Fri Sep 22 1:29pm ET
Field Level Media
Bye weeks are on the horizon, but with all 32 teams in action this week, another full smorgasbord of prop picks shuffles in along with NFL Week 3.
Newer bettors can be overwhelmed by the almost limitless offerings. Viewing your props as merely a derivative of how you expect the game to unfold is critical.
With that strategy in mind, here are our top five player props for Week 3.
Ryan Tannehill over 197.5 passing yards (-118 at FanDuel)
Per DVOA metrics, the Browns rank second defensively. However, a big part of their ranking involves the three points allowed the Bengals on a wet day in Cleveland.
Bengals quarterback Joe Burrow had all sorts of problems during the game, and it's not a stretch to say that he's nowhere near fully healthy this season due to a lingering calf injury.
In Week 2, Pittsburgh's Kenny Pickett threw for 222 yards.
FanDuel has a projection under 200 passing yards for Tannehill, and that number is short.
It's worth noting that according to the NFL's Next Gen Stats, Tannehill ranks seventh in intended air yards per attempt (8.6 per game), whereas Burrow and Pickett rank 23rd and 24th.
Tyler Allgeier over 40.5 rushing yards (-115 at BetMGM)
The Atlanta Falcons are flying high and off to a 2-0 start. A big part of their success has been the running game behind the duo of Allgeier and Bijan Robinson.
Robinson will get the bulk of the headlines as a first-round rookie, but Atlanta head coach Arthur Smith seems committed to getting Allgeier touches, especially near the goal line.
Interestingly, Allgeier (31) has two more carries than Robinson (29) through two games.
And although Atlanta is tied for first (51%) with Dallas in average run rate, their average margin of victory (+7.5) is 22.5 points less than the Cowboys.
Allgeier posted at least 48 rushing yards in his two games against the Panthers (ninth) and Packers (14th), two teams ranked higher in run defense EPA than the Lions.
Look for the Falcons to continue to share the workload with Allgeier rushing for over 40.5 yards.
Jordan Love over 1.5 passing touchdowns (+135 at BetMGM)
Green Bay missed a golden opportunity to stay perfect on the season after blowing a 12-point lead in the fourth quarter against the Falcons.
The 1-1 Packers host New Orleans to take on a Saints team off to a 2-0 start.
New Orleans (+2.0) has the lowest margin of victory of any of the remaining undefeated teams. And according to TeamRankings, the Saints sit third in their luck factor metrics.
We've noticed with Green Bay the offense might not always look fluid, but it has been potent inside the red zone -- tied for first with an 83.3 percent touchdown conversion rate.
Love ranks fourth (75.2) in the league in Total QBR with six touchdowns on the season and has yet to throw an interception.
Raheem Mostert under 13.5 receiving yards (-110 at BetMGM)
I don't want to rely on too many overs, which ushers in this play on Mostert receiving yards.
The Dolphins running back had a heavier workload in Week 2, with 18 rushing attempts compared to 10 in the season opener.
Mostert gets the bulk of carries, but Dolphins head coach Mike McDaniel will continue to use Mostert sparingly in their passing game.
In Week 1, the Dolphins had 466 receiving yards against a Chargers team that ranks 29th in EPA against the pass, and Mostert still finished with two catches for 13 yards.
Miami already has five players with at least 65 receiving yards, and McDaniel said he's ready to roll out rookie running back De'Von Achane in a more consistent role starting Sunday.
JuJu Smith-Schuster under 35.5 receiving yards (-115 at PointsBet)
Smith-Schuster signed a three-year deal worth $33 million and signs pointed to the former Steelers and Chiefs receiver playing a major role.
Through two games, he's averaging just 30.5 receiving yards and has yet to score a touchdown.
A closer look at his NFL Next Gen Stats reveals that Smith-Schuster (-2.1) ranks 97th among 99 players in yards after catch above expectation (YAC +/-) with at least eight targets.
Enter the New York Jets, a team with a strong secondary.
New York ranks 13th in defensive DVOA, and Smith-Schuster will likely line up against Jets cornerback Sauce Gardner.
