There's nothing good about the fact that D.J. Chark has been ruled out for Thursday Night Football. This game profiles as a shootout and Chark was in line for a solid performance. But if there is a silver lining to the situation it's that a pair of his teammates are under-rostered and should be excellent Fantasy replacements in Week 3.
Rookie Laviska Shenault has received more press than Keelan Cole, but they're both worthwhile starts this week. Shenault's role in the passing game should grow without Chark, and the Jaguars like to use him for a handful of running plays as well. Since he's a rookie, we expect his role to grow as the season goes on, but Week 3 he may see a surprisingly early boost in volume. It wouldn't be that surprising to see the Jaguars use him in a trick play in his first prime-time game either.
Cole is the more unsung of the two right now, but he's also been the most productive Jaguars receiver so far this season. He leads the team in targets, receptions, and receiving touchdowns, and he's the only player on the team besides D.J. Chark with more than 100 receiving yards through two weeks. Cole has been efficient for most of his career, and he should see a season-high in targets on Thursday night.
I'd be happy starting either, but I slightly prefer Shenault in non-PPR and Cole where catches count. Both could give you more than what you've gotten from Chark on a per-game basis this season. And if you're really desperate, Chris Conley should play most of Chark's snaps and should see a deep target or two.
Week 3 WR Preview
The following players are not being projected to play Week 3 at this time. Here's what it means:
NYG N.Y. Giants • #87
Age: 27 • Experience: 5 yrs.
This could help Darius Slayton, but it's hard to trust any Giants right now.
IND Indianapolis • #15
Age: 23 • Experience: 2 yrs.
The Colts may not throw enough against the Jets for this to matter.
KC Kansas City • #14
Age: 27 • Experience: 7 yrs.
This is why you stashed Mecole Hardman.. Let's see if it pays off.
NYJ N.Y. Jets • #19
Age: 27 • Experience: 6 yrs.
Braxton Berrios and Chris Hogan are deep flexes with all the Jets starting wide receivers out.
DEN Denver • #14
Age: 25 • Experience: 3 yrs.
Jerry Jeudy will be the No. 1 for the Broncos, but it's a tough matchup against Tampa Bay.
Numbers to Know
- 732 -- Calvin Ridley has 732 receiving yards in the eight games he's played since the Falcons traded Mohamed Sanu. He's a bona fide No. 1 receiver in Fantasy.
- 31.5% -- Nearly a third of Ben Roethlisberger's passes have gone to Diontae Johnson. That makes him must-start but could be a problem for JuJu Smith-Schuster.
- 111 -- Terry McLaurin leads receivers with 111 yards after reception.
- 17.9 -- Michael Gallup has more air yards per target than any receiver, minimum 10 targets. He's more of a flex due to CeeDee Lamb, but he still has boom potential.
- 5 -- Laviska Shenault had five carries in Week 2 for 37 yards. His unique usage makes him an interesting flex, better in non-PPR.
- 0 -- Will Fuller played 63% of the Texans offensive snaps in Week 1 and somehow saw zero targets. Watch their injury report to see if his hamstring tweak is more serious than reported.
Matchups that matter
On Thursday's episode of the Fantasy Football Today podcast, we started breaking down Week 3's matchups, making start and sit calls for each game. Subscribe at Apple, Spotify, or wherever you get your podcasts:
Waiver Wire Targets
Keelan Cole WR
JAC Jacksonville • #84
Age: 27 • Experience: 4 yrs.
Cole is available almost everywhere despite the fact that he has 50% more targets than any other Jacksonville receiver. It was surprising this offseason when Jacksonville brought Cole back, but he's showing why early in the season. You may not get another chance to add him after he faces the Dolphins in primetime.
N'Keal Harry WR
NE New England • #15
Age: 22 • Experience: 2 yrs.
Harry has as many targets as Julian Edelman on the season and Cam Newton has shown us enough to believe there can be two Fantasy viable targets in this offense. He's a solid flex against the Raiders in Week 3.
NYJ N.Y. Jets • #10
Age: 25 • Experience: 3 yrs.
The Jets look like they'll be without all their top receivers again in Week 3. That puts Berrios and Chris Hogan in play as deep flexes. San Francisco's defense is banged up and the Jets will be playing from behind. This isn't pretty, but they're not bad desperation plays either.
K.J. Hamler WR
DEN Denver • #13
Age: 21 • Experience: Rookie
I don't want to start Hamler in Week 3 with a backup quarterback and Tampa Bay on the schedule, but I definitely want to stash him. Hamler played 62% of the offensive snaps and saw seven targets in his Week 2 debut against the Steelers. He and Jerry Jeudy could be very solid starting options later in the season.
D.J. Moore WR
CAR Carolina • #12
Age: 23 • Experience: 3 yrs.
This is a difficult matchup, but so was Week 2 against Tampa Bay. Moore is a true No. 1 receiver and now that Christian Mccaffrey is out I expect his target share to be locked in at close to 30%. Carolina won't have much success running against the Chargers, which means the pass volume will be high as well. Expect double-digit targets, triple-digit yardage, and Moore's first touchdown of the season.
A.J. Green WR
CIN Cincinnati • #18
Age: 32 • Experience: 10 yrs.
Yeah, Green has been a whole lotta "almost" so far this season. It hasn't been pretty. I just can't stay away from 11 targets per game at his price point. The Bengals should be chasing points again against Philadelphia, which should mean another 40-plus pass attempts for Joe Burrow.
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 out-performed experts big-time last season.