NFL Fantasy Football Week 3: Start or Sit?
It’s Thursday night, which means that it’s time to start making Week 3 decisions about who to start and sit on your 2013 fantasy football team. Do you capitalize on potentially gaudy shootouts like the Detroit Lions and Washington Redskins? Is there value to be found in relatively lackluster fantasy contests like Chicago at Pittsburgh? And will potential blowouts like the Jaguars at Seahawks create fantasy booms or busts?
We at SidelineMOB will do our best every week to help you figure out who to start and sit on your fantasy football squads. In an effort to keep our track record visible and honest, we’ll be listing out the results of each fantasy player we’ve chosen the week before. As you’ll see, our Week 2 picks hit far more often than they missed.
There are a bunch of fantasy question marks heading into this week’s action. Will Packers RB Eddie Lacy and Texans WR Andre Johnson recover from Week 2 concussions in time to see significant game action? Will Ray Rice’s injured leg be ready to go? Will backups like Jacquizz Rodgers in Atlanta post major numbers in the wake of other player’s absences?
Let’s take a look at our top 5 starting QBs, RBs, and WRs, and well as potential busts and sleepers for Week 3 in the NFL for your fantasy football squads.
Fantasy football week 3: top 5 QBs
Last week’s top 5 QB picks: Peyton Manning (307 yds, 2 TD); Matt Ryan (374 yds, 2 TD); Aaron Rodgers (480 yds, 4 TD); Cam Newton (229 yds, 2 TD, 1 INT); Michael Vick (428 yds, 2 TD, 34 rush yds, 1 TD)
1. Peyton Manning, Denver Broncos (vs. Oakland): The only thing that concerns us about Manning against the Raiders is if Denver goes up by so much that they take their foot off the gas in the 3rd quarter. Still, that’s not in the DNA of this Denver offense; until someone can slow them down, Peyton has to be considered the elite fantasy QB in the NFL.
2. Tony Romo, Dallas Cowboys (vs. St. Louis): Last time these two teams met, it was DeMarco Murray having a field day for the Cowboys. This time, Tony Romo should have ample opportunity to carve up the league’s 27th-ranked pass defense at home. Look for Romo to toss 3 touchdowns and approach 300 yards.
3. Colin Kaepernick, San Francisco 49ers (vs. Indianapolis): Any team coached by Jim Harbaugh that gets embarrassed like they did vs. Seattle last week is going to play angry. Kaepernick’s dual-threat attack suits itself perfectly against the porous run defense of the Colts, and Kap will be playing like a man on a mission at home Week 3. Don’t be surprised if he puts up over 75 yards rushing on top of passing totals.
4. Matthew Stafford, Detroit Lions (@ Washington): The Redskins defense is bad. Surprisingly bad – to the tune of 10.2 yards allowed per completion. With the long-bomb threats boasted by the Lions offense, Stafford is a threat to surpass 350 yards this week.
5. Eli Manning, NY Giants (@ Carolina): Call this having a case of the “must-win” virus. The Giants have been thoroughly embarrassed for 2 weeks, and Eli has looked particularly turnover-prone in each contest. This kind of pick ‘em road game is the type the Giants have won for years now, and the younger Manning brother should come ready to play.
Fantasy football week 3: top 5 RBs
1. Marshawn Lynch, Seattle Seahawks (vs. Jacksonville): Sweet mammy pajamy, this one has explosion written all over it. Seattle, at home, with the loudest crowd in history, against the 31st-ranked rush defense of the Jaguars? Coming off a 3 TD performance against San Francisco, Beastmode is licking his chops.
2. Adrian Peterson, Minnesota Vikings (vs. Cleveland): We don’t care that Cleveland ranks 4th against the run so far this season. There’s so much turmoil surrounding the Browns now, we don’t trust anything they do. That, and it’s really hard for us to forget this epic, soul-crushing stiff arm and TD that Peterson dropped on the Browns a few seasons ago.
3. Chris Johnson, Tennessee Titans (vs. San Diego): Every year, CJ2K frustrates his fantasy owners for a few weeks, who subsequently bench him for his monster breakout game. Don’t bench him this week – not at home against a Chargers rush defense that allows 4.7 yards per carry.
4. Alfred Morris, Washington Redskins (vs. Detroit): The Lions’ heavy pass rush leaves some holes in their rush defense, which Morris hopes to exploit this weekend. With RG3 struggling in the first half, don’t be surprised if Mike Shanahan puts an increased emphasis on the run game to start this week’s tilt against Detroit.
