Each week weíll review some interesting data points related
to player usage; information I consider to be among the most predictive
and actionable in fantasy football. The truth doesnít always
lie in the stats but usage tells the story of how a coaching staff
intends to utilize a player.
Here are some of the most important usage statistics for Week 7:
played the highest percentage of snaps among running backs in
Week 7 at 94%. Kliff Kingsbury deserves the blame he is getting
from many in the fantasy community after that trick. He knew
Johnson wasnít playing meaningful snaps but held that information
back. Obviously, Edmonds balled out (27-126-3) and Johnson likely
would have too. If this performance gets Edmonds more touches
going forward, he could be a useful flex option and also take
away some of Johnsonís upside.
saw his highest snap count percentage of the season (89%). Either
remains not fully healthy or the coaching staff in Seattle simply
wants Carson on the field the vast majority of the time. For
now, ride Carson.
Barkley returned from injury and played 86% of the snaps.
Though he didnít do too much with them (18-72-1), he had at
least one long gain called back on a penalty. He should remain
one of the top fantasy options even in a poor offense.
Murray had a huge game (27-119-2, 5-31), essentially taking
Kamaraís role in the offense. His snap share jumped from a previous
high of 42% to 83%, and he produced against a good Bears defense.
Perhaps the Saints find a way to get him more involved even
when Kamara returns.
Henry matched his season-high in snap share at 75%. Dion
Lewis, even in a close game, only touched the ball once.
Henry seems locked into a workhorse role, and those that took
the gamble on him have been paid off. If the offense continues
to play better with Tannehill, he could be in for increased
production as well.
usage continued its upward trend, in part because Matt
Breida (concussion) got injured again. In his last three
games he has played 34%, 55%, and 66% of the snaps. No one produced
in sloppy conditions in Washington, but Coleman did receive
20 carries and 2 receptions.
Johnson left with a knee injury, it was rookie Ty
Johnson who filled his role, playing 64% of the snaps (10-29,
4-28). Although he was bottled up by the excellent Vikings defense,
if Kerryon remains out, Ty could be quite useful for the next
two games (vs Giants, at Raiders).
hit a new high in his snap count percentage with 63% on Thursday
night. The coaches seem to trust him more than Phillip
Lindsay on passing downs. He received one fewer carry but
5 targets to Lindsayís 1.
was back, seemingly healthy. He did find the endzone but failed
to produce against an awful Falcons defense (18-41, 1-13-1)
on 61% of the snaps.
Ekeler played 59% of the snaps while Melvin Gordon played
on 53%. Ekeler was used primarily in the passing game, lining
up often as a wide receiver. He finished as the leading receiver
(7-118-1). Gordon received 11 more carries than Ekeler but produced
only 16 carries for 32 yards. It seems that Ekeler will remain
the better fantasy option, particularly in negative game scripts.
returned to prominence in Week 7, playing 57% of the snaps compared
Williamsí 40%. Jones received 12 carries while Williams
only received 3. Overall he out-produced Williams, 83 yards
to 31. It seems they will continue to trade off playing a major
role, or that the hot hand will continue to be featured. It
is a tough situation for fantasy owners, but generally Jones
is the RB to own.
played on 52% of the Dolphins snaps, while Kenyan
Drake played on 41% and Ballage played on 7%. The coaching
staff is liking what theyíre seeing out of Walton, and his increased
snaps are leading to increased touches (15 touches in Week 7
to Drakeís 9). If he continues to trend toward getting the lionís
share of the work, he could be an excellent addition for a late-season
push. Waltonís usage the last three weeks have been 25%, 42%,
and 52%, showing a nice upward trend.
played on 51% of the Ravens snaps, while Gus
Edwards played on 37%. Ingram out-touched Edwards 13 to
8, but had only 18 more yards. Ingram has not been particularly
effective on the ground of late, and Edwards has averaged more
yards per carry. Keep an eye on whether the Ravens staff might
begin to give Edwards additional work.
Hyde (40%) and Jordan
Howard (38%) saw their snap share decrease due to a negative
game script in Week 7. Keep in mind that if the Texans or Eagles
fall behind, those runners will see less work. They are best
to start in easier matchups.
Slayton both played virtually every snap for the Giants,
in a game they trailed throughout. Tate received 11 targets
(6-80) but Slayton only received 2 (2-28). He is either not
ready to take over this number of snaps or QB Daniel
Jones is not up to the task of getting him the ball. Either
way, Slayton should be avoided while Tate (and Shepard) should
see the majority of targets moving forward.
