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Favorites & Fades

Week 7

By: Nick Caron | HC Green | Eli Mack | John Fessel
Updated: 10/22/23



Sunday Early:



Sunday Late:





- Green highlight indicates plus matchup (top eight)
- Red highlight indicates negative matchup (bottom eight)
- Lines and totals updated Sunday morning

Jaguars @ Saints - (Mack)
Line: NO -2.5
Total: 40.5

NO FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.26
NO FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.31
NO FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.21
NO FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.27

No Brainers: N/A

Favorites: RB Travis Etienne

Through six games, Travis Etienne has already matched his rushing TD total (five) from 2022, including four the last two games. And his seven total receptions in those two contests confirm that he’s well established in Jacksonville’s offensive gameplan on a weekly basis. The Tank Bigsby boogeyman that some predicted would make an appearance in 2023 to limit Etienne’s ceiling has yet to surface, so Etienne should continue being the primary back for the foreseeable future. Etienne has 82 percent of the RB carries through six weeks. Whether or not that kind of domination continues into the second half of the season remains to be seen. But for now, let’s enjoy the chokehold Etienne has on this backfield, as that’s becoming less and less a thing in the league.

But while Etienne is a bona fide RB1 this week, we must acknowledge that he will be facing one of the toughest defenses in the league. The Saints are ninth against the run and have only given up one rushing TD this season. So, while Etienne is an unquestioned RB1, don’t be shocked if his numbers are limited compared to the two previous games.

On the Fence: QB Trevor Lawrence (knee), WR Calvin Ridley, WR Christian Kirk, TE Evan Engram

We were told that Trevor Lawrence was a generational QB ever since his sophomore year at Clemson when he tossed 36 TDs as a 20-year-old. Fast-forward four years and there’s been very little that’s been proven to be generational about him. He’s a middle-of-the-road QB with production and numbers to prove it. Lawrence’s seven passing TDs are only one more than Atlanta’s Desmond Ridder, someone fans and media has been clowning most of the year. Sure, Lawrence has had a game or two where we think he’s about to turn the corner, but he immediately turns back into a pumpkin. Kind of like when he threw seven TDs total over back-to-back games last year against Tennessee and Dallas, only to throw one TD total in the next three. It’s maddening having him on your fantasy roster, and now he’s battling a knee issue against a top pass defense. I’m not a fan of his lack of consistency, nor his prospects for putting up decent numbers on the road against the fifth-best pass defense that’s only allowed eight TDs through the air in six games.

Lawrence’s struggles will surely decrease the probability of Calvin Ridley, Christian Kirk, and Evan Engram doing much of anything. New Orleans has only given up more than 181 yards passing in a game twice this year, including limiting the dreadful Patriots to 111 passing yards in Week 5. Jacksonville’s passing game may frustrate those relying on its players to put up numbers on Thursday; I simply don’t like the chances of this inconsistent offense being productive. It’s a tough call to suggest benching these players—especially the receivers and tight end—but I strongly encourage you to keep those expectations in check. This could be an ugly offensive game for the Jags.

Fade: N/A

JAC FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.6
JAC FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.20
JAC FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.11
JAC FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.10

No Brainers: RB Alvin Kamara

Favorites: WR Chris Olave

After hauling in only three total catches in Weeks 4 and 5, Chris Olave rebounded nicely last week with a 7-catch, 96-yard performance on 10 targets. He now gets to face the 31st-ranked pass defense that has given up at least 310 yards through the air in each of the last two weeks. There will be numerous opportunities for Olave to shine in Week 6, as his lead-dog status in the passing game would dictate. His chances for success, of course, will depend on QB Derek Carr getting him the ball. But Carr has had his struggles leading this passing game. His five passing TDs is the lowest total of his career through a season’s first six games. Ouch. Despite Carr’s shortcomings, Olave should be productive and may even see the end zone for only the second time in 2023.

On the Fence: WR Michael Thomas

In all honesty, Michael Thomas was on my do-not-draft list this year. I simply did not have the courage to select a player who hadn’t played a full season in four years. However, through the season’s first six games, Thomas continues to make himself a startable option in most leagues as a WR3 or flex. That’s especially so this week with byes starting to affect rosters. We can expect a lot of dump-offs to Kamara, which will limit Thomas’s targets. But if you are forced to play Thomas this week, you should be okay.

Fade: WR Rashid Shaheed; QB Derek Carr (shoulder)

Rashid Shaheed has had moments this season, as he’s a big play waiting to happen. His 18.6 yards per reception is third in the league. It will take an injury to one of the top two targets for Shaheed to become a thing in fantasy. As for Carr, keep him on your bench for the reasons stated above.

Prediction: Saints 24, Jaguars 13 ^ Top

Browns @ Colts - (Mack)
Line: CLE -3.5
Total: 40.5

IND FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.7
IND FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.9
IND FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.13
IND FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.9

Update: Deshaun Watson is listed as Questionable.

No Brainers: N/A

Favorites: WR Amari Cooper, RB Jerome Ford

Amari Cooper is not known as an explosive receiver who’s capable of big plays downfield week in and week out. Yet he’s had the best season of his career so far regarding yards per catch (16.7). That’s stellar work, especially for a team’s WR1 playing without his starting quarterback. His 108 yards last week against a tough San Francisco pass defense shows that he’s a tactician running routes and can get open against anybody. Deshaun Watson (shoulder) remains iffy going into this game, although he was able to log a limited practice session on Thursday. If Watson suits up or if P.J. Walker gets another shot, it probably won’t matter much for Cooper’s prospects this week. While Indy’s defense has had moments of limiting offenses in 2023, they are susceptible to giving up big yardage days through the air. Start Cooper with confidence.

As for Jerome Ford, he’s now on the plus-side of an RBBC with Kareem Hunt. It’s been essentially a two-to-one split so far in Ford’s favor, yet he’s still carved out enough production to warrant starting consideration. The Colts have given up nine rushing TDs—only two teams are worse—so, Ford could easily find paydirt this week. He’s a good RB2 in Week 7.

On the Fence: N/A

Fade: WR Elijah Moore, RB Kareem Hunt, TE David Njoku

The Cleveland offense doesn’t have the bandwidth to support multiple fantasy options at this point, especially if Watson is sidelined. Elijah Moore, Kareem Hunt, and David Njoku are all depth players in fantasy with little value as starters. As such, all should be on your bench.

CLE FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.32
CLE FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.25
CLE FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.32
CLE FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.31

No Brainers: N/A

Favorites: WR Michael Pittman Jr.

Pittman had his best game last week against Jacksonville, hauling in nine of 14 targets for 109 yards. While he hasn’t scored since the season opener, Pittman is the unquestioned leader in the Colts’ passing game. His 60 targets are 19 more than the next closest teammate. Pittman will be challenged, however, as the Browns are the league’s toughest defense against the pass. On average, teams are only throwing for 121 yards per game against them. If the Colts are to do anything through the air, Pittman will lead the way.

