Scoring rebounded last week, but more key injuries complicate lineups. After targeting the top waiver wire adds, knowing which players have appealing matchups this week can help you maximize your odds of winning. Our Fantasy Football Start ‘Em Sit ‘Em Week 3 explores those players and others that should be avoided in Week 3.
Kirk Cousins (Minnesota Vikings)
Cousins delivered an impressive performance last week, accumulating 28.56 fantasy points. That ranked him as the second-best quarterback (QB2) for the week. Cousins, alongside Tua Tagovailoa, is one of just two quarterbacks to surpass 700 passing yards over the first two weeks of the season. He currently shares the league lead in passing touchdowns with six, tying with Jordan Love.
Furthermore, Cousins is set to face the Chargers, a defense that has allowed the most passing yards in the league (666) so far. Considering the high-scoring potential of this home game, Cousins deserves a spot in your starting lineup.
Deshaun Watson (Cleveland Browns)
Watson has yet to experience his breakout moment in the 2023 season. But Week 3 presents a favorable opportunity in a great matchup with a scheme that will have to change after losing Nich Chubb on Monday.
The Titans’ defense is notably more resilient against the run than the pass, ranking in the bottom 10 in pass DVOA (defense-adjusted value over average) but in the top 10 for run DVOA. After two games, Tennessee ranks fourth against the run but plummets to 28th versus the pass.
This could be a blowup spot for the Chub-less Browns passing attack.
Jordan Love (Green Bay Packers)
Love has posted top-5 fantasy numbers through two games, but he’s kind of doing it with smoke and mirrors. He ranks just 26th in attempts and 23rd with a meager 396 passing yards. That lofty touchdown rate that is supporting his fantasy value isn’t something that sustainable.
This week, Love will be challenged at home facing a formidable New Orleans Saints defense. The Saints have allowed more than 20 points in a league-best 10 consecutive road contests. Overall, New Orleans boasts the NFL’s No. 4 defense and has surrendered the seventh-fewest passing yards.
View Love as a modest QB2 in SupeFlex leagues, but one to avoid wherever possible.
Gus Edwards (Baltimore Ravens)
In their first game without J.K. Dobbins, the Ravens leaned on Justice Hill for most snaps (54% to Edwards’ 46%) and high-impact situations. However, Edwards made a significant impact, outgaining Hill on his 10 carries with 62 yards compared to Hill’s 11 carries and three catches for 53 yards.
Hill hasn’t practiced all week and is considered unlikely to suit up. If Justice Hill sits with a toe injury expect the Gus Bus to roll against the Colts at home.
Brian Robinson (Washington Commanders)
Last week, Robinson commanded 55 percent of the snaps, received 18 out of 20 running back carries, ran 17 routes, and saw three targets. He amassed an impressive 129 yards, two touchdowns, and 28.9 fantasy points in the win, leading all running backs in fantasy points for the week.
Facing the Bills in Week 3, a team that has struggled against inside runs, Robinson is poised for another strong performance. Also, Antonio Gibson has become an afterthought in Eric Bieniemy’s new offense. Robinson is quietly operating as a featured back and should be considered a “must start” until that changes.
Considering how well he’s played, it might not.
James Conner (Arizona Cardinals)
While James Conner had a solid Week 2 against the Giants, the matchup against the Cowboys in Week 3 is awful. The Cowboys have demonstrated their ability to limit opposing running backs, and their defense could be one of the best in recent memory.
It’s advisable to bench most running backs facing the Cowboys, who rank first against the pass and run. Conner’s snap rate and volume are appealing. However, he’s going to struggle in a game where the Cardinals have a league-worst implied total of just 15 points.
Rachaad White (Tampa Bay Buccaneers)
White’s performance is heavily reliant on volume, and he faces the Eagles in Week 3, a team that has allowed just 82 rushing yards to running backs this season. With an inefficient running style and a tough run defense, White is a player to avoid in this matchup.
Amari Cooper (Cleveland Browns)
Cooper performed well in Week 2 despite being considered very questionable with a groin injury. He recorded seven catches for 90 yards on 10 targets. That performance solidified Cooper’s standing as a reliable No. 1 wideout who can be relied upon each and every week.
This week, Cooper and the Browns face the Titans, who have struggled against opposing receivers in their previous two games. Only four teams have allowed more passing yards than the Titans so far in 2023. With a favorable home matchup, Cooper has the potential for a big outing.
George Pickens (Pittsburgh Steelers)
In the absence of Diontae Johnson in Week 3 against Cleveland, George Pickens enjoyed significant involvement in the offense. Pickens saw a career-high 10 targets from Kenny Pickett and came up big on Monday Night Football against the Browns.
Pickens responded with a career-best 127 receiving yards and a touchdown. The Raiders’ defense has allowed three receivers to score at least 13.2 PPR points this season, making Pickens a strong start in all leagues for this road matchup.
Marquise Brown (Arizona Cardinals)
As mentioned with Conner, I am pretty much benching the Cardinals this week. Brown showed promise in Week 2 against the Giants, but his Week 3 matchup against Dallas is challenging.
The Cowboys’ pass defense is the best in the NFL this season, ranking first in yards, points allowed, yards per attempt, and even sack rate. Arizona is the biggest underdog on the slate and also has the lowest implied total.
At best, Brown is a marginal starter in three-receiver leagues for Week 3. But don’t out of your way to force him into lineups based on draft capital.
Kyle Pitts (Atlanta Falcons)
I know, I know but hear me out…Pitts faces the Lions, a team that has already surrendered 175 yards to tight ends, the most in the NFL. And that was despite facing the Travis Kelce-less Chiefs and the Seahawks.
Pitts, undoubtedly the most talented tight end Detroit has faced this season, benefits from an indoor game against an offense expected to put up points. If Pitts struggles in this matchup, it may be time to reevaluate his fantasy potential. But for now, he deserves another chance in a favorable matchup.
It’s now or never for the highly-coveted fantasy tight end.
Dalton Kincaid (Buffalo Bills)
Kincaid has had a nice start to his career with 9 catches through two weeks. Dawson Knox though has been the Bill tight end to own so far with three red-zone targets and a touchdown grab to boot.
Also, Buffalo faces a really tough Washington defense that ranks third against opposing tight ends so far this season. View Kincaid as a lesser TE2 in a game that could be lower scoring than anticipated.