Three weeks into the NFL season — and thus the fantasy soccer season — and it is time for some straight solutions.
It’s important to ask the powerful questions: Is your roster the place you need it to be? Or are you 1-2 or 0-Three and headed for catastrophe? We’re not saying we will prevent, however we will try and reply the largest burning questions, reminiscent of:
These are just some of the questions our 32 NFL Nation reporters will contact on this week, as requested by ESPN fantasy sports activities researcher Kyle Soppe.
The sport grabbing the highlight this weekend is certainly the return of Tom Brady to New England as a member of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. However to not be ignored are two division video games in arguably the most effective division in soccer. In a battle of 3-Zero groups, the Arizona Cardinals go to the Los Angeles Rams. And the opposite NFC West matchup pits the Seattle Seahawks (1-2) on the San Francisco 49ers (2-1).
The time has come for the questions and solutions for Week 4 of the 2021 NFL season. Let’s go!
Will the Payments have a constant WR2? Whom do you want most to provide on the place shifting ahead subsequent to Stefon Diggs?
The Payments are going to get quite a lot of gamers concerned within the receiving sport. By way of three weeks, Cole Beasley and Emmanuel Sanders have the identical variety of receiving yards (194), however Beasley has been focused 10 extra instances. Beasley, nonetheless, has but to catch a landing go. Probably the most constant possibility in all probability is Beasley, who completed final season simply shy of 1,000 receiving yards. Sanders will probably be somebody who has a major function on this offense, particularly downfield. — Alaina Getzenberg
In a PPR league — sure. All 13 of Gesicki’s catches this season have come from Brissett, and though they have not been terribly environment friendly targets, he has nonetheless been focused 18 instances prior to now two video games. He is too proficient to be saved below wraps for for much longer and the chance is clearly there, so you’ll be able to definitely discover worse choices than Gesicki. — Marcel Louis-Jacques
Sure, Meyers is an efficient guess to stay excessive. He’s constantly on the sector, taking part in extra snaps than another receiver, and with that comes a larger likelihood at manufacturing. Meyers leads the crew with 19 catches for 176 yards and has developed a rapport with rookie quarterback Mac Jones. — Mike Reiss
Can Michael Carter earn the featured function on this backfield and get round 15 touches a weeks?
No. The Jets don’t consider in having a characteristic again; they like the committee strategy. Carter will proceed to get about 10 touches per sport, however he’ll break up the workload with Ty Johnson, with some Tevin Coleman sprinkled in. Carter should enhance his blocking if he desires an even bigger function. — Wealthy Cimini
Can we depend on WR Sammy Watkins seeing seven-plus targets (as he has in every sport this season)?
Sure, till first-round decide Rashod Bateman will get in a sport. After Marquise Brown dropped three passes within the first half Sunday, Lamar Jackson focused Watkins six instances after halftime, together with that fourth-and-19 conversion. There may be actually no different confirmed possibility for Jackson on the surface past Watkins and Brown. Watkins constructed a rapport with Jackson in coaching camp, and that has carried over to the early a part of the season. Bateman, the No. 27 total draft decide, was activated off injured reserve Wednesday however may need one other week earlier than taking part in in a sport. — Jamison Hensley
Towards Jacksonville, eight of 9 performs on the primary drive have been passes: Was that matchup-based or an indicator of what to anticipate shifting ahead?
Do not be fooled by the early passing against the Jaguars. The Bengals are striving for a balanced passing assault one yr after Joe Burrow averaged 40.Four go makes an attempt per sport. This season, he ranks 28th amongst 33 qualifying quarterbacks with 26.Eight go makes an attempt per sport. The quantity fantasy managers have been hoping for this season simply does not appear to be there. — Ben Child
There are sufficient touches within the Browns’ offense to go round for each Hunt and Chubb. Keep in mind, six of these Hunt touches Sunday have been from receptions. Regardless of Hunt’s large day, Chubb nonetheless ranks fifth within the NFL in rushes. Chubb stays the heartbeat of the offense, and that’s not going to vary. — Jake Trotter
Will the Steelers keep dedicated to the run, or is there an opportunity the brief passing sport serves as that given their weaknesses up entrance?
