Kickoff: Sunday, September 26th at 1:00 PM ET
Location: EverBank Field, Jacksonville, FL
Betting Odds: ARI -7.5, 52 total via Oddsshark
Kyler Murray (Start, QB1)
Kyler Murray has had a phenomenal start to the 2021 season, averaging over 33 fantasy points per game so far. The Jaguars allowed the fourth-most fantasy points to quarterbacks in 2020, and they don’t seem to be much better this year from what we’ve seen so far. There isn’t much else that needs to be said here. Fire up Murray and expect another dominant fantasy performance in Week 3.
Chase Edmonds (Start, RB2), James Conner (Sit)
Chase Edmonds hasn’t impressed much in 2021, but he has already achieved two RB2 performances this year. Unfortunately, James Conner is splitting carries with Edmonds, limiting the latter’s potential output. Chase is the only running back involved in the passing game, though. Edmonds has caught all his targets so far this year, which helps his production in PPR leagues. The great match-up this week should make Edmonds a dependable RB2 start. Jacksonville allowed the third-most fantasy points to running backs in 2020 and has allowed the fourth-most fantasy points to the position so far in 2021. Start Chase, but keep Conner on the fantasy bench for now.
Wide Receivers/Tight Ends
DeAndre Hopkins (Start, WR1), Rondale Moore (Start, Flex with upside), Christian Kirk (Start, Flex), A.J. Green (Sit), Maxx Williams (Sit)
DeAndre Hopkins’ usage wasn’t encouraging last week (only four targets), but the veteran receiver still caught a touchdown on the day. The touchdown salvaged his WR3 performance in Week 2, but I wouldn’t worry too much about one of the most elite players in the NFL. “Nuk” is a must-start against the struggling Jaguars. The chief concern is the Cardinals quickly taking a massive lead in Jacksonville, capping Hopkins’ ceiling.
The high-powered nature of this offense will make predicting the rest of the receivers’ output difficult. Rondale Moore and Christian Kirk are both worth Flex consideration this week, but it’s anyone’s guess which receiver has the better performance. Moore had a 10-point performance in Week 1 while Kirk put up 24 fantasy points. In Week 2, Moore had the 24-point fantasy performance while Kirk had a nine-point game. I fear this trend may become a “feast or famine” situation for these receivers each week. Still, the impressive ceilings have been set for these receivers, placing them both firmly in the Flex conversation in Week 3. I’m impressed with what I’ve seen from Moore, so I’m ranking him a bit higher. I would like to see his snap count continue to rise, though.
A.J. Green could have some fantasy relevance as the season progresses, especially with the way Murray is spreading out his targets. Although, I’m not sold on him just yet. The veteran’s mediocre three-catch fantasy performance required a touchdown to salvage his Week 2. Green’s stock could be on the rise, but he’s best left on the bench until he turns in an impressive fantasy performance.
Hauling in seven catches for 94 yards, Maxx Williams was the overall TE3 in Week 2. Williams may be worth keeping an eye on, but chasing after last week’s points is probably a bad idea. We need to see more consistency from Maxx before he’s start-able in your fantasy league. Scoring zero points in Week 1 and 16.4 in Week 2 isn’t too encouraging. Plus, Arizona has plenty of receiving weapons on their team, so it isn’t likely that Williams sees seven targets every week. Even with the enticing match-up for tight ends, I can’t bring myself to trust Williams yet.
Trevor Lawrence (Sit, Low-end QB2)
From a fantasy standpoint, Trevor Lawrence has not been very impressive. He wasn’t too bad in Week 1, but he was abysmal in Week 2 with only 6.8 fantasy points and one touchdown. Lawrence has the highest rate of uncatchable pass attempts in the league. The Cardinals are pretty much right in the middle of the NFL when it comes to fantasy points allowed to quarterbacks, but it doesn’t matter much. Lawrence and the Jaguars’ offense haven’t shown they are competitive enough to justify much fantasy consideration. I believe Lawrence will continue to struggle in Week 3. You likely have better options available in one-quarterback leagues.
James Robinson (Start, Flex), Carlos Hyde (Sit)
It seems like James Robinson once again has the lead-back role in Jacksonville, but that may not be enough. The young talented back has only averaged 8.9 fantasy points per game in 2021, mainly because the Jaguars are struggling this year. Robinson’s value could be limited if Jacksonville keeps falling behind early and the team needs to throw the ball to stay in games. The Cardinals are mediocre against fantasy running backs, but the potential negative game script is the primary concern for Robinson. James deserves some Flex consideration this week, but I can’t say I would be very confident with him in my starting lineup.
Urban Meyer may have heard the complaints after Carlos Hyde led the team in carries in Week 1. The veteran only received two carries in Week 2, so hopefully, he’s a non-factor moving forward. Hyde is no more than a handcuff for now.
Wide Receivers/Tight Ends
Marvin Jones (Start, Low-end Flex), DJ Chark (Sit), Laviska Shenault Jr. (Sit), James O’Shaughnessy (Sit), Chris Manhertz (Sit), Jacob Hollister (Sit)
So far this season, Marvin Jones has been the most consistent receiver in Jacksonville. Jones has averaged 18.1 fantasy points per game and was the target leader for the Jaguars last week. Lawrence will likely continue to experience some growing pains, and he’s likely to keep leaning on his veteran receiver for help. Jones’ seemingly stable floor should keep him in the Flex conversation for now, but I have him ranked pretty low within the Flex tier.
DJ Chark, on the other hand, has shown just how low his floor can go with one catch, four targets, and 2.9 fantasy points in Week 2. Chark was mainly a victim of the game script with the Jaguars struggling against Denver’s defense, but it isn’t encouraging to see how quickly he became a non-factor. I have Chark ranked only a bit behind Jones this week, but it’s enough to put him out of Flex territory and on the bench.
The Jaguars expect Laviska Shenault Jr. to play this week despite a shoulder injury sustained in Week 2. Still, Shenault will need to turn in at least one Flex-worthy performance before I can trust him in my starting lineup. I’m keeping Laviska on the bench for now. The targets are there, but the efficiency is not. Shenault saw seven targets before his injury last week but only came down with two of them for negative three yards.
James O’Shaughnessy suffered a sprained ankle in Week 2, which could open up opportunities for Chris Manhertz or Jacob Hollister (if he’s active). Either way, O’Shaughnessy was a desperation tight end play last week. I wouldn’t trust any of the Jacksonville tight ends this week, and it doesn’t matter who gets the start. The Cardinals allowed the sixth-fewest fantasy points to tight ends last year and have done well against the position so far in 2021.
-Ryan Kruse (@ryanpkruse)