On the Fence: RB Jonathan Taylor, RB Zack Moss

This Indianapolis backfield is not quite settled as to how carries will ultimately be distributed. Make no mistake, though. At some point, Jonathan Taylor will take over, but Zack Moss has been a revelation this year, and his play will continue to warrant carries. To what extent that will eat into Taylor’s potential remains to be seen, but last week’s contest saw Moss get seven carries and Taylor eight. Neither did much with those limited opportunities, but it was a glimpse into how they intend to use both, at least in the near-term. We may have to let this situation play out before providing firm intel. Meanwhile, proceed with caution in this backfield.

Fade: WR Josh Downs, QB Gardner Minshew

I’m a fan of Josh Downs. I think he’s someone to stash on your roster with the hopes that he breaks out this season. At this point, though, he’s a bye-week filler or injury replacement. Same deal with Gardner Minshew. He posted more than 300 yards passing last week but turned it over three times. Cleveland will present his toughest test so far this season. Keep him on your bench.

Prediction: Browns 23, Colts 16 ^ Top

Bills @ Patriots - (Caron)
Line: BUF -8.0
Total: 40.5

NE FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.28
NE FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.14
NE FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.18
NE FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.22

No Brainers: QB Josh Allen, WR Stefon Diggs

Favorites: RB James Cook

James Cook had just eight touches (five carries) in the Bills’ Week 5 loss to the Jaguars but bounced back with a 15-touch game in their Week 6 win over the Giants. Backup Latavius Murray also got 12 touches, so the touch distribution might have fantasy managers a bit worried, though this has been the case throughout most of the season and Cook has continued to put up solid RB2 numbers most weeks despite having scored just one touchdown on the season thus far. Cook has touched the ball between 13 times and 21 times in five of Buffalo’s first six games.

Buffalo’s offense has been struggling a bit over the past two weeks, scoring just 34 points over those games. They now face a middle-of-the-road run defense, but an offense of their own that has scored just 35 points over their past four games combined. There’s very little chance that the Bills get away from their run game, which should give Cook a solid floor. The Saints and Raiders combined for 62 running back rush attempts against the Patriots over the past two weeks, totaling 289 yards.

On the Fence: WR Gabriel Davis

Even without standout rookie cornerback Christian Gonzalez, the Patriots did an amazing job of taking away both Chris Olave and Davante Adams over their past two games. Olave had two catches for 12 yards, while Adams had two catches for 29 yards. However, this allowed secondary receivers Michael Thomas (four catches for 65 yards) and Jakobi Meyers (five catches for 61 yards) to find more success.

There’s a concern that the Bills will just opt not to pass much, given that the score could get out of hand early in this one. Additionally, Davis is coming off of a three-catch, 21-yard day - his worst fantasy performance of the season so far. It came on just four targets, marking the fourth time in six games that he had been kept to four or fewer targets.

Unless he gets lucky and scores multiple touchdowns on a small target number, Davis just is not likely to produce a truly huge fantasy day very often. Still, given the high number of byes here in Week 7, Davis probably needs to be considered a low-end in a lot of lineups just because he is capable of delivering big splash plays that save entire fantasy weeks.

Fade: TE Dalton Kincaid

Tight end Dalton Kincaid returned to practice earlier this week after missing Week 6 while recovering from a concussion. A positive note is that fellow tight end Dawson Knox was not productive even with Kincaid sidelined, as the veteran caught just three of the six passes that came his way for 17 yards.

Kincaid has been held to five or fewer receptions in every game and has not yet exceeded six targets in any contest. He’s averaging just 6.9 yards per reception and hasn’t yet scored a touchdown. Tight ends tend to take a while to develop in the NFL so it’s not surprising that Kincaid hasn’t broken out yet, but he’s someone who can be benched or even dropped in shallow leagues.

BUF FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.30
BUF FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.10
BUF FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.22
BUF FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.30

No Brainers: N/A

Favorites: WR Kendrick Bourne

There’s not much to like about the New England offense that ranks 31st in the league in points per game, averaging just 12 points scored per contest. The only player in the New England passing game who should be inspiring any sort of excitement at all right now is veteran wide receiver Kendrick Bourne. Bourne has now been targeted nine or more times in three of the Patriots’ six games. He leads the team in total targets with 44, with his next closest teammate, tight end Hunter Henry, having seen just 28 targets so far. Bourne is a PPR-only option in deep leagues where you’re starting a lot of players. His upside just isn’t strong enough to be started as a WR2 or even a WR3.

On the Fence: RB Rhamondre Stevenson

The dreadfully disappointing season for Patriots running back Rhamondre Stevenson took a one-game break against the Raiders this past week. Even though Stevenson carried the ball just 10 times, he produced 46 yards on the ground - a 4.6 yard per carry average which was by far his best performance of the season. Additionally, he caught five passes for 24 more yards, which should give us at least some hope that the Patriots are beginning to manufacture open-field touches for him.

The Bills have quietly been a good defense for opposing running backs. Buffalo has given up the 10th-most fantasy points to the position. Saquon Barkley, Travis Etienne, Devon Achane, and Breece Hall have all had games where they produced nearly or even well over 100 total yards against them. Stevenson is not the explosive player that those backs are, but he’s still seeing a fairly high number of touches per week right now and that should be enough to make him a solid RB2 here in Week 7.

Fade: Everyone Else

Offenses that are scoring as few points as the Patriots are just do not offer enough upside for fantasy managers to trust the individual players. There are six teams on byes so Mac Jones is probably a must-start in two-quarterback formats, but there’s probably a fairly compelling case to be made that you could bench him in SuperFlex formats in favor of other skill position players who’ve shown more upside this season. No other players in the Patriots offense have shown us enough to make them startable fantasy options at this point.

Prediction: Bills 27, Patriots 14 ^ Top

Raiders @ Bears - (Green)
Line: LV -2.5
Total: 37.5

CHI FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.5
CHI FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.4
CHI FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.16
CHI FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.8

No Brainers: RB Josh Jacobs, WR Davante Adams

Favorites: N/A

On the Fence: WR Jakobi Meyers

You can make a decent case that Meyers has shown more chemistry with Jimmy Garoppolo (back) this season than Adams, but this Sunday the Raiders will turn to one of their backups. In the one previous game Jimmy G missed, Meyers had just two receptions for 33 yards. Despite similar production, Meyers isn’t on Adams’ level in terms of talent, and backups tend to favor the top guys -- in Week 3, Meyers was targeted four times to 13 for Adams. He still has potential as a flex, but it could also be a down week for Meyers.

Update: Brian Hoyer is expected to start.

