Fantasy Football 2012 Week 3 Rankings: Top 25 Quarterbacks

Eric StashinSenior Writer ISeptember 18, 2012

CHARLOTTE, NC - SEPTEMBER 16:   Cam Newton #1 of the Carolina Panthers drops back to pass against the New Orleans Saints during their game at Bank of America Stadium on September 16, 2012 in Charlotte, North Carolina.  (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)
Streeter Lecka/Getty Images

Two weeks of the NFL season have come and gone, giving fantasy owners an awful lot to think about.  Has Robert Griffin III emerged as a must start option most weeks?  Has Aaron Rodgers disappointed enough to send him spiraling down the rankings?  What about how we should be rankings guys like Peyton Manning or Jay Cutler?

Let’s answer those questions and all the rest as we look towards Week 3 of the NFL season:

  1. Cam Newton – Carolina Panthers – vs. New York Giants
  2. Aaron Rodgers – Green Bay Packers – at Seattle
  3. Drew Brees – New Orleans Saints – vs. Kansas City
  4. Tom Brady – New England Patriots – at Baltimore
  5. Tony Romo – Dallas Cowboys – vs. Tampa Bay
  6. Eli Manning – New York Giants – at Carolina
  7. Matthew Stafford – Detroit Lions – at Tennessee
  8. Robert Griffin III – Washington Redskins – vs. Cincinnati
  9. Matt Ryan – Atlanta Falcons – at San Diego
  10. Michael Vick – Philadelphia Eagles – at Arizona
  11. Andy Dalton – Cincinnati Bengals – at Washington
  12. Philip Rivers – San Diego Chargers – vs. Atlanta
  13. Peyton Manning – Denver Broncos – vs. Houston
  14. Ben Roethlisberger – Pittsburgh Steelers – at Oakland
  15. Joe Flacco – Baltimore Ravens – vs. New England
  16. Jay Cutler – Chicago Bears – vs. St. Louis
  17. Matt Schaub – Houston Texans – at Denver
  18. Carson Palmer – Oakland Raiders – vs. Pittsburgh
  19. Andrew Luck – Indianapolis Colts – vs. Jacksonville
  20. Matt Cassel – Kansas City Chiefs – at New Orleans
  21. Alex Smith – San Francisco 49ers – at Minnesota
  22. Sam Bradford – St. Louis Rams – at Chicago
  23. Josh Freeman – Tampa Bay Buccaneers – at Dallas
  24. Christian Ponder – Minnesota Vikings – vs. San Francisco
  25. Ryan Fitzpatrick – Buffalo Bills – at Cleveland


  • You have to think that the Tampa Bay Buccaneers are going to make a few adjustments after Eli Manning absolutely torched them for 501 yards,  three TDs and three INT in Week 2.  That said, how can we not like Tony Romo this week?  He’s right there among the Top 5 or 6 options in the league (I could see him and Manning having very similar performances).
  • How will the loss of Aaron Hernandez impact the Patriots’ passing attack?  It obviously played a role in Week 2, but with a full week to get things in order you have to think Tom Brady and company are going to get things on track.  With the Ravens’ passing defense not quite what we expected (Michael Vick threw for 371 yards against them), it’s hard not to like Brady this week.  Then again, is there any week we don’t like him?  When a “poor” week is throwing for 316 yards, but only 1 TD, we all know how good he is.
  • The New York Giants defense allowed Josh Freeman to throw for 243 yards, two TD and two INT, watching him make numerous big plays.  With Cam Newton continuing to show his talent, while also ability with his legs (he rushed for 71 yards in Week 2), it’s hard to imagine them stopping him.
  • Robert Griffin took a small step backwards in his second game, at least throwing the ball, showing us why we don’t induct people into the Hall of Fame off of one game.  While he completed 20 of 29 passes, he had just 206 yards, one TD and one INT.  However, he did rush for 82 yards and 2 TD.  With 124 rushing yards in two weeks, he’s proven that even if he struggles through the air (which he didn’t really struggle) he is going to be a QB1.  If Pierre Garcon returns to the field, you would also expect his passing numbers to improve.  Yes, I think people need to be a little bit more cautious on him, but he remains a must use option.
  • In two games the Washington Redskins have allowed 313.5 passing yards per game, as well as six TD.  Andy Dalton, meanwhile, has been taking a step in the right direction himself (539 passing yards for three TD and two INT).  He is continuing to form a rapport with Andrew Hawkins and we all know the potential of A.J. Green (12 receptions for 128 yards).  Throw in Jermaine Gresham, Brandon Tate and a few others and this should be another big week for the Bengals passing attack.  I would consider Dalton a QB1 for the coming week without question.
  • I know there is a lot of excitement surrounding Peyton Manning, but the Houston Texans are going to be an extremely tough test.  Temper expectations this week and consider him more of a high-end QB2.
  • Does anyone expect Jay Cutler not to bounce back strong against the St. Louis Rams?  I know there are frustrated owners at this point, but as a QB2 I definitely would not shy away.
  • What hurts Matt Schaub is the Texans’ potential to depend on the running game instead of their passing attack.  While I would expect better results in Week 3 (he only threw for 195 yards in Week 2 and has just one TD pass all year), it’s still hard to consider him anything but a mid-level QB2.
  • I wouldn’t get too excited over Matt Cassel’s big week (301 yards, two TD, one INT), as the Chiefs were trying to play catchup.  Then again, don’t you think they could be in the same situation against the Saints this week?  I would consider Cassel a solid, low-end QB2, but don’t get distracted by his one big week and push him up more than that.

Make sure to check out all of our Week 3 rankings: