The best fantasy football gamble of Week 3

The best fantasy football gamble of Week 3

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The best fantasy football gamble of Week 3

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Every week, at least one player becomes my fascination of whether he’s worthy of a fantasy football start as a streamer. The decision can be a mental wrestling match, but for the purpose of brevity, only one player can be chosen as the fantasy football gamble of the week. Be sure to check out one of our newest pieces, Streamers of the Week, from the talented Kevin Hickey.

The best fantasy football gamble for Week 3

Tracking my predictions: 0-2-0
Win: Player produces ≥ 75% of projected fantasy points
Loss: Player produces >75% of projected fantasy points
Tie: Player is ejected, leaves with an injury, or lands on COVID-19 list after publishing

2021 record: 8-9-1
2020 record: 5-10-1

After a major swing and miss in Week 1 by counting on Aaron Rodgers, Los Angeles Rams wide receiver Allen Robinson was the choice for a shot at sweet, sweet redemption. The projection was seven targets, six receptions, 90 yards, a TD (21.0 PPR points). He was thrown to five times, landing four balls for 53 yards and a score (15.3 points) to barely fall short of the 75 percent threshold (72.9 percent) for a “win.” Robinson would have scored a second time if not for the medical “eye in the sky” intervening to end the play even though it had no bearing on him beating coverage and breaking the plane.

Nevertheless, a loss is still a loss, no matter how close he came to pulling through. Onward we go in search of our first dub of 2022!

Tennessee Titans TE Austin Hooper vs. Las Vegas Raiders

Going for broke here … in some ways, it harkens back to my offseason affinity for the former Cleveland Brown and Atlanta Falcon. Despite a sloth-like start in his new confines, Hooper is in an intriguing position to contribute this week. “Contribute” is an extremely subjective word when discussing a player with a whole two receptions in as many games.

Working in Hooper’s favor: He saw an uptick in action last week, going from one to four targets. While TE Geoff Swaim has technically started each of the first two games, Hooper has been in on at least 50 percent of the plays in each contest and saw his snap count top that of Swaim’s in Week 2.

In addition to the Titans needing to open up the passing game to help keep defenders out of the box, Hooper faces a tremendous matchup for his position. The Raiders have met Los Angeles Chargers tight end Gerald Everett (14.4 PPR) and the Arizona Cardinals’ Zach Ertz (15.5 PPR) over the first two weeks. Everett scored a touchdown to get into double figures, whereas Ertz racked up 75 yards on eight grabs. The matchup is 64 percent better than the league average so far, and both teams totaled at least six catches and 77 yards from their collection of tight ends.

The Titans may need to throw more to keep pace with the Raiders, and it’s not like the Tennessee receiving corps has been impressive through two outings. Circling back to the expectations aspect, Hooper needs to post a strong enough line to warrant a flex spot or it’s a wasted opportunity. Don’t bank on the degree of volume Ertz posted, but we can still get a playable numbers from Hooper, particularly if the Titans falter on defense.

Given his current role, no bye weeks, and few TE injuries of consequence, Hooper is more safely utilized in daily fantasy rather than redraft. It is officially time to abandon ship if he doesn’t get it going this week.

My projection: 6 targets, 5 receptions, 52 yards, 1 TD (16.2 PPR points)

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