Fantasy Football Week 3 Waiver Wire FAAB Advice: Players to Target, Stash & Drop (2022)

Running backs are the big game we’re after on the waiver wire. Every so often, we’ll get a week where a couple of largely unrostered RBs either seize or fall into substantial roles, touching off a bidding frenzy in fantasy leagues. Alas, this is not one of those weeks.

But there are some widely available pass catchers who get our blood pumping — one in particular — along with some interesting speculative RBs. Let’s dive in.

(*Rostership percentages are based on Yahoo leagues.)

Grade: B-

Written by Derek Brown, Bo McBrayer and Pat Fitzmaurice

Week 3 Waiver Wire Rankings

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Running Backs

Written by Bo McBrayer

Raheem Mostert (MIA): 43% rostered

  • Next opponents: BUF, @CIN, @NYJ
  • True value: $9
  • Desperate need: $14
  • Budget-minded: $5

Analysis: Was anyone right about this backfield in Week 2? I seriously doubt it. Mostert was the lead back for the Dolphins in Week 2, with 51 yards on 11 carries and 28 yards receiving on three grabs. Week 1 “starter” Chase Edmonds was second fiddle all day, only finally earning some snaps as Miami’s offense came roaring back for their dramatic comeback win. Mostert does have more familiarity with the McDaniel offense as a derivative from their time together in San Francisco with Kyle Shanahan. It remains to be seen if this was a one-off and whether this backfield will be a thoroughly frustrating revolving door of a committee. Since Mostert looked good with the work given, I am leaning toward this as a sign of continuing preference of Mostert as the RB to covet as the more consistent option.

Kenneth Gainwell (PHI): 45% rostered

  • Next opponents: @WAS, JAX, @ARI
  • True value: $6
  • Desperate need: $10
  • Budget-minded: $3

Analysis: Many fantasy experts preach “talent over situation.” I have long believed that Kenneth Gainwell is the most talented RB on the Eagles. He is the superior receiver and open-field ballcarrier compared to Miles Sanders and Boston Scott. The frustration is with usage. All three of them scored touchdowns in Week 1. Most of the 39 rushing attempts went to Jalen Hurts and Sanders, while Gainwell tied for a distant second in targets behind A.J. Brown. I will be keeping close tabs on the division of labor during the Eagles’ Monday night clash with the Vikings, but there is plenty of evidence to support the idea that Gainwell’s role in the offense is very stable.

Khalil Herbert (CHI): 48% rostered

  • Next opponents: HOU, @NYG, @MIN
  • True value: $5
  • Desperate need: $10
  • Budget-minded: $2

Analysis: Even with a strong game for David Montgomery on Sunday night, Herbert is a very valuable player to keep rostered for spot starts and especially in the event of an injury to Monty. Few handcuff options have standalone value independent of injury, but Herbert is just that. It certainly appears that Luke Getsy is “riding the hot hand” at RB this season, as long as his backfield is healthy. This means there will be Monty weeks and Herbert weeks alike. The Texans and Giants are on the upcoming schedule, which lends optimism that the Chicago offensive line will continue to run-block well and produce in spite of an anemic passing game.

Rachaad White (TB): 34% rostered

  • Next opponents: GB, KC, ATL
  • True value: $5
  • Desperate need: $10
  • Budget-minded: $2

Analysis: The first two weeks of the NFL season have been absolutely belligerent. Most of our preseason assumptions have been wadded up and tossed in the fire. One of those dreams that has not yet materialized, nor been dashed, is a key role for the exciting rookie from Arizona State. White cleaned up with eight Week 1 touches vs. Dallas but was an afterthought in the Week 2 snooze fest in New Orleans. The fact of the matter is the Bucs are using Leonard Fournette at an unsustainable rate, and White is already the clear No. 2 behind him. White is an excellent receiver and pass protector, both of which should curry favor with the ancient warlock Tom Brady as the season progresses. Get him while he’s still cheap.

