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QB/RB Grind Down: Week 3

by Stevie "stevietpfl Young
Updated On: December 3, 2018, 6:08 pm ET

Week 2 is in the books, and it looks like it's going to be the year of the quarterback, as we had 12 quarterbacks throw for 300+ yards last week.


All in all, it wasn't a good tournament week for me, so I'm ready for a bounce back this weekend. There are a lot of good games to target in Week 3, so let's get right into my top picks for FanDuel and DraftKings.




Cash Game Targets


Patrick Mahomes vs. San Francisco 49ers


DraftKings and FanDuel have priced Patrick Mahomes up this week, but I still think he's worth a look in all formats. He's thrown for 582 yards and has a 10:0 TD:INT ratio in his two games this season. As for the matchup, the 49ers have allowed 591 passing yards and five touchdowns in two games this season. Both of these teams rank in the bottom 10 in coverage so far, and this projects to be one of the highest scoring games on the weekend. Mahomes, who has only thrown two interceptable passes this season, has a high floor and high enough ceiling to pay off this price tag.


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Alex Smith vs. Green Bay Packers


I don't expect a lot of people to be on Alex Smith this weekend, but if you're looking to save some money, I think he's in a favorable spot. We saw this Green Bay defense struggle against the pass last season, and after re-watching last week's game, I don't think they've fixed the issue, as Kirk Cousins threw for 425 yards and four touchdowns against them. Smith has completed over 70% of his passes in each of the first two games, and while he didn't throw a touchdown last weekend, he still threw for 292 yards. Smith always adds a nice bump with his rushing ability, so I like his floor in this matchup.


Tournament Targets


Jimmy Garoppolo @ Kansas City Chiefs


I don't like playing opposing quarterbacks going into Kansas City, but this Chiefs Defense looks awful right now; they've allowed over 420 passing yards and three touchdowns in each of the first two games this season. It hasn't been the greatest start for Jimmy Garoppolo, but if we're expecting this game to be a shootout, then he should be in line for a big game this weekend. The Chiefs run defense has been a lot better than their pass defense this season, and with the 49ers running the ball so well thus far, this might be the first game that the 49ers have to truly rely on Garoppolo.


Eli Manning @ Houston Texans


The Giants have been one of the easiest teams to figure out for fantasy football this season. This offense runs through Odell Beckham and Saquon Barkley, though if Eli just plays decently well, this could be a sneaky game to target. I like the price tag on Manning, as I think he has multiple passing touchdown upside in this matchup. Houston is the home favorite, and if we're projecting the Texans to be up in this one, you figure the Giants are going to be throwing a lot in the second half. I always try to give out one large-field tournament play a week, and Eli is that guy for this weekend.


Running Back


Cash Game Targets


Alvin Kamara @ Atlanta Falcons


We saw what Christian McCaffrey was able to do to the Falcons last week, as he had 14 catches for 102 yards. Atlanta has allowed the most receptions to opposing running backs in each of the last three seasons. I think the game flow will benefit Alvin Kamara most this weekend; whether the team is down or up, we know he's going to get his work. He's expensive, but without Ingram, you're paying up for his massive floor. Kamara has 15 catches and 165 receiving yards through two games, and while he only has 75 rushing yards, he's still been the highest scoring running back this season.


Corey Clement vs. Indianapolis Colts


With Jay Ajayi and Darren Sproles both missing practice on Thursday, it doesn't sound like either of them will play this weekend. This will open up a lot of work for Corey Clement and Wendell Smallwood, and Clement seems like the safer option for cash games. Not only can Clement run the ball well; he's also very capable of catching the ball out of the backfield. The Colts have allowed the ninth-most fantasy points to opposing running backs in two games this season. With the likely workload increase, I'm targeting the floor of Clement and his pass catching upside with Carson Wentz back.


Tournament Targets


Saquon Barkley @ Houston Texans


I mentioned Eli Manning above, and even if you don't want to roll the dice with him, I think you have to look at Saquon Barkley this weekend. He's averaging 11 targets and 14.5 carries per game, and his 85% opportunity share is the third highest among running backs this season. Barkley is top 10 in both rushing yards and receiving yards, and he's third in receptions. He only has one touchdown on the season, yet he's the sixth-highest scoring running back. If Barkley finds the end zone this weekend, he could be the highest scoring running back on the slate, and I absolutely love his upside in this matchup.


Jordan Howard @ Arizona Cardinals


I'd expect the Bears Defense to be one of the highest owned defenses on this slate, and I particularly like the correlation there with Jordan Howard. Arizona has allowed the most fantasy points to opposing running backs through the first two games. This defense has struggled badly so far, and Howard is in a great spot to take advantage of that. He is a good between-the-tackles back, and he's been efficient catching the ball out of the backfield this season. I like Howard more on FanDuel because of the touchdowns and half-point PPR, but I will have exposure to him on both sites this weekend.

Stevie "stevietpfl Young
Stevie "stevietpfl" Young is a top-ranked DFS player and GrindersLive host who specializes in NFL, MLB and NASCAR. He provides both written content and media work for RotoGrinders.