In this post, I will touch on the quarterbacks I like for Week 4, including my value play of the Week.
Carson Palmer vs LA – It is never easy for a west coast team to travel cross country for a noon start. Carson Palmer was in that situation last week, and threw 4 interceptions against the Bills. This week he should bounce back at home against the Rams. Palmer had a lot of success against the Rams last season, he threw for over 350 yards in both games. Coming into this game the Rams only have 1 interception, which came last week when Jameis Winston torched them for over 400 yards and 3 TDs. I expect an angry Bruce Arians to run up the score this week. I like Palmer as the top scoring quarterback this week.
Matthew Stafford @ CHI: All Matthew Stafford needed in his life was a little Jim Bob Cooter. In the 11 games Cooter has been the Detroit Lions offensive coordinator, Stafford has thrown for 26 touchdowns compared to 4 interceptions. So far this season, the Lions are throwing on 65.9% of their offensive plays. This has led to an average of 40 pass attempts per game for Stafford. Heading into 2016, Pro Football Focus had the Bears secondary ranked 31st, and now they are without corner Kyle Fuller. While the QB stats against Chicago don’t jump off the page, they only have one interception against two rookies (Carson Wentz, Dak Prescott) and an inexperienced Brock Osweiler. Last year in this match up at Soldier Field, Stafford threw for nearly 300 yards with 3 touchdowns. Look for a similar output this Sunday against the Bears.
Philip Rivers vs NO: Every season it seems like Rivers is throwing the ball to a bunch of inexperienced receivers due to injuries. His weapons this year are definitely more explosive with the likes of Melvin Gordon, Travis Benjamin and Tyrell Williams. Rivers couldn’t ask for a better matchup this week against the Saints. New Orleans has had a short week to prepare after their Monday night loss to Atlanta. The Saints had an awful defense coming into this season, and have already lost their top two cornerbacks. They are allowing an average of 309 passing yards to opposing quarterbacks through the first three games. I do expect the Saints to keep this game close, after all it is a Drew Brees revenge spot. Rivers should light up the Saints at home.
Kirk Cousins vs CLE – With zero running game, Kirk Cousins has thrown on 70% of Washington’s offensive plays. He has attempted at least 35 passes in 5 of his last 6 games. In his 2015 breakout campaign, Kirk Cousins threw 16 TDs to 2 INTs at home. Now he gets to face the Cleveland Browns at home, who have already given up 7 TDs to opposing quarterbacks. The Browns could easily not show up for this game, after their demoralizing overtime loss to Miami. Cousins should throw for 300 yards easily, and see some positive touchdown regression this week.
Honorable Mentions: Drew Brees, Ben Roethlisberger, Joe Flacco, Brock Osweiler
Value of the Week
Dak Prescott @ SF- Dak Prescott has looked very composed for a rookie quarterback. He has completed 67% of his pass attempts so far this season. Between an overturned Dez Bryant TD, a dropped Cole Beasley TD, and a couple of instances where his receivers have been tackled inside the 5, Dak Prescott has been very unlucky in the touchdown department. He has been able to overcome the lack of throwing touchdowns, with a couple rushing scores. Prescott should see an uptick in volume this week against the 49ers. Opposing teams are averaging 68 offensive play against them. In the last two weeks, the 49ers have allowed quarterbacks to throw 6 TDs. With Dez out, I expect a lot more designed runs for Prescott in the red zone. With the rushing upside, I think Dak has a good opportunity at 3 total touchdowns this week.