Week 3 brings us the first London game of the season, a fresh matchup on Sunday Night Football, and way too many injury questions that hopefully we get answers to during the week. One thing to consider as you play on DRAFT is to give the multi-week bracket games a look. It's a fun way to start a streak and potentially win some big cash. Also look for overlay, as their $28, 2048 person bracket from last week didn't get 50% full. As a result, everyone got a bye to this week and a win this week guarantees your money back. On to the Draft Analysis.
H2H or 3-Person Contests
In Weeks 1-2, I was very adamant about drafting RB early. I'm not on that page this week. Yes, taking Le'Veon Bell early is fine, even if the Bears run D is decent. Bell is due to break out at some point. But, there is a lot of depth at the position for 2-3 team contests. I may focus on the Top 2 WR this week: Julio Jones and Antonio Brown. I am ranking Brown higher due to the fact that Julio should see Darius Slay, and Brown will be able to run through the Bears weak secondary. Chicago may do well at holding a team's top WR, but Brown is matchup proof and according to Pro Football Focus, has the 4th best WR/CB matchup this week.
After those two or three players, I can go a lot of directions. If wanting to go WR, it's hard to argue A.J. Green against the Packers secondary. Our matchup matrix has the Bengals WRs having the 4th best matchup of the week and Pro Football Focus has him as having the most favorable WR/CB matchup of the week. I don't even mind jumping to one of the Oakland receivers, but would prefer Amari Cooper. He's seeing more targets and seems due for a big game. If Josh Norman is on Michael Crabtree, Cooper becomes my 4th WR this week. Regardless, I think you can make a case for taking your second WR in the 4th or 5th round.
At Running Back, I like Devonta Freeman and Ty Montgomery in this range. Atlanta should be one of the higher scoring teams of the week and Detroit is susceptible to pass catching RBs, which Freeman is. For Montgomery, he's the workhorse in a Packer offense that has two receiver injuries in Randall Cobb and Jordy Nelson. Montgomery may not have a high yards per carry, but averaging five catches a game helps the value. Volume never hurts. Kareem Hunt and Melvin Gordon are viable here, as well as Jay Ajayi. Ajayi faces a Jets team that can't stop any back, giving up 5.1 yards per carry. Ajayi may see a lot of running in the second half to milk the clock.
For quarterbacks, I don't have much of a preference between Tom Brady and Aaron Rodgers. Though neither has a great matchup, I don't think you have to get too cute in H2H. In 3-man games, Matt Ryan or Derek Carr give you multiple touchdown upside.
4 and 6 Person Games
Quarterbacks are still worth waiting on here. Besides the four I mentioned, you can take a chance on Kirk Cousins, Matt Stafford, and Cam Newton if you want. Stafford is a good option in a high scoring game against a Falcons team allowing 287 yards passing a game. Not much of a run game there either. Cousins should be involved in a high scoring affair on Sunday night, but he hasn't been great this year. Newton has the Saints, with the matchup being great, but he hasn't looked all that spectacular yet.
At Running Back, I think it's time to believe in C.J. Anderson. He's had 20+ carries in each game so far and Buffalo allows 130 yards a game on the ground. Nothing wrong with Ezekiel Elliott or Dalvin Cook for pure touches. If you are playing before Sunday morning, Javorius Allen is in play against Jacksonville, in London. My favorite play here though is Christian McCaffrey. He is not ranked high in the DRAFT running backs, and he gets a favorable matchup against the Saints. McCaffrey should see some additional work with Greg Olsen out as well.
For Wide Receivers, it looks like Jordy Nelson is trending towards playing. As long as there's no setbacks, he's viable here. Another injured receiver that I like a bit if healthy is Odell Beckham Jr. On our matchup analysis in the premium content, the Eagles are allowing the most fantasy points to wide receivers. Last year, Beckham had the following performances against Philadelphia: 20 targets, 11 catches for 150 yards in the game at Philadelphia. In the other game, 10 targets, 4 catches for 46 yards and two touchdowns. He may go forgotten due to Giants offensive struggles and injury. Other receivers I can draft here: Davante Adams (if Nelson is limited), Mike Evans, Terrelle Pryor, and Golden Tate.
10 Person Leagues
The quarterbacks get risky here, but the matchups are favorable. Russell Wilson is usually a better late-season QB but Tennessee is not a scary matchup. Eli Manning has been awful, but he's had success recently vs the Eagles and their poor secondary. Andy Dalton hasn't thrown a TD this season, but the Packers are allowing over 325 yards a game passing. Finally, Dak Prescott should be in a good spot for a bounce back game this week, and Arizona does give up 300 yards a game through the air.
For running backs, if Jordan Howard is out for the Bears, Tarik Cohen is in play. Isaiah Crowell should have an easier time running against the Colts than he did vs the Steelers and Ravens. Seattle did allow over 100 yards on the ground last week, so Derrick Henry is in play if DeMarco Murray misses. Chris Carson for Seattle is one you could choose if you take a RB late.
Finally, the receiving options still are plentiful. Stefon Diggs is playable if Sam Bradford is playing. Kelvin Benjamin is now the clear #1 receiving option with Greg Olsen out and gets the Saints. If healthy, DeVante Parker should be used frequently against a Jets defense that can't stop anyone. Doug Baldwin has been quiet, but has a decent matchup and is still a top fantasy WR. Brandin Cooks is intriguing, depending on how many Patriots are out. Finally, I'm fading DeAndre Hopkins. Bill Belichick will make sure Hopkins doesn't beat them and a rookie QB vs NE isn't an ideal situation.
I think this is another week to get your running backs early, especially in 10-team leagues. There isn't much that excites me after the Top 10 or so. If you have a good feeling about the Giants, Seahawks, or Bengals, there are plays at QB/WR if you need them.
I will be joining Dan Clasgens and James Adams on the Saturday InsiderFootball show on Saturday at 12:35pm EST, going over this slate from a DRAFT perspective. Hopefully, I will have some clarity on some of these injuries. Don't' forget that Fantistics have listener league contests on Saturday. To see them, follow FantisticsRadio and you will see the $10, 10-man games appear in the lobby. I will jump in a couple of them throughout the day (skeeter1114). Good luck with all of your week three NFL contests, and let's hope the Rams/49ers offensive explosion on Thursday night leads to better offense across the league in Week 3.