Best & Worst QB, RB and WR Matchups: Week 3

Saturday Injury Updates and Impacts to Skill Position Matchups in Week 3:

  • LA Chargers: Austin Ekeler has been ruled OUT, which will give Joshua Kelley an opportunity in the ground game in Week 3 against Minnesota, which allowed Philly to run for 259 yards on the ground in Week 2.
  • GB Packers: Packers G Elgton Jenkins has been ruled OUT, while T David Bakhtiari (knee), CB Jaire Alexander, RB Aaron Jones and WR Christian Waston are all listed as questionable heading into a matchup with New Orleans’ elite defense that’s allowed opponents to score 20 points or less in its last 10 regular season games.
  • New Orleans Saints: Jamaal Williams is OUT, giving Kendre Miller an opportunity to make an instant impact in Week 3 against a suspect Green Bay rushing defense.
  • Detroit Lions: Detroit is banged up heading into their Week 3 matchup with Atlanta – T Taylor Decker, S Kerby Joseph, DB Emmanuel Mosley and G Halapoulivaati Vaitai are all OUT, while David Montgomery is doubtful and WR’s Amon-Ra St. Brown and Josh Reynolds are both questionable.
  • Baltimore Ravens: Baltimore is banged up across the board – WR Odell Beckham Jr., RB Justice Hill, CB Marlon Humphrey, S Marcus Williams, C Tyler Linderbaum, T Ronnie Stanley and OLB Odafe Oweh are all OUT.
  • Indianapolis Colts: Anthony Richardson and C Ryan Kelley are OUT, while CB’s Dallis Flowers and Kenny Moore are both questionable.

Head over to browse our Player Matchup Dashboards and explore everything we have to offer. In addition to standard passing, rushing and receiving yardage ranks by player and corresponding defensive ranks, our dashboards include QB rushing yards, explosive runs and receptions, red zone carries, catches and targets, and more. We are here to equip you with the data and matchup analysis you need to attack the board every week.

Best and Worst QB Matchups

QB Player Matchup Dashboard: Passing YPG

Best QB Matchups

  • Pat Mahomes: The Bears are a complete dumpster fire, entering this matchup with the Chiefs’ high-powered offense off a week in which their defensive coordinator resigned and Justin Fields publicly questioned coaching tactics. Mahomes bounced back in Week 2 against the Jags, throwing for 305 yards and 2 TD’s on 29-41 and completed passes to 11 different receivers. The Bears’ have issues across the board on defense – their secondary may not be their weakest unit, but the lack of pass rush (2 sacks through 2 games, 30th in league; 4 QB hits through 2 games, 32nd in league) leaves their corners out on an island. As a result , the Bears rank 31st in YPP allowed, 27th in passing YPG and 31st in YPA. Mahomes should have a field day throwing the ball and the Chiefs should rout the Bears with Kelce and Chris Jones both back on the field.
  • Kirk Cousins: Cousins threw for 364 yards and 4 TD’s in Week 2 on TNF in Philly – he didn’t necessarily sink the Vikings (they turned the ball over 4 times), though he did get strip sacked which led to Eagles points in the 2nd half. Regardless, the Vikings have passed the ball on 78% of their offensive plays in 2023; the most lopsided in rate in the league by a significant margin. They’ll be facing a Chargers’ defense and secondary that on paper is extremely talented but by the results through 2 weeks, looks lost. Cousins is 2nd in the league in passing YPG and 3rd in explosive passes (10+ yards), facing a Chargers secondary ranked 32nd in passing YPG allowed and 30th in explosive passes. Alexander Mattison brings zero juice in the run game, which means the Vikings are likely going to continue throwing the ball all over the field.
  • Justin Herbert: On the opposite side of this matchup, Justin Herbert also has a Vikings’ secondary that finished 2022 ranked 31st in passing YPG allowed and 32nd in explosive passes allowed. This secondary has yet to be exposed in 2023, as they faced Baker in Week 1 and the Eagles offense that decided to almost exclusively run the ball on their way to a win. Herbert opened things up in Week 2 against a similarly suspect Titans’ secondary, throwing for 305 yards and 2 TD’s in 27-41 passing but falling to 0-2. Keenan Allen and Mike Williams should both be in for big days in what looks on the surface to surely be a high scoring affair.

