It's time to start thinking about who you're going to start in Week 3.
Later on today, I'll send over Jamey Eisenberg's Start 'Em & Sit 'Em picks, and tomorrow morning, we'll have Dave Richard's Week 3 preview column, with all of his start and sit calls. Before we get to all that, I've got my Week 3 Stock Watch here for you, with five players to buy and five to sell if you're looking to make a trade -- and make sure you've got Dave's Trade Values Chart handy to make sure you're making a smart move.
After that, let's get acquainted with the state of each position for this week, with Heath Cummings' position previews. I've got the latest injury news from each position, and then Heath gives you everything else you need to know.
And, in case you missed it yesterday, check out my rankings below with a whole bunch of comments on why I like or dislike certain players this week that I compiled while going through the process of ranking them:
Hopefully that helps you get an understanding of what to expect for this week. Here's what the rest of today's newsletter has in store to help you get ready for Week 3:
- 📈Week 3 Stock Watch📉
- 🔍Week 3 Position Previews
Looking to make a trade? You know your team a little bit, and you might know where your weak points are already. Or, you might know how to take advantage of someone else's slow start. Make sure you've got your bearings before you go make offers with the help of Dave Richard's Trade Values Chart, and here are five players whose stock I'm buying and five I'm selling ahead of Week 3.
Five to buy
Here are five big performers from Week 1 I'm buying into moving forward. Things are only going to get better from here.
You don't always have to sell high or buy low. Sometimes a hot start is just the beginning of something big, and there's value in trying to buy those situations before their perceived value catches up.
- Rondale Moore -- The Cardinals are making a point of getting Moore involved early and often, to the point where he actually leads the team in targets despite being fourth among wide receivers in routes and snaps. On the one hand, you could argue that means the touches are likely to regress. But I think it's much more likely they simply get their dynamic new playmaker on the field more often. I'm buying in on his fast start.
- Mike Williams -- I'm also buying Williams, who might actually be the perfect buy-high candidate. He's an older player who has disappointed us in the past, so there are surely players who are extremely skeptical of his hot start and would like to get out before the bottom falls out. But where Williams has primarily been used as a fairly-low volume deep threat in the past, he's been used in all levels of the field so far, with his lowest average depth of target ever-- befitting the Michael Thomas comparisons offensive coordinator Joe Lombardi made prior to the season. Williams has always had the talent, he's paired with a QB who may be making the leap to elite status, and he plays alongside Keenan Allen, one of the best WRs in football, creating plenty of one-on-one opportunities in the red zone so far. I'm buying Williams as a top-24 WR for the rest of the season. Maybe it's an overreaction, but it's one I'm willing to make.
But if you do want to buy low, here are three players I think have seen their worst days already:
- Justin Herbert -- The numbers don't necessarily reflect it, but Herbert is arguably playing even better than he did in 2020. His bad throw rate has dropped from 18% to 10.5%, while his on-target rate is up to 84.9%, from 76.5%; he's got a 70.5% completion percentage despite 8.1% of his throws being dropped so far. He's playing at a very high level, and if he can shore things up close to the end zone -- he's just 2 for 8 on plays inside the 10-yard line -- he's going to take off. That's part of the reason I'm buying Williams!
- Najee Harris -- Look, Pittsburgh's offense looks like a mess, especially the offensive line, and maybe that will just hold Harris back all season long. But he's played basically every snap, including passing downs, so far, and that's going to turn into production before long. Just think of Harris like David Montgomery last season -- volume is eventually going to win out. Don't overreact.
- Saquon Barkley -- If Barkley isn't at full strength yet, the Giants sure aren't using him that way. He played 84% of the snaps in Week 2 after seeing a big jump in snaps in the second half in Week 1, and now he's coming off extra rest and playing in Week 3 against an awful Falcons defense. The breakout is coming, so see if you can buy before it happens.
Five to sell
I'm not saying these guys won't be useful or good moving forward, but I think you can probably get more in return for them than you're likely to get from them:
- Rob Gronkowski -- Gronkowski is one of the 10 tight ends I think you can trust right now, and that's not nothing. He's played at least 81% of the snaps in each of the first two games and has been dominant in the red zone, catching four touchdowns. That's awesome, but he's not going to keep this kind of pace up all season. The Buccaneers have too many options in the passing game, and we've already seen Mike Evans and Antonio Brown take a back seat in one of the first two games. It'll be Gronkowski's turn eventually; he played 82% of the snaps in the Buccaneers playoff run last year and had more than one catch in just one of four games. He'll be more reliable than that, but if someone is viewing him as a potentially elite tight end, you're better off looking to move him. I would still take Logan Thomas and Noah Fant over him the rest of the way, in addition to the more obvious names.
