Logic backfired a bit with our week two daily fantasy football picks. Larry Fitzgerald inexplicably went from 13 week one targets to just six. That was surprising, considering the Cardinals had a tasty matchup against a bad Colts defense and were without both David Johnson and John Brown.
Fitz ended up disappointing greatly, as he got us just 3.6 fantasy points. Add in a Jimmy Graham injury, and our week two squad was in a bad way.
Most of our picks were still solid, though. Matt Ryan wasn’t really needed in an easy win over the Packers but still put up 14 points, Ty Montgomery was a gem of a pic (26), Marshawn Lynch scored and got over 11 fantasy points and Julio Jones and Chris Hogan both worked out, as well. The Seattle defense (8) and Blair Walsh (6) were both “meh”.
Had we not gotten burned by Fitz and Graham, we probably had a team that cashes everywhere. Still, the logic was there across the board and this team wasn’t bad, overall. In the right cash game setting, it could have still worked out just fine.
With that behind us, we can look to a very interesting week three. There are more injuries piling up and some brutal matchups on the horizon, which could take away some interesting plays that we’d normally be all over. It also opens up some we otherwise would never consider. Let’s get to it and see if our week 3 NFL FanDuel lineup can’t beat last week’s:
QB: Matt Ryan – Atlanta Falcons ($8.5k)
There are several quarterbacks I’m high on this week, with Aaron Rodgers, Matt Ryan and Derek Carr leading the way. I don’t think we should rule out Cam Newton ($8.1k at home against the Saints) in a potential breakout game, either.
I’m going back to the well with Ryan, though. Detroit’s run defense has looked pretty stingy to start the year, so I wouldn’t be shocked if we finally get a classic “air it out” game from Ryan. He and Julio Jones are due to team up for a huge outing, while the Lions’ major weakness defensively continues to be their pass defense.
RB: Theo Riddick – Detroit Lions ($5.6k)
Riddick is one of my favorite value plays for week three, as he’s constantly involved in Detroit’s passing game and can quickly rack up points. The Lions love using him as an extension of the running game, but it’s his matchup against a Falcons team that flat out can’t stop running backs that entices me.
It’s only been two weeks, but ATL has been abysmal at preventing running backs from doing damage as receivers. Week one saw Tarik Cohen haul in an 8-47-1 line as a receiver, while teammate Jordan Howard chipped in a solid three grabs of his own. In week two the Falcons were just as bad, giving up a sick 6-75-1 line to Ty Montgomery as a receiver out of the backfield.
Everything points to Riddick working out for us. He tends to be involved as a receiver no matter what, but against a good Falcons team, the Lions will likely be down and passing quite a bit. That’s awesome for Riddick, while an injury to stud pass rusher Vic Beasley only opens the door wider for a big day.
RB: Le’Veon Bell – Pittsburgh Steelers ($8.7k)
A slow start has Bell pretty close in price to the other top options at running back this week, which gives me one huge reason to push the chips in on him wrecking in week three. People are understandably down on him after two weeks of nothing in DFS circles, plus other productive backs should dilute his ownership.
Anytime I can land a discounted stud rusher with lower ownership than he’s worth, I’m game. Bell has been bad and his matchup isn’t necessarily easy, but I love him to finally get it going with a huge game this week.
WR: Geronimo Allison – Green Bay Packers ($4.6k)
Welcome to my favorite week three NFL DFS sleeper. Jordy Nelson (quad) and Randall Cobb (shoulder) both went down with injuries in week two, which should open the door for other receivers to get looks in Green Bay.
Allison hauled in three of his five targets on Sunday night and could be looking at a huge week three role. If so, we’re either going hard after him or Davanta Adams. As the cheaper option, I’ll take a shot on Allison and stack studs elsewhere. Just make sure both Cobb and Nelson are out if you plan on using Allison. If either play, my interest would shift more towards Adams.
WR: A.J. Green – Cincinnati Bengals ($7.5k)
The Bengals have been awful in 2017, but after seeing how easily the Falcons moved the ball and scored against Green Bay, something tells me they finally score a touchdown in week three. Cincy will have a tough time getting a win at Lambeau, but the Packers don’t have the resources to stop A.J. Green.
Green demanded the ball more recently, while a stud like this won’t stay grounded for long. The best part is his slow start has him coming in at a discounted price, so we can get an elite wide receiver on the cheap.
WR: Julio Jones – Atlanta Falcons ($9.3k)
Much like Green, Jones has a massive game coming his way. We saw glimpses of it in the first two weeks, but Jones has yet to score a touchdown or truly bust out. His time is coming in week three, as he has a fun matchup with a Lions defense that doesn’t have the tools to stop him, let alone really slow him down. I expect a huge game in the dome.
TE: Martellus Bennett – Green Bay Packers ($5.6k)
For the same reason we’re taking a shot on Allison, we’re going for it all with Bennett. If Nelson and Cobb are out, the Packers will lose two key receivers and will need to look elsewhere for help. Aside from just running the ball all day, this is going to lead to a slew of targets for guys like Bennett.
There is a “bounce-back” narrative to consider here, too. Bennett dropped a few passes and simply hasn’t been great to start out for the Packers, so he could look to prove his worth with a bigger role in week three. I actually don’t love him when we look at just his matchup against the Bengals, but it’s fair to point out Cincinnati really hasn’t been tested yet through the air with matchups against weak Baltimore and Houston passing games.
The targets will be there for Bennett. He’s been targeted 6 and 11 times in his first two games and two big injuries lock him in for something similar. We’re playing him expecting a conservative 5-50-1 line and I think we get it.
K: Matt Bryant – Atlanta Falcons ($4.9k)
I love to pay the minimum at kicker if something obvious opens up, but otherwise going cheap at kicker is like a dart throw. Phil Dawson was a turd in week one and then he wrecked in week two. You just don’t know what you’re going to get.
That isn’t to say guys like Bryant are locks for 10+ fantasy points, but I like him a lot this week. Detroit doesn’t have a tough defense, the Falcons looks just as good as they did a year ago and he’ll be kicking in a dome. He’s not cheap, but he feels pretty safe and I’m not sure we need to waste much more time here.
DEF: Pittsburgh Steelers ($5k)
I am not seeing a glaringly obvious defensive play going into week three. Perhaps something opens up more, like if Sam Bradford misses another start, we can hope the Buccaneers are elite for two straight weeks. Targeting the Colts or Browns isn’t a bad idea, except they’re both terrible and face each other. We could also target the Jets, but I’m not sure how much I trust the Miami defense yet.
Ultimately, I think I like the idea of targeting Mike Glennon and the Bears. Pittsburgh is on the road, but the Bears prefer to play a ball control game and top running back Jordan Howard is banged up. Chicago wasn’t good to begin with, but now they’re running on fumes and it’s just week three. The Steelers have a solid defense in general, too, but this feels like a good spot for turnovers and sacks, as well as score prevention.
An interesting pivot could be the Panthers at $4.5k or the Packers at $4.8k. Green Bay is probably too expensive, but they’re at home and the Bengals have yet to score a touchdown. Carolina is less dicey, as they’ve looked dominant and will be at home. I just don’t know if I want to bet against a desperate Saints team that is hunting their first win of the year. For the most part, I’m on the Steelers.