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Sunday, September 25, 2016

FANTASY FOOTBALL WEEK 3 WRAPUP

-Terrell Pryor is now the guy for the next few weeks in the Cleveland Browns passing game and by default he had a good game Sunday in catching 8 balls for 144 yards.  The former QB has always had intriging speed and athleticism and he is now putting it to use with rookie QB Cody Kessler.  Based on the high amount of targets he is getting now with Corey Coleman injured, Pryor is worth an add as a WR 3.

-Finally fantasy owners of Buffalo Bills running back LeSean McCoy got something positive out of the veteran this season as he rushed for 110 yards and 2 touchdowns on only 17 carries Sunday.  McCoy also added 3 receptions for six more yards against a very tough Arizona defense.  The reception totals have really dropped off since his early Philly days but McCoy is the very rare workhorse back in today's fantasy football and this game shows he is not finished yet.

-In a very ugly day for the Arizona Cardinals, it was John Brown who had the best game out of the three wideouts in the starting offense and he caught 6 passes for 70 yards.  Dogged by a concussion during the summer, Brown has not done much in terms of fantasy football this season and the excellence of Larry Fitzgerald continues to overshadow him despite the latter's poor game on Sunday.  Brown should stay a backup bye-week wideout which is a drop from his preseason WR 3 status. 

-We said in this year's draft guide that Jacksonville Jaguars QB Blake Bortles was headed for a regression in his numbers this season and that is exactly what has happened early on.  It was a very ugly Sunday for Bortles as he completed 24-of-38 passes with 2 touchdowns and 3 interceptions.  Despite hooking up twice with Allen Robinson for scores, Bortles has been very turnover-prone.  Now 0-3 on the season, things are getting nasty in Jacksonville as Gus Bradley is already in trouble.

-Speaking of Robinson, he finally busted out Sunday by catching 7 passes for 57 yards and 2 scores.  Very quiet the first two weeks, Robinson benefitted from the Jags having to play catchup.  Not the PPR weapon that some other upper level fantasy football wideouts are, Robinson is a top standard league guy due to his yardage and TD prowess.  While his QB is struggling, this was a nice sign.

-It was a slow start Sunday but David Johnson eventually got going for Arizona as he rushed for 83 yards and two scores on 19 carries while also catching 3 passes for 28 more yards.  So far Johnson has fully lived up to his top 3 status for 2016 fantasy football as he has topped 100 total yards in every game this season. 

-Ryan Tannehill still makes you bang your head against the wall (like when he threw a pick-six Sunday) but the Miami passing attack is really looking up as he completed 25-of-39 passes for 319 yards with 3 scores and 2 picks.  He also lost a fumble which shows how you mistake-prine Tannehill remains and that is why it is tough to depend on him outside of two-QB formats.  You can't argue wit his starting wideouts though in Jarvis Landy and DeVante Parker. 

-Sometimes Carson Palmer can look downright hideous and you wonder if he should retire.  Such as last potseason and Week 3 when he completed only 26-of-50 passes for 261 yards and 4 INT's.  Palmer also put up  bagel in the scoring column as Rex Ryan totally befuddled the Arizona offense.  It is almost impossible not to throw for at least one score with Palmer's trio of excellent wideouts but that is exactly what happened today.  Listen everyone has a bad day at the office so we won't worry yet but at Palmer's age, he better make sure this is remedied next time out. 

-It had reached a crisis point for Cincinnati Bengals power back Jeremy Hill coming into Week 3 after two complete duds the first two weeks of the season.  In fact many cast Hill aside after last week and no one could blame those owners given how rough 2015 was and how shaky he was early on in 2016.  Well Hill re-established himself Sunday by rushing for 97 yards and 2 scores on 17 carries.  Gio Bernard did next-to-no running which was nice to see and possibly now the Bengals will have Hill be their bellcow back which is in precious short supply this season in fantasy football.  Hill is now back in our good graces for Week 4 but he has to keep it up. 

-The Carolina Panthers offense got swallowed whole by the Purple People Eater 2.0 Minnesota Vikings defense.  The biggest victim was ace wideout Kelvin Benjamin who caught ZERO passes and was targeted only once.  It was a spectacularly awful performance from Benjamin and this just shows you how dominant the Vikes' defense was.  Don't blow this one out of proportion though as Benjamin was terrific in Week 1 and 2 and the Vikings defense is making a lot of people look bad this season. 

-Demaryuis Thomas was knocked endlessly in the summer and into the season as a guy who should not be considered a WR 1 anymore given the uncertain QB situation in Denver.  Well those worries seem to be working out just fine as Thomas caught 6 balls for 100 yards and a touchdown Sunday.  One of the catches was for a 55-yard score which skewed things some but it is good to see him acting like a WR 1 again.  While he is likely to still finish as a WR 2, we can feel a bit better about this situation now.