Worst QB Matchups:

  • Jordan Love: Jordan Love is facing a Saints’ defense that ranks 3rd in defensive efficiency, 5th in EPA/play, 6th in passing YPG allowed, 8th in sacks per game and 7th in QB hits per game. Love struggled down the stretch against Atlanta in Week 2, finishing 0-6 passing and leading the Packers to just 11 yards of offense and no first downs. The Saints meanwhile held Carolina to just 164 yards of total offense on 45 snaps (3.6 YPP) excluding the garbage-time 75-yard TD drive they posted with under 2 minutes to go.
  • Josh Allen: Allen has struggled against strong pass rushes since Brian Daboll departed last season, and he’s going to be facing the league’s top-ranked pass rush in Week 3 on the road in Washington. The Commanders sacked Russ 7 times last week – Allen has a tendency to get reckless when he exits the pocket and made some terrible decisions in Week 1 against the Jets. There looks to be some wet weather in store on Sunday in Washington – Allen’s ball security could be an issue on the ground.
  • Mac Jones: The Patriots lack speed on the offensive side of the ball at skill positions, which is going to be an issue against this Jets’ defense that ranks 5th in our defensive efficiency and 7th in YPP allowed. Jones ranks just 29th in the league in YPA and finished with just 4.3 YPA on SNF against Miami. New England is dealing with injuries on their OL, which should give the Jets’ pass rush an opportunity to pin their ears back and get after Jones.
  • Ryan Tannehill: Cleveland’s defense has been elite so far under Jim Schwartz, ranking 1st in early down success rate, 3rd down conversion rate and RZ trips allowed, 2nd in defensive efficiency, EPA/play and YPP allowed, and top 10 in nearly every other defensive metric we track. This defense held Joe Burrow to 82 yards passing in Week 1 and Kenny Pickett to a 50% completion rate in Week 2. DeAndre Hopkins was a limited participant in practice on Thursday and DNP on Friday, listed as questionable for tomorrow.

Best & Worst RB Matchups

RB Matchup Dashboard: Rushing YPG

Best RB Matchups

  • Kendre Miller (O/U 40.5 rushing yards, DKNG) will get his first start in New Orleans this weekend against a Green Bay defense that ranks 29th in rushing YPG allowed and 31st in rushes of 10+ yards that allowed Atlanta to run for 211 total yards (4.7 YPC) in Week 2. Taysom Hill rushed 9 times for 75 yards against Carolina – with Jamaal Williams out in Week 3 and Kamara still suspended, expect Hill to also get a number of touches via the power formation.  
  • Joshua Kelley (O/U 61.5 rushing yards, DKNG) is going to get the start on Sunday with Ekeler officially ruled out, giving Kelley an opportunity to break out against a Vikings defense that allowed Philly to run for 259 yards on the ground in Week 2. LAC’s run game was stifled against TEN’s top-5 run defense in Week 2, but they ran for 233 yards on the ground in Week 1 against Miami in a game where Kelley carried the ball 16 times for 91 yards (5.7 YPC) and 1 TD.
  • Kenneth Walker (O/U 67.5 rushing yards, FD) has a strong matchup against a Carolina run defense that ranks 25th in rushing YPG allowed and YPC and 28th in runs of 10+ yards. Atlanta and New Orleans both have had success against this defense, rushing for 130+ yards in Weeks 1 and 2. Walker has gotten two-thirds of Seattle’s carries through 2 weeks ranks 6th among RB’s in RZ carries through 2 weeks – he’ll have plenty of opportunities to rack up yardage and reach the end zone against this front 7.
  • With Cam Akers out of the mix, the Rams’ backfield belongs to Kyren Williams heading into Week 3 against a Bengals run defense that allowed the Browns to rush for 206 yards on the ground in Week 1 and the Ravens to rush for 178 yards in Week 2. Williams has rushed for 3 TD’s and caught 1 TD through 2 weeks.

