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Fantasy Football 2013: Dolphins at Saints Week 4 Preview

Miami Dolphins (3-0) at New Orleans Saints (3-0)

September 30, 8:40 PM (ET)

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There’s another pretty solid matchup looming for Week 4 on “Monday Night Football.” This one will be a battle between two unbeaten teams--and the interesting thing is that no one saw that coming at the beginning of the year. The Dolphins (3-0), fresh off a nail-biting comeback win over the Falcons, will head over to New Orleans to face the Saints (3-0), who clobbered the Cardinals in Week 3.
There are plenty of important fantasy considerations in this one, and the on-field performances will decide many games. With that in mind, let’s take a closer look at the noteworthy names on both sides and see what we should be expecting from our fantasy rosters on Monday.

Ryan Tannehill, QB, Miami Dolphins: Most owners still don’t quite trust Tannehill in fantasy just yet, and there are a couple of reasons why. First, he’s had some major issues with turnovers. He’s got a pair of interceptions (compared to four touchdowns) and has fumbled five times in just the past two weeks. He’s also been sacked 14 times, but that’s not really his fault of course. The one thing he does have going for him is accuracy; Tannehill hasn’t posted less than 63.2 percent passing so far. You’ll see some owners plugging him in this week in the absence of Aaron Rodgers and Cam Newton. While we don’t hate that move, we don’t love it either.

Fantasy Football 2013: Dolphins at Saints Week 4 Preview

Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY Sport

Drew Brees: QB, New Orleans Saints: As the second QB off the board in your fantasy draft (or maybe even the first), hopes have been high for Brees as usual this season. He certainly delivered against the Cardinals, tossing for 342 yards and three scores in a very Brees-like outing (he also added 21 yards and a TD on the ground). That’s much better than his first pair of games, when he tossed three touchdowns and three picks. We expect him to perform pretty well here; regardless of the matchup, he’s a must-start.

Lamar Miller, RB, Miami Dolphins: We figured there would be some fantasy trouble in the Miami backfield. Miller has the edge so far in carries (32) and yards (134) but has one less touchdown than fellow RB Daniel Thomas. The Atlanta game wasn’t exactly encouraging: Miller had just eight carries and one reception. Overall, he’s really only had one good week so far. Still, we’ll give him a flex designation for Monday; if he can get into the end zone, he’ll be worth it.

Darren Sproles, RB, New Orleans Saints: We put Sproles here instead of team rushing leader Pierre Thomas because we wanted to whine about how mediocre Sproles has been in fantasy. His under-use was at a peak in Week 3, when he recorded just three carries and four receptions. Sure, the Saints have a lot of weapons, and we don’t expect him to dominate every game, but we figured we’d see more production than this from one of the NFL’s preeminent backfield weapons. All the complaining aside, if Sproles can score on Monday, we’ll feel validated.

Mike Wallace, WR, Miami Dolphins: After serving mostly as a decoy in the team’s opening game, Wallace has had some ups and downs. He posted 115 yards and a score in Week 2, but hauled in only two grabs for 22 yards in Week 3. So far, he’s been outshined by the likes of Brian Hartline and Charles Clay, whether by design or just dumb luck. We’d still roll with Wallace here, and just cross your fingers that he has another dominant outing.

Jimmy Graham, TE, New Orleans Saints: The Saints passing game has been all Graham so far. The top fantasy TE in the league leads the team with 23 receptions for 358 yards and four touchdowns. The chemistry he has with Brees is readily evident, and it’s really paid off for fantasy owners who had to reach (likely into the second round) to get him during the draft. Graham has scored in every game so far, and we doubt this one will be any different. He’s a no-brainer start each and every week.

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