Fantasy Football Week 3: Slow starts for Cam Newton, Isaiah Crowell not enough to keep them on the bench in Start 'Em and Sit 'Em
Your team hasn't performed the way you hoped it would so far. That's okay, because in Week 3, a lot of the most disappointing names are set to turn it around, Jamey Eisenberg says.
Injuries, injuries and more injuries. They ruin Fantasy teams.
And, unfortunately, we have plenty of them heading into Week 3.
We lost David Johnson (wrist) and Danny Woodhead (hamstring) to injured reserve after Week 1, and Andrew Luck (shoulder) has yet to even practice. And following Week 2, Greg Olsen (foot) and Corey Coleman (hand) were placed on IR.
John Brown (quad) isn't expected to play in Week 3, and Corey Davis (hamstring) was already ruled out. We also have other injuries to monitor, including Jordan Howard (shoulder), DeMarco Murray (hamstring), Rob Kelley (ribs), Terrance West (thigh), Rex Burkhead (ribs), Jordy Nelson (quad), Randall Cobb (shoulder), Chris Hogan (knee), Demaryius Thomas (hamstring), Rob Gronkowski (groin), Tyler Eifert (back), Jimmy Graham (ankle) and Jordan Reed (chest).
Is anyone healthy?
Winning your Fantasy league this season might be as much about surviving injuries as managing your roster, and we're still hoping for good news this week on the injury front. It appears like Howard, Kelley, Nelson and Gronkowski are going to play, but we might have to wait until Friday to know the status for them and everyone else.
We'll do our best to give you replacement options -- see Jay Cutler, Chris Carson and J.J. Nelson, among others -- and hopefully we don't have to deal with any more major injuries after Week 3.
Editor's Note: Projections are provided by CBS Sports and not Jamey Eisenberg.
Start of the Week
It's been a rough start for Cam Newton in 2017. Despite renewed optimism of a bounce-back campaign before the start of the season, it's been a terrible two weeks.
And Newton is looking like a bust for the second year in a row.
He had what appeared to be favorable matchups in Week 1 at San Francisco and Week 2 at Buffalo, but he's averaging just 13.5 Fantasy points over that span. He's passed for only 399 yards, two touchdowns and one interception on 59.6 percent completions, along with 30 rushing yards.
This is not what Fantasy owners had in mind, especially after the Panthers added new weapons in Christian McCaffrey and Curtis Samuel, as well as Kelvin Benjamin getting in shape in the preseason. And things potentially got worse for Newton in Week 2 against the Bills when Olsen broke his foot, which will keep him out for the next eight weeks.
So why is Newton listed here? Well, glad you asked. It's because of his matchup with the Saints.
We can certainly understand your reluctance to trust Newton this week given his performance through the first two games, and he's only scored 20 Fantasy points or more once in his past seven outings going back to last year. But don't give up hope yet. Not this week.
The Saints should be the perfect elixir to cure Newton's woes, even without Olsen. So far this season, New Orleans has been abused by Sam Bradford and Tom Brady for 793 passing yards, six touchdowns and no interceptions. Those two quarterbacks averaged 33 Fantasy points against this defense.
We're expecting this to be Newton's breakout game this season, which also should be good for Benjamin and McCaffrey, and Devin Funchess has sleeper appeal with Olsen out. The Saints are also expected to be without one of their better cornerbacks in Sterling Moore (pectoral).
In his career, Newton has averaged 23.1 Fantasy points against the Saints in 12 games. He has scored at least 27 Fantasy points against New Orleans in six games, but he's also finished with 16 points or less in six games, so the results have been split.
This game should be on the positive side of the ledger. And Newton will look like a star once again. Don't give up on him yet.
