The Week 3 NFL schedule for the 2022 season is stacked with great matchups, and we have you covered with what you need to know heading into the weekend. Our NFL Nation reporters bring us the biggest keys to every game and a bold prediction for each matchup.
Additionally, ESPN Stats & Information provides a big stat to know and a betting nugget for each contest, and our Football Power Index (FPI) goes inside the numbers with a matchup rating (on a scale of 1 to 100) and a game projection. ESPN researcher Kyle Soppe hands out helpful fantasy football intel, as well. Finally, Seth Walder and Eric Moody give us final score picks for every game. Everything you want to know is here in one spot to help you get ready for a loaded weekend of NFL football.
Let’s get into the full Week 3 slate, including a faceoff between two top AFC offenses in Buffalo-Miami, Tom Brady vs. Aaron Rodgers for perhaps the last time, Carson Wentz playing his old team and Patrick Mahomes and Matt Ryan doing battle in Indy. It all culminates with a Monday Night Football matchup between the Cowboys and the Giants on ESPN. (Game times are Sunday unless otherwise noted.)
Thursday: CLE 29, PIT 17
1 p.m. ET | CBS | Spread: KC -5.5 (50.5)
What to watch for: The Colts will need to sustain drives in this game, given the Chiefs’ offensive prowess. But that will require some marked improvement on third down, where the Colts have struggled. They were 2-of-10 on third down in a Week 2 shutout loss at Jacksonville, and their 32.0% conversion rate through two weeks is No. 23 in the NFL. Meanwhile, the Chiefs are off to a great start in terms of stopping opponents on third down. Kansas City entered Week 2 sixth in third-down defense, allowing conversions just 28.6% of the time. — Stephen Holder
Bold prediction: Colts quarterback Matt Ryan will throw as many touchdown passes as Chiefs signal-caller Patrick Mahomes. The Colts have been a difficult puzzle for Mahomes. In two career games against Indianapolis (including playoffs), Mahomes has one TD pass, eight sacks and a QBR of 56.3. — Adam Teicher
Stat to know: Chiefs tight end Travis Kelce leads all tight ends with 172 receiving yards and 10 receiving first downs. And the Colts have allowed a league-high 87% completion rate on passes targeting tight ends this season.
What to know for fantasy: Indianapolis running back Jonathan Taylor hurt you last week, but fear not … he has over 100 rushing yards or a rushing score in each of his past six games when Indy is an underdog. See Week 3 rankings.
Betting nugget: Kansas City is 47-25-1 against the spread (ATS) on the road under coach Andy Reid (.653), the best mark in the NFL in that span. Indianapolis, meanwhile, is 0-4 ATS in its past four games, and Ryan is 0-5-1 ATS in his past six starts. Read more.
Moody’s pick: Chiefs 40, Colts 14
Walder’s pick: Chiefs 34, Colts 17
FPI prediction: KC, 59.1% (by an average of 2.8 points)
1 p.m. ET | CBS | Spread: BUF -5.5 (52)
What to watch for: Several league leaders through two weeks will be on the field Sunday. Wide receivers Tyreek Hill (284 yards), Stefon Diggs (270 yards) and Jaylen Waddle (240 yards) are the NFL’s three leading receivers, catching passes from the league’s leading and fourth-leading passers, respectively, in the Dolphins’ Tua Tagovailoa (739 passing yards) and the Bills’ Josh Allen (614 passing yards). And on the defensive side of things, Bills safety Jordan Poyer is one of five players with multiple interceptions this season. — Marcel Louis-Jacques
Bold prediction: Allen will throw for at least 325 yards and five touchdown passes, continuing his impressive streak of success against the Dolphins (19 passing touchdowns, four rushing touchdowns and three turnovers in his past seven games vs. Miami). The Dolphins’ defense has struggled this season against the pass, giving up a league-high 9.0 yards per passing attempt and a 71.2% completion percentage (28th). Allen leads the NFL in Total QBR (87.1) and should have no problem taking advantage. — Alaina Getzenberg
Stat to know: Since the start of last season, no defense has been better at taking away the deep ball than the Bills. Over that span, Buffalo ranks first in opponent QBR and opponent completions, and it hasn’t allowed a single touchdown on passes thrown 20-plus yards downfield. But Tagovailoa threw two such TDs in Week 2.