The Steelers will maintain utilizing the brief passing sport, however do not anticipate Najee Harris to get 19 targets towards the Packers. Coach Mike Tomlin mentioned they utilized that a bit an excessive amount of towards the Bengals, nevertheless it was undoubtedly more practical than the run sport. Harris carried the ball solely 14 instances in comparison with 58 go makes an attempt, so whereas he is their lead again, the standard run sport is not a major a part of the offense via three weeks. Till the offensive line kinds itself out — if it may type itself out — Harris will probably be best as a pass-catching again. — Brooke Pryor
Tight finish manufacturing is hard to seek out. Are 5 to seven targets a sport an inexpensive expectation for Jordan Akins shifting ahead?
Will probably be arduous to depend on Akins for constant targets, no less than for now. By way of six quarters, rookie quarterback Davis Mills has centered on focusing on large receiver Brandin Cooks, and 13 of his 27 completions this season have gone to the veteran receiver. Akins had his best day of the season (4 catches for 32 yards on 5 targets) Thursday evening towards the Panthers, however Houston was additionally with out Danny Amendola and Nico Collins. — Sarah Barshop
Jonathan Taylor has but to attain and has simply 125 complete yards over the previous two weeks: Mini-slump, or ought to we be apprehensive?
It is fully baffling why Taylor had solely 10 carries whereas averaging 6.Four yards an try towards the Titans when quarterback Carson Wentz was taking part in with two dangerous ankles. Wentz is more healthy this week, however do not anticipate Taylor to have solely 10 carries once more towards Miami. The Dolphins are 27th within the NFL towards the run, giving up 136 yards a sport, which units up the right alternative for Taylor to have his first 100-yard speeding sport of the season. — Mike Wells
Who will get the largest uptick in targets with DJ Chark Jr. injured?
I feel it’s going to be unfold round between WRs Laviska Shenault Jr., Tavon Austin and Jamal Agnew, which is what occurred after Chark got hurt. Agnew may see essentially the most extra work out of that group as a result of he is actually good within the open discipline. However the participant folks ought to watch is TE Dan Arnold. He joined the crew Monday however picked up the offense effectively sufficient to play and catch two passes, together with a important 17-yarder. He is the most effective pass-catching TE on the roster and the Jags tried to signal him in free company, so that they clearly had an enormous function in thoughts for him after they pursued him. — Michael DiRocco
Is Derrick Henry‘s involvement within the passing sport right here to remain?
Sure. Henry joked that he offers QB Ryan Tannehill a shoulder nudge as a reminder that he is obtainable when the deeper routes are coated. Henry has labored arduous to enhance his go catching and has even been utilized in empty units. So long as the protection continues to concentrate on vertical passing, Henry will probably be an possibility as a checkdown for Tannehill. Offensive coordinator Todd Downing can even often dial up display screen passes that usually end in chunk performs for Henry. Tannehill has focused Henry 13 instances, with 12 of them leading to completions for 105 yards. — Turron Davenport
Given the accidents at WR, what are your expectations for Tim Patrick because the presumed WR2?
The one merchandise that would have an effect on Patrick’s snap depend, past an harm, can be the Broncos’ use of a three-tight-end look they’ve used lots this season — 14 snaps within the Week Three win over the Jets alone — as Patrick or Courtland Sutton is normally the lone large receiver on the sector for that look. In any other case, Patrick goes to get the work and be environment friendly given he has turned 13 targets into 12 receptions and two touchdowns. — Jeff Legwold
Discipline Yates and Matthew Berry break down the professionals for having Tim Patrick in your fantasy soccer roster.
What has modified for Tyreek Hill over the previous two weeks (eight catches and 11 targets) from Week 1 (11 catches on 15 targets)?
He has been extra the main target of defensive consideration because it seems opponents are daring the Chiefs to beat them with their different large receivers. These receivers have not but been constantly adequate to try this, which is why the Chiefs signed Josh Gordon. Gordon will not play Sunday towards the Eagles and maybe for a sport or two after that, so the Chiefs might want to scheme higher to get Hill open no less than till he does play. — Adam Teicher
Are we a 100-catch season from WR Hunter Renfrow?
No. Oh, you need elaboration? After three video games, Renfrow is on tempo for 90.7 catches, so he’d want an enormous uptick to get to triple digits, proper? Plus, whereas Renfrow could be Derek Carr‘s safety blanket on third down, tight finish Darren Waller is goal No. 1. Then there’s the maturation of Henry Ruggs III and Bryan Edwards, particularly late in video games. — Paul Gutierrez
Allen has 21 receptions for 258 yards, and Williams has 22 receptions for 295 yards. Williams has a mean depth of goal of 8.Eight yards; Allen is at 8.6. Allen has 33 targets to Williams’ 31. There simply is not a lot separating them, and that figures to be the case all season. — Shelley Smith
Did Dalton Schultz lock up the TE1 function along with his large Week Three efficiency?
