QB2 By Committee: Ben Roethlisberger, Alex Smith, and Ryan Tannehill Make Strong Week 4 Streaming Options

Ben Roethlisberger

Sep 22, 2013; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger (7) looks downfield against the Chicago Bears during the fourth quarter at Heinz Field. The Bears won 40-23. Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

Week 4 byes: Green Bay Packers (Aaron Rodgers), Carolina Panthers (Cam Newton)

The only non QB1s in the QB1 tier in my Week 4 fantasy quarterback rankings for 2-QB fantasy football leagues are Michael Vick (QB5) and Terrelle Pryor (QB11), but since Cam Newton and Aaron Rodgers are on their byes, that means the QB2 tier is an actual QB2 tier this week, with no QB1 slumming it in the lesser tier. If Vick and Pryor are on your roster, start them with confidence this week, as long as Pryor is cleared from his Week 3 concussion.

When looking at this week’s QB2 streaming options, let us first start at the bottom and eliminate some options. Everybody from Mike Glennon down to Blaine Gabbert should be QB2 options to avoid, either due to bad match-ups, or uncertainty regarding who’ll be starting/effectiveness. That leaves us 13 QB2 possibilities in Week 4. When looking at the match-ups, players highlighted in red have potential bad match-ups.

Week 4 QB2 By Committee Rankings
Ben Roethlisberger versus Minnesota Vikings
Jay Cutler versus Detroit Lions
Ryan Tannehill versus New Orleans Saints
Alex Smith versus New York Giants
Andy Dalton versus Cleveland Browns
Philip Rivers versus Dallas Cowboys
Eli Manning versus Kansas City Chiefs
Carson Palmer versus Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Sam Bradford versus San Francisco 49ers
Joe Flacco versus Buffalo Bills
Matt Schaub versus Seattle Seahawks
EJ Manuel versus Baltimore Ravens
Geno Smith versus Tennessee Titans
Mike Glennon versus Arizona Cardinals
Brian Hoyer versus Cincinnati Bengals
Jake Locker versus New York Jets
Matt Flynn versus Washington Redskins
Matt Cassel versus Pittsburgh Steelers
Christian Ponder versus Pittsburgh Steelers
Blaine Gabbert versus Indianapolis Colts

Out of the 13 quarterbacks remaining, five of them have unfavorable fantasy match-ups this week: Andy Dalton, Eli Manning, Sam Bradford, Matt Schaub, and EJ Manuel.

The funny thing with Dalton is that he started out the year with two bad fantasy match-ups, yet, he still scored at least 15 standard fantasy points in each contest. His one good fantasy match-up, in Week 3 versus the Packers, was his lowest scoring fantasy output of the season.

The Browns, Dalton’s Week 4 foes, did just allow Christian Ponder over 20 standard fantasy points, but that was caused in part by Ponder’s rushing stats of 46 yards rushing and two rushing touchdowns. On the year, the Browns have allowed only two passing touchdowns in three games, with Tannehill’s 272 passing yards being the most they’ve given up in a game. If Dalton isn’t able to throw for a passing touchdown this week, he might turn out to be a risky start.

If you can avoid Eli Manning, this would be a good week to do so as he faces a Kansas City Chiefs defense that has scored the most fantasy points at the D/ST position. The Chiefs defense in real life is ferocious, both in terms of pass rushing and pass coverage, and that doesn’t bode well for Manning, who has thrown 8 interceptions versus five touchdowns. He does have the sixth-most passing yards in the NFL but currently sits at a QB22 for the year in standard fantasy leagues.

The QB2 streaming options I’m the highest on this week are the first four quarterbacks listed: Ben Roethlisberger, Jay Cutler, Ryan Tannehill and Alex Smith.

It’s been a slow start to the season for Roethlisberger, and even though the Steelers lost by 17 points to the Bears Sunday Night, Roethlisberger managed to put up over 400 yards of passing offense, with two passing touchdowns and two interceptions. Those numbers were good enough for fantasy QB13 in Week 3, which were almost QB1 type numbers.

Going against a Vikings defense that has given up an average of 323.3 passing yards and 2.7 passing touchdowns per game this year should see Roethlisberger get in another good fantasy quarterback performance, and flirt with the QB1 fantasy tier for a second straight week.

Ryan Tannehill hasn’t been lighting up the stat sheet each week, but the lowest passing outage of his this year is 236 passing yards in Week 3 versus the Falcons, and he’s thrown for at least one touchdown each week. The New Orleans Saints aren’t an easy defense to target in fantasy football this year, but the Dolphins have showed a commitment to an improved Tannehill this year, who has no fewer than 34 attempts in a game this year. If Tannehill has to go throw for throw versus Drew Brees it could translate to fantasy points.

In three games the Giants have allowed Tony Romo, Peyton Manning and Cam Newton to throw a combined 7 touchdowns on them. Alex Smith isn’t the same tier as those three, but in three weeks, Smith has finished as QB16, QB7, and QB20 in standard scoring leagues. Versus the Giants here’s how Romo, Peyton and Newton have finished the week in terms of fantasy points at the quarterback position: Romo-QB19, Peyton-QB8, Newton-QB2. The recipe is there for Smith to have another decent fantasy week.

By no means are my rankings the only factor you should consider when making your decision as to which QB2 to stream this week. They’re just one part of the equation, and hopefully help in some way when making your QB2 decision.

*Stats used in this article from Yahoo! Fantasy Sports and FantasyData.com

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Salvatore Stefanile is a member of the Fantasy Sports Writers Association and believes that 2-QB fantasy football leagues will be the future of fantasy football. You can read about his 2-QB fantasy football opinions and analysis at XNSports.com.
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