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Week 3 Fantasy Football: Under The Radar Options

Adam Pfeifer highlights some under the radar fantasy football options to help you cope with the fantasy Armageddon we’ve seen during the young season.

Kirk Cousins

We can’t all be so lucky.

Some of us play in eight or 10 team leagues where every single team is chalk-full of talent. Others play in 16-team leagues with deep rosters, providing holes in all rosters. And, considering the insane amount of injuries that the NFL saw in Week 2, there are plenty of holes in fantasy lineups everywhere.

Swiss cheese fantasy, folks. Never a good thing.

So, to help those who are hurting (literally or metaphorically) or those in deeper leagues, I figured it’d be wise to highlight some more under the radar options to help you cope with the fantasy Armageddon we’ve seen during the young season.

Quarterback

Kirk Cousins @ Philadelphia Eagles- Is Cousins better than Robert Griffin III? Maybe, maybe not. But it doesn’t matter now because Cousins will be under center for the Redskins for the foreseeable future with Griffin nursing a dislocated ankle. The backup stepped in on Sunday and threw for 250 yards, while tossing two scores. The Washington offense simply looked more in-tune with Cousins under center, and he makes for an intriguing play in Week 3. The Eagles secondary is weak, allowing five passing scores through the first two contest, the third-most in football. Last year, they surrendered the seventh-most fantasy points to passers and in four career games against bottom-10 pass defenses, Cousins is averaging almost 22 fantasy points per game. He has very good weapons in the passing game and in Jay Gruden’s offense that produced a top-five fantasy passer last year in Cincinnati, Cousins has upside.

Running Back

Jeremy Hill vs Tennessee Titans- Well, Hue Jackson wasn’t lying. After Week 1, the Bengals offensive coordinator stated that Hill was going to see more work, and that held true on Sunday, as Hill went from playing 7 percent of the Bengals snaps in Week 1 to almost 45 percent in Week 2. He was involved, too, carrying the football 15 times for 74 yards and a touchdown, while also posting two catches. With A.J. Green likely sidelined for this game, expect the Bengals, who currently rank third in the NFL in rushing attempts per game (35.5), to pound the rock against a Titans unit that was smashed by DeMarco Murray for 167 yards and a score. I’m thinking Hill sees at least 40 percent of the snaps, gets 12-15 carries and finds the end zone again.

Chris Ivory vs Chicago Bears- 6.3 yards per carry and two touchdowns through two games sounds pretty darn good, no? Ivory has clearly been the best back in New York and he could very well be the number one sooner or later. So far this year, Chris Johnson has played 61 snaps, but Ivory is right behind him with 57. He’s playing a lot on an offense that wants to run the football (35.5) and has a dream matchup with the Bears horrid run defense. Through two games, Chicago has allowed 161 rushing yards per game (6th) and is surrendering 20 fantasy points per game to backs. Backs are averaging 5.4 yards per rush against the Bears thus far and, especially with Eric Decker a game-time call, you know the Jets will be running a lot.

Bobby Rainey vs Atlanta Falcons- I’m not an idiot. Obviously, Rainey is basically a must-play if Doug Martin (knee) is forced to miss Thursday night’s game. But what if he doesn’t? Many people will be off of Rainey, but he could be a super sneaky play. Rainey has been better than Martin, coming off a 144-yard outing. And head coach Lovie Smith said he wants to use multiple backs. Heck, he’s wanted to since he arrived in Tampa Bay. With a banged up Martin and a hot Rainey, now seems like as good a time as ever. The Bucs host the Falcons horrible defense that is allowing the most fantasy points to rushers (37.40) and a whopping 7.5 grabs per game thus far. We saw both Bengals rushers finish as top-10 fantasy backs against them in Week 2, and Rainey is still top-20 among running backs in snaps this year.

Wide Receiver

Brian Quick vs Dallas Cowboys- Quick is clearly the number one receiver on the Rams, posting identical nine-target, seven-catch games to open the season. He’s a former early second round pick, so he’s no slouch, and simply put, he’s just looked really good. Meanwhile, the Cowboys defense hasn’t been as bad as we thought just yet, but they still aren’t very good at all. According to PFF, Quick is averaging a healthy 0.33 fantasy points per opportunity and I think Austin Davis/Shaun Hill will have plenty of time in the pocket to find Quick in this contest.

Davante Adams @ Detroit Lions- The Packers rookie surpassed Jarrett Boykin in both snaps (37) and targets (six) in Week 2 against the Jets. It looks like the tide is turning and Adams is becoming the number three wideout in Green Bay. This Packers and Lions game will be one of the most high-scoring contests of the week, and if his snaps continue to rise, Adams could be a really deep sleeper against a Lions secondary that is very exploitable.

All Sneaky Lineup:

QB- Cousins

RB- Ivory

RB- Hill

WR- Quick

WR- Adams

TE- Paul

Flex- Khiry Robinson

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