I'm starting Newton over: Drew Brees (at CAR), Derek Carr (at WAS), Ben Roethlisberger (at CHI), Matt Ryan (at DET) and Russell Wilson (at TEN)
|19.3 Projected points|
Matthew Stafford Detroit Lions QB
|Stafford and the Lions have been impressive through the first two weeks of the season with victories against Arizona and the Giants, and Stafford is averaging 25 Fantasy points a game over that span. This game is expected to be one of the more high-scoring matchups of the week, and we're looking forward to Stafford and Matt Ryan putting on a show. Stafford should continue his hot start in this matchup, and I consider him a top-five quarterback in Week 3.|
|17.1 Projected points|
Kirk Cousins Washington Redskins QB
|Cousins, like Newton, is another quarterback who has struggled to start the season after lofty expectations, but this will also be a get-right game. Cousins has only scored a combined 25 Fantasy points against the Eagles and Rams, but this game is projected to be the highest-scoring matchup of the week. Derek Carr is a must-start quarterback, and Cousins should be as well. The Raiders defense has played well so far against the Titans and Jets, but Cousins should expose this secondary at home.|
|22.0 Projected points|
Derek Carr Oakland Raiders QB
|Carr is off to a great start with at least 22 Fantasy points in each game against the Titans and Jets, and he should stay hot this week. The Redskins allowed Carson Wentz to score 22 Fantasy points in Week 1 before limiting Jared Goff to 12 points last week, but this should be their toughest test to date. Amari Cooper and Michael Crabtree are playing well, and Carr has even made Jared Cook look serviceable. We'll see how the Redskins decide to use Josh Norman given Oakland's two standout receivers, but Carr should get his production regardless given his high level of play to start the year.|
|21.1 Projected points|
Ben Roethlisberger Pittsburgh Steelers QB
|We're sticking with Roethlisberger here, even on the road. And we're trusting him even though the Bears have limited Ryan and Jameis Winston to a combined two touchdown passes through two games. Roethlisberger has already scored 20 Fantasy points at Cleveland in Week 1, and his weapons should be too much for this Bears defense, with Antonio Brown, Martavis Bryant and hopefully Le'Veon Bell finally having a big game. Roethlisberger remains a solid No. 1 Fantasy quarterback this week.|
|16.8 Projected points|
Jay Cutler Miami Dolphins QB
|We'll give Cutler a chance this week as a sleeper with upside, and the hope would be he performs against the Jets like Tyrod Taylor and Carr have in the first two games. Both quarterbacks scored at least 21 Fantasy points against the Jets, and they did so while throwing fewer than 30 passes. But the Jets have allowed five touchdown passes already, and Cutler should be able to find success with DeVante Parker, Jarvis Landry and Kenny Stills, even with Jay Ajayi running the ball at will. Cutler is a dart throw with bulls-eye potential.|
- Trevor Siemian (at BUF): Siemian has looked great through two games under offensive coordinator Mike McCoy, and he's scored at least 25 Fantasy points against the Chargers and Cowboys at home. We hope he'll have the same success on the road, and he's worth using as a low-end starting option.
- Andy Dalton (at GB): I'm expecting the Bengals switching offensive coordinators from Ken Zampese to Bill Lazor to inject some life into this offense, but Dalton is also in a situation of chasing points on the road this week. He's scored just four Fantasy points through two games, but this will be his first outing with at least 20 points.
- Carson Palmer (vs. DAL): The Cowboys defense was great against a bad offense for the Giants in Week 1 and terrible against the Broncos in Week 2. Palmer will hopefully play well in his first home game this year. He remains a low-end starting option given the matchup with Dallas.
|18.5 Projected points|
Jameis Winston Tampa Bay Buccaneers QB
|Winston didn't need to do much in a blowout home victory in Week 2 against Chicago, and he scored just 14 Fantasy points with 204 passing yards and one touchdown. He might not have much better production this week on the road at Minnesota. The Vikings were able to limit Drew Brees in Week 1 at home with just 291 passing yards and one touchdown, and Roethlisberger had a relatively quiet game at home given his normal production in Pittsburgh with 243 passing yards and two touchdowns. This is a game where Winston could get turnover prone, and he's just a No. 2 Fantasy quarterback this week.|
|17.9 Projected points|
Marcus Mariota Tennessee Titans QB
|Mariota has yet to play like a standout Fantasy quarterback with a combined 32 Fantasy points against Oakland and Jacksonville, and he should again post modest stats this week against the Seahawks. Seattle has already held Aaron Rodgers to fewer than 20 Fantasy points in Week 1 at Green Bay, and then last week the Seahawks abused Brian Hoyer, holding him under 100 passing yards. Better days are coming for Mariota, but he should not be started in most formats in Week 3.|
|16.4 Projected points|
Dak Prescott Dallas Cowboys QB
|Prescott is still searching for his first 20-point Fantasy outing this year, and he scored 18 points against the Giants in Week 1 and 19 points at Denver in Week 2 despite a career-high 50 pass attempts. He's also thrown two interceptions through two games after throwing just four all year in 2016. This week, Prescott should have a tough time against a good Cardinals defense, and he's dealing with a minor ankle injury from the game in Denver. Prescott is only worth starting in two-quarterback leagues this week.|
|13.4 Projected points|