It is wanting that approach, however they may proceed to lean on a two-tight-end look, which implies Blake Jarwin will get the ball as effectively. There was one scoring drive final week vs. Philadelphia wherein the Cowboys solely used 12 personnel. However Schultz has developed a lot better than anyone with the Cowboys may have thought. He has a knack for getting open, and his means after the catch is considerably stunning as a result of he isn’t overly quick or sudden. He has QB Dak Prescott‘s belief and so does Jarwin, however proper now he is getting extra appears to be like. — Todd Archer
Discipline Yates and Mike Clay share how they view Dalton Schultz after his greatest sport of the season.
Is it truthful to name RB Saquon Barkley near full energy after 22 touches and almost 85% of the snaps?
Bodily? Completely. The Giants have been so assured in Barkley’s means to deal with a full workload final week that that they had his backup, Devontae Booker, inactive. Offensive coordinator Jason Garrett mentioned he is doing a “remarkably good job.” After all, Barkley may nonetheless knock off some rust. He is lacking holes and working timidly, at instances. However that ought to get higher with time as he turns into extra assured in his knee. The explosion is coming. — Jordan Raanan
Is Jalen Hurts too restricted as a passer for fantasy managers to depend on any of his pass-catchers?
Hurts is able to engineering a profitable passing sport (see Week 1 towards Atlanta), however the Eagles’ offense has gotten away from what labored: fast, rhythm throws and play motion anchored right into a dynamic run sport. Assuming they get again to that, Hurts’ supporting forged ought to see an uptick in manufacturing, particularly rookie DeVonta Smith. — Tim McManus
Did we overrate this protection coming into the season?
Sure, it was overrated. Based mostly on the schedule and the quarterbacks it was going to face, being a top-five protection wasn’t going to occur, however anticipating that unit to be across the prime 10 with this entrance? Not an unreal expectation by any means. The subsequent two weeks could be a very good time to select that protection up with video games vs. Atlanta (27th in yards; 27th in factors) and New Orleans (31st in yards; 22nd in factors). It is an opportunity to get some momentum. Nevertheless, after that it is purchaser beware. Washington performs Kansas Metropolis, Inexperienced Bay, Denver and Tampa Bay. — John Keim
Simply 12 rush yards for Justin Fields in Week 3: By Chicago design, or only a robust exhibiting from Cleveland’s protection?
Undoubtedly not by design! The Bears’ offense was a complete mess in Week Three and Fields bought caught in the course of it. Nothing labored for Chicago. Nothing. Belief me once I say the general plan is to focus on Fields’ distinctive working means. The Bears simply had a nasty day on the workplace in Cleveland. Search for Fields to run far more sooner or later. — Jeff Dickerson
D’Andre Swift has 19 catches via three weeks: Can he maintain this quantity (100-plus catch tempo) in an offense with restricted choices?
Sure. That is undoubtedly potential, barring harm. And what’s spectacular is that he has been in a position to accomplish these numbers with out beginning the primary three video games whereas being restricted due to an ongoing groin harm. Truly, his manufacturing may improve because the teaching workers continues to ease him into the combo with extra alternatives every week. “He is a dynamic participant and I feel he is simply, each week, he is enhancing, and the extra that he exhibits, the extra we placed on him,” Lions coach Dan Campbell mentioned. — Eric Woodyard
Discipline Yates and Matthew Berry talk about how a lot worth D’Andre Swift has in fantasy heading into the Lions’ matchup vs. the Bears.
That is correct. Dillon’s taking part in time has been pretty constant the primary three weeks (starting from 16 to 19 snaps in every sport), and so long as Jones is a) productive and b) coach Matt LaFleur sticks with the run sport, then it is Jones because the A-1 again till he cannot do it anymore. It is arduous to be the “finest working again tandem within the NFL,” as Dillon predicted, if one again will get the majority of the touches. — Rob Demovsky
Do you anticipate Tyler Conklin to be extra concerned after the large sport?
Sadly, Conklin is working via glute and elbow accidents that sidelined him from follow on Wednesday and saved him restricted Thursday, so that would influence how a lot he performs in Week 4. Ben Ellefson, the tight finish the Vikings claimed from Jacksonville, has gotten extra alternative than Chris Herndon, the tight finish Minnesota traded for when Irv Smith Jr. went down in August. Neither, nonetheless, has performed an element within the passing sport. This may not be the week to place any Vikings tight ends in your lineup. — Courtney Cronin
Does RB Cordarrelle Patterson‘s versatility make him a very good guess for 12 to 15 touches on a weekly foundation?
