There are some players that are just matchup-proof in fantasy football. But after those elite options, the matchups should very much come into play and help you set your fantasy football lineups. Every week this article will give you the best and toughest matchups at each position with a bunch of stats you need to know for that upcoming week!
Best Week 3 QB Matchups
Mitchell Trubisky vs. Falcons: The Falcons have allowed a league-high 35.79 fantasy PPG to QBs this season. They rank in the top two in passing yards allowed per game (386), passing touchdowns allowed (five) and rushing TDs allowed to QBs (three). The Falcons have allowed over 31 fantasy points to both QBs they’ve faced this season. Now Trubisky may not continue that streak, but he showed us he can take advantage of favorable matchups in Week 1 going for nearly 25 fantasy points against the Lions. He is a nice sleeper for those in two-QB formats or in daily.
Dak Prescott vs. Seahawks: Seattle is allowing 29.24 fantasy PPG to QBs this season, the third-most in the NFL. They’ve also allowed an astonishing 423.5 passing yards per game to QBs. They also gave up over 24 fantasy points to both the starters they have faced this season. This also has the potential to be the highest-scoring game of the week, meaning that there will be plenty of opportunities for Prescott to put up points, in what is a great matchup. He is a must-start option this week.
Other favorable QB matchups: Baker Mayfield vs. WAS, Kyler Murray vs. DET, Ryan Tannehill vs. MIN
Best Week 3 RB Matchups
Austin Ekeler/Joshua Kelley vs. Panthers: The Carolina Panthers are the best matchup for RBs in fantasy football. This season they are allowing 46 fantasy PPG to RBs. That is the most in the NFL through two weeks. And before you think it’s just two weeks, they also allowed the most fantasy points to RBs in 2019. And since 2019 they’ve allowed 36 touchdowns to RBs. That is 12 more than any other team in that span. They’ve also allowed Josh Jacobs to finish as the RB1 in Week 1 and the Bucs RBs to combine for nearly 40 fantasy points, with both scoring a touchdown. Ekeler and Kelley are both top-20 RBs heading into Week 3.
Miles Sanders vs. Bengals: The Bengals have allowed 36.75 fantasy PPG to RBs this season, the third-most in the NFL. They have also allowed a league-high 179 rushing yards per game to RBs this season to go along with five scrimmage TDs allowed to the position (second-most in NFL). Sanders racked up 23 touches in his Week 2 debut, showing that all health concerns are behind him. He is a must-start option in this fantastic matchup.
Other favorable RB matchups: Kenyan Drake vs. DET, Jonathan Taylor vs. NYJ, Alvin Kamara vs. GB
Best Week 3 WR Matchups
Cowboys WRs vs. Seahawks: The Seahawks are allowing 67.5 fantasy PPG to WRs this season. That is the most in the league but to put that into perspective, only one other team is allowing over 48 fantasy PPG to the position. They’ve given up 365.5 receiving yards per game to receivers; that is over 100 more than the next closest team. So yeah, receivers have gone off against the Seahawks this season. The Cowboys’ trio of receivers are in a position to have their best game yet. Amari Cooper is a WR1, CeeDee Lamb is a WR2 and Michael Gallup is more of a WR3 or flex, but all come with sky-high upside this week.
Titans WRs vs. Vikings: Above I said only one other team was allowing over 48 fantasy PPG to WRs, and that team is the Vikings, who are giving up 53.05 fantasy PPG to the position. They are allowing over 200 receiving yards per game and a league-leading five receiving TDs to WRs this year. This Vikings defense just isn’t what it once was, especially in the secondary. A.J. Brown is not looking likely to play in Week 3, but if he suits up, I would start him. Corey Davis is a WR3 with upside in this strong matchup.
Other favorable WR matchups: Bucs WRs vs. DEN, Bears WRs vs. ATL, Football Team WRs vs. CLE, Seahawks WRs vs. DAL
Best Week 3 TE Matchups
Logan Thomas vs. Browns: The Browns have allowed a league-high 25.4 fantasy PPG to TEs this season. An early season trend seems to be teams using their tight ends to attack the Browns defense. Mark Andrews scored 22.8 fantasy points against them, catching two TDs, against them in Week 1. In Week 2, C.J. Uzomah caught a touchdown before leaving with an injury. Drew Sample then checked in and caught seven of nine targets for 45 yards. That bodes well for Thomas, who has seen at least eight targets in both games this season. He also leads his team with three red zone and end zone targets this season, so he has a strong chance of scoring a TD.
