Week 3 can be a dangerous time in Fantasy Football. This is the point in the year when we start to believe we may actually know something. We see evidence piling up in one direction or the other and we're left with a choice; stand by our preseason beliefs or (over?)adjust based on three games worth of information.
There's no steadfast rule about when we have enough information to change our minds. Every situation is unique. There are some struggling stars you should cut bait with. There are others you should try to buy low. And that's where we'll start with this week's Believe It or Not.
Now is the time to buy low on the Houston Texans.
While everyone enjoys a good BIll O'Brien jab, it's really quite unfair what the schedule-makers did to Houston. They started out with a road game against the defending world champions. Then they played Baltimore, followed by a road trip to Pittsburgh. It's no wonder Deshaun Watson is currently the No. 18 quarterback in Fantasy, just behind Mitchell Trubisky and just ahead of Ryan Fitzpatrick. Things get a little easier in Week 4 with a home game against the Vikings. You should acquire Watson and the rest of the Texans before their get-right game.
Verdict: Believe it.
The Chiefs, Ravens and Steelers have eight wins and zero losses. Heading into Monday night's game, they've combined to allow 17.1 points per game. No team has scored more than 21 points against any of them. Despite these difficult matchups, Watson still has scored 20 Fantasy points in two of three starts and has matched his career-best at 8.3 yards per attempt. He was a consensus top-six quarterback coming into 2020 and nothing (well maybe Josh Allen) should have changed your mind about that.
As for the rest of the Texans, I'd still buy Will Fuller as a high-end No. 2 receiver whenever he's healthy, and David Johnson's 14 touches per game should make him a respectable No. 2 running back. While they're both trade targets, Brandin Cooks may be someone you can buy low off the waiver wire. The way the Vikings have struggled with the deep ball, he's not a bad boom-or-bust flex this week.
It's been a terribly difficult start to the season for the Texans, but that should start to change in Week 4.
That escalated quickly. Henderson followed up his breakout Week 2 performance with a second-straight 120-yards (and a score) game. He now leads Rams' running backs in carries, rushing yards and total yards. He also has as many scores as goal-line back Malcolm Brown. Cam Akers' rib injury opened the door for Henderson, and the second-year back may have locked it behind him.
Verdict: Believe it.
It seems people forget just how ballyhooed Henderson was a year ago. He was selected 70th overall in 2019, that's just 18 spots lower than the Rams took Akers in 2020. And Henderson was an absolute maniac in college, averaging 8.2 yards per carry, 12.0 yards per reception and scoring 25 touchdowns in his final year at Memphis. While Henderson did look lost as a rookie, that shouldn't matter after the way he's looked the first two games.
The other surprising development with the Rams run game is how often they're doing it, and how much better the blocking is. Henderson is averaging over 3 yards per rush before contact. The only other back who can say that is Raheem Mostert. Maybe even more surprising is the fact that the Rams lead the league with 111 rush attempts.
For now Henderson looks like the lead guy on a run-heavy team that is above average at running the ball. And the way he's playing I'd bet against Akers or Brown taking that role from him.
A.J. Green and T.Y. Hilton are sits until further notice.
Now was that frustrating. A.J. Green came into Week 3 with 22 targets in two games. He saw three in regulation against the Eagles. T.Y. Hilton faced his third consecutive good matchup and failed to reach double digit Fantasy points for the third consecutive week. Whatever reason you had for optimism before Week 3, you can't have any now. Until Green or Hilton do something positive, they should remain on your bench.
Verdict: Don't Believe it
This might be as simple as "man, A.J. Green gets to play Jacksonville this week". While I certainly wouldn't tell anyone they must start Green or Hilton, there are some mitigating circumstances that have me feeling slightly better than you might believe I would. For Green, it's the fact that he played his highest snap share yet in Week 3, and caught 83% of his targets despite the fact he was going up against Darius Slay, who has been very good in 2020. For Hilton, it's the fact that his defense scored two touchdowns and so he barely saw the field in the second half, which makes his three-for-52 seem more acceptable.
You certainly don't have to start Green or Hilton in Week 4, but they aren't must-sits either. And if somebody wants to give one of them away for a bench player, I'd be willing to entertain that as well.
Gallup was an absolute monster in Week 3 with six catches for 138 yards and a score. That topped his total catches, yards and scores in the first two weeks combined. Lamb regressed from his 106-yard performance in Week 2, catching five of six targets for 65 yards. The rookie still has not found the end zone. He was started in nearly as many leagues as Gallup. It sure doesn't seem like either of these two Cowboys receivers are going to be consistent performers for your Fantasy team.
Verdict: Believe it
You would think with Dak Prescott throwing a league-leading 143 targets there would be plenty to go around. There is, it's just that Lamb and Gallup haven't been second in line. Amari Cooper has at least nine targets in every game, and a 24.4% target share. That's fine for Gallup and Lamb, but not when Ezekiel Elliott and Dalton Schultz have combined to account for 30% of the team's targets. Even that could be palatable if the targets were more consolidated, but Cedrick Wilson saw seven targets in Week 3 and guys like Tony Pollard and Blake Bell are seeing a couple each week.
This isn't quite the same Cowboys offensive game plan we saw in 2019. It's less consolidated so far and less aggressive. Dak Prescott's average depth of target has dropped back down below 8 (it was 9.3 in 2019). Those factors likely mean that Gallup and Lamb will be boom-or-bust No. 3 receivers if everyone stays healthy. For that reason, I'd be looking to move Gallup after his big week.
Rex Burkhead is a must-add and a start in Week 4.
Burkhead led the Patriots with 10 targets on Sunday and scored three touchdowns against the Raiders. He now has 11 catches in his past two games and looks firmly positioned as the red zone back in a very good Patriots offense. He's also rostered in just 7% of leagues and faces the Chiefs in Week 4. Add him and start him with confidence in Week 4.
Verdict: Don't believe it.
OK, you should add Burkhead. And there's a possibility you may need to start him. But it's only a possibility and it's not really dependent on Burkhead. In the first two weeks of the season, Burkhead had 13 carries for 34 yards. Sony Michel has twice as many rushing yards for the season, and Cam Newton is the only true goal line back in New England. If Damien Harris and James White remain out, you could possibly use Burkhead as a flex because of his presumed role in the passing game, but with no real confidence. Buurkhead is a very solid player who is able to fill multiple roles for New England, but his role will not be consistent, especially as the Patriots get healthier.