Eli Manning New York Giants QB
|I'm not sure Manning is worth starting in a three-quarterback league with his current level of play. His offensive line is brutal, and the Giants have scored just one touchdown through two games. Coach Ben McAdoo is starting to criticize Manning, and this could get ugly in a hurry. The Eagles should be able to put plenty of pressure on Manning, and he should end up being sacked multiple times for the third game in a row. Manning is just a low-end No. 2 Fantasy quarterback this week|
|14.6 Projected points|
Joe Flacco Baltimore Ravens QB
|We recommended Flacco as a sleeper in Week 2 against Cleveland, and he played OK with 18 Fantasy points. That game was at home, and Flacco has struggled on the road in recent years. He's going to London this week to face the Jaguars, and this will be a tough defense against the pass all season. Flacco has been held to fewer than 20 Fantasy points in seven of his past nine road games going back to last year, and the Jaguars defense should frustrate Flacco this week. He's barely an option in two-quarterback leagues.|
I was excited about Wentz coming into the season, and he was. So far, so good with an average of 25 Fantasy points through two games against Washington and Kansas City, both on the road. He gets his first home start this week against the Giants, but he should be in for a long day. The Giants held Prescott and Stafford to 18 Fantasy points or less in each game this year, and only three quarterbacks in New York's past 18 games (Rodgers, Cousins and Roethlisberger) have scored more than 20 points. This will be Wentz's worst game to date, and he's only worth starting in two-quarterback leagues.
|11.3 Projected points|
Isaiah Crowell Cleveland Browns RB
|I like that Crowell is talking to coach Hue Jackson about getting more carries, and this is the perfect time to make that happen. After facing tough matchups to open the season against Pittsburgh and Baltimore, where Crowell struggled with 27 carries for 70 yards and no touchdowns and two catches for 33 yards, he should get a heavy workload against the Colts. And if Cleveland is able to control time of possession, Crowell should have the chance for his best game to date. Duke Johnson is also in play as a sleeper this week in PPR leagues with the Browns having to replace an injured Corey Coleman (hand) in the receiving corps.|
|10.0 Projected points|
Christian McCaffrey Carolina Panthers RB
|McCaffrey has been a bust so far through two games with a combined nine Fantasy points against the 49ers and Bills, but like the rest of the Panthers, this is the week where things turn around. He did manage 85 total yards at San Francisco in Week 1, but he lost a fumble. And he does have nine catches for 72 yards on 12 targets, so his production in the passing game isn't terrible, with the chance to improve with Olsen out. Four running backs have caught at least three passes against the Saints, and James White and Rex Burkhead last week each scored at least eight Fantasy points in standard leagues against New Orleans with their receiving totals alone. McCaffrey and Jonathan Stewart are worth starting this week, but this should be the breakout game we've been waiting for from McCaffrey.|
|8.9 Projected points|
Ameer Abdullah Detroit Lions RB
|I like Abdullah and Theo Riddick this week since the Falcons continue to struggle with pass-catching running backs. After allowing the most receptions, receiving yards and receiving touchdowns to running backs last year, Atlanta has already been abused by Tarik Cohen and Ty Montgomery, and the running backs for Chicago and Green Bay have combined for 19 catches, 143 yards and two touchdowns in two games. The Falcons have also allowed two rushing touchdowns in those outings, and Abdullah is coming off a strong game in Week 2 at the Giants with 17 carries for 86 yards. I like Abdullah as a No. 2 running back in all leagues, and Riddick is flex option in standard formats and a starter in PPR.|
|8.6 Projected points|
Chris Carson Seattle Seahawks RB
|We're hoping that Carson showed enough in the preseason and the first two games of the year to earn a big workload in Week 3, but there's no guarantee that Thomas Rawls won't limit his touches. Rawls might finally be healthy from a high-ankle sprain that kept him out of Week 1, but we hope he's No. 2 on the depth chart behind Carson. He had a solid outing in Week 2 against the 49ers with 20 carries for 93 yards and one catch for 7 yards, and Carson is worth the risk of using as No. 2 running back this week based on his potential workload. We've been talking about him for weeks, and now you can finally plug him into your lineup as a potential starter.|
|9.9 Projected points|
Mike Gillislee New England Patriots RB
|We're still waiting for Gillislee to catch his first pass of the season, so owners in PPR leagues are probably frustrated with him. But he's been great so far in standard leagues, and he should have the chance to score again this week at home. He has four touchdowns through two games, and the Patriots continue to feed him with 33 carries over that span. But for Gillislee to continue to be successful for Fantasy owners he will need to score touchdowns, and the Patriots are heavy favorites to win this game. If they are leading as expected, Gillislee should be killing the clock late in the game and could deliver top-15 or even top-10 production.|
Sleeper running backs
- Joe Mixon (at GB): This is the week the Bengals will turn him loose under Lazor, and I'm expecting a breakout performance. He's worth the risk of starting in all formats, and the Packers just allowed three total touchdowns to Atlanta's running backs in Week 2.