Per Pro Football Focus, Gardner is tied for 10th in pass coverage with a 79.2 rating.
Despite being tied for second on the team in targets (13), Smith-Schuster is only fifth in total reception yards (61).
Given the matchup with Gardner and this being a divisional game, I like the Patriots wide receiver to stay under 35.5 receiving yards.
--By Michael Nwaneri, Field Level Media
Houston Texans rookie quarterback C.J. Stroud (shoulder) is close to being back to 100 percent despite being limited in practice this week. Stroud revealed that he suffered a similar right-shoulder injury in 2021 while at Ohio State. Despite being hurt and hit often in the Week 2 loss to the Indianapolis Colts, he managed to go 30-for-47 for 384 yards and two touchdowns, which was the second-most passing yards by a rookie QB in a single game in franchise history. The Texans aren't taking any chances with Stroud's health, and he'll be managed accordingly throughout the week. Through his first two NFL games, Stroud has thrown 91 passes for 626 yards, setting the record for the fourth-most passing yards by a rookie QB in NFL history during that span.
Indianapolis Colts rookie quarterback Anthony Richardson (concussion) has officially been ruled out for the Week 3 game on Sunday against the Baltimore Ravens due to a concussion that he sustained in the Week 2 win over the Houston Texans. With Richardson sidelined, veteran Gardner Minshew will make his first start in a Colts uniform on the road in Baltimore. The 21-year-old Richardson had two rushing scores and was well on his way to a big game last week before he became concussed. He remains in the league's concussion protocol and it remains to be seen if he'll be cleared in time to play in Week 4 at home against the Los Angeles Rams. Minshew will be in play as a low-end QB2 option for those in leagues that start two quarterbacks.
Buffalo Bills quarterback Josh Allen returned to form with a three-touchdown effort in Week 2's beatdown of the Las Vegas Raiders. The 27-year-old next takes on the Washington Commanders, who just allowed fantasy's overall QB3 finish out of Russell Wilson last Sunday after teeing off on journeyman backup Joshua Doubs in the season opener for Week 1's lowest score among starting QBs. Washington's fierce defensive line has already turned in 10 sacks, which is tied only with the Dallas Cowboys. The Commanders lost Wilson for 56 rushing yards in Week 2, so expect Allen to use his legs more than he had to a week ago after logging just seven rush yards in that one. With an NFL-high 10 red-zone completions, the two-time Pro Bowler ranks as a top-tier QB1 in Week 3. Allen's DFS rostership could offer leverage while in arguably the most imposing matchup of his elite QB1 peers.
Carolina Panthers rookie quarterback Bryce Young (ankle) has officially been ruled out for the Week 3 game on Sunday against the Seattle Seahawks, and there's a chance he could also be sidelined next week. Veteran backup Andy Dalton will make his first start for the Panthers in a hostile environment on the road in Seattle, so fantasy managers shouldn't expect much from the offense in this one. At best, Dalton will be on the fantasy radar as a low-end QB2 option for those in superflex leagues. Jake Luton is expected to be called up from the practice squad to serve as Dalton's backup on Sunday. The Panthers could go with a more run-heavy game script with Young not playing, which would be good news for RBs Miles Sanders and Chuba Hubbard.
Carolina Panthers running back Miles Sanders (pectoral) was not listed on the team's final injury report on Friday heading into the Week 3 contest on Sunday on the road against the Seattle Seahawks. Sanders put in a full practice on Friday after being limited on Wednesday and Thursday. He'll be a full-go and could be leaned on more on Sunday with rookie quarterback Bryce Young (ankle) ruled out. Sanders hasn't been very impressive in his first two games for Carolina, averaging just 3.6 yards a carry on 32 rushing attempts for 115 yards while catching seven of 11 targets for 30 additional yards. The 26-year-old will be looking to find the end zone for the first time in 2023 and should be treated as a solid volume-based RB2 in fantasy.