- Michael Pittman -- Carson Wentz's ankle injuries came at an especially bad time for Pittman, who is likely to be added in a lot of leagues after his eight-catch, 123-yard performance in Week 2. There are things to like about Pittman -- he's big and fast and has a huge opportunity with the Colts missing T.Y. Hilton -- but I'm not convinced he's good enough to earn targets like that on a consistent enough basis to be a difference maker for Fantasy even if Wentz stays healthy. He was outside of the top 100 in yards and targets per route run (min. 50 targets) as a rookie, and he garnered just four targets in Week 1 despite the Colts trailing for much of the game. He'll be more involved than that, but I would bet he's more likely to be a WR4 for Fantasy than anything else.
- Damien Harris -- It wouldn't be right to say we've seen something like a best-case scenario for Harris through two games, but we've seen a sign of how narrow his path to being a true difference maker is for Fantasy. In Week 1, he rushed for 100 yards and had two catches for 17 yards, but finished with just 11.7 PPR points thanks to a fumble; in Week 2, he finished with 13.4 points thanks to a touchdown. He's a pretty safe bet for between six and 14 points most weeks thanks to his workload, and there's nothing wrong with that. It's nice to have around. But it isn't doing much to give you a real edge on the competition. Shop him before he has a game that hits the lower-end of that range.
Sometimes, getting off a sinking ship is better than hoping they'll be able to fix the breach in the hull. I'm willing to sell these two on name value I don't think they'll live up to:
- Myles Gaskin -- Gaskin is the lead back for the Dolphins still, but his role has clearly diminished from last season. In 2020, he played at least 65% of the snaps in every game he played and averaged 14.2 carries and 4.7 targets per game; through two weeks the targets are still there, but he has just 14 carries total while topping out at 61% of the snaps. Roles can shift, but in this case, this largely fits with how Brian Flores described how he wanted to use his backs in the preseason, with Malcolm Brown and Salvon Ahmed seeing 21 combined touches to Gaskin's 23. I'm not sure things are going to change on that front for Gaskin, and I'm not sure he's more than a fringe starter if he isn't getting a ton of volume.
- Robby Anderson -- Anderson is still clearly a big part of this passing game, but his role does appear to have shifted quite a bit since last season. Whereas he was the No. 1 -- or at least 1a -- option last season, his target share is down to just 12.3% through two games, behind both Christian McCaffrey and D.J. Moore and running even with rookie Terrace Marshall. And, while Moore has been used more as a the do-it-all, alpha-type wide receiver so far, Anderson has largely been used as a deep threat, with an average depth of target on his nine passes of 21.0 yards down the field. Anderson can still be productive in that role -- or they could go back to using him like they did last season -- but with how well they are moving the ball right now, there doesn't seem to be much reason to change things up. Which could make him a boom-or-bust WR3/Flex the rest of the way. Which is what he was for most of his time in New York.
🔍Week 3 Position Previews
Every Tuesday, Heath Cummings previews each position, providing injury insights, key stats to know, the best waiver-wire adds, DFS targets, and more for quarterback, running back, wide receiver, and tight end. Here's a brief rundown of each position, along with some key details you need to know about and our expert consensus top-12 rankings before you go read Heath's full breakdowns:
- Injuries to know: Carson Wentz (ankles) -- Wentz hasn't been ruled out, but he was moving around the team facility on a scooter Tuesday and seems like a long shot to play. Because, if you look closely, that is ankles -- plural ... Andy Dalton (knee) -- Dalton is being called week to week right now, which makes it seem quite likely that Justin Fields will make his first NFL start Sunday against the Browns. I'm not willing to start him right away in one-QB leagues, but I want to make sure he's not on waivers, because he could immediately become a must-start player thanks to his rushing ability. Think Jalen Hurts ... Tua Tagovailoa (ribs) -- With Tagovailoa, it is apparently just a bruise, so it's more about pain tolerance than any risk that he'll suffer a more serious injury. That doesn't mean he'll definitely play, but don't pencil Jacoby Brissett in as the starter yet. ... Tyrod Taylor (hamstring) -- Taylor has been placed on IR and will miss at least three games as a result of this injury, and possibly longer. Rookie Davis Mills will start in Taylor's place Sunday against the Panthers, and while he should be added in two-QB or SuperFlex leagues, it's hard to envision starting him in either format unless you are truly desperate. That Panthers DST looks mighty fine for this week, however ... Ben Roethlisberger (pectoral) -- We just learned about this injury Tuesday, and it's not clear what the risk of him sitting out Sunday's game against the Bengals is right now. Steelers coach Mike Tomlin did tell reporters Roethlisberger will probably not practice as normal this week. It's not clear right now whether Mason Rudolph would actually be a downgrade from the version of Roethlisberger we've seen since the second-half of last season.
