Week 3 NFL Power Rankings: 1-32 poll, plus surprise fantasy finds

Just like fantasy managers around the country, the NFL Power Rankings crew is concerned about the rash of injuries to skill players around the league. So while we did our usual job of ranking every team, we went a step further and asked the NFL Nation writers to pick out an under-the-radar fantasy player on the teams they cover for fans and owners to pay attention to.

These players run the gamut. Some are highly drafted athletes who are even more important now to feature in a lineup. Others are current fantasy bench players who could be starters, and still others are guys who you should try to pick up on the waiver wire. How we rank in our Power Rankings: Our power panel -- a group of more than 80 writers, editors and TV personalities -- evaluates how teams stack up throughout the season.

Previous rankings: 2 | Preseason


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1. Kansas City Chiefs (2-0)

Week 2 ranking: 1

Under-the-radar fantasy standout: TE Travis Kelce

The Chiefs don't have anyone appropriate for this category, given they have a well-known QB, an experienced group of receivers and a rookie running back who has received a lot of hype. But Kelce, with two touchdowns in two games, is on pace to exceed his career best in scoring. His highest tally is 10 TDs in 2018. -- Adam Teicher

2. Baltimore Ravens (2-0)

Week 2 ranking: 2

Under-the-radar fantasy standout: RB Gus Edwards

All of the fantasy focus on the Ravens' backfield has centered on Mark Ingram II and J.K. Dobbins. But Edwards has outgained them in the first two games, producing 90 yards rushing and averaging 6.4 yards per carry. What limits Edwards as a consistent fantasy option is his lack of touches in the red zone. -- Jamison Hensley

3. Seattle Seahawks (2-0)

Week 2 ranking: 4

Under-the-radar fantasy standout: RB Chris Carson

The surprise isn't that Carson has put up strong fantasy numbers. It's that he has done so more as a receiver than a runner. Over the previous two seasons, he ranked 36th among NFL running backs with 69 targets, an average of 2.4 per game. He has nine targets through two games (tied for eighth) as the Seahawks have started showing more of a willingness to throw to their running backs. Carson has made his chances count, catching all nine of those throws for 81 yards and three touchdowns. He has yet to score a rushing TD, but his PPR value has grown. -- Brady Henderson

4. Green Bay Packers (2-0)

Week 2 ranking: 5

Under-the-radar fantasy standout: RB Jamaal Williams

In Week 1, Davante Adams went off against the Vikings, so the Lions tried to shut him down in Week 2. That's when Aaron Jones ran wild. So if teams somehow try to slow down both Adams and Jones, it could be Williams' turn. He had sneaky production over the first two weeks, averaging 5.6 yards per carry on 18 attempts. We heard Aaron Rodgers rave about Williams during training camp; at some point, the Packers are going to start calling No. 30 more often, especially if they need someone to get tough yards near the goal line. -- Rob Demovsky

5. New Orleans Saints (1-1)

Week 2 ranking: 3

Under-the-radar fantasy standout: WR Tre'Quan Smith

The third-year pro has been inconsistent so far -- but part of that was because of a Week 2 ankle injury last year that nagged him for the rest of the season. He has flashed potential with two 100-yard games and two five-TD campaigns. And he showed Monday night that he'll get more opportunities while Michael Thomas is sidelined. -- Mike Triplett

6. Buffalo Bills (2-0)

Week 2 ranking: 7

Under-the-radar fantasy standout: WR Cole Beasley

He is a known commodity in the NFL, but Beasley was somewhat of an afterthought entering the season. However, he has seen at least six targets in each of his first two games, turning them into 128 yards on nine catches. Beasley's involvement in the passing game shouldn't be a surprise, considering he is picking up where he left off in 2019 -- when he saw at least six targets in 11 of the 15 games he played. He might not have many explosive outings, but he is clearly a factor in a surprisingly fertile Buffalo passing attack (league-leading 359.5 yards per game) and worth rostering in PPR leagues. -- Marcel Louis-Jacques

7. Los Angeles Rams (2-0)

Week 2 ranking: 10

Under-the-radar fantasy standout: TE Tyler Higbee

Higbee finished 2019 on a hot streak, accumulating 522 receiving yards over the final five games, though he wasn't necessarily a go-to end zone target for Jared Goff, catching only two touchdown passes in that span. But after the Rams dominated the Eagles thanks to three touchdown receptions by Higbee -- equaling his total touchdowns from the entire 2019 season -- look for Goff to find the 6-foot-6, 255-pound tight end near the goal line more often. -- Lindsey Thiry