- Jonathan Stewart (vs. NO): I like Stewart and McCaffrey in this game, and both are worth starting in all formats. New Orleans has already allowed four running backs to score at least nine Fantasy points in a standard league this year.
- Darren Sproles (vs. NYG): LeGarrette Blount has fallen out of favor with the Eagles, and Sproles led the team in touches in Week 2 at Kansas City with 10 carries and two catches, finishing with 78 total yards. He's a flex option in all leagues and a low-end starter in PPR.
- Javorius Allen (at JAC): We're waiting to find out West's status for this week's game in London, and if West is out, Allen could be a standout Fantasy option in all leagues. He just had 14 carries for 66 yards and five catches for 35 yards and a touchdown in Week 2 against Cleveland and would see plenty of touches in Week 3 against the Jaguars if West can't play.
- Chris Thompson (vs. OAK): Thompson has scored three times in the first two games, and he should still see plenty of snaps even with Kelley expected to play through his rib injury. Thompson will play on passing downs, and he has 12 targets to start the season with seven catches for 81 yards and a touchdown. Thompson would benefit if Jordan Reed (chest) is out, and Thompson is a flex option in standard leagues and a low-end starter in PPR.
|7.4 Projected points|
Mark Ingram New Orleans Saints RB
|The timeshare in New Orleans is beyond frustrating, and the Saints need to focus on giving Ingram and Alvin Kamara touches instead of Adrian Peterson. Ingram only has 14 carries for 69 yards and nine catches for 78 yards through two games, and the Saints are wasting one of their best players by not giving him more work. With that in mind, and the matchup against Carolina, which has allowed the second-fewest Fantasy points to opposing running backs, you should only use Ingram as a flex option this week.|
|9.8 Projected points|
Jacquizz Rodgers Tampa Bay Buccaneers RB
|Rodgers got a heavy workload in Week 2 against Chicago with 19 carries for 67 yards and a touchdown, and he should get a lot of work again this week against the Vikings with Doug Martin (suspension) still out. But the matchup with Minnesota should be tough, and the Vikings have yet to allow a touchdown to a running back in two games against the Saints and Steelers, including holding Bell to 27 carries for 87 yards and four catches for 4 yards. Rodgers is just a flex option in standard leagues this week, and his value is lower in PPR.|
|7.4 Projected points|
Rob Kelley Washington Redskins RB
|Kelley is expected to play through a rib injury, but it's hard to know how effective he'll be after being forced to leave Week 2 at the Rams. He'll continue to share touches with Thompson, and the Raiders have done a nice job in run defense against the Titans and Jets through two games. Oakland hasn't allowed a touchdown to a running back and no one has run for more than 53 yards. Kelley will be just a No. 3 Fantasy running at best in this matchup.|
|7.8 Projected points|
Jordan Howard Chicago Bears RB
|Howard (shoulder) is expected to play in Week 3 against the Steelers despite leaving the Week 2 loss at Tampa Bay with his arm in his sling, but continue to monitor his status. Even if he does play, it will be hard to trust him in a tough matchup, as well as Tarik Cohen eating into his workload. Cohen is already a better option for the Bears on passing downs, and he's been more explosive than Howard through two games. The Steelers also have limited Crowell and Dalvin Cook to 66 total yards or less in each outing this year. We still have high expectations for Howard, but the beginning of the season has been a relative disaster for him with Cohen's emergence and his shoulder injury.|
|8.4 Projected points|
DeMarco Murray Tennessee Titans RB
|Murray returned to a limited practice Friday, and he's listed as questionable against the Seahawks. This is the worst-case scenario for Murray and Derrick Henry since it will be hard for Fantasy owners to trust either one if you have both on your roster. Murray should be considered a low-end No. 2 Fantasy running back at best because he might not get his usual workload since he's less than 100 percent. I would rather start Henry over Murray since he's healthy, and Henry is coming off a solid game in Week 2 at Jacksonville with with 14 carries for 92 yards and a touchdown.|
It will help Fournette that Baltimore standout defensive lineman Brandon Williams (foot) is out for this game, but the Ravens are going to make Fournette earn every yard in this tough matchup in London. Baltimore has already shut down the running games for Cincinnati and Cleveland, with no running back rushing for more than 40 yards and no touchdowns allowed, and the Ravens should be able to limit Fournette this week. We already saw him struggle in Week 2 against Tennessee with 14 carries for 40 yards and two catches for 21 yards, and a late touchdown in a blowout loss saved his Fantasy production. I would only use Fournette as a flex this week.