Zack Moss (BUF): 15% rostered

  • Next opponents: @MIA, @BAL, PIT
  • True value: $4
  • Desperate need: $7
  • Budget-minded: $1

Analysis: The former Utah Ute standout immediately flipped the script on a preseason filled with uncertainty with his surprising Week 1 workload and performance. This will be published before the Bills take the field on Monday night, but there is already reason to believe that Moss is not rostered in enough leagues. Most managers assumed that the rookie James Cook would be a lock to wedge Moss out of the picture in this committee, but Cook’s early fumble paved the way for Moss to earn 12 touches. Six of those were in the passing game, which was interesting in that Buffalo used Moss in neutral and positive game scripts. It was clear that Moss is a different player than the one who struggled last season. The question will be which, if any, of these RBs in Buffalo will be trustworthy for fantasy purposes.

Stash candidates: James Cook, Tyrion Davis-Price, Brian Robinson, Zamir White, Isiah Pacheco, Samaje Perine, Jaylen Warren, Tyler Allgeier, Jerick McKinnon

Jeff Wilson‘s rostership predictably took off like a rocket ahead of Week 2. Elijah Mitchell is expected to miss up to two months with his knee injury and Wilson gained over 100 scrimmage yards versus Seattle. LSU rookie Tyrion Davis-Price was activated and toted the ball 14 times for a paltry 33 yards. Jordan Mason was once again active but did not receive a touch. As short of a shelf life as 49ers RBs tend to have, stashing TDP is still wise in deeper leagues.

Brian Robinson is already performing agility drills and is set to rejoin the Commanders in Week 5. Antonio Gibson is the lead back, but the Alabama rookie provides some thump for short yardage and possibly goal line work.

Zamir White was another rookie who was elevated to active status after an inactive Week 1 but only earned one rushing attempt. To this point, Josh Jacobs has shouldered a massive share of the backfield. White is a stash if Jacobs can’t stay healthy, or if his hideous efficiency continues and Josh McDaniels loosens the reins on his exciting young back.

Isiah Pacheco and Jerick McKinnon have each appeared in the Chiefs’ committee, with McKinnon actually producing some meaningful fantasy points. Clyde Edwards-Helaire has done the most with his piece of the pie, but that is certainly subject to change.

Jaylen Warren and Tyler Allgeier are low-ceiling handcuffs who don’t inspire much at all, even if they are thrust into prominent roles in their respective unimaginative offenses with poor QB and OL play.

James Cook is destined to shine after his disastrous NFL debut. As much of a shot as Zack Moss might garner early this season, Cook obliterates him in the talent department. There won’t be too many weeks to toss the Georgia Bulldog on your bench for free before he starts to put his talents on the screen in a high-octane Buffalo attack.

Wide Receivers

Written by Derek Brown

Garrett Wilson (NYJ): 45% rostered

  • Next opponents: CIN, @PIT, MIA
  • True value: $20
  • Desperate need: $27
  • Budget-minded: $15

Analysis: Wilson blew the doors off Week 2. He led the Jets with a massive 31.8% target share with a robust 14 targets, eight receptions, 102 receiving yards and two scores. With Braxton Berrios banged up, the team finally wised up and utilized Wilson more. He saw his route participation climb from 57.6% to 84% this past week. The upcoming schedule isn’t amazing, but if Wilson garners this type of volume, it doesn’t matter. Wilson could be who we all hoped Elijah Moore would be in 2022.

Jakobi Meyers (NE): 50% rostered

  • Next opponents: BAL, GB, DET
  • True value: $10
  • Desperate need: $17
  • Budget-minded: $4

Analysis: There is no reason a wide receiver with a 29.2% target share after two games should be on the waiver wire. This is a crime. That’s what nearly 50% of fantasy gamers have committed: a crime. The Patriots’ stink is real. I get it, but 9.5 targets per game. You’re going to let that languish on a waiver wire? Make it make sense.

Jahan Dotson (WAS): 23% rostered

  • Next opponents: PHI, @DAL, TEN
  • True value: $8
  • Desperate need: $13
  • Budget-minded: $3

Analysis: Dotson led the Commanders in WR snaps, and routes run in Week 2. He’s been incredibly efficient with his volume through two games. Dotson has only seen five targets in each game, but he’s averaged 3.5 receptions, 49.5 receiving yards, and 1.5 receiving touchdowns. This is a slippery slope of production, as the three receptions for 38 scoreless yards type of box score is coming. That’s the downside scenario for Dotson. The rosier outlook is that this type of production is a sign of talent, and talent earns more targets as the season progresses. I lean on the latter, as Dotson was a stout prospect and entered the NFL with draft capital commensurate with his talent level.

