Week 7 Fantasy Football Forecast

Hayden Winks
Week 7

Welcome to the Fantasy Football Forecast! My goal with this weekly column is to get you actionable information as quickly as possible, regardless if you're playing season-long fantasy, DFS, or are grinding player props.  If you're just looking for fantasy football rankings and only have 10 minutes to skim through for your sit/start decisions, then head over to the "Forecast" sections below where I project each player's PPR finish based on a 12-team league. But if you want to get your research on, then I have full player breakdowns. As always, hit me up on Twitter @HaydenWinks if you have questions. 

 

Teams are listed in order of their implied points.

Page 1: LAR, BUF, SEA, GB, NYG, DAL, NE, ATL, SF

Page 2: IND, BAL, JAX, ARI, PHI, MIN, HOU, DEN, DET

Page 3: TEN, CHI, CIN, OAK, LAC, NO, NYJ, WAS, MIA

TNF: KC, DEN

Byes: CAR, CLE, PIT, TB

 

 

1. Rams (28.75, -3) @ ATL

Update: Todd Gurley is expected to play. Malcolm Brown isn't. Gurley is an RB2, but the Rams may limit his touch total after coming up injured in the only game he's seen near full-time snaps. Darrell Henderson is an awesome bench hold. 

Forecast: Jared Goff QB1/2, Todd Gurley RB2, Darrell Henderson RB4, Cooper Kupp WR1, Brandin Cooks WR2/3, Robert Woods WR2/3, Gerald Everett TE1/2, Tyler Higbee TE2

LARATL

This is pulled from my Twitter: “Last 14 games including playoffs for Jared Goff: 14 touchdowns, 15 interceptions, 6.7 yards per attempt. Goff is the definition of a system quarterback. He *needs* a good offensive line to produce. Rams are PFF's No. 31 graded pass-blocking team in 2019. They were 7th in 2018.” It’s obviously been a really bad run for Goff, but this is a get-right spot. The Falcons are dead last in adjusted sack rate and are the second-worst defense against fantasy QBs, so Goff should be able to get into a rhythm and produce top-10 numbers. … Todd Gurley and Malcolm Brown are on the injury report, and we might have to wait until Sunday to find out who is playing. If Gurley suits up, he’s an RB2 who should continue to see a modified bellcow workload. If he’s not and Brown is in, then the Rams will deploy a Brown/Darrell Henderson committee. The only thing I can say for certain is that Henderson is worth owning in season-long. The juice is there if he gets a chance at 10+ touches.  

Editor's Note: Drafting is only half the battle. Dominate all season long with our Season Pass! Use our NEW Start/Sit Tool, Trade Analyzer, Consensus Rankings, Projections and more on your way to a championship! Click here for more!

LARAY7

Goff completely tanked the Rams’ receivers last week, but this is a much easier matchup, especially for Cooper Kupp. The slot receiver is leading the NFL in targets, and the Falcons have really struggled defending slot receivers this season according to Fantasy ADHD. Kupp is a bounceback WR1. … I’m more worried about Brandin Cooks and Robert Woods in season-long. Both receivers can hit a ceiling any week, but their usage is less sticky compared to Kupp, so they are more prone to clunkers. Luckily, Cooks and Woods can beat the Falcons’ second-worst pass defense (DVOA) with ease, so both are upside WR2/3s here. The Falcons are dead last in adjusted sack rate, so Goff should find more rhythm. … Gerald Everett’s usage has been up and down, but the matchup is too friendly to not keep Everett on the TE1/2 borderline. Everett is 10th in targets at tight end. 

 

2. Bills (28.5 team total, -16.5 point spread) vs. MIA

Update: Devin Singletary and TE Tyler Kroft were left off the injury report.

Forecast: Josh Allen QB1, Frank Gore RB2/3, Devin Singletary RB2/3, John Brown WR2, Cole Beasley WR4

BUFMIA

Josh Allen’s upside is tied to his legs, his deep-ball, and his opponent. This is a week where Allen can check all boxes. Allen had rushing lines of 9-135-0 and 9-95-2 against the Dolphins last year, and this Dolphins Defense is worse in 2019. Fresh off a bye, Allen is a QB1 with upside this week. … The Bills haven’t had Devin Singletary since Week 2. That should change this week after practicing early in the week, and it’s going to be a tough touch projection since Frank Gore has handled 15.0 carries per game. This will likely be a two-back committee with Gore as the leading rusher and Singletary seeing 8+ carries and most of the pass-catching work. Given the opponent, Gore and Singletary are worthwhile gambles at the flex. 

BUFAY7

John Brown (groin) has been limited at practice this week, but he should be ready to roll for a dreamy home matchup. This is a week for Brown to get deep downfield because the Dolphins are allowing touchdowns (see red dots below) left and right on passes traveling 20+ yards downfield. Brown’s an upside WR2 with multiple weeks of 100+ air yards this season. … Cole Beasley has WR3/4 usage, but he’s only averaging 6.7 yards per target and has been held out of the end zone. Beasley’s projection can be increased in this matchup, however, so he’s in the WR4 mix. … Dawson Knox has had zero-floor TE2 usage this season and must score a touchdown to be worthwhile as a complete dart-throw streamer.

DEEP

 

 

3. Seahawks (27, -3.5) vs. BAL

Forecast: Russell Wilson QB1, Chris Carson RB1/2, Rashaad Penny RB4, Tyler Lockett WR1/2, DK Metcalf WR3/4, David Moore WR5, Luke Willson TE2

SEABAL

Russell Wilson is the QB1 overall (depending on your league settings) despite being 16th in pass attempts. He’s the MVP front-runner right now, and he gets a friendly home matchup against the Ravens who are in the bottom 35th percentile in pass defense DVOA. Wilson is obviously a top-five fantasy QB. … Chris Carson has dominated touches (26, 29, 28) in the three games since his infamous bad fumble game in Week 3. The Seahawks believe in him, and Carson’s touch projection isn’t too different with Rashaad Penny active. Carson is a volume-based low-end RB1, while Penny remains a handcuff. 