Fade: QB Brian Hoyer

Garoppolo will officially miss Week 7 due to a back injury suffered last Sunday. The last time that happened, the Raiders turned to rookie Aidan O’Connell, who took seven sacks and turned the ball over three times in a loss to the Chargers. It remains to be seen who’ll get the nod this weekend, though with the team at 3-3 and facing a winnable game we’re guessing they will go with Hoyer. Regardless of who starts, they’re not worth your time, even facing a subpar Bears secondary.

LV FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.19
LV FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.12
LV FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.23
LV FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.14

No Brainers: WR D.J. Moore

Favorites: RB D’Onta Foreman

It was a bit of a surprise that Roschon Johnson (concussion) didn’t clear the NFL’s concussion protocol before last Sunday, and with him missing practice this week, it certainly appears he’ll miss another game. As such, expect Foreman (15-65-0 in Week 6) to once again man the starting role with Darrynton Evans as the complement. As a team, the Bears are averaging 4.8 yards per carry (fifth in the NFL), while Las Vegas is allowing 4.3 YPC. With Chicago expected to have a first-time starter at quarterback, Foreman could shoulder a heavy load. He’s a quality RB3 with upside.

On the Fence: TE Cole Kmet

After registering a dozen receptions for 127 yards and 3 TDs in Weeks 4 and 5, Kmet crashed back to Earth last Sunday, hauling in just two passes for nine yards. The injury to Justin Fields (thumb) further muddies the tight end’s outlook. On one hand, Tyson Bagent lacks Fields’ talent. On the other, the rookie could do a lot of checking down and throwing quick hitters, which could mean a healthy number of targets for Kmet. While he carries risk, Kmet should be viewed as a low-end TE1.

Fade: QB Tyson Bagent

Set to make his first NFL start for an injured Fields, Bagent should be avoided. While he looked decent at times, given the circumstances, he had two critical turnovers, including a fumble that was returned for a touchdown. The Raiders have done well defensively the past two weeks, so this isn’t a matchup to roll the dice on.

Prediction: Raiders 20, Bears 16 ^ Top

Commanders @ Giants - (Caron)
Line: WAS -3.0
Total: 37.5

NYG FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.21
NYG FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.7
NYG FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.12
NYG FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.17

No Brainers: N/A

Favorites: QB Sam Howell, RB Brian Robinson Jr.

Sam Howell had one of the ugliest single-game performances of 2023 back in Week 3 when he threw four interceptions in Washington’s blowout loss to Buffalo. With the exception of that game, Howell has been a consistent fantasy producer as one of the best QB2s in fantasy or even a low-end QB1 for those in desperation. What’s perhaps a bit surprising is that he’s actually been doing it with his arm and not his legs. Howell has now thrown multiple touchdowns in three games, including back-to-back games in Weeks 5 and 6 against Chicago and Atlanta - two teams that prefer to keep games low-scoring. He now faces the Giants, a defense that has intercepted just three passes on the year, so feel confident in starting Howell this week if you’re in need.

On the Fence: WR Terry McLaurin, WR Curtis Samuel

Terry McLaurin was only targeted 16 times over his first three games, but he’s now seen 26 targets over his past three games. This has allowed McLaurin to increase both his floor and ceiling, bringing him solidly back into the fantasy WR2 conversation. He’s been Sam Howell’s favorite target and should continue to see plenty of passes come his way this week. The Giants have given up the 12th-most fantasy points to opposing wide receivers so far this season, including a 10-catch game to Stefon Diggs this past week.

We’ve fallen down this path before, but Curtis Samuel is beginning to look like a player who fantasy managers need to take notice of. The veteran “Swiss Army knife” player has now scored a touchdown in three straight games while being targeted 19 times over that stretch. His increase in production has corresponded with a drop in production from Jahan Dotson, so this might actually be more intentional and schematic than it seems on the surface. It’s tough to trust any player who’s only seen five or more targets in two of his six games, but Samuel is an interesting bye-week fill-in against a bad Giants pass defense.

Fade: WR Jahan Dotson

Dotson was one of the hottest fantasy risers late in draft season, but things have certainly not worked out for those who took a chance on the former first-round NFL Draft pick. Dotson has failed to exceed 40 receiving yards in any contest and has only scored one touchdown. Worse yet, he’s coming off his lowest usage game of the season as he was targeted just once in Washington’s Week 6 victory over Atlanta. He’s still running routes on 87 percent of Washington’s snaps this season, but there’s not much else to be excited about with him right now.

WAS FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.2
WAS FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.21
WAS FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.5
WAS FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.15

No Brainers: RB Saquon Barkley

Favorites: WR Wan’Dale Robinson

Giants wide receiver Wan’Dale Robinson saw his best usage of the season this past week as he ran routes on 73 percent of the team’s pass plays while commanding a 27 percent target share. That increased usage also resulted in Robinson’s best fantasy performance yet as he caught all eight of the passes that came his way for 62 yards. He’s a low-aDOT player who doesn’t offer a ton of explosiveness, but the Giants’ offense isn’t really pushing the ball down the field much right now anyway, so he’s locked into a significant role right now.

The Commanders have given up the fifth-most fantasy points per game to opposing wide receivers, including huge games to Drake London, D.J. Moore, A.J. Brown, Stefon Diggs, Marvin Mims, and Brandon Johnson. This is one of the biggest pass-funnel defenses in the league and Robinson should have a good chance to exploit it.

The biggest concern right now is that Robinson is (again) dealing with another injury, this time a knee that has kept him out of practice throughout the early part of the week. We’ll need to keep an eye on him, but he’s a sneaky fantasy starter if he’s active.

If Robinson is out, fantasy managers could look to his teammate Darius Slayton. Slayton hasn’t done much this season, but he’s run routes on well over 80 percent of New York’s pass plays, whereas no other wide receiver on the team has run routes on more than 51 percent of the team’s pass plays. Slayton is also coming off of a four-catch, 69-yard day against the Bills on a season-high six targets - all season highs for him.

On the Fence: TE Darren Waller

The tight end landscape continues to be a total trainwreck, so there probably aren’t many fantasy teams out there that could realistically bench him for another player who has a higher ceiling, but Darren Waller continues to disappoint and has now gone six games without a touchdown. Additionally, the former Raiders star has now been held to fewer than 50 receiving yards in four of his six games.

On a positive note, Washington has given up three touchdowns to opposing tight ends over their past two games, so perhaps Waller can finally get into the end zone for his first time in a Giants uniform.

Fade: Giants Quarterbacks

We can’t really blame Tyrod Taylor for the Giants’ loss against a much better Bills team, but the truth is that he just doesn’t bring a lot of upside to this offense as a whole. He completed 24 passes for just 200 yards on the day, adding 24 yards on the ground.

