Week Three Wide Receiver and Running Back Sleepers

It’s only Week Three and everyone keeps getting hurt. More and more players keep getting added to the list. Not only is the list long, but it has many significant names. These names include Christian McCaffrey, Saquon Barkley, Michael Thomas, Courtland Sutton, Marlon Mack, Davante Adams, and the list doesn’t stop. Not only is this devastating for the NFL, losing such big names, but for us Fantasy Players we are scrambling to find substitutes. I’m here to talk about three wide receivers and three running backs you can utilize this week.

Wide Receivers

Keelan Cole, Jacksonville Jaguars

Cole has quietly been one of the best fantasy wideouts this season. Hauling in 12 of his 13 targets for a total of 105 yards and two touchdowns, Cole is the WR16 on the season. He plays Thursday against the Dolphins who are looking like they’ll be without top cornerback, Byron Jones. This bodes well for Cole’s upside after the Bills threw all over that defense. Buffalo had three different receivers over 70 yards and one over 150. After not much notoriety, the top 16 receiver has a chance to have a breakout game on Thursday.

Russell Gage, Atlanta Falcons

The ideal third wheel is surprisingly the 14th best receiver in fantasy football. Being overshadowed by arguably the best receiver in football the past decade along with the top scoring receiver in 2020, has its perks. Gage is being slept on too much this season and if you aren’t aware let me break it down for you. He seen 21 targets catching 15 of them totaling 160 yards and reaching the endzone once. Russell Gage cannot be slept on any longer, he is a legit WR2 on any Fantasy team.

Michael Pittman Jr., Indianapolis Colts

Injuries to Marlon Mack and Parris Campbell leaves the USC rookie as the number two receiver and a top three team option. He saw six targets last week and against the Jets on Sunday he could be in line for much more. Due to injuries to wide receivers such as Deebo Samuel, Jalen Reagor, Davante Adams, Michael Thomas, Courtland Sutton, and many others, Pittman Jr. is a phenomenal replacement. This weekend, he has a strong shot to be a top 30 receiver against a bad New York Jets defense.

Running Backs

J.K Dobbins, Baltimore Ravens

One downfall of the Chiefs this season has been stopping the running attack. The Chargers showed last week that a strong defense and solid running game can defeat the Chiefs. Running back, Austin Ekeler, had a strong showing as he ran 16 times for 93 yards. Houston’s David Johnson also had a good showing with 11 carries for 77 yards and one touchdown. Baltimore will continue to use the Ohio State rookie equally alongside Mark Ingram and should see plenty of work on Monday. Due to all the injuries, a running back like Dobbins, who can see 15-plus carries against a struggling run defense is a must start.

Jerick McKinnon, San Francisco 49ers

Catapulted into the starting role due to Raheem Mostert and Tevin Coleman’s injuries. Last week against the Jets, he not only scored a touchdown, but rushed for 77 yards. There is little competition for touches in the backfield and that is very exciting for fantasy purposes. The former Georgia Southern back can do real damage against a struggling Giants defense. Not to mention, he is a solid receiving back. Don’t be afraid to fire him up as a borderline RB1 or high-end RB2.

Devonta Freeman, New York Giants

It was only a matter of time until Freeman got the call. So many injuries and now Freeman can become a relative starter for the Giants with Saquon Barkley out with a torn ACL. Dion Lewis and Devonta Freeman are likely to see most of the carries due to Wayne Gallman being a healthy scratch last week. If the Giants were confident in Gallman’s abilities they wouldn’t have scratched him. As a flex option this week Freeman is a strong play. Lewis is more of a receiving back and Freeman is much more complete and could see goal line carries.

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