SEAAY7

Tyler Lockett’s usage has been very inconsistent, but he’s incredibly efficient (11.1 yards per target) and has immense weekly upside whenever the Seahawks pass the damn ball. Lockett is a boom-or-bust WR1/2 in a matchup against a bottom 33rd percentile defense against fantasy receivers. … DK Metcalf’s usage has also been up-and-down. Like Lockett, Metcalf can pop for a long touchdown, but he’s also due for some positive touchdown regression in the red zone since he’s caught zero of his seven inside-the-20 targets. Metcalf is an upside WR3/4. … No Will Dissly (Achilles) means more reps for Luke Willson, who is a zero-floor streamer for those in bye-week hell. He’s at least on a team projected to score 27 points. Other touchdown-dependent tight ends can’t say that. 

 

4. Packers (26.5, -6.5) vs. OAK

Update: Davante Adams is out. Coach Matt LaFleur is waiting 48 hours to see if MVS and Allison can get healthy. Allison is likely out, while MVS seems like a true game-time decision. If MVS plays, he'll be a WR3. If he can't, Lazard and Kumerow come into play. Their analysis can be found below.

Forecast: Aaron Rodgers QB1/2, Aaron Jones RB2, Jamaal Williams RB2, Marquez Valdes-Scantling (questionable) WR3, Allen Lazard WR4, Jake Kumerow WR5, Jimmy Graham (questionable) TE1/2

GBOAK

Aaron Rodgers has been a QB2 through six 2019 starts and is now 17 games removed from his last three passing touchdown performance. Rodgers is no longer elite and can’t be viewed as if he is, especially given his pass-catchers’ injuries. Luckily for Rodgers’ drafters, he gets the visiting Raiders’ bottom 20th percentile pass defense DVOA. Rodgers is on the QB1/2 borderline. … Aaron Jones followed up a four-touchdown game with a disastrous performance that included a bad fumble and a wide-open dropped touchdown. But even worse than those negative plays is Jamaal Williams’ near-even split of snaps and touches. Williams’ 39 snaps and 18 touches were more than Jones’ last week (36, 15). In a home game as 6.5-point favorites, both backs should see more than one dozen touches, making both at least RB2/3 options. If forced between the two, I’d keep Jones, who is a better player, slightly ahead of Williams. 

GBAY7

Davante Adams (toe), Marquez Valdes-Scantling (ankle, knee), Geronimo Allison (concussion, chest), and Jimmy Graham (ankle) all did not participate in practice Wednesday. Adams and Allison appear the most questionable with MVS and Graham more likely to play. If MVS is the No. 1 receiver as I expect, he’ll be a startable WR3 with quality usage (see above chart) against the Raiders’ bottom 20th percentile pass defense DVOA. … If Adams and Allison miss, Jake Kumerow and Allen Lazard will slide into bigger roles. Last week, Kumerow ran a route on 87% of Packers’ dropbacks while Lazard popped for 4-65-1 on limited routes. They are names to remember as we watch the Packers’ injury report Friday.

 

 

5. Giants (26.25, -3) vs. ARI

Update: Sterling Shepard is out, so Golden Tate climbs into the WR3 mix. Saquon Barkley and Evan Engram are set to play.

Forecast: Daniel Jones QB1/2, Saquon Barkley RB1, Golden Tate WR3, Darius Slayton WR5, Evan Engram TE1

NYGARI

Daniel Jones has three-straight games with just one touchdown, but he gets one of the best matchups imaginable against the traveling Cardinals who have allowed the third-most fantasy points to quarterbacks. Jones should also get some reinforcements back in the lineup, which elevates his floor and ceiling. Jones offers upside as a QB2. … Saquon Barkley is set to return after a full practice, and he’s an obvious elite RB1 play against Arizona. Barkley said he has full confidence in his ankle and I’d be surprised if he didn’t see approximately 20 touches in his return. 

NYGAY7

Sterling Shepard (concussion) is questionable to play. If he’s active, he’s an upside flex option given the matchup, but his volume is difficult to project since this will likely be the first game with Saquon, Golden Tate, and Evan Engram all active. In his lone game with Tate, Shepard lined up outside on 64% of his snaps after playing outside on just 35% of snaps in the three games before Tate showed up. … Tate has lined up in the slot on 82% of snaps and figures to see 5-7 targets with the other pass-catchers active this week. The matchup makes Tate a startable flex option, but he’s not someone I’m going out of the way to play because he’s admitted that he’s still building chemistry with Jones. Outside of the 64-yard touchdown, Tate is averaging 3.6 yards per target. … Evan Engram practiced in full, so he’s ready for the best fantasy matchup at the position. The Cardinals aren’t only leading the NFL in production allowed to tight ends, but their 17.0 fantasy points allowed is 5.7 more points than the Bucs who are the second-worst defense against the position. Engram is an elite TE1 with at least seven targets in every game thus far. 
 

 

6. Cowboys (26.25, -3) vs. PHI

Update: To my surprise, it now looks like Amari Cooper and Randall Cobb are on track to play. Cooper is a top-10 option despite the re-injury risk, while Michael Gallup needs to be slightly downgraded to the WR2/3 mix, especially with Philly getting back two starting corners this week. LT Tyron Smith is also expected to play, which helps Dak Prescott immensely. I've upgraded Dak to a rock-solid QB1 after dropping him to the QB1/2 borderline earlier this week.

Forecast: Dak Prescott QB1, Ezekiel Elliott RB1, Amari Cooper (questionable) WR1, Michael Gallup WR2/3, Randall Cobb (questionable) WR4, Jason Witten TE1/2

 

DALPHI

Dak Prescott has serious splits with/without LT Tyron Smith and with/without Amari Cooper (In the eight games without Cooper, Dak has averaged one passing touchdown per game). Both Smith and Cooper are very questionable this week. If they can’t suit up, Prescott’s outlook needs to be downgraded against an Eagles’ pass rush that’s graded as the sixth-best in the NFL. I’m downgrading Prescott to the QB1/2 borderline. … Ezekiel Elliott is on pace for 48 receptions after catching 77 passes last year, but Zeke could see a few more chances this week with Cooper likely sidelined and is still seeing elite usage as a runner regardless. Elliott is on pace for 301 carries, 1,309 rushing yards, and 13.3 rushing touchdowns. This week’s matchup with an injured offensive line isn’t ideal, but he’s being fed too much to drop outside of the top-four at the position. 

