Week 4 had it's share of players who excelled, and those who failed. Here's a run down of some of those that cause you to pop champagne corks or hit the ripple hard. Were you fortunate enough to celebrate or did you spend the evening in an alcohol induce fog?
Brandon Boldin – yeah a guy you had never heard of before Sunday, carried the ball 16 times for 137 yards and a score for the Patriots. So much for Steven Ridley being the dominant option out of the Pats backfield. Damn you Bill Belichick. Oh, Ridley scored twice and had 106 rushing yards of his own, so it's not like he didn't offer a wonderful outing for those that started him.
Ho hum. Tom Brady threw for 340 yards and three scores. He even ran for a fourth touchdown.
Scott Chandler... all he does is score touchdowns. Chandler hit pay dirt twice before he was forced to the sidelines after a blow to his noggin. He's scored four times in four games.
Jamaal Charles was both a champ and a chump. He fumbled on two of his first three carries, but in the end he ran for 92 yards an a score while catching three balls for 23 yards an another score. He's on pace to go for more than 2,000 yards from scrimmage.
Ryan Fitzpatrick started out terribly and he tossed four interceptions speaking to his ineptitude. So how is in this section and not the one below? Because he just kept chucking the rock all afternoon on his way to 350 yards and four touchdowns.
Brian Hartline won me a league this week as my fill-in for Hakeem Nicks. I knew he would have the best receiving day in Dolphins history, didn't you? Hartline caught 12 passes for a score, but it was the 254 yards that was truly astounding. Ryan Tannehill just keeps throwing the rock to Hartline whether he is covered or not leaving Hartline as a potential WR3 option every week.
Charles Johnson had a day for the Panthers. Not only did he bring down eight ball carriers, he also deflected a pass. On top of that he racked up 3.5 sacks to set a franchise record.
Chris Johnson realized that while people are in love with zombies as we hit the month of October, they don't want any on their fantasy rosters. CJ2K ran for 141 yards and had two catches as well against the stout Texans defense. With Matt Hasselbeck under center, perhaps Johnson will be able to more comfortably be started on a weekly basis.
Maurice Jones-Drew caught five balls for 42 yards, but that was the highlight of his Week 4 effort. He was held to 38 yards on 13 carries by the Bengals.
Peyton Manning predictably torched the Raiders' awful defensive backfield. The elder Manning threw for 338 yards and three scores as only eight of his 38 passes didn't reach their intended target. He's still having issues with stretching the field doing most of his work underneath.
Willis McGahee torched the Raiders for 112 yards an a score on the ground and added six receptions for 23 yards. Watched a lot of this game too, and I don't know how it's possible, but McGahee really looks like he has turned back the clock about five years.
Though he threw for only 215 yards Cam Newton was still a fantasy star thanks to his legs. Newton not only ran for a career best 86 yards he also scored another time on the ground. Never bench Newton.
Greg Olsen caught six balls for 89 yards an a score. Perhaps all that love from the coaching staff, and the promises that Olsen would have a huge year, may come to fruition.
Andre Roberts had a hell of a day for the Cardinals with six receptions for 118 yards an a score against the Dolphins.
Wasn't Michael Turner supposed to be done? He's not. Not only did he rumble for 103 yards on 13 carries on the ground but he also was pretty darn shifty in the passing game too as he took a ball to the house on a short dump off as he finished with 68 yards on three catches including that score. Said it all offseason, 1,000 yards and double-digit scores are still possible for Turner.
Martellus Bennett was a star the first three weeks of the season. He laid an egg of epic proportions yesterday with one reception for two yards.
Andre Brown went from a 100 yard rusher with hype to an afterthought in days. With the return of Ahmad Bradshaw to the lineup Brown was on the field for only nine snaps. Bradshaw was on the field for 59 snaps.
Chargers HC Nor Turner. Somehow uber talented Ryan Mathews had to split carries with the plodding Jackie Battle. Even though he out gained Battle per carry, 4.4 to 2.6 YPC, Battle was still used at the goaline because, apparently, the team was trying to punish Mathews for a fumble in Week 3? Week sauce Norv.
Vernon Davis, what happened? Davis was limited to just two receptions for 28 yards. It's a killer performance this week but you can still start him next time he takes the field with full confidence. He's going to be a top-5 TE this year.
BenJarvus Green-Ellis didn't fumble in his first 589 career touches. He's now fumbled in back-to-back games. His fumble in Week 4 was at the goaline. While he did run for 82 yards, he carried the ball 26 times leading to an anemic 3.15 yards per carry.
Percy Harvin had a fantasy game to forget with three catches for 22 yards and three runs for another 12. Of course, he was still a dynamic football player on the day as he returned a kickoff 105 yards for a score. Hopefully your league counts return yardage.
Stevie Johnson lost his 4-game scoring streak. He didn't even catch four passes (two for 23 yards).
Did Julio Jones even play in Week 4? He caught just one of his eight targets, a 30 yard reception as Roddy White went bonkers for eight catches, 169 yards and two scores. Guess his hand injury was more severe than we were led to believe.
Brandon LaFell we hardly knew you. He didn't have a single catch in Week 4 as he was only targeted three times.
Mikel Leshoure laid an egg. Shocked at how many people saw the 100 yards last week and just assumed Leshoure was a top-20 RB. No one seemed to notice that he failed to average four yards a carry last week. This week he caught four balls for 37 yards, but he did nothing on the ground with 26 yards on 13 carries.
Jeremy Maclin played 64 of 69 snaps in Week 4 in his return from injury. Too bad the results weren't there as he caught just one pass.
Dexter McCluster played in Week 4 but you'll barely notice it if you look at the box score. The reputed PPR weapon caught two balls for six yards.
Darren McFadden rushed just 13 times for 34 yards and he had one catch for four yards as the Raiders were manhandled by the Broncos. OC Greg Knapp's zone blocking scheme isn't allowing DMC to do anything on the ground, and with the team also struggling to find consistency in the passing game, it's fair to wonder if the blame should reside with the players or the coaching staff.
The NFL. Pierre Garcon recovered a RGIII fumble in the end zone yesterday for a touchdown. However, Garcon does not get credit for a score in fantasy football. Why? Because the arcane way that things are done in the NFL say that he gets no points because (a) he didn't catch a pass and (b) he didn't get a carry so it wasn't a run. In essence, Garcon scored but according to the NFL he really didn't.
Christian Ponder has his hot start to the year abruptly ended. He was able to complete a mere 16 passes for 111 yards against the Lions. Ugly.
Mark Sanchez received a vote of confidence from Rex Ryan after yet another horrid effort. Folks, the Jets have scored one touchdown over their last 34 possessions, and Sanchez hasn't completed even 45 percent of his passes the last three games. I've said it before, and here it is again – the Jets are an unmitigated disaster with a seriously flawed roster. Sanchez owners better add Tim Tebow.
Through a quarter of the NFL season, Steve Smith is on pace for nearly 1,400 yards receiving but not a single touchdown.
Titus Young had another zero effort in Week 4 with one catch for 17 yards. He was only targeted three times, with an ugly drop coming on one of them. He's not even on pace for 40 receptions or 500 yards through a quarter of the season.
Ray Flowers can be heard daily on Sirius/XM Radio on The Fantasy Drive on Sirius 210 and XM 87, Monday through Thursday at 7 PM EDT and Friday's at 9p-12a EDT. You can find more or Ray's work at BaseballGuys.com and at the BaseballGuys' Twitter account.