Miami Dolphins running back Raheem Mostert looks like a younger version of himself so far this year and has turned into a bellcow back at the age of 31. After running for 121 yards and two touchdowns against the Patriots, he sets his sights on a Broncos defense that allows the sixth-most missed tackles in the league so far. To go a step further, Mostert has played 73% of the team's snaps each week and it doesn't look like anyone will be challenging him for more carries. The Broncos even give up the tenth-most yards after contact. All of that makes for a quality week that could lead Mostert to a low-end RB1.
Miami Dolphins tight end Durham Smythe gave fantasy managers some hope in Week 1 with the amount of target he saw, but it hasn't turned into much at all. Smythe is better left on the waiver wire, let alone the bench. While Jaylen Waddle (concussion) has yet to clear concussion protocols, it doesn't necessarily mean that Smythe will see meaningful volume against the Broncos. Tua Tagovailoa is going to look for the receivers first and foremost while Raheem Mostert should get going on the ground as well. Until Smythe can put up some sustainable production, he'll remain off the fantasy radar.
Miami Dolphins quarterback Tua Tagovailoa had an incredible Week 1 and then came back down to Earth against a tough Patriots defense in Week 2. The good thing is that he goes up against the Denver Broncos in Week 3 which is ranked in the lower third of the league in terms of points allowed. When it comes to the passing game, they've given up 233 yards per game and only have one takeaway to their name after two weeks. Even if Jaylen Waddle (concussion) doesn't play, Tagovailoa will have enough firepower to get back to QB1 range.
Miami Dolphins wide receiver Tyreek Hill should just remain cemented as the WR1 in fantasy lineups everywhere. The speedy wideout has scored in each of his first two games and collected 255 yards on 16 receptions in the process. He will draw a tough matchup against one of the best cornerbacks in the league in Pat Surtain II though. With that being said, the Dolphins are sure to draw up some plays to get him some open space. Jaylen Waddle (concussion) has been missing practice all week as well, which means Hill could see even more work if they have to rely even more on the passing game.
The Cincinnati Bengals are signing quarterback Reid Sinnett to their practice squad on Friday, according to a source. If Joe Burrow (calf) can't play on Monday night against the Los Angeles Rams, Sinnett would be the backup to Jake Browning. The Bengals lost quarterback Will Grier on Friday when the New England Patriots signed him to their active 53-man roster off of Cincy's practice squad, so Sinnett will essentially replace Grier as extra QB depth. The 26-year-old Sinnett was with the Bengals in training camp this summer, so he has at least a little knowledge of their system.
Baltimore Ravens kicker Justin Tucker spends another week at the top of his position heading into a Week 3 matchup against the Colts. The veteran has made three out of his four field goal attempts so far and made all five of his extra points. The Ravens are likely to move the ball a lot in this matchup and if they aren't scoring touchdowns, they should at least be within Tucker's limitless range. He should see a good mix of both field goals and extra points in this contest. Tucker is someone that managers don't have to worry about until it's bye week time.
San Francisco 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan made good on his promise to get running back Elijah Mitchell involved in the game plan after Mitchell didn't play at all in the Week 2 win over the Los Angeles Rams. On Thursday night in the 30-12 win over the New York Giants, Mitchell saw a season-high 11 carries for 42 yards and caught all three of his targets for two yards. It was nice to see the 25-year-old get more involved in a game that wasn't close at all late, but Mitchell's week-to-week workload could vary drastically based on game flow, and as long as bell-cow Christian McCaffrey is healthy and doing his thing, Mitchell isn't going to have standalone fantasy value. He could, however, see another solid workload in a Week 4 matchup with the lowly Arizona Cardinals.
The New England Patriots announced on Friday that they have signed quarterback Will Grier to the 53-man active roster from the Cincinnati Bengals' practice squad and moved defensive back Marcus Jones (shoulder) to Injured Reserve in a corresponding move. Grier will join the Patriots active roster to give the team more depth at the position behind starter Mac Jones and backup Bailey Zappe as they head into a Week 3 matchup against the division-rival New York Jets this Sunday. Grier will serve as the team's emergency third signal-caller for this week's game. Marcus Jones suffered a torn labrum in his shoulder in the Week 2 loss to the Miami Dolphins and will now have to miss at least the next four games.