5. Doug Martin, Tampa Bay Buccaneers (@ New England): Muscle Hamster put up 65 yards and a TD against a good Jets front seven, and then 144 rush yards vs. the Saints. The Patriots defense has given up over 130 yards per game on the ground. Consider Martin a solid RB1 heading into Week 3.
Fantasy football week 2: top 5 WRs
1. Calvin Johnson, Detroit Lions (@ Washington): Look, sometimes it’s about being obvious. The best WR in the league goes up against the team currently allowing the highest QB rating and yards-per-completion average to its opponents. No-brainer.
2. A.J. Green, Cincinnati Bengals (vs. Green Bay): With the Packers giving up 9.3 yards per completion, Green could have a monster bounce-back fantasy outing against Green Bay at home.
3. Marques Colston, New Orleans Saints (vs. Arizona): The Cardinals have allowed a nearly 69% completion rate to opposing passers and have only registered 1 sack this season. If Drew Brees has that kind of time to look deep, Colston could be off to the races more than once in this game.
4. Hakeem Nicks, NY Giants (@ Carolina): The last time Hakeem Nicks played against the Carolina Panthers was Sept. 12, 2010. In that game, he had 4 catches for 75 yards… and 3 touchdowns. The Panthers secondary hasn’t gotten any better (or taller) since.
5. Mike Wallace, Miami Dolphins (vs. Atlanta): The Dolphins may not win this game, but Wallace could potentially feast on an Atlanta secondary currently ranked 29th in the NFL, and one which made Sam Bradford look like a Pro Bowler at times last week.
Fantasy football week 2: top 5 bust alert
1. Trent Richardson, Indianapolis Colts (@ San Francisco): Congratulations T-Rich, you move from the doghouse to a playoff contender. You also move from a fantasy matchup against the lackluster Vikings rush D to an angry 49ers defense. Enjoy that.
2. Carson Palmer, Arizona Cardinals (@ New Orleans): Surprising as it may sound, the Saints are giving up under 200 pass yards a game – and that’s against Matt Ryan and Josh Freeman.
3. C.J. Spiller, Buffalo Bills (@ NY Jets): Spiller faces a tough matchup against a Jets defense that ranks 5th in the NFL in rush defense. If Doug Martin and Stevan Ridley had a tough time getting going against Gang Green, Spiller is likely to struggle as well.
4. Darren McFadden, Oakland Raiders (@ Denver): The Broncos currently rank as the NFL’s top rush defense, having bottled up Ray Rice and David Wilson in consecutive weeks.
5. Jay Cutler, Chicago Bears (@ Pittsburgh): Not only will the Steelers defense be amped up to avoid starting 0-3 at home, they’re already a top 10 pass defense with ball-hawking secondary playmakers.
Fantasy football week 2: top 5 sleepers alert
Last week’s top 5 sleeper picks: Jordan Cameron (95 yds); Michael Floyd (22 yds); Tavon Austin (47 yds, 2 TD); Leonard Hankerson (35 yds); Ben Tate (101 total yds)
1. Jacquizz Rodgers, Atlanta Falcons (@ Miami): With Steven Jackson out 2-4 weeks, this is Rodgers’ time to assert himself for the Falcons. He could easily see 15-20 touches.
2. Ryan Tannehill, Miami Dolphins (vs. Atlanta): Yep, back-to-back sleeper picks for this game. Is it really fair to call Tannehill a sleeper with the 12th-most passing yards in the NFL? All he needs to do is find the end zone; the Falcons have allowed 5 pass TDs in 2 games this year.
3. Kenbrell Thompkins, New England Patriots (vs. Tampa Bay): Thompkins has caught just 6 of his 21 targets from Tom Brady. While that’s not altogether positive, it’s a sign Brady is desperately trying to create chemistry with Thompkins. Keep him on your watch list, and flex him if your options are limited.
4. Chris Ivory, NY Jets (vs. Buffalo): The Bills’ defensive weakness is against the run, and fellow Jets RB Bilal Powell missed practice Wednesday with an undisclosed illness.
5. Austin Pettis, St. Louis Rams (@ Dallas): Quick, who has the 2nd-most targets of any Rams receiver behind Tavon Austin? Nope, not Chris Givens. Not Jared Cook. It’s Austin Pettis – and after a very nice 78 yard, 1 TD performance vs. Atlanta, Sam Bradford will look his way again.
- Fantasy Football: Week 3 Staff Must Start, Must Sit and Sleeper Picks (musketfire.com)
- Fantasy football week 3 rankings: Quarterbacks (examiner.com)
- Sit/start fantasy football advice: Which Lions to play in Week 3 (prideofdetroit.com)
- Week 3 Fantasy Football Ranking Roundup (redskins.com)