Fantasy Football Must Starts Week 3

By James Collier

We’re into Week 3 of the NFL season which means if you haven’t lost a player for the year already then you must have done something to please the fantasy gods. With several high profile players across all positions either being ruled out or highly questionable entering into the weekend games, our start/sit decisions are getting more difficult. 

But we are here to help with some players that we think you just have to plug into your lineups this week.

Last Week's Picks

Last week was a bit of a mixed bag for our picks but those that hit, really hit. Rhys, Rob and myself (to a lesser extent) had some wide receivers smash their ECR ranks and all score over 20 PPR points. Mags was a little unlucky with Anthony Richardson leaving the game with a concussion early on after getting off to a hot start.

  • James Collier: Tyler Lockett (ECR Rank 21, Actual Rank 6)
  • Tom Strachan: Jahan Dotson (28, 81)
  • Rob Ward: Christian Kirk (33, 13)
  • Rhys Knott: Josh Reynolds (75, 9)
  • TFFC: Luke Musgrave (15, 37)
  • Mags: Anthony Richardson (10, 19)

Amari Cooper vs Tennessee Titans

My pick of the week is Cleveland Browns wide receiver Amari Cooper. This pick is as much about Cooper himself as it is his opposition this week. Cooper carried an injury into the Browns matchup with the Steelers and still came away 90 yards on seven receptions. The Browns just lost their RB1 and although we were all clamoring to grab Jerome Ford this week, maybe the end result is that they just don’t run the ball as much going forward. They are going to want to see significant improvement from Deshaun Watson and this is the perfect get right game against a defense allowing the third most fantasy points to wide receivers so far this season. Keenan Allen was the WR1 against them last week and in Week 1 the Saints had two top 12 fantasy receivers. Matchups don’t really come much better than this.

Kenneth Walker @Carolina Panthers (Tom Strachan)

This week Tom (@NFL_TStrack and @TheFFSanctuary) is backing Seahawks running back Kenneth Walker in a strong matchup against the Panthers. 

“If the Seahawks were planning on phasing Kenneth Walker out they certainly haven’t looked like it so far, giving Walker a combined 34 touches in the first two weeks. The Seahawks play the Panthers in Week 3 who are allowing running backs to rush for 5.2 yards per carry, which is the sixth-highest amount in the league. The Panthers are a team finding their feet and likely won’t be able to threaten the Seahawks in the same way the Detroit Lions did a week ago. Walker projects to have a very favorable script in this game and could be one of the best plays of the week.”

Russell Wilson @ Miami Dolphins (Rob Ward)

Rob’s (@robwardrw) pick this week might be a bit of a surprise but Russell Wilson somehow finds himself as one of the top scoring fantasy quarterbacks after two weeks of the season. And with a shootout in Miami on the cards, could he be in for another big fantasy week? 

“The only thing unlimited since giddy fan girl Nathaniel Hackett squealed Wilson’s name in the opening press conference in Denver has been the former Seattle quarterback’s penchant for terrible football. It’s not so much been ‘Let Russ Cook’ as ‘Don’t Let Russ Cook It Up’ (or something like that). However, I think there are green shoots emerging from the Mile High Turf and not just the legalised cannabis you can enjoy in Colorado. Whisper it quietly, but Russ has looked better through two games under pugnacious pudgy Payton and sits QB5 on the year. The Dolphins offense should have their way with a Broncos defense that just shipped 35 points to Washington (!?!) and I think Wilson will need to throw to keep up. With ‘Double J’ Jerry Jeudy back fit & deep threat rookie Marvin Mims emerging last week, Russ should be able to get you to 20 points. In the 2023 quarterback landscape, that’s a comfortable QB1 and, to celebrate, I’ll be doing high knees on my 4 hour Ryanair to Gran Canaria.”

Sam LaPorta @ Atlanta Falcons (Rhys Knott)

After tipping Josh Reynolds’ breakout game last week, Rhys (@wrhyswrites) is now looking at his teammate, rookie tight end Sam LaPorta. LaPorta has had a solid start to his career with 102 yards on 10 receptions and that’s enough to have him sitting as the TE4 on the season. With his usage increasing (in Week 1 he ran routes on 72% of the Lions’ snaps and Week 2 that increased to 81%) and a few teammates struggling with injury, Rhys is backing him to be an even bigger part of the offense this week.

Zay Flowers vs Indianapolis Colts (The Fantasy Football Combine)

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The Fantasy Football Combine are also tipping a rookie to have a good week. Zay Flowers has started the season well, averaging 14.3 PPR points per game to start his career. And he looks set to have another productive game against the Colts. 

“The Colts secondary is one to target after they allowed two top 20 weeks to wide receivers in each of their opening games. In Week 1 Calvin Ridley was the WR6 and Zay Jones was WR18 and in Week 2 it was Nico Collins WR5 and Tank Dell WR19. Their run defense has been better and with Odell Beckham not 100%, Flowers should continue to see consistent volume. He’s currently the WR27 according to FantasyPros ECR but could easily finish top 20.”

Drake London vs Detroit Lions (Alastair Cook)

This week we have Alastair Cook (@FFDynastyGrill) from the Fantasy Wildcard and @WildcardDFS closing us out. Ali’s tipping a big week from Falcons receiver Drake London. 

“The Atlanta Falcons are a headache when it comes to fantasy (unless you own Bijan Robinson) but I have confidence that Drake London will have a huge game in week 3. Where the Falcons passing attack can be unpredictable, what is 100% predictable is Jared Goff putting up a ton of points in home games.

London coming off a bounce back against the Packers is primed to be a big factor for the Falcons against a struggling Lion secondary conceding the 7th most passing yards and 3rd most passing TDs. This while they’ve been really solid against the run, only giving up 53.5 yards per game to running backs.

Arthur Smith will want to be stubborn and use his two running backs over and over but the air attack is where they’ll find the most success so Desmond Ridder will have to open it up and London will be the big beneficiary.”

That’s all from us for this week. Thanks for reading and as always, thanks to everyone for their choices! 

Feature image credit: AP Photo/John Bazemore


Lead Fantasy Football Analyst

A Washington fan since the early 2010’s, James had no choice but to turn to fantasy football in search of happiness – and it wasn’t long until it became an obsession. You can follow him on Twitter @jamesc294.