The total target numbers for the first 4 weeks are starting to round out the variations and give us a better view of who the "guys" will be. So let's see what is up in Targetville, U.S.A.
The numbers by each name are targets for week 4 and then in the parenthesis are the total year to date targets.
All snap count data comes from our friends over at Pro Football Focus.
Larry Fitzgerald - 11 (35), Early Doucet - 6 (21), Todd Heap - 6 (20), Andre Roberts - 0 (17), Beanie Wells - 2 (8), Jeff King - 1 (6), Anthony Sherman - 2 (4), LaRod Stephens-Howling - 1 (2)
The running attack of Beanie Wells was the story of this game, but we can glean a little from the target numbers. First off, the break out of Andre Roberts isn't happening. Early Doucet beat him in targets 6-0. Doucet would be the speculative add in deeper leagues, but he’s still not getting enough work to be consistent. Todd Heap once again had a decent amount of looks and is worth monitoring as he becomes a part of the regular game plan. Alfonso Smith didn't see much work, but both of his carries were in the red zone and he averaged 8 yards a tote. He is the handcuff for Wells.
Roddy White - 11 (45), Julio Jones - 17 (37), Tony Gonzalez - 9 (33), Harry Douglas - 0 (13), Jacquizz Rodgers - 1 (9), Michael Turner - 2 (7), Ovie Mughelli - 1 (3), Michael Palmer - 1 (2)
He didn't get into the end zone, but this was Julio Jones' "break out" game with 17 targets to Roddy White's 11. Those numbers will fluctuate based on coverage, but don't be surprised when Jones leads in target numbers off and on this season. There's a very good chance he stays a solid WR2. Gonzo continues to get his targets even while Jones and White get theirs. His incredible body control and hands (or hand) allow him to get the ball even though he can’t separate like he used to.
Ed Dickson - 12 (32), Anquan Boldin - 2 (30), Ray Rice - 5 (25), Torrey Smith - 6 (15), Vonta Leach - 3 (11), Dennis Pitta - 1 (7), Ricky Williams - 1 (4), LaQuan Williams - 1 (4)
It would be nice if Ed Dickson could start catching some of these targets. He's ranked 4th in targets for tight ends with 32, but 13th in receptions. That 50 percent catch rate is ranked so low I don't want to talk about it. His misses aren't all his fault of course, but that percentage going to have to go up before he’s a top 10 fantasy tight end like his targets indicate.
Boldin was obviously Revis'd but good. The passing game as a whole reeked. Just hold your nose and move on.
Stevie Johnson - 6 (36), David Nelson - 3 (30), Donald Jones - 8 (29), Fred Jackson - 8 (17), Scott Chandler - 2 (14), Brad Smith - 4 (5), C.J. Spiller - 1 (4), Naaman Roosevelt - 1 (2)
The Bengals pass defense slowed down the hot Bills offense and kept most of their playmakers in check. David Nelson only saw 3 targets to Donald Jones' 8. Those two need a clicking offense to both be serviceable. It will be difficult to predict which one will see the targets on any given game day. This game is the downside of Scott Chandler. He sees so few targets that he must get into the end zone to be worthwhile. He's not worthwhile.
C.J. Spiller had only 4 looks. I only bring him up because of his name. He’s of no use in fantasy right now. Unlike Fred Jackson who gets the Eagles anemic rush defense at home in week 5. That smells like victory.
Steve Smith - 10 (41), Greg Olsen - 7 (27), Legedu Naanee - 11 (25), Jeremy Shockey - 5 (20), Jonathan Stewart - 4 (18), Brandon LaFell - 6 (16), DeAngelo Williams - 1 (10)
The 11 targets for Legedu Naanee just shows you how badly the Panthers need Brandon LaFell to step up. Three of those targets were in the red zone and he leads the team with 9 on the season, but has zero touchdowns. If he were a better receiver I'd say grab him, but it's hard to see these target numbers continuing with such poor production. Greg Olsen now has 2 touchdowns and is second on the team with 27 targets. He should continue that pace and is worth a fantasy roster spot with Cam Newton at the helm.
Jonathan Stewart was on the field for 45 plays to DeAngelo Williams' 27 and they both had 12 looks with Stewart getting 2 red zone looks to Williams' 1. The fact that Cam Newton is the goal line back does limit both of their upside (Stewart's more since he'd probably be the goal line back) but with Stewart acting as the passing down back, he is the guy I want in this race.
Matt Forte - 5 (33), Johnny Knox - 4 (23), Devin Hester - 2 (21), Dane Sanzenbacher - 2 (17), Roy Williams - 1 (9), Kellen Davis - 1 (9), Sam Hurd - 2 (6)
Twelve total targets for guys not named Matt Forte tell you all you need to know there. Until the offensive line and/or a receiver steps up, there isn't going to be much fantasy production non-Forte-wise.