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Fantasy Football Booms and Busts - Week 3


Fantasy football players have learned a lot through two weeks of the 2020 NFL season. The most important lesson is that you better be prepared if your fantasy squad suffers a string of torn ACLs, hamstring pulls and concussions.

New York’s Saquon Barkley is out for the season with a torn ACL, while Carolina’s Christian McCaffrey will miss multiple games due to a high-ankle sprain. These franchise running backs went one-two (more like two-one) in many fantasy drafts before the season started. Now the teams who rostered them need to find replacements faster than Kim Kardashian finds Instagram followers. Those were only two of the superstars who suffered injuries in Week 2. The laundry list is too long to mention. This should make for an interesting week to fill out your fantasy lineup whether you play in a standard league or in a DFS contest.

Without further ado, here are my under-the-radar booms and busts for Week 3!

Editor's Note: Love the strategy of season-long fantasy sports? Live for the short term gratification of DFS? Try Weekly Fantasy Sports on OwnersBox - a new weekly DFS platform. Sign up today for a FREE $50 Deposit Match. Sign Up Now!

 

Week 3 Lineup Booms

DeSean Jackson (PHI, WR) vs. CIN

The fleet-footed Jackson can still fly by defensive backs at his advanced football age but has not gotten many opportunities to do so thanks to a disjointed Eagles offense and an inconsistent Carson Wentz. Jackson is unquestionably the No. 1 WR on the team, however, until rookie Jalen Reagor is ready to take the title. Jackson has double the targets any other receiver on the roster has right now.

Cincinnati’s pass defense has looked a million times better than its run defense, but what pass defense wouldn’t look halfway decent against Tyrod Taylor and Baker Mayfield? The Bengals’ young secondary is lacking a stopper in its cornerback crew, and a couple big plays and a huge day from Jackson are overdue. When Wentz is throwing to his two top tight ends this Sunday, he will be hitting Jackson deep downfield for considerable chunks of yards and a touchdown or two.

Ryan Fitzpatrick (MIA, QB) at JAC

Fitzpatrick has had one good game and one clunker through two weeks. Jacksonville just allowed Tennessee’s Ryan Tannehill to throw four touchdown passes against them even though his top target (A.J. Brown) was not even on the field. The week before that the Jags let Indianapolis’ Philip Rivers pass for 363 yards even though he probably barely knows any of his new receivers’ names yet. The Jaguars Defense is a shell of the unit it was a few seasons back during the Jalen Ramsey years as the front office has decimated it. Fitzpatrick should be able to carve it up, especially if DeVante Parker is closer to 100 percent as his hamstring heals.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers Defense at DEN

While Tampa Bay’s Tom Brady-led offense is getting all the publicity and highlight time, the Buccaneers defense has carved out a fantasy niche for itself. The Buccaneers defense has recorded six sacks and created four turnovers in its two games. Tampa Bay has a road game against a decimated Denver Broncos squad that will be trotting Jeff Driskel out at quarterback (for the injured Drew Lock) while also being without No. 1 WR Courtland Sutton and No. 2 RB Philip Lindsay. The Bucs and Brady could build a big lead and then allow their pass rush to feast on the scramble-happy Driskel. It is hard to fathom a scenario where the Broncos score more than 17 points unless Melvin Gordon runs for 200 yards or Noah Fant can consistently outwork the double teams that will be surrounded him all game long.

Austin Hooper (CLE, TE) vs. WAS

Yes, I’m saying it. This is the week Hooper shows why he was paid multimillions in the offseason. He has had 10 more days now to get comfortable with Cleveland’s playbook and quarterback Baker Mayfield. David Njoku is hurt and cannot take his targets. The Browns are facing a Washington team that allowed Philadelphia’s tight end tandem of Zach Ertz and Dallas Goedert to make mincemeat of them in Week 1 (11-119-2). I think this is the game where the Browns get Hooper involved and allow wideouts Odell Backham Jr. and Jarvis Landry to open up the middle for him. Hooper has a low price tag in DFS contests and can probably be traded for at a bargain-basement price in standard leagues. This is the time to grab him and use him.

