, and that quarterback was Jake Locker.

That tells you all you need to know about San Diego.

Tony Romo shouldn't have any trouble finding open receivers on Sunday. He's looked very good in 2013 and has yet to get into "gunslinger" mode.

DeMarco Murray isn't going to rush for 175 yards again, so that should mean more attempts for Romo and more opportunity to make big plays through the air.

Projection: 29-of-39, 278 yds, 3 TDs