Welcome back! Week 3 is upon us and today we are going to be looking at the top 12 running back plays for Week 3. In Week 2, we had a couple of big performances by running backs. Will there be any this week, and if so, who? Let’s take a look at some of the top running backs heading into Week 3.
Top 12 Running Back Plays for Week 3
1Christian McCaffrey, CAR at HOU (TNF)
Christian McCaffrey has just 1 score and 170 rushing yards on the season, however, he also has 14 receptions which is tied for 11th in the NFL, and 154 yards, the 25th best in the NFL. CMC’s receiving ability makes it so that he doesn’t need to score touchdowns to help your team win. The Panthers will play the Houston Texans on Thursday Night Football. CMC is almost a matchup-proof player, and we should expect him to rush for 90 yards with 1 touchdown and catch 7 more passes for 70 yards and another score.
2Dalvin Cook, MIN vs SEA
Dalvin Cook is another running back that has had great catching ability in the past. So far he has rushed for 192 yards and 1 score. He has also caught 8 passes for 60 yards. He was banged up in the Week 2 loss to the Cardinals and is questionable to start the week. If he suits up, I would expect him to rush for 120 yards, catching 5 passes for 40 yards and 2 total scores.
3Alvin Kamara, NO vs NE
Alvin Kamara has had a really slow start to the 2021 season. He has just 88 yards rushing, 7 receptions, 33 receiving yards, and 1 score. This Sunday, the Saints will host the New England Patriots. The Patriots have an average defense against the run and this could be the game where Kamara gets back on track. 80 yards rushing with a touchdown, and 5 receptions for 60 yards is not out of the realm of possibility for Kamara.
4Nick Chubb, CLE vs CHI
Nick Chubb and the Cleveland Browns will be hosting the Chicago Bears on Sunday. So far this season, Chubb has 178 yards and 3 scores. He has also added 3 receptions for 21 yards, Kareem Hunt is more of the receiving back in Cleveland. Cleveland is banged up at receiver and could rely more on the running game to help them the next couple of games. Chicago will probably be one of the tougher run defenses they will face this season, however Chubb should still see 120 yards and 1 score on Sunday.
5Austin Ekeler, LAC at KC
This next player on the top 12 running back plays for Week 3 is Austin Ekeler. Ekeler has just 111 yards and one touchdown rushing so far in 2021. He also has 9 catches for 61 yards. All of which came in Week 2 against the Dallas Cowboys. The Chargers like to throw the ball, and Ekeler appears to be one of Justin Herbert’s favorite targets. The Chargers face off against the Chiefs in Week 3. The Chiefs have given up some fantasy points to running backs so far this fantasy season, and Ekeler should benefit from that. I expect Ekeler to run for 75 yards and catch 6 passes for 90 yards and have 1 touchdown.
6Derrick Henry, TEN vs IND
‘DHenber’ came early last week as Derrick Henry scored 3 times and rushed for 182 yards. He also caught 6 passes for 55 yards, an impressive stat when he isn’t known for his pass-catching. This type of game is what we have known to expect from him in December, not September. This Sunday the Titans are hosting the Indianapolis Colts, and the Colts have a little better running defense than the Seahawks did. I would expect him to run for 130 yards and 1 touchdown this weekend.
7Aaron Jones, GB at SF
Just like Derrick Henry, Aaron Jones had a huge game in Week 2. On Monday Night Football, he had 67 yards rushing, 6 receptions, and 48 yards receiving. While that might not be that impressive, he scored 4 total touchdowns against the Lions. This Sunday, the Packers will head to San Francisco to face the 49ers. Even though the Niners are not as good against the run as the Lions, I would not expect Jones to have another game as he did in Week 2. I could see Aaron Jones finishing the game with 90 yards rushing and 1 score.
8Joe Mixon, CIN at PIT
After running over the Vikings for 127 yards and a touchdown in Week 1, the Bears were able to contain Joe Mixon in Week 2, allowing just 69 yards. Week 3, the Bengals head to Pittsburgh for a rivalry game against the Steelers. Pittsburgh’s defense has been pretty good this season, but not as solid against running backs as Chicago. Mixon can be used in the passing game as well, catching passes out of the backfield. Joe Mixon could finish this game with 120 yards rushing, 5 receptions, and 45 yards with 1 touchdown.
9Chris Carson, SEA at MIN
Chris Carson doesn’t get as much attention on his team as some of his teammates. Carson has 122 yards rushing for 2 scores. He also has 3 catches for 26 yards. The Seahawks need to get Carson going early to help their offense and spread out the defense. Seattle is headed to Minnesota as well, who let Joe Mixon rush for 127 yards in Week 1. This could be a game where the Seahawks lean more heavily on Carson and not as much on quarterback Russell Wilson. Carson rushing for 100 yards and a score is very likely.
10David Montgomery, CHI at CLE
David Montgomery has received 40 touches in the first two games of the season. He turned those touches into 269 yards rushing, 4 receptions, 28 yards receiving, and 1 score. The Cleveland Browns defense has been stingy on running backs this season, however, they also played Kansas City and Houston–two teams not known for their running games. Montgomery obtaining 110 yards rushing and a touchdown is very possible.
11Tony Pollard, DAL vs PHI (MNF)
Tony Pollard and not Zeke? The Cowboys have been using both running backs lately. Against the Chargers in Week 2, Pollard rushed for 101 yards, 1 touchdown, and caught 3 passes for 31 yards. Elliott had 71 yards rushing with 1 score while adding 2 receptions for 26 yards. The Eagles are a little tougher team against running backs than the Chargers, but Pollard should still see 75 yards rushing, 5 receptions for 50 yards, and 1 touchdown.
12Najee Harris, PIT vs CIN
Najee Harris started putting up fantasy points in Week 2 against the Raiders because of his receiving. He had 5 receptions for 43 yards and a score. He was able to add 38 rushing yards as well. Just 2 games into his NFL career, Harris has just 83 yards rushing, 6 catches for 47 yards, and a score. The Steelers host the Bengals on Sunday and will try to get Harris going. Big Ben is roughed up and Pittsburgh might need to run more in this rivalry game. Harris ending with 80 yards rushing, 1 score, and 6 receptions for 60 yards could be what the Steelers need to beat the Bengals.