 

Week 3 Lineup Busts

Kerryon Johnson (DET, RB) at ARI

Three-headed running-back-by-committee backfields are about as fun for fantasy football players as going sailing is for someone who gets seasick. Johnson had more carries than rookie phenom D’Andre Swift and future Hall of Famer Adrian Peterson in Week 2 and was able to find the end zone on one of his carries. That said, he has more of a chance of getting two carries than he has of getting 20 this week and could find himself benched for most of the game unless he runs like Jim Brown in the first series or two he is on the field. There is no rhyme or reason to Detroit’s rushing strategy. Arizona has not allowed a back to break the 60-yard barrier against its defense yet. Do not expect Johnson to be the first.

Dion Lewis (NYG, RB) vs. SF

The aforementioned Barkley and his damaged knee opened the fantasy door for the veteran Lewis, who has seemingly been around longer than Fred Flinstone but has stumbled into a starting spot in the Giants rushing attack. San Francisco’s defense might be vulnerable now that the front seven has been ravaged and reduced by the season-ending knee injuries suffered by Nick Bosa and Solomon Thomas, but as banged up as the Niners were last week they still held Jets runner Frank Gore to three yards per carry. Lewis might be the top tailback, but he will have to fend of Wayne Gallman and the newly-signed Devonta Freeman for touches, so do not bank on him breaking the bank fantasy-wise for your squad this week even though he will be a waiver wire darling in most leagues.

Corey Davis (TEN, WR) at MIN

Davis has burned more fantasy players than cornerbacks during his short career. While he has gotten off to a solid start with 10 receptions for 137 yards and a touchdown, there are snake oil salesmen I would trust more than Davis. I know Minnesota’s pass defense has struggled early on, but in a must-win game at home I can see the Vikings keeping the ball away from the Titans and being able to bottle Davis up when Ryan Tannehill aims his way. Wait on jumping on the Davis bandwagon until he gets a couple more good games under his belt, although by the time he does that top target A.J. Brown will be back from his bone bruise to ruin Davis’ fantasy value.

Dalton Schutlz (DAL, TE) at SEA

Schultz was the second coming of Jason Witten in Week 2, shocking the fantasy football world with nine receptions for 88 yards and a TD in his first start after stepping in for the injured Blake Jarwin. There is no “Legion of Boom” in Seattle these days as the Seahawks secondary has been shredded in both of its wins, yet the one positive thing they have done is cover their opponents’ starting tight ends (five receptions for 57 yards). Schultz has nowhere to go down from his breakout game, so do not be surprised to see him only catch three-to-five passes for 40 yards or less in his second start of the season. The sample size for Schultz is small. I think his stats line this Sunday will be small as well.



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The 2020 MLB season will always be one for the record books, even if everything that took place will have multiple asterisks attached to it. Evaluating Statcast numbers is a nice way to find hot and cold hitters, as well as underachievers and overachievers. Now that the regular season is over, let's reflect on the... Read More


Daily MLB Injury Roundup for October 16th, 2020

RotoBaller has assembled a list of daily MLB injury updates to help you prepare both your seasonal and daily fantasy baseball (DFS) lineups, every day of the MLB season. Below is our updated list of injured MLB players for October 16th, 2020. Only players on teams that are scheduled to play today will appear below... Read More


Daily MLB Injury Roundup for October 15th, 2020

RotoBaller has assembled a list of daily MLB injury updates to help you prepare both your seasonal and daily fantasy baseball (DFS) lineups, every day of the MLB season. Below is our updated list of injured MLB players for October 15th, 2020. Only players on teams that are scheduled to play today will appear below... Read More


Daily MLB Injury Roundup for October 14th, 2020

RotoBaller has assembled a list of daily MLB injury updates to help you prepare both your seasonal and daily fantasy baseball (DFS) lineups, every day of the MLB season. Below is our updated list of injured MLB players for October 14th, 2020. Only players on teams that are scheduled to play today will appear below... Read More


Bubba and Bat Flip 53: 2 Early Mocks APD Trends & More - Benched with Bubba (Episode 315)

Bubba (@bdentrek) is joined by Bat Flip Crazy (@BatFlipCrazy) to take a deeper look at the 2 Early Mocks ADP. They dig into trends, some interesting risers/fallers, and much more. They also go over some listener questions at the end to keep the Fantasy Baseball information coming even in the offseason. Be sure to subscribe... Read More