Daniel Dopp and Field Yates talk Stefon Diggs after his massive game against the Eagles.
What to know for fantasy: Allen averages 28 fantasy points per game against the Dolphins over eight career starts, having thrown multiple scores in each of those games. See Week 3 rankings.
Betting nugget: Buffalo is 6-1-1 ATS in its past eight division games, but Miami is 10-4-1 ATS in its past 15 division games. Read more.
Moody’s pick: Bills 31, Dolphins 27
Walder’s pick: Bills 30, Dolphins 23
FPI prediction: BUF, 60.7% (by an average of 3.2 points)
1 p.m. ET | Fox | Spread: LV -2.5 (45.5)
What to watch for: Keep an eye on how the Titans defend Raiders receiver Davante Adams, who will likely get his share of targets since he was shut out in the second half last week. Titans defensive coordinator Shane Bowen said he expects the Raiders to create ways to get Adams the ball often. Tennessee struggled on Monday, giving up 12 receptions for 142 yards and three touchdowns to Bills receiver Stefon Diggs, but it should now get help from cornerback Kristian Fulton, who was out with a hamstring injury. — Turron Davenport
Bold prediction: Las Vegas edge rusher Chandler Jones will have a three-sack game. He has yet to record a sack for the Raiders after signing a three-year, $52.5 million contract, but he returns to the scene of his five-sack performance in last season’s opener. The guy who should block Jones, Taylor Lewan, suffered a knee injury and might not play. Time for Jones to eat again. — Paul Gutierrez
Stat to know: Tennessee quarterback Ryan Tannehill is 4-0 in his career against the Raiders. In those games, he has nine touchdown throws, two interceptions and a 71% completion rate. And he produced at least 200 passing yards in each of the four contests.
What to know for fantasy: Adams sank your Week 2 lineup with just 9.2 fantasy points, but he figures to bounce back in a big way. Since the beginning of 2019, he has played in the week following a single-digit performance three times, and in those games he produced 17.6 points, 28 points and 23.3 points (average of 23 points per game). See Week 3 rankings.
Betting nugget: Since 2017, Las Vegas is 1-8-1 ATS as a road favorite (1-5 ATS since moving to Las Vegas). Read more.
Moody’s pick: Raiders 30, Titans 27
Walder’s pick: Raiders 24, Titans 13
FPI prediction: LV, 58.3% (by an average of 2.5 points)
Matchup must-reads: Carr says he is ‘much more comfortable’ but still adapting to McDaniels’ system … Bills flex muscles in dominant win over Titans … Has karma come calling for Raiders with late-game pitfalls, 0-2 start? … Ranking 0-2 NFL teams from eliminated to alive in the 2022 playoff race
1 p.m. ET | Fox | Spread: BAL -3 (43.5)
What to watch for: The Patriots’ 17-3 record in home openers since 2002 ranks as the third-best mark in the NFL over that span. Of course, the majority of that success was with Tom Brady as New England’s QB. Coach Bill Belichick could have had Ravens quarterback Lamar Jackson as Brady’s successor — the Pats brought Jackson to town for a pre-draft visit in 2018 but passed on him twice during Round 1 — and said this week that Jackson has answered any questions about his ability to play in the pocket. Jackson has at least three passing touchdowns in each of his first two games of the season for the first time in his career. — Mike Reiss
Bold prediction: The Ravens will rebound and hold the Patriots under 10 points after last week’s fourth-quarter collapse. Under coach John Harbaugh, Baltimore has shown perseverance, giving up an average of 19.5 points the week after allowing 40 or more points. New England quarterback Mac Jones has eclipsed 20 points in three of his past eight starts (including playoffs), and the Patriots’ 24 points are their fewest through two games since 2001 (20). — Jamison Hensley
Stat to know: Baltimore tight end Mark Andrews has at least 50 receiving yards in 11 consecutive games, tied for the second-longest active streak in the NFL (Cooper Kupp, 19). Andrews’ 30 career TD catches are also just one shy of passing Torrey Smith for the second most in Ravens history (Todd Heap, 41).
