Fantasy Football Target Trends for Week 3
Welcome to the target trends article for Week 3! Now with two weeks of data in the books, we can officially start looking at season-long trends, though it’s with an admittedly small sample size. Let’s start by taking a glance at the season-long target leaders through two games.
Cooper Kupp, to the surprise of nobody, is already out to a strong target lead. His 29 targets on the season are four ahead of Tyreek Hill and Ja’Marr Chase. When it comes to tight ends, Tyler Higbee is the first to hit 20 targets, putting him two in front of Mark Andrews after two weeks. At running back, Javonte Williams is the early season leader with 16 targets, 12 of which came in Week 1.
I’ll continue to lead off this article with season-long target leaders all year long but for now, let’s check out this week’s target trends heading into Week 3.
Jaylen Waddle: 19 targets, 11 rec
Tyreek Hill: 13 targets, 11 rec
The Miami receiving duo put on a show Sunday, with a little help from Tua Tagovailoa. Waddle blew away his previous career-high, topping it by six targets. They both find themselves inside the top ten in total targets after two weeks, with Hill at 25 targets and Waddle right behind at 24. Even more impressively, they’ve combined for a 61% team target share in the young season. The next closest Dolphin is Chase Edmonds at just seven targets, which equates to a 9% share.
Garrett Wilson: 14 targets, 8 rec
Week 2 was big for rookie wideouts, leading off with Wilson. He saw a respectable eight targets in Week 1, then exploded for 14 targets in his second career outing. He now leads the Jets with 22 targets through two games, which is also the most for any rookie so far this season.
Stefon Diggs: 14 targets, 12 rec
Diggs went nuclear on Monday night, turning 14 targets into three touchdowns on just 45 snaps in the blowout win over Tennessee. His 23 targets on the season are more than three times the next most-targeted Bills, Dawson Knox and Zack Moss, who each have seven. Even when Gabriel Davis returns, Diggs is clearly the alpha in the Buffalo offense and an elite NFL target hog.
Cooper Kupp: 14 targets, 11 rec
Last week I teased that Kupp was on pace for 255 targets on the season. Well, that pace is now down to just 247 targets over 17 games. He’s started the season seeing 14+ targets in consecutive games, something that he never did during his record-setting season last year (though he did accomplish the feat back in 2019).
Chris Olave: 13 targets, 5 rec
Olave’s targets didn’t manifest as many fantasy points as fellow rookie Garrett Wilson, but there could be some big performances on the horizon for the New Orleans rookie. He averaged a 26.1-yard average depth of target (aDOT) in Week 2, a massive number considering the high volume that went his way. According to PFF, he became the first player to have an over 25-yard aDOT on 10-plus targets since Mike Wallace in Week 12 of 2013, and he’s the only one to do so on 13-plus targets in their 17 years of data.
Jakobi Meyers: 13 targets, 9 rec
Meyers continued to produce steady, if not flashy, fantasy production in Week 2. His 13 targets equated to a 38% target share against the Steelers and raised his year-long target share up to 30% for the Patriots. Going back to last season, he’s now seen at least a 20% target share in six consecutive games.
Amon-Ra St. Brown: 12 targets, 9 rec
Nobody should be questioning the Sun God anymore. He hit double-digit targets for the first time in his career during Week 13 last season. Since then, he hasn’t dipped below ten targets in any game, averaging 11.4 targets/game along the way. That works out to 194 targets over a 17-game season, which would be a top-ten season of all time if he can keep it up.
Drake London: 12 targets, 8 rec
London is the third rookie to make the target trends article this week. He joins Garrett Wilson, Chris Olave, and 22 other rookies all time to see at least 12 targets in a game within the first two weeks of their career. These 12 targets against the Rams translated to a ludicrous 48% team target share, bringing him up to an impressive 33% on the young season.
Tee Higgins: 10 targets
Ja’Marr Chase: 9 targets
Higgins and Chase are arguably the best wide receiver duo in the NFL, and they tend to share the volume nicely when playing together. They’ve played 15 games together since Chase was drafted last season. In those games, Chase is averaging 8.8 targets/game, and Higgins is averaging 8.0 targets/game. Those numbers, however, are skewed by a few games that Higgins has left the game early with an injury, including last week when Chase went on to see 16 targets.
Targets in the last 11 full games Tee Higgins and Ja'Marr Chase have played together:
— Adam Levitan (@adamlevitan) September 19, 2022
Hunter Renfrow: 10 targets
Davante Adams: 7 targets
Before Week 2, Renfrow had only eclipsed double-digit targets twice in 48 career games played. It was tough to predict him hitting that mark again anytime soon after Adams’ dominant Week 1 performance, but here we are. Even after just seven targets in Week 2, Admas still leads the Raiders with a 32% target share. Renfrow may have suffered a concussion on his brutal game-losing fumble Sunday, so we need to keep an eye on Darren Waller‘s targets if he is forced to miss time.
Sterling Shepard: 10 targets, 6 rec
Kenny Golladay: 0 targets
Over the past two offseasons, the Giants have made Kenny Golladay one of the highest-paid wideouts in the NFL and drafted two wideouts in the top-50 picks of the NFL Draft. Yet here we are, with Sterling Shepard once again leading the team in targets. He has a 26% target share on the season, just slightly ahead of Richie James and Saquon Barkley for the team lead. As for Golladay, he only played two snaps and was not targeted in Week 2 as his downward spiral continues.
Curtis Samuel: 9 targets, 7 rec
Curtis Samuel, not Terry McLaurin or Jahan Dotson, is the clear target leader for the Commanders after two weeks. His 24% target share is significantly higher than both McLaurin (14%) and Dotson (12%). He also has five rushing attempts so far this season, giving him what appears to be an extremely safe fantasy floor.
Darnell Mooney: 2 targets, 1 rec
Cole Kmet: 1 target, 0 rec
We need to talk about the Bears. Mooney and Kmet were projected to be safe fantasy options given their predictable volume in the Chicago offense, but that doesn’t work when a team refuses to play offense. Justin Fields has attempted just 28 passes through two games. As if the low passing volume weren’t bad enough for Mooney and Kmet, it’s Equanimeous St. Brown that leads the team with seven targets on the season, which unbelievably equates to a 25% team target share on the season.