It's funny, even though we're near unanimous in the fantasy community about waiting on a quarterback, and that you should play the matchups, my Twitter timeline tells me you're still a little worried about taking that leap of faith and streaming a good QB with a bad matchup. But, I'm here to tell you right now. You, who is starting that big-name quarterback with a tough matchup this week. you have to bench him.
Yep, that's right. Make sure you bench Sam Bradford this week against the Chicago Bears! I'm sorry, folks. That's your Fantasy PSA of the week.
Oh yeah, there's another one. Philip Rivers. Bench him this week. That's right, I'm not pussyfooting around this and saying, "well if you have better options you should …" pfft. Bench that guy. I love him. He's kin. He's going to be in the Hall of Fame. He's also going to be on my bench in Week 3.
The Rams have allowed 3.91 fantasy points per game to quarterbacks this season. That's the fewest in the NFL. They are also the only team in the league that hasn't allowed a touchdown pass in two games this season. I'm not saying Riv isn't going to get a few checkdowns to Melvin Gordon who somehow, against all science, takes it to the house. But, I'm not going to bank on that when there are a plethora of other options available to you out there.
Here are some quarterbacks I'd start over Rivers:
Andy Dalton, QB, Cincinnati Bengals
Dalton absolutely lit up the Ravens in the first half. I don't want to get swept away in recency bias because he really was impressive. But I do like the matchup against the Panthers who have allowed a lot of fantasy points to quarterbacks. He's among the league leaders with six touchdown passes so far this season. He's among the leaders in passes dropped with five. (Those are probably all John Ross' fault). I kid. I do like Dalton this week.
Ryan Tannehill, QB, Miami Dolphins
He's thrown at least two touchdown passes in both games this season and I really like the matchup against the Raiders. He is among the top 10 with more than 60 percent of his passes coming short of the sticks, but he's still moving the offense with consistency. I've really been impressed by his ability to scramble out of the pocket. He can extend the play, but run when necessary. This will be a fun matchup.
Blake Bortles, QB, Jacksonville Jaguars
Bortles is currently the fifth-highest graded quarterback by Pro Football Focus. And, we're in a new era where this is the norm. Bortles has been a new guy since last year's playoffs. He's played so well recently, I'm hoping Mitch Trubisky can follow Blake's career path. Right down to being lampooned on a popular NBC sitcom.
All right, how about some sleepers at running back, receiver, and tight end:
Corey Clement, RB, Philadelphia Eagles
He was a standout in the preseason and could get an increased role again this week with Jay Ajayi (back) and Darren Sproles (hamstring) both ailing. Last week, Clement scored 14.40 fantasy points last week thanks to a career-high five receptions. The Colts are very vulnerable to running backs who can catch as the Bengals RB1 (five receptions) and Washington's Chris Thompson (13 receptions) were able to have success against the Colts through the air.
Corey Grant, RB, Jacksonville Jaguars
I'm super-excited I have all these shares of Leonard Fournette and have to add T.J. Yeldon and Grant all over the place. As noted by our own Graham Barfield in his deep dives, Grant forced a near timeshare last week. He ran 22 routes that he turned into six receptions and 56 yards. He played 42 percent of the snaps, but he could see that rise if Fournette and Yeldon are limited or out.
Ito Smith, RB, Atlanta Falcons
He was a player I added all over the place when Devonta Freeman went down with an injury. He played in 30 percent of the snaps and ended up with 54 total yards. I also love the matchup this week against the Saints. The two heated rivals played some low-scoring games last year, but I'm looking for a more robust outburst by the teams this week. Of course, this could all be negated if Freeman (knee) returns -- which seems unlikely.
Tyler Boyd, WR, Cincinnati Bengals
We've all rooted for John Ross to become a thing. Much like we've wanted Rusev Day to become an actual thing. I mean, even though the crowds have begged the WWE for him to get over, they are like, "nah, we're going to have him go out there and feud with Aiden English." Whoopie. I swear, there were times when I would watch indie wrestlers and wonder what they would do in the WWE. Now I'm left wondering what Rusev would do if he was allowed to go to New Japan or ROH. But back to Boyd, he's out-snapping and out-catching Ross and clearly is the No. 2 receiver ahead of his Week 3 draw against the Bengals.
James Washington, WR, Pittsburgh Steelers
I have a good friend, we call him Disco Dave, he's an ace producer but probably best known for finding the best Vietnamese places in every town we're dropped in to. I mean, he found this place in a strip mall just outside our hotel in Minnesota that was some of the best food I've ever had. (Check my Yelp page.) But, the Steelers are the same way with receivers. They seemingly never miss on one. Washington is the latest. He tossed Justin Hunter aside and he's the new wideout and has pushed JuJu into the slot position, which is the best for everyone around. He played in more than 80 percent of the snaps last week and if he does that against this Bucs D, look out. The Bucs have allowed 197.5 receiving yards per game to receivers this year.
Danny Amendola, WR, Miami Dolphins
I checked out PFF's WR vs. CB ratings and looked for the guys who held the greatest advantage. You saw the names you figured you would see. Antonio Brown. A.J. Green. DeAndre Hopkins. Danny Amendola. Stefon Diggs. Wait, hold up. What was that second-to-last one again? PFF listed Amendola's matchup against Leon Hall as one of the best for the weekend. Trust me, I was blindsided worse than Brett from last week's Big Brother, too. But hey, this is the world we're living in. With four catches in each game so far, Amendola is worth a PPR dart in Week 3.
Mark Andrews, TE, Baltimore Ravens
Speaking of great advantages, PFF lists Andrews as having the second-most advantageous matchup this week, going up against the BroncosWill Parks. The tight end position isn't great, folks. If I'm really reaching, then this is one guy I would be willing to take a chance on. Plus, Flacco. Tight ends. Hello! (That sound you hear is Graham Barfield's soul slowly being crushed. One of the brightest minds in the fantasy community is now cursed with having to sort through my wrestling, Big Brother and other inane references. Forgive me. Now you know how I felt when I watched Brian Danielson job out in NXT and be besmirched by The Miz and Matt Striker. At least Tyler Black got to join the Shield.)
Dallas Cowboys DST
The Cowboys are second in the NFL with nine sacks. Russell Wilson leads the NFL with 12 sacks. So right there, it seems like a pretty good matchup. And it is. But they are outside of the top ten in both quarterback hits (6) and hurries (26). And that's nit-picking for sure, because they are 12th when you combine total pressures, hurries, sacks and hits. Dallas is a fine Week 3 streaming option.