- Number to know: 10.0 -- "Intended air yards per pass attempt for Teddy Bridgewater this season. That's way higher than what we've seen from him in the past."
- Matchup that matters: Daniel Jones vs. ATL
- Top streamer: "Daniel Jones. My initial projections have Jones at QB6 this week. I pulled him back in the rankings to QB11, but it's hard to justify any more. He's currently QB8 for the season and he's facing a Falcons defense that has surrendered the most Fantasy points to quarterbacks through the first two weeks of the season. I know it's tough to trust him, but this is about as good of a setup as you could ask for from a streamer."
Consensus Expert Top 12
- Patrick Mahomes
- Kyler Murray
- Dak Prescott
- Josh Allen
- Tom Brady
- Russell Wilson
- Justin Herbert
- Lamar Jackson
- Jalen Hurts
- Matthew Stafford
- Aaron Rodgers
- Ryan Tannehill
- Injuries to know: Josh Jacobs (toe/ankle) -- Jon Gruden called Jacobs "very questionable" for Week 3, so don't expect him to play. Kenyan Drake had seven rushes and six targets in Week 2, while Peyton Barber had 13 carries; Drake is the guy you want to start if you need someone here against Miami ... Darrell Henderson (ribs) -- Henderson has a rib cartilage injury, and his status for Week 3 against the Buccaneers is very much in question. We should have a better idea by Friday, but I'm expecting Sony Michel to get the start. He's more of an RB3 with a very tough matchup on the way, but he could be in the RB2 discussion if he starts beyond then ... Elijah Mitchell (shoulder)/Trey Sermon (concussion)/JaMycal Hasty (ankle) -- ... Okay, so Hasty is out for at least a week, but we don't know more about Mitchell or Sermon yet. This is a situation you just have to wait and see on -- the only other running back on the active roster right now is Jacques Patrick, a 24-year undrafted free agent who was on the Bengals practice squad and has no NFL careers in his career. But he might be the lead back for the 49ers this week against the Packers. Or, the lead back may not be on the roster right now.
- Number to know: 12 -- "Jonathan Taylor leads the NFL with 12 red-zone carries. The touchdowns will come."
- Matchup that matters: Ty'Son Williams @ DET
- Stash: "There's a week coming when Jeff Wilson leads this backfield again. With all these injuries, Wilson should be stashed whether you have an IR spot or not. "
- Top DFS play: Elijah Mitchell -- "Mitchell should top point-per-dollar rankings on just about every site this week. It's a tougher call in tournaments where roster rate matters, but I'd have Mitchell in 100% of my cash game lineups."