Field Yates evaluates Rashod Bateman’s strong fantasy production so far this season.
What to know for fantasy: Jackson already has as many three-TD pass games this year as he had last, and he posted over 115 rushing yards for the seventh time in his career last week. See Week 3 rankings.
Betting nugget: Bill Belichick is 15-5 ATS and 12-8 outright as a home underdog with New England. That ATS mark is the best out of 46 coaches to be home underdogs at least 20 times in the Super Bowl era (including playoffs). Read more.
Moody’s pick: Ravens 37, Patriots 19
Walder’s pick: Ravens 27, Patriots 10
FPI prediction: BAL, 56.9% (by an average of 2.1 points)
Matchup must-reads: Ravens’ Jackson has elbow issue, skips throwing at practice but vows to play vs. Patriots … ‘That’s part of the winning formula’: Patriots boost confidence with strong finishing drive … How the Ravens’ Tucker became one of the NFL’s all-time greatest kickers … Patriots trade OT Herron to Raiders … Ravens add Pierre-Paul to aid pass rush
1 p.m. ET | CBS | Spread: CIN -6 (45)
What to watch for: The Bengals are trying to avoid becoming the first team since the 2002 Rams to start 0-3 after reaching the Super Bowl the previous season, and they face another backup quarterback. They lost to the Cowboys’ Cooper Rush last week, and now it’s on to 37-year-old Joe Flacco, who rallied the Jets to a miraculous comeback last week against the Browns. The Jets, infused with confidence after their stunning win, will try to go above .500 for the first time since winning the 2018 opener. Yeah, it’s been a long time. — Rich Cimini
Bold prediction: The Bengals will give up 300 passing yards — in a win. The Jets lead the league in designed pass plays and are 30th in touchdowns allowed per drive, while Flacco has 103 pass attempts through two games (second most by any player since the 1970 merger). This could be the high-scoring affair that helps the Bengals’ offense find its rhythm after a lackluster start to the season. — Ben Baby
Stat to know: Bengals quarterback Joe Burrow has already been sacked 13 times, tied for the most taken by any QB through two team games over the past 20 seasons. He has also yet to throw a TD of 10-plus air yards this season after throwing a league-leading 19 of them last year.
Betting nugget: Unders are 17-8 in road games for Bengals coach Zac Taylor. Read more.
Moody’s pick: Bengals 37, Jets 20
Walder’s pick: Bengals 30, Jets 13
FPI prediction: CIN, 77.8% (by an average of 9.0 points)
Matchup must-reads: Burrow: ‘Nobody’s panicking’ over 0-2 Bengals … Dancing Flacco mocked by his kids but hailed by Jets … Burrow not immune from Bengals’ early offensive struggles … How the Jets turned a 99.9% chance of losing into a win over the Browns … Bengals’ O-line: We need to earn Burrow’s trust
1 p.m. ET | Fox | Spread: PHI -6.5 (47)
What to watch for: Both teams feature productive receiving corps. Philadelphia’s A.J. Brown ranks sixth in the NFL with 224 yards, while Quez Watkins already has a 53-yard touchdown catch and DeVonta Smith averaged 14.3 yards per catch last season. Meanwhile, Washington’s top three receivers — Terry McLaurin, Curtis Samuel and Jahan Dotson — all have at least 99 receiving yards this season. The Commanders’ receivers have already combined for six touchdown catches, four fewer than all of 2021. So the key will be which defense can limit the big play. Washington has allowed four pass plays of 25 yards or longer, one more than the Eagles. — John Keim
Bold prediction: Philadelphia quarterback Jalen Hurts will rush for 100-plus yards. The Commanders are last in the NFL in yards allowed per rush at 7.5. (The Eagles’ defense is second worst, by the way, at 6.2.) That’s not the kind of vulnerability you want when facing an Eagles team that led the league in rushing a year ago and ranks second in that category (379 yards) through two games this season. Hurts’ only 100-yard rushing game to date came in his first career start (against the Saints in 2020). This is an opportunity to do it again. — Tim McManus
Stat to know: Washington quarterback Carson Wentz (formerly of the Eagles) has 650 passing yards (second in the NFL) and seven TD passes (tied for league lead). The last Washington QB with more passing touchdowns through three games was Sonny Jurgensen in 1968 (eight).