DALAY7

Amari Cooper (quad) and Randall Cobb (back) look unlikely to play Week 7. Michael Gallup has WR2 usage in his four healthy games and should take advantage of the Eagles’ secondary that’s allowed the most points to fantasy receivers. I’m not viewing CBs Ronald Darby and Jalen Mills’ projected return to the Eagles’ starting defensive lineup as much of a difference to Gallup’s projection. He’s an upside WR2. … Devin Smith (questionable) would slide into Cooper’s spot if he’s healthy. If not, it will be Cedrick Wilson, who is a raw 2018 sixth-rounder with average 4.55 speed. Tavon Austin projects to slide into the slot if Cobb is out. All of the replacements are zero-floor dart throws. I anticipated most of the passing volume to flow through Gallup, Zeke, and Jason Witten. … Witten’s usage has increased in every single week of the year (see above chart), a trend that may have to continue this week as well given the injuries. Witten is a volume-based TE1/2 play.

 

 

7. Patriots (26.25, -10) @ NYJ

Forecast: Tom Brady QB1/2, James White RB2/3, Sony Michel RB3, Rex Burkhead (questionable) RB4, Julian Edelman WR1, Phillip Dorsett WR3/4

NENYJ

Tom Brady had 300+ yards in 4-of-6 games, and he now faces a Jets Defense that is very average against the pass. Brady’s floor is still lower than you’d like behind a below-average offensive line, but this is a matchup with a ceiling. In Brady’s last five games against the Jets, he’s averaging 257 yards and 2.4 touchdowns, including a 306-2 game in Week 3 of this year. Brady is a low-end QB1 with the Patriots’ 26.25 projected points. … James White is averaging 6.2 receptions per game, but that’s been slightly boosted with Rex Burkhead’s two-game absence. Burkhead has been limited at practice this week and is questionable for Week 7. Burkhead’s status will alter White’s and Sony Michel’s outlooks. I’d be a lot more comfortable with White in the flex if Burkhead was still sidelined.  … Michel is 37th of 38 in PFF’s elusiveness rating, avoiding just eight tackles on 100 carries. Michel’s biggest issues, however, aren’t his inability to make a defender miss, but rather his 1.0 receptions per game and 29% team share of inside-the-five carries. If Michel isn’t scoring touchdowns, he’s nearly worthless in fantasy. Michel is a touchdown-dependent flex option if Burkhead is out. I’d try to find a replacement for Michel if Burkhead is active. 

NEAY7

Julian Edelman is coming off his best game of the season, which coincided with Josh Gordon’s knee injury, one that is likely to keep Gordon on the sidelines for Week 7. Edelman just torched the Jets for a 7-62-1 game in Week 3 and is a locked-in WR1. … Phillip Dorsett is shaping up as an upside flex option now that he’s getting in reps at practice. Dorsett saw seven and nine targets in his last two healthy games and is likely going to be the Patriots’ No. 2 receiver with Gordon on the wrong side of questionable. The Jets are in the bottom 12th percentile at preventing 20+ yard gains through the air. … The Patriots are using their tight ends as pass catchers as little as possible. 

 

 

8. Falcons (25.25, +3) vs. LAR

Forecast: Matt Ryan QB1, Devonta Freeman RB2, Julio Jones WR1, Calvin Ridley WR2, Mohamed Sanu WR4, Austin Hooper TE1

ATLLAR

The Falcons can’t play defense and have struggled to run the ball. That’s led to Matt Ryan leading the NFL in pass attempts (43 per game). Matty Ice is still really efficient, too -- he’s top-10 in YPA (7.8) and TD% (5.8). The Rams’ defense isn’t a matchup to be scared of either, so Ryan should extend his six-game streak of 300+ yards. He’s a top-five fantasy QB. … Last week, Devonta Freeman out-snapped Ito Smith, 48-18, and had a season-high 22 touches. There are still major questions surrounding the Falcons’ offensive line (20th in PFF’s team run-blocking grade), the game script Freeman will have with the Falcons constantly trailing, and with Freeman himself (37th of 38 in PFF run grade), but Week 6 was encouraging. Freeman is due for some positive rushing touchdown regression, and Vegas projects Atlanta to score 25.25 points. Freeman is a more secure RB2 in Week 7 than he’s been all year long. 

ATLAY7

Julio Jones will, unfortunately, be getting the Jalen Ramsey treatment, but he’s far too talented and seeing far too much usage to drop Jones lower than the top-eight at the position, especially since this game has the highest over/under of the week (54.5). … Calvin Ridley is a prime receiver to buy in DFS tournaments this week. Ridley’s WR2/3 usage has been awesome in all non-zone matchups this season, and he should see an extra target or two with Ramsey on Julio (Ridley gets CB Troy Hill). But to top it all off, his splits with a high Vegas over/under are awesome (see splits in Tweet below). Ridley is an upside WR2. … Mohamed Sanu also benefits with Ramsey on Jones. Sanu’s 4-7 targets per game put him on the WR4 map for all the reasons I’ve laid out above. … Austin Hooper is fantasy’s TE1 overall. His usage is elite and there’s not a real reason to expect that to change this week. The Rams don’t have the linebackers or safeties to knock Hooper outside of the top-five at the position this week. 

 

 

9. 49ers (25.25, -9.5) @ WAS

Update: Deebo Samuel is out. Dante Pettis and Marquise Goodwin are still WR5s.

Forecast: Jimmy Garoppolo QB2, Tevin Coleman RB2, Matt Breida RB3, Dante Pettis WR5, Marquise Goodwin WR5, George Kittle TE1

SFWAS

Jimmy Garoppolo doesn’t have a 300-yard passing game yet with the 49ers passing the ball fewer times per game than any team in the NFL outside of the Vikings. Jimmy G’s ceiling and floor are low because of that, although the Redskins’ non-existent defense is an opportunity for some time of ceiling. Garoppolo is a QB2 this week. … Just look at the RB Fantasy Points Per Game bars for the 49ers and Redskins. Tevin Coleman is the 1A to Matt Breida’s 1B. Coleman had 18 carries and two receptions last week, with Breida seeing 13 and three. Coleman will also see most of the goal-line work, making him an upside RB2. Breida is a playable flex option with less bankable volume, especially near the goal-line, than Coleman. 

