Fantasy Football Buy/Sell/Hold Picks: Week 3 (2021)
Whether you’re buying or selling, here’s a list of players to consider making a move on before it’s too late.
Players to Buy
A.J. Brown (WR – TEN)
Brown’s catch rate is quite frustrating through two games, but fantasy managers should feel good about the 172 air yards he saw in Week 2. That, in addition to his natural talent, are the reasons to remain “in” on AJB. The slow start isn’t ideal, but things can change in a hurry for a player who has been outrageously productive through his first two NFL seasons.
Saquon Barkley (RB – NYG)
Barkley’s snap rate increased from 48% in Week 1 to 84% in Week 2. This is even more encouraging when you consider that the Giants were playing on a short week. With extra time to prepare for Week 3 against an attackable Falcons defense, Barkley’s stock is undoubtedly trending in the right direction.
Mike Williams (WR – LAC)
Through two weeks, it appears as if the Mike Williams breakout is in full swing. The former first-round pick has hauled in 15-of-22 targets for 173 yards and two scores. He has seen a slightly higher target share than Keenan Allen thus far. We don’t need him to be better than Allen moving forward, but even being in the same vicinity is a major win for fantasy managers who drafted him at a discount this offseason.
Rondale Moore (WR – ARI)
Moore still isn’t playing as many snaps as A.J. Green or Christian Kirk, but Kliff Kingsbury is using the rookie whenever he’s on the field. Moore hauled in 7-of-7 targets for 114 yards and a touchdown in Week 2, and his playing time is trending in the right direction. He’s a priority waiver wire add in leagues where he’s still available. Arizona faces the lowly Jaguars in Week 3.
Tony Pollard (RB – DAL)
Arguably the best “backup” RB in the league, Pollard has now scored more fantasy points than Ezekiel Elliott in each of Dallas’ first two games. Pollard possesses standalone value moving forward and would be a legitimate league-winner should anything happen to Zeke.
Emmanuel Sanders (WR – BUF)
Sanders’ usage remained promising in Week 2, as the 34-year-old ran 32 routes on 36 Josh Allen dropbacks. Unfortunately, this equated to just two receptions for 48 yards. However, Allen missed Sanders for a wide-open touchdown, which would’ve changed the perception of the veteran receiver entering Week 3. We know Buffalo wants to throw the ball a lot. The schedule for the Bills is about to become quite soft. Add Sanders wherever he’s available.
Sam Darnold (QB – CAR)
The former No. 3 overall draft pick has now thrown for 250+ yards in each of his first two games with the Panthers. Darnold accomplished this feat just once in 2020. He still isn’t a streaming option in 1QB formats, but he makes for a perfectly serviceable QB2 in Superflex leagues. A tasty Week 3 matchup with the Texans is on deck.
Players to Sell
Clyde Edwards-Helaire (RB – KC)
Through two weeks, CEH ranks last in PFF’s rushing grade and has seen a total of three targets. He wasn’t targeted in Sunday’s Week 2 game against the Ravens and also lost a game-losing fumble late in the fourth quarter. He’s still tied to Patrick Mahomes and the Chiefs’ offense, but Edwards-Helaire just isn’t delivering the box score results that fantasy managers need. This offense runs through Mahomes, which makes CEH a low-end RB2 moving forward. A Week 3 matchup with the Chargers is on deck.
Marquez Callaway (WR – NO)
Through two games, Callaway has amassed just 22 receiving yards on three catches. The preseason shine is fading fast, but maybe that shouldn’t come as a surprise since Callaway is a former undrafted free agent surrounded by questionable offensive skill players. Hold him if you have the roster spot, but otherwise, we can move on.
Player to Hold
Jonathan Taylor (RB – IND)
Indy’s offense looks shaky through two games, but we should expect positive regression coming for Taylor as the Colts have yet to score a rushing TD. In fact, Taylor has a whopping seven carries inside the five thus far, but he hasn’t been able to find the end zone. We know he’s talented. Stay patient.
Najee Harris (RB – PIT)
Through two weeks, Harris has played 111 offensive snaps. The next closest Steelers RB is Benny Snell, who has been on the field for just three snaps. Harris’ box score results haven’t been exactly what we’ve expected, but the workload has been highly encouraging. Harris has a get-right spot in Week 3 against the Bengals.
Chase Claypool (WR – PIT)
The second-year receiver is a wildly talented player who isn’t in the best offense for box score results, at least through two games. Claypool saw a promising 194 air yards in Week 2 against the Raiders, but he finished with just three catches for 70 yards. His talent, and that usage, make him a firm hold moving forward. Lingering concerns over the Pittsburgh offense stop him from being a full “buy.”
Tyler Higbee (TE – LAR)
The results weren’t there for Higbee in Week 2, as he received just one target, but the underlying numbers remain strong. Higbee played 100% of the Rams’ offensive snaps for the second straight game and ran a route on 26-of-32 Matthew Stafford dropbacks. Additionally, he was out wide or in the slot 15 times. Don’t drop him if you have him.
Courtland Sutton (WR – DEN)
It’s tempting to label Sutton as a “sell” since his value might never be higher, but it would only make sense to make a move if you have the receiver depth to pull it off. Sutton saw 258 air yards in Week 2, which was more than any player had in a game last season. Also, sans Jerry Jeudy, Sutton’s target share increased from 8.6% to 35.3% in Week 2. He’s the alpha in Denver moving forward. The Broncos face the Jets in Week 3.
Jalen Hurts (QB – PHI)
The second-year QB threw for just 190 yards and zero touchdowns in Week 2 against San Francisco. However, he ran for 10-82-1 on the ground, which put him over 20 fantasy points for the day. Hurts’ rushing production gives him the floor/ceiling combo we seek in our signal-callers. Start him with confidence against the Cowboys in Week 3.
Mecole Hardman (WR – KC)
Hardman tied for the team lead in targets (8) in Week 2 against Baltimore. He hauled in five receptions for 55 yards while Demarcus Robinson and Byron Pringle were able to find the end zone. Still, it’s a step in the right direction for the third-year wideout. Hardman remains the clear-cut No. 2 receiver in Kansas City’s high-powered passing attack.
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