Fantasy Football Week 3 Recap: Immediate takeaways & analysis for every game | Fantasy Football News, Rankings and Projections | PFF

Fantasy News & Analysis

Fantasy Football Week 3 Recap: Immediate takeaways & analysis for every game

Kansas City, Missouri, USA; Los Angeles Chargers wide receiver Mike Williams (81) celebrates with center Corey Linsley (63) after scoring the winning touchdown against the Kansas City Chiefs during the second half at GEHA Field at Arrowhead Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports

NFL Week 3 came with more than its fair share of injury-related storylines, as injuries to key starters allowed players such as Justin Fields and Trey Sermon to step into starting roles while players such as Odell Beckham Jr. returned from injury to make their 2021 season debut.

PFF's fantasy football recap focuses on player usage and stats, breaking down all the vital information you need to achieve fantasy success in 2021.

Table Notes:

  • Snaps include plays called back due to penalties such as offensive holding or defensive pass interference. The other three stats have these plays removed.
  • Targets may differ from official NFL sources. The most likely discrepancy would be from a clear thrown away pass, where the NFL may give the target to the nearest receiver, while this data will not.
  • Carries are only on designed plays. Quarterback scrambles won’t count for the total number of carries in the game.
Click here for more PFF tools:

Rankings & ProjectionsWR/CB Matchup ChartNFL & NCAA Betting DashboardsNFL Player Props toolNFL & NCAA Power Rankings


Green Bay Packers at San Francisco 49ers

  • Davante Adams: 12 receptions, 132 yards, 1 TD (56.2% threat rate)
  • Aaron Jones: 19 carries, 82 yards, 1 TD (5 avoided tackles); 2 receptions, 14 receiving yards
Green Bay Packers Snaps Routes Run Targets Carries
WR
Davante Adams 55 31 17 0
Allen Lazard 41 18 1 0
Marquez Valdes-Scantling 40 24 4 0
Randall Cobb 20 12 1 0
Amari Rodgers 2 1 0 0
Malik Taylor 2 1 0 0
TE
Robert Tonyan 45 23 1 0
Marcedes Lewis 25 8 0 0
Josiah Deguara 17 11 1 0
HB
Aaron Jones 45 19 2 19
A.J. Dillon 18 10 2 6
Total 62 33 30 25
San Francisco 49ers Snaps Routes Run Targets Carries
WR
Deebo Samuel 63 42 10 2
Brandon Aiyuk 60 39 6 1
Mohamed Sanu 45 35 4 0
Jauan Jennings 3 1 0 0
Trent Sherfield 2 2 0 0
TE
George Kittle 70 35 9 1
Ross Dwelley 10 3 0 0
Charlie Woerner 8 1 0 0
HB
Trey Sermon 41 20 3 10
Total 70 44 36 21

Start Brandon Aiyuk: Aiyuk was a backup in Week 1 and a starter in Week 2. Now, he’s returned to an every-down role as a starter. He caught four passes for 37 yards and a touchdown. The second-year pass-catcher can be expected to remain in starting lineups and should be able to gain more fantasy points against weaker secondaries.

Monitor the 49ers running back situation: The 49ers didn’t have Elijah Mitchell or JaMycal Hasty for the game. So, San Francisco replaced Mitchell with Trey Sermon and Hasty with fullback Kyle Juszczyk. Sermon should have more fantasy value in the future should he need to start and the 49ers don't surrender an early 10-point lead. He also didn’t do anything to show he should be taking playing time ahead of Mitchell.

Bench Robert Tonyan: Tonyan was held to single-digit receiving yards for the second time in three games. The Packers have continued a heavy rotation of tight ends, which limits his pass routes. He remains in starting lineups due to his touchdown potential, but now he’s not even on the field for red-zone opportunities. The Packers have run seven plays with four yards or less to go for a touchdown, and he’s been on the field for one. Last season he was in for 25-of-43 and scored four touchdowns on those plays.


New York Jets at Denver Broncos

  • Melvin Gordon III: 18 carries, 61 yards, 1 TD; 1 reception, 21 receiving yards (3 missed tackles forced)
  • Tim Patrick: 5 receptions, 98 receiving yards (17.4 aDOT)
New York Jets Snaps Routes Run Targets Carries
WR
Corey Davis 51 37 10 0
Braxton Berrios 42 34 3 0
Keelan Cole 27 19 2 0
Elijah Moore 26 19 6 0
Jeff Smith 6 6 1 0
TE
Ryan Griffin 33 18 1 0
Tyler Kroft 23 16 2 0
Daniel Brown 5 4 0 0
Trevon Wesco 3 2 0 0
HB
Ty Johnson 31 21 5 3
Michael Carter 23 11 3 9
Total 54 40 33 13

