Start and Sit Week 3

Welcome to Week 3 of the 2022-2023 NFL Season! Week 2 was wild with big injuries and suspensions, yet we're starting to see who we can trust, and who might be a bust.  You're starting your studs no matter what. Don't get cute by sitting them over players you see here.  This article focuses on who we feel can give you an edge this week. 

Starters at Quarterback:

Kirk Cousins, QB - Minnesota Vikings

Kirk Cousins looked awful against the surging Philadelphia Eagles in primetime, so you're thinking we're nuts for saying "Start this man!" The Vikings are licking their wounds and getting ready to face the upstart Detroit Lions at home this week. Cousins has a 119.9 QBR in his career against Detroit, and the Lions have given up the 6th highest fantasy points to the QB position this season.   - Matt Miles @DirtyAirFC

Jimmy Garoppolo, QB - San Francisco 49ers

Jimmy Garoppolo is back in at QB after Trey Lance suffered a horrific ankle injury. Right away, the arguably most handsome quarterback in football proceeded to rush in a touchdown in the 49ers rout of the Seahawks in Week 2.  Despite being 8th best against quarterbacks, Denver's defense has faced only Geno Smith and Davis Mills.  Look for Jimmy GQ to shine bright Sunday Night.  - Matt 

Matthew Stafford, QB - Los Angeles Rams

After getting dropped like a bad habit in Week 1 by the Buffalo Bills, Matthew Stafford bounced back like a champ versus the Falcons last week. Stafford threw for 272 yards, three touchdowns, and a couple of interceptions. This week Stafford will continue this roll and light up the Cardinals as they have currently allowed the most fantasy points to quarterbacks. So start Stafford with confidence in all league formats. - Leo G. @smooth1074

Ryan Tannehill, QB - Tennessee Titans

On Monday Night Football, Ryan Tannehill faced the harsh reality that if you play against the Bills defense you will be in for a rough outing. Boy did Tannehill get slammed as he could only muster up 117 yards passing and two interceptions. Luckily for Tannehill, he gets to face the Raiders in Week 3 as they have allowed both quarterbacks they have faced so far to pass for over 275 yards and have multiple touchdowns. If you are in need of a streamer or are in a deep league the veteran quarterback may get you the win this week. - Leo 

SITTERS at Quarterback:

Carson Wentz, QB - Washington Commanders

Carson Wentz has been on a tear since becoming the 'Top Commander' in Washington, DC, however, the flaws of his game appeared against a Lions defense that isn't very good.  Wentz was sacked five times, with an interception and a fumble in Week 2, and his propensity to hold on to the football too long will be magnified by an Eagles defense that just manhandled Kirk Cousins with two sacks and three interceptions. - Matt 

Tom Brady, QB - Tampa Bay Buccaneers

The GOAT Tom Brady commands respect no matter who sets up on the line with him on any given Sunday. This past week against the New Orleans Saints, however, showed the stubborn mule's humanity.  Despite not turning the ball over, Brady just didn't do much without his weapons.  A stat line of 18/34 with 190 yards and a touchdown stat line with a lone sack proved it was strictly a game management day to preserve a W. Facing the run-heavy Packers at home, it's likely Brady is in a repeat role missing key WRs.  Smash the under and sit Brady. - Matt 

Russell Wilson, QB - Denver Broncos

If one had to describe Russell Wilson's performance so far, it would have to be mediocre at best. In the season opener as he returned to his old stomping grounds Wilson was able able to toss for 340 yards but only one touchdown, which was all Jerry Jeudy yards after the catch and getting past defenders for the score. But last week the veteran quarterback had a disappointing outing against the Texans and now will face the 49ers defense that has allowed the fourth-fewest fantasy points to quarterbacks this season. The 49ers have always given Wilson a hard time during his years in Seattle so this may be a week to consider sitting Wilson. Furthermore, he doesn’t make plays with his legs anymore either. - Leo


Starters at Wide Receiver:

Rashod Bateman, WR - Baltimore Ravens

We're starting to see solid usage for Rashod Bateman as we head into week 3.  He's still rotated out enough that he's not in elite usage territory but with last week's 4/108/1 line on 7 targets, we may see Bateman on the field more this week against the Chiefs. - Matt 

Brandon Aiyuk - WR - San Francisco 49ers

Brandon Aiyuk and the Jimmy G connection are back again!  With a 33% target share, most routes run, and a banged-up Broncos secondary, look for Aiyuk to be a fringe WR1 this week. - Matt

Amon-Ra St. Brown, WR - Detriot Lions

Now comes Amon-Ra St. Brown, who has been on a serious tear dating back to last season. St. Brown has had eight straight games with at least 10 targets and has scored touchdowns in seven of those eight games. The Vikings just let three Eagles wide receivers score double-digit fantasy points this past Monday Night, so look for St. Brown to feast on the Vikings' secondary come Sunday. - Leo


