I couldn’t help but smile as Aaron Rodgers, Tom Brady and Drew Brees all put up statistically favorable numbers in Week 4.
It gives those early-round quarterbackers hope. They think to themselves, “Hey, Colton (this is Colton’s head talking, by the way). You did a good job drafting Aaron Rodgers fourth overall. Go get yourself a smoothie.”
But this hope is completely overlooked by a few things. First and foremost – value. I don’t care if Tom Brady posts 50 points per week – if Ryan Fitzpatrick, Carson Palmer and Jay Cutler do too, he’s just as valuable as those guys are. Second, why are we forgiving of their matchups? Brady faced a miserable Bills’ defense, and Rodgers and Brees both went up against awful secondaries. And lastly, is opportunity cost completely irrelevant? When you took those elite quarterbacks early, you missed out on some top-notch guys. You know, the Ray Rice’s, potentially Jamaal Charles, Arian Foster, Marshawn Lynch, Maurice Jones-Drew and LeSean McCoy…the list can go on.
Really, from a numbers standpoint, Week 4 was great. It allowed Brees’ owners to think their teams are still phenomenal, when really, late-round quarterbackers across the nation rejoiced at the sight of two quarterbacks, Ryan Fitzpatrick and Ryan Tannehill, post some nice fantasy numbers.
Week 4 Numbers
Brian Hartline had more yards than Jeremy Maclin, Percy Harvin, Steve Johnson, Malcom Floyd, Steve Smith, Calvin Johnson and Andre Johnson combined.
Who started Brian Hartline? I wouldn’t expect this to happen again, but it’s a great story from the weekend.
Tony Romo became the first quarterback to throw 5 or more interceptions in a game in 2012.
He’s been miserable over the last two weeks, and if you’re an owner, you may want to hit the wire for a quarterback.
And backup Kyle Orton outscored Tony Romo, too.
Ok, definitely hit the wire for one.
14 quarterbacks threw for 300 or more yards. In Week 3, this number was 8.
It could’ve been 15 if Josh Freeman threw for one more yard, too. Was it the replacement officials removal that allowed for higher tempo offenses? Sure, why not? Does that mean elite quarterbacks are now going to produce like they “should”? Well, they may produce, but so will guys like Ben Roethlisberger, Joe Flacco and Matt Ryan.
Chris Johnson led the NFL in rushing yards.
And only BenJarvus Green-Ellis had more carries. Take a look at my article from yesterday to see how I feel about CJreally?K.
Stevan Ridley was the only running back with multiple rushing touchdowns.
The Patriots’ rushing game looked pretty good…against the Bills.
Michael Turner got a receiving touchdown.
It may seem like a dumb stat, but congratulations to Michael Turner. He got the first receiving touchdown of his near 9-year career.
Brandon Bolden had an 8.6 yards per carry, the highest of any running back.
Again, the Patriots could do whatever they wanted in the second half of their game against Buffalo.
Joique Bell was second amongst running backs in receiving targets.
Bell was targeted 8 times through the air, while Ray Rice had 11. He could be a good bye week filler in games where the Lions are coming from behind.
Jason Witten was the highest targeted tight end.
Witten had 14, while Rob Gronkowski, the second highest targeted tight end, had 11. But unlike Gronk, Witten caught 13 of his passes to Rob’s 5. He’s baaaack.
The only quarterback who threw for more yards than Ryan Tannehill was Drew Brees.
And Drew Brees threw the ball 13 more times. But don’t expect that from Tannehill every week. Actually, don’t even expect half of that.
Brian Hartline received 43% of his team’s targets.
How awesome was Brian Hartline this week?
Matthew Stafford, Drew Brees and Brandon Weeden each had 50 or more pass attempts.
If Weeden’s receivers could catch passes, Weeden could be fantasy relevant. Then again, if they caught passes, he probably wouldn’t have to throw the ball so much.
Lance more was second in the NFL in receiving targets.
To be fair, Larry Fitzgerald had 15 as well, but it’s an interesting statistic given his output. Moore is set up to have a pretty good season.
Of players with at least 5 targets, Brandon Marshall had the highest yards per target average.
A very surprising performance against a great secondary. Jay Cutler and company really played well.
Some Year to Date Statistics
Brandon Weeden is third in the NFL in pass attempts.
And, just like this week, Matthew Stafford and Drew Brees are the only players in front of him.
Joe Flacco and Jay Cutler lead the NFL in percentage of passes greater than 15 yards.
It makes sense when you consider these two guys’ arm strength.
Darren Sproles has 11 more receptions than rushing attempts.
He’s finally carrying the rock, but Darren Sproles is definitely more of a threat in the receiving game than he is in the rushing game. I guess he always has been, but this year he’s on pace for 92 catches to just 48 carries. Last season he had 86 receptions and 87 rushing attempts.
Marcel Reece is 6th amongst running backs in receiving targets.
Why can’t Darren McFadden get more of these?
Ryan Fitzpatrick leads the NFL in passing touchdowns with 12.
Fitzpatrick and Carson Palmer are the faces of the “Garbage Time Hall of Fame”.
Arian Foster is the only running back with more than 100 carries.
He’s also the only running back with 4 rushing touchdowns. Could Foster really get 400 carries this season?
Victor Cruz and Dwayne Bowe lead the league in targets. Brian Hartline is just one behind.
Cruz and Bowe both have 49, while Hartline has 48. And it’s not as though Hartline got them all in Week 4. He’s a legitimate play in PPR leagues.