Treylon Burks (TEN): 51% rostered

  • Next opponents: LV, @IND, @WAS
  • True value: $8
  • Desperate need: $13
  • Budget-minded: $3

Analysis: By the time you read this, Burks may have already played for Week 2. Even before knowing the outcome of that game, Burks is a pickup. In Week 1, he only saw 36.4% route participation, but with his performance, that has to climb. He was targeted on 41.7% of his routes (fifth-highest) while ranking seventh in yards per route run. Pick him up.

Russell Gage (TB): 47% rostered

  • Next opponents: GB, KC, ATL
  • True value: $5
  • Desperate need: $8
  • Budget-minded: $2

Analysis: After a 63% route participation mark in Week 1, Gage saw it climb to 82.3% in Week 2. Mike Evans was knocked out of the game early after engaging in fisticuffs. The Bucs were left with Breshad Perriman, Scotty Miller and Jaelon Darden to catch passes from Tom Brady. Gage was less than stellar, with a 17.6% target share, five receptions and a measly 28 yards. With the entire roster banged up, he could easily be the best player left standing if Evans misses any time from injury (or fallout from the UFC experience), or if Julio Jones and Chris Godwin remain injured for multiple weeks.

Greg Dortch (ARI): 2% rostered

  • Next opponents: LAR, @CAR, PHI
  • True value: $4
  • Desperate need: $7
  • Budget-minded: $1

Analysis: With no return date in sight for Rondale Moore, Dortch has been a fun player to watch blossom. He’s seen a 15.6% target share, averaging 6.5 targets, 5.5 receptions and 59 receiving yards with one touchdown. Dortch has the best corner matchup inside for his team in each of the next three games, so he could easily be peppered weekly by Kyler Murray. Continue the feel-good story, Dortch.

Noah Brown (DAL): 1% rostered

  • Next opponents: @NYG, WAS, @LAR
  • True value: $3
  • Desperate need: $6
  • Budget-minded: $1

Analysis: The name isn’t sexy, but the production is. Brown has seen a 19.1% target share through two games with seven receptions and 79.5 receiving yards per game. With his stranglehold on snaps in Dallas and three juicy matchups upcoming, Brown is a decent flex option.

Joshua Palmer (LAC): 34% rostered

  • Next opponents: JAC, @HOU, @CLE
  • True value: $3
  • Desperate need: $6
  • Budget-minded: $1

Analysis: Palmer woke up from his one-game hibernation. He saw a 16.6% target share in Week 2, rolling up 30 receiving yards and a touchdown dance. Operating as the weekly third(ish) option in one of the best offenses in football, he is rosterable, especially for as long as Keenan Allen remains on the shelf.

Robbie Anderson (CAR): 46% rostered

  • Next opponents:NO, ARI, SF
  • True value: $2
  • Desperate need: $5
  • Budget-minded: $1

Analysis: Anderson saw a 32% target share in Week 1 that would never be sustainable, but his 17.5% target share in Week 2 is still valuable for fantasy. The Saints’ secondary has been up and down so far while dealing with injuries, and the Cardinals are a dumpster fire. While it might seem gross, this WR5 type might return WR3 production in each of the next two weeks.

Stash candidates: Sterling Shepard

With a robust set of wide receiver names gracing the waiver wire column this week, I only offer up one name as stash tribute this week. That’s Sterling Shepard. The only reason Shepard isn’t named immediately behind Jakobi Meyers is the Achilles injury history. With Shepard, we still have to see what his effectiveness will pan out to, but I also don’t want to be late to the party. Shepard has never been the flashiest receiver, but that doesn’t mean he hasn’t been one of the most efficient for the last few years. While he didn’t do much with the volume (six receptions, 34 receiving yards), Shepard still commanded a 29.4% target share in Week 2. Volume like that deserves a roster spot.

