Binding of the Fc portion of IgG coated on targets to Fcgamma receptors (e.g., CD16) expressed on leukocytes (i.e., 2D binding) is an initiating step for immune responses such as phagocytosis or antibody-dependent cellular cytotoxicity. In vivo, circulating leukocytes are exposed to plasma IgG. The competition from soluble IgG (i.e., 3D binding) may affect the 2D binding. Many cell surface receptors, CD16 included, have soluble counterparts. While their physiological significance is not clear, receptor-based competitive inhibition therapy, in which soluble receptors, ligands, and their analogs are employed to compete with surface-bound receptors and ligands to prevent unwanted adhesion, is widely used to treat various diseases. To provide a quantitative basis for design of these therapeutic approaches, we developed a mathematical model for 2D and 3D competition binding. The model relates cell-surface adhesion (in the presence and absence of dislodging forces) to the concentration of the soluble competitor, the densities of the surface-bound receptors and ligands, as well as the binding affinities of the 2D and 3D interactions. Binding of CD16-expressing cells to an IgG-coated surface in the presence of a soluble competitor (IgG or anti-CD16 antibody) was quantified by a centrifugation assay. The agreement between experiment and theory supports the validity of the model, which could be useful in predicting the efficacy of the competitor.