Start Em Sit Em: Fantasy Football Week 4 Quarterbacks

Dave StringerCorrespondent ISeptember 29, 2010

CHARLOTTE, NC - NOVEMBER 19:  Chad Henne #7 and teammates Lousaka Polite #36 and Ricky Williams #34 of the Miami Dolphins celebrate as they run off the field after a touchdown against the Carolina Panthers during their game at Bank of America Stadium on Novemer 19, 2009 in Charlotte, North Carolina.  (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)
Streeter Lecka/Getty Images


The bye weeks are upon us with the Cowboys, Chiefs, Vikings, and Buccaneers off in Week 4. With Romo and Favre out, owners of fantasy teams will be looking for quality starters and hitting their bench or the waiver wire looking for production at quarterback.

Luckily, just about all of the worst passing defenses in the league are in action this week so there should be something for everybody at quarterback in Week 4.

Start ‘Em

Michael Vick, Eagles vs. Redskins

Vick has played lights out over the past two-and-a-half games, piling up 750 passing yards, six passing touchdowns to go along with 170 yards rushing, and a touchdown. This week, the Eagles face the Redskins in a home matchup with Washington coming off a disappointing road loss to St. Louis.

The Redskins rank 31st in passing defense and have given up 326 passing yards per game as well as five touchdowns on the season. Rams rookie quarterback Sam Bradford threw for 235 yards and a touchdown last week. Vick should easily surpass those totals. 

Must Read: Fantasy Football Week 4 Stock Up, Stock Down

Chad Henne, Dolphins at Patriots

After a pair of disappointing weeks to start the season, Henne lit up the Jets last week for 363 yards and a pair of touchdowns in a home loss. Better yet, he finally seemed to be on the same page as key offseason acquisition Brandon Marshall, with the two connecting ten times for 166 yards and a touchdown.

The Patriots defense is certainly not what it once was and at cornerback, they start rookie first-round pick Devin McCourty and Kyle Arrington or Darius Butler, who also lack experience.

I should also mention their pass defense has given up 750 yards and seven touchdowns thus far in 2010.

Matt Ryan, Falcons vs. 49ers

Ryan is coming off a solid performance in a road upset of the Saints, throwing for 228 yards and a pair of touchdowns in a game that went into overtime. He is beginning to develop into a solid fantasy starter and has 45 points over the past two games.

The 49ers come to Atlanta this week and, while they have surrendered a respectable 217 yards per game through the air, they have also given up seven passing touchdowns.

Look for the Falcons to exploit the matchups in this one, with the 49ers safeties no match for tight end Tony Gonzalez and Nate Clements, no longer an elite cornerback, on wide receiver Roddy White.

Sam Bradford, Rams vs. Redskins

I told you Bradford was a respectable starter last week against the Redskins for those playing the matchups at quarterback, and he responded with a respectable 15 fantasy points. Decent enough, albeit not great.

The Rams face the Seahawks in a home game and, get ready for this, can vault themselves into a tie for the lead in the NFC West with a win and an Arizona loss. Yes, the NFC West is that bad.

Back to fantasy, the Seahawks rank 30th in passing defense and are hardly road warriors, having lost nine of their last 10 on the road. Okay, so their one win was in St. Louis.

I still like Bradford this week. The rookie has moxie and I expect him to bring it in his first big game.

Sit ‘Em

Joe Flacco, Ravens at Steelers

Who do we get this week? Good Joe? Or Bad Joe?

After struggling against the Jets and Bengals, Flacco rebounded with a solid game this week against Cleveland, further entrenching his status as a matchup play. In the Raven’s road game last year in Pittsburgh, Flacco went 13 of 25 for 166 yards with a pair of touchdowns and an interception.

In 2010, the Steelers rank in the middle of the pack in passing defense. However, they have given up just one touchdown pass and ranked 28th  in fantasy points allowed against opposing quarterbacks.

Charlie Batch, Steelers vs. Ravens

That’s right—I don’t like either quarterback in this matchup that features a pair of bruising defenses. While Batch was solid fantasy-wise last week against the Bucs, courtesy of three touchdown passes and an underwhelming 186 yards passing, facing the Ravens is another things altogether.  

We keep hearing how the Ravens secondary is in shambles and is a major weak link for their defense, yet they have given up 382 yards and a touchdown so far in 2010. That’s for three games, not one.

Are you betting Charlie Batch will change that? Didn’t think so.

David Garrard, Jaguars vs. Colts

This is a case of which stat do you prefer?

I could tell you that Garrard is currently the 25th ranked fantasy quarterback with a paltry 448 passing yards and you would sit him. Or I could tell you that the Colts rank 21st in passing defense and you would start him.

I’d sit him.

Carson Palmer, Bengals vs. Browns

As each week passes, the odds of Palmer reclaiming his status as a fantasy stud at quarterback dwindle.

Despite a solid performance during the opening week of the season, Palmer has been a disappointment in each of the last two games, failing to top 200 yards passing. That continues a disturbing trend dating back to last season when he failed to pass for 200 yards seven times and topped 300 yards just once.

Against the Browns last year, he threw for 340 yards and three touchdowns. In two games. Not one.

For more detailed projections, go to FFToday's 2010 Week 4 quarterback projections and rankings

Dave Stringer is a staff writer at, home of the popular Cheatsheet Compiler & Draft Buddy custom cheatsheet and draft tracking software.


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