The Fantasy Focus crew lays out why Curtis Samuel has been a breakout star in fantasy this season.
What to know for fantasy: McLaurin went over 23 fantasy points in each of his first two career meetings with the Eagles, but he has averaged just 10.1 fantasy points per game in the four meetings since then. See Week 3 rankings.
Betting nugget: Wentz is 5-1 ATS in his past six games as an underdog. Read more.
Moody’s pick: Eagles 30, Commanders 17
Walder’s pick: Eagles 24, Commanders 20
FPI prediction: PHI, 60.4% (by an average of 3.2 points)
Matchup must-reads: Inside the Eagles’ 2020 QB shift that altered careers for Hurts, Wentz … Wentz reflects on time with Eagles: ‘A wild ride’ … Eagles rookie Covey parked with fans after being denied access to players lot … Commanders’ defense must do more to help explosive offense … Source: Roullier may need season-ending surgery
1 p.m. ET | Fox | Spread: MIN -5.5 (53)
What to watch for: The past three games between these teams have each been decided by two points, and the outcomes of both of last season’s games were turned by scores on the final play. Vikings kicker Greg Joseph won the first with a 54-yard field goal, and Lions receiver Amon-Ra St. Brown won the other with an 11-yard touchdown catch. This season, the Lions’ rushing offense is averaging an NFL-high 7.2 yards per carry. That will pose a major test for a Vikings defense giving up 5.3 yards per rush, the fifth highest in the NFL. — Kevin Seifert
Bold prediction: St. Brown will set a new NFL record with his ninth straight game with eight or more receptions. He was named the NFC Offensive Player of the Week on Wednesday, becoming Detroit’s first receiver to win that honor since Calvin Johnson in 2015. He’s brimming with confidence after hitting career highs in receiving yards (116) and TDs (two) in the Week 2 win over Washington, and Detroit quarterback Jared Goff describes him as “a very friendly target” with his route running and fundamentals. He should again get a lot of attention in Minnesota. — Eric Woodyard
Stat to know: Minnesota running back Dalvin Cook had just 17 rushing yards last week, his third fewest in a game over his career. And while he has missed the Vikings’ past three matchups against the Lions, Cook has averaged 106.3 rush yards per game and scored six rushing TDs in six career contests against Detroit.
What to know for fantasy: Vikings receiver Adam Thielen‘s value is largely generated from touchdowns, but the veteran has gone consecutive seasons without scoring against the Lions. See Week 3 rankings.
Betting nugget: Minnesota has covered the spread the past four times it has been a favorite (1-0 this season). And over the past 10 seasons, it is a league-best 41-21-2 ATS after a loss (.661). Read more.