Worst RB Matchups

  • Many rushed to grab Jerome Ford off the waiver wires this week following Nick Chubb’s gruesome knee injury against Pittsburgh, but Cleveland brought Kareem Hunt back into the building this week. Hunt and Ford will face a Tennessee run defense that is allowing just 67 yards per game and has allowed just 3 runs of 10+ yards – this isn’t an early season anomaly, as the Titans led the league in run defense in rushing YPG and YPC in 2022 and allowed just 36 rush of 10+ yards on the season, good for 3rd in the league.
  • On the opposite side of the ball in this game, Derrick Henry (O/U 71.5 rushing yards, FD) is dealing with turf toe and will be facing an upstart Cleveland run defense that ranks 5th in rushing YPG allowed and just 4 runs of 10+ yards, good for 8th in the league.
  • Rachaad White (O/U 49.5 rushing yards, FD) will face an uphill battle against Philly’s top-ranked run defense that is allowing just 52 rushing yards per game and has allowed just one run of 10+ yards through 2 weeks with Jordan Davis and Jalen Carter anchoring the middle of this defensive line. The Bucs are averaging just 3.2 YPC and have posted just 3 runs of 10+ yards, 30th in the league.

Best WR Matchups

  • Zay Flowers (O52.5 receiving yards, FD) will have his time to shine in Week 3 against a young, suspect Indy secondary that lost Stephon Gilmore, Rodney McLeod and Brandon Facyson and ranks 29th in passing YPG allowed and 27th in explosive passing plays (10+ yards) through 2 weeks. Odell Beckham is out, while Flowers caught 9 balls for 78 yards on 10 targets in Week 1 and 4 balls for 62 yards on 5 targets in Week 2. If Beckham can’t go, Lamar will be looking for Flowers through the air to exploit this poor secondary that allowed WR1 Calvin Ridley to catch 8 balls for 101 yards and a TD on 11 targets in Week 1 and Nico Collins to catch 7 balls for 146 yards and a TD on 9 targets in Week 2. There looks to be 50%-60% chance of rain on Sunday with winds in the 10mph range – not the most ideal conditions but good enough to pass the ball.
  • Bijan Robinson (O23.5 receiving yards, DKNG) was drafted 8th overall to be a focal part of Arthur Smith’s offense – he caught 6 balls for 27 yards and 1 TD in his NFL debut and only got more involved against GB in Week 2, catching 4 balls for 48 yards on 5 targets. Robinson is a dynamic playmaker in space – expect the Falcons to target him early and often and to get this offense rolling against a Lions’ defense that can still be exploited in 2023 and ranks 25th in passing YPG allowed, 26th in YPA and 27th in passes of 10+ yards.
  • Puka Nacua (O63.5 receiving yards, DKNG) caught 10 balls for 119 yards on 15 targets in Week 1 vs Seattle and 15 balls for 147 yards on a staggering 20 targets in Week 2 vs SF against a defense that didn’t allow a Giants receiver to go for more than 32 yards on TNF in Week 3. 35 targets through 2 weeks for a rookie is absurd and underlines the trust Stafford has in Nacua, who has reportedly joined Stafford’s and Kupp’s breakfast club where they watch film. There’s a bit of a void in the middle of Cincy’s pass defense early this season with the departures of Jesse Bates and Vonn Bell in the offseason, and with Kupp and Robert Woods out of the mix, there’s a significant vacuum for targets from Stafford that Nacua has filled immediately. Nacua leads the league in catches of 10+ yards with 13 through 2 weeks – maybe he regresses when Kupp eventually returns, but for now Stafford’s only options to throw to include Nacua, Atwell, Tyler Higbee and Van Jefferson.  

Head over to our Dashboard section of the site to comb through game matchup dashboards for every game on the board in Week 3, and browse our Player Matchup Analysis dashboards to optimize your DFS / FF lineups and target the player prop markets.

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