Last updated: September 26th at 5:30pm ET
Team Totals: Giants 26, Redskins 23
Coach Jay Gruden seems stubbornly intent on starting Case Keenum even though he is battling a foot injury on a short week coming off a disastrous five-turnover Monday nighter where at times Keenum appeared to be playing for the other team. It’s fair to wonder if Keenum will make it through this Sunday’s game based on the injury and Dwayne Haskins’ inevitable insertion. Keenum’s best-case-scenario matchup does keep him playable in two-quarterback leagues and as a YOLO DFS-tournament option. The Giants’ barely-there defense has been rinsed for fantasy results of QB1 (Dak Prescott), QB7 (Josh Allen), and QB5 (Jameis Winston). … Clocked for a combined 52/253/2 (4.87 YPC) rushing line by Bills and Bucs backs in Weeks 2-3, the Giants offer a favorable Week 4 draw for Washington’s running game. Adrian Peterson is among fantasy’s most script-dependent commodities, however, and the Skins’ road-dog status gives him a worrisome floor. Chris Thompson easily leads Washington’s backfield in snaps (52%) – Peterson has played just 26% — and ranks fourth among NFL backs in catches (16). Peterson is a boom-bust, TD-dependent flex option. Thompson is a higher-floor but PPR-specific flex.
Keenum’s target distribution: Terry McLaurin 24; Thompson 23; Trey Quinn 20; Paul Richardson 19; Vernon Davis 15; Jeremy Sprinkle 6; Peterson 5. … Giants DC James Bettcher expressed confidence this week in Janoris Jenkins, which is good news for white-hot McLaurin. Over the past two weeks, Jenkins has conceded catches on 15-of-21 targets for 263 yards (12.5 YPA) and three touchdowns. Keep an eye on a hamstring injury that limited McLaurin in Thursday’s practice, but he will be a fringe WR1 play if healthy. Per Sports Info Solutions, McLaurin has been the intended target on six of the Redskins’ 20-plus-yard pass attempts this season. The Giants have allowed the NFL’s second-most yards (376) and touchdowns (4) on 20-plus-yard downfield throws. … NFL Films’ Greg Cosell this week described Giants No. 2 CB DeAndre Baker as “swimming.” Playing even worse than Jenkins, Baker has been beaten for completions on 13-of-17 targets for 296 yards (17.4 YPA) and two touchdowns this year. A bigger early-season factor than expected, Richardson makes for an enticing matchup-based WR3/flex and DFS-tournament punt. … Quinn is capable of making low-end PPR noise but still hasn’t cleared 50 yards in an NFL game. … Tight end streamers could do worse than Davis, whose production has been spotty but is playing 75% of Washington’s offensive snaps. The Giants are in danger of being without two of their top-three inside linebackers, Alec Ogletree due to a hamstring injury and Tae Davis due to a concussion.
In his first-ever home-game start, expect rookie sensation Daniel Jones to stay hot facing a pathetic Redskins defense playing on a short week that got rocked for QB8 (Carson Wentz) and QB3 (Dak Prescott) scores before resurrecting Mitchell Trubisky for last week’s QB13 result. Although Washington boasts dangerous outside rushers in Ryan Kerrigan and Montez Sweat, Jones went 12-of-16 for 192 yards (12.0 YPC) and a touchdown on pressured throws in a tough road matchup against a previously-stout Bucs defense in his debut. The Redskins also happen to have allowed the NFL’s fourth-most QB rushing yards, notable since Jones has been a dual-threat scrambler since college. … Saquon Barkley’s high ankle sprain forces 2017 fourth-round pick Wayne Gallman into lead-back work with UDFA Jonathan Hilliman behind him. A hard-charging, high-effort runner who lacks flash but can competently catch and block, Gallman is an almost entirely volume-based RB2/flex play favored at home in an offense that could push for 30 points. … Hilliman is worth adding in deep season-long and Dynasty leagues. An undrafted rookie who bounced from Boston College to Rutgers while battling injuries, Hilliman ran 4.43/4.49 at 5-foot-11, 216 during his Pro Day and caught 36 balls over the last two years.
Jones’ 2019 target distribution: Evan Engram and Sterling Shepard 9; Barkley, Russell Shepard, and Darius Slayton 5; Bennie Fowler 3; Gallman 2. … Jones nailed Engram on an 18-yard quick slant for his first-ever completion as the Giants’ starting quarterback, and the dynamic duo never looked back. On his third-quarter 75-yard catch-and-run touchdown, Engram reached 20.8 MPH, the fastest time recorded by any tight end this season (Next Gen Stats). Over the last two weeks, opponents are a perfect 10-of-10 passing for 74 yards and a touchdown when targeting tight ends against the Redskins. … Shepard ran a whopping 86% of his Week 3 routes in the slot, while Washington has been flamed for 19-of-24 passing for 195 yards and four touchdowns on slot targets this year. Jones’ superior willingness to push the ball downfield over Eli Manning provides a massive boost to Engram and Shepard’s stock. Shepard is a legit WR2 play in this cupcake draw. … Season-long leaguers should preemptively pick up Golden Tate anywhere he’s available on waivers. Tate will be back in Week 5, and his fantasy outlook has risen considerably with Eli benched. … I’m not sure he’ll get them with the Giants forcing Fowler and Cody Latimer down our throats, but Slayton warrants more snaps after delivering an early 46-yard catch, laying a big block on Engram’s 75-yard TD, and hauling in a 21-yard gain on last week’s game-winning drive. A fifth-round rookie, Slayton averaged a scorching 20.3 yards per catch at Auburn and runs 4.39 at 6-foot-1, 190. My pre-draft comparison for Slayton was Lions WR Marvin Jones, another day-three pick. Slayton plays on the perimeter, where Redskins CB Josh Norman has allowed a league-high four TDs.
Score Prediction: Giants 30, Redskins 21