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2018 Week 7 Start_Sit: Breakout Candidates

week 7 start_sit
Leticia Samuels

It was a cool, crisp October night as I sat in my room writing the Week 7 Start_Sit article. Then it occurred to me that this week has the most teams on a bye. Pittsburgh, Green Bay, Oakland, and Seattle are all out this week. With QB’s Aaron Rodgers, David Carr, Ben Roethlisberger, and Russell Wilson all out, there will be a scramble to grab a few QBs on the Waiver Wire.

When you look back at the Week 6 games, it shows there isn’t an “easy” matchup or a predictable game. Jacksonville and Chicago had favorable games for their defenses, but that wasn’t the case at the end of the day.

Selecting players every week for Start_Sit is just getting more complicated due to injuries, bye weeks, and the returns of players. Dalvin Cook, T.Y. Hilton, Leonard Fournette, and Le’Veon Bell are just some of the big names expected to return in the coming weeks. The biggest controversy will be what happens when Bell returns.

We’re halfway to Week 14 when most Fantasy playoffs start. I have to be more accurate with my Start_Sit because of every week matters. People who are 2-5 still have a chance to make a run for the playoffs. Not only am I focused on making a run to win my championship, but I want you guys to make a run to win your championships, too.

Week 7 Start_Sit

Start

Quarterbacks

Mitchell Trubisky, Chicago Bears vs New England Patriots

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As I stated in my introduction, Aaron Rodgers, Big Ben, and Russell Wilson are all out this week and you could be searching for a new QB. These last two games for him have been phenomenal with nine touchdowns to one interception. This week he gets a matchup against the Patriots who have been struggling as of late in the secondary. He has shown in Weeks 4 and 6 that he isn’t afraid to throw the ball. Not to mention that his floor is higher than some other QBs because of his rushing ability. In my opinion, he is a low-end QB1 in Week 7.

Andy Dalton, Cincinnati Bengals  at Kansas City Chiefs

A surprising stat about Dalton is he has two or more touchdowns in six out of the seven games this season. There is a high chance this game turns into an aerial battle. We have come to expect those type of games when opposing teams face Kansas City. Philip Rivers (3), Ben Roethlisberger (1), Jimmy Garoppolo, tore his ACL in the fourth quarter (11), Case Keenum (27), Blake Bortles (10), and Tom Brady (11). Those are the QBs and their Fantasy finishes when they have faced off against the Chiefs defense this season.

 

Running Backs

Tarik Cohen, Chicago Bears vs New England Patriots

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It is becoming more clear that Tarik Cohen is going to be a thorn in the side of all Jordan Howard owners. The skill that Cohen posses in the passing game is what separates him from Howard. In Weeks 5 and 6, he has out-touched Howard 32-to-25. For Cohen, 14 of his 32 touches were receptions and that boosts his value in PPR formats. This week against New England, Tarik is a low-end RB2 or a strong Flex option.

Phillip Lindsay, Denver Broncos at Arizona Cardinals

Arizona has had a difficult time stopping the run all season and this could be a breakout game for Lindsay. Week after week, Philip proves to be the better draft pick over Royce Freeman. Freeman has only rushed for more yards than Lindsay in two games. He only has one game with more catches than Lindsay, too. This was primarily due to Lindsay being ejected against the Ravens. The Cardinals are one of the two worst teams against the run and that makes Lindsay have Top 15 upside.

 

Wide Receivers

Tyler Boyd, Cincinnati Bengals at Kansas City

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After last week’s performance, Boyd has cemented himself as an every week starter. With the losses of Tyler Eifert, John Ross, and Gio Bernard, his targets have increased. Since Week 2, Boyd has 47 targets. He has proven to be a serious breakout WR in 2018. You can expect him to continue his breakout season against the Chiefs who are allowing 357 passing yards per game.

Sterling Shepard, New York Giants at Atlanta Falcons

Eli Manning could possibly bounce back this week and that has a chain reaction for all the Giants offensive weapons. I don’t care what people say about Eli, he is still a good QB, but behind that putrid offensive line, it makes his life hell. The reason the Falcons are struggling this season is primarily due to their decimated defense. Shepard, Odell Beckham Jr., and Saquon Barkley should all have productive games. Heed this warning, a solid Fantasy game from Sterling is on Manning’s shoulders.

 

Tight Ends

Greg Olsen, Carolina Panthers at Philadelphia Eagles

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Now that a former seventh-floor crew member is back for the Panthers, he has to be in your lineup. In his first game back since Week 1, Olsen had 48 receiving yards on four catches. The two big takeaways from that game are that he was targeted the second most with seven. The other takeaway and probably his biggest one is he seems healthy. If Olsen is fully recovered, there is nothing to stop him from being a Top 5 TE the rest of the season.

David Njoku, Cleveland Browns at Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Just like I said last week, if he scored a touchdown he would be a Top 5 TE and he did just that (TE2 in Half-PPR formats) with a TD and double-digit targets (second straight week). In Week 7, Njoku gets an amazing matchup with Tampa Bay. David’s large frame makes him a red zone threat and he should have no problem getting more touchdowns as the season progresses.