Denver Broncos Snaps Routes Run Targets Carries
WR
Tim Patrick 51 23 5 0
Courtland Sutton 51 28 5 0
Diontae Spencer 24 11 1 0
K.J. Hamler 15 11 3 0
Kendall Hinton 4 1 0 0
TE
Noah Fant 58 20 3 0
Albert Okwuegbunam 29 9 1 0
Eric Saubert 24 3 0 0
Andrew Beck 12 2 0 0
HB
Melvin Gordon III 36 16 1 18
Javonte Williams 27 9 4 12
Damarea Crockett 4 0 0 3
Total 67 29 23 35

Pick up Michael Carter: The Jets have used their running backs interchangeably in the past, but today the main backfield contributors had more distinct roles. Carter was more of the early-down back, while Ty Johnson mixed in on early downs while also playing third downs. This means we can expect Carter to be the clear leader in carries going forward.

In general, the team needs to do better on offense before he goes in starting lineups, but he at least needs to be on rosters because that time could come. He’s still available in 45% of ESPN leagues.

Monitor the K.J. Hamler injury: Hamler injured his knee early in the game and didn’t return. The Broncos had a secure lead for most of the game, so they didn’t use many three-receiver sets the rest of the game. Diontae Spencer took Hamler’s spot as the slot receiver. Spencer probably isn’t worth a pickup if Hamler misses significant time. If anything it should mean a higher target share for the other Broncos players.

Monitor the Elijah Moore injury: Moore got off to a promising start to the game, with six targets on 19 routes, but then he suffered a concussion and missed the rest of the game. Keelan Cole took over as the starting wide receiver. If the second-round rookie misses a game, Cole should be left on the waiver wire.

Avoid the Jets tight ends: Tyler Kroft has been the Jets primary receiving tight end, but he left the game with a chest injury. Ryan Griffin took over as the receiving tight end, but only caught one pass for five yards. Even when Kroft is healthy, the Jets use their tight ends by situation, which doesn’t give Kroft enough playing time to have much of an impact in fantasy football leagues.


Miami Dolphins at Las Vegas Raiders

  • Peyton Barber: 23 carries, 111 yards (101 yards after contact), 1 TD; 3 receptions, 31 receiving yards
  • Mike Gesicki: 10 receptions, 86 yards (7.3 aDOT)
Miami Dolphins Snaps Routes Run Targets Carries
WR
Jaylen Waddle 73 53 13 0
DeVante Parker 64 50 6 0
Will Fuller V 51 40 6 0
Mack Hollins 24 14 1 0
Jakeem Grant 2 0 0 0
TE
Mike Gesicki 55 42 12 0
Durham Smythe 34 14 0 0
Adam Shaheen 28 11 0 0
Hunter Long 2 0 0 0
HB
Myles Gaskin 43 26 6 13
Malcolm Brown 34 11 2 7
Salvon Ahmed 5 5 0 0
Total 83 58 46 21

Las Vegas Raiders Snaps Routes Run Targets Carries
WR
Bryan Edwards 63 38 5 0
Henry Ruggs III 48 29 7 1
Hunter Renfrow 43 30 6 0
Zay Jones 21 11 1 0
Willie Snead IV 5 3 0 0
TE
Darren Waller 65 39 7 0
Foster Moreau 48 17 2 0
Derek Carrier 10 1 0 0
HB
Peyton Barber 47 15 5 23
Kenyan Drake 37 23 4 8
Total 83 46 38 35

Sell high on Mike Gesicki: The Dolphins tight end led the team in receiving yards after catching just three passes over the first two weeks. This week, the Dolphins finally had their three wide receivers available, which could have led Miami to use more 11 personnel. This could mean more playing time by Gesicki going forward, but it will be hard for him to maintain this target share.

Start Jaylen Waddle: The rookie wide receiver led the wide receiver room in snaps, routes run, targets and receptions. He was a clear favorite of new starting quarterback Jacoby Brissett. He should only get more effective as the season progresses.

Drop Kenyan Drake in smaller leagues: Drake should remain the Raiders receiving back over the rest of the season, but that might not be enough to stay on fantasy rosters. Josh Jacobs missed his second straight game, but Peyton Barber was the clear primary rusher. Drake caught three passes for 33 yards, but it’s unlikely he ever sees a bigger role unless both other backs get hurt. If Drake isn’t going to be in fantasy starting lineups when bye weeks hit in your league, then he probably won’t be in a starting lineup the rest of the season.


Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Los Angeles Rams

Tampa Bay Buccaneers Snaps Routes Run Targets Carries
WR
Chris Godwin 70 58 6 1
Mike Evans 61 51 10 0
Tyler Johnson 34 28 6 0
Scotty Miller 32 31 3 0
Jaelon Darden 3 3 1 0
TE
Rob Gronkowski 45 27 7 0
Cameron Brate 33 28 5 0
O.J. Howard 14 7 1 0
HB
Giovani Bernard 33 28 10 0
Leonard Fournette 26 20 3 4
Ronald Jones 12 3 0 5
Total 73 60 52 11

Los Angeles Rams Snaps Routes Run Targets Carries
WR
Robert Woods 57 33 6 1
Cooper Kupp 53 35 12 0
Van Jefferson 50 28 6 0
DeSean Jackson 21 16 5 0
Bennett Skowronek 2 0 0 0
TE
Tyler Higbee 49 27 5 0
Johnny Mundt 31 12 0 0
HB
Sony Michel 48 22 4 20
Jake Funk 14 12 0 1
Total 65 39 38 24

Don’t add Giovani Bernard: Bernard had a busy day, catching nine passes for 51 yards and a touchdown. His role in the offense remained the same as the third-down back and two-minute back, and his touchdown came in the last two minutes of the game. He saw this much work only because the Buccaneers were playing from behind. It’s unlikely Tampa Bay trails by three scores very often this year.

Start Sony Michel as long as Darrell Henderson is out: Michel took the early-down work, while he and Jake Funk split time on third downs or other passing situations. This led to 20 carries. He wasn’t very effective against the Buccaneers' run defense, but he should do better in other games as a starter. Anyone who can see 20 carries in a game should be in starting lineups.

Don’t add DeSean Jackson unless it’s a deeper league: The 34-year-old had one of the best highlights of the week with a 75-yard deep bomb for a touchdown, but he’s still a clear fourth player on the Rams' wide receiver depth chart. That’s unlikely to change with how much the team likes the other three receivers. His stat line will be very dependent on big plays each week. The only way he could become a faster starter is if there’s an injury to one of the other players.

Seattle Seahawks at Minnesota Vikings

  • Alexander Mattison: 26 carries, 112 yards, 6 receptions, 59 receiving yards (36.8% threat rate)
  • Justin Jefferson: 9 receptions, 118 receiving yards, 1 TD (8 first downs)
Seattle Seahawks Snaps Routes Run Targets Carries
WR
Tyler Lockett 49 34 4 0
D.K. Metcalf 47 32 9 0
Freddie Swain 45 32 2 1
Penny Hart 8 7 2 0
TE
Gerald Everett 42 27 5 0
Will Dissly 20 10 1 0
Tyler Mabry 1 1 0 0
HB
Chris Carson 23 9 2 12
Travis Homer 16 13 3 0
Alex Collins 14 11 0 2
Total 53 37 28 15
Minnesota Vikings Snaps Routes Run Targets Carries
WR
Adam Thielen 72 38 7 1
Justin Jefferson 62 37 11 0
K.J. Osborn 44 30 2 0
Dede Westbrook 6 4 0 0
TE
Tyler Conklin 54 23 8 0
Ben Ellefson 30 5 0 0
Chris Herndon 12 9 0 0
HB
Alexander Mattison 51 19 7 26
Ameer Abdullah 22 14 0 5
Total 75 39 35 35

Add Tyler Conklin in deeper leagues: Conklin has established himself as the clear receiving tight end on the team. Only five Vikings players saw a target on 38 pass attempts, and he recorded eight of them. He probably won’t have many other games with this many targets, but he is set to see at least a few each week. Conklin should be more reliable than tight ends on several other teams.

Monitor the Chris Carson injury: Carson was dealing with a hamstring injury late in the game, likely contributing to him barely playing in the second half. Alex Collins was the only other back to receive a carry in this game, and he would likely be the primary runner if Carson misses any time. Travis Homer played on half of the third downs in the game.

Monitor the Tyler Lockett injury: Lockett had what looked to be a serious left knee injury but then later returned to the game. Hopefully his return means the injury wasn’t serious, but it wouldn’t be the first time a player re-entered a game and then missed time later. Lockett had the second-most fantasy points for a wide receiver heading into this week but put together a quieter performance with four catches for 31 yards. D.K. Metcalf instead had the big game for Seattle, recording six receptions for 107 yards and a touchdown.