There’s a chance that Daniel Jones is back this week after he missed Week 6 with a neck injury, but it’s tough to be very excited about the quarterback position on this team no matter who’s behind center. Even if Jones is out there, we have to be realistic and understand that if his neck is still bothering him then he’s probably also going to be hesitant to take off and run, thus limiting the only part of his game where he’s above average. This is a quarterback situation we’ll want to avoid, if at all possible, for now.

Prediction: Commanders 20, Giants 14 ^ Top

Falcons @ Buccaneers - (Mack)
Line: TB -2.5
Total: 37.5

TB FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.13
TB FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.22
TB FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.10
TB FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.21

No Brainers: RB Bijan Robinson

Favorites: N/A

On the Fence: WR Drake London, TE Kyle Pitts

A journeyman tight end (Jonnu Smith) is matching the production of Kyle Pitts. That’s all you need to know about Pitts and his current status as a fantasy option. Drake London emerged last week and finished with the most receptions and receiving yards of his young career. But relying on these two, means relying on QB Desmond Ridder. That’s a terrible position to be in. Plus, Tampa’s pass defense usually feasts on teams with average passing games, having limited the Bears and Saints to under 170 yards passing. That said, London can be used as a WR3 this week with limited upside.

Fade: RB Tyler Allgeier

I remain baffled that Tyler Allgeier has five fewer carries than Bijan Robinson. Every team in the NFL has a Tyler Allgeier, but only a few have players the caliber of Robinson. But inexplicably, the team continues using Allgeier—with his 3.2 ypc compared to Robinson’s 5.0 ypc—in key situations. I don’t get it. Anyway, Allgeier is not a fantasy starter. Keep him on your bench.

ATL FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.20
ATL FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.30
ATL FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.28
ATL FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.7

No Brainers: WR Mike Evans

Favorites: N/A

On the Fence: WR Chris Godwin, Rachaad White

Chris Godwin is a WR3 in fantasy with upside. That’s not great, nor is it terrible, but it does make deciding what to do with him fairly easy on a week-to-week basis. He’s yet to find the endzone this season, but his 14 receptions on 18 targets over the past two games gives him a respectable floor.

Meanwhile, Rachaad White has stumbled out the gate in the first five games of the season. He’s yet to rush for more than 73 yards, but he does supplement his ground production with some action in the passing game. Not to the degree that it makes up for the lack of rushing production, but it elevates his floor somewhat, so he’s not a total dud. White is just too inconsistent to count on at this point, though.

Fade: QB Baker Mayfield

Mayfield came back down to earth with a loud thud last week against Detroit after throwing three TDs the prior week against New Orleans. The Lions held him out of the endzone and limited him to barely 50 percent completion percentage. Mayfield is a streaky QB, so his up and down play is not a shock. But it is that inconsistency that keeps Mayfield on fantasy benches or the waiver wire.

Prediction: Buccaneers 23, Falcons 19 ^ Top

Lions @ Ravens - (Green)
Line: BAL -3.0
Total: 43.5

BAL FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.31
BAL FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.19
BAL FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.24
BAL FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.32

No Brainers: WR Amon-Ra St. Brown, TE Sam LaPorta

Favorites: RB Jahmyr Gibbs (hamstring)

With David Montgomery (ribs) set to miss this week, Gibbs (hamstring), who has sat out the last two games with a hamstring injury, is expected to return. The rookie hasn’t met expectations thus far, but in the one game he played without Montgomery, he carried the ball 17 times for 80 yards -- that came against Atlanta in Week 3. Running the ball is engrained in Detroit’s DNA right now, and they won’t shy away from it even without their bell cow or against the league’s No. 10 run defense. Assuming he’s active, Gibbs should slide into your lineup as a borderline top-20 option.

On the Fence: N/A

Fade: QB Jared Goff

Put bluntly, Goff has not delivered away from Ford Field during his tenure with the Lions. Granted, he tallied 353 yards and 2 TDs in Tampa Bay last Sunday, but that was just the second time in his last 15 road games that he’s thrown for more than one TD. The Ravens have been a lockdown unit against the pass as well, trailing only Cleveland in pass defense on the season at 163.2 yards per game. With injuries and Byes, it’s a tough week for fantasy owners to find a serviceable option at quarterback. Even within those constraints, it’s difficult to advocate slotting Goff in as a QB1.

DET FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.16
DET FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.32
DET FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.14
DET FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.5

No Brainers: QB Lamar Jackson, TE Mark Andrews

Favorites: WR Zay Flowers

While the signing of Odell Beckham Jr. garnered most of the headlines, through six weeks it’s been Flowers that has emerged as the No. 1 receiver in Charm City. The rookie comfortably leads the club in targets (48), receptions (35), and receiving yards (367), and he just scored his first NFL touchdown last Sunday. Detroit has been tougher on the run than the pass this year, which is enough to make Flowers a WR2 for Week 7.

On the Fence: RB Gus Edwards

Minus J.K. Dobbins (Achilles), Edwards has emerged as the lead back, tallying 72 carries on the season to 37 for Justice Hill. His 16-41-0 line from Week 6 shows that he’s been doing a lot of work between the tackles, and he’s unlikely to find the going any easier this week against a Lions team that tops the NFL in run defense (64.7 yards/game). He avoids a full-blown fade designation because we know the Ravens are committed to running the ball, so he should have opportunities to overdeliver as an RB3/flex.

Fade: N/A

Prediction: Ravens 23, Lions 20 ^ Top

Cardinals @ Seahawks - (Fessel)
Line: SEA -8.0
Total: 44.5

SEA FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.9
SEA FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.15
SEA FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.1
SEA FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.29

No Brainers: N/A

Favorites: WR Marquise Brown

The Seahawks have allowed the 2nd most points to wide receivers his season, but their secondary has been getting healthy and it looks to be tougher work for receivers going forward. Still, Brown continues to dominate Arizona's target share even when things aren't going right (11 targets last week on a 4-catch day) and he's far away his QB's best option until Michael Wilson develops more of a route tree. Target volume gives Brown a good chance to have a decent game despite a matchup that isn't as easy as the numbers suggest.

On the Fence: N/A

Fade: QB Joshua Dobbs, All Cardinals RB's, All Cardinals TE's

The Seahawks allowed three straight 300-yard passing performances to start the season, but the Seahawks secondary was dealing with injuries out of the gate and looks poised to have all of their key pieces healthy for the first time. Jamaal Adams returned last week, and the Hawks turned Joe Burrow back into the quarterback he was Weeks 1 through 3, after he had his first substantial performance in Week 4.

The only mobile quarterback that the Seahawks have faced prior to Dobbs has been Daniel Jones, and they dispatched him without a score while pinning 2 picks to his name. Kyler Murray has hit the practice field and may be a couple of weeks away from returning. If you haven't been able to get something on the trade market for Dobbs yet, this might be your final shot. Take what you can, you probably won't miss him this week.