SFAY7

None of the 49ers receivers have broken out. Only Deebo Samuel has reached the “10 PPR Expected” threshold based on air yards in a game this season, and he barely did so. Samuel, Marquise Goodwin, and Dante Pettis are touchdown-or-bust WR5s, even in a plus matchup. … I’ve pointed this out a few times, but here I go again. Last season, George Kittle’s usage was elite (very elite) when the 49ers were trailing but very forgettable when the 49ers were playing with a lead (see the image in the Tweet below). Vegas has the Niners as 9.5-point favorites. Kittle is still very much a top-five tight end, but not one I’d pay a premium for in DFS tournaments. 

Week 7

Teams are listed in order of their implied points.

Page 1: LAR, BUF, SEA, GB, NYG, DAL, NE, ATL, SF

Page 2: IND, BAL, JAX, ARI, PHI, MIN, HOU, DEN, DET

Page 3: TEN, CHI, CIN, OAK, LAC, NO, NYJ, WAS, MIA

TNF: KC, DEN

Byes: CAR, CLE, PIT, TB

 

 

10. Colts (24, -1) vs. HOU 

Forecast: Jacoby Brissett QB2, Marlon Mack RB1/2, T.Y. Hilton WR2/3, Eric Ebron TE2, Jack Doyle TE2/3

INDHOU

Jacoby Brissett has been very inconsistent. He has three games with fewer than 200 passing yards and two games with 265+ yards. With the Texans coming to Indy, Brissett should be projected for an above-average game. Houston is in the bottom 25th percentile against fantasy quarterbacks, and Brissett’s two best games this season were at home. Brissett has some upside as a QB2 and is one of the best bye-week streamers. … Marlon Mack’s lack of receiving work (1.4 receptions per game) puts him at risk of falling out of the game plan, but the Colts want to give Mack the rock whenever possible. He’s averaging 20.2 carries and is due for some positive touchdown regression (470 yards to just two touchdowns). The Texans Defense has been very average thus far and the Colts are projected for 24 points, so Mack is an RB1/2. 

INDAY7

T.Y. Hilton has been targeted 3.4 yards shallower on average in 2019 than he was last season. That’s a product of the quarterback change -- the Colts are dead last in 20+ yard passing plays per game -- and it definitely lowers Hilton’s ceiling. His overall usage is that of a WR2/3, but he’s more of a low-end WR2 this week in a matchup against the Texans’ injured and backup corners. … Receiver usage beyond Hilton is far too unpredictable and too limited to rely on Zach Pascal, Deon Cain, Chester Rogers, or Parris Campbell (out) in season-long leagues. … Eric Ebron’s usage spiked a little bit with Hilton out, but he’s a touchdown-dependent TE2 with his 3-5 target projection. A similar but slightly worse story can be told about Jack Doyle

 

 

11. Ravens (23.5, +3.5) @ SEA

Forecast: Lamar Jackson QB1, Mark Ingram RB2, Gus Edwards RB4, Miles Boykin WR5, Willie Snead WR5, Mark Andrews TE1

BALSEA

Last week’s 152 rushing yard performance is just the latest accomplishment for fantasy’s QB1 overall. Lamar Jackson is running like Mike Vick -- he’s on pace for 1,227 rushing yards -- and has made a big leap as a passer from his rookie season. The Seahawks’ defense just allowed 35 yards and a rushing touchdown last week. The issues here are playing in Seattle and Marquise Brown’s very questionable status. Brown’s field-stretching ability raises Jackson’s ceiling as a passer greatly, so Jackson is not as elite of a QB1 as he has been this week. Still a top-five option.  … Mark Ingram lost snaps and touches to Gus Edwards (6 carries) and Justice Hill (5 carries) last week, but he’s still the clear-cut top member of the committee. Ingram’s six rushing touchdowns inside-the-five lead the NFL and his 12-16 carries and 1-2 receptions per game are enough to make Ingram a high-end RB2 in this run-first offense. Gus Edwards and Justice Hill are average handcuffs with minimal standalone value. 

BALAY7

Marquise Brown hasn’t practiced yet and looks unlikely to play, so it will primarily be the Mark Andrews show. Andrews was finally able to get off the injury report this week and will be heavily utilized as Jackson’s top target. It’s a noisy (largely unpredictable stat), but the Seahawks are in the bottom 10th percentile against tight end this season. Andrews is in the discussion for the TE1 overall this week. … Willie Snead and Miles Boykin are the top wide receivers with Brown gone, but neither has seen enough usage to get too excited about. Boykin’s athleticism gives him more upside than slot receiver Snead. Both are zero-floor WR5s. Perhaps Boykin is worth a stack with Jackson in large-sized DFS tournaments. 

 

 

12. Jaguars (23.25, -3) @ CIN

Update: Dede Westbrook was limited in Friday's practice and is officially questionable. I'm guessing he plays through his shoulder injury, so I'm leaving him as a WR4. Obviously he carries setback risk, so I'd try to find another option if possible.

Forecast: Gardner Minshew QB1/2, Leonard Fournette RB1, D.J. Chark WR2, Dede Westbrook (questionable) WR4, Chris Conley WR5

JAXCIN

Gardner Minshew was slowed down by a surging Saints Defense last week, but the matchup is far easier this week. The Bengals were already in the bottom 10th percentile defense against fantasy quarterbacks and will be without their best corner, Dre Kirkpatrick. Minshew is a streamable QB1/2 for those in bye-week trouble. … Leonard Fournette is third in carries (19.2 per game) and is on pace for a very nice 69 receptions. His usage is elite, but he’s not quite producing like an elite fantasy running back with the Jaguars 29th in plays per minute and 23rd in points per game. In a friendly matchup like this week’s (see chart above), it’s easier to project RB1 production for Fournette. 