Moody’s pick: Vikings 34, Lions 20
Walder’s pick: Lions 30, Vikings 27
FPI prediction: MIN, 65.7% (by an average of 4.6 points)
1 p.m. ET | Fox | Spread: NO -3 (41)
What to watch for: This game could come down to third down, which would favor the Saints. New Orleans ranks third in the NFL in holding opponents to a 33.3% conversion rate, whereas the Panthers’ offense ranks 29th at 26.1%. When you’re in close games — as the Panthers have been — that’s huge. — David Newton
Bold prediction: The Saints’ pass rush will come alive for the first time this season, recording multiple sacks. New Orleans has only one sack this season, but Panthers quarterback Baker Mayfield has already been sacked six times through two games. Expect Saints defensive end Marcus Davenport to come up with a big game for the first time since amputating part of his pinkie in the offseason. — Katherine Terrell
Stat to know: New Orleans quarterback Jameis Winston already has three interceptions this season, but he is averaging 10.7 air yards per attempt this season — second-highest in the NFL and 2.5 yards higher than his average last year.
Field Yates says that Baker Mayfield needs to get the ball to DJ Moore in order for the Panthers to be more successful.
What to know for fantasy: Panthers receiver Robbie Anderson has run 165 routes across five career games against the Saints. He has just 39.2 fantasy points to show for those wind sprints and hasn’t seen a red zone target against New Orleans since joining Carolina. See Week 3 rankings.
Betting nugget: Since 2015, New Orleans is 29-15 ATS against division opponents. And since 2016, Carolina is 12-24 ATS in such games. Read more.
Moody’s pick: Saints 20, Panthers 17
Walder’s pick: Saints 19, Panthers 16
FPI prediction: NO, 50.1% (by an average of 0.2 points)
Matchup must-reads: Concerns continue to mount for Saints’ offense as Winston battles injuries … Mayfield hasn’t been ‘good enough’ during Panthers’ 0-2 start … Saints’ Marshon Lattimore ejected after brawl … Mayfield not living up to franchise QB expectations with two close losses
1 p.m. ET | CBS | Spread: CHI -2.5 (40)
What to watch for: The Bears have totaled 28 pass attempts through the first two weeks of the season. Every other team in the NFL has at least 28 completions. Chicago’s passing game has gotten off to a rocky start, prompting questions about the lack of involvement for Justin Fields‘ top skill players and the team’s trust in the QB to throw the ball. Houston has problems of its own in the passing game, fueled by up-and-down performances from QB Davis Mills. While both teams try to iron out their offensive identities, Chicago’s edge in the run game behind David Montgomery could be what tips this matchup. — Courtney Cronin
Bold prediction: The Texans will earn their first win of the year, and the stagnant offense (averaging 14.5 points) will finally wake up. Houston wants to run the ball with rookie running back Dameon Pierce so that Mills can play efficient football. The Bears’ rushing defense is last in the NFL, allowing 189.5 yards on the ground, and that should be enough to spark the Texans’ best offensive performance so far. — DJ Bien-Aime
Stat to know: The Bears are 6-of-21 (28.6%) on third-down conversions this season, tied for fifth worst in NFL. And they had a league-worst 34.7% third-down conversion rate last season.
What to know for fantasy: Pierce played nearly 63% of the snaps in Week 2 after failing to hit the 30% mark in Week 1. The team discussed more involvement, made good on that report and now gets a questionable Bears defense. See Week 3 rankings.
Betting nugget: Houston is 2-0 ATS this season and is 5-1 ATS in its past six games. Read more.
