With every week that comes and goes throughout the NFL fantasy season, there are several weekly performances worth mentioning. Some performances are mentionable given the outstanding stats a particular player produced and others well, not so much.
The following is a list of those few mentionable players:
Outstanding week 3 performers
QB- Austin Davis, St. Louis Rams – Davis went 30-42 with 327 yards through the air and threw 3 touchdowns in the St. Louis Rams loss to the Dallas Cowboys.
QB- Kirk Cousins, Washington Redskins – RG who? The third year quarterback who took over for an injured Robert Griffin III last week went 30 of 48 for 427 yards and 3 scores against rivals Washington Redskins.
QB- Andrew Luck, Indianapolis Colts – Luck was on fire Sunday when he took on the Jacksonville Jaguars. Luck made it look easy slinging the pigskin around for 370 yards and 4 touchdowns.
RB- Marshawn Lynch, Seattle Seahawks – Lynch went into full on “Beast mode” Sunday afternoon in the Super Bowl XLVIII rematch when the Seahawks took on the Broncos at CentryLink Field in Seattle. Lynch carried the ball 26 times for 88 yards and a touchdown. He also caught three balls out of the backfield for 40 yards and a score. Lynch came up big for Seattle when he scored his rushing touchdown from 6-yards out in overtime, giving the Seahawks the victory.
RB- Rashad Jennings, New York Giants – Jennings put a hurting on the highly touted Houston Texans front seven as he ran the ball 34 times for 176 yards and a score.
RB- Knile Davis, Kansas City Chiefs – Davis took the place of the injured, Jamaal Charles and rushed for 132 yards and 1 touchdown on 32 attempts. The Chiefs beat the Dolphins 34-15 in his efforts.
RB- Lorenzo Taliaferro, Baltimore Ravens – Who you say? Exactly! The rookie running back from Coastal Carolina toted the rock 18 times for 91 yards and a score to help the Ravens bring home a victory from Cleveland.
WR- Julio Jones, Atlanta Falcons– It was his quarterback Matt Ryan and Julio down by the school yard last Thursday night in Atlanta. Jones posted spectacular numbers when he dropped 9 receptions for 161 yards and 2 touchdowns in the Falcons 56-14 win over Tampa Bay.
WR- Jeremy Maclin and Jordan Matthews, Philadelphia Eagles– these two wide receivers posted a combined 16 receptions for over 200 yards and three touchdowns. Maclin went for 8 at 154 yards and 1 touchdown while Matthews had 59 yards and two touchdowns on as many receptions as Maclin, (8).
WR- Victor Cruz, New York Giants– We haven’t said his name all season (other than when dropping a four letter word before it). The Giants offense finally showed up for fantasy owners in Sundays contest against the Texans. Cruz had 7 receptions for 107 yards and a touchdown in the Giants win.
WR- Antonio Brown, Pittsburgh Steelers– What can Brown do for you? Plenty, as he did in Sunday night’s contest against the Carolina Panthers. Antonio Brown caught 10 balls for 90 yards and two scores.
WR- Emmanuel Sanders, Denver Broncos– Sanders wasn’t suppose to play a huge roll in Denver’s offense this game given the presence of fellow wide receiver, Wes Welker back on the field. Playing the Seahawks incredible defense, in Seattle was going to help matters even less. Boy, were we wrong! In Denver’s overtime loss to Seattle on Sunday, Sanders was able to still come up big for his fantasy owners. He pulled in 11 balls for 149 yards. Although a score would have capped off his afternoon nicely, Sanders still put a smile on the face of the owners who started him.
In our final category of tight end in this week’s outstanding performers, I honestly couldn’t find a single tight end that had a performance which was actually worth mentioning. There were several mediocre performances and many complete duds this week. I guess if I had to choose a couple they would be:
TE- Andrew Quarless, Green Bay Packers– As this anticlimactic, non high scoring game that was supposed to be everything but, played out in this week’s contest against the Detroit Lions, Quarless managed to be on the receiving end of Mr. Rodgers lone touchdown. Quarless caught 4 passes for 43 yards and a touchdown in the loss to the Lions.