|10.4 Projected points|
Kelvin Benjamin Carolina Panthers WR
|Like Newton, Benjamin has struggled this year with no touchdowns, and his best game was Week 2 against Buffalo with six catches for 77 yards on eight targets. But he should go off this week in a big way against this Saints defense. New Orleans has already allowed three receivers (Stefon Diggs, Adam Thielen and Chris Hogan) to score at least 13 Fantasy points in a standard league, and Benjamin should add to that total. He also should see an uptick in targets moving forward with Olsen out.|
|9.2 Projected points|
DeVante Parker Miami Dolphins WR
|Parker got nine targets in Week 2 at the Chargers, and he finished with four catches for 85 yards. If he gets nine targets against the Jets, he should go off against this secondary. It only took six targets for Michael Crabtree to catch six passes for 80 yards and three touchdowns against the Jets last week, and Parker had 14 Fantasy points in his first ever game against the Jets in New York in 2015. He could have a repeat performance in Week 3.|
|8.0 Projected points|
Terrelle Pryor Washington Redskins WR
|Pryor has been a huge disappointment so far this season with a combined six catches for 97 yards and no touchdowns through two games against the Eagles and Rams, but this should be his breakout game against the Raiders. Oakland's secondary has yet to be tested by a standout passing offense, but the Raiders did allow Jermaine Kearse to catch four passes for 64 yards and two touchdowns in a blowout win last week. This game should be competitive and high scoring, with the passing games leading the way. And on Washington's side, I like Pryor and Jamison Crowder to come up big, especially if Reed is out.|
|9.3 Projected points|
J.J. Nelson Arizona Cardinals WR
|With John Brown not expected to play this week, Nelson will again be in a featured role. Even Jaron Brown (knee) is banged up, so Nelson and Larry Fitzgerald will have to do a lot of heavy lifting in the passing game this week. That's fine for Nelson, who has scored seven touchdowns in his past seven games going back to last year, including both games this season against the Lions and Colts. Dallas cornerback Orlando Scandrick (hand) could return for the Cowboys, but that might not matter with the way Nelson is playing. Keep him locked into your lineup as a No. 2 Fantasy receiver.|
|7.6 Projected points|
Golden Tate Detroit Lions WR
|Tate was great in Week 1 against the Cardinals with 10 catches for 107 yards on 12 targets, but he struggled in Week 2 at the Giants with four catches for 25 yards on four targets. We're expecting close to double digits in targets for Tate this week, and he's a solid No. 2 Fantasy receiver in all leagues. In his past two games against the Falcons, he has 13 catches for 257 yards and two touchdowns, and Tate is averaging seven catches for 80 yards in his past four home games going back to last year. That is likely the floor for Tate in this game, and he should post quality stats in what should be a shootout with the Falcons.|
Sleeper wide receivers
- Devin Funchess (vs. NO): Look for Funchess to benefit with Olsen out, and he had seven targets in Week 2 against the Bills with four catches for 68 yards. He will get more targets now and is worth a flier in this favorable matchup at home against the Saints.
- Rashard Higgins (at IND): Coleman's injury should allow Higgins to operate as the No. 1 receiver for the Browns, and he had seven catches for 95 yards on 11 targets in Week 2 at Baltimore. The Colts have already allowed Cooper Kupp and Nelson to score at least 13 Fantasy points in the past two games.
