By Sam Lane
Each week of the NFL season, you can find a list of sleepers here at the O’Zone. The fantasy point projections come from ESPN’s non-PPR weekly projections, the scoring format used in ESPN’s standard fantasy football format
Quarterback: Jay Cutler, Miami Dolphins
Projected Points: 16
Although Jay Cutler has not been fantastic, averaging only 12.4 points per game this season, in Week 4, he is matched up against the New Orleans Saints, which are the second-worst defense against opposing quarterbacks. The Saints allow an average of 21.8 points to opposing quarterbacks, which makes this a fantastic matchup for Cutler, even with his struggles.
Running Back: Wendell Smallwood, Philadelphia Eagles
Projected Points: 10.1
Following the injury to Darren Sproles, the lead passing back for the Philadelphia Eagles, Wendell Smallwood, looks to step into that role and continue his success on the ground. In Week 3, Smallwood finished with 12 rushes for 71 yards, which was an impressive 5.9 yards per carry against what has been a stout Giants run defense. With an increased workload, Smallwood should continue this productivity in Week 4 against a mediocre Los Angeles Chargers’ run defense.
Wide Receiver: Brandon Marshall, New York Giants
Projected Points: 6.2
To start the season, Brandon Marshall had two catches for 27 yards through his first two games, which was a surprise to many owners who had high hopes for Marshall in his first year with the New York Giants. In Week 3, everything changed for the Giants’ offense, as it finally got the passing game going, which helped Marshall. He finished with eight catches for 66 yards. In Week 4, the Giants face the worst pass defense in the NFL, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, which allowed 20 more points to fantasy receivers than the average NFL defense.
Tight End: Austin Seferian-Jenkins, New York Jets
Projected Points: 5.1
Coming off his two-game suspension, Austin Seferian-Jenkins showed his ability to become a reliable target for quarterback Josh McCown, finishing with five catches for 31 yards. Seferian-Jenkins should continue to see a good amount of targets in an offense that struggles to throw the ball deep. In Week 4, Seferian-Jenkins goes up against the 29th defense when it comes to defending tight ends in the Jacksonville Jaguars.
Defense/Special Teams: Cincinnati Bengals
Projected Points: 9.3
In Week 4, the Cincinnati Bengals face the Cleveland Browns, which have allowed 13.3 points to opposing defenses. The Browns have thrown eight interceptions and allowed 11 sacks, making them a strong candidate to stream a defense against. With the return of linebacker Vontaze Burfict, the Bengals are primed for a strong performance.
Kicker: Matt Prater, Detroit Lions
Projected Points: 7.6
Through three weeks, Matt Prater is the No.4 kicker in fantasy. Coming off of an impressive 19-point performance in Week 3, he will face the team that allows the most points to opposing kicker, the Minnesota Vikings. The Vikings are allowing 12 points to opposing kickers, and with one of the strongest legs in the NFL, Prater should easily match that number.