TE- Coby Fleener / Dwayne Allen, Indianapolis Colts– If we could have packaged these two tight ends and rolled them up into one, this would have been the production one would expect from a top tier tight end on any given week. Both players combined for 8 receptions, 102 yards and two touchdowns. Fleener with 4 catches, 49 yards and a score to go along with Allen’s 4 catches 43 yards and a score.
Note: This article was written prior to the Monday night game when the Chicago Bears took on the New York Jets. Tight end, Martellus Bennett ended up having a very nice game for his fantasy owners. He reeled in 5 receptions for 54 yards and 2 touchdowns.
Now, onto our not so outstanding performers for week 3:
QB- Matthew Stafford, Detroit Lions– after hearing the hype all week about how this matchup should be an outstanding, explosion of offense, this game against the Green Bay Packers was anything but explosive. Stafford was 22 of 34 and threw for 246 yards. He didn’t have a touchdown on the day. We anticipated a much better performance from Stafford and crew.
QB- Matt Cassel / Teddy Bridgewater, Minnesota Vikings– Before leaving the game early in the second quarter with an apparent toe injury, Cassel wasn’t able to get much going on offense as he went 5 for 10 for 53 yards. Rookie Quarterback, Bridgewater didn’t do that bad all things considered. He completed 12 of his 20 passes for 150 yards taking over for the injured Cassel.
RB- Donald Brown, San Diego Chargers– Unlike what Antonio, who’s mentioned above, could do for you, Donald, who was signed in the off season by the Chargers, didn’t do enough. He took on the bulk of the running back duties on Sunday afternoon. His services were needed when fellow teammate, Danny Woodhead went down with a leg injury early in the game. However, Brown didn’t do much with the opportunity given to him as he rushed for only 62 yards on 31 carries (2 yards per carry) and couldn’t find the end zone.
RB- Eddie Lacy, Green Bay Packers– Lacy’s fantasy season hasn’t gotten off to the start that many fantasy owners had hoped for. In his first three games of the season, Lacy has carried the ball a total of 36 times for 113 yards and no touchdowns. During this Sunday’s matchup with the Detroit Lions Lacy only managed 36 yards on 11 attempts. It’s been as much frustrating for Lacy fantasy owners as it is for the former Alabama running back. Hopefully we’ll see his numbers start to improve, soon.
RB- LeSean McCoy / Darren Sproles, Philadelphia Eagles– McCoy has been putting up decent fantasy numbers over the first two games of the season even with fellow teammate Darren Sproles now in the mix. However, when Shady and fellow team mate, Sproles took on division rivals, Washington Redskins on Sunday, their room to run got a little tougher. McCoy ended up carrying the ball 19 times and was only able to manage 22 yards on the ground. Fellow running back Sproles didn’t see very much action this game as he only managed 2 carries for 20 yards. I’m anticipating both McCoy and Sproles on field production to increase in future games which bodes well for their fantasy owners and the Eagles organization alike.
RB- Montee Ball, Denver Broncos– As did the majority of the Denver’s offense struggled playing in Seattle, Ball too had a difficult time producing in Sunday’s overtime loss. Ball had 14 carries for 38 yards on the ground. He also caught two passes for 6-yards out of the backfield. It was a tough outing for Ball who couldn’t get things going during the day. Then again, who really can when playing in that stadium?
WR- Torrey Smith, Baltimore Ravens– There’s only one Smith in Baltimore who’s producing for his team and fantasy owners alike and his first name isn’t Torrey. Yes, Steve Smith Sr. is the one I’m referring to that is producing. Anyway, Torrey has had an awful start to his 2014 season. The 25 year old wide receiver has a mere 6 receptions for 85 yards in his first three games this season. He also has yet to find himself in the end zone. I’m honestly not sure I see things getting much better for T. Smith who only had 2 grabs for 25 yards in this past Sunday’s game against the Browns. Barring any injuries, Smith Sr. is the only Smith I’m starting on my fantasy roster for the foreseeable future.