The loss of running back James Conner (IR) led to the difficult task of trying to parse out the value of Keaontay Ingram and Emari Demarcado. Enter Damien Williams, who essentially erased Demarcado from the equation. Ingram did manage 12 touches, but Williams was not far behind with 9 and, unsurprisingly, neither running back was able to make a significant dent with those touch totals.

The Seahawks are allowing just 2.7 yards per rush this season. The main avenue to success for anyone in the Cardinals running back room might be through the air, as the Seahawks have surrendered at least 5 receptions to a running back each of the last three weeks. But neither the 31-year-old Williams nor Ingram appear to be significant receiving threats. This is a situation worth avoiding.

At tight end, Trey McBride had a significant performance last week, and this may indeed signal the moment he begins to usurp Zach Ertz as Arizona's top TE. Yet it remains to be seen how long such a transition might take to reach full fruition, and this is not a great matchup. Bobby Wagner and company have made easy work of tight ends - the 5th fewest points allowed to the position - and so it's best not to roll with either Ertz or McBride this week.

ARI FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.4
ARI FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.3
ARI FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.7
ARI FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.25

No Brainers: RB Kenneth Walker

Update: DK Metcalf (Hip, Ribs) is a gametime decision.

Favorites: QB Geno Smith, WR DK Metcalf

The Cardinals have surrendered season-best performances to quarterbacks Daniel Jones and Joe Burrow - both who have otherwise struggled. Brock Purdy also had a nearly perfect day against the Cardinals, throwing just one incomplete pass and picking up his second highest fantasy total of the season (21.3 points). This matchup has all of the makings of a get-right game for Geno Smith, just as the Chargers did for Dak Prescott last week. Smith is still waiting on the big boost of having a healthy offensive line, but tackle Charles Cross, guard Phil Haynes and guard Damien Lewis all logging in limited practices on Wednesday is a meaningful step in the right direction. There's plenty enough to like in this matchup to roll with Smith.

Metcalf takes on a Cardinals team that has given up the 7th most points to wide receivers, and much of that damage has been done by WR1's. Recently, both Brandon Aiyuk and Cooper Kupp have walloped the Cards for 148 yards receiving. Between those two outings, Ja'Marr Chase had a game for the ages, collecting 15 receptions for 192 yards and 3 touchdowns. The possible return of Budda Baker (just 1 game played in 2023) is worth noting, but cornerback seems to be the real issue. Marco Wilson is the only Cardinals cornerback to have started every game and he's been scorched - allowing 133 passer rating in coverage. Clearly, the Cardinals are looking for answers at corner and that makes this a rich spot for Metcalf.

On the Fence: WR Tyler Lockett, WR Jaxon Smith-Njigba

Lockett is dealing with a hamstring injury and was limited to start the week. If he progresses by Friday, he's likely worth a start. But if he sits or appears headed towards more of a decoy role, Smith-Njigba should be headed towards a bigger snap count and target share. Njigba is already coming off of season-highs in both snap rate (72%) and receiving yards (48).

Fade: Seahawks Tight Ends

Pete Carroll's Tight-End-Go-Round continues to make it difficult to start Noah Fant, let alone Colby Parkinson or Will Dissly. Most likely, you're looking for Fant to come up with a touchdown in this one. The bad news is that the Cardinals have not surrendered a touchdown to any tight end this season. It's no further comfort that George Kittle had just 1 reception for 9 yards against the Cardinals last week. If you are short at tight end this week, it's probably best to look elsewhere for help.

Prediction: Seahawks 24, Cardinals 14 ^ Top

Steelers @ Rams - (Fessel)
Line: LAR -3.5
Total: 43.5

LAR FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.17
LAR FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.26
LAR FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.29
LAR FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.4

No Brainers: N/A

Update: Pat Freiermuth is Out with a hamstring injury suffered in practice.

Favorites: TE Pat Freiermuth

Pat Freiermuth and the Steelers roll in to Los Angeles to take on a Rams defense that hasn't had a lot of answers for the tight end position since they let Bobby Wagner go during the off-season. The impact of losing Wagner shows in the numbers: Only the Broncos and Jets are giving up more than the 12.6 FPtst/G the Rams are surrendering to opposing tight ends. In Week 4, Dallas Goedert had his break out party against the Rams, picking up 8 receptions 117 yards and a touchdown. Last week, it was Trey McBride showing signs that he's ready to take the reins from Zach Ertz, pulling down 4 receptions for 62 yards.

Opposing teams are liking what they're seeing against the Rams defenses when it comes to the tight end, as the Colts, Eagles and Cardinals each targeted their tight ends 10 times versus Los Angeles. This is a great spot for a once again healthy Freiermuth to break out.

On the Fence: WR George Pickens

The Rams are making life difficult for opposing receivers in 2023, and last week Marquise Brown (4-34-0 on 11 targets) was the latest victim. Only select elite talents have made any noise against the Rams thus far this year, and the Steelers are lacking that kind of talent. The best bet is George Pickens this week, and that's only if the Rams happen to reprimand Derion Kendrick for his arrest, causing their secondary to get a bit thin.

If there is a weakness to the Rams pass defense right now, it's that safeties Russ Yeast and Jordan Fuller have both surrendered over a 100 rating to opposing wideouts, so losing Kendrick could provide Pickens opportunities to take advantage of the Rams safeties downfield. The situation is worth monitoring.

Fade: QB Kenny Pickett, RB Najee Harris

The Rams have continued to have mixed results against opposing QBs, but little of the damage has been done in the passing game. Los Angeles has given up just 1203 passing yards in six games, with 3 touchdown tosses against 3 picks. Kenny Pickett lacks the special QB mobility which the Rams have been vulnerable against. Alarmingly, he only has 12 yards rushing in five games. Even with Diontae Johnson likely to return this week and the possibility that Rams corner Derion Kendrick could be sat following a gun charge, it's not a particularly good spot for the struggling Pickett.

Meanwhile, 2023 is turning into an even more disappointing season for Najee Harris than 2022 was. Off-season moves by the Steelers and the drafting of massive tight end Darnell Washington seemed to have Pittsburgh blocking scheme moving in the right direction, but - coupled with a passing game thus far lacking teeth - Harris continues to face smothering penetration from defenses.

Harris, for his part, has broken a tackle once every 7.9 rushes, one of the best totals in the league. He's also broken three tackles on just 5 receptions, but there's been no space to work with, and it's not poised to get easier going on the road against an Aaron Donald-led Rams defense that has given up just the 25th most points the running backs. Najee's fortunes could improve in the weeks ahead, especially as young blocking talent gains experience and perhaps the offensive line develops some chemistry, but this is not likely to be the week that jump starts Harris's value.