Josh Palmer, WR - Los Angeles Chargers

Another young receiver that should be considered for starting this week is Josh Palmer. Coming into the season Palmer was listed as the third starting wideout on the team. Now that Keenan Allen is still dealing with a strained hamstring and is still listed as questionable I would throw Palmer back in the starting line-up as a WR3 or Flex, and enjoy him producing double digits fantasy points again for your fantasy rosters. - Leo


Sitters at Wide Receiver: 

Drake London, WR - Atlanta Falcons

Call this one a hot take that could blow up in our face, but Drake London could see a step backward away in Seattle.  Seattle has given up the 12th fewest fantasy points per game to WRs this season, and the under has hit in seven of the last nine Seattle home games. Seattle has also been terrible against tight ends with the 9th most points given up to the position, which could wake up Kyle Pitts. - Matt 

Drake London-Kyle Pitts tandem gives Falcons hope

Amari Cooper, WR - Cleveland Browns

On paper, this looks like a smash spot for Amari Cooper.  A home game against Pittsburgh, who has given up the 5th most points to wide receivers. Cleveland smashed them over in their first two games. Yet the devil is in the details.  Pittsburgh also gives up the 10th most points to running backs.  Weather looks to be a factor, with a strong cold front ushering in the rain, wind, and much cooler temps. With Pittsburgh giving up the 11th fewest points to the QB, look for a muted passing game with lots of run plays and Cooper largely scripted out of the game. - Matt 

D.J. Moore, WR - Carolina Panthers

Baker Mayfield has been trying to get these wide receivers more involved, especially D.J. Moore. Week1 was a total dud for Moore. In Week 2 Moore mirrored the same stat line as the season opener with three receptions on six targets for 43 yards. The only difference was Moore scored a touchdown. Unfortunately for Moore, the Panthers face a tough Saints secondary that should slow down their passing game. Marshon Lattimore will probably be shadowing Moore all game long so you may want to sit him this week if you can. - Leo 

Chase Claypool, WR - Pittsburgh Steelers

How can anyone in their right mind trust Chase Claypool in their starting line-ups this year? He’s another receiver that has just averaged six targets a game but has failed to reach 30 yards in either of his first two contests. Claypool has to show something first before you can trust him in your starting line-up. - Leo 

Steelers' Chase Claypool on where he stands among NFL wideouts: 'I know I'm  a top-three receiver' | Fox News

Starters at Running Back:

Miles Sanders, RB - Philadelphia Eagles

It looks like we're getting a serving of 2019 Miles Sanders.  The top back in the committee put up another solid week with a 17/80/0 line and three receptions for six yards.  With the Commanders allowing the 6th most fantasy points to RBs, look for another consistent RB2 day out of Sanders in Week 3. - Matt

Jeff Wilson, Jr., RB - San Francisco 49ers

Unfortunately, the vultures were out in San Francisco.  Jeff Wilson, Jr. performed just like a typical Shanahan back.  18/84/0 on the rushing side with 2/19/0 on the receiving side.  Unfortunately, he also scored like a typical Shanahan back.  Jimmy G took one of the touchdown opportunities, while Kyle Jusczyk took another touchdown. Look for RB2 floor with RB1 upside this week against the Rams on Monday night. - Matt


Tony Pollard, RB - Dallas Cowboys

It seems as if there may be a changing of the guard in the Cowboys backfield. Although Ezekiel Elliot is still the starter, as we progress through the season Tony Pollard seems to be gaining touches as the weeks go by. He’s an excellent receiver out of the backfield and has some juice to his game. Pollard faces the Giants who just allowed Christian McCaffrey to rush for 100 yards, so I can see both Elliot and Pollard having very productive games this week. Pollard can be a useful Flex play in deeper leagues. - Leo


Cam Akers, RB - Los Angeles Rams

Another player that most fantasy managers wanted to throw to the curb after Week 1 was Cam Akers. But luckily for those fantasy managers that were patient were rewarded with a decent game from Akers. Akers out-touched Darrell Henderson 17 to 10 after only receiving three carries in the season opener. The Cardinals have given up the ninth most fantasy points to running backs so far this season. With the Rams having the possibility to build a big lead Akers, should be called upon to carry the load to keep the Cardinals off the field. Akers could produce low RB2 to high RB3 fantasy points on Sunday. - Leo 

Sitters at Running Back:

Kareem Hunt, RB - Cleveland Browns

Dovetailing into the discussion with Amari Cooper, this game looks like Kareem Hunt could see a limited role. Bad weather could see Nick Chubb have a monster game and hold the Steelers at bay nearly single-handedly. This could be a lopsided game and Hunt might not be used nearly as much. - Matt