Cincinnati Bengals at Pittsburgh Steelers

  • Najee Harris: 14 carries, 40 yards, 14 receptions, 102 receiving yards (11 total avoided tackles)
  • Ja’Marr Chase: 4 receptions, 65 yards, 2 TD (16.2 aDOT)
Cincinnati Bengals Snaps Routes Run Targets Carries
WR
Ja'Marr Chase 39 19 5 0
Tyler Boyd 37 19 6 0
Auden Tate 27 10 1 0
Mike Thomas 10 5 1 0
Trenton Irwin 6 4 0 0
Stanley Morgan Jr. 3 1 0 0
TE
C.J. Uzomah 33 14 1 0
Drew Sample 21 4 0 0
Mitchell Wilcox 2 0 0 0
HB
Joe Mixon 35 9 1 18
Samaje Perine 10 4 1 1
Chris Evans 5 5 2 0
Total 47 19 18 23
Pittsburgh Steelers Snaps Routes Run Targets Carries
WR
Chase Claypool 76 57 15 0
James Washington 66 50 5 0
Ray-Ray McCloud III 47 40 4 0
JuJu Smith-Schuster 33 21 4 0
Cody White 9 8 2 0
TE
Eric Ebron 47 37 3 0
Pat Freiermuth 30 22 5 0
Zach Gentry 17 10 0 0
HB
Najee Harris 79 57 19 14
Benny Snell Jr. 4 4 0 0
Total 83 63 58 14

Monitor JuJu Smith-Schuster’s injury: He left the game with a rib injury and didn’t return. Ray-Ray McCloud III took over his slot role and put up an identical stat line of three catches on four targets. He would be the player to target off waiver wire if Smith-Schuster misses significant time. The Steelers view James Washington as the backup to the other two starters, so the fact that Diontae Johnson missed this game shouldn’t have any impact on who is in the slot.

Sell high on the Bengals offense: Joe Mixon is clearly the Bengals' top rusher, but he might be losing some of the receiving work he gained at the start of the year. Rookie Chris Evans split third-down work with Mixon and caught both of his targets for 23 yards. Mixon only had a 4-yard catch. The Bengals' two starting receivers combined for three touchdowns, which will be harder to sustain once Tee Higgins is back. They will both have value going forward, but it can’t hurt finding out what they could recoup in a trade at this point. 

Monitor the Steelers tight end situation: Pat Freiermuth scored the Steelers' only touchdown. It seemed like his role was increasing over the first two weeks of the season, but Eric Ebron saw a significant lead in routes run. The rookie saw more targets while Ebron didn’t catch any of his three targets. Freiermuth could be a starting fantasy tight end if he received all of the playing time. That could happen this season, but it might take some time.

Atlanta Falcons at New York Giants

  • Saquon Barkley: 16 carries, 51 yards, 1 TD; 6 receptions, 43 receiving yards (-2.1 aDOT)
  • Calvin Ridley: 8 receptions, 61 yards (5.2 aDOT)
Atlanta Falcons Snaps Routes Run Targets Carries
WR
Calvin Ridley 59 38 11 0
Olamide Zaccheaus 43 28 6 0
Tajae Sharpe 15 13 1 0
TE
Kyle Pitts 52 34 3 0
Lee Smith 26 6 3 0
Hayden Hurst 24 12 1 0
HB
Mike Davis 37 19 4 12
Cordarrelle Patterson 26 16 7 7
Total 62 39 36 20
New York Giants Snaps Routes Run Targets Carries
WR
Kenny Golladay 48 30 5 0
Kadarius Toney 46 31 3 0
Collin Johnson 34 19 7 0
Sterling Shepard 24 14 3 0
C.J. Board 22 14 1 0
Darius Slayton 9 6 1 0
TE
Evan Engram 39 29 4 0
Kyle Rudolph 29 8 0 0
Kaden Smith 28 8 1 0
HB
Saquon Barkley 60 33 7 16
Elijhaa Penny 8 3 0 2
Gary Brightwell 2 1 0 1
Total 70 42 32 23

Monitor the Giants' WR situation: Kadarius Toney started to see more playing time last week, which cut into the playing time of Darius Slayton. However, both Sterling Shepard and Slayton left this game in the first half with hamstring injuries and Kenny Golladay was playing hurt. So, this week, the first-round rookie led the wide receiver room in routes to run, but Collin Johnson had a better receiving day with five catches for 51 yards.

If Shepard misses any time, Toney would be the player to target on the waiver wire because both Shepard and Toney play in the slot in three-receiver sets.

Add Evan Engram: The Giants tight end made his season debut and caught two passes for 21 yards. Most importantly, he was targeted six times, and he could see even more targets going forward if some of these injuries are serious.

Engram barely played in two-tight end sets, which could be injury-related or it could be a permanent change to his role in the offense. If it’s temporary, Engram could be one of the leaders in targets at tight end going forward.

