Waiver Favors: Early Week 4 Fantasy Football Pickups

By Ha Kung Wong  Fantasy Football Pickups

Twitter: @FBGarbageTime

Week 4 is almost over, so we’re back to help you keep your fantasy football team competitive!

As usual, all pickups are available in at least 50% of Yahoo standard fantasy football leagues as of Sunday evening.

Allen Hurns

WR – Jacksonville Jaguars – 16% Owned

Allen Hurns - AP Photos

Allen Hurns – AP Photo

Allen Hurns has very quietly had a good year so far.  In Weeks 1 through 3, he had at least 4 targets 60 yards in each game.  And each week was better than the last until Burns breakout performance in Week 4, where he snagged a whopping 11 of 15 targets for 116 yards and a TD.  Sure, some of that is due to the fact that this game went into overtime, but it all counts the same.  Believe it or not, Hurns is now 22 of 30 for 314 yards and 2 TDs this season.  That’s on track for a 1256 yards and 8 TDs. He’s probably not going to keep that pace, but clearly, Blake Bortles trusts him, and if Bortles trusts him, we should trust him.  Allen Robinson will remain the WR1 in Jacksonville, but it appears there’s plenty to go around, so pick up Hurns as a WR4 in all 12-team leagues and deeper.

Duke Johnson Jr.

RB – Cleveland Browns – 30% Owned

Duke Johnson Jr.

Duke Johnson Jr.

I really liked Duke Johnson in the preseason, and I wasn’t quiet about it.  But after 19 uninspiring carries over the first two games, my conviction was starting to waiver.  Then, in Week 3, they started throwing him the ball.  Nothing much, just 6 receptions, but he looked much better after the catch than during any of his carries.  And now the Browns have figured it out, as Johnson rushed eight times for 31 yards, but more importantly, caught 9 of 10 targets for 85 yards and a TD.  Isaiah Crowell will remain the starting RB, but Johnson can do plenty of damage as a passing back, and perhaps a goal line back (which he was used as during Week 4 ahead of Crowell).  I need to see this happen again to feel confident, but my optimism is renewed, and I would grab him as a RB4/Flex in 12-team leagues and deeper.

Kamar Aiken

WR – Baltimore Ravens – 2% Owned

Kamar Aiken - AP Photo

Kamar Aiken – AP Photo

This pick is entirely dependent on whether Steve Smith Sr. remains out of the lineup.  From what we understand, Smith has a few small fractures which will at least keep him out Week 5.  And when Smith went out early in Week 4, the primary beneficiary was Kamar Aiken, who grabbed 5 of 7 targets for 77 yards and a TD.  He certainly won’t be consistent, as Joe Flacco has been one of the most maddingly inconsistent QBs in the league over the years, but when any WR1 has some value.  So if you need a WR3/Flex to cover for a player on a Week 5 bye, you could do worse in 14-team leagues and deeper.  Just don’t expect too much from him.

Tavon Austin

WR – St. Louis Rams – 15% Owned

Tavon Austin - Getty Images

Tavon Austin – Getty Images

You wouldn’t have guessed it from the first three weeks.  Although Tavon Austin caught 8 of 13 targets, he only had 42 receiving yards coming into Week 4’s game.  Sure, he had 57 rush yards and a TD as well, but with the mess of RBs getting healthy in St. Louis, and Todd Gurley’s coming out party, that’s not likely to continue.  Then came Week 4, and suddenly, Nick Foles found a new best friend as Austin snagged 6 of 7 targets for 96 yards and two TDs as well as adding 20 yards on the ground.  Austin showed some great speed getting open over the middle and was terrific after the catch as well.  Last week he caught 5 of 5, but the Rams anemic offense severely limits his upside.  I’d like to see another good week before trusting him, but he’s worth a flyer as a WR4/Flex in 12-team leagues or deeper.

Willie Snead

WR – New Orleans Saints – 2% Owned

Willie Snead - USA Today Sports Photo

Willie Snead – USA Today Sports Photo

Pop quiz: Which Saints WR had the second most targets in Week 2 and 3?  Give up?  Did you say Willie Snead?  Do you even know who Willie Snead is?  Well, if you haven’t been paying attention, the Saints haven’t been blowing the doors off with their passing attack as of late without Jimmy Graham around.  And with Marques Colston slowing down, and Brandin Cooks attracting the most attention from opposing secondaries, someone had to step up and catch passes.  And that someone, both for Drew Brees, then Luke McCown, and then Drew Brees again, is Snead.  Snead caught 10 of 16 for 151 yards and a TD in the first three weeks.  And he came back in Week 4 to do more of the same, garnering 6 of 6 targets for 89 yards.  Need a flyer for the bye weeks?  He’s worth a gander as a WR4/Flex flyer in 14-team leagues and deeper.

And here are pickups from previous articles which I still recommend:

Bishop Sankey, James Jones, Tyrod Taylor, Percy Harvin, Terrance Williams, Chris Johnson, David Johnson, Donte Moncrief, Travis Benjamin, Matt Jones, Leonard Henderson, Michael Vick, Ted Ginn Jr., Charles Clay, Gary Barnidge, Antonio Andrews

Keep coming back for updates all week!