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The IDP Guys’ NFL Week 3 Start/Sit List: Offense

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Find success in Week 3 with these start/sit decisions for the offensive side of the ball!

The second week of NFL action was all over the place. More unfortunate injuries plagued the week 2 slate: Jarvis Landry, Tua Tagovailoa, Tyrod Taylor, and the 49ers’ RBs amongst others. Some players were able to bounce back from down week 1 performances like Mike Evans, Julio Jones, Courtland Sutton, and Aaron Rodgers. While some fell back down to earth after big week 1 performances such as Antonio Brown, Melvin Gordon, and Corey Davis.

There were also a few players who left fantasy GMs wanting more such as Antonio Gibson, Joe Mixon, and A.J. Brown. We loved to see the studly performances from Derrick Henry and Aaron Jones but hated to see the mega-dud performances from Alvin Kamara and Clyde Edwards-Helaire.

Week 3 is here whether we are ready for it or not. Below are some helpful weekly reminders for what to consider for lineup optimization!

Weekly Start/Sit Decision Reminders

Be sure to always be mindful of weekly injury reports and gameday inactive announcements as this could pivot a weak starter into a strong starter! For this week especially; keep an eye on Rams RB Darrell Henderson‘s availability as he suffered a rib injury during his week 2 matchup, if he is unlikely to play RB Sony Michel gets a big boost!

Always have a backup plan in mind for the mid-afternoon, Sunday, and Monday night game players who hold the questionable tag throughout the week!

Be sure to always leave the FLEX spot(s) free of Thursday night players! Now let’s review the start/sit system that will be used in this article series all season long!

The “Trust, If You Must, and Bust” System:

Trust” = Strong start, a player who should be started in all formats!

If You Must” = Weak start, a player who is good enough to be a starter, but faces a tough matchup or holds an unclear opportunity in a good offense. Some caution should be used while the risk is recognized, as this is often league format dependent.

If you play in a shallow league, I would lean towards benching this player if you have a decent replacement option. In a deep league, I would lean towards starting, since the options may be more scarce. Either way, expectations should be managed.

Bust” = Keep on your bench, at least for now. These players should be avoided since stronger options at the relative position should be considered first. These are players who fit into one of the following categories:

  1. A player in a tough matchup or currently holds ambiguous weekly opportunities in the offense.
  2. A strong bench stash for season-long purposes but currently in a “wait and see” period. Wait and see if their role expands for starter caliber consideration. For example, this type of player may be a strong backup RB behind a stud in an elite offense or could be in line for a big workload if the starter misses time.
  3. Currently lacking a clear offensive opportunity in either a projected good or bad offense
  4. Is too volatile on a week-to-week basis. There is no need to play boom or bust type players if you can help it.

Week 3 Slate:

Thursday Night Football

Carolina Panthers at Houston Texans

Trust – RB Christian McCaffrey, WR D.J. Moore, WR Robby Anderson

If You Must – QB Sam Darnold

Bust – WR Terrace Marshall

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Trust – WR Brandin Cooks

Bust – RB David Johnson, RB Phillip Lindsay, RB Mark Ingram, QB Davis Mills


Sunday Early Afternoon Slate

Washington Football Team at Buffalo Bills
Football Team

Trust – RB Antonio Gibson, WR Terry McLaurin, TE Logan Thomas

If You Must – QB Taylor Heinicke, RB J.D. McKissic

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Trust – QB Josh Allen, WR Stefon Diggs

If You Must – RB Devin Singletary, WR Cole Beasley, WR Emmanuel Sanders

Bust – TE Dawson Knox, RB Zack Moss, WR Gabriel Davis


Chicago Bears at Cleveland Browns

Trust – RB David Montgomery, WR Allen Robinson

If You Must – QB Justin Fields, WR Darnell Mooney

Bust – TE Cole Kmet

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Trust – RB Nick Chubb, RB Kareem Hunt

If You Must – QB Baker Mayfield, TE Austin Hooper, WR Odell Beckham Jr.

Bust – WR Rashard Higgins, WR Donovan Peoples-Jones, TE Harrison Bryant


Baltimore Ravens at Detroit Lions

Trust – QB Lamar Jackson, RB Ty’Son Williams, TE Mark Andrews, WR Marquise Brown

If You Must – WR Sammy Watkins, RB Latavius Murray

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Trust – RB D’Andre Swift, TE T.J. Hockenson

If You Must – RB Jamaal Williams

Bust – WR Quintez Cephus, QB Jared Goff


Indianapolis Colts at Tennessee Titans

Trust – RB Jonathan Taylor

If You Must – WR Michael Pittman, RB Nyheim Hines, WR Zach Pascal

Bust – TE Jack Doyle

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Trust – RB Derrick Henry, WR A.J. Brown, WR Julio Jones, QB Ryan Tannehill