Consider starting Cordarrelle Patterson in PPR: The Falcons' backfield was basically a 50/50 split in the first half, with Mike Davis seeing a few more carries and Patterson a few more pass routes. Davis took more snaps as the game went on, ultimately giving him the snaps lead. Patterson can now be considered one of the better receiving back options in fantasy football. Atlanta gives him more carries than most receiving backs, and he’s used more creatively. As of writing this, he has the third-most receiving yards for a running back this season. If Patterson can improve as a runner, there is a chance he becomes the starter.


New Orleans Saints at New England Patriots

New Orleans Saints Snaps Routes Run Targets Carries
WR
Marquez Callaway 38 16 5 0
Kenny Stills 29 10 3 0
Deonte Harris 19 15 3 0
Chris Hogan 16 7 1 0
Ty Montgomery 13 11 0 0
TE
Adam Trautman 51 13 1 0
Garrett Griffin 30 3 0 0
Juwan Johnson 8 5 1 0
HB
Alvin Kamara 52 17 3 24
Tony Jones Jr. 13 9 2 2
Total 62 27 19 35
New England Patriots Snaps Routes Run Targets Carries
WR
Jakobi Meyers 69 55 14 0
Nelson Agholor 58 47 7 0
Kendrick Bourne 55 46 8 0
Gunner Olszewski 16 11 0 0
TE
Hunter Henry 52 39 6 0
Jonnu Smith 30 15 6 0
HB
Brandon Bolden 33 23 4 3
Damien Harris 22 13 2 6
J.J. Taylor 10 8 2 1
James White 6 4 1 1
Total 72 56 50 14

Monitor the James White injury: White left the game on a cart with a hip injury and was quickly ruled out. There is a good chance he could miss some time. Brandon Bolden primarily took over White’s role, although J.J. Taylor also saw an increase in playing time. This is probably a situation to avoid on the waiver wire, as these two players could end up splitting the role. If anything, this will lead to more work by the Patriots' wide receivers and tight ends. Damien Harris' role was unchanged.

Buy low on Damien Harris: The Saints were the best team at preventing fantasy points to running backs last season and have been off to a similar start this year. New England started the game with three three-and-outs and stayed away from the run game the rest of the day. Harris is still the team's clear early-down back in typical situations and will have much better games than this.

Avoid Saints not named Alvin Kamara: The Saints used a heavy rotation of players situationally throughout the game. Kamara was the only one to run a route on over 60% of New Orleans' pass plays. He was also the only player with more than 50 yards. Taysom Hill was more involved in the offense than previous weeks, with more carries and more routes run than the previous two games combined. The wide receiver room could get more crowded next week with Tre’Quan Smith eligible to return, and then Michael Thomas is eligible to come back after three more games.

Los Angeles Chargers at Kansas City Chiefs

  • Mike Williams: 7 receptions, 122 yards, 2 TD (2 avoided tackles)
  • Austin Ekeler: 11 carries, 55 yards, 6 receptions, 52 receiving yards, 1 TD (1.93 YPRR)
Los Angeles Chargers Snaps Routes Run Targets Carries
WR
Keenan Allen 55 39 12 0
Mike Williams 48 35 9 0
Jalen Guyton 41 28 1 1
Josh Palmer 10 5 0 0
TE
Jared Cook 46 32 3 0
Donald Parham 31 11 1 0
Stephen Anderson 14 3 0 0
HB
Austin Ekeler 49 27 6 11
Larry Rountree III 11 5 1 4
Justin Jackson 7 3 0 2
Total 66 41 35 20
Kansas City Chiefs Snaps Routes Run Targets Carries
WR
Tyreek Hill 58 41 8 1
Demarcus Robinson 56 37 2 0
Mecole Hardman 52 32 3 1
Byron Pringle 30 21 4 0
Marcus Kemp 8 5 1 0
TE
Travis Kelce 69 44 11 0
Blake Bell 23 6 1 0
Noah Gray 11 4 1 0
Joe Fortson 6 6 2 0
HB
Clyde Edwards-Helaire 49 27 3 17
Darrel Williams 27 16 2 7
Jerick McKinnon 3 3 0 0
Total 79 50 38 26

Keep starting Clyde Edwards-Helaire: The sophomore running back lost a fumble for the second straight game, leading some to think Kansas City might bench him. Instead, the Chiefs handed off to him 19 times despite losing for most of the game. He also caught two passes, including a touchdown. Edwards-Helaire needs to remain in fantasy starting lineups as long as Kansas City believes in him, because he will continue to be among the league leaders in touches.

Mike Williams is a must-start: Williams was declared a must-start in this piece before but was started in only 50% of ESPN leagues last week. That should change this week after a 122-yard, two-touchdown performance. He continues to have a much lower average depth of target compared to previous seasons, making him more of a dynamic wide receiver instead of just a deep threat. Williams might not see as many touchdowns going forward, but he should continue to see significant targets and yards.

