Fantasy Football Week 3 Rankings: Updated Positional Breakdown for Flex and PPR

Paul KasabianSenior ContributorSeptember 23, 2017

CINCINNATI, OH - SEPTEMBER 14: A.J. Green #18 of the Cincinnati Bengals runs after a catch during a game against the Houston Texans at Paul Brown Stadium on September 14, 2017 in Cincinnati, Ohio. The Texans won 13-9. (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images)
Joe Robbins/Getty Images

The important thing to remember this early in the football season is the 2017 campaign is just two weeks old.

Players who have looked great may come back to earth. On the flip side, others who have struggled can rebound and perform well.

We'll take a look at some players in the latter category. More specifically, we're predicting that a few players who got off to bad starts will use their Week 3 matchups to catapult themselves to excellent performances and seasons.

Here's a look at some updated fantasy football rankings for Week 3, with a focus on running backs, wide receivers and tight ends.

Projections are based off Yahoo fantasy scoring for points-per-reception leagues.

         

Top 10 Running Backs

1. Kareem Hunt (Kansas City Chiefs) at Los Angeles Chargers: 100 rushing yards, 2 TD, 3 receptions, 30 receiving yards (28 points).

2. Jay Ajayi (Miami Dolphins) at New York Jets: 130 rushing yards, 2 TD (25 points).

3. Ezekiel Elliott (Dallas Cowboys) at Arizona Cardinals: 120 rushing yards, 1 TD, 4 receptions, 40 yards (24 points).

4. LeSean McCoy (Buffalo Bills) vs. Denver Broncos: 80 rushing yards, 1 TD, 4 receptions, 50 receiving yards (23 points).

5. Tarik Cohen (Chicago Bears) at Pittsburgh Steelers: 30 rushing yards, 8 receptions, 60 receiving yards, 1 TD (23 points).

6. Ty Montgomery (Green Bay Packers) vs. Cincinnati Bengals: 60 rushing yards, 5 receptions, 50 receiving yards, 1 TD (22 points).

7. Le'Veon Bell (Pittsburgh Steelers) at Chicago Bears: 120 rushing yards, 4 receptions, 50 receiving yards (21 points).

8. Melvin Gordon (Los Angeles Chargers) vs. Kansas City Chiefs: 50 rushing yards, 4 receptions, 50 receiving yards, 1 TD (20 points).

9. Devonta Freeman (Atlanta Falcons) at Detroit Lions: 60 rushing yards, 1 TD, 3 receptions, 40 receiving yards (19 points).

10. Chris Thompson (Washington Redskins) vs. Oakland Raiders: 30 rushing yards, 5 receptions, 50 receiving yards, 1 TD (19 points).

       

Analysis

Pittsburgh Steelers running back Le'Veon Bell is off to an unusually slow start, as he's amassed just 138 yards from scrimmage and no touchdowns in his first two games.

However, expect this mini slump to end soon. Keep in mind that Bell missed most of training camp in the midst of a contract dispute, so it's possible he needed to shake off some rust.

Bell is still one of the best running backs in football, if not the best. His patience, vision and ability to find gaps in the defense are virtually unmatched by any other runner.

He's also a workhorse who is capable of giving the Steelers 30-plus touches per game to help grind the clock down.

Bell should bounce back against a Chicago Bears team that looked awful in a 29-7 loss to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in Week 2.

       

