Kenbrell Thompkins' Updated 2013 Fantasy Outlook After Week 3

Steven Cook@@stevencookinFeatured Columnist IVSeptember 22, 2013

FOXBORO, MA - SEPTEMBER 22:  Kenbrell Thompkins #85 of the New England Patriots runs the ball into the end zone for a touchdown during the first quarter in a game with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Gillette Stadium on September 22, 2013 in Foxboro, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jim Rogash/Getty Images)
Jim Rogash/Getty Images

New England Patriots wideout Kenbrell Thompkins finally rewarded fantasy owners who bought into his much talked-about potential and preseason hype. He finished with two touchdowns and 41 receiving yards on three catches in a big Week 3 performance against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.    

After not reaching the end zone through his first two weeks despite emerging in a starting role, Thompkins hauled in a 16-yard score from Tom Brady with 7:37 in the second quarter, followed up by a five-yard score with less than a minute left in the opening half.  

His only non-scoring grab on the day was his longest—a 20-yard pickup. 

On the day, Thompkins made a splash that a rookie hasn't done in New England in 30 years, per ESPN Stats & Information:

The rookie is pegged to be one of Brady's favorite targets this season after the departure of Wes Welker, and that's only been amplified with an injury to Danny Amendola, per ESPN. Through two weeks, he was targeted 21 times, including 14 in his debut—tied for a game-high with Amendola. 

FOXBORO, MA - SEPTEMBER 12:  Wide receiver Kenbrell Thompkins #85 of the New England Patriots makes a catch in the second quarter against the New York Jets at Gillette Stadium on September 12, 2013 in Foxboro, Massachusetts.  (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Get
Jared Wickerham/Getty Images

But all of those passes going his way didn't result in top production, as he only had six receptions for 89 yards in the first two games combined.

Despite Thompkins' inability to make a splash fantasy-wise through two weeks, Brady continues throwing to him early and often—he did so seven times against Tampa Bay on Sunday. 

However, as great quarterbacks like Brady typically do, he also got many of his lesser-known receivers in on the action. Aaron Dobson (10 targets, 52 yards) and Brandon Bolden (six targets, 49 yards) emerged as potential impact players in the passing game. 

But as long as Thompkins continues to show signs of improvement and retains his starting job, he'll be a must-start in fantasy football.