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June 18, 2008

Fantasy Football Week 3 QB Rankings


1. Jay Cutler (DEN) – He is the hottest fantasy QB out there right now throwing for 650 yards, 6 TD’s, and only 1 interception in his first 2 games. Cutler should continue to sizzle in week 3 against a shaky New Orleans pass defense that has given up an average of 256 yards passing in their first 2 games against average QB’s (Garcia and Campbell).

2. Tony Romo (DAL) – He is coming off of a strong week 2 performance against the Eagles, a team he had previously struggled against at home. Romo did make a couple of critical errors, but from a fantasy standpoint, it was a nice game for him. Romo will face the Packers in week 3. The Packers have given up more yards through the air than they would like to this point, but they also have more interceptions (4) than TD’s allowed through the air (3). If Romo can limit his mistakes, he should have another big game. Last season Romo threw for 309 yards, 4 TD’s and 1 interception against Green Bay.

3. Peyton Manning (IND) – While Manning has shown flashes of the greatness we are all accustomed to in his first two contests, he has also had his fair share of shaky moments. This is probably due to a battered offensive line and the lack of a quality running game against two run stopping defenses (Bears and Vikings). In week 3, Manning will face rival foe Jacksonville at home. Manning has had pretty good results against the Jags in recent years and threw for 288 yards and 4 TD’s against them at home last season. He might continue to have a rough patch here and there, but Manning is still more than worthy of a starting spot on your week 3 fantasy roster.

4. Aaron Rodgers (GB) – As expected, Rodgers torched the Lions in week 2 for 328 yards, 3 TD’s, and no interceptions. Week 3 should prove to be Rodgers biggest test of the young season when he faces the Cowboys at home. Rodgers completed 18 of 26 passes for 201 yards, 1 TD and no interceptions in mop up duty for the injured Brett Favre last season against Dallas. He also added 30 rushing yards, and looked solid in his only significant action of the ’07 season. While the Cowboys defense seems like a scary match up for the first year starter, we think Rodgers will continue his stellar play. The Cowboys pass defense has been more bark than bite so far this season, and Donovan McNabb made them look flat out bad at times on Monday night.

5. Drew Brees (NO) – The absence of go to WR Marques Colston clearly had an effect on Brees in week 2, but his performance was not as bad as it looks on paper. The 2 interceptions he threw came off of tipped balls, and he still managed 216 yards and a TD against a Redskins pass defense that looks to be better than expected. He will face Denver in week 3, and while the Broncos offense is ripping it up, their pass defense has been miserable. The Denver D has allowed an average of 267 yards passing in their first 2 games (Oakland and San Diego). They have also allowed 5 passing TD’s (tied for 2nd most in the NFL behind St. Louis with 6). In addition they have only managed 1 interception. We expect this game to turn into an air show and both QB’s should benefit. Brees is still a must start.

6. Kurt Warner (ARI) – He was near flawless in week 2 against Miami, completing 19 of 24 passes for 361 yards, 4 TD’s, and 0 interceptions. It will be tougher for him against an improved Redskins pass defense in week 3, but Warner tends to be streaky, and you have to stick with him while he is hot. Warner threw for 282 yards, 2 TD’s and 2 interceptions against Washington last season. Don’t expect a repeat of last week, but Warner should come through with another strong effort.

7. Eli Manning (NYG) – He continued his impressive play in week 2 with a 3 TD performance, even if it was against the Rams, who appear to have the worst defense in the NFL. If he can continue to show the same kind of consistency that led him to a Super Bowl victory last season, Manning will provide fantasy owners with great results, but the jury is still out until he is truly tested. Manning will face the Bengals in week 3, and while the Cincinnati pass defense looks great on paper to this point, their impressive numbers came against Baltimore rookie Joe Flacco and Titans back up Kerry Collins in 60 mile per hour winds. Manning should easily expose the Bengals pass defense for what they really are, bad.

8. Ben Roethlisberger (PIT) – He only threw for 186 yards and 1 TD in week 2, but when you take into account the ridiculous weather conditions and his sore shoulder, those numbers are actually pretty good. He will continue to battle through what is believed to be a sprained shoulder when Pittsburgh travels to Philadelphia in week 3, but Roethlisberger didn’t seem to be limited by the shoulder to any large degree against the Browns. He has looked very good to this point, and should have success against an Eagles pass defense that got torched by Dallas on Monday night. Check injury report: shoulder (full practice on Thursday)

9. Phillip Rivers (SD) – We have never thought much of Rivers as a fantasy QB, but it is hard to argue with his production so far this season. He has thrown for close to 600 yards and 6 TD’s in his first 2 games, while only throwing 1 interception. It is too early in the season to say that this guy has transcended into the fantasy elite, but so far so good. Rivers has a nice week 3 match up against the Jets. The Jets have been fairly solid in defending the pass thus far, but they have not exactly faced an offense of this caliber. Expect Rivers to tone it down a bit this week, but he should still produce on a more than acceptable level. You just have to hope that he doesn’t fall back into his old ways.

10. Donovan McNabb (PHI) – He has looked like the McNabb of old in his first 2 games, ducking and diving out of tackles, and making big plays. McNabb put up strong fantasy numbers for the second straight week, and they would have been even better if not for the already infamous DeSean Jackson debacle. McNabb will be tested against a very stout Pittsburgh pass defense in week 3, but he looks to be on track, and he finally has a weapon other than Brian Westbrook to work with.

11. Brett Favre (NYJ) – He followed up a solid week 1 performance with a sub par week 2, and after Kurt Warner torched the Miami defense in week 2, Favre’s week 1 totals against Miami seem less impressive. Favre still has the tools and the weapons to be a very effective fantasy QB as a Jet, but this offense is still new to him, and it will take some time. We like his chances to get the ball rolling in week 3 against a Charger pass defense that has allowed close to 600 yards passing and 5 TD’s in their first 2 games. The San Diego defense is probably better than their stats might indicate, but Favre is capable of exposing them again. As a Packer, Favre threw for 369 yards, 3 TD’s and no interceptions against San Diego last season.