PIT FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.14
PIT FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.13
PIT FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.3
PIT FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.26

No Brainers: WR Cooper Kupp

Favorites: N/A

On the Fence: QB Matthew Stafford, WR Puka Nacua

Matthew Stafford is third in passing yards with 1677, and he faces an opponent in the Steelers who have surrendered a pair of three hundred passing yard performances to opposing quarterbacks, and have yet to allow less than 220 yards through the air. With Kyren Williams out, Ronnie Rivers sent to the IR and Cam Akers traded, the Rams are going to have to dig deep at running back and that might mean Stafford threatens a season high in passing attempts.

The other side of the coin is that Stafford has yet to top 20 fantasy points and has just one multi-touchdown passing performance. The hope for Stafford this week is that he might be able to approach 400 yards passing in a high-volume performance against the Steelers defense, and perhaps have his second multi-touchdown effort without much of a running game to turn to near the goal line.

Meanwhile, the Steelers have allowed the 3rd most points to wide receivers, having given up three massive performances. We know what Kupp can do and the question is going to be a continuous one for the Rams: is there enough meat on the bone available for Puca Nacua?

Pittsburgh hasn't been vulnerable to WR2's or 3's, giving up just one double-digit performance to the 2nd and 3rd options (Jakobi Meyers). In Nacua's favor is the fact that the Rams are likely to lean harder on their passing game. Nacua can be thought of as a borderline flex option this week, and for those in a pinch, the hope is that Nacua could see double-digit targets.

Update: Zach Evans will the the third-string RB behind Royce Freeman and Darrell Henderson.

Fade: TE Tyler Higbee, All Rams Running Backs

Despite facing the likes of George Kittle, Mark Andrews, and Dalton Schultz this year, the Steelers have given up just 17 receptions for 176 yards and 1 touchdown to tight ends. For Higbee, it was devastating to his prospects that Cooper Kupp looks like he hasn’t lost a beat, but Pucua Nacua and Tutu Atwell, both acquitted themselves very well in Kupp's absence. Nacua, particularly, has maintained major relevance and has amassed 18 targets since Kupp's return two weeks ago - he still leads the NFL in receptions. As a result, It's very difficult for a tight end who falls to third or fourth option for his quarterback to succeed in fantasy football without a friendly match up and/or special talent. Higbee has neither in his favor, so he is a sensible sit this week.

Zach Evans was selected in the 6th round by the Rams this season, and on paper he appears to be their top option at running back this week. Yet the Rams have signed veteran Darrell Henderson to the practice squad, who has plenty of experience with the team, having played 50 games with Los Angeles and started 28 during his career. Henderson could take on early-down work as Evans never handled more than 12 carries per game during college, whereas Henderson handled as many as 16 per game at Mississippi.

The Rams have also already elevated Royce Freeman to the active roster from the practice squad. Freeman is the most sizable of the three, at 6 feet tall and 238 pounds. In their respective pro careers, both Freeman and Henderson have handled 15 or more carries on numerous occasions, with Henderson going over 20 carries in a game as recently as 2021. But keep in mind that it's been Evans who has been on the active roster all along, making the situation completely murky.

Expect Henderson to be called up to the active roster as early as this weekend, and then it will be anyone's guess who Sean McVay calls on most against the Steelers. If there is an upshot, it's that the Steelers have twice surrendered a 100-yard to a rusher this year. But that came in the season's first two weeks, and the Steelers defense has been healthier since, holding respective team-leading ball carriers Josh Jacobs, Dameon Pierce and Gus Edwards to just 3.6 yards per rush and 1 touchdown.

It's probably a situation to avoid.

Prediction: Steelers 20, Rams 19 ^ Top

Packers @ Broncos - (Fessel)
Line: GB -1.5
Total: 45.5

DEN FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.3
DEN FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.1
DEN FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.15
DEN FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.1

No Brainers: N/A

Favorites: QB Jordan Love, TE Luke Musgrave

This is really a bet against the Broncos defense, more than a bet on Jordan Love. Love disappointed against the Raiders two weeks ago, and he's been extremely dependent on touchdowns, completing just 56% of his passes and throwing for merely 217 yards per game, but he does have rushing upside (21.8 rushing yards per game and 2 rushing touchdowns).

The Broncos just surrendered their third 300-yard passing game last week, and while that was against Patrick Mahomes, they surrendered 335 yards passing to Justin Fields the week before - easily his career high. Additionally, had Sam Howell come away with just 1 more passing yard in Week 2, it'd actually be four three-hundred yard passing performances allowed through six games.

The two games where the Broncos have avoided QB's racking up passing yards against them were versus Zach Wilson (199 yards) and Jimmy Garoppolo (200 yards). The Broncos have also surrendered four multi-touchdown games to QBs, including a pair of 4 touchdown performances - right up Jordan Love's alley. Green Bay also had a bye week with which to run Love through extra reps of the game plan, which bodes well against a Broncos team that seems lost.

Denver has also been taken to task by tight ends, allowing the most fantasy points per game to the position. Logan Thomas (9.2 pts), Cole Kmet (24.1), Tyler Conklin (8.7) and - quite unsurprisingly - Travis Kelce (16.9) have all easily finished the week among the Top 10 performers when taking on Denver. The only exceptions came via the Las Vegas TE quagmire, and from Miami’s blocking TE Durham Smythe. While Luke Musgrave is a rookie and still polishing his game, his 23 targets are third on the Packers and he has no serious contender on the roster for opportunities at the position. He fits the bill of being the kind of tight end to enjoy a good day against Denver.

Update: Aaron Jones is listed as Questionable.

On the Fence: WR Christian Watson, RB Aaron Jones, RB AJ Dillon

While the Broncos have been scorched by opposing quarterbacks, wide receivers have been merely middle-of-the-pack against this defense. Patrick Surtain is a large reason for this. Opponents have had success moving their go-to receiver around, particularly into the slot. Christian Watson has only played about 30% of his snaps in the slot thus far in his career, but the Packers may increase that total this week in order to try and free him up from Surtain.

While wide receivers haven't dominated Denver, it's been a different story with running backs. The Broncos (and Panthers) are in another stratosphere when it comes to allowing running backs to have huge days. Five different running backs have registered a twenty-plus point performance against them. The question is, which Green Bay running back takes advantage of it?

In Aaron Jones' absence two weeks ago, AJ Dillon saw 20 carries. If Aaron Jones - limited participant on Wednesday/Thursday - isn't able to get back from his hamstring injury this week, Dillon is a must start. But if Jones is able to return, his all-around ability as a runner and receiver makes him a surefire start at RB1. If you roster either back, keep a close eye on Jones' status as the week progresses.