Tight Ends

Written by Derek Brown

Logan Thomas (WAS): 14% rostered

  • Next opponents: PHI, @DAL, TEN
  • True value: $5
  • Desperate need: $10
  • Budget-minded: $2

Analysis: Now everyone sees why Thomas made my top-five weekend stash list. While his 10.8% target share in Week 2 isn’t ideal, we will gladly take the 37 receiving yards and one touchdown he finished with. Thomas has a mouth-watering streaming schedule over the next two weeks. Start him with the hopes of top-10 upside.

Hayden Hurst (CIN): 19% rostered

  • Next opponents: NYJ, MIA, @BAL
  • True value: $3
  • Desperate need: $7
  • Budget-minded: $1

Analysis: Hurst followed up a 15.1% target share in Week 1 (10th-highest among tight ends) with a 19.4% mark. If he continues to see volume like this, he can be inefficient with it and still likely find himself inside the top 12 of the position if he gets in the end zone. His next three matchups are cakewalks. Don’t be surprised if Hurst is a top-10 tight end after each week.

Evan Engram (JAC): 19% rostered

  • Next opponents: @LAC, @PHI, HOU
  • True value: $1
  • Desperate need: $3
  • Budget-minded: $0

Analysis: Engram falls in the same bucket as Hurst. He might just be the discount version. Engram followed up his 10.5% target share and 81.0% route participation in Week 1 with a banner game in Week 2. He led the team with a 26.6% target share and seven grabs. It doesn’t matter if he only turned these looks into 46 receiving yards. In PPR leagues, with that type of raw volume, you give yourself a shot at the top 12 weekly or higher if you find yourself doing the Griddy in the endzone.

Tyler Conklin (NYJ): 2% rostered

  • Next opponents: PIT, MIA, @GB
  • True value: $1
  • Desperate need: $2
  • Budget-minded: $0

Analysis: Conklin makes this list with a full-time role, at least four grabs in back-to-back games, and a 15.5% target share. He has two above-average matchups in his next three games, making him a low-end streaming option.

Stash candidates: none

Quarterbacks

Written by Bo McBrayer

Jameis Winston (NO): 49% rostered

  • Next opponents: GB, KC, ATL
  • True value: $6
  • Desperate need: $10
  • Budget-minded: $2

Analysis: In the war of QB attrition, there are few options to replace an injured starter who have the upside of Jameis Winston. He is coming off a rough performance against the very tough Buccaneers defense, but his upcoming schedule opens up considerably. Winston was also without his star RB Alvin Kamara for the game and had multiple near misses down the field to explosive rookie Chris Olave. Those who drafted Dak Prescott or Trey Lance to be their starter should look to fill the void with someone who will still produce occasional QB1 weeks.

Jimmy Garoppolo (SF): 4% rostered

  • Next opponents: @DEN, LAR, @CAR
  • True value: $5
  • Desperate need: $9
  • Budget-minded: $2

Analysis: One simple way to replace Trey Lance on a fantasy roster — especially a roster that might include a Deebo Samuel or Brandon Aiyuk stack — is to plug in Jimmy G just like the 49ers did. Granted, Garoppolo has zero mobility or pocket presence, and the Niners have a suspect offensive line, but the weaponry and system have made Jimmy look even more handsome over the years. If it were me, I’d ride with a QB with more upside through downfield passing or rushing ability. Wins aren’t a QB stat in real football, but in fantasy they really can be.

Joe Flacco (NYJ): 2% rostered

  • Next opponents: CIN, @PIT, MIA
  • True value: $3
  • Desperate need: $5
  • Budget-minded: $1

Analysis: Before you laugh and chortle with the “elite” jokes, hear me out. Flacco isn’t good and hasn’t been in a very long time. He is intelligent and is already capitalizing on the ridiculous skill position talent that the Jets have compiled over the last two years. The upcoming schedule is juicy enough to stream the Jets’ vet until Dak Prescott returns or another option emerges. The Bengals just got beaten by Cooper Rush, for crying out loud. The Steelers’ corners were exposed without T.J. Watt on the field in Week 2, and Miami just gave up 35 to Baltimore. Flacco might not put up another four-touchdown game, but he has already demonstrated that he won’t stand in the way of the Jets lighting up the scoreboard.