JAXAY7

D.J. Chark is eighth in air yards this season and has had stable usage in every game thus far. Chark’s 12.0 yards per target is due to regress, but as long as he’s seeing 7-11 targets, Chark is a rock-solid WR2 in fantasy. The fact that the Bengals are missing multiple corners just adds to the fire. … Dede Westbrook has operated as Minshew’s check-down option underneath, which lowers his overall ceiling but keeps him in the mix as a WR4. The matchup is as good as it gets, too. … Chris Conley is a low-volume deep threat who needs a touchdown to cash. 

 

 

13. Cardinals (23.25, +3) @ NYG

Update: David Johnson and Christian Kirk are game-time decisions. Kliff Kingsbury said DJ wouldn't have played if the game were on Friday, but I'd guess he'll be out there on Sunday. Chase Edmonds has to be owned, however. Edmonds would be a plug-and-play RB1/2 if Johnson was ruled out. On the surface, Kirk seems more questionable than Johnson.

Forecast: Kyler Murray QB1, David Johnson (questionable) RB1, Chase Edmonds RB1/2, Larry Fitzgerald WR2, Christian Kirk (questionable) WR2/3, KeeSean Johnson WR5

ARINYG

Kyler Murray is stacking good-to-great games. The offense looks more complete now that Murray’s slinging the ball downfield and now that he’s running the ball (at least 27 rushing yards in four-straight games after opening the season with 13 and four yards). Murray is quietly the QB7 overall and is beginning to earn every-week QB1 treatment. There’s a decent chance Murray ends the year as a top-six fantasy quarterback. Murray is an upside QB1 play against the Giants’ bottom 12th percentile defense against fantasy quarterbacks. … David Johnson played through a back injury and ended with 12-34-1 on the ground and 6-68-1 as a receiver. DJ is essentially a fantasy WR3 who sees 10-18 carries per game. There are few paths for failure with Johnson given his rushing and receiving role, making Johnson an every-week RB1. Murray and Johnson are DFS building blocks this week. … As I mentioned in the Week 6 Recap Podcast, make sure to own Chase Edmonds if your bench is deep enough. Edmonds is an awesome fantasy handcuff.

ARIAY7

Christian Kirk is “still in the rehab” and is very questionable for Week 7. If he plays, you start him in this matchup against the Giants’ bottom 10th percentile defense against fantasy receivers. … Larry Fitzgerald will have awesome usage regardless if Kirk plays. The veteran is 14th in targets (52) and is tied for first in targets inside-the-10 (7). Those are by far the most valuable targets in fantasy (see Tweet below). Fitzgerald is an upside WR2 and a great DFS tournament option in a stack with Kyler. … The offense revolves around D.J. and the slot receivers, but KeeSean Johnson is a complete dart throw after seeing 12 targets in the last two weeks. He’s due for some positive regression after only collecting 151 yards on 31 targets this season. The rookie is a WR5. 

 

 

14. Eagles (23.25, +3) @ DAL

Forecast: Carson Wentz QB1/2, Jordan Howard RB3, Miles Sanders RB4, Alshon Jeffery WR3, Nelson Agholor WR5, Zach Ertz TE1, Dallas Goedert TE2

PHIDAL

Carson Wentz only has two completions on passes 25+ yards downfield since Week 1. He desperately needs DeSean Jackson back. Wentz is still averaging 243 yards and 2.0 touchdowns this season, but it’s a lot easier to reach a ceiling with DJax running go routes. In his last three games against the Cowboys, Wentz has posted 19.8, 25.1, and 20.0 DraftKings points. He’s a low-end QB1 regardless, but I’d be more willing to use Wentz if Jackson is healthy, which doesn’t look likely. … Jordan Howard saw 13 carries to Miles Sanders’ four last week and has now averaged 13.0 carries per game over the last four. Howard is also tied for third in inside-the-five touchdowns, giving him some weekly upside if the Eagles build a lead. Vegas doesn’t expect that to happen this week (3-point dogs), but Howard has enough volume to sit on the RB2/3 borderline. Sanders, who is 38th out of 38 in PFF’s run grades this season, has little-to-zero standalone value. 

PHIAY7

DeSean Jackson still hasn’t practiced and looks unlikely to play. Alshon Jeffery will continue to operate as the No. 1 receiver (9.7 targets per game over the last three games). Jeffery has played at his career average against the Cowboys, who are in the bottom 30th percentile in pass defense DVOA. Alshon is a fine WR2/3 with touchdown equity. … Nelson Agholor needs the Eagles to be chasing points to be involved with Alshon healthy and Vegas has this as a 3-point game. Agholor is a zero-floor WR5. … Zach Ertz is leading the position in targets and is second in air yards. The Cowboys have also been worse at defending tight ends compared to receivers this season, so Ertz is an obvious elite TE1. … Dallas Goedert is 11th in tight end targets over the last three weeks (14) and is at least attached to a capable offense if you’re looking for a tight end streamer. 

 

 

15. Vikings (23, -1) @ DET

Forecast: Kirk Cousins QB2, Dalvin Cook RB1, Adam Thielen WR1/2, Stefon Diggs WR2/3

MINDET

Kirk Cousins has found his groove recently, but they were games against the Giants and Eagles. This week’s road matchup against the Lions will be a far tougher test, and I’m betting on Cousins’ regressing with the Vikings heading back to a run-heavy approach. Cousins is a QB2. … Dalvin Cook has 18 touches in every game. When the Vikings are winning, Cook gets fed on the ground. When they’re trailing, Cook sees 5+ targets. He’s an every-week elite RB1. As a bonus, the Lions Defense is in the bottom sixth percentile against fantasy backs. 

MINAY7

LOL at Stefon Diggs’ chart. Last week was a reminder of what this passing offense can look like when they actually use their star receivers. Diggs is capable of blowup games like this, but he’s still at the mercy of the offensive philosophy. Whenever Cook gets going, Diggs can be game scripted out of favor, making him a boom-or-bust WR2/3 in most matchups. This week Diggs will go head-to-head with CB Darius Slay, who has done a good job at limiting Diggs in the last three games.Adam Thielen has been steadier than Diggs overall and his individual matchup this week is slightly easier as well. Thielen’s status as a fringe WR1/2 is unchanged by Diggs’ huge game. 