Sure. Atlanta regularly likes what Patterson offers — each on offense and as a returner. Should you’re in a non-PPR league, Patterson isn’t an advisable play simply because whereas he is averaging 4.05 yards per carry, he hasn’t been over Three yards a carry since Week 1. In a PPR league, although, Patterson is an efficient play as a result of Matt Ryan continues to make use of him as a checkdown possibility. Between speeding and receiving, Patterson will get between 12 and 15 touches a sport (though that would reduce if Atlanta will get in put-away mode — which hasn’t occurred). Should you get return yards in your league, that provides to his worth, too. — Michael Rothstein
No. Whereas I anticipate Marshall to be an enormous issue within the offense this season, the Panthers have not forgotten Anderson. Coach Matt Rhule famous lately that Anderson has been open and the crew has to discover a method to get him the ball in house extra. With Christian McCaffrey out just a few weeks, search for Anderson’s function to extend. — David Newton
After a career-high 24 carries in Week 3, ought to we expect a extra ‘conventional’ working again function for Alvin Kamara?
Sure, however not fairly to this extent. The Saints have at all times made it a precedence to maintain Kamara wholesome for the lengthy haul, speaking a few “pitch depend” for him in years previous. So I do not assume they need 27 touches to be the norm. However on the identical time, they acknowledge that he’s by far their most beneficial playmaker whereas Michael Thomas is harm, so that they’ll do what it takes to win video games. And that would imply extra speeding makes an attempt since he may not get the identical quantity of passing targets from Jameis Winston as he did in previous years with Drew Brees at quarterback. — Mike Triplett
Ought to we take something away from Giovani Bernard seeing 10 targets in Week 3?
Ronald Jones II and Leonard Fournette have struggled at instances with ball safety, however the large factor is that the Bucs have been taking part in the Rams from behind and he is their third-down working again and hurry-up again. He has missed follow this week with a knee harm, although, so I would contemplate choices elsewhere this week. It would be dangerous. — Jenna Laine
Who’s the WR2 on this offense for the remainder of the season when it comes to targets and touchdowns?
On paper, it is A.J. Green, and rightfully so. However in actuality, who’ll be the WR2 when it comes to targets, catches, yards, touchdowns and influence will change each week primarily based on the sport plan, how defenses play the Cardinals and who’s scorching. It is not very best for fantasy managers, however then there’s this: The Cardinals’ prime 4 receivers — DeAndre Hopkins, Christian Kirk, Rondale Moore and Inexperienced — all have no less than 150 receiving yards and no less than one landing via three video games. There’s plenty of stability this yr, which, once more, is not very best for fantasy homeowners, however the flip aspect is that every one the receivers will get their targets and their alternatives. — Josh Weinfuss
Is the gradual begin for WR Robert Woods one thing to fret about?
The Matthew Stafford-Woods connection all through coaching camp was so easy that it has been gorgeous how not often he has been focused by Stafford via three video games. Stafford has focused Cooper Kupp 33 instances, compared to Woods’ 19. Woods continues to be the consummate teammate regardless of not getting the ball as typically as he’d seemingly favor, however anticipate in some unspecified time in the future for coach Sean McVay to dial up one thing to make the most of Woods’ full ability set. — Lindsey Thiry
Was Sunday evening an indicator that WR Brandon Aiyuk is out of the doghouse and able to ship after a robust rookie season?
Properly, coach Kyle Shanahan would inform you Aiyuk was by no means in any form of doghouse, however no matter he was within the first week, Sunday evening was definitely a step in the precise route. Maybe extra necessary than the manufacturing — 4 catches for 37 yards and a landing — was the workload. Aiyuk performed 60 of 70 offensive snaps. He is again to taking over a starter’s reps and with that ought to come the manufacturing that’s anticipated of him in his second season. — Nick Wagoner
What has occurred to RB Chris Carson‘s involvement within the passing sport the previous two weeks?
Carson’s zero targets towards Tennessee is head-scratching, nevertheless it’s much less of a thriller than what occurred towards Minnesota. The Seahawks had the ball for under 24 minutes, and two of their possessions have been end-of-half drives wherein Travis Homer took over. Homer was additionally in on Seattle’s second-to-last possession for causes unknown. He is not going to be a high-volume receiver out of Seattle’s backfield (despite the fact that he has the abilities to be one), however he ought to issue extra into their passing sport than he has of late. — Brady Henderson