Moody’s pick: Bears 23, Texans 17
Walder’s pick: Bears 20, Texans 12
FPI prediction: CHI, 54.0% (by an average of 1.1 points)
4:05 p.m. ET | CBS | Spread: LAC -7 (47)
What to watch for: Chargers quarterback Justin Herbert suffered a fracture to his rib cartilage in a Week 2 loss to the Chiefs, leaving his availability against the Jaguars uncertain. The Bolts have backups Chase Daniel and Easton Stick at the ready in case Herbert can’t go or is unable to make it through the entire game. The Jaguars’ defense is coming off a dominant performance against the Colts, in which it intercepted quarterback Matt Ryan three times in a shutout. Jacksonville’s plus-5 turnover margin is the NFL’s best through two games. If Herbert can’t play, watch for the Jaguars’ defense to try to come up big again. — Lindsey Thiry
Bold prediction: Los Angeles running back Austin Ekeler will gain nearly 200 all-purpose yards. In two previous games against Jacksonville, he has 332 yards and three touchdowns from scrimmage while averaged 12.9 yards per touch. And with Herbert banged up, expect the Chargers to feature Ekeler heavily to keep the pass rush off their quarterback. — Mike DiRocco
Stat to know: Jaguars quarterback Trevor Lawrence had a 95.3 Total QBR in his previous game (vs. the Colts), the highest single-game QBR of his career. But he has not had a QBR of 50.0 or better in consecutive games over his career.
The Fantasy Focus crew discuss Austin Ekeler’s lack of involvement in the Chargers’ offense.
What to know for fantasy: Chargers tight end Gerald Everett had a touchdown in Week 1 and 10 targets in Week 2. People are catching on, but he is available in too many leagues despite having a pair of top-eight finishes on his 2022 ledger. See Week 3 rankings.
Betting nugget: Los Angeles’ past eight September games have gone under the total. Read more.
Moody’s pick: Chargers 34, Jaguars 24
Walder’s pick: Chargers 28, Jaguars 14
FPI prediction: LAC, 77.3% (by an average of 8.7 points)
4:25 p.m. ET | Fox | Spread: TB -1 (42)
What to watch for: Look for the ground game to play a key role and help offset some of each team’s pass game struggles. Both defenses have had issues against the run. Tampa Bay running back Leonard Fournette has already amassed 192 rushing yards (fifth most in the league), while Green Bay’s duo of Aaron Jones and AJ Dillon has combined for 287 yards on the ground — including 6.0 rushing yards on the perimeter, the most in the NFL. — Jenna Laine
Bold prediction: The defenses will decide this game, not quarterbacks Aaron Rodgers and Tom Brady. Rodgers and Brady were 1-2 in Total QBR last season. This year? Brady is 23rd, and Rodgers is 25th. The Bucs won’t have suspended receiver Mike Evans, and the Packers are still getting used to life without Davante Adams. Through two weeks, both teams’ defenses rank in the top 10 in fewest points against and fewest yards allowed. — Rob Demovsky
Stat to know: Since the start of last season, Rodgers has been one of the worst QBs in the league under pressure, ranking 27th in QBR, 29th in completion percentage and 30th in yards per attempt. He’ll face a Buccaneers team that ranks fifth in pressure percentage (32%) over that same span.
What to know for fantasy: Mr. Anything But September? In Rodgers’ past three road games in September, he has totaled just 589 passing yards and two passing scores. He has more interceptions than touchdowns in those games, and you have more rushing yards than he does (minus-1). See Week 3 rankings.
Betting nugget: Tampa Bay has covered four straight games when its line is anything from +3 to -3. Read more.
Moody’s pick: Buccaneers 27, Packers 21
Walder’s pick: Packers 27, Buccaneers 24
FPI prediction: TB, 61.0% (by an average of 3.2 points)
Matchup must-reads: ‘I’ve got to play better’: Rodgers laments missed chances despite Packers’ victory … Without Evans, are the Buccaneers in trouble against the Packers? … Rodgers says his tablet situation was different from Brady’s in one key regard … Bucs DT Hicks has plantar fascia tear, expected to miss a month … Runyan shoots down conspiracy theories around dad issuing Evans a suspension … Buccaneers to sign WR Beasley to practice squad
4:25 p.m. ET | Fox | Spread: LAR -3.5 (48.5)
What to watch for: The key to Sunday will be how fast the Cardinals can start, an issue that has plagued them in the first two games of the season. A quick start can set the tone, especially if the pace can neutralize defensive tackle Aaron Donald. But if the Cardinals get in a situation, yet again, where they have to pass a lot to catch up, Donald can pin his ears back and go. That’s one thing Arizona doesn’t want, especially considering quarterback Kyler Murray‘s 47.1 Total QBR against the Rams is his fifth worst against any opponent over his career. — Josh Weinfuss
Bold prediction: Rams quarterback Matthew Stafford won’t throw an interception. He has been intercepted five times in Los Angeles’ first two games and has now thrown multiple interceptions in five straight regular-season games, which is the longest streak of his career. But Arizona has forced just two turnovers in its first two games, and neither was an interception. — Sarah Barshop
Stat to know: Los Angeles receiver Cooper Kupp has eight straight games with a receiving touchdown (including playoffs), the longest active streak in the NFL. The last player to do it in nine or more consecutive games was A.J. Green in 2012 (nine straight).