 

Defenses

Houston Texans at Jacksonville Jaguars

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Why not take advantage of a struggling Jacksonville offense? Houston has two or more sacks in five of six games in 2018. Blake Bortles has been nothing short of awful these last two games. Most of his yardage in the Kansas City game was in garbage time. The only game he doesn’t have an interception in is against New England. This defense could have an even better matchup if Leonard Fournette is out again.

Los Angeles Chargers vs Tennessee Titans

After allowing 11 sacks to the Ravens in Week 6, I would start the Chargers this week. The last two games, Tennessee has a total of 12 points. It is unclear of the reason, but why not capitalize on it. Los Angeles has started to figure out their pass rush even with Joey Bosa out. This defense is tied for fifth in the NFL with 16 sacks. If Tennessee stays in a slump, the Chargers can be a Top 5 defense this week.

 

Sit

Quarterbacks

Dak Prescott, Dallas Cowboys at Washington Redskins

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Don’t get fooled by the Week 6 performance. This week, the Cowboys are on the road where they are 0-3. Dak, in particular, isn’t a QB you want to start when he’s on the road. He averages 182 passing yards per road game and he has only two touchdowns to four interceptions. The lack of receiving weapons has severally crippled the Cowboys and Prescott this season. Even with four big QBs on a bye, I would advise staying away from Dak.

Blake Bortles, Jacksonville Jaguars vs Houston Texans

If Bortles doesn’t get some garbage time yardage then his Fantasy value is crippled. Half of the games this season he has thrown for less than 200 yards. Not to mention his eight interceptions. Bortles may have Leonard Fournette back this week, but that might not matter. Fournette tried to play a few weeks ago and he wasn’t 100% healthy, so he exited early. Bortles isn’t even worth a streaming option at this point.

Running Backs

Isaiah Crowell, New York Jets vs Minnesota Vikings

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Is the risk really worth the reward with Crowell? I have three good reasons why you should keep Crowell on your bench in Week 7. First, he’s facing off against Minnesota, a Top 3 run defense. Second, he did not practice on Wednesday due to a foot injury. Lastly, in four games this season, he has less than 40 rushing yards. More often than not, Crowell struggles and splitting time with Bilal Powell doesn’t make it easier.

Kenyan Drake, Miami Dolphins vs Detroit Lions

I’m not sure what Adam Gase is doing. It is looking more and more like Frank Gore will be the primary back, but Drake’s usage will be more as a receiver out of the backfield. Gore got two more carries than Drake last week, but out rushed him by 44 yards. Kenyan could be in the doghouse after his almost game costing fumble on the one-yard line.

 

Wide Receivers

Corey Davis, Tennessee Titans at Los Angeles Chargers

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Since Davis is the only weapon for Tennessee, it makes it easy for defenses to key on him. The Titans’ offense has been just bad, there are no other words to describe it. The running game is nonexistent, Corey Davis is the only receiver, and Marcus Mariota continues to be a disappointment. All of this adds to Davis’s second-year slump.

Nelson Agholor, Philadelphia Eagles vs Carolina Panthers

You can look back at his Week 6 game and see he totaled 91 yards on three catches. The one key thing to know is that he gathered 90 yards on two catches. His 91 receiving yards are a season-high and Carson Wentz’s return has crippled Agholor’s upside. Since Carson Wentz came back, Nelson has five or fewer targets in three of four games.

 

Tight Ends

Benjamin Watson, New Orleans Saints at Baltimore Ravens

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The Saints will face off against Baltimore and Watson could have a tough day ahead. He was a Raven in 2017 and Baltimore could have insight into Watson’s weaknesses. Mark Ingram’s return means even fewer targets for Watson now. Alvin Kamara will be used more as a pass catcher and Tre’Quan Smith and Cameron Meredith are starting to emerge. Watson’s targets are continuing to fall and so is his Fantasy value.

Cameron Brate, Tampa Bay Buccaneers vs Cleveland Browns

His day was saved by a touchdown and that happened to be his lone reception of the game. Now that O.J. Howard is recovered from his sprained MCL, that means Brate is back to the bench. Howard is clearly the starter and Brate barely gets yardage. most yards this season is 34 and unless he scores a TD, his Fantasy value is zero.

 

Defenses

Atlanta Falcons vs New York Giants

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Even against the Giants, I would still sit Atlanta’s defense. There are just too many injuries for the Falcons to overcome. Both starting safeties and middle linebacker are out for the season. Since Week 2 they are allowing almost 35 points per game. Needless to say, the Giants could have a breakout game against the Falcons’ injury-plagued team.

Carolina Panthers vs Philadelphia Eagles

Carolina’s secondary is not trustworthy and Carson Wentz is starting to take his MVP candidate form. In the last four games, the Panthers are allowing 26 points per game. A fun, but startling statistic about this defense is that six of their 12 sacks came in one game. This is proof that Carolina is having a tough time getting to the QB.

Leticia Samuels

Conlin Postma

Fantasy Football Writer at So Called Fantasy Experts
An aspiring Fantasy Football Analyst, a member of the #RavensFlock, and the biggest Tyrod Taylor fan you'll meet.

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