Drew Sample vs. Eagles: As mentioned above, Sample had to fill in last week after Uzomah was injured and he ended up seeing nine targets. That is pretty big volume and it could be a trend as Joe Burrow has averaged 10.5 pass attempts per game to his tight ends this season, tied for the third-most in the NFL. The Eagles have allowed 21.05 fantasy PPG this season, the fifth-most in the NFL. They’ve also allowed a league-most four touchdowns to tight ends this season. Sample is a tight end you can grab off the waiver wire and stream in a nice matchup.
Other favorable TE matchups: Travis Kelce vs. BAL, Tyler Higbee vs. BUF, Jimmy Graham vs. ATL
Toughest Week 3 QB Matchups
Justin Herbert vs. Panthers: Herbert played well in his debut scoring nearly 25 fantasy points and taking the Chiefs to the very brink. He will be asked to start once again but this week is against the Panthers who are allowing just 11.12 fantasy PPG to QBs this season. But as discussed earlier, their defense has been run all over. This could be a week where the Chargers rely heavily on their running backs throughout and do not ask their rookie QB to do too much. Herbert showed last week what his upside is, but this week I would try to go in another direction.
Matt Ryan vs. Bears: Ryan has been awesome so far this season, but this is his toughest matchup to date. The Bears on the year have allowed 11.96 fantasy PPG to QBs, the third-fewest in the NFL. The Bears have more interceptions (two) than TD passes allowed to QBs (one). Last season the Bears allowed just 17 passing TDs all year and held QBs to 13.85 fantasy PPG (seventh-fewest). This is not just a two week thing but a trend that the Bears play QBs tough. Ryan is more a borderline QB1 than the slam dunk he is normally.
Other tough QB matchups: Sam Darnold vs. IND, Carson Wentz vs. CIN, Patrick Mahomes vs. BAL, Tom Brady vs. DEN, Deshaun Watson vs. PIT
Toughest Week 3 RB Matchups
Clyde Edwards-Helaire vs. Ravens: The Ravens are allowing the fewest fantasy PPG to RBs this season (12.6). That is after allowing the fourth-fewest to the position last season (18.9). This is a very tough matchup for the rookie back, especially when you consider the Ravens have allowed just seven catches to backs this year. CEH is a great talent and plays for one of the best offenses in the league, so he can overcome the matchup. But he is more of a high-end RB2 for me this week rather than the RB1 he is normally.
David Johnson vs. Steelers: The Steelers are allowing 16.75 fantasy PPG to RBs this season, the fourth-fewest in the NFL. This is nothing new though as the Steelers allowed the fifth -fewest fantasy PPG to the position last season (19.38). And that Steelers defense only got tougher and tougher as the year went on and they look like that force once again. They are only allowing 48.5 rushing YPG to backs this season (remember Saquon Week 1?) and the hope for Johnson is that he can be a big enough factor in the passing game to make up for the struggles he will likely have on the ground. I would try to get away from DJ or lower him into the flex range this week.
Other tough RB matchups: Nick Chubb/Kareem Hunt vs. WAS, Mike Davis vs. LAC, Frank Gore vs. IND, Leonard Fournette vs. DEN
Toughest Week 3 WR Matchups
Lions WRs vs. Cardinals: The Cardinals have allowed a league-low 22.45 fantasy PPG to WRs this season. Receivers are averaging a league-low 8.5 catches per game, just 119.5 receiving yards per game (second-lowest) and have scored a lone touchdown against this Cards secondary this season. Matthew Stafford and Marvin Jones have been disappointing for fantasy so far this season and I am not looking to start them this week if I have other options. If you have been waiting on Kenny Golladay, you can get him in if he suits up but he has some boom-or-bust risk with him this week.
Chiefs WRs vs. Ravens: Both secondaries in this game are very strong. The Ravens have allowed the second-fewest fantasy PPG to wide outs this season (25.25) and have yet to allow a WR to score a TD. Tyreek Hill is amazing in his own right and is very capable of beating this matchup and having a nice day. But the rest of the Chiefs receivers? Avoid them all this week. On the other side of this one, Marquise Brown is the only WR I would trust against the Chiefs secondary, and even he is lower in the rankings this week than the previous two.