8. Tennessee Titans (2-0)

Week 2 ranking: 8

Under-the-radar fantasy standout: TE Jonnu Smith

Smith is correctly not considered one of the top fantasy tight ends, but he has racked up three touchdowns in two games, as half of Ryan Tannehill's scoring passes have gone to Smith. Tannehill seems to look for Smith a lot in the red zone, which is where all three TD connections happened. It's clear that their offseason throwing sessions are paying off. So far Smith has been targeted 12 times by Tannehill and has eight receptions. Those catches plus his three touchdowns represent impressive production from 12 targets. -- Turron Davenport

9. San Francisco 49ers (1-1)

Week 2 ranking: 6

Under-the-radar fantasy standout: RB Jerick McKinnon

McKinnon was a deep sleeper before the season, as he was returning following two years away because of a knee injury. Now? He could be in line for a whole lot more work. With fellow backs Raheem Mostert and Tevin Coleman battling knee injuries, McKinnon is the healthiest back on the team, which could result in the big numbers the Niners expected when they signed McKinnon in 2018. That doesn't mean McKinnon will carry the freight, but he has the big-play potential and pass-catching acumen to be a key part of the offense for at least the next few weeks. -- Nick Wagoner

10. New England Patriots (1-1)

Week 2 ranking: 9

Under-the-radar fantasy standout: QB Cam Newton

ESPN's fantasy football experts had Newton as QB13 entering the season, which explains why he would fall on this type of list. Newton has been the best thing the Patriots' offense has going -- both throwing (45-of-63 for 552 yards, 1 TD, 1 INT) and rushing (26 carries, 122 yards, 4 TDs). There were questions entering the season about Newton's health and how quickly he could acclimate to the Patriots' system, yet those have been answered with authority through two games. -- Mike Reiss

11. Pittsburgh Steelers (2-0)

Week 2 ranking: 11

Under-the-radar fantasy standout: WR Diontae Johnson

It's hard to call Johnson under the radar when he was a trendy sleeper pick before the season. He is inconsistent and has started games slowly; but he has eight receptions on 13 targets, and he led the Steelers with 92 receiving yards against the Broncos. If Johnson becomes a bona fide WR1 in fantasy, keep an eye on Chase Claypool to develop into the next under-the-radar asset. Claypool has been targeted five times and has five catches -- including an 84-yard touchdown against the Broncos. -- Brooke Pryor

12. Arizona Cardinals (2-0)

Week 2 ranking: 15

Under-the-radar fantasy standout: WR Andy Isabella

The second-year wideout won't get a ton of looks this season because of the cache of talent ahead of him on the depth chart. But when he makes a play in 2020, it'll probably be a big-splash one -- like the 54-yard catch he had Sunday against Washington. Isabella averaged 21 yards per catch as a rookie in 2019, but of his 11 career catches, three have gone for 50 yards or longer. -- Josh Weinfuss

13. Las Vegas Raiders (2-0)

Week 2 ranking: 17

Under-the-radar fantasy standout: RB Jalen Richard

Under the radar, for a guy whose primary role is to catch passes out of the backfield and had 60 receptions in 2018? Well, yeah. You see, with running back Josh Jacobs adding the pass-catching game to his repertoire, teams might forget about Richard -- and that's where he could be awakened by Jon Gruden and Derek Carr. Especially if and when teams start putting spies on Jacobs in the flat. Reintroducing Richard, then. -- Paul Gutierrez

14. Dallas Cowboys (1-1)

Week 2 ranking: 12

Under-the-radar fantasy standout: TE Dalton Schultz

Schultz caught nine passes for 88 yards and a touchdown against the Falcons. He had 14 career receptions entering the game. Dak Prescott wasn't afraid to look his way, even in key situations, including on his 10-yard touchdown late in the fourth quarter. Schultz will benefit from the attention Amari Cooper, Michael Gallup, CeeDee Lamb and Ezekiel Elliott receive, but he should not be viewed as another Jason Witten. If Schultz can be steady -- he had a fumble versus the Falcons after two drops against the Rams -- he can be an asset, but more as an outlet option than a main target. -- Todd Archer

15. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (1-1)

Week 2 ranking: 13

Under-the-radar fantasy standout: The Bucs' defense

Through two weeks, Tampa Bay is tied for the eighth-most fantasy points on defense, which included a five-sack, four-takeaway performance against the Panthers in Week 2. The Bucs' opponent this week, the Broncos, have allowed the eighth-most points to opposing defenses. Tampa Bay's two following opponents are the Chargers, who are among the stingiest in points allowed to opposing defenses (so there might be better options elsewhere), and the Bears, who are tied for giving up the 11th most. -- Jenna Laine

