In seasonal fantasy football, matchups often boil down to which owner makes the right start/sit decisions. You can’t hold allegiances to projections or name recognition, you simply have to play the guys you think will wind up with the most fantasy points.
Here are the fringe options that might / should be in your fantasy lineup in Week 7.
Week 7 Start ‘Em
QB Joe Flacco vs. NO
Even on the road against an elite defense, you can trust that the Saints will be able to score points this Sunday. That should force Joe Flacco, who has attempted the second-most passes amongst QBs this season, to continue to air it out. The Saints rank 30th in DVOA pass defense and first in DVOA against the run, while the Ravens rank 21st in DVOA rush offense. With top CB Marshon Lattimore (concussion) missing practice time and slot CB Patrick Robinson (ankle) done for the year, the Saints are ill-equipped to deal with the Ravens improved receiving corps. John Brown will continue to open things up underneath, and Willie Snead IV could have a solid day against his former team as Flacco likely produces 18-plus FPs in this plus matchup.
RB Kenyan Drake vs. DET
Frank Gore continues to eat into his workload, but Kenyan Drake is worth a start this week against Detroit’s 30th ranked defense. The Lions allow the third-most rushing YPG (145.8), and they’re aggressive blitzing style leaves them vulnerable to screen passes. Drake caught 4-of-6 targets for 21 yards and rushed for 57 yards while handling his most touches (17) of the season last week. He lost a costly fumble but was also interfered with on what could’ve been a long reception in overtime. Stick with the talented back for at least one more week, as Brock Osweiler seems more likely to check down to Drake than Ryan Tannehill (shoulder), who is out this week.
RB Bilal Powell vs. MIN
Isaiah Crowell (knee, foot) managed to play in Week 6 but was largely ineffective. He’s been missing practice time leading up to a tough matchup against Minnesota and game flow could dictate a more pass-heavy approach regardless. Bilal Powell is averaging 10.5 yards per reception on ten catches this season and is churning out 4.3 YPC for a second consecutive season. The Vikings have allowed 2 receiving TD s to opposing backs this season and rank dead last in DVOA pass defense against the position.
WR Sammy Watkins vs. CIN
The Chiefs and Bengals Sunday night tilt has been assigned with the highest Over/Under (58.5) of the slate and there are plenty of options to consider on both sides. Sammy Watkins may get overlooked after Tyreek Hill’s big three-TD performance in Week 6, but he’s a quality start and could even outproduce Hill in this matchup. The Bengals rank 20th in DVOA pass defense and have allowed the sixth-most receiving yards (1,105) to opposing WRs this season. Cincy also lost CB Darqueze Dennard (shoulder) and could struggle against the Chiefs second and third receivers while throwing extra coverage towards Hill and Travis Kelce.
WR Chris Godwin vs. CLE
The Bucs are moving in a youthful direction with Jameis Winston starting over Ryan Fitzpatrick and are beginning to get their second-year WR involved more often. Chris Godwin caught 6-of-9 passes for 56 yards in a plus matchup at Atlanta last week and has now caught a TD in four of his five appearances this season. The Browns rank 26th in non-adjusted DVOA pass defense and have given up the fifth-most receiving yards to WRs (1,141) this season. Cleveland’s ability to contain the big pass should lead to less production from DeSean Jackson and potentially more from Godwin.
TE C.J. Uzomah @ KC
Continue to hammer the Sunday night game with a solid play from the Bengals side. Tyler Eifert and Tyler Kroft are both out indefinitely, and Uzomah’s been limited in practice with a shoulder, but should be ready for a Week 7 tilt against arguably the NFL’s most generous defense. It’s inarguable that the Chiefs have allowed the most receiving yards (550) and fourth-most receptions (36) to opposing TEs this season. John Ross (groin) could miss this contest, and even if he plays, Uzomah should soak up underneath targets against an aggressive Chiefs defense. He’s a good bet for production in PPR formats.