 

 

16. Texans (23, +1) @ IND

Forecast: Deshaun Watson QB1, Carlos Hyde RB2, Duke Johnson RB4, DeAndre Hopkins WR1, Will Fuller WR2/3, Kenny Stills WR5, Keke Coutee WR5, Darren Fells TE2, Jordan Akins TE2

HOUIND

Deshaun Watson is tied for fourth in passing touchdowns and is tied for sixth in rushing touchdowns. Elite production. Elite receivers. And the Texans are sixth in PFF’s pass-blocking grade. Watson is a top-five QB regardless of matchup, but it’s worth noting that the Colts’ zone defense has limited to Watson to under 20 fantasy points in back-to-back games. Even with the so-so history, Watson is an upside QB1. … Carlos Hyde had 26 carries last week and continues to make Duke Johnson a complete afterthought. Hyde has at least 10 carries in every game and is tied for eighth in inside-the-five rushing touchdowns. The Colts’ defense is in the bottom 15th percentile in run defense DVOA, so Hyde is low-end RB2, while Johnson is mainly a handcuff.

HOUAY7

DeAndre Hopkins is in a slump (58 YPG and 0 touchdowns in the last five games), but he’s a buy-low candidate given his usage and talent. Hopkins’ 56 targets are tied for fifth in the NFL and he’s still top-10 in total air yards despite a lower aDOT than normal. As you can see below, Watson has attacked the Colts’ defense underneath more so than normal, which sets up for Hopkins more than Will Fuller. Nuk is still a top-shelf WR1. … Will Fuller is extremely inconsistent. His hands are still an issue, but his usage is far from one. Fuller is second in air yards and is averaging 8.0 targets per contest. The matchup given Watson’s history against Indy lowers Fuller’s outlook, but he’s seeing too many good looks to drop too far. Fuller is a boom-or-bust WR2/3. … The emergence of tight ends Jordan Akins and Darren Fells have limited receivers Keke Coutee and Kenny Stills. Coutee has only averaged 5.0 targets in the two games without Stills, who returned to practice this week. Stills is the preferred play over Coutee, but neither are attractive options with everyone healthy. … Cannibalism is setting in for Akins and Fells, who have traded decent games in recent weeks. Overall, both of their usages aren’t bankable enough to be counted on as boom-or-bust TE2s, even against the Colts’ bottom 10th percentile defense against fantasy tight ends. 

NGSWATSON

 

 

17. Lions (22, +1) vs. MIN

Forecast: Matthew Stafford QB2, Kerryon Johnson RB1/2, Kenny Golladay WR2/3, Marvin Jones WR4, T.J. Hockenson TE2

DETMIN

Matthew Stafford has been owned by the Vikings recently. In his last four games, Stafford has 14, 11, 7, and 5 fantasy points. On top of the efficiency concerns, Stafford has to worry about play volume with both teams in favor of running the ball. Vegas agrees with the Lions’ 22-point team total. Stafford is a forgettable QB2. … Kerryon Johnson’s matchup is difficult -- look at the RB FPPG and run efficiency bars above -- but Johnson is seeing strong usage post-C.J. Anderson. In the last three games, Johnson is averaging 19.7 carries along with a few targets per game. Johnson is on the RB1/2 borderline based on projected volume. 

DETAY7

Kenny Golladay has WR1/2 usage through five games, but given Stafford’s struggles against Minnesota and the run-heavy nature of this game, the Lions’ No. 1 receiver needs to be downgraded. As you can see in my Tweet below, Minnesota is allowing almost zero completions more than 20 yards downfield, which hurts Golladay and his 13.4 average depth of target average (that’s much deeper than average if you are unfamiliar with aDOT). Golladay is a WR2/3 this week. … Similar things can be said about Marvin Jones, except he’s been seeing WR3 usage this season and isn’t as talented as Golladay in my opinion. Jones is due for some positive touchdown regression (294 yards, 1 TD), but I’ll bet on that adjusting in an easier matchup. Jones is just a flex option. … T.J. Hockenson’s air yards are basically non-existent (see above chart). He’s still a TE2 given the other options, but he’s touchdown-dependent until he’s used more often between the 20s. 

 

 

18. Titans (21, -2) vs. LAC

Forecast: Ryan Tannehill QB2/3, Derrick Henry RB1/2, A.J. Brown WR4/5, Corey Davis WR5, Delanie Walker TE1/2

TENLAC

Ryan Tannehill is drawing the start over Marcus Mariota. This is a pretty lateral move for all involved; Tannehill’s per-game averages (229 yards, 1.4 TDs, 0.8 INTs) and Mariota’s per-game averages (214 yards, 1.2 TDs, 0.7 INTs). Tannehill will be tasked with game managing and handing the ball off to Derrick Henry. The Chargers Defense is in the bottom third in both passing and rushing DVOA, but these teams are playing so slow, limiting any potential upside. … Derrick Henry is always susceptible to absolute clunkers as a touchdown-dependent RB2, but he has at least 15 carries in all six games and is tied for third in inside-the-five touchdowns (4) this year. Vegas projects positive game script for the Titans this week as 2-point favorites, and the Chargers run defense is 23rd in PFF’s team run defense grade. Henry has some touchdown upside as a high-end RB2 in Week 7.

TENAY7

Like I mentioned above, the quarterback change shouldn’t make a difference for A.J. Brown, Corey Davis, Adam Humphries, or Delanie Walker. All of the receivers are just WR5s based on early-season usage. If forced to choose a receiver, I’d take Brown, who has averaged 11.9 yards per target as a rookie. I’m very bullish on Brown the NFL player (see Tweet below). Less bullish on Brown the fantasy asset. … Delanie Walker is ninth in tight end targets. He’s right in the middle of the TE1/2 borderline group of tight ends. There’s nothing about this matchup against the Bolts that changes his outlook.

Week 7

Teams are listed in order of their implied points.

Page 1: LAR, BUF, SEA, GB, NYG, DAL, NE, ATL, SF

Page 2: IND, BAL, JAX, ARI, PHI, MIN, HOU, DEN, DET

Page 3: TEN, CHI, CIN, OAK, LAC, NO, NYJ, WAS, MIA

TNF: KC, DEN

Byes: CAR, CLE, PIT, TB

 

 

19. Bears (21, -3.5) vs. NO

Update: Mitchell Trubisky practiced fully all week but was listed as questionable on the final injury report. Really odd. Taylor Gabriel is set to return from his concussion.

