Another NFL Sunday is in the books. We still have one game left this week, but it probably won’t provide a lot of miracle options for those in need when it comes to fantasy. More on that in a minute. First, it’s time to look back and assess what we learned from Sunday’s games.
The Dolphins are a force to be reckoned with
The Dolphins are the AFC’s only undefeated team after three weeks. This has to be both exciting and nerve-wracking for the 1972 Dolphins. Just kidding, there’s a long way to go. Still, the Dolphins beat the Patriots, the Ravens and the Bills in consecutive weeks to move to 3-0. Tua Tagovailoa and the pass offense is going well and the team has had enough tenacity to take the best punch available from the Ravens and Bills and come away with wins. For a team that’s been agonizingly close to making the playoffs but fallen short in recent years, this could be a positive development. It’s a credit to the roster that’s been constructed but also to first-year Head Coach Mike McDaniel who’s looked like anything but a rookie.
The AFC South might be better than we thought
Rumors of the Colts’ and Titans’ demise have apparently been exaggerated. Both teams came in winless against AFC West foes, and both earned crucial wins. The Colts withstood the Chiefs and Patrick Mahomes at home to move to 1-1-1 through three weeks. The Titans beat the Las Vegas Raiders, moving to 1-2 on the season. And, surprisingly, the division is being led by the 2-1 Jacksonville Jaguars. The Jaguars have had the No. 1 overall pick two years in a row and apparently it’s working. After blanking the Colts in Week 2, the Jaguars traveled to Los Angeles and blew out the Chargers, 38-10. In short, the division had a great week and looked much better than expected.
The AFC West might be weaker than we thought
Prior to the season, it was trendy to see the AFC West as the best division in football. Many, including myself, picked three or four teams to make the playoffs. While it might all shake out that way, through two weeks it’s been a bit different than expected. The Chiefs are 2-1 but lost a curious game to the winless Colts. Meanwhile the Chargers, a trendy pick to win the West and possibly make the Super Bowl, are 1-2, having been blown out by the Jaguars on Sunday. The Raiders have been frisky at times but are a woeful 0-3 and the Broncos seem to just be happy if they can get the snap off on offense without a penalty… In fact, two of the division’s four wins have come against each other, which is also a somewhat worrying sign. In addition, the AFC West is just 1-3 against the AFC South. Again, it’s early, but these are some worrying early signs.
With that, it’s on to the Monday Night Preview.
Dallas Cowboys (1-1) at New York Giants (2-0)
The biggest surprise here is that the Giants started 2-0. The team beat the Titans on opening day and came back with another win over the Panthers in Week 2. Now, they face their division rivals, the Dallas Cowboys. Dallas, meanwhile, started limply against the Buccaneers in Week 1, losing Dak Prescott in the process. Enter Cooper Rush, who guided the team to a win over the Bengals in Week 2. Now, with a win, the Cowboys will be over .500 and back in the thick of a surprisingly competitive division race.
But can Rush win a second straight game? Or can Daniel Jones move to 3-0 for the first time in his career. Better yet, what are the fantasy implications here?
Let’s be honest, hopefully you didn’t wait and risk too much of your fantasy week on this game. We’ll start with the home team Giants. I’m confidently playing running back Saquon Barkley, who has been on fire to start the team. Aside from that, it’s a tossup. If you’re looking for a dart throw, Ritchie James has seemed to find a groove as a receiver.
On the Cowboys’ side, it’s possible Michael Gallup plays, but he’s not in my lineup. It’s less likely that Dalton Schultz can play, so I hope you made other plans at tight end. Ezekiel Elliott is an RB2 for me as is Tony Pollard, who might have more of a role with Schultz on the pine. Of course, you’re also playing CeeDee Lamb, who’s more of a WR2 with Rush.
The Pick: Cowboys
Matthew Fox is a graduate of the Radio, Television and Film program at Biola University, and a giant nerd. He spends his free time watching movies, TV, and obsessing about football. He is a member of the FSWA. You can find him @knighthawk7734 on Twitter and as co-host of the Fantasy Football Roundtable Podcast.