As we enter week four of the NFL season, the league’s top players are separating themselves from the pack and establishing their greatness while others seem stuck in endless obscurity. Any fantasy owner knows, however, that booms and busts aren’t always what a season relies on. Your ability to scope out those middle-of-the-road, under-the-radar players that exhibit potential; that’s what can make the difference. That, my friends, is what wins championships. Here are a few players that may not be hot names but should see improvement and flourish throughout the rest of the 2018 season.
Chris Thompson RB- Washington Redskins
Sure, Adrian Peterson is the man garnering all the headlines in Washington right now, as well he should, but Thompson’s ability as a pass-catcher makes him an incredibly relevant fantasy piece, especially in PPR formats. Peterson, now 33 years old, is already nursing an injury, and, with unapologetic check-down-enthusiast, Alex Smith, at the helm, expect Thompson’s already team-leading 23 targets to only increase in the coming weeks.
Sony Michael RB- New England Patriots
With Rex Burkhead hitting the IR with a neck injury, Michael is poised to take over lead rushing duties for the defending AFC Champions. But it’s a New England running back. Who cares? Sure, the Pats don’t have a history of run-heavy offenses, but after the underwhelming performance of Tom Brady to start the year, there’s a chance that the future hall of famer might finally be approaching the cliff and could plummet off it at any moment. If that’s the case, New England could focus on running the football, which would be great news for Michael owners.
Sammy Watkins WR- Kansas City Chiefs
Patrick Mahomes has taken the NFL by storm. Kansas City’s offense is loaded with weapons, but after a shaky preseason, Sammy Watkins was almost an afterthought in the fantasy community. Nobody expected KC’s young QB to be this good, but even with a regression, his floor is still higher than most. Watkins hasn’t had the flashy highlight plays of Tyreek Hill, but Mahomes clearly trusts his ability. He already leads the team in targets. In this offense, it’s only a matter of time before the touchdowns start rolling in for Sammy.
Eric Ebron TE- Indianapolis Colts
To this point, the triumphant return of Andrew Luck hasn’t been all that enthralling. Ebron has been a bit of a surprising bright spot, however, outclassing Jack Doyle and becoming a top 10 fantasy tight end. With Doyle constantly nursing a pesky hip injury, Ebron should get even more opportunities in Luck’s passing game. With two touchdowns and twenty targets, Ebron is second to only T.Y. Hilton on the team. As Luck continues to gain confidence and comfort in the pocket, expect those numbers to steadily rise.
It’s easy to spot fantasy stars. It’s even easier to OWN them. But the true test of any fantasy nerd is knowing when a player is close. Close to turning the corner. Close to catching a break. Close to getting more opportunities and becoming the player they should have been all along. Here’s hoping we all can have such foresight. If we do, it’s going to be a good year.