WR- Demaryius Thomas, Denver Broncos– It’s no surprise Peyton Manning’s number one receiver had a tough outing this past Sunday when he and his team faced the Seattle Seahawks in Seattle. Thomas was only able to pull in 4 receptions for 31 yards on the day. He did however look across the field and see his fellow teammate, Emmanuel Sanders having himself a fantastic day catching 11 balls for 149 yards. It must have been that the defense was focusing all of their attention on Thomas right? There’s no way this indicates there’s a question as to who the number one receiver in Denver is, right? After all, it’s just one game, right? I’m not even going to consider the fact that Sanders has a total of 25 receptions for 334 yards on the season to Thomas’ 13 receptions for 141 yards. It’s way too early in the season, right? Right!
WR- Larry Fitzgerald, Arizona Cardinals– You know, it really pains me to say this given I have personally been a big fan of Larry Fitz ever since he came out of Pittsburgh eleven seasons ago. However, I think it’s time to come to the realization that the 6’3”, 218lb, 31 year old wide receiver may be passing on the torch to the younger generation of wide outs on his team and in the league in general. I can’t quite pin point where the fall off actually began but there has definitely been a loss of production in the All-Pro wide receiver’s game over the past couple of seasons. In three games this season, Mr. Fitz has only caught 10 passes for 107 yards and zero touchdowns. In the game he played this past Sunday against the 49ers, Fitzgerald was only able to pull down 3 catches for 34 yards. His younger counter parts that are Michael Floyd and John Brown combined for 9 receptions, 166 yards and 2 touchdowns. I’m sure there’s a good chance Larry Fitz will have a few productive outings over the course of the 2014 season. I’m sure he still has a bit left in the tank. The question is: Will you have him in your fantasy line-ups when those occurrences happen? As for me, I love ya Larry but you’ll be riding the pine unless I need you.
TE- Antonio Gates, San Diego Chargers– the ex-basketball player out of Kent State started the 2014 season off with a bang. Over the first two games of the season, Gates managed to pull in 13 receptions for 177 yards and three touchdowns. All three of Gates’ touchdowns came in last week’s win over the defending Super Bowl champs, Seattle Seahawks. In that game Gates had 7 receptions for 96 yards and three scores. To say the game this past Sunday was a letdown for fantasy owners would be a definite understatement. The 34 year old Gates only managed to pull in one single catch for eight yards. See! That spells understatement with a capital “U”. I’m sure Gates will pull it back together when the Chargers take on the lowly Jaguars at home next Sunday. Be sure to get him in your line-ups.
TE- Jimmy Graham, New Orleans Saints– told you it was an off week for tight ends. When Graham is on our not so outstanding performances, it’s got to be a rough week at the position. Considered one of the best tight ends in the league (okay that made me feel a little uncomfortable writing), Graham had a lack luster performance this past Sunday when the Saints took on the Vikings. Graham caught 6 passes for 54 yards on the day in New Orleans’ win. I expect bigger and better things from him going forward.
TE- Zach Ertz, Philadelphia Eagles– I could sit here and try and make funny jokes about how Zach Ertz’s performance this past weekend really Ert my fantasy team. I could write about how his measly 2 receptions for 14 yards on the day really pained me so bad it Ert. However, I’m not that immature when it comes to making fun of some ones last name. In my 40 years of being on this earth, I’ve been called everything from cannoli, ravioli, holy limoli, so I understand what it’s like to be made fun of for having a last name someone can take shots at. This is the reason I’m not going to do it. Not to get off topic but has anyone seen that new Ertz rental car commercial, where the guy does that thing with his hands? It’s so funny, it ….