In today’s Fantasy Life Newsletter we drop early Week 3 ranks, objectively review Rondale Moore’s big game, and dive into some stats. It's 9/22. Take it away, Peter Overzet…
Wednesdays are a big day around here. We got early Week 3 ranks by Waz fresh out of the oven, the biggest signals and noise trends from Ben Gretch, an injury roundup, and some stat-heavy pieces of content. Let’s get to it...
💥 SIGNALS & NOISE
Ben Gretch (@YardsPerGretch) writes the terrific Stealing Signals newsletter where he does a weekly deep dive into the previous week and shares his biggest signals (players who could sustain their production) and biggest noise (performances that were likely fluky). Here are some of his observations from Week 2…
* Saquon Barkley — 84% snap share, 71% routes on short week
* Elijah Mitchell — clear lead back with 61% snaps, but ran fewer routes than the now-injured JaMycal Hasty and Mitchell also got his green zone touch after Hasty played in that area first for the second straight week (Mitchell’s High Value Touch (HVT) upside is still in question)
* Michael Carter — 88 yards on 13 touches, gained 20 percentage points of snap share over Week 1, 4 HVTs (2 receptions on 38% routes, 2 green zone touches)
* Quintez Cephus — 90% routes, seven targets, solid college production, worth an add to see what happens in open receiving room
* George Kittle — 4 targets (ran routes on 88% of dropbacks, way up from Week 1, and his TPRR—Targets Per Route Run—is typically very strong)
* Zack Moss — led green zone touches 3 to 1, but Devin Singletary got one in the first quarter, all three of Moss’s and both of his touchdowns came in the fourth with the game decided, so nothing is clear here
* Rondale Moore — Week 2 routes gains
* Tony Pollard — 16 touches on 21 snaps (Week 2 was a positive sign, and they manufacture him touches, but he ran just seven routes and needs more snaps overall, which may not happen given Zeke’s pass blocking)
To see all of Gretch’s biggest signals and biggest noise analysis from Week 2, subscribe to his substack.
🥇WAZ'S .5 PPR RANKS
Here are the early Week 3 rankings from Rob Waziak aka "Waz" along with a note before Thursday Night Football:
With Tyrod Taylor and Nico Collins sent to injured reserve, and Danny Amendola expected to miss at least two weeks, the Texans are struggling to stay afloat in the pass-catching department. Brandin Cooks’ (WR35) target share should continue to be dominant, but I wouldn’t consider picking up or starting either Chris Conley (WR91) or Andre Roberts (WR112), even if you’re desperate. Now, I do expect David Johnson (RB48) and Phillip Lindsay (RB 50) to see a slight uptick in usage, but as 8-point underdogs with an implied point total of 17.5, they won’t be catalysts in winning your Week 3 matchup.
Waz is a fantasy football analyst who competes in draft and season-long expert rankings competitions. He's consistently been at or near the top of all industry-wide leaderboards since 2017. He’ll be back on Saturday with an update.
🚑 THE INJURY WARD
* The Browns placed Jarvis Landry (sprained MCL) on IR which means he will miss at least 3 weeks, but Odell Beckham (knee) hinted on a few social media posts that he will make his debut Week 3 against the Bears.
* Big Ben is dealing with a left pectoral injury. He’ll likely miss practice time this week, so we’ll keep you posted.
* Andy Dalton is considered “week-to-week” with his knee injury. Justin Fields should make his first career start on Sunday.
🔢 WEDNESDAYS ARE FOR THE STATS
* Unexpected Observations from Week 2 by Justin Freeman. “Melvin Gordon III (59% snaps) continues to play ahead of Javonte Williams (41% snaps) and be more involved in the passing game (61% routes run vs 26%).” Get access to the full article on Footballguys with a Rotopass subscription.
* Waiver Adds, Buy Lows & Usage Trends - Week 3 Stat Chasing. Sam Hoppen uses charts and data viz to analyze all of the most interesting player usage and emerging trends from Week 2, including Derrick Henry’s big week, the Bengals WRs, and Henry Ruggs’ breakout performance.
* Strength In Numbers: Actionable Week 2 Stats by Jack Miller. “In 2020, Mike Williams never had a week with an average depth of target below 10. His lowest-aDOT game came in Week 15 at exactly 10.0. This year, he posted a 10.0 aDOT in Week 1 and a 9.7 aDOT in Week 2. He leads the Chargers with 22 targets (25% share) through two games.”
- Pete Overzet