The NFL season keeps rolling on, and Week Three is now upon us. It will begin with Andy Reid returning to Philadelphia with his new team on Thursday night, as the Kansas City Chiefs take on the high-scoring Eagles.
As always, RotoBaller.com is here to guide you through the match-ups and sit/start dilemma for Week Three, but first a quick recap of our Week Two picks.
Matchups We Loved:
- We picked five QBs to have good weeks last week, and everyone but the Raiders' Terrelle Pryor (126 passing yards, 50 rushing yards) came through with good fantasy numbers. Jay Cutler squeaked out a win, and a decent fantasy day, with a last-minute TD, finishing with 290 yards, three TDs and two INTs. The Redskins got spanked by the Packers, but RG3 was still able to throw for 320 yards, three TDs and one INT. Matt Ryan had a very solid 374 yards and two scores, and Michael Vick had another monster week to the tune of 428 yards passing, 23 yards rushing, and a combined three scores (two pass, one rush).
- Seattle's Marshawn Lynch was the only RB we picked for Week Two, and he proved us right, as he was the highest-scoring RB in the week (96 rushing yards, three total TDs).
- Steve Smith was the only WR we selected as a matchup we loved last week, but he ended up turning in a very boring five-catch, 52-yard stat line. The rest of the guys we loved were tight ends and defenses.
- The Giants stunk up the Meadowlands, yet TE Brandon Myers was still able to grab six balls for 74 yards. Jimmy Graham helped the Saints squeak out a win with a monster 10 catches for 179 yards and a touchdown. We loved five defenses last week, and three of them (Baltimore, Cincinnati and Detroit) scored at least nine fantasy points. The other two (Houston and Dallas) didn't fare quite as well, as both scored just seven points in standard scoring formats.
Matchups We Hated:
- We recommended you avoid two QBs last week in Buffalo's EJ Manuel ( 296 yards, one TD, one INT) and Pittsburgh's Ben Roethlisberger (251 yards, one TD, one INT). Both guys finished out of the top 15 in fantasy points for the week at their position.
- The running backs we picked were a mixed bag of results. David Wilson was a disaster again. Chris Johnson did rush for 96 yards, but did nothing else, and Ryan Mathews showed signs of life, but he still managed barely more than five fantasy points. Rashard Mendenhall (66 rush yards, one TD, two REC for 28 yards) and Lamar Miller (69 rush yards, one TD, two REC for six yards) proved us wrong as they both put up 15+ fantasy points. We told you to avoid the Packers' running backs as well, and we looked liked prophets when Eddie Lacy left the game with a concussion, but James Starks ultimately proved us wrong when he awoke from the dead and ran for 132 yards and a score.
- Both wideouts we wanted you to avoid more than proved us right, as Tampa Bay's Mike Williams and San Fran's Anquan Boldin combined for three catches and 16 receiving yards. Yikes!
- Baltimore was able to keep the Browns out of the end zone on Sunday, but Jordan Cameron still managed a very good five catches for 95 yards. We weren't to thrilled about Kyle Rudolph against the Bears' defense, and while his numbers were better than they were in Week One, Rudolph still only caught three passes for 42 yards, though one was a touchdown. The Chiefs' defense played much better than we had expected, matching the Dallas defense point-for-point. The Rams' defense, whom many experts thought might be in for a big day against the banged-up Falcons, did just what we at RotoBaller expected, as they got lit up by Atlanta, scoring the fourth-fewest fantasy points of any defense last week.
- Additionally, we suggested that you avoid all Jaguars players, but unfortunately if you own Cecil Shorts and took our advice, you missed out on an eight-catch, 93-yard performance. The rest of the Jags were as bad as expected.
Now on to Week Three.
Suicide Pick of the Week
Record: 2-0 (Chiefs, Raiders)
For the second week in a row, we picked on the hapless Jaguars, taking the Raiders to win. In what turned out to be the "Nobody Can Find the End Zone Bowl," the Raiders proved us right by winning 19-9. This week, we won't go against the Jags again, but rather to what is probably going to be a team worse than Jacksonville going forward. That team is the Cleveland Browns, who decided to give up on the 2013 season after two weeks by trading Trent Richardson to the Colts for a first-round draft pick. Their matchup this week is against the 0-2 Minnesota Vikings. I'm not sold on the Vikings as a playoff team, but there not an 0-3 team either, especially when the third team they play is the Browns.
Week Three NFL Matchups: Fantasy Football Analysis and Sit/Start Advice for Thursday Night
Kansas City Chiefs @ Philadelphia Eagles, Thurday 9/19, 8:30PM
Matchup We Love: Dwayne Bowe, WR
Chip Kelly's new offense in Philly has been putting up points at a frenetic pace so far this season, making all the Eagles' skill position players potential fantasy goldmines. As it turns out, the only defense that has been able to stop Philadelphia from rolling through the first two weeks of the season has been it's own. The Eagles' defense left much to be desired heading into this season, and after the first two weeks, they've allowed 60 total points and over 480 yards per game. The combination of a poor defense and a high-scoring offense in Philly means that opposing teams are going to have plenty of chances to put up huge offense numbers. Analysis: The Chiefs are going to have to put up points to win, and if they get down, they'll have to throw it a ton. In other words, consider Dwayne Bowe a must start this week as a WR2 or flex play.
Match-up We Hate: Kansas City DEF
For the third week in a row, the Chiefs' defense makes our matchup article. We loved them against the Jaguars (and we were right); we hated them against the Cowboys (and we were wrong); and now we hate them again against the Eagles. After last week, I'm completely sold on the Chiefs' D, and have no problem using them from here on out in most weeks. As you probably guessed, our pick here has nothing at all to do with the quality of Kansas City's defensive unit, but rather the potency of Philadelphia's offense. With that said, keep in mind that Philadelphia did play two of the lesser defenses in the NFL in the Redskins and Chargers the first two weeks, so this will really be Chip Kelly's first true test in the NFL, and Chiefs' coach Andy Reid probably knows the Philly personnel even better than their current coach does, so it is not out of the realm of possibility that the Chiefs' defense plays well Thursday night. Nevertheless, that's a gamble that probably isn't worth taking, unless you're in a very deep league. Analysis: Sit the Chiefs' DEF this week, as there are probably better matchup plays to be found on your waiver wire.
The RotoBaller.com weekly match-ups will be posted a bit differently going forward, as we will now serve up our matchups and sit/start advice column each day from Thursday through Sunday. You can get our Thursday game advice on Thursday morning, while Sunday game advice will come in two parts on Fridays and Saturdays. Monday matchup analysis will be posted on Sunday before the first kick off. Don't forget: for up-to-the-minute fantasy advice, check out the RotoBaller.com chat room. Good luck.