New York Giants wide receiver Wan'Dale Robinson made his debut in the 30-12 loss to the San Francisco Giants on Thursday night and caught four of his five targets for 21 yards. Robinson missed the first two games of the season while recovering from a torn ACL that he suffered in Week 11 of his rookie season in 2022. It wasn't a terrible showing at all in his first game of the year against one of the best defenses in football, and his four receptions were second on the team to Parris Campbell's six. The 22-year-old should see his role grow in the Giants offense as the season progresses, and he could even become one of quarterback Daniel Jones' go-to targets. Robinson is worth picking up for receiver depth in fantasy leagues if he's available on the waiver wire.
New England Patriots tight end Hunter Henry has entered must-start territory heading into Sunday's game against the New York Jets. The veteran has been a top pass-catcher in the Patriots offense thus far, catching 11 passes for 108 yards and two touchdowns. While some touchdown regression is inevitable, there's no denying that Henry has blossomed into Mac Jones' go-to option in the passing game, especially in clutch spots. Deploy Henry as a mid-range fantasy TE1 this week.
Jacksonville Jaguars head coach Doug Pederson said he expects linebacker Josh Allen (shoulder) has progressed well enough to likely play in Week 3 on Sunday against the Houston Texans. Allen suffered a shoulder injury in the Week 2 loss to the Kansas City Chiefs but was able to put in some limited practices so far this week. The Jaguars have gotten very little out of their pass rush through the first two weeks of the 2023 season, but Allen has been doing his part, producing 11 tackles (eight solo), three tackles for loss, three QB hits and three sacks in games against the Indianapolis Colts and Chiefs. The 26-year-old will be in play as a starting lineup option in IDP fantasy leagues this weekend if he's active on Sunday.
Las Vegas Raiders wide receiver Jakobi Meyers (concussion) has cleared the league's concussion protocol and was a full participant in practice on Thursday for the first time since suffering the head injury in the season opener, when he went for a game-high nine catches for 81 yards and two touchdowns before getting hurt. Meyers is on track to play on Sunday night in Week 3 against the Pittsburgh Steelers in the team's home opener after missing the Week 2 loss to the Buffalo Bills. With the 26-year-old back, he should once again be the No. 2 option for quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo behind star wideout Davante Adams. Fantasy managers shouldn't expect big games like Meyers had in Week 1 every week, but he'll be back in play as a WR4/flex option in fantasy lineups in Week 3.
The Baltimore Ravens defense/special teams heads into a Week 3 matchup against the 25th-ranked offense in the league. This unit gave up just 66 yards on the ground against the Bengals and recorded a sack and interception. Anthony Richardson (concussion) has yet to be cleared from his concussion in Week 2, but if he plays, the Ravens are equipped to limit his running ability. If he doesn't play, then the defense will likely take advantage of Gardner Minshew's limited mobility. This team is a solid streaming option heading into Week 3.
Dynasty | 49ers rookie WR Ronnie Bell made his first NFL catch, a touchdown, in their win over the Giants. Dynasty Analysis: Bell was a 7th round pick for the San Francisco 49ers and had not received a target before Thursday night's game against the Giants. With Brandon Aiyuk ailing, Bell took advantage of the opportunity and caught both targets for 24 yards and a score from Brock Purdy.Bell is still buried on the depth chart a bit and is likely only relevant in extremely deep dynasty leagues. He would need further injuries or a major shakeup to see enough playing time to be worthy of a roster spot.
Dynasty | Matt Breida rushed only four times and was targeted three times in his first opportunity to fill in for the injured Saquon Barkley. Dynasty Analysis: Breida likely saved many dynasty managers with an eight yard touchdown, but otherwise was almost invisible. However, he had the most carries on the team, tying with Gary Brightwell against a stout 49ers run defense. He should have better opportunities in the next couple of weeks if Saquon continues to miss time due to his ankle injury. Long term, Breida is not a dynasty target, but could provide some short-term production for desperate teams.