The injury bug bit good and hard across the National Football League in Week 3, felling quarterbacks (such as Michael Vick of the Philadelphia Eagles), running backs (like Frank Gore of the San Francisco 49ers) and wide receivers (such as Kenny Britt of the Tennessee Titans) alike.
To aid fantasy owners scrambling to fill new holes in their lineups, as well as those who are simply trying to better their squads, here are five players who should figure prominently in fantasy waiver wire claims submitted this week.
Week 3 Stats: 6 receptions, 84 yards
The 6'5" second year pro has 16 receptions for 167 yards and a score over the past two games, emerging as the No. 2 option in Buffalo's passing attack and becoming a big part of the reason why the Bills are a surprising 3-0.
If you're a fantasy football owner in need of help at the position (and there are more than a few), then David Nelson should be your first priority when submitting waiver claims.
Week 3 Stats: 2 carries, 10 yards
With Cincinnati Bengals running back Cedric Benson likely to begin serving his three-game suspension for violating the league's personal conduct policy, it will be up to fourth-year veteran Bernard Scott to be the primary ball carrier in the Bengals backfield for at least a few weeks, and any time you can secure a starting running back off the waiver wire, he becomes a fantasy priority.
Week 3 Stats: Did not play
The status of Philadelphia Eagles starting quarterback Michael Vick for this week is iffy at best, and given how poorly Mike Kafka played in relief of Vick last week and the fact that quarterback Vince Young's hamstring is reportedly healthy, it may well be the former Rookie of the Year who gets the call in Week 4 if Vick can't go, making Vince Young a viable waiver target for fantasy owners with a need at the position.
Week 3 Stats: 8 receptions, 92 yards, 1 touchdown
Tennessee Titans wide receiver Kenny Britt tore his ACL and MCL in Sunday's win over the Denver Broncos and will miss the rest of the 2011 season, meaning a much larger role in the Titans offense for seventh-year wide receiver Nate Washington. If Washington can overcome the inconsistency that has dogged him throughout his career, he could make for a very nice addition to fantasy football rosters.
Week 3 Stats: 9 carries, 26 yards, 1 touchdown, 2 receptions, 12 yards
Running back Frank Gore has struggled to this point in the season for the San Francisco 49ers and left last week's game with an ankle injury, leaving his status for Week 4 in question. Should Gore be unable to play this Sunday against the Philadelphia Eagles, rookie Kendall Hunter would assume the role of starter for the 49ers, making him a decent speculative add for fantasy teams with a need at running back.