Week 3 of the 2023 NFL season blessed fantasy managers with a number of exceptional performances Sunday. Justin Herbert finished the day with 29.3 fantasy points against a Minnesota Vikings team that blitzed 82% of the game. Davante Adams reminded managers why he's one of the top receivers in the league with 42.2 fantasy points against the Pittsburgh Steelers. Sam LaPorta apparently didn't get the memo that rookie tight ends are not relevant, scoring more fantasy points (22.4) than Travis Kelce (19.9). And then there were the two running backs in Miami who went above and beyond.
Raheem Mostert and De'Von Achane put on a show in the Dolphins' home opener against the Denver Broncos. Mostert and Achane became the second pair of teammates to each score four scrimmage touchdowns in the same game. Mostert had 45.2 fantasy points on 20 touches, while Achane (rostered in 16.1% of ESPN leagues) finished with 22 touches and an inconceivable 51.3 fantasy points, the most by any player this season and the third most by a rookie in a single game since 2000.
Achane should be your top priority on the waiver wire this week. The Dolphins' offense has averaged 8.4 yards per play, and 30.5% of their offensive plays have gained 10-plus yards. Miami's offensive line ranks 13th in run block win rate. It would be wise to involve Achane actively in the backfield, especially considering Mostert's injury history.
Here are some other RB options to consider:
Roschon Johnson, Chicago Bears (33.4%): There is one silver lining in the Bears' blowout loss to the Chiefs that fantasy managers should not overlook. Johnson and Khalil Herbert were the only running backs to play snaps for the second consecutive game. D'Onta Foreman has been a healthy scratch over that period. Herbert played 28 snaps against the Chiefs compared to Johnson's 23. However, Johnson scored more fantasy points. As Justin Fields and the Bears search for answers on offense, Johnson is worth stashing. He could be leading Chicago's backfield committee by the end of the season. Johnson faces a Broncos defense in Week 4 that was just demolished by the Dolphins' running game.
Ezekiel Elliott, New England Patriots (46.8%): Elliott will face his former team, the Dallas Cowboys, in Week 4. The Patriots average 29.0 rushing attempts per game, and their offensive line ranks 11th in run block win rate. The Cowboys' defense gave up 19.6 fantasy points to Cardinals running back James Conner on Sunday. Consider Elliott is as a flex option for this week.
Matt Breida, New York Giants (26.2%): Despite leading the Giants' backfield in snaps against the 49ers in Week 4, Breida had only seven touches and 10.8 fantasy points. With Saquon Barkley still week-to-week with an ankle sprain, Breida finds himself on the flex radar for managers in deeper leagues in Week 4. The Giants face a Seahawks defense that has given up the ninth-most fantasy points per game to running backs.
Tyjae Spears, Tennessee Titans (15.8%): The Titans' offense was awful. With Derrick Henry rushing for only 20 yards, Tennessee was held to 94 yards. Spears was the Titans' backfield leader in snaps and routes against the Browns and is steadily getting more touches as the season progresses. Through two games, Henry has averaged just 3.2 yards per rushing attempt, while Spears has averaged 5.5. Spears should be stashed now in case his role in the Titans' committee continues to grow. Henry will be 30 by the end of the 2023 season, and he has a slimmer chance of continuing to produce at a high level. Only Matt Forte and Adrian Peterson have scored 250 or more fantasy points during their age-29-or-older seasons since 2000.
C.J. Stroud, Houston Texans (11.2%): Stroud is the first player in league history to have at least 900 passing yards, four passing touchdowns and zero interceptions in his first three career starts. He has scored 20 or more fantasy points in two straight games and should be seriously considered by fantasy managers.
Kyler Murray, Arizona Cardinals (14.6%): Josh Weinfuss reported last week that Murray might not return to the field after four weeks on the physically unable to perform list. Now is the perfect time for fantasy managers desperate for a quarterback to stash Murray on an open IR slot in deeper superflex formats.
Jameis Winston, New Orleans Saints (0.1%): Derek Carr suffered a shoulder injury Sunday against the Packers, but it isn't expected to be season-ending. Quarterback injuries have plagued the Saints over the past five seasons. Winston finished with 101 passing yards in relief of Carr in the second half. He averaged 18.3 fantasy points per game as a starter. Winston is known for his deep passing abilities and has numerous playmakers at his disposal in New Orleans.
Tank Dell, Houston Texans (23.3%): Dell finished with 145 receiving yards in Week 3, the most by a Texans rookie in franchise history. He has been targeted 17 times and scored 20 or more fantasy points in each game over the past two games. Dell saw a dramatic increase in his roster percentage last week and I expect that trend to continue this week.
While there might be some managers who wonder if Dell will be negatively impacted once Noah Brown returns or John Metchie III becomes more acclimated, I have no concerns. The Texans' offense cannot ignore Dell's talent.
Joshua Palmer (0.7%) and Quentin Johnston (46.2%), Los Angeles Chargers: Mike Williams suffered a season-ending ACL tear on Sunday against the Vikings. The rookie Johnston has just five receptions for 26 yards through the first three games of the season. He should get more snaps and targets as a result of Williams' absence. Fantasy managers shouldn't forget Palmer, who led Chargers receivers with 72 receptions last season. Palmer played 84% of the offensive snaps after Williams left the game.
Marvin Mims Jr., Denver Broncos (8.6%): Mims has a great impact on the Broncos whenever he's on the field, but he's played only around 25% of Denver's offensive snaps. Mims has caught seven of nine targets for 195 receiving yards. He's run 27 routes and averaged 7.2 yards per route run. After Denver's blowout loss to the Dolphins, it's imperative that Mims is given a bigger role moving forward, which makes this week a great time to add him.
Romeo Doubs (27.1%) and Jayden Reed (21.8%), Green Bay Packers: Doubs finally saw a normal amount of snaps Sunday and delivered for fantasy managers. He led Green Bay in targets and receiving yards against the Saints while finishing with 18.3 fantasy points. With seven targets and 9.3 fantasy points, Reed had some missed opportunities with Jordan Love that could have resulted in a much higher fantasy point total. Christian Watson hasn't made his regular season debut yet, and with the Packers playing on short rest, the team might hold him out for one more week.
DJ Chark Jr. (43.2%) finished with 11 targets and 18.6 fantasy points Sunday and now has a very favorable matchup against the Vikings' secondary in Week 4.
Calvin Austin III (1.5%) was targeted six times Sunday and finished the game with 15.2 fantasy points. He has seen his snaps increase with Diontae Johnson on injured reserve and should continue to see significant targets against the Texans.
Jake Ferguson, Dallas Cowboys (19.8%) Ferguson finished with 10 fantasy points Sunday, tying for the team lead in targets. He played 69% of the offensive snaps and ran 29 routes. Even so, fellow tight end Peyton Hendershot played 45% of the offensive snaps and ran 18 routes. Starting Ferguson in fantasy lineups might be risky, but considering how unpredictable tight ends are, you might want to take a chance.
Luke Musgrave, Green Bay Packers (13.3%) Musgrave had a season-high six receptions, eight targets and 11 fantasy points Sunday. He would have had a much bigger stat line if Jordan Love hadn't thrown a poor pass on a potential touchdown. The only other tight ends with a higher route participation rate than Musgrave this season are T.J. Hockenson, Tyler Higbee, Dallas Goedert and Kyle Pitts. Pick up Musgrave if you need help at the position.