I have not been able to pinpoint exactly where ownership is going to come in on the Cardinals' offense, but my guess is that the masses will flock to Kyler Murray and DeAndre Hopkins. While Murray and Hopkins have been hogging all the glory, it's Drake who has a prime get-right spot against a cupcake Lions defense that Aaron Jones shredded in Week 2.
To opposing running backs this season, the Lions have allowed 408 yards (most), 4.3 yards after contact per attempt (most) and 12 runs of 10-plus yards (most) at a rate of 21% (most). Absolutely mouthwatering numbers.
Drake is seeing a healthy 68% snap rate while averaging 20 touches per game, but he has been a slight disappointment in the production department with 146 yards and one touchdown. The Drake eruption game is coming, and I think this could be the week. PFF's Ian Hartitz projects Cardinals versus Lions to be the second-fastest paced matchup this week.
Drake checks in at RB10 in PFF's consensus rankings, yet he is priced down at $6,000 on DraftKings as the 13th-most expensive running back.
Evans had his breakout game last week, rocking a 7-104-1 receiving line on 10 targets. He had a huge 29% target share, monopolizing the Bucs' receiving attack without Chris Godwin— no other Bucs wideout had more than three targets. Godwin is returning this week, which should suppress Evans’ ownership despite the recency bias associated with his solid Week 2 performance.
Sep 20, 2020; Tampa, Florida, USA; Tampa Bay Buccaneers wide receiver Mike Evans (13) gets past Carolina Panthers cornerback Donte Jackson (26) during the fourth quarter at Raymond James Stadium. Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports
The public respect of the Broncos as a solid defense is living off reputation rather than 2020 performance. They are giving up 5.4 yards per play (16th) and have allowed the opposing team’s running back and top outside wide receiver to go off in back-to-back weeks. Check out the stat lines of Corey Davis (76% wide snap rate) and Diontae Johnson (86%) against the Broncos:
Davis: 7-101-0 on eight targets
Johnson: 8-92-1 on 11 targets
The Broncos have allowed 40 targets (most), 31 catches (most), 368 yards (most), two touchdowns (fourth) and a 121.7 passer rating (eighth) to outside wide receivers this season.
Evans has lined up on the outside on 63% of snaps this season and is primed to build on last week’s breakout. He has a top-15 WR/CB matchup in the coverage of rookie cornerback Michael Ojemudia (54.5 PFF grade, 71st) who has allowed 14 targets (14th-most), eight catches (23rd), two touchdowns (most) and a 138.1 passer rating (20th) into his coverage.
PFF's consensus rankings have Evans as the No. 7 wide receiver — fire him up in your DFS lineups.
The “Let Russ Cook” movement has reached new heights, as Russell Wilson leads all quarterbacks in passing touchdowns (nine — three more than anyone else) this season. On deck is a Cowboys secondary that was obliterated by Matt Ryan and Calvin Ridley in Week 2 — DFS players will be jumping out of their seat to jam Wilson, Tyler Lockett and D.K. Metcalfinto their lineups.
That creates an opportunity to gain leverage against the field by targeting Chris Carson. A two-game sample size is very small, which means it's possible that Seattle gets back to its run-leaning ways at some point (481 rush attempts in 2019, third-most).
Sep 20, 2020; Seattle, Washington, USA; Seattle Seahawks running back Chris Carson (32) catches a touchdown against the New England Patriots during the fourth quarter at CenturyLink Field. Credit: Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports
Since 2019, Carson has 1,078 rushing yards after contact (fourth), which trails only Derrick Henry, Nick Chubb and Ezekiel Elliott. Carson has performed well this year (76.3 PFF grade, fifth), but the volume just has not been there at 23 carries for 93 yards, 70 of which have come after contact.
However, Carson has surprisingly had an enormous impact in the receiving game this season, hauling in nine catches (third among RBs) on nine targets (eighth) for 81 yards (third) and three touchdowns (most) with an 87.4 receiving grade (fourth).
The Cowboys' run defense has been attackable this year with 74 rushing attempts faced (third-most) and a 47% run play rate (sixth). In Week 1, the Los Angeles Rams gashed Dallas with 82 rushing yards after contact (21st) and two touchdowns. Dallas bottled up the Falcons at 3.3 rushing yards per attempt (fifth) in Week 2, but perhaps that was more on Todd Gurley than strong run defense.
Even if Russ cooks up the Cowboys, there is still a path for Carson to see touchdowns or heavy receiving volume — this game’s 55.5-point total is the highest in Week 3.
Carson is priced up on DraftKings at $6,600 and will probably go overlooked around the similarly priced Miles Sanders and Jonathan Taylor. PFF's fantasy projections rank Carson 10th, and PFF's consensus rankings are similarly bullish at RB11.
Jackson is a strong tournament play whenever he is going to come in at low ownership, which is going to be exactly the case this week against the Bengals. Carson Wentz and the Eagles' offense have been a discombobulated mess this season, with Wentz checking in as the lowest-graded quarterback (44.0 PFF grade) thus far.
It is only a matter of time before Jackson pops off this year, considering his usage — 259 air yards (sixth), five targets 20-plus yards downfield (sixth) and a 17.4-yard average depth of target (seventh). Even though he has not had much deep success yet this year, Jackson has still posted decent numbers, with 15 targets, eight catches and 110 yards. With Jalen Reagor injured, an extra deep shot or two could be funneled Jackson’s direction.
Since 2019, the Bengals have been crushed by the deep ball, allowing 39 catches (second), a 49% completion rate (first), 1,315 yards (second), 12 touchdowns (fifth) and a 103.2 passer rating (seventh). And 17% of passes against the Bengals have been 20-plus yards downfield this season (fifth). Everybody remembers the infamous William Jackson jersey tug on Odell Beckham Jr. last Thursday — Beckham toasted Jackson, and that should have been another deep touchdown.
Burrow went off in primetime last Thursday by tossing three touchdowns, but most fantasy players have probably long since forgotten about that performance. On deck is a matchup against an Eagles secondary that was just smashed by Jared Goff for a 267-3 passing line on only 27 attempts.
Philadelphia’s defense has been hit this season by big plays — 18% of catches for 15-plus yards (ninth), 5.9 yards after catch per reception (ninth) and 7.7 yards per attempt (13th). The Eagles are 0-2 and have been chasing points in their first two games while getting beaten up by the pass. Deep passes have been Philadelphia’s kryptonite since 2019, having surrendered 34 catches (ninth-most ) on 97 targets (fourth) for 1,141 yards (ninth), and 13 touchdowns (second).
Burrow has been unafraid to sling the deep ball in his young career, with 12 attempts 20-plus yards downfield (fourth), but he has only one completion. Those poor numbers can be explained by the fact that A.J. Green, who has been the target on a league-high eight of those deep attempts, has a surreal 355 air yards (second) compared to just 80 receiving yards. Regression is coming.
Do not discount Burrow’s rushing ability, either. He has scrambled eight times (third) and has seven designed runs (sixth) for a total of 65 yards and one touchdown. Rushing ability raises the floor and ceiling of every quarterback, and we should be using these dual-threat signal-callers in DFS lineups.
PFF's Ian Hartitz projects this matchup to be the seventh-fastest paced game of the week, which should create plenty of volume for Burrow, who is coming off a game with a ridiculous 61 pass attempts. The rookie has the ninth-easiest quarterback matchup of the week and a consensus ranking of QB14. The Burrow plus DeSean Jackson bring-back makes for an excellent stack in DFS lineups.