Welcome to this week’s Preseason Weekly Analysis.
In today’s article, we have the Week 3 games to recap.
This week’s edition of the Preseason Weekly Analysis is especially interesting for two reasons. The first is that we are coming off of the most important week of the Preseason. Week 3 is usually the most important because most starters usually play the most amount of time this week, and this year’s Week 3 didn’t disappoint as it was chalk-full of injuries and other Fantasy-relevant news.
The second reason is that this edition will be the first one without a preview for the next week. The reason for this is that Week 4 won’t be significant enough to be able to predict the big stories. We will still be coming out with a recap for Week 4, as things will go down, but there is no way to really predict this and if I tried, it would likely be boring and useless. On the plus side, that means the recap of Week 3 will be even more in depth. Yay!
For these reasons (and plenty more), we have a great article prepared for you readers. So, without any further introduction, let’s get into the article.
Preseason Weekly Analysis
Preseason Weekly Recap
Here, we will have two categories: For Real, and Not For Real. The three “For Real” players are ones whose preseason performances (good or bad) actually may, at least to some extent, be indicative of what is to come for them. The three “Not For Real” players are then obviously ones whose performances (good or bad) aren’t indicative of much at all. With the explanation out of the way, let’s start with the “For Real” section.
Dalvin Cook, RB, Minnesota Vikings
vs. 49ers: 5 carries for 17 yards
This exact stat-line isn’t supposed to indicate anything about Cook’s Fantasy value other than the fact that I expect him to be a very frustrating player this year. He has a terrible offensive line, but players can work through that as long as they have talent and a solid workload. Cook has immense talent, but two very talented running backs (Latavius Murray and Jerrick McKinnon) behind him that are sure to eat into his role. Cook is a high-risk, high-reward RB2.
Philip Rivers, QB, Los Angeles Chargers
vs. Rams: 6-6 for 85 yards and 1 touchdown
I feel like every year people forget about Philip Rivers, and every year he is just a solid quarterback. He is not a QB1 unless you are in a very deep league, but you could do worse than having Rivers as your QB2. He is consistent, throws the ball in a gunslinger-type style, and now that Melvin Gordon is back he once again is part of a balanced offense that is sure to keep defenses off balance. Also, the addition of Mike Williams and the return of Keenan Allen can only help. Keep an eye on Rivers.
Chris Hogan, WR, New England Patriots
vs. Lions: 4 receptions for 70 yards and 2 touchdowns
Forgive me for actually putting a Patriots player anywhere in either of these sections. We all know that that team is pointlessly unpredictable. However, now that Julian Edelman is out for the year, that leaves breakout “star” Chris Hogan a chance to fully establish himself as a key part of the Patriots offense. He very well could be the WR5 by the end of the season, or converted to free safety, but I would bet on high-end WR3 production instead.
Not For Real
John Brown, WR, Arizona Cardinals
vs. Falcons: 2 receptions for 49 yards and 2 touchdowns
No. Just no. I will never, ever, ever, ever, ever think of John Brown as a Fantasy asset ever again. He isn’t a very good NFL receiver, and Carson Palmer isn’t a great quarterback anymore. He will try and fool you occasionally, but don’t bite.
Matthew Stafford, QB, Detroit Lions
vs. Patriots: 15/22 for 190 yards, 2 touchdowns, and 1 interception
First things first, this man just got paid. Secondly, I love Stafford as an NFL quarterback, and used to love him as a Fantasy quarterback. Just not anymore.
Jim Bob Cooter magic stopped working in the second half of the season last year when the Lions slowed things down and Stafford stopped throwing for touchdowns. Stafford is a fine QB2, but don’t consider him as anything better than that.
The Jets Offense
Bryce Petty threw for 250 yards and three touchdowns. Cool, but he isn’t starting. Bilal Powell and Matt Forte combined for 17 carries 75 yards. Good, but not great. Also, I don’t even need to explain why it is best to avoid the Jets backfield (bad team, no passing game, competition for carries). Powell added 110 in the air, and rookie wide receivers Chad Hansen and ArDarius Stewart combined for 7 receptions for 127 yards (and two touchdowns from Stewart). Again, cool, but I don’t need to explain why you shouldn’t make a big deal out of this.
While I do believe, and have said before, that Stewart and Hansen carry some deep league upside, the Jets as a whole suck, and everyone knows that. They will have some decent Fantasy pieces, but don’t be fooled.
Important Position Battle Results
Since barely any starters play in Week 4 of the Preseason, all of the important position battles are basically done with. So, instead of putting “Position Battles to Watch” in the preview section of this article, we have decided to include the important results in the recap section for this week.
Kareem Hunt over Spencer Ware, RB, Kansas City Chiefs
Although it was by default due to Spencer Ware’s season ending injury, I not only believe that Hunt deserved the job anyway, but also that it was the ideal outcome for Fantasy purposes. Moving forward, Hunt will have his sleeper status removed as he now becomes an immediate RB2 with true RB1 upside
Blake Bortles over Chad Henne, QB, Jacksonville Jaguars
Count this one down as another win for Fantasy owners. While I don’t thing Bortles is that good, I feel like he does have potential to preserve the Fantasy value of teammates Allen Robinson and Leonard Fournette (at least more than Henne would have been able to).
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