Top 10 Wide Receivers

1. Antonio Brown (Pittsburgh Steelers) at Chicago Bears: 8 receptions, 140 yards, 2 TD (34 points).

2. Julio Jones (Atlanta Falcons) at Detroit Lions: 10 receptions, 130 yards, 1 TD (29 points).

3. A.J. Green (Cincinnati Bengals) at Green Bay Packers: 9 receptions, 120 yards, 1 TD (27 points).

4. Michael Crabtree (Oakland Raiders) at Washington Redskins: 8 receptions, 100 yards, 1 TD (24 points).

5. Jordy Nelson (Green Bay Packers) vs. Cincinnati Bengals: 8 catches, 90 yards, 1 TD (23 points).

6. Keenan Allen (Los Angeles Chargers) vs. Kansas City Chiefs: 7 receptions, 90 yards, 1 TD (22 points).

7. Golden Tate (Detroit Lions) vs. Atlanta Falcons: 7 receptions, 80 yards, 1 TD (21 points).

8. T.Y. Hilton (Indianapolis Colts) vs. Cleveland Browns: 7 receptions, 80 yards, 1 TD (21 points).

9. Odell Beckham Jr. (New York Giants) at Philadelphia Eagles: 6 receptions, 80 yards, 1 TD (20 points).

10. Mike Evans (Tampa Bay Buccaneers) at Minnesota Vikings: 6 receptions, 80 yards, 1 TD (20 points).

       

Analysis

The Cincinnati Bengals fired their offensive coordinator, Ken Zampese, after just two games in which they scored a combined nine points.

After a 13-9 loss in Week 2 to the Houston Texans, Bengals wide receiver A.J. Green made his displeasure clear. Here are some of his comments, per Paul Dehner Jr. of the Cincinnati Enquirer: "We are playing like s--t right now. We got to find a way to get our playmakers the ball. That's it. It's a superstar-driven league. You are not going to win without them."

It's easy to put two and two together.

First and foremost, Green is by far the best player on the Bengals. Cincinnati can't afford to have him unhappy if it wants to succeed.

Second, given Green's comments and the ensuing move, one has to imagine a bunch of targets are going his way on Sunday against the high-powered Green Bay Packers in Lambeau Field.

The Bengals are going to need to pass successfully to even stay in the game. A likely scenario is they fall behind early, prompting a bunch of looks in Green's direction.

Therefore, Green has the potential for a breakout game.

        

Top 10 Tight Ends

1. Zach Ertz (Philadelphia Eagles) vs. New York Giants: 7 receptions, 100 receiving yards, 2 TD (29 points).

2. Travis Kelce (Kansas City Chiefs) at Los Angeles Chargers: 7 receptions, 80 yards, 1 TD (21 points).

3. Rob Gronkowski (New England Patriots) vs. Houston Texans: 5 receptions, 70 yards, 1 TD (18 points).

4. Evan Engram (New York Giants) at Philadelphia Eagles: 4 receptions, 50 yards, 1 TD (15 points).

5. Charles Clay (Buffalo Bills) vs. Denver Broncos: 4 receptions, 50 yards, 1 TD (15 points).

6. Hunter Henry (Los Angeles Chargers) vs. Kansas City Chiefs: 4 receptions, 50 yards, 1 TD (15 points).

7. Delanie Walker (Tennessee Titans) vs. Seattle Seahawks: 4 receptions, 50 yards, 1 TD (15 points).

8. Benjamin Watson (Baltimore Ravens) at Jacksonville Jaguars (in London): 4 receptions, 50 receiving yards, 1 TD (15 points).

9. Jared Cook (Oakland Raiders) at Washington Redskins: 4 receptions, 40 yards, 1 TD (14 points).

10. Ed Dickson (Carolina Panthers) vs. New Orleans Saints: 3 receptions, 30 yards, 1 TD (12 points).

       

Analysis

Los Angeles Chargers tight end Hunter Henry was held without a reception against the Denver Broncos in the season opener, but he rebounded against the Miami Dolphins in Week 2 with seven catches for 80 yards.

Expect stat lines more akin to that game than the Week 1 contest moving forward.

Henry has to split time with Antonio Gates at his position. With all due respect to Gates, who is a surefire first-ballot Hall of Famer, Henry is the better player at this juncture, and it wouldn't be a big surprise to see him stealing more playing time as the season goes along simply because he is that good.

The second-year pro had eight touchdown catches in his rookie year even though he shared the field with Gates then as well. He's one of the best red-zone targets in football, and the matchup with the Chiefs could be a sneaky shootout, as Kansas City has an excellent offense but has some holes on the defensive side.

Henry could be in line for a big day and season.