Jared Goff (DET): 22% rostered

  • Next opponents: @MIN, SEA, @NE
  • True value: $3
  • Desperate need: $5
  • Budget-minded: $1

Analysis: I certainly didn’t have the “Joe Flacco and Jared Goff each toss four touchdown passes” spot on my Week 2 bingo card. Here we are, with Goff really enjoying a stellar receiving corps that will only get stronger as the season progresses. The emergence of amon-Ra St Brown has everyone in the fantasy community marveling at the value built into this offense. D’Andre Swift has also been spectacular for Detroit. Goff was ironically very shaky for most of the game in Week 2, but he was effective at delivering the ball on time to his stars to put on a show. I can foresee him as a stronger streaming option in Week 4, but he’s a garbage time candidate next week in Minnesota as well.

Stash candidates: None

Analysis: With QBs, it is always better to “stream, not stash.” Fantasy managers who lose their starter to injury shouldn’t panic. There are plenty of trophies on the shelf from managers who were savvy about picking up the right QB on waivers each week to maximize potential scoring. Fantasy football is still a week-to-week matchup game, with each slate featuring breakout scores from guys who were sitting on the wire.

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Defenses

Written by Pat Fitzmaurice

Dallas Cowboys: 41% rostered

  • Next opponents: @NYG, WAS, @LAR
  • True value: $1
  • Desperate need: $2
  • Budget-minded: $1

Analysis: The Dallas defense lead the league in fantasy scoring last season and has acquitted itself very well thus far in 2022 against the Buccaneers and Bengals, two high-quality offenses. Now the Cowboys face turnover-prone Daniel Jones and the Giants. Obviously, it’s not ideal that the Cowboys are being quarterbacked by Cooper Rush and won’t be able to keep opponents off the field with a lot of long, sustained drives. Still, the Cowboys are a solid streaming option.

Kansas City Chiefs: 36% rostered

  • Next opponents: @IND, @TB, LV
  • True value: $1
  • Desperate need: $2
  • Budget-minded: $1

Analysis: It’s not a coincidence that the Chiefs have been a top-12 defense in fantasy scoring in each of Patrick Mahomes‘ four seasons as a starter. Mahomes and the Kansas City offense put pressure on opposing offenses to keep pace. That means forcing opponents to throw, and more throwing by opponents means more opportunities for sacks and interceptions. This week, the Chiefs D gets a matchup against a Colts offense that was shut out by the Jaguars last week. Yes, it was an uncharacteristically poor performance by the Indianapolis offense, but the Colts shouldn’t be particularly hard to defend in Week 3 if their only quality wide receiver, Michael Pittman, remains sidelined with a quad injury.

Philadelphia Eagles: 36% rostered

  • Next opponents: @WAS, JAC, @ARI
  • True value: $1
  • Desperate need: $2
  • Budget-minded: $0

Analysis: Carson Wentz has already thrown seven TD passes, but he’s also thrown three interceptions and has eaten six sacks. The Eagles are a solid streaming in Week 3 and might also be playable in Weeks 4-6 against the Jaguars, Cardinals and Cowboys.

New York Giants: 6% rostered

  • Next opponents: DAL, CHI, @GB
  • True value: $1
  • Desperate need: NA
  • Budget-minded: $0

Analysis: The NYG defense hasn’t scored a lot of fantasy points yet, but it’s held each of its first two opponents, the Titans and Panthers, to 20 or fewer points. No. 5 overall draft pick Kayvon Thibodeaux should return from a knee sprain soon to add teeth to the Giants’ pass rush, and the schedule is favorable the next two weeks against the Cowboys (now being quarterbacked by Cooper Rush) and Bears.

Seattle Seahawks: 2% rostered

  • Next opponents: ATL, @DET, @NO
  • True value: $1
  • Desperate need: $NA
  • Budget-minded: $0

Analysis: This isn’t a high-quality defense by any means, but you could almost certainly sneak them through waivers with a $0 or $1 bid this week and have a chance for a decent Week 3 output thanks to Seattle’s Week 3 home date with the lowly Falcons.