Fade: N/A

GB FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.23
GB FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.5
GB FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.27
GB FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.20

No Brainers: N/A

Favorites: N/A

On the Fence: RB Javonte Williams

The Broncos running back room is crowded. The Packers have been vulnerable to running backs both in terms of the ground game (107 yards per game and 5 TDs) and the passing game (32 receptions allowed), but Samaje Perine and recent committee addition Jaleel McLaughlin are likely to share pass catching duties and could split the rushing touches that don't go to Javonte Williams.

Williams still remains the favorite to lead the team in rushes and to be featured at the goal line, but in his four healthy games he's only seen between 10 and 13 rushes, meaning he'll have to make the most of his opportunities to pay off. The matchup is good enough to consider him a borderline flex.

Fade: QB Russell Wilson

Wilson currently sits just inside the top 12 in QB fantasy points per game, but he's amassed that with the benefit of a light schedule that included Washington, Miami and Chicago - three of the eight friendliest defenses for quarterbacks this year.

Enter Green Bay, whom quarterbacks haven't had much luck against - aside from a surprise top 10 finish from Desmond Ridder. Ridder's 237 passing yards have been the ceiling to-date, and no other QB has mustered a multi-touchdown performance versus the Pack. To this point, the Chiefs are the toughest fantasy defense that Wilson has faced, and he was unable to even reach double figures.

Discussion continues to grow about the possibility of Wilson being benched. Jason Fitzgerald of OverTheCap recently highlighted that Wilson's guaranteed money for 2024 would nearly double if he were to get injured this season. It's possible that Wilson ends up making a similar exit to that of former-Raider Derek Carr last year. While such a benching - if it occurs - is more probable later in the season, no two situations are the same and the risk grows with the increasing possibility that the Broncos have a shot at the first overall pick in next year’s draft.

As with the Cardinals Joshua Dobbs, it’s worth considering keeping Wilson out of your line up and - if you can find a desperate suitor - trading him away. With recent injuries at the position and bye weeks in play, this might be your window to get some kind of return.

Prediction: Packers 24, Broncos 21 ^ Top

Chargers @ Chiefs - (Fessel)
Line: KC -5.5
Total: 47.5

KC FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.27
KC FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.29
KC FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.25
KC FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.18

No Brainers: QB Justin Herbert, WR Keenan Allen

Favorites: RB Austin Ekeler

The Chiefs have made life hard for running backs in 2023. As a matter of fact, David Montgomery's 13.4 fantasy points in Week 1 is the most they've allowed to any running back this year. Alexander Mattison is the only other RB to even break double digits. Mattison and Montgomery needed a score to get to double figures, and that's the only two scores the Chiefs have surrendered to backs thus far.

Austin Ekeler enters this hostile situation coming off of a disappointing performance (just 27 yards rushing and 62 total yards with no scores), but was encouraging from a touch stand point (18). Ekeler (ankle) appears to have gotten through the game without any harm, and looking ahead to a game where the Chargers may find themselves trailing, Ekeler should see more than enough volume through the air to at least chase RB2 status.

On the Fence: WR Josh Palmer

In two games since Mike Williams went on the IR, Palmer has amassed 15 targets and recorded 7 receptions for 137 yards. Much like last season, injuries have moved Palmer up the target tree and put him in WR3/4 territory. Consider him on that fringe against a Chiefs defense that has played pretty well, but may force Justin Herbert into position to throw a lot of passes.

Fade: TE Gerald Everett, WR Quentin Johnston

The Chiefs have faced the likes of Sam LaPorta, Evan Engram, Cole Kmet and T.J. Hockenson at tight end thus far. They've yet to surrender more than 8.7 points to any of them (Engram). Gerald Everett is not on the level of these four tight ends, and he's stuck behind Keenan Allen, Austin Ekeler and Josh Palmer on the target tree. Speaking of trees, 6’8” Donald Parham has more than nipped into Everett's red zone opportunities, with 3 touchdowns. That's bad news for a guy whose fantasy relevance is largely touchdown dependent, especially against a tough Chiefs defense.

If the outlook is tough for Gerald Everett, it's not much better for rookie wide receiver Quentin Johnston. Johnston has been targeted just 13 times - six less than Everett - and has played just 33 percent of offensive snaps. The injury to Mike Williams has led Johnston to see a boost in snaps (about 50%) over the last two weeks, but even that bounce hasn't led to production (1 reception on 5 targets over that span).

With a season high of 18 yards to this point, it's looking more and more like there may be a lot of similarity between Johnston's rookie campaign and the rookie year of the guy he's slated to replace. One can hope that the long-term results also match, as Johnston becoming the next Mike Williams would hardly be a bad thing. For now, it's best to sit him against a Chiefs defense that has given up the 9th fewest points to wide receivers.

LAC FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.1
LAC FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.8
LAC FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.2
LAC FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.24

No Brainers: QB Patrick Mahomes, RB Isiah Pacheco, TE Travis Kelce

Favorites: WR Rashee Rice

The Chargers have allowed 8 receivers to reach double figure point totals in just five games. Tyreek Hill, River Cracraft, Justin Jefferson and Brandin Cooks have all had their season high performance against Los Angeles. There's no shame in getting done in by Hill or Jefferson, but for Cracraft and Cooks, it's been their only respective double-digit outputs to-date. The Chiefs lack a stud wide receiver, and largely lack wideouts with a large enough role to bank on, but Rashee Rice has fleshed out enough of an opportunity to like him in this spot.

Rice leads Chiefs wideouts in targets (28), receptions (21), reception rate (75%), success rate (61%) and touchdowns (2). Only Travis Kelce has been thrown to more by Patrick Mahomes than Rice. Against the Chargers secondary, it only took Cracraft and Cooks a grand total of 5 and 4 targets, respectively, to have their best day of the season, and Rice should see at least that many targets this weekend.

On the Fence: WR Kadarius Toney

Toney has now seen 6 targets each of the last two weeks, and he's also handled 3 rushes and thrown a pass during that time. The rushes have amounted to negative 4 yards and the pass fell incomplete, but it remains evident that Andy Reid has expectations that Toney can and will make plays.

The Chiefs are clearly trying to utilize Toney in big spots. As such, Toney did come away with a touchdown last week and has 8 total catches in the last two matchups. His snap rate has also jumped to 40% over the last two games, after peaking at 28% in the Week 2.

As with Rice, the matchup is so good that four or five touches may be more than enough to produce flex value, and Toney has a number of ways to get there. He comes with a bit more risk than Rice, of course, as he hardly played in Week 3 (just 2 snaps) and he has a history of soft tissue injuries. Consider him a boom-or-bust option at flex versus the Chargers.

