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Fantasy Football Week 3 Quarterback Rankings: Are We Ready to Trust Tua Tagovailoa?

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We saw what the advantage can be for Tua Tagovailoa in this new Miami Dolphins offense in Week 3, when he equaled Dan Marino’s franchise record with six touchdowns. Tagovailoa wasn’t perfect, but he made a huge comeback against what we expect to be a very good Ravens defense, throwing four of those touchdowns in the fourth quarter of the win.

So, is he a must-start Fantasy quarterback now? Well, definitely not must start, at least not in week 3. Not yet. This Buffalo defense looks like it could be the best in the league, knocking out Matthew Stafford and Ryan Tannehill five times and keeping them at 5.9 yards per try for their first two games. The Bills had the lowest yards per attempt and touchdown rate through the air last season and they look even better now. That’s as tough a match as you can imagine.

And yet… isn’t it hard to just call Tagovailoa a sit after what we just saw? It’s not that Tagovailoa looked incredible – he looked pretty good, but certainly not like an elite QB. However, it seems that he is in a special situation. The Dolphins have fallen back on 68% of their offensive plays to date, and the combination of Tyreek Hill and Jaylen Waddle is arguably the best WR tandem in the NFL – at the very least it is Surely the fastest.

The bills will be a huge test for this offense in Miami. Mike McDaniel has been a creative coach who has put Tagovailoa in a position to succeed, and his playmakers are so good that if Tagovailoa is decent, he might just be excellent. Tagovailoa has been ranked as a low-end starter this week, and with Dak Prescott and Trey Lance out, we’re a little short on caliber starting options. I probably won’t start Tagovailoa in most 1-QB competitions, but if he puts in another good performance against the Bills, he could be a top-12 QB the rest of the way.

Here are my full QB rankings for week 3.

  1. Josh Allen @MIA
  2. Patrick Mahomes @IND — Mahomes has spread the ball around a ton so far, and he doesn’t seem to miss Tyreek Hill much yet. He had a handful of convertible throws in Week 2 that fell harmlessly to the floor in Week 2, but I’m not going to blame him for that. He remains one of the best quarterbacks in Fantasy, especially with the Chiefs having 73 pass attempts to put in just 45 in two games.
  3. Lamar Jackson @NE
  4. Justin Herbert vs. JAX — Herbert was clearly in a lot of pain after sustaining a rib injury last Thursday, but apparently it wasn’t as serious as it could have been. At least that’s what the team is telling us for now. We’ll see what happens when training starts for week 3.
  5. Jalen hurts @WAS
  6. Kyler Murray vs. LAR
  7. Joe Burrow @NYJ — Burrow’s lineup has so far not been up to the task, although the Steelers and Cowboys may have particularly hard pass rushes, which makes it hard to judge. The Bengals haven’t had their big hits yet, and that was a big part of the attack in 2021. I expect they will have a little more luck against the Jets.
  8. Matthew Stafford @ARI — Stafford looked a lot better when he wasn’t under constant pressure in Week 2, though he still threw in a few interceptions to spoil an otherwise pretty good game. That’s what he does sometimes — remember last season he had two different series of multiple multi-interception games in a row. It’s just part of his game.
  9. Derek Carr @TEN — Carr was much less aggressive in pushing the ball across the field in Week 2, which probably explains why he went from three interceptions to no interceptions from week 1 to week 2. He missed some opportunities for big plays with Davante Adams especially last week, but those opportunities will still be there. He remains a great starting QB.
  10. Russell Wilson vs. SF
  11. Carson Wentz vs. PHI — Disappointment usually follows when you start to have expectations with Carson Wentz, so I’m not ready to say I trust him. But with Dak Prescott and Trey Lance’s injuries, we’re two projected starting QBs behind Fantasy, so Wentz starts sneaking into the conversation. He’ll probably still be good for a few plays that will have you shaking your head every week, but he’s got some real guns in this Washington attack, and they’ve fallen back to throw 98 times in two games. That kind of volume makes Wentz worth starting, even with the main shakers.
  12. Aaron Rodgers @TB — Rodgers coming back from his poor performance in Week 1 was the obvious call of the week. The Buccaneers will be more challenging than the Bears, and Rodgers’ lack of reliable playmakers in the passing game outside of his running backs still makes me nervous to trust him.
  13. Tua Tagovailoa vs. BUF — We’ve seen what the advantage can be for Tagovailoa in this offense, and while I don’t expect him to ever approach 400 pass yards and six touchdowns again, Week 2 showed what he can do with Tyreek Hill and Jaylen waddling on are they. The Dolphins have fallen back to pass 68% of their attacking moves, and if this continues to be a common pass offensive, Tagovailoa could very well be a top-12 QB even if he’s not exactly a great passer – that’s how good Hill and Waddle are.
  14. Trevor Lawrence @LAC
  15. Kirk Cousins ​​vs. DET
  16. Tom Brady vs. GB — Brady predictably struggled against a tough Saints defense without most of his passcatchers, but he could miss his best passcatchers again this week — at least Chris Godwin and Mike Evans will be out. I’m not saying you should let Brady sit, but he’s definitely not a must-start QB right now.
  17. Jameis Winston @CAR — Winston looked like Tampa Jameis in Week 2, for good and mostly bad. He just threw the ball consistently down the field, leading all quarterbacks with an average of 13.2 intended air yards. He has attempted 13 passes at least 20 yards from the field through two games, but has only completed four. It’ll be interesting to see if the Saints continue to let Winston air out — he’ll probably have to be a little more effective on those throws for that to happen.
  18. Justin Fields vs. HOU — The Bears have played just 97 times in their first two games, and Week 2 was perhaps even more worrisome than their week 1 rain-soaked game plan in the Packers loss. You can’t win that way, and Fields won’t be useful to Fantasy if they start their attack that way. His hasty ability still makes him a viable starting option, especially in what should be a much easier match-up than they’ve had so far.
  19. Jared Goff @MIN
  20. Marcus Mariota @SEA
  21. Baker Mayfield vs. NO
  22. Daniel Jones vs. VALLEY
  23. Jimmy Garoppolo @DEN — Garoppolo isn’t a great Fantasy QB, but he has historically been a pretty efficient passer, which is good news for Deebo Samuel, George Kittle, and Brandon Aiyuk. Garoppolo should be a QB2 for Fantasy most weeks.
  24. Joe Flacco vs. CIN
  25. Mac Jones vs. BALL
  26. Mitchell Trubisky @CLE — The Steelers have had 24 offensive drives in two games, and they have two touchdowns to spare. Trubisky is only 8 to 23 on passes 10 yards or more past the line of scrimmage, and it just won’t pull it off. The drum beat for Kenny Pickett will get louder if Trubisky doesn’t turn things around. If you’re in a SuperFlex or 2QB league, consider adding Pickett preemptively.
  27. Ryan Tannehill vs. LV
  28. Cooper Rush @NYG
  29. Matt Ryan vs. KC — The Colts just don’t have anyone to throw at when Michael Pittman Jr. is not healthy. Ryan isn’t worth streaming unless he has his number 1 option available.
  30. Jacoby Brissett vs. PIT
  31. Geno Smith vs. ATL
  32. Davis Mills @CHI

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