Consensus Expert Top 12
- Christian McCaffrey
- Dalvin Cook
- Alvin Kamara
- Joe Mixon
- Derrick Henry
- Nick Chubb
- Aaron Jones
- Chris Carson
- Jonathan Taylor
- Ezekiel Elliott
- Antonio Gibson
- Najee Harris
- Injuries to know: Amari Cooper (ribs) -- We don't know much about this injury right now, other than that the Cowboys are "hopeful" he'll be able to play. He does have an extra day to prepare for Monday's game against the Eagles, but it also means you may not know his status until lineups have locked for the rest of the games. Start making alternate plans now, and consider adding Jalen Reagor as an alternative for Monday night if you want to take the risk ... Diontae Johnson (knee) -- Steelers coach Mike Tomlin, when asked about Johnson's knee, said, "looking better, not to be confused with great." So, that's helpful. I'm not expecting him to play at this point, which would make JuJu Smith-Schuster and Chase Claypool viable No. 2 WR against the Bengals ... Jarvis Landry (knee)/Odell Beckham (knee) -- Landry was placed on IR and will miss at least the next three games, while Beckham has been inactive for the first two weeks of the season. I'm not expecting him to play, but even if he does you wouldn't be able to trust him until you see him play a significant role. The Browns threw just seven of 21 targets to wide receivers in Week 2, so I'm not sure you can trust anyone else there even with the injuries ... Laviska Shenault (shoulder) -- Here's an interesting one: Urban Meyer said Monday he expects Shenault to play in Week 3. We don't know whether Meyer is going to be one of those coaches who is generally pretty honest, too optimistic, or obfuscates so much that you can't take anything he says at face value. I'll take him at his word ... for now. .. Jamison Crowder (groin) -- It's hard to know what to make of Crowder right now. It was reported that he was expected to play in Week 2, so did he have a setback that caused him to be inactive, or was he just not ready to go? We'll watch this one throughout the week ... Tyrell Williams (concussion) -- Williams still has to clear the concussion protocol. He'll likely return to the regular WR rotation when healthy, though Quintez Cephus seems to have emerged as the top option there -- which has made him barely Fantasy relevant ... Nico Collins (shoulder)/Danny Amendola (hamstring) -- Collins was placed on IR with his injury, while Amendola's status remains up in the air. With Davis Mills at QB, it's unlikely anyone from this passing game other than Brandin Cooks will matter ... Parris Campbell (abdomen) -- Campbell was a late addition to the Week 2 injury report and was unable to play. Injuries have been a big issue for Campbell, and he'll have to prove himself healthy and productive before you buy in.
- Number to know: 4.4 -- "Average depth of target for Smith-Schuster, incredibly that number has gone down from 2020."
- Matchup that matters: Sterling Shepard vs. Atlanta
- Stash: "Rondale Moore in Week 2 was a great example of why you don't want to leave Terrace Marshall Jr. on your waiver wire. His breakout game could be just around the corner."
- Top DFS play: "Robert Woods is way too cheap because of his early season struggles. He had nine targets in Week 2 and I fully expect his bounce back is coming in what should be a shootout with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. They've allowed the second most Fantasy points to wide receivers with three different pass catchers topping 20 PPR Fantasy points against them in two games. "
Consensus Expert Top 12
- Tyreek Hill
- Davante Adams
- Stefon Diggs
- Calvin Ridley
- Amari Cooper
- DeAndre Hopkins
- DK Metcalf
- Justin Jefferson
- Cooper Kupp
- CeeDee Lamb
- Chris Godwin
- A.J. Brown
- Injuries to know: Evan Engram (calf) -- Engram has missed the first two games of the season, but the Giants are coming off a long layoff and opted not to put Engram on IR to start the season, so they assumed at that point, at least, he would miss fewer than three games. It'll be interesting to see if he does return and what that would mean for the team's receiving hierarchy, because he role could overlap with what Sterling Shepard has been doing ... James O'Shaughnessy (ankle) -- O'Shaughnessy was showing signs of life before the injury, but he's expected to miss 3-4 weeks now. Luke Farrell and Chris Manhertz will see a larger role, but neither has much Fantasy appeal.
- Number to know: 9 -- George Kittle has nine targets in two games. It's the first time since his rookie year that he's received less than 10 targets in a healthy two-game regular season stretch.
- Matchup that matters: Mark Andrews @ DET
- Streamer: "If you want to try to stream this week, Jack Doyle against the Titans is the best option and he's available basically everywhere. Doyle is second on the Colts with 12 targets in two games and his 85 receiving yards rank 10th at the position through two games. The Titans have a bad defense, though they have only given up one catch to tight ends so far."
- Top DFS play: "Darren Waller is still more than 10% cheaper than Travis Kelce on FanDuel and the difference between the two is not projected to be that big. In fact, I prefer Waller straight up this week where catches count."
Consensus Expert Top 12
- Travis Kelce
- Darren Waller
- T.J. Hockenson
- George Kittle
- Rob Gronkowski
- Mark Andrews
- Kyle Pitts
- Noah Fant
- Dallas Goedert
- Tyler Higbee
- Logan Thomas
- Jared Cook
So who should you start and sit this week? And which surprising quarterback could lead you to victory? Visit SportsLine now to get Week 3 rankings for every position, plus see which QB is going to come out of nowhere to crack the top 10, all from the model that has out-performed experts big-time.