Buy low on Tyreek Hill: Anytime a star wide receiver fails to score a touchdown and stays under 60 yards, it’s a good time to buy low. This is no exception. Kansas City tried to get its other wide receivers more involved in the offense — but without much success. He saw a lower percentage of snaps compared to usual, but that is likely due to how many plays Kansas City ran.

Arizona Cardinals at Jacksonville Jaguars

  • A.J. Green: 5 receptions, 112 yards (3 for 4 on contested targets)
  • Christian Kirk: 7 receptions, 104 yards (28.6% threat rate)
Arizona Cardinals Snaps Routes Run Targets Carries
WR
DeAndre Hopkins 61 36 5 0
A.J. Green 52 32 6 0
Christian Kirk 39 28 8 0
Rondale Moore 22 14 2 1
Antoine Wesley 9 2 0 0
TE
Maxx Williams 50 19 3 0
Darrell Daniels 22 7 0 0
Demetrius Harris 7 2 0 0
HB
Chase Edmonds 43 25 8 11
James Conner 25 8 1 11
Total 66 37 33 27
Jacksonville Jaguars Snaps Routes Run Targets Carries
WR
Marvin Jones Jr. 67 40 9 0
D.J. Chark Jr. 61 37 5 0
Laviska Shenault Jr. 44 32 5 0
Jamal Agnew 6 3 0 0
Phillip Dorsett 5 2 0 0
Tyron Johnson 1 0 0 0
TE
Jacob Hollister 46 29 5 0
Chris Manhertz 25 5 0 0
Luke Farrell 17 7 1 0
HB
James Robinson 40 16 6 15
Carlos Hyde 23 11 0 8
Dare Ogunbowale 5 5 0 0
Total 68 40 31 26

Sell high on James Robinson: Robinson had his most successful game of the season with a season-high in carries and his first touchdown of the year. A lot of his involvement had to do with the game script, as the Jaguars had a lead for part of the game and were within at least a touchdown for all of it. Carlos Hyde also had a respectable eight carries and just as many pass routes. The second-year back won’t have as much production in games where Jacksonville spends more time playing catch-up on the scoreboard.

Sell high on A.J. Green and Christian Kirk: Both receivers put up over 100 receiving yards, but this was a perfect situation for them. DeAndre Hopkins was questionable coming into the game and played hurt, while Rondale Moore was given only three touches in the game. This meant both players saw significant targets, and they capitalized on them while facing a Jacksonville secondary that gave up 416 yards to wide receivers in the first two games. A healthy Hopkins will take a higher percentage of targets going forward, as will Moore.

The Cardinals' backfield remains predictable: Arizona continues to use its two-man backfield exactly as everyone expected heading into the season. James Conner gets the goal-line carries, which led to two touchdowns today, while Chase Edmonds gets the receiving work, which included tying the team lead in targets and receptions. Both players should be in fantasy starting lineups in any game Arizona is favored to win.

Baltimore Ravens at Detroit Lions

  • Mark Andrews: 5 receptions, 109 yards (4 explosive plays)
  • D’Andre Swift: 14 carries, 47 yards, 1 TD, 7 receptions, 60 receiving yards (53.8% threat rate)
Baltimore Ravens Snaps Routes Run Targets Carries
WR
Sammy Watkins 46 34 7 0
Marquise Brown 39 29 6 0
Devin Duvernay 33 28 4 0
James Proche 13 11 1 0
TE
Mark Andrews 46 31 7 0
Eric Tomlinson 15 4 0 0
Josh Oliver 11 8 1 0
HB
Ty'Son Williams 29 21 1 5
Latavius Murray 19 11 0 7
Devonta Freeman 9 5 0 3
Total 58 40 27 17
Detroit Lions Snaps Routes Run Targets Carries
WR
Kalif Raymond 47 27 9 0
Quintez Cephus 45 22 1 0
Amon-Ra St. Brown 27 14 1 0
Trinity Benson 24 14 1 0
KhaDarel Hodge 5 5 1 0
TE
T.J. Hockenson 53 26 2 0
Darren Fells 26 14 3 0
HB
D'Andre Swift 35 13 7 14
Jamaal Williams 31 14 2 12
Total 63 34 27 26

Don’t start Ty’Son Williams: The rookie continues to see the most snaps out of the Ravens backfield, but that only led to 22 yards on five carries and one target. Latavius Murray was the primary rusher for the Ravens. This game might have just been a fluke, but if this trend continues, that would mean Williams is just the team’s receiving back. A few more weeks of this, and Williams wouldn’t need to be on fantasy rosters anymore.