Liz Loza breaks down if Matthew Stafford is still a top-12 fantasy quarterback.
What to know for fantasy: The Rams have run the ball 74 times over their past three meetings with the Cardinals. Not a one of those carries gained 20 or more yards, and none of them resulted in six points. See Week 3 rankings.
Betting nugget: Rams coach Sean McVay is 10-1 outright and ATS against Arizona, including playoffs. However, Arizona is 19-9-1 ATS as an underdog under coach Kliff Kingsbury. Read more.
Moody’s pick: Cardinals 27, Rams 24
Walder’s pick: Rams 23, Cardinals 16
FPI prediction: LAR, 54.1% (by an average of 1.4 points)
Matchup must-reads: TE Hopkins suspended three games for violating the NFL’s substance abuse policy … Murray’s magic saves the Cardinals, but they shouldn’t have to count on it … Ramsey redeems himself after Week 1 struggles … Murray on fan who hit him: ‘No hard feelings’
4:25 p.m. ET | Fox | Spread: EVEN (42)
What to watch for: It’s a battle of bridge quarterbacks, with Seattle’s Geno Smith and Atlanta’s Marcus Mariota both playing on short-term deals that suggest their teams likely view them more as placeholders than long-term answers. While Seattle’s offense has gone six straight quarters without scoring, Smith hasn’t been the primary issue. He ranks 10th in the NFL in Total QBR — one spot ahead of Mariota. — Brady Henderson
Bold prediction: Falcons running back Cordarrelle Patterson will gain over 100 scrimmage yards. Seattle is without safety Jamal Adams and gave up more than 100 all-purpose yards to Denver’s Javonte Williams in Week 1 (108) and San Francisco’s Jeff Wilson Jr. in Week 2 (103). Patterson, who has more dual-threat capability than either Williams or Wilson, will make it three straight. — Michael Rothstein
Stat to know: Smith leads the NFL in completion percentage (81%) but has averaged the second-fewest air yards per attempt (5.2). The Falcons have allowed the fourth-worst completion percentage so far this season (71%) and the second-most completions of 10-plus air yards (15).
What to know for fantasy: Over the past decade, Atlanta rookie Drake London is one of two receivers to catch five passes for at least 70 yards in each of his first two career games. The other? Stefon Diggs. See Week 3 rankings.