16. Indianapolis Colts (1-1)

Week 2 ranking: 18

Under-the-radar fantasy standout: TE Mo Alie-Cox

Alie-Cox had a career game, catching five passes for 111 yards in Sunday's win over Minnesota. The Colts will likely continue to lean on him while Jack Doyle (ankle/knee) and Trey Burton are out. What made Alie-Cox's performance even more impressive was that the former college basketball player overcame a dropped pass that was intercepted in the red zone on the Colts' opening drive. -- Mike Wells

17. Chicago Bears (2-0)

Week 2 ranking: 20

Under-the-radar fantasy standout: WR Darnell Mooney

In Week 2, Mooney finished with three receptions on three targets for 36 yards and a touchdown. He played 39 snaps against the Giants, more than veteran wideouts Javon Wims (29), Anthony Miller (26) and Ted Ginn Jr. (healthy inactive). The Bears are clearly high on Mooney, a rookie fifth-round pick out of Tulane who ran the 40-yard dash in 4.38 seconds at the NFL combine. Don't be surprised to see Mooney play a substantial role every week, especially since Miller, who is supposed to be Chicago's No. 2 wideout after Allen Robinson II, is still struggling in the consistency department. -- Jeff Dickerson

18. Los Angeles Chargers (1-1)

Week 2 ranking: 22

Under-the-radar fantasy standout: RB Austin Ekeler

Ekeler was targeted just once against Cincinnati a week ago. Coach Anthony Lynn realized Ekeler needed to be more involved against the Chiefs, and he was electric. Ekeler had four catches for 55 yards and ran the ball 16 times for 93 yards. He got the extra yard where none was expected. The undrafted and little-known 5-foot-10 back out of Western Colorado figures to be important down the road. He should, as he signed a four-year $24.5 million contract extension in March. -- Shelley Smith

19. Minnesota Vikings (0-2)

Week 2 ranking: 14

Under-the-radar fantasy standout: RB Alexander Mattison

The Vikings' offense doesn't look great right now, and poor time of possession has hindered the number of chances this unit has had. However, backup running back Mattison is going to be an important asset for Minnesota, particularly in the passing game, if and when the Vikings are able to turn things around. Mattison caught four passes in the season opener, and he is a nice outlet for Kirk Cousins in the short-to-intermediate game. If the Vikings can get Dalvin Cook going, that means more opportunities down the line for Mattison as an RB2. -- Courtney Cronin

20. Houston Texans (0-2)

Week 2 ranking: 19

Under-the-radar fantasy standout: TE Jordan Akins

After catching a Week 1 touchdown at Kansas City, Akins led Houston pass-catchers with seven receptions against the Ravens and was second to only Brandin Cooks in targets. Tight end Darren Fells, who scored the Texans' lone touchdown in Week 2, also will be involved in the offense, especially in the red zone. But Akins is showing the potential to emerge as Houston's No. 1 tight end as the season goes on. -- Sarah Barshop

21. Philadelphia Eagles (0-2)

Week 2 ranking: 16

Under-the-radar fantasy standout: TE Dallas Goedert

Raise your hand if you thought Goedert would be leading the Eagles in targets (17), catches (12) and receiving yards (131) through two weeks. Yeah, me neither. His talent has long been evident, but given that he shares the field with one of the best tight ends in the league in Zach Ertz, it seemed Goedert had a pretty well-defined ceiling. Well, he looks to be breaking through it. -- Tim McManus

22. Atlanta Falcons (0-2)

Week 2 ranking: 21

Under-the-radar fantasy standout: WR Russell Gage

Gage is certainly overlooked playing next to arguably the league's best wide receiver in Julio Jones and touchdown-maker Calvin Ridley. But after two games, Gage has 15 catches for 160 yards and a touchdown on 21 targets, with 63 yards after the catch. Gage has a chemistry with quarterback Matt Ryan from spending extra time with him during the offseason. And Gage has a good understanding of coverages and where to sit down in the zone. Plus, he'll benefit from the defensive coverage being drawn toward Jones and Ridley. -- Vaughn McClure

23. Cleveland Browns (1-1)

Week 2 ranking: 26

Under-the-radar fantasy standout: RB Kareem Hunt

Despite backing up starter Nick Chubb, Hunt has been an integral part of the Browns' offense. He is averaging 79 yards rushing per game at almost 7 yards per carry. Hunt also has been a threat as a receiver, including a TD grab Thursday. That kind of steady production could be useful out of the flex. -- Jake Trotter

24. Denver Broncos (0-2)

Week 2 ranking: 23

Under-the-radar fantasy standout: TE Albert Okwuegbunam

Hey, you said under the radar, right? Broncos TE1 Noah Fant certainly isn't under the radar -- he is second on the team in targets -- but the two-tight-end look has been Denver's best personnel grouping, and given the pass protection troubles, it's going to have to use it more. Okwuegbunam hasn't played yet because of a hip injury, but when he does, he figures to be a red zone factor, and he should enjoy the potential to have a very high percentage of his catches go for touchdowns. -- Jeff Legwold