-As good as Thomas was on Sunday, his teammate Emmanuel Sanders was even better as he caught 9 passes for 117 yards and 2 socres.  Sanders was doing his PPR loving thing with short and intermedate receptions and his rapport with QB Trevor Siemian.  That makes sense as a young QB will look for shorter outlets which is where Sanders fits perfectly. 

-The Denver Broncos might really have something here with Semian as he completed 23-of-35 throws for 312 yards and 4 touchdowns.  Siemian was incredible Sunday and he really is starting to get comfortable in the offense.  We could be getting to a point now given the excellent pair of starting wideouts that Siemian should be picked up and uses as a backup who could start weekly is this keeps going. 

-It was like old times for Tennessee Titans running back DeMarco Murray as he rushed for 114 yards on 16 carries and one score while also catching 5 passes for 41 yards.  What the Titans are doing and why Murray is going well right now is that the are letting him take the handoff and go straight upfield instead of to the sides like Chip Kelly had him due last season.  Clearly it is working and now Murray is beginning to save his fantasy football career. Considering that Murray is one of handful of bellcow backs left in the game, he could end up being a monster value if he can keep playing like this. 

-It was another typical day at the office for Green Bay QB Aaron Rodgers as he completed 15-of-24 passes for 205 yards and 4 touchdowns.  Nothing else really needs to be said here that hasn't already been talked about in terms of how spectacularly great Rodgers is and his status as a top 12 fantasy football player is back in play. 

-There were video-game nunbers coming out of Detroit Lions widoeut Marvin Jones as he did a garbage-time special in collecting 6 passes for 205 yards and 2 touchowns.  That is two monster games in a row now for Jones who we said was set to be the value WR play of the year and so far he is living up to that label.  Wow. 

-Nothing doing for Kansas City Chiefs wideout Jeremy Maclin who caught only 4 balls for 35 yards in the team's win over the New York Jets.  Not much was needed to be done on offense as Ryan Fitzpatrick was literally giving the football away all game long.  Maclin remains a low-end WR 2. 

-Another week and another touchdown for San Diego Chargers feature back Melvin Gordon.  Gordon picked up his fourth rushing score of the year Sunday by picking up 35 yards on 16 carries while also catching 4 balls for 43 more yards.  It was nice to see the receptions as Gordon is now the full bore back in the San Diego backfield with Danny Woodhead out for the season.  The rushing average was very poor which was especially troubling against the weak Indianapolis Colts defense though and that makes it two weeks in a row Gordon has failed to impress there.  While the touchdowns are nice, Gordon is still a work in progress with his running. 

-Kelvin Benjamin had company in the receiving bagel category as Tyler Lockett failed to grab one pass Sunday despite the Seattle Seahawks having a big offense game.  Both Doug Baldwin and Jimmy Graham had monster days but Lockett was a complete non-factor.  It is time to cut him.

-With Donte Moncrief out for the next 4-6 weeks, there were more passes up for grabs among the Colts receivers and that bodes well the next few weeks for T.Y. Hilton who grabbed 8 passes for 174 yards and one score against the San Diego Chargers.  Hilton's stock is pointing upwards.

-Eric Decker was part of the New York Jets abomination Sunday as he caught just one pass for 31 yards agains the Kansas City Chiefs.  Nothing went right for the Jets so this was a complete throw away game.  Keep starting Decker as your WR 2.

-How about Jimmy Graham?  It looked like Graham was back in New Orleans as he caught 6 passes for 100 yards and a touchdown.  This was the first positive game for Graham pretty much since his days as a Saint but the immediate injury to QB Russell Wilson tempers things a bit.  Still given all the injuries to hit tight ends lately, Graham should be picked up this week.

-I mean you couldn't have scripted a more horrific outing than what we saw out of New York Jets QB Ryan Fitzpatrick on Sunday.  He actually managed to throw six interceptions in the game, with in all fairness three of them being deflected.  Still this was hideous and it is the kind of outing that gets people whispering about a change.  That is not going to happen here though as Fitzpatrick was excellent just the week before in dissecting the Buffalo Bills defense.

-San Francisco 49ers running back Carlos Hyde did a garbage-time special in rushing for 103 yards and two touchdowns on 21 carries while also catching a pass for two yards.  Hyde has no receiving skills but his running is solid and he works as your RB 2 in standard formats.

-Doug Baldwin has quickly shown this season that his insane second-half of 2015 has carried over into 2016 as he caught 8 passes for 164 yards and a score.  While the QB injury to Wilson is concerning, we have seen quite a bit of evidence to have him on the border of the WR 1  realm this season. 


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