Stash candidates: None

Kickers

Written by Pat Fitzmaurice

Dustin Hopkins (LAC): 45% rostered

  • Next opponents: JAC, @HOU, @CLE
  • True value: $1
  • Desperate need: $2
  • Budget-minded: $1

Analysis: Chargers kickers have been considered stay-aways for fantasy purposes because Chargers head coach Brandon Staley has been so aggressive about going for it on fourth downs. Well, Staley was notably less aggressive with his fourth down decisions in the Chargers’ Week 2 loss to the Chiefs. Maybe that’s because the Chargers now have one of the best defenses in the league, and Staley realizes that settling for three points can be OK when your defense doesn’t allow many touchdowns. The Bolts have a terrific offense, too, so there should be ample placekicking opportunities for Hopkins, whether they’re field goals or extra points.

Jake Elliott (PHI): 34% rostered

  • Next opponents: @WAS, JAX, @ARI
  • True value: $1
  • Desperate need: NA
  • Budget-minded: $1

Analysis:

Elliott is tied to a good offense and has a decent enough short-term schedule. He’s just peachy as a streamer.

Jason Sanders (MIA): 8% rostered

  • Next opponents: BUF, @CIN, @NYJ
  • True value: $1
  • Desperate need: NA
  • Budget-minded: $1

Analysis: Maybe you don’t want to roll out Sanders for a tough Week 3 matchup against the Bills. But, hey, this Dolphins offense is suddenly exciting, and Sanders is one of the better kickers in the league. Maybe you should just grab him now and stick him in your lineup, matchups be damned.

Austin Seibert (DET): 45% rostered

  • Next opponents: @MIN, SEA, @NE
  • True value: $1
  • Desperate need: NA
  • Budget-minded: $1

Analysis: This Lions offense is pretty good. It’s good enough that it should provide Seibert with ample kicking opportunities going forward. Seibert has already kicked nine extra points in two games, and he’s 2-of-2 on field goals.

Stash candidates: None

Fool’s Gold:

  • Mike Gesicki had four grabs for 41 yards and a touchdown in Week 2, but he’s only seen five targets in two games, and he’s played just over half of Miami’s offensive snaps this season.

Drop recommendations

Droppable

Mo Alie-Cox isn’t even the top tight end on his own team. Kylen Granson has passed him in value. … If you haven’t already dropped Mike Davis, do it now. Davis doesn’t have a meaningless role even without J.K. Dobbins around, and Dobbins is about to return. … The Seattle offense is anemic, and Noah Fant is at best a third wheel in it. … Kenny Golladay has two targets this season and played two snaps on Sunday. When the media entered the Giants locker room for postgame interviews, Golladay was gone and his locker empty. … DeAndre Hopkins is suspended and Rondale Moore is hurt, and A.J. Green still isn’t making a meaningful contribution to the Arizona passing game. … Trey Lance broke his ankle and is done for the season. DeVante Parker has seen only four targets and has 1-9-0 receiving.

Droppable with a chance of regret

Rex Burkhead isn’t efficient and plays in a low-scoring offense, so he would need heavy volume to pay off in any given week. In Week 2, he had zero carries and three targets as the Texans turned to Dameon Pierce as their lead back. … Cole Kmet has zero catches and only one target. He had 60 catches last year, but Kmet doesn’t seem to be a big part of Bears OC Luke Getsy’s plans. (For that matter, the forward pass doesn’t seem to be a big part of Getsy’s plans.) … It’s possible that Kyle Shanahan will have a change of heart, but Jordan Mason didn’t get a carry or a target in Week 2, as the 49ers gave all the RB work to Jeff Wilson and Tyrion Davis-Price. … After seeing 11 targets in Week 1, Donovan Peoples-Jones saw only one target in Week 2 and was held without a catch. It’s highly likely that Amari Cooper will be the only fantasy-relevant receiver in Cleveland as long as Jacoby Brissett is quarterbacking the Browns.

Don’t drop yet

Hunter Henry had 2-20-0 in Week 1 and was blanked in Week 2, but he’s been a prolific TD scorer for most of his career (at least by TE standards), and the slow start could be a fluke. … Try to hold on to George Pickens a bit longer. We saw the talent in August. Maybe the Steelers will make a QB change and fellow rookie Kenny Pickett will bring Pickens to life.

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