Fade: WR Skyy Moore

The Chiefs wide receivers remain the weekly story and no one more so than Skyy Moore. The writing may be on the wall for now. Coming into the year, one of the roles which Moore was supposed to absorb was that of former (and now current Chief) Mercole Hardman. With Hardman reacquired this week via a trade with the Jets, and likely needing little time to get reacquainted with his old offense, it's appears that Moore stands to be the biggest loser as a result. Moore hasn't really done much to the point to warrant a start on your roster, anyway, but this is probably the kiss that seals it.

Prediction: Chiefs 30, Raiders 24 ^ Top

Dolphins @ Eagles - (Caron)
Line: PHI -3.0
Total: 51.5

PHI FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.12
PHI FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.27
PHI FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.6
PHI FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.13

No Brainers: QB Tua Tagovailoa, WR Tyreek Hill, RB Raheem Mostert

Favorites: WR Jaylen Waddle

With 19 targets over his past two games, Jaylen Waddle is back in the good graces of fantasy managers after producing back-to-back double-digit fantasy days with a touchdown. We’ve been waiting for the breakout and it’s finally here. Now the Dolphins face an Eagles defense that has given up the sixth-most fantasy points per game to opposing wide receivers. We know that Tyreek Hill is going to get his, but there should still be plenty of meat left on the bone for Waddle. Fire him up as a high-level WR2 with legit WR1 upside.

On the Fence: N/A

Fade: RB Salvon Ahmed, RB Jeff Wilson

We now have a six-game sample size where the Miami backfield has been dominating for fantasy. It’s primarily been Raheem Mostert with Devon Achane having a short stint as the RB1 before he got injured, but this past week we saw Salvon Ahmed get into the end zone for the first time as he carried the ball six times for 23 yards and added three receptions for 11 yards in the passing game. Ahmed’s usage has some fantasy managers interested as we’ve seen the Dolphins implement a dual-headed backfield in just about every game, but we should be cautious as the Dolphins have also played in quite a few games where they’ve blown out their competition, giving them incentive to rest their starting running backs.

The other thing we need to pay attention to is that Jeff Wilson has been practicing fully throughout the week and it appears likely that he will return here in Week 7. Wilson has a history of being utilized in this backfield and there’s a good chance that he’d actually be given the mop-up duty in the scenario where the Dolphins got ahead by multiple scores. Of course, the Dolphins might also opt to limit his touches and instead turn this into a three-headed backfield, which would make both Ahmed and Wilson very shaky plays.

Both players are worth stashing in deep leagues, but let’s try to get a better understanding of how they’ll be utilized before we put them in our starting lineups.

MIA FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.10
MIA FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.16
MIA FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.9
MIA FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.12

No Brainers: QB Jalen Hurts, WR A.J. Brown, RB D’Andre Swift

Favorites: TE Dallas Goedert

While he didn’t match his monstrous Week 5 performance of 117 receiving yards, fantasy managers should still be confident in Philadelphia tight end Dallas Goedert after he was targeted eight times in Week 6. Goedert has now seen at least seven targets in four of Philadelphia’s first six games, making him one of the higher floor players at the position even though he’s only had one real difference-making performance.

Goedert now faces a Dolphins defense that has given up the 12th-most fantasy points to opposing tight ends so far this season. The best tight ends they’ve faced have been Darren Waller, who scored 16.6 fantasy points against them, and Hunter Henry, who scored 17.2 fantasy points against them. This is a great matchup for Goedert and one that he should be able to exploit.

On the Fence: N/A

Fade: WR DeVonta Smith

The Eagles offense struggled mightily against a good Jets defense this past week, but one player who’s been struggling for much longer than that is wide receiver DeVonta Smith. Smith was targeted 11 times in the loss to New York but managed to haul in just five of those passes for 44 yards and he’s now been held to single-digit fantasy points in three of his past four games. In fact, Smith has now been held to fewer than 50 receiving yards in four of the Eagles’ six games played. Smith is certainly one of the better WR2s in the league, but Hurts’ inaccuracy as a passer has really hurt him.

Additionally, Smith has been sitting out of practice with a nagging hamstring injury - something he’s been dealing with since Week 3. We shouldn’t expect that he’s going to miss this game, but he might not be operating at full capacity and that makes him an even riskier play than he normally would be. The positive is that Smith does now face a Miami defense that has given up the ninth-most fantasy points to opposing wide receivers, so don’t take this as a “must-bench.” Rather, limit your expectations of him right now because things have been ugly and we probably want to see him produce before having our normal confidence in him.

Prediction: Dolphins 30, Eagles 27 ^ Top

49ers @ Vikings - (Green)
Line: SF -6.5
Total: 43.5

MIN FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.8
MIN FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.28
MIN FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.4
MIN FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.16

Update: Chrisitan McCaffrey is Questionable while Deebo Samuel has been ruled Out.

No Brainers: RB Christian McCaffrey (oblique), WR Brandon Aiyuk, TE George Kittle

Favorites: QB Brock Purdy

In absorbing his first regular-season loss, Purdy struggled. He completed just 12 of 27 passes for 125 yards, 1 TD, and 1 INT. Expect the second-year pro to rebound on Monday night. The 49ers could be missing a couple important pieces, though both McCaffrey and Deebo Samuel (shoulder) have a chance to play. Either way, the 49ers have the talent to put points on the board, especially against a middling defense like the Vikings. In a thin week for the position, Purdy has top-10 upside.

On the Fence: WR Deebo Samuel (shoulder)

Samuel departed the team’s Week 6 loss with a shoulder injury early on, finishing the day without a reception. The physical wideout entered the year as the top receiver on the club, but he’s fallen behind Aiyuk at this point and is operating more as a high-end gadget guy, averaging 77.2 combined yards per game (excluding last Sunday). With the possibility that he’ll be inactive or, even worse, limited Monday night, you shouldn’t view him as more than a WR3 if he suits up.

Fade: N/A

SF FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.29
SF FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.18
SF FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.19
SF FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.28

No Brainers: RB Alexander Mattison, TE T.J. Hockenson

Favorites: N/A

On the Fence: WR Jordan Addison

Addison got his first taste of life as a No. 1 receiver last Sunday, and the results were mixed. He was targeted five times, catching three for 28 yards and a touchdown, the fourth of his rookie year. The low yardage was disappointing given he was facing the Bears, which boast one of the NFL’s worst defenses. The going will be tougher this Monday against the 49ers, though the success Amari Cooper enjoyed while catching balls from P.J. Walker at least provides hope that Addison can be a WR3.

Fade: QB Kirk Cousins

Through his first three games of 2023, Cousins averaged 358 yards, 3 TDs, and 0.67 INTs per contest. Over the last three, that drops to 201 yards, 1.67 TDs, and 0.67 INTs. The 49ers rank 10th in pass defense (197.8 yards per game), and they’ve racked up 10 picks on the season versus only five touchdown passes. If you have any kind of decent alternative, Cousins is best left on your bench for Week 7.

Prediction: 49ers 31, Vikings 17 ^ Top