12. J.T. O’Sullivan (SF) – O’Sullivan has had mixed results in his first 2 NFL starts, but last week’s performance on the road was promising. He threw for 321 yards, ran for 32 yards, threw a TD pass, and had 0 interceptions against a tough Seattle defense, in arguably the most difficult stadium to play in as a visiting signal caller. We still don’t have much to go on when evaluating his fantasy value, but last week’s effort bodes well. O’Sullivan’s week 3 could be even better as he will face a very suspect Detroit secondary. He may prove to be one of the more productive fantasy QB’s this week.

13. Matt Cassel (NE) – While Cassel was less than impressive against the Jets in week 2, you must keep in mind that it was his first start since high school, and the game plan was very conservative. The good news is that he was not awful, and he managed the game pretty well. We expect Head Coach Bill Belichick will open up the passing game more in week 2, and Cassel could be in for a nice fantasy day against a horrible Miami pass defense. The Dolphins have been torched in each of their first 2 games, and if Cassel gets comfy, it could be 3. Cassel is miles away from putting up Tom Brady type numbers, but this match up bodes well, and could give him the confidence to become a solid week to week fantasy option. We shall see.

14. Jake Delhomme (CAR) – In spite of a poor week 2 fantasy outing against the Bears, Delhomme is not a bad week 3 starting option. He has 2 very important factors in his favor. For one, the return of his stud go to WR Steve Smith from suspension could make all the difference in the world for him, and second, the match up against a mediocre Vikings pass defense should prove to be easier to navigate against than that of the Bears. Delhomme must show drastic improvement in week 3 to be considered as a solid week to week starting fantasy QB, but with a full compliment of weapons at his disposal, and an emerging Panthers running game to help him out; the future appears bright.

15. Matt Hasselbeck (SEA) – Hasselbeck has not been himself in the first 2 weeks, but considering his WR’s continue to drop like flies, it is difficult to expect much from him. The good news is that Seattle signed WR Koren Robinson and traded for Denver WR Keary Colbert this week. It is not a huge upgrade, but it should help. Besides, Hasselbeck is playing the Rams this week, and as bad as the St. Louis defense has played thus far, he could probably throw the ball to himself and have a 200 yard plus game with a couple of TD’s . The Rams have allowed an NFL worst 655 passing yards and 6 TD’s in their first 2 games, and they have yet to intercept a single pass. Hasselbeck is still risky under the circumstances, but this match up might be too promising to pass up.

16. Jon Kitna (DET) – In week 2, he looked like the typical Jon Kitna that fantasy owners have grown accustomed to over the last few seasons. He strolled into the 4th quarter with what looked to be a nice fantasy stat line, but as the pressure mounted, Kitna choked once again by throwing 3 critical interceptions. While he still has decent value as a fantasy QB, you can always expect him to ruin an otherwise great game by throwing the ball to the wrong team. He has a so so week 3 match up against San Francisco, but Kitna is not an optimal starting option.

17. Matt Schaub (HOU) – Schaub still has top flight fantasy QB potential, but he must step up to be considered as such. He showed flashes of how great he can be in week 1 against the Steelers, but he also had some rough patches in that game, and continues to make poor decisions under pressure. He will likely see plenty of pressure in week 3 against the Titans. Schaub started both games against Tennessee last season, and while we would love to share his stats from those games, there just isn’t enough there to be of any help, as he was knocked out (literally) early by the Titans defense in both contests. The odds are probably in his favor to finish this one out, but it is never a lock with the fragile signal caller. If he does in fact make it through the full game, Schaub is capable of decent numbers, but he is a risky start against a very good defense.

18. Derek Anderson (CLE) – Even with difficult match ups, crazy weather conditions (week 2), and Braylon Edwards dropping half of the passes thrown to him, Anderson has to be considered a fantasy disappointment so far this season. Unfortunately, week 3 at Baltimore doesn’t hold a great deal of promise either. On a positive note, Anderson wasn’t bad in 2 games against the Ravens last season, throwing for over 200 yards in both games and accounting for 3 total TD’s (1 rushing). We expect Anderson to rebound nicely when the match ups ease up and he gets his full compliment of weapons back (Stallworth and Jurevivicius), but until then, you might want to keep him reserved.

19. David Garrard (JAX) – He has yet to conjure up the magic that made him one of the top, up and coming fantasy QB’s heading into this season. In his first 2 games, Garrard has already equaled the number of interceptions he threw all of last season (3). He will face Indianapolis in week 3. Garrard was solid in his only full game against the Colts last season (24-29, 257 yds., 2 TD’s and 1 int.), but he was a much different QB at that time. With an injury plagued offensive line, Garrard will have a tough time finding the end zone against a Colts defense that has yet to allow a passing TD this season. There is till hope for him, but he will have to produce this week for you to strongly consider him as your starting fantasy QB.

20. Jason Campbell (WAS) – After a bland week 1 performance that brought about questions in his ability to run Washington’s newly installed west coast offense, Campbell answered his critics with a solid week 2, throwing for 321 yards and a score. Despite the rebound, we still view Campbell as a shaky week to week fantasy starter. He had some great performances last season as well, but typically followed them up with bad ones. One of those poor performances last season came against week 3 opponent Arizona in which Campbell only threw for 95 yards and an interception. He should be much better in this year’s contest against the Cardinals, but do not expect him to light it up by any means. As a side note, Arizona’s defense has yet to allow a passing TD in their first 2 games this season.

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