Other tough WR matchups: Eagles WRs vs. CIN, Chargers WRs vs. CAR, Chiefs WRs vs. BAL, Bills WRs vs. LAR, Falcons WRs vs. CHI
Toughest Week 3 TE Matchups
Evan Engram vs. 49ers: The 49ers have allowed a total of one catch for five yards to a tight end this season. That’s it. That’s good for a total of 0.75 fantasy PPG to the position this season, by far the fewest in the league. Now I am not saying Engram will score less than one fantasy point, but the Niners have been so tough against the position dating back to last year when they allowed the sixth-fewest fantasy PPG to TEs (9.7). Engram may see volume with the Giants being so banged up on offense, but I still value him as more of a TE2 this week. If you have another option, use it this week.
Chris Herndon vs. Colts: As a native New Yorker, I can tell you I am not trying to pick on the New York tight ends here, they just have tough matchups! The Colts are allowing just 2.05 fantasy PPG to TEs this season, the second lowest in the NFL. On the year they have allowed just three catches for 11 yards. And despite the Jets being banged up, the volume just hasn’t been there for Herndon. He is being asked to block a lot and has less than 10 fantasy points on the year. Avoid him this week.
Other tough TE matchups: Darren Waller vs. NE, Hunter Henry vs CAR, Noah Fant vs TB
Fantasy Matchup Stats to Know
Here are matchup stats to help you make your Week 3 lineup decisions:
ARI: Not allowed a Top-15 fantasy QB this season
ARI allowing 3rd-most rec YPG to RBs this season (79.5)
CAR allowing 32.5 PPG this season (6th-most in NFL)
CAR allowing 46.0 PPG to RBs this season (most in NFL)
CHI: Not allowed a Top-25 fantasy WR this season
CHI allowing 30.6 fantasy PPG to WRs this season (7th-fewest in NFL)
CIN allowed 4th-fewest fantasy PPG to QBs this season (12.14)
DAL allowing 2.0 pass TD/gm this season (T-9th most in NFL)
DAL allowing 7th-most fantasy PPG to WRs this season (42.8)
DEN: Not allowed a Top-15 fantasy QB this season
DEN allowing 47.35 fantasy PPG to WRs this season (3rd-most in NFL)
DET allowing 21.69 fantasy PPG to QBs (7th-most in NFL)
DET allowing 34.5 PPG this season (3rd-most in NFL)
HOU allowing 33.5 PPG this season (5th-most in NFL)
LAC allowing 3rd-fewest fantasy PPG to RBs this season (15.1)
LAC: Not allowed a Top-25 fantasy RB this season
LAR: Allowed Top-10 fantasy RB in both games this season
LV allowing 7th-most total YPG this season (406.0)
MIN allowed 5 pass TD this season (T-2nd most in NFL)
MIN allowing 2nd-most fantasy PPG to WRs this season (53.05)
MIN allowed 41.6 fantasy pts to Davante Adams in Wk 1
NE allowing 16.19 fantasy PPG to RBs since 2019 (fewest in NFL)
NE has allowed 2 rush TD to RBs since 2019 (fewest in NFL)
NYG allowing 4th-fewest fantasy PPG to TEs this season (4.55)
NYG allowing 4th-fewest fantasy PPG to TEs this season (4.55)
NYJ allowing 7th-most fantasy PPG to RBs this season (31.65)
PHI allowed 4 pass TD, 0 INT this season
PIT allowing 18.5 PPG this season (T-6th fewest in NFL)
PIT allowed 20+ fantasy pts to a QB in 1 of last 16 games
SEA allowed Top-8 fantasy QBs in both games
SEA allowed four Top-12 fantasy WRs in 2 games
SEA allowing most rec YPG to WRs this season (365.5)
SF allowing 2nd-fewest fantasy PPG to RBs since 2019 (17.13)
SF allowing fewest rec YPG to RBs since 2019 (24.1)
WAS allowing 13.7 fantasy PPG to RBs (2nd-fewest in NFL)
All stats used are entering Week 3. Make sure to follow Michael F. Florio on Twitter or Instagram @MichaelFFlorio.
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