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ON SECOND THOUGHT: Week 3

Week 3 just might be the most important week of the fantasy football season.  No matter your record, it is a must win in order to stay in the hunt or solidify yourself as a playoff contender.

With two weeks under our belt we are starting to see how each team is utilizing their players, but let’s not relax just yet, as Week 3 will still have some surprises in store for us.

We saw some great play by surprising players for a second straight week.  We encountered some more injuries in Week 3 and we have some players coming back from suspension and injuries.

Keeping that in mind we need to take a very close look at whether or not the hot waiver wire player is going to be able to help you going forward or if there just might be someone else out there that would do better in your lineup.

Let’s dive in to Week 3’s mysteries and as always, let’s start with Quarterbacks.

QUARTERBACK

Joe Flacco is the 9th ranked quarterback in the NFL going into Week 3, and at 91% available is looking to be a great pick-up for anybody who needs help in their Quarterback position.

It is important to note that Flacco’s first week stats may be a little inflated by the fact that he played the Bills.  Also causing inflation is the fact that he was chasing the Bengals for the whole game on Thursday night.

In the Bengals game, where he actually faced a tough defense, he threw two interceptions, had one fumble and looked beat up and sloppy in general and this was just Week 2.

This is not to say that he can’t help you in your lineup if you have a serious need and he is the next best quarterback available, but at this point in the season there are better quarterbacks on the wire still available in your league, one of which, is nothing more than a backup himself.

Ryan Fitzpatrick is playing out of his mind, pure and simple.  After throwing for 400+ yards and 4 touchdowns in Week 1, Fitzmagic (as they are calling him again), did the same in Week 2. For those that might have a little trouble with math, that is over 800 yards passing and 8 touchdowns in two weeks.  Yes he is hot and yes he will cool off, but I say go get him while the getting is good.

He is still available in 70% of leagues, and you may deal with some “will they, won’t they bench him” stuff in the near future, but until he cools off you can’t afford to not have him in your lineup, mostly because you don’t want to have to go up against him in the upcoming weeks.

If you don’t like the potential starter conflict surrounding Fitzpatrick, or if he is not available, then Tyrod Taylor should be.  He is available in 55% of leagues and is the #6 ranked quarterback in the NFL so far.

Cleveland has had a very rough go of it in their first two games this year, but they have played well and will be incredibly hungry for a win in Week 3.  Over the next two weeks they play the Jets and the Raiders which should provide Taylor with even more opportunity to shine.

So far Taylor has thrown for about 450 yards and 2 touchdowns and has run for another 100 yards with a touchdown in his first two games.  I don’t need to point out how helpful those rushing yards are for quarterbacks.

Taylor is playing well on a motivated team with a fairly easy schedule on the horizon, he is as good of a quarterback pick up as you could hope for off the waiver wires.

RUNNING BACK

As far as running backs go, everybody is saying that Giovani Bernard is a must have now that Joe Mixon is out for a few weeks.  I am here to tell you to “slow your roll” on that thought.

The Bengals are playing well and Bernard definitely has skills but there is a reason the Bengals brought in Jeremy Hill and then Mixon over the last few years.  They know full-well that Bernard cannot handle the bell-cow duties as he is not that effective between the tackles.

Bernard could probably help you in PPR leagues because of how many passes he will catch, but for my money there are better players out there available to you.

Austin Ekeler is the first that comes to mind.  Here is a guy that is on a team with a stud bell-cow in Melvin Gordon that has still managed to carve out a niche for himself and compile 116 yards rushing and 108 yards receiving with a touchdown in the first 2 weeks.

You should be able to get him as he is available in 59% of leagues and with the Rams being their next opponent, they will probably find themselves needing to throw a bunch; he is poised to have a lot of opportunities next week, don’t miss out on him.

Another interesting running back is Javorius Allen.  He is available in 81% of leagues and is the main pass catching running back for Flacco and the Ravens.

As I mentioned before the Ravens are struggling right now.  They will be in many games in the near future where they will find themselves needing to pass. Allen will be there to pick up all that goodness.  Just as I don’t like Flacco because of the play of the team, I do like Allen, as the poor play will help him in the long run put points on the board for your fantasy team.

About Rick Olson

Rick joined FantasySharks,com as a staff writer in 2013, though he fell in love with fantasy football in 1988 with the first league he played in. In his articles he tries to feature players off the radar or deeper than most since, in his experience, by the time a player is a waiver wire "must have" they are not usually available in most leagues.