Forecast: Mitchell Trubisky (questionable) QB2/3, David Montgomery RB2/3, Tarik Cohen RB4, Allen Robinson WR3/4, Trey Burton TE2

CHINO

Mitchell Trubisky has practiced in full and is expected to start. Before his shoulder injury, Trubisky was straight up one of the worst quarterbacks in the NFL (5.5 YPA). Outside of a few random huge fantasy lines last year, Trubisky has been useless in fantasy. The Saints’ defense has been vastly improved in recent weeks (we can ignore that low QB FPPG ranking for New Orleans now), getting pressure on opposing quarterbacks at a top 20th percentile rate. Trubisky is a low-floor QB2/3. … David Montgomery is only averaging 3.3 yards per carry behind the Bears’ 30th graded run-blocking line (PFF), but he’s seeing startable volume (18, 13, 21, and 11 carries) over the last four games. This week’s matchup against the Saints’ top 15th percentile defense against fantasy running backs is not an easy one, and Vegas projects the Bears to only score 21 points. Montgomery is a more of an RB3 than RB2. 

CHIAY7

Allen Robinson has WR2/3 usage, but he was more effective with Chase Daniel as his quarterback. Still, Robinson is talented enough to overcome bad quarterback play to some extent. His other issue is Marshon Lattimore, who has held Mike Evans, Amari Cooper, and D.J. Chark to just 97 scoreless yards in the last three weeks. I’m downgrading A-Rob to the WR3/4 range this week. … Taylor Gabriel is expected to play, but he’s too low-volume to be counted on despite that random three-touchdown game. Gabriel’s return is obviously terrible news for Tarik Cohen, Anthony Miller, and Javon Wims. … Trey Burton has 11 receptions and zero touchdowns in four games.
 

 

20. Bengals (20.25, +3) vs. JAX

Forecast: Andy Dalton QB2/3, Joe Mixon RB2, Tyler Boyd WR2, Auden Tate WR4

CINJAX

The Bengals Offense is broken. They lost another offensive lineman last week, and Dalton is still without A.J. Green and John Ross. It’s tough for Dalton to reach a ceiling with these teammates, as highlighted by his three passing touchdowns in the last four games. Dalton is, at best, a low-end QB2. … Joe Mixon is averaging just 42.0 rushing yards and 2.3 receptions per game, and he’s still without a rushing touchdown. The Bengals can’t run the ball behind their 22nd-ranked run-blocking line (PFF) and Mixon’s fantasy outlook is poor because of it. This week, however, should be a decent game against the worst run defense DVOA. Mixon is a low-end RB2.

CINAY7

Tyler Boyd was shut down by Ravens CB Marlon Humphrey last week, but that was an outlier game amongst a streak of consistent performances. Boyd still has WR2 usage given the A.J. Green and John Ross injuries. His matchup against the Jalen Ramsey-less Jaguars is favorable, and I’m projecting a bounceback game. … Auden Tate was the focal point of the offense last week. Dalton was forcing 50/50 throws to Tate along the sideline to moderate success. I’m expecting those targets and air yards to regress back to his previous totals (see above chart), making Tate a bye-week flex option. … Tyler Eifert has fewer than 30 yards in each game and is in the middle of trade talks. He’s not an option.

 

 

21. Raiders (20, +6.5) @ GB 

Update: Tyrell Williams is out. There's not a receiver I'm targeting on the Raiders. Darren Waller and Josh Jacobs should see awesome volume this week, however.

Forecast: Derek Carr QB2/3, Josh Jacobs RB2, Darren Waller TE1

OAKGB

Through five weeks, Derek Carr is without a 260+ yard game and is only averaging 1.2 touchdowns. The Raiders want to run the ball when they can, and that’s exactly what the offensive game plan should be in Green Bay given the Packers’ run funnel defense (see above chart). Carr is a QB2/3. … Josh Jacobs is game-script dependent. As shown by the chart in the link, Jacobs sees approximately 25% of the Raiders’ touches when the Raiders are trailing. Coach Jon Gruden has opted to limit Jacobs’ receiving work (6 receptions in 5 games), so he’s a boom-or-bust RB2. Hopefully the Raiders can keep this one close, but Vegas has the Raiders as 6.5-point dogs. 

OAKAY7

Tyrell Williams is very questionable with a plantar fascia problem in his foot. If he’s active, Williams carries injury risk on top of his difficult road matchup against the Packers’ boundary corners Kevin King (potential shadow) and Jaire Alexander. Williams is a WR4 in the event he gets cleared in time. … Trevor Davis and slow/old rookie Hunter Renfrow are the next options at receiver for Carr. Both are uninspiring dart throws if Williams is out. … Darren Waller is the pass-catcher to buy even more of if Williams’ injury lingers. Waller has at least seven targets in 4-of-5 games with the only clunker occurring when the Raiders jumped to a big early lead in London. Waller’s TE1 usage and TE1 talent make him a no-brainer top-eight option every-week. 
 

 

22. Chargers (19, +2) @ TEN

Forecast: Philip Rivers QB2, Melvin Gordon RB2, Austin Ekeler RB3, Keenan Allen WR1/2, Mike Williams WR3, Hunter Henry TE1

LACTEN

PFF has the Bolts as the No. 26 pass-blocking team through six weeks and that will likely get worse with Pro Bowl C Mike Pouncey on injured reserve. Since Pouncey’s been gone, the Chargers have scored 13 and 17 points in “home” games. The good news for Philip Rivers is his top-five pass attempt ranking (39.6 per game), but he’ll now have to figure out how to right the ship against the Titans, who are in the top 25th percentile against fantasy quarterbacks. Rivers is a QB2. … With the Chargers trailing in both games since he’s been active, we haven’t seen what a normal game looks like for Melvin Gordon. He’s averaging 10 carries and 3.5 receptions, but I can confidently project MGIII for more carries whenever the Chargers are in close games. And it was a good sign for Melvin owners that he still out-snapped Austin Ekeler, 37-28, in Week 6 when the Chargers were losing. Gordon is looking like the better back to own moving forward as an upside RB2, while Ekeler is a RB3 after only seeing five carries and four targets last week. 

