By: Nate Leer
Week 3 of the preseason is also the busiest fantasy football draft timeframe as well. However, waiting with drafts until after all teams have played and we have had a chance to process the developments can lead to making better picks early and late. This year, studs such as Gronk and AJ Green confirmed their status just by playing and deep sleepers such as Seattle’s Chris Carson and Tennessee’s Taywan Taylor provided more evidence that they are worth keeping an eye once the season starts.
Here’s my top 3 risers and fallers along with some honorable mentions from preseason week 3:
1. Chris Hogan – WR – NE: I think Hogan benefits the most from fellow WR Julian Edelman’s knee injury. Hogan could be a bigger, faster version of Edelman so his upside is excellent. There is risk though as roles are not clearly defined after Edelman’s injury.
2. Jay Ajayi – RB – Mia: Ajayi looked like a beast again in week 3. He leapfrogs everyone on the RB rankings after the top 2 including Ezekiel Elliott because it looks like only an injury could keep Ajayi from being an elite producer this year.
3. Kareem Hunt – RB – KC: Hunt is another RB who has jumped up my rankings and he’s similar to Hogan as the main beneficiary of a tough injury to a teammate. To me, Hunt is the best bet out of the rookie RBs and that is a talented group. Hunt is poised to be great!.
Others: Cam Newton – QB – Car, Chris Carson – RB – Sea.
1. Jets O: Not that it should be shocking, but this is a bad team. They may be a bit more respectable with QB Josh McCown and newly acquired WR Tyler Lockett but the O line and skill players besides RBs Matt Forte and Bilal Powell are raged. Avoid these guys in your draft. Even Powell is limited for production as long as Forte is playing.
2. Matt Ryan – QB – Atl: Ryan didn’t look sharp. It’s hard to believe he will replicate last year’s efficiency and his week 3 performance did nothing to confirm his status as a truly elite QB, for fantasy or the NFL. He may be the most over drafted player this year.
3. Stefon Diggs – WR – Min: Diggs dropped 2 balls from QB Sam Bradford and that could hurt him in pursuit of limited opportunities in the Vikings aerial assault. I like Diggs’s upside as the most talented pass catcher in Minnesota. However, if he’s not reliable, risk averse QB Sam Bradford will look more to his favorite targets from last year, WR Adam Thielen and TE Kyle Rudolph.
Others: Spencer Ware – RB – KC (out for season), Julian Edelman – WR – NEout for season), Kirk Cousins – QB – Was.