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June 15, 2021; in Eagle, Minnesota, USA; Minnesota Vikings head coach Mike Zimmer watches over exercises at OTA at the TCO Performance Center. Mandatory Credit: Harrison Barden-USA TODAY Sports
This week we’re going in a bit of a different direction with the last minute fantasy football advice. Normally I go through the waiver list and pick a few players to add to the roster prior to the weekend’s action. This time I will pick out stars that may be due to underwhelming performances.
The 0-3 Giants haven’t had a very successful start to the 2021 season, partly due to how little impact Saquon Barkley has been able to make. Last week against Atlanta, he finally broke a double-digit output with 15.1. However, he still has to reach 100 yards from scrimmage in a game and has only one touchdown.
This week is not looking better for Barkley. In week 4, the Giants head to New Orleans for the Saints’ first proper home game since January 2020. The crowd will be rowdy in the Superdome and the defense will be sufficiently motivated.
Even without the crowds, the Saints have had the third best-running defense so far in the season, making seven substitutions in three games. A solid defensive front plus the potential for turnover will likely make it difficult for Barkley to find any rhythm.
Unlike Barkley, Dak Prescott has made a solid start in manufacturing. Week 2 wasn’t great against the Chargers, but in addition to that day off, there were two 20+ point outputs. However, that weak performance came against an LA Chargers defense that was unexpectedly good.
Again, Prescott and the Cowboys play a team that was surprisingly exceptional to start the year: the Carolina Panthers. Carolina has awarded the third fewest fantasy points to QBs this season, and they have yet to give up 300 yards in a game this season. If a streaming option (like Kirk Cousins) is available, it may be worth leaving Prescott on the couch this weekend.
For the Houston Texans, there was very little to get excited about in 2021. Brandin Cooks was the only bright spot as he ripped the defense apart early in the year. However, his production is about to stop, at least for a week.
With Tyrod Taylor out, Davis Mills didn’t look great in his place. If we go up against a good defense in Buffalo, who gave up the fewest fantasy points to wide receivers and the third fewest passing yards overall, it could be a rough week for Mills, and essentially, Cooks. Better find another option at wide receiver this week.
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