LACAY7

When I build these air yards charts every week, there are a few pass-catchers whose usage jumps off the page. Mike Williams’ usage certainly qualifies. His air yards and targets have been elite in three-straight healthy games. Despite the usage, Williams has managed zero 75-yard games and zero touchdowns in 2019 while playing through multiple injuries, including a scary back injury. Williams has upside given his usage and talent (when healthy) as a higher-end WR3. … Keenan Allen’s usage has gone in the opposite direction, partially because of individual matchup and partially because of randomness. Allen’s projected usage is somewhere between Weeks 1-3 and Weeks 4-6 (see above chart), making Keenan a fringe WR1/2 every week now that Hunter Henry and Melvin Gordon will steal some usage away from him. … Hunter Henry returned from injury to see elite TE1 usage (9 targets) last week. His target total will come down with the Chargers unlikely to pass 44 times as they did against Pittsburgh in Week 6, but Henry is squarely in the top-eight at the position moving forward. The Titans are in the bottom 25th percentile against fantasy tight ends as a bonus. 

 

 

23. Saints (17.5, +3.5) @ CHI

Update: Alvin KamaraJared Cook, and Tre'Quan Smith are out. Latavius Murray is a volume-based RB2 in a tough matchup. Michael Thomas will be force-fed targets, too.

Forecast: Teddy Bridgewater QB3, Latavius Murray RB2, Michael Thomas WR1, Ted Ginn WR5

NOCHI

Teddy Bridgewater is only averaging 231 yards and 1.8 touchdowns in starts with the Saints playing keep away on offense. He’s barely a streamer in decent matchups and is an easy fade against the Bears who are in the top 15th percentile against fantasy quarterbacks. … Alvin Kamara was clearly limited by his ankle injury last week, which led to season-highs in carries (8) and receptions (3) for Latavius Murray and a season-low 11 carries for Kamara. If Kamara proves he’s healthier with a full participation in practice Friday, I’d be more confident calling him an RB1 this week. If he’s still limited, I’ll be knocking him down to the upside RB2 range with volume and efficiency as concerns. 

NOAY7

Michael Thomas is second in targets as the focal point of the offense, especially with Alvin Kamara (ankle) banged up. Thomas deserves the WR1 label based on volume, but this isn’t a matchup to expect a ceiling with the Bears' defense almost exclusively funnels receptions within 10 yards of the line of scrimmage (see my Tweet below). … Ted Ginn remains a zero-floor deep threat attached to a quarterback with below-average arm strength. … Jared Cook has TE1/2 usage and Chicago isn’t a matchup to expect different results. 
 

 

24. Jets (16.25, +10) vs. NE

Forecast: Sam Darnold QB2/3, Le’Veon Bell RB1/2, Jamison Crowder WR4, Robby Anderson WR4

NYJNE

Sam Darnold looked like a franchise quarterback last week in the Jets upset win over Dallas. Darnold nearly set a new career-high in passing yards (338) and had chemistry with all three of his receivers. The Patriots Defense is leading in just about every defensive statistic right now, however, making Darnold a low-end QB2 despite the positive game in his return from mono. … Le’Veon Bell is averaging 17.0 carries and 5.6 receptions per game as one of the most-utilized backs in all of fantasy. If Darnold can play as well as he did in Week 6, Bell has some serious upside. But that will likely have to be put on hold with New England in town. Bell is a volume-based RB1, who likely won’t hit a ceiling this time around.

NYJAY7

The Patriots have allowed the third-fewest fantasy points per game to receivers with Stephon Gilmore shutting down opposing ones and with the scheme limiting the rest of the pass-catchers. Robby Anderson will catch a lot of Gilmore, which makes him a zero-floor WR4 this week despite a huge Week 6 game. … I actually like Jamison Crowder more than Anderson this season. Crowder has actual chemistry with Darnold and won’t have to deal with Gilmore this week. The Patriots have almost exclusively prevented passes beyond 10ish yards this season (see Tweet below). He’s a WR4. 

 

25. Redskins (15.75, +9.5) vs. SF

Update: Chris Thompson is out.

Forecast: Case Keenum QB3, Adrian Peterson RB3, Terry McLaurin WR3

WASSF

Case Keenum mustered up just 166 yards and two touchdowns against the Dolphins last week with coach Brian Callahan running the ball more times than passing it. If that offensive approach continues, it will be very hard for Keenum to reach a ceiling high enough to start in fantasy, especially when facing the 49ers. Vegas projects Washington to score just 15.75 points. … Adrian Peterson will benefit greatly from the coaching change, as evidenced by his season-high 23 carries and 118 rushing yards last week. AP might see upwards of 15-20 carries regardless of the scoreboard under Callahan, but the 49ers are the best team defense against fantasy running backs this year. Peterson is a risky flex option in a very difficult matchup. AP’s outlook is slightly improved if Chris Thompson is out with his turf toe injury.

WASAY7

Terry McLaurin has strong WR2 usage in every game he’s played (see above chart), but he needs to be downgraded this week with the Niners’ No. 1 ranked pass DVOA defense coming to Washington. As evidenced by the 15.75 team total, the Redskins are very likely to struggle to pass, making McLaurin more of a WR3 than WR2. … Trey Quinn, Paul Richardson, and the tight ends aren’t seeing enough volume to be considered in this matchup.

 

 

26. Dolphins (12, +16.5) @ BUF

Forecast: Josh Rosen QB3, Kenyan Drake RB4, DeVante Parker WR5, Preston Williams WR5, Albert Wilson WR5

MIABUF

The Dolphins are projected for 12 points. Josh Rosen may not play a full game as he did last week. Kenyan Drake lost snaps to Mark Walton and Kalen Ballage in Week 6 and can’t be in fantasy lineups. 

MIAAY7

DeVante Parker and Preston Williams were near full-time players last week with Albert Wilson and Allen Hurns splitting time inside. They’re all zero-floor dart throws in Buffalo.