Heading into week 3, after wild finishes in week 2 of the NFL, we’ve been left with a league of middling teams, clear frontrunners, and questions for teams and players alike. The Cardinals and the Dolphins had comeback wins that could have big implications, while around the league there were other surprise wins and contenders falling.
All things told, this leaves us with a week that could show implications for the whole season and maybe beyond. With a number of teams at a critical juncture and both the youngest and oldest players in the league trying to prove themselves, it’s set to be another exciting week in the NFL and for fantasy players as well.
Preview of a Crucial Week Three in NFL and Fantasy Questions
Heading into week 3, there are a number of games to watch closely, especially if you have a fantasy team or are betting on the NFL this year. These insights will help shape your fantasy season and who you may have to change your betting outlook on.
For years, this question would have been a non-starter, but in 2022 the Bills seemed poised to be a perennial power, and the Dolphins might be the fastest team in the NFL. Their week three matchup is going to be a litmus test for the Dolphins, who will have a chance to show if last week’s fourth quarter comeback was a fluke or if Jaylen Waddle and Tyreek Hill are just unstoppable against a tough Bills defense.
Bills and Dolphins Most Explosive Matchup?
For the Bills, how they play in this game may give us insight into if they’ve reached the level of consistency needed to be the clear Super Bowl favorite they’re being touted as. Fantasy managers will get to see Gabe Davis in action again as well and see if the Buffalo offense can support two weekly starters at the position alongside Stefon Diggs.
Raiders and Bengals on High Alert
You probably know that an 0-2 start is bad, but in the last 15 years, less than 10% of teams who started 0-2 made the playoffs. Unfortunately, that’s exactly the spot the Bengals and Raiders find themselves in. After reasonably high expectations for the Super Bowl runner-ups and a team with major offseason acquisitions, both teams are off to disappointing starts.
Luckily for them, they get matchups suitable for righting the ship this weekend. The Bengals see the Jets in a game in which the Bengals need improved offensive line play. The Jets have shown to be scrappy when given a chance, but the Bengals should still have the advantage everywhere else. For the Raiders, the Titans offer their first chance to make good on a schedule that looks a lot easier than it did two weeks ago.
Young Teams Showing Promise Going Into Big Games
Aside from the Dolphins, there’s at least two other young teams in the league that are making some noise and showing some promise as well. The Lions had another prolific day on offense for their second game of the season while the Jags shut out the Colts 24-0.
With the Lions vs Vikings in week three, a win won’t necessarily be a statement for the Lions, but it will be more proof and the start of real consideration that the Lions could be a contender in the NFC North. The Jags on the other hand, get the Chargers. With Trevor Lawrence facing Justin Herbert, a win here would surely set the Jags’ narrative as a team of the future on fire. Both matchups should be exciting for fantasy, with the only real implications to watch being whether or not Dalvin Cook and T.J. Hockensen can even come close to their draft capital this season.
Broncos Face Challenge in Primetime
For the Denver Broncos, both their fans and fantasy owners alike must be at least mildly disappointed. Fans of the team talked themselves into believing they had a star quarterback despite signs of decline and fantasy managers thought Jerry Juedy and Courtland Sutton may finally be consistent. Unfortunately for everyone involved, the entire offense has looked OK at best. They move the ball, but struggle to score and generally just underwhelm.
Playing the 49’ers on Sunday Night Football, the Broncos run into what is suddenly a cohesive, veteran team. With Jimmy Garrappollo back under center, the 49’ers will come as a well-oiled machine, if not a prolific one. If they don’t get a win here, the Broncos will head into week four against the Raiders, with at least one team finishing the day 1-3. A close game might do little for our perspective on this team, but a big win or loss will indicate the Broncos as a contender or a possible disaster-in-progress.
Fantasy Notes in a Flash
- Gerald Everett is still available at tight end in most leagues and looks to be getting consistent targets at least until Kenan Allen returns.
- Curtis Samuel is a must-start or trade asset if he has another big game this week
- Less than 30% of leagues on ESPN had rostered Koo at this writing. He’s kicked about 94% on field goals over the last two seasons, was the number one kicker in week one, and he’s on an offense that should move the ball but struggle to score. One of the best positions for a kicker.
- Despite Cordarrelle Patterson having a big week one, Tyler Allgeier, a rookie, could be a good stash at running back. He split carries with Patterson in week two. This makes Patterson a flex at best for the foreseeable future.
Get Your Picks in and Get Ready for Week 3 and Beyond
With so many interesting storylines this week, any football fan should be excited for what’s to come. Whether it’s fantasy or betting, it’s a good time to get in early on teams and players you favor or stay put if you can’t justify the chance. Week three is going to provide some big swings, no matter which way they go, how the dust settles will greatly impact team and player markets. Get ready for jobs on the line and new GOATS in the narrative when week 4 rolls around.