Who is going to be the hottest free agency pickup on the market this week? Yeah, the guy to my right, Torrey Smith, the Baltimore Ravens rookie wide receiver taking the place of Lee Evans for the week. This is shocking because not only did he tie Wes Welker for the top receiver position of this past weekend, but they both led all other fantasy players in points for their owners. Surprise? Yeah, a bit.
Another wideout makes the list this week in New York, Victor Cruz replacing Mario Manningham. Those two make the shock factor surreal.
As I only do Quarterbacks, running backs, and wide receivers on this list, I want to make a special shout-out to two players. One of my all-time favorites, Green Bay Packers tight end Jermichael Finley, grabbing 85 yards and 3 touchdowns from Aaron Rodgers (26 points) and… yes, the Dallas Cowboys kicker Dan Bailey for scoring 6-for-6 on field goals last night, netting him 21 fantasy points.
Without further ado, I present week 3’s top players:
- Joe Flacco – Do you remember when I said that I was Wacco for Flacco? When the Ravens receivers have a big game, it’s because of their quarterback throwing them the football. This makes two out of three weeks of 20+ point performances, gaining 27 this weekend throwing for 389 yards and 3 touchdowns. Forget the 2 fumbles and move on.
- Drew Brees – The heck with Flacco, Brees is the number 2 overall QB this year, with every game landing you 22+ points. This past weekend’s 26 came from another 3rd straight week of 3 touchdowns from 370 yards. He also threw his first 2 interceptions of the year, which would have given him 30 points for the game. C’est Le Vie! He’s thrown for over 1,000 yards already this season, and has a weak Jacksonville Jaguars to feast upon next week. It doesn’t seem to matter who his receivers are, he will find them.
- Eli Manning & Mark Sanchez – With his brother Peyton Manning out of the picture this year, little Eli is the talk of the family. He had a great game against the rival Philadelphia Eagles, completing 4 touchdowns with 254 yards and no turnovers, netting 26 fantasy points. Watching the Oakland Raider fans pour into the coliseum on Sunday I just knew the New York Jets were going to dominate this game. Boy, was I wrong. But playing from behind makes a team pass the ball more, and Sanchez ended with 369 yards, 2 touchdowns and an interception for 26 total points.
- Matt Schaub – Finally making this list, after making my top 5 QB list, Schaub connected on 3 touchdowns with 1 pick across 373 yards in the Louisiana Superdome playing against my New Orleans Saints. He makes the last spot on this list with 24 fantasy points.
- Darren McFadden – There he goes, justifying my 2nd round picks on drafting him. Finally RunDMC tops the NFL charts for running backs! He ran all over the Jets this weekend, 171 yards and 2 touchdowns worth. Will he remain healthy enough to keep his top status throughout the year? We’ll have to wait and see, but I’m very skeptical. The guy hasn’t been healthy since college. However, 29 fantasy points makes his owners happy for now.
- Ryan Matthews – He hasn’t hit 100 yards in a game yet this season, but 98 yards and 2 touchdowns will have to do, giving this Chargers player 26 fantasy points against the rival Chiefs.
- Fred Jackson – He’s the #3 overall running back in the league, but I for some reason still don’t want to believe in him. The Buffalo Bills are undefeated, but there’s a CJ Spiller right behind him. Plus, Jackson only had 12 rushes this weekend, for 74 yards and 1 touchdown. However he gained loads of value through the air in the passing game.
- LaDainian Tomlinson – Who? Didn’t LT retire? Ho ho, not yet! He only had 6 rushes for 38 yards in the game versus the Raiders, but he found lots of space in the air, catching 5 passes for 116 yards and 1 touchdown. I’m sure this guy nabbed you loads of points on the bench this weekend.
- Ahmad Bradshaw & LeSean McCoy – Rounding out the week on the ground is Bradshaw rushing 15 times for 86 yards (19 fantasy points, 53 yards and 1 touchdown receiving) and McCoy dropping to the #2 spot, rushing 24 times for 128 yards and a touchdown. Their teams played each other this past weekend.
- Torrey Smith & Wes Welker – I want to mention the rookie first, because I generally dislike the New England Patriots and I’m still laughing at their loss to the Buffalo Bills. Smith
- Victor Cruz – 3 receptions for 2 touchdowns? That sounds like a fantastic average, especially when 110 yards are attached to it. Cruz is obviously 3rd on the Giants depth chart, but he’s worth a pickup if Manningham or Hakeem Nicks are banged up again.
- Calvin Johnson – Megatron helps the Detroit Lions remain tied for the top at 3-0, with 108 yards and 2 touchdowns from his quarterback. He’s the #2 overall receiver in the NFL right now.
- Mike Wallace – The Steelers need a lot of help if they want to stay in competition with their rival Ravens’ success. Having a #3 overall receiver helps a ton, as Wallace caught a touchdown and marked 144 yards against the Colts.