- Jermaine Kearse (vs. MIA): Kearse has been the best receiver for the Jets over the past two games, and he comes into this matchup with 11 catches for 123 yards and two touchdowns on 14 targets against the Bills and Raiders. The Dolphins don't have the best secondary, so Kearse can again be productive, especially if the Jets are chasing points.
- Cooper Kupp (at SF): Jared Goff will likely continue to rely on Kupp with underneath routes, and we'd love to see him get more than six targets in a game, which has been the case in each of the first two games of the season against Indianapolis and Washington. Still, he should be considered a No. 3 Fantasy receiver this week, and secondary receivers tend to have more success against the 49ers than No. 1 options going back to last year. Kupp, despite leading the team in targets with 12, is still behind Sammy Watkins on the depth chart.
- Kendall Wright (vs. PIT): He doesn't have an easy matchup against the Steelers, but he should see plenty of volume as the best receiver left in Chicago. Wright had 10 targets in Week 2 at Tampa Bay and finished with seven catches for 69 yards. The Bears will likely be chasing points in this game, and Wright can be a serviceable flex option in PPR.
|6.3 Projected points|
Jeremy Maclin Baltimore Ravens WR
|Maclin has been solid so far this season, and he's clearly been the No. 1 receiver for the Ravens as expected. But he should struggle this week against a very good Jaguars secondary. Through two games, Maclin has six catches for 87 yards and two touchdowns on nine targets, but Jacksonville has yet to allow a receiver to gain more than 55 receiving yards, with only one touchdown. Jalen Ramsey and A.J. Bouye should be able to lock down Maclin and Mike Wallace this week.|
|8.2 Projected points|
Dez Bryant Dallas Cowboys WR
|Bryant is more of a bust alert than a must sit selection, but this is another tough matchup for him against Cardinals cornerback Patrick Peterson. He had a good Fantasy outing in Week 2 at Denver in another difficult matchup with Aqib Talib, and he came away with seven catches for 59 yards and a touchdown on 16 targets. Prescott continues to look for Bryant despite his tough covers, including Week 1 against the Giants when he was held to two catches for 43 yards on nine targets, and it might be another tough day for Bryant. If you do start him, just lower your expectations and consider him more of a No. 3 Fantasy receiver in all leagues.|
|9.5 Projected points|
Stefon Diggs Minnesota Vikings WR
|Sam Bradford (knee) is out this week, and we saw how bad things could be for Diggs in Week 2 at Pittsburgh when Case Keenum started. Diggs had two catches for 27 yards on six targets, and the Buccaneers have a great secondary with Brent Grimes and Vernon Hargreaves. Diggs is still worth using as a No. 3 Fantasy receiver, but we hope Bradford is back soon. Keenum is not going to help Diggs have a breakout campaign this year.|
|6.7 Projected points|
Tyrell Williams Los Angeles Chargers WR
|As we feared, the healthy return of Keenan Allen has hurt Williams, who only has nine catches for 108 yards and no touchdowns through two games against Denver and Miami. Granted, the Broncos have a tough secondary, but Williams has seen just 11 targets to start the year. He combined for eight catches for 141 yards on 13 targets in two games against Kansas City last year, and he will likely be capped at about seven Fantasy points in this matchup. We hope Williams starts to get going soon with his production, otherwise Fantasy owners might decide to cut him.|
|5.8 Projected points|
Eric Decker Tennessee Titans WR
|Speaking of potentially getting cut by Fantasy owners, Decker is headed there now. He's been bad through two games against Oakland and Jacksonville with a combined six catches for 42 yards on 13 targets, and he's yet to find the end zone. Davis is out for the Titans, so Decker should see an increase in targets, along with Rishard Matthews. But the Seattle secondary should be able to contain this passing attack, and Decker is not worth starting in the majority of leagues.|
Jeffery will be in a better situation if Giants cornerback Janoris Jenkins (ankle) is out again after he missed Week 2 against Detroit, but this will be a tough matchup if Jenkins plays. No receiver has scored more than eight Fantasy points against the Giants this year, including matchups with Bryant and Tate, and Jenkins is one of the better cover corners in the NFL. Jeffery was great in Week 2 at Kansas City with seven catches for 92 yards and a touchdown on 13 targets, but he struggled in Week 1 at Washington with three catches for 38 yards on seven targets. He could be closer to that production this week than what he did against the Redskins given the Giants secondary.