Ezekiel Elliott, RB - Dallas Cowboys

Ezekiel Elliott has had feast or famine stats with the Giants over the years.  Last year at MetLife, Zeke posted his best game of the season with 117 yards and 2 TDs. Zeke has also rushed for 53 yards or less in his first two games and has negative seven yards receiving on the year.  Inconsistency is the death of fantasy football teams, and I'd rather sit Zeke. - Matt

Dallas Cowboys: Ezekiel Elliott misses practice due to injury

Chase Edmonds/Raheem Mostert, RB - Miami Dolphins

Between Chase Edmonds and Raheem Mostert sharing touches and the Dolphins facing the Bills' top-5 rush defense, you may want to sit both running backs this week. Look elsewhere this week for starting running back options if you can. - Leo

Devin Singletary, RB - Buffalo Bills

Don’t look now but the Miami Dolphins have allowed the fewest fantasy points to running backs this season. Additionally, over the last six games, Devin Singletary has averaged 45.7 rushing yards per game and scored only one touchdown in that same span versus the Dolphins. The running back is also splitting touches with Zach Moss, James Cook, and the occasional Josh Allen run when necessary. Therefore bench Singletary in Week 3 and wait until another time to utilize the veteran. - Leo

Starters at Tight End:

Logan Thomas, TE - Washington Commanders

One of the biggest takeaways I saw in the Eagles/Vikings game was the targets and opportunities, Irv Smith Jr. had against the Eagles secondary. Logan Thomas has been a steady target of Carson Wentz, with 11 targets, 6 catches, 82 yards, and a touchdown in the first two weeks.  Look for a nice floor with a touchdown potential with Thomas this week. - Matt

Irv Smith Jr., TE - Minnesota Vikings

After only being targeted twice and having a big goose egg in the season opener, Irv Smith Jr. wound up with eight targets in Week 2. Smith Jr. racked up five receptions for 36 yards and a touchdown. The usage is what makes Smith a tight end to start in Week 3 because the Vikings will be battling the Lions. This game has an excellent chance of being a high-scoring shootout. Start Smith as he should be posting TE1 numbers this week for fantasy managers. -Leo

Gerald Everett, TE Chargers

Could it finally be that we have found a team that will continuously tap into Gerald Everett's potential? After years of inconsistent play, Everett has come out of the gate blazing. In his first two games with the Chargers, Justin Herbert has been looking his way early and often. Maybe the Keenan Allen injury has helped him get targeted more frequently but in a year where fantasy managers are looking for answers at tight end, Everett is a player to start on a weekly basis moving forward. The Jaguars have been defending opposing tight ends well but the tight end should post low TE 1 numbers this week. - Leo

Tyler Conklin, TE Jets

Another tight end that’s been targeted early in the season has been Tyler Conklin. Conklin has averaged eight targets per game so far this season and that should continue moving forward. The tight end should be considered a starting option in deeper leagues for Week 3. -Leo


Sitters at Tight Ends:

Mike Gesicki, TE - Miami Dolphins

One of the Dolphins we're not comfortable starting is Mike Gesicki.  Despite the nice final line last week, 5 targets on the season make Gesicki a very TD-dependent play. - Matt

Cole Kmet, TE - Chicago Bears

Cole Kmet has been a straight-up bust so far this season. I was willing to give him a pass in Week 1 due to the monsoon the Bears played in. After this past week, Kmet just had one target like the previous week and had no reception again. One has to just move on and start someone else in the meantime while the Bears get their shit together. - Leo


Starters at Defense/Special Teams:

New York Giants Defense/Special Teams 

The New York Giants D/ST is a sneaky good play against the traveling Cowboys this week.  A low total points implied and a middle-of-the-road ranking makes the Giants a serviceable streamer this week. - Matt

Giants defense, Graham Gano shine in big victory over Panthers

Cincinnati Bengals Defense/Special Teams

Well now the Jets offense had an awakening last, but I don’t think they can do it two weeks in a row. The Bengals Defense will look to put some pressure on Joe Flacco to cause some turnovers on Sunday. - Leo


Sitters at Defense/Special Teams:

Buffalo Bills D/ST

The hottest defense is now facing one of the hottest offenses in a potential shoot-out in a very hot Miami stadium. You're probably not sitting Buffalo Bills D/ST, but definitely temper your expectations from last week's blowout in Buffalo. - Matt

Tampa Bay Buccaneers D/ST

Although the Buccaneers' Defense has been feasting on opposing offenses so far, this week they face a Packers team that got the offense rolling in Week 2 and also started taking care of the ball. Unless they can cause some turnovers in Week 3. I believe the Buccaneers will have just an average game against Aaron Rodgers and the Packers. - Leo

Matt Miles wants you to win in fantasy football.  Follow him at @dirtyairfc on Twitter!


If you would like to discuss this further or have any questions feel free to reach out to me on Twitter at @smooth1074.

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