Avoid the Lions wide receivers: Each week there has been a different Lions wide receiver who seemed like the top option on the team. This week it was Kalif Raymond, who caught six passes for 68 yards while leading the team in targets. No other wide receiver saw more than one target. Last week Quintez Cephus led the group, and neither receiver was among the top-three on the team in ADP heading into the season. The Detroit running backs will continue to be heavily involved.

Start Jamaal Williams: The Lions' running back ranked 11th in fantasy points at the position coming into the day and put together another solid performance with 42 rushing yards on 12 carries and a touchdown, along with two catches for 25 yards. D’Andre Swift is the start, but Williams is a very close second. The Lions are relying so heavily on their backs that the former Packer should continue to have value each week along with Swift.

Washington Football Team at Buffalo Bills

  • Emmanuel Sanders: 5 receptions, 94 yards, 2 TD (15.8 aDOT)
  • Antonio Gibson: 12 carries, 31 yards, (13 yards before contact), 1 reception, 73 receiving yards, 1 TD
Washington Football Team Snaps Routes Run Targets Carries
WR
Terry McLaurin 52 31 7 0
Adam Humphries 35 22 4 0
Dyami Brown 35 21 2 1
Cam Sims 20 10 2 1
DeAndre Carter 5 3 0 0
Dax Milne 3 1 0 0
TE
Logan Thomas 54 30 4 0
Ricky Seals-Jones 8 1 0 0
John Bates 1 0 0 0
HB
Antonio Gibson 31 11 2 12
J.D. McKissic 25 19 2 3
Total 54 31 24 19
Buffalo Bills Snaps Routes Run Targets Carries
WR
Emmanuel Sanders 63 40 6 0
Stefon Diggs 60 39 10 0
Cole Beasley 52 36 13 0
Gabriel Davis 22 12 1 0
Isaiah McKenzie 15 9 0 1
Jake Kumerow 13 8 0 0
TE
Dawson Knox 62 36 5 0
Tommy Sweeney 14 5 2 0
HB
Zack Moss 45 24 3 13
Devin Singletary 33 21 2 11
Total 79 48 43 30

Make Emmanuel Sanders a top waiver target: Sanders was already a waiver wire target before this week, but now he will be more difficult to pick up. He led the team in routes run and offensive snaps for a skill player, which led to two touchdowns. He should keep a big role in the Bills' high-powered offense all season. He should have a high floor of at least a few catches each game.

Drop Devin Singletary: The Bills' confidence in Zack Moss has grown each week. He went from inactive Week 1 to active Week 2, to Matt Breida being a healthy scratch today. Singletary started the game and dropped a pass on the first drive. Moss took more snaps on the second drive as well as the rest of the game. These two will likely continue to split playing time the rest of the season. It’s hard enough for one back to be a fantasy starter out of this backfield with how much Buffalo passes and Josh Allen’s rushing ability. A split backfield makes it impossible for one to be a starter in most leagues.

Add Curtis Samuel: Washington’s high-priced free agent started the season on injured reserve and is eligible to return next week. This three-week time period gave third-round rookie Dyami Brown a chance to prove he deserves a role in the offense. He didn’t catch either of his targets, lost yards on his carry and received less playing time than previous weeks. This makes it more likely that Samuel will see an every-down role as soon as he’s healthy enough for it.

Indianapolis Colts at Tennessee Titans

  • Derrick Henry: 28 carries, 113 yards (73 yards after contact); 3 receptions, 31 receiving yards
  • Nyheim Hines: 6 carries, 25 yards, 1 TD; 5 receptions, 54 receiving yards (39 receiving yards after contact)
Indianapolis Colts Snaps Routes Run Targets Carries
WR
Michael Pittman Jr. 57 39 11 1
Zach Pascal 54 39 5 0
Parris Campbell 49 34 3 0
Ashton Dulin 7 1 0 1
TE
Jack Doyle 35 19 2 0
Mo Alie-Cox 28 16 2 0
Kylen Granson 12 6 0 0
HB
Nyheim Hines 34 22 6 6
Jonathan Taylor 29 13 1 10
Total 61 39 30 18
Tennessee Titans Snaps Routes Run Targets Carries
WR
Nick Westbrook-Ikhine 53 25 4 0
Julio Jones 35 18 4 0
Chester Rogers 28 17 2 0
Cameron Batson 27 13 1 0
Racey McMath 16 6 1 0
A.J. Brown 8 5 2 1
TE
Geoff Swaim 44 11 4 0
MyCole Pruitt 37 13 1 0
Tommy Hudson 21 5 2 0
HB
Derrick Henry 49 15 3 28
Jeremy McNichols 18 13 1 2
Mekhi Sargent 1 0 0 1
Total 68 31 25 34

Monitor A.J. Brown’s injury: Brown lasted only eight snaps before leaving the game with a hamstring injury, and he didn’t return. Nick Westbrook-Ikhine took over as the starter opposite Julio Jones. The Titans' passing offense spread the ball around, targeting 11 different receivers in total, but Westbrook-Ikhine led the team in receptions (4) and yards (53) and even came away with a touchdown. If Brown’s injury is serious enough for him to miss games, Westbrook-Ikhine would be the man to target off the waiver wire.