|7.3 Projected points|
Martellus Bennett Green Bay Packers TE
|I like Bennett this week, and he should benefit with Cobb likely out. In Week 2 at Atlanta, Bennett led the team with 11 targets when Nelson and Cobb got hurt, but he only had five catches for 47 yards. He also had mediocre stats in Week 1 against Seattle with three catches for 43 yards on six targets, so he's due for a big performance. That could happen this week if Rodgers is forced to rely on him with a depleted receiving corps.|
|5.6 Projected points|
Hunter Henry Los Angeles Chargers TE
|We hope Henry doesn't become a yo-yo with his production after he had no targets in Week 1 at Denver but then was third on the team in Week 2 against Miami behind Allen and Melvin Gordon with seven targets, which resulted in seven catches for 80 yards. We'll buy into Henry playing well again this week, and he had four catches for 43 yards and a touchdown on five targets against the Chiefs in their last meeting in Week 17 last year. With Eric Berry (Achilles) out, the Chiefs are now vulnerable against tight ends, and Henry has top-10 upside this week.|
|5.4 Projected points|
Jack Doyle Indianapolis Colts TE
|Jacoby Brissett starting last week appears to be the best thing for Doyle until Andrew Luck (shoulder) returns. In a tough matchup against the Cardinals in Week 2, Brissett peppered Doyle with eight targets, which was second on the team behind Kamar Aiken, and Doyle finished with eight catches for 79 yards. This week, Doyle has a great matchup against the Browns, who have been abused by a tight end each week, with Jesse James and Benjamin Watson each scoring at least nine Fantasy points in a standard league. Doyle has the chance to rule in this matchup.|
Sleeper tight ends
- Benjamin Watson (at JAC): Watson led the Ravens in targets in Week 2 against the Browns with eight, and he finished with eight catches for 91 yards. He could be heavily targeted each week since Dennis Pitta led Baltimore in targets in 2016. The Jaguars gave up six catches for 91 yards and two total touchdowns to the Titans tight ends last week.
- Coby Fleener (at CAR): He's scored in each of the past three games that Willie Snead has been out going back to last year, and this is the final game of Snead's three-game suspension. Fleener also has scored in both meetings with the Panthers last year. He's worth using for one more week as a starter until Snead returns.
- Ed Dickson (vs. NO): With Olsen out, Dickson gets the chance for an increase in playing time and potentially targets. And the Saints have allowed a touchdown in each game this season to Kyle Rudolph and Gronkowski. Dickson is worth a flier in deeper leagues this week.
|4.5 Projected points|
Evan Engram New York Giants TE
|Engram has done a nice job through two games so far, and he led the Giants in targets in Week 2 against Detroit with seven, which resulted in four catches for 49 yards and a touchdown. He is tied for second on the team in targets with 12, and he has eight catches for 93 yards and the score on the season. And while he should be the No. 2 weapon for Manning this week behind Odell Beckham, he's not worth starting in anything but deeper leagues. The Eagles got beat up by Travis Kelce in Week 2 for eight catches, 103 yards and a touchdown on 10 targets, but Engram isn't on that level yet. I'd stash Engram if you want to carry a No. 2 Fantasy tight end on your roster, but he's not worth starting in most leagues in Week 3. He's also dealing with a concussion, which is the biggest concern to his production this week.|
|5.0 Projected points|
Charles Clay Buffalo Bills TE
|Clay should continue to be the best receiving option for the Bills, but that doesn't mean you have to start him in Week 3 against the Broncos. Even though Jason Witten just beat up Denver for 10 catches, 97 yards and a touchdown on 13 targets in Week 2, the Broncos also held the Chargers tight ends to two catches for 17 yards on three targets in Week 1. We expect Clay to be somewhere in between that production, but he's just a No. 2 Fantasy option at best this week. After his strong performance in Week 1 against the Jets with four catches for 53 yards and a touchdown on nine targets, he dropped to three catches for 23 yards on three targets against the Panthers in Week 2.|
|4.9 Projected points|
Cameron Brate Tampa Bay Buccaneers TE
|Brate let down Fantasy owners last week in a positive matchup against the Bears, and he saw the same amount of targets as fellow tight end O.J. Howard with just three. Brate finished with just two catches for 24 yards, and he should have another low stat line this week against the Vikings. Minnesota allowed a touchdown to Fleener in Week 1, but the Saints and Steelers tight ends combined for nine catches, 81 yards and a touchdown against the Vikings through two games. Brate is not even a streaming option this week.|
Witten has been fantastic so far this season with at least 11 Fantasy points in each game, and he's combined for 17 catches, 156 yards and two touchdowns on 22 targets against the Giants and Broncos. He has a tougher matchup this week against the Cardinals, who have allowed two touchdowns to a tight end in their past 18 games. Only one tight end over that span has scored double digits in Fantasy points in a standard league, which was Graham in Week 16 last year with exactly 10, and Witten should have his first down game of the season. I'd only trust him as a low-end starter in PPR.
Eagles (vs. NYG) - 12.4 Projected points
This one could get ugly if the Giants don't find an answer to their offensive line problems. So far, the Giants have one touchdown through two games against Dallas and Detroit, and Manning has been sacked eight times. The Eagles come into this game with eight sacks, and this is their first home game after opening the season at Washington and at Kansas City. The Eagles had five interceptions against Manning last year, and he's already thrown an interception in each game this season. Manning could be in line for a long day and a long year because of the poor blocking in front of him.
- Dolphins (at NYJ): The Jets haven't exactly been awful offensively, and we'll see how they do going home after two road games to open the season at Buffalo and at Oakland. But it's still worth buying into the Dolphins DST since Josh McCown already has two interceptions for the year, and the Jets are averaging just 16 points per game.
- Rams (at SF): The Rams DST was amazing in Week 1 against the Colts and terrible in Week 2 against the Redskins. This will be the Rams first road game on Thursday night, but the 49ers have yet to score a touchdown, with just four field goals in two games. Brian Hoyer also has two interceptions and six sacks, and the Rams DST should bounce back from last week's poor outing in this matchup.
- Patriots (vs. HOU): The Patriots DST hasn't been good through two games against Kansas City and New Orleans, but the Texans should prove to be a relatively easy opponent at home. Houston has already allowed 13 sacks through two games and scored a total of 20 points. Deshaun Watson could also get mistake prone if he's chasing points on the road as expected.
Chiefs (at LAC) - 10.0 Projected points
The Chargers will be tested in this game by the Chiefs' pass rush, and Kansas City sacked Wentz six times last week. But Philip Rivers has only been sacked twice so far in two games against Denver and Miami, and he only has one interception against the Broncos. Last year, the Chiefs only had one sack in two games against the Chargers, and I have confidence in Rivers to succeed in this matchup at home as a low-end starting Fantasy quarterback. The Chiefs DST is just a No. 2 option this week on the road.
One of the more consistent performers for the Panthers so far this year has been Gano, who actually had to earn his job after the team drafted Harrison Butker this offseason. Through two games, Gano has made six field goals and two extra points, and he's made multiple field goals in three of his past five outings against the Saints. New Orleans has also allowed three fields and at least two extra points in each game this season against Kai Forbath and Stephen Gostkowski. Gano should be locked in all lineups this week.
- Cairo Santos (at LAC): Santos finally made his first two field goals of the season in Week 2 against the Eagles, and he has nine extra points for the year. He has a solid track record against the Chargers with 12 field goals in his past five meetings, and he's scored at least nine Fantasy points in five of his past six outings against this team.
- Cody Parkey (at NYJ): Parkey made four field goals in his Dolphins debut in Week 2, including a 54-yard kick, and he converted his lone extra point. The Jets have yet to allow multiple field goals in a game, but they have allowed nine extra points to Steven Hauschka and Giorgio Tavecchio.
- Nick Folk (at MIN): Folk got off to a good start in his first game in Week 2 with three field goals and two extra points against the Bears, including a 50-yard kick. He faces a Vikings defense that has already allowed Will Lutz and Chris Boswell to make four field goals in each game this season.
The Bills have yet to allow an extra point attempt, which will change this week, and both opposing kickers they have faced have made multiple field goals in Chandler Catanzaro and Gano. But McManus only has one field goal this season in two home games, and it's hard to trust him on the road. He's now scored single digits in Fantasy points in eight games in a row going back to last year and 11 games in his past 13 outings. While Denver's offense is clicking, McManus has not had a big role with his production.
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