Saturday, September 22, 2018

Week 3 Fantasy Football: Wide Receivers Start'em, Sit'em

Ultimately, the decision of which player to start is largely determined by the composition of your roster (as well as your league's settings).

As an example, Keelan Cole is listed below as a "start" for Week 3. And I'd feel comfortable going into Week 37 with him as one of my starting wide receivers.

That said, he may be a sit for your team.

In other words, if you owned both Odell Beckham, Tyreek Hill and Cole and start only two receivers, you should start OBJ and Hill -- and in turn, bench Cole.

So while you won't find absolute start-sit recommendations below (use my Week 3 Fantasy Football Rankings for that instead), the goal here is to highlight some players that I like (and would feel comfortable starting) as well as some players that I dislike for this week (and would prefer to keep on my bench).

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Week 3 Fantasy Football WR Start'em


WR - Nelson Agholor, Philadelphia Eagles (vs. IND)

Philadelphia's offense gets an overall boost with the return of Carson Wentz, who threw 33 touchdowns through Week 13 last season and was square in the MVP discussion at that point. As seven-point favorites against the Colts, the Eagles are projected to be a top-seven scoring offense this week based on implied totals from Vegas odds.

Last week against the Bucs, Agholor had eight receptions for 95 yards and a touchdown on 12 targets. Agholor also had double-digit targets in Week 1, but he parlayed those targets into only 33 yards. With Alshon Jeffery (shoulder) not expected to play in Week 3, Agholor could once again be peppered with double-digit targets.

WR - JuJu Smith-Schuster, Pittsburgh Steelers (at TB)

Targeted 19 times in the shootout against the Chiefs, Smith-Schuster posted a 13/121/1 stat line in Week 2's loss. Going back to last season, the second-year wide receiver has now exceeded the 100-yard mark in three consecutive regular-season games and has gone over the century mark in four of his past five.

The good times should continue for JJS as the Bucs have allowed the 10th-most fantasy points (seventh-most in PPR) to opposing wide receivers this season. In addition, this game could be one of the highest-scoring games of the week with an over-under of 54.5, second to only the Chiefs-49ers game.

WR - Kenny Golladay, Detroit Lions (vs. NE)

With the physical profile of a No. 1 receiver, Golladay generated some buzz this offseason as a potential breakout candidate going into his second NFL season. The second-year wide receiver has exceeded expectations through the first two weeks of the season. With 21 total targets this season, Golladay has 7/114 (WR23) and 6/89/1 (WR17) performances so far this season. In a game where the Lions may be forced to play catch up, Golladay could post another top-24 performance.

WR - Keelan Cole, Jacksonville Jaguars (vs. TEN)

With Allen Robinson injured last year and signing with Chicago in the offseason and Marqise Lee out for this season, Cole has continued to step up to fill the team's void in the receiving corps to emerge as its best option. Including the most spectacular catch of the season so far, the second-year wideout finished Sunday's game with seven catches for 116 yards and a touchdown. Going back to last season, Cole has at least 99 yards in four of his past six regular-season games and eight-plus targets in four of the past five.

Listed in our waiver-wire post this week, Cole was available in more than half of Yahoo! leagues as of Monday evening. If he's still available in your league, make sure to correct that -- and potentially start him this week.


Week 3 Fantasy Football WR Sit'em


WR - Josh Gordon, New England Patriots (at DET)

Playing in the Tom Brady-led, high-powered Patriots offense will obviously be beneficial to Gordon's fantasy outlook in the long term. Given the fact that he just joined the team and the difficulty that other receivers have historically had in terms of getting up to speed with the offense, it would be unrealistic to expect big things from the talented wideout this soon. For now, I'd prefer to take a wait-and-see approach with Gordon, especially for Week 3.

WR - Larry Fitzgerald, Arizona Cardinals (vs. GB)

Once as safe as it gets as a WR2, Fitzgerald has 10 catches for 104 yards and no touchdowns on 15 targets through two games. In those games, he's finished as the weekly WR40 and WR85, respectively, in standard-scoring formats and was not significantly better in PPR formats (WR30/WR81). Normally a slam-dunk WR2 with some volume-based WR1 upside, Fitzgerald is ranked as my WR27 -- not a must-start if your league settings mandate only two starting receivers. Given the state of the Arizona offense, it's hard to have any confidence in what you'll get from Fitz (or the rest of the offense).

WR - Corey Davis, Tennessee Titans (at JAX)

With Delanie Walker out for the season, Davis is clearly the go-to guy in Tennessee's passing attack and he has a team-high 20 targets through the first two weeks of the season. A top-five pick in the 2017 NFL Draft, Davis has the potential to finish the year as a top-20 fantasy wide receiver, but this week's matchup is unfavorable with Jalen Ramsey likely to shadow the second-year receiver most of the game. Only the Bills (12.00) are projected to score fewer points than the Titans (15.25) based on implied totals from Week 3 Vegas odds.

WR - Michael Crabtree, Baltimore Ravens (vs. DEN)

Crabtree has a team-high 16 targets, but he's converted those targets into just eight catches for 94 yards and a score. Meanwhile, fellow newcomers John Brown and Willie Snead both have 14 targets each, but they have been more efficient with their targets. Both Brown (136) and Snead (103) have more yards than Crabtree and Brown (two) has more touchdowns. The matchup against the Broncos isn't great and I have Crabtree ranked as a low-end, TD-dependent WR3 this week.

- More Fantasy Football Start'em, Sit'em for Week 3

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