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In The Spotlight - Week 3 In Review

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More articles from Matt Wilson

  • Jamaal Charles Powers Chiefs to 3-0 with 172 Total Yards & 1TD
  • C am Newton Finally Explodes; Racks up 4 Total TDs
  • LeSean McCoy Continues To Run Wild
  • The Texans Offense Flops Against the Ravens
  • The Giants Offense MIA Versus the Panthers
  • More High-Profile Injuries
  • The New England Offense Rebounds
  • Kaepernick & the 49ers Disappoint Again
  • Antonio Brown Racks Up 196 Yards & 2 TDs
  • Trent Richardson Hits Pay Dirt In Colts Debut
  • The Jets Offense Scores 27 Points. Seriously?
  • Another Monster Game From Jimmy Graham
Game Summaries & Fantasy Commentary:

Thursday Night Game:

                           

KANSAS CITY CHIEFS

26

(3-0)

PHILADELPHIA EAGLES

16

(1-2)

Final


Fantasy Focus – Kansas City Chiefs: Jamaal Charles turned in his best game of the season, amassing 172 total yards and one rushing score (the Chiefs only offensive touchdown of the game) on 27 total touches (which included seven catches) against the Eagles’ porous defense. On the season, Charles has scored in three straight contests while averaging a fantasy friendly 23 total touches and 125 total yards per outing.

Fantasy owners had expected a better game from Alex Smith, who was averaging two touchdown passes per game coming into this contest. He completed 22 of his 35 throws but didn’t toss any touchdown passes. Smith piled up 273 passing yards thanks to relying mainly on dump-off passes to Charles and underneath throws to Donnie Avery.

Speaking of Avery, he was the surprise standout among the receivers. Avery compiled seven catches for 141 yards on seven looks and looked like a stud thanks in part to some poor tackling by the Eagles. Meanwhile, Dwayne Bowe was the surprise fantasy dud with just one catch for four yards on three targets.

Key Injuries: None

Fantasy Tip: After watching Smith fail to toss at least one touchdown pass against a leaky Philadelphia secondary, it’s a no-brainer that he shouldn’t be trusted as anything more than a fantasy backup right now. Smith is operating like a game-manager, which is why he isn’t forcing the ball down the field to Bowe in sometimes tight coverage.

Since the Chiefs defense is playing surprisingly well and keeping games close, and Charles has been super productive, why should Kansas City risk letting Smith sling it down the field regularly? Until the Chiefs take more steps to get the ball to Bowe, he will offer only wishy-washy flex or fantasy WR3 value.

Waiver Wire Prospects: I doubt Avery will rack up another 100-yard game this year. However, I think he offers depth value, because he is the third option in the Chiefs passing attack right now. I doubt you’ll find the Kansas City team defense in your free-agent pool, but it never hurts to check.  

Fantasy Focus – Philadelphia Eagles: The Philadelphia offense played a surprisingly sloppy game. The short week obviously didn’t help, but the Eagles clearly had their share of struggles against a Kansas City defense that was ranked No. 8 coming into this week.

LeSean McCoy powered the offense with 158 rushing yards and one rushing score on 20 carries (no catches), and endeared himself to Eagles' fans and fantasy owners by returning to the field after he had suffered a sprained right ankle. With three weeks in the books, McCoy is averaging a whopping 171 total yards and 23 total touches per game, and he has hit pay dirt twice.

Michael Vick was sacked six times and pressured almost non-stop by the Chiefs. Vick completed just 13 of his 30 passes for 201 yards and one touchdown against two picks, but the Eagles field general boosted his fantasy production with 95 rushing yards on five carries.

Because Vick was under duress, Philadelphia’s deep passing game sputtered. DeSean Jackson hauled in three balls for 62 yards on seven looks, which snapped his two-game scoring streak. Vick settled for shorter throws to Jason Avant, who hauled in five balls for 87 yards and one touchdown on eight looks. Riley Cooper (2-29-0 on seven targets), Brent Celek (2-18-0 on five looks) and Zach Ertz (1-5-0 on one target)

Key Injury: LeSean McCoy (sprained right ankle)

Fantasy Tip: Cooper has hands of stone, and it doesn’t look like Celek and Ertz will be used regularly from week to week. Can Avant emerge as a desperately needed second option in the Philadelphia passing attack? Don’t laugh – the Eagles need somebody to step up when opposing defenses put the clamps on Jackson. Keep an eye on Avant.

Waiver Wire Prospects: None



Early Sunday Afternoon Games:

HOUSTON TEXANS

    9

(2-1)

BALTIMORE RAVENS

   30

(2-1)

Final


Fantasy Focus – Houston Texans: This dud outing from the Houston offense shouldn’t surprise you. Granted, the Ravens defense played an outstanding game, but the Texans were coming off two emotional victories, so they were due for a letdown.  

The split in carries between Arian Foster and Ben Tate was closer to 50/50 this week. Foster toted the rock 12 times for 54 yards and caught one ball for minus two yards, while Tate rushed nine times for 36 yards and hauled in three passes for seven yards. However, the Texans fell behind 24-9 in the third quarter and had to abandon their trademark running game.

The Matt Schaub-led passing attack couldn’t save the day. Schaub was sacked three times and under constant pressure. He went 25-of-35 for 194 yards with no touchdown passes and one pick that was returned for a touchdown in the second quarter. Schaub also struggled mightily after Andre Johnson (5-36-0 on six targets) left the game in the third quarter with a bruised shin.

Rookie DeAndre Hopkins topped all Houston receivers with six catches for 60 yards (seven targets). Owen Daniels (5-29-0 on a team-high nine looks) had a surprisingly bad game. The Ravens had been very soft against the tight end position coming into this one.

Key Injury: Andre Johnson (bruised shin)

Fantasy Tip: If Johnson isn’t healthy enough to play next week, Hopkins becomes a must-start fantasy WR3 with upside. Keshawn Martin likely would get a start in Johnson’s place, but he would be a very risky fantasy option.

Waiver Wire Prospects: None

 

Fantasy Focus – Baltimore Ravens: Ray Rice (hip) was inactive, but Bernard Pierce filled in competently. The big bruiser rushed 24 times for 65 yards and scored on a one-yard run in the third quarter. Pierce also caught two balls for seven yards.

With the running game working and the Ravens defense putting the clamps on the Texans offense, Flacco did the game-manager thing. He completed 16 of his 24 passes for 171 yards with no scoring strikes or picks.

Following a quiet first half, Torrey Smith amassed five receptions for 92 yards on nine targets. Although he hasn’t found the end zone so far in 2013, Smith has compiled at least 85 receiving yards in three straight outings. Dallas Clark made up for his stink-bomb Week 2 fantasy outing (only one catch) by racking up four receptions for 46 yards on seven looks.

Marlon Brown caught just two balls for six yards on three looks, which snapped his two-game scoring streak. Flacco favored Smith and Clark this week, and the Baltimore passing attack didn’t see much action in the second half.

Key Injuries: None

Fantasy Tip: Stay patient with Brown. Don’t forget – he is a rookie.

Waiver Wire Prospect: Check for Dallas Clark. An impatient owner in your league might have dropped him last week. It looks like Clark will have at least low-end fantasy TE2 value.



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