Drop Jack Doyle: The veteran tight end was a popular waiver wire target last week after his five-catch, 64-yard performance. But, as it turns out, his role in that game was just temporary, as he was back to running a route on less than half of the Colts' pass plays this week, ultimately catching one pass for 10 yards. It’s also concerning that fourth-round rookie Kylen Granson more than doubled his career pass routes in this game.

Buy low on Jonathan Taylor: Taylor looked great with the ball in his hands today, gaining 64 yards on 10 carries. The problem was Indianapolis didn’t run that many plays and were playing from behind all game. The most promising storyline from this game was that Marlon Mack was a healthy scratch, leaving this as a two-man backfield. The second-year back should have much more opportunities in different game scripts.


Chicago Bears at Cleveland Browns

  • Kareem Hunt: 10 carries, 81 yards, 1 TD; 6 receptions, 74 receiving yards (3.52 yards per route run)
  • Odell Beckham Jr.: 5 receptions, 77 receiving yards (16.3-yard average depth of target)
Chicago Bears Snaps Routes Run Targets Carries
WR
Darnell Mooney 44 29 3 0
Allen Robinson II 40 26 6 0
Damiere Byrd 34 23 0 0
Marquise Goodwin 10 7 1 0
TE
Cole Kmet 43 25 3 0
Jimmy Graham 7 5 1 0
Jesse James 1 1 0 0
HB
David Montgomery 37 22 4 10
Damien Williams 7 4 0 0
Khalil Herbert 2 0 0 0
Total 45 30 18 12

 

Cleveland Browns Snaps Routes Run Targets Carries
WR
Donovan Peoples-Jones 54 31 2 0
Odell Beckham Jr. 52 34 9 1
Rashard Higgins 40 25 2 0
Anthony Schwartz 27 8 1 0
Demetric Felton 11 6 3 0
TE
Austin Hooper 51 21 3 0
David Njoku 50 20 0 0
Harrison Bryant 33 10 2 0
Jordan Franks 7 0 0 0
HB
Nick Chubb 40 15 0 22
Kareem Hunt 33 21 6 10
D'Ernest Johnson 5 0 0 2
Total 81 40 28 38

Sell high on Austin Hooper: The Browns tight end caught a touchdown but continues to see close to an even split in pass routes with David Njoku. The only reason Hooper sees more snaps is that he’s the better blocker. It’s better to have a starting fantasy tight end who runs routes on his team's passing plays. He can be dropped if a trade partner can’t be found.

Start Odell Beckham Jr.: Beckham returned to action and was clearly the Browns' best receiver. He returned to his usual role today, playing almost every snap for the first three quarters before sitting out for most of the fourth quarter as Cleveland ran out the clock. He can be considered a must-start player going forward.

Don’t start Justin Fields: The Bears offense was never able to get much going on offense, with eight drives lasting five plays or fewer before ending in a punt or a turnover on downs.

Fields couldn’t get the rushing production fantasy managers hoped for because he was sacked a whopping eight times on the day. In fact, he took more sacks than the number of passes rushes he attempted combined. He might not be the starter next week if Andy Dalton is healthy.

The Bears have seemed like they were protecting Fields, and this is the kind of game they would want to protect him from. He should remain on fantasy rosters because of his potential, but he needs to show some of that potential before he gets in fantasy starting lineups.

Tackle Lifes financial Challenges. Western Southern Financial Group.
Sponsor

Fantasy Featured Tools

  • Sort projected player stats and fantasy points by position, week, and category.

    Available with

    Edge
  • Available with

    Edge
  • PFF's Fantasy Football Expected Points tool is primarily used for identifying potential over and undervalued players.

    Available with

    Elite
  • Research past fantasy performance with sortable player stats including PFF-exclusives like aDOT and fantasy points per opportunity.

    Available with

    Edge
  • PFF’s Fantasy Strength of Schedule (SoS) metric provides a league-wide, season-long view of opponent matchups for each fantasy position.

    Available with

    Edge
Pro Subscriptions

Unlock NFL Player Grades, Fantasy & NFL Draft

$9.99 / mo
$39.99 / yr

Unlock Premium Stats, PFF Greenline & DFS

$34.99 / mo
$199.99 / yr