Los Angeles Chargers at Kansas City Chiefs

Trust – QB Justin Herbert, RB Austin Ekeler, WR Keenan Allen, WR Mike Williams

If You Must – TE Jared Cook

Bust – RB Justin Jackson, RB Larry Rountree

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Trust – QB Patrick Mahomes, WR Tyreek Hill, TE Travis Kelce

If You Must – RB Clyde Edwards-Helaire

Bust – WR Mecole Hardman


New Orleans Saints at New England Patriots

Trust – RB Alvin Kamara

If You Must – QB Jameis Winston

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Trust – RB Damien Harris

If You Must – RB James White, WR Jakobi Meyers, TE Jonnu Smith

Bust – QB Mac Jones, TE Hunter Henry, WR Nelson Agholor


Atlanta Falcons at New York Giants

Trust – WR Calvin Ridley, TE Kyle Pitts

If You Must – QB Matt Ryan, RB Mike Davis, RB Cordarrelle Patterson


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Trust – RB Saquon Barkley, WR Sterling Shepard, WR Kenny Golladay, QB Daniel Jones


Cincinnati Bengals at Pittsburgh Steelers

Trust – QB Joe Burrow, RB Joe Mixon, WR Ja’Marr Chase, WR Tyler Boyd

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Trust – RB Najee Harris, WR JuJu Smith-Schuster, WR Chase Claypool, QB Ben Roethlisberger

Bust – TE Pat Freiermuth

Arizona Cardinals at Jacksonville Jaguars

Trust – QB Kyler Murray, WR DeAndre Hopkins, RB Chase Edmonds

If You Must – RB James Conner, WR Christian Kirk, WR Rondale Moore

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Trust – WR Marvin Jones

If You Must – QB Trevor Lawrence, WR DJ Chark, RB James Robinson

Bust – WR Laviska Shenault


Sunday Mid Afternoon Slate

New York Jets at Denver Broncos

Trust – WR Corey Davis

Bust – QB Zach Wilson, WR Elijah Moore, RB Michael Carter, RB Ty Johnson

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Trust – RB Melvin Gordon, WR Courtland Sutton, TE Noah Fant

If You Must – QB Teddy Bridgewater, RB Javonte Williams, WR Tim Patrick

Bust – WR KJ Hamler


Miami Dolphins at Las Vegas Raiders

If You Must – QB Jacoby Brissett, RB Myles Gaskin, WR Jaylen Waddle, WR DeVante Parker, WR Will Fuller, TE Mike Gesicki

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Trust – TE Darren Waller

If You Must – QB Derek Carr, WR Henry Ruggs

Bust – RB Kenyan Drake, WR Bryan Edwards, WR Hunter Renfrow,


Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Los Angeles Rams

Trust – QB Tom Brady, WR Mike Evans, WR Chris Godwin, TE Rob Gronkowski

Bust – RB Ronald Jones, RB Leonard Fournette

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Trust – QB Matthew Stafford, WR Cooper Kupp, WR Robert Woods, TE Tyler Higbee

If You Must – RB Sony Michel, RB Darrell Henderson

Seattle Seahawks at Minnesota Vikings

Trust – QB Russell Wilson, WR D.K. Metcalf, WR Tyler Lockett, RB Chris Carson

If You Must – TE Gerald Everett

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Trust – QB Kirk Cousins, RB Dalvin Cook, WR Justin Jefferson, WR Adam Thielen

If You Must – WR K.J. Osborn


Sunday Night Football

Green Bay Packers at San Francisco 49ers

Trust – QB Aaron Rodgers, WR Davante Adams, RB Aaron Jones, TE Robert Tonyan

Bust – RB AJ Dillon, WRs not named Davante Adams

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Trust – TE George Kittle, WR Deebo Samuel

If You Must – RB Trey Sermon, QB Jimmy Garoppolo

Bust – WR Brandon Aiyuk


Monday Night Football

Philadelphia Eagles at Dallas Cowboys

Trust – QB Jalen Hurts, RB Miles Sanders, WR DeVonta Smith, TE Dallas Goedert

If You Must – WR Jalen Reagor, RB Kenneth Gainwell

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Trust – QB Dak Prescott, RB Ezekiel Elliott, WR Amari Cooper, WR CeeDee Lamb

If You Must – RB Tony Pollard

Bust – TE Blake Jarwin, TE Dalton Schultz, WR Cedrick Wilson


Good luck and enjoy the games!

Thank you for reading! You can find more of my work on my IDP Guys Author Page. Feel free to reach out anytime on Twitter at @FantasyLadder for any fantasy football-related advice, questions, or discussion so you can climb the ladder of fantasy football success with me.
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