25. Washington Football Team (1-1)

Week 2 ranking: 24

Under-the-radar fantasy standout: RB Antonio Gibson

Outside of Terry McLaurin, no one is really a strong fantasy play right now; but the one to watch remains Gibson. The rookie has rushed for 91 yards and a touchdown on 22 carries in two games; as the season progresses, he'll get more carries because this offense lacks playmakers -- and he has the potential to become one. He has shown flashes and has come close to breaking long runs; eventually, he will break one or two. The confusing part is that the former college wideout has only caught three passes. That should improve. -- John Keim

26. Jacksonville Jaguars (1-1)

Week 2 ranking: 27

Under-the-radar fantasy standout: WR Laviska Shenault Jr.

His touches went from five in the opener to eight on Sunday, and he will continue to rise as he gains more experience and coordinator Jay Gruden finds more ways to use him. So far, Shenault has lined up at wideout, running back and quarterback and has 119 yards of total offense and one TD. Shenault might not be someone you want in your lineup every week right now, but if he continues to progress, he certainly could be that guy by December. -- Mike DiRocco

27. Detroit Lions (0-2)

Week 2 ranking: 25

Under-the-radar fantasy standout: RB Adrian Peterson

It feels really strange putting a future first-ballot Hall of Famer in this category, but Peterson -- acquired two weeks ago -- leads the team in rushing yards and is averaging 6.4 yards per carry. He is going to get work every week -- although it'll often be in the form of a committee with Kerryon Johnson and D'Andre Swift -- and he still appears have the burst to break off the occasional big run, like he did Sunday with a 25-yard run to the outside. Is he an RB1? No. Is he intriguing as a flex play or an RB play in deeper leagues? Absolutely. -- Michael Rothstein

28. Miami Dolphins (0-2)

Week 2 ranking: 28

Under-the-radar fantasy standout: RB Myles Gaskin

In two games this season for the Dolphins, the 2019 seventh-round pick out of the University of Washington has nearly half the number of carries (16) he had all of last season (36 in seven games played). There's plenty of upside for Gaskin as his role continues to expand among the Dolphins' backfield options with Matt Breida and Jordan Howard. For Thursday night's game at Jacksonville, fantasy players in PPR leagues should keep an eye out for Gaskin as a pass-catcher because the 23-year-old has 11 targets and 10 catches through two weeks. -- ESPN Staff

29. New York Giants (0-2)

Week 2 ranking: 29

Under-the-radar fantasy standout: RB Dion Lewis

Get on that waiver wire and grab Lewis. ASAP. Even if the Giants do sign Devonta Freeman, Lewis is going to play a substantial role. Imagine a plus version of James White in New England with a slightly bigger workload. The Giants trust Lewis in pass protection, and he catches the ball well out of the backfield. They aren't afraid to run Lewis on some early downs, either. He is the best bet to be the Giants' top running back with Saquon Barkley out for the season. -- Jordan Raanan

30. Carolina Panthers (0-2)

Week 2 ranking: 30

Under-the-radar fantasy standout: WR Robby Anderson

No player has benefited more from Joe Brady's fast-paced offense than Anderson, who leads the team in receptions with 15 and is second in targets with 18. He has topped 100 yards receiving in both games -- 109 on nine targets in Sunday's loss to Tampa Bay and 114 yards and a touchdown in the opening loss to the Raiders. He has developed a solid chemistry with quarterback Teddy Bridgewater. With the Panthers seemingly destined to play from behind, Anderson will continue to flourish and become more consistent, something that has kept him from being a top receiver in the past. -- David Newton

31. Cincinnati Bengals (0-2)

Week 2 ranking: 31

Under-the-radar fantasy standout: TE Drew Sample

C.J. Uzomah was turning into a surprisingly viable fantasy target before he suffered a season-ending Achilles injury. Look for Sample to take Uzomah's spot and take advantage of a more varied passing attack with rookie quarterback Joe Burrow. Last year, the Bengals didn't have a player rank in the top 25 in average points per week in standard or PPR leagues. Uzomah was in the top 15 and averaging 11.4 points in PPR scoring through the first two weeks. -- Ben Baby

32. New York Jets (0-2)

Week 2 ranking: 32

Under-the-radar fantasy standout: RB La'Mical Perine

This is way under the radar, but the rookie running back is expected by team insiders to grow into a prominent role. Don't be surprised if it happens soon. With Le'Veon Bell (hamstring) on IR for two more games, it's Frank Gore and Perine -- and we all know Gore isn't the future. Perine has the explosiveness the Jets desperately need, and he should start to get more carries. -- Rich Cimini