Moody’s pick: Falcons 24, Seahawks 20
Walder’s pick: Falcons 24, Seahawks 13
FPI prediction: ATL, 51.1% (by an average of 0.5 points)
Matchup must-reads: Explaining Pitts’ lack of production for the Falcons … Seahawks hope unleashing Smith will halt six-quarter scoring drought … Seahawks get ‘humbling’ reality check in blowout loss to 49ers
8:20 p.m. ET | NBC | Spread: SF -1.5 (45)
What to watch for: Can first-year Broncos coach Nathaniel Hackett iron things out after a bumpy start? In last weekend’s win over the Texans, the ticket-buying faithful were so frustrated with the choppy clock management that they spent much of the fourth quarter counting down the play clock as it approached zero. Hackett said his staff met extensively this week to work out clock management issues, and it will bear watching in another nationally televised effort, especially against 49ers coach Kyle Shanahan. — Jeff Legwold
Bold prediction: The 49ers will not allow Broncos QB Russell Wilson to throw a touchdown pass. That’s no small thing, considering Wilson has tossed 37 career touchdowns against San Francisco, the most of his career against a team, and his teams are 17-4 against the Niners. But this 49ers defense has been stingy in the first two weeks, allowing just 142.5 passing yards per game and just 210 total yards per game, the best marks in the NFL. Plus, Wilson has just two TD passes this season, his fewest through two games since 2017. — Nick Wagoner
Stat to know: The 49ers have not allowed a team to reach 100 rushing yards in seven straight games, dating back to last season. It’s their longest streak since 2011 (10 straight).
Stephania Bell and Field Yates break down how fantasy managers should go forward with the injured 49ers’ running backs.
What to know for fantasy: San Francisco receiver Brandon Aiyuk led the 49ers in targets from quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo last week. In the scope of the season, that’s good news, but it might not matter in this spot. In Week 1, it took Seattle’s DK Metcalf a team-high seven targets to total just 36 receiving yards against Denver, and in Week 2, 10 targets for Houston’s Brandin Cooks netted 54 yards against the Broncos. See Week 3 rankings.
Betting nugget: Unders are 94-67-3 in prime-time games over the past four seasons (.584), including 6-1 this season. And over the past three seasons, home underdogs are 27-19 ATS in such games. Read more.
Moody’s pick: 49ers 23, Broncos 20
Walder’s pick: 49ers 23, Broncos 20
FPI prediction: DEN, 52.0% (by an average of 0.6 points)
Matchup must-reads: A heartfelt goodbye and a shocking reunion: How Garoppolo and the 49ers came together again … How running the ball could be solution to Broncos’ red zone problems … Lance out, Garoppolo in: The state of the 49ers’ quarterbacks … Broncos’ Hackett: ‘I need to do better making decisions’
What to watch for: The Cowboys have owned the Giants in recent years. Dallas has won nine of the past 10 matchups between the division rivals. But this is a different Giants team, now 2-0 under new coach Brian Daboll. And New York appears likely to get back edge rushers Kayvon Thibodeaux and Azeez Ojulari, who each missed the first two games with injuries. — Jordan Raanan
Bold prediction: Dallas running back Ezekiel Elliott will have more rushing yards than the Giants’ Saquon Barkley. Barkley currently leads the NFL in rushing with 236 yards, while Elliott has 105 yards on 25 carries in two games. But Elliott likes seeing the Giants more than Barkley likes seeing the Cowboys. Elliott has four 100-yard games (and a 90-yarder) against the Giants in 10 tries. Barkley, meanwhile, has two 100-yard efforts versus Dallas in six contests, but he has not topped 28 yards three times. — Todd Archer
Stat to know: Cooper Rush is seeking to become the second undrafted Cowboys quarterback to win his first three career starts (Jason Garrett). Giants QB Daniel Jones is just 1-3 against Dallas as a starter, his most losses to a single opponent in his career.
What to know for fantasy: Elliott has run for a touchdown in four straight games against the Giants and has racked up seven rushing scores in his past seven against the divisional rival. See Week 3 rankings.
Betting nugget: New York is 0-3 ATS as a favorite since 2020 and 4-10-1 ATS in its past 15 such games. Read more.
Moody’s pick: Cowboys 24, Giants 23
Walder’s pick: Cowboys 16, Giants 6
FPI prediction: NYG, 54.6% (by an average of 1.3 points)
Matchup must-reads: ‘Micah, keep going! Don’t stop!’ With Parsons, Cowboys’ defense leading the way … Giants aren’t afraid of failure: Daboll’s coaching mentality has New York undefeated … Giants WR Golladay: ‘I should be playing’