Mike Williams played the most snaps of all Chargers
receivers (95%). He was targeted 6 times (4-47), while Keenan
Allen was targeted 11 times. Until Rivers starts playing better,
no Chargers wideout can be counted on with confidence.
Alex Erickson saw a season-high snap rate of 94%
this week. The usage is now a trend, as his last three weeks
have been 22%, 79%, 94%. In Week 7 he received 14 targets
and caught 8 for 137 yards and will be a very popular pick
up on the wire this week. Since the Bengals will likely be
trailing every game, Erickson should be on your radar.
Kenny Stills returned from injury and played 94%
of the snaps due to Will Fuller leaving early with an injury
(hamstring). Stills was clearly the next man up and finished
with 4 catches for 105 yards. Heís worth an add as Fuller
is expected to be out multiple weeks.
Dante Pettis was a tale of two stats in Week 7. On
one hand, his rising usage trend continued, as he played 92%
of the snaps. On the other hand, he posted zero catches. The
sloppy conditions certainly played a factor but it lack of
involvement was very disheartening. Kendrick Bourne was the
other starter (89%) and caught 3 passes for 69 yards. While
Pettis seems like the more talented player, he is not showing
it in the stats column.
Auden Tate played 90% of the snaps as Tate, Erickson,
and Boyd played virtually every snap. The Bengals stuck with
11 personnel most of the game and it seems likely that if/when
A.J. Green returns from injury, Tate will be sent to the bench.
Preston Williams played the most snaps among Dolphins
wide receivers (90%), and was targeted 8 times (6-82). With
Ryan Fitzpatrick at the helm, Williams is a decent bye-week
Emmanuel Sanders once again played almost every snap
(88%). He caught 5 passes for 60 yards, in a putrid offensive
showing by the Broncos. If he can stay healthy and Flacco
can come back from this terrible game, he will be useful with
that kind of snap share.
Tyreek Hill returned to full-time work, playing 87%
of the snaps. He will struggle to put up numbers with Matt
Moore at the helm, but since he can take any catch to the
house, he is still a must-start.
The Rams played less 11 personnel than they typically
do, so Brandin Cooks led the way among receivers with 78%
of the snaps. Woods was at 76% and Kupp was at 62%. The Rams
are working to get Gerald Everett on the field more, playing
more 12 personnel with both Everett and Tyler Higbee on the
field. While that is good news for Everett owners, it hurts
the owners of all three Rams wide receivers.
Trevor Davis led the way among Raider receivers with
a 76% snap share. He only produced 2-26, with Keelan Doss
(3-54) leading all wide receivers. Tight end Darren Waller
is likely the only receiving option worth owning on the Raiders.
Anthony Millerís usage continues to trend higher,
as he played 75% of snaps and saw 9 targets (5-64). Taylor
Gabriel had only 1 catch for 6 yards, so it seems Miller has
jumped over him on the depth chart.
Although Larry Fitzgerald had only 1 reception, his
usage did not change. The wet conditions in New York prevented
the Cardinals from passing much.
After Adam Thielen was injured, Olabisi Johnson took
his place and played on 71% of the snaps. He received 8 targets
and caught 4 for 40 yards and a touchdown. If Thielen remains
out, consider giving Johnson a look.
Danny Amendolaís snaps jumped up from 34% in
Week 6 to 71% in Week 7, likely because he is now fully healthy.
He caught 8 balls for 105 yards. The Vikings basically took
Kenny Golladay away (only 1 reception), so this sort of production
wonít continue, but Amendola is a worthy option in a
We are seeing a downward trend in Cole Beasleyís
usage. He played 86% of snaps in Week 4, then 65% in Week
5, and now 55% in Week 7 (bye in Week 6). That is concerning;
keep an eye on whether the trend continues or he bounces back
up next week. They may have been trying to get Duke Williams
(54%) more snaps. If those two are splitting reps, it hurts
both of their values.
Zach Pascal played on only 47% of the Colts snaps
but led the team in receiving (6-106-2). The Colts may have
found their No.2 receiver, although Chester Rogers (2-24)
still played more snaps than Pascal (54%) and Deon Cain (no
catches) played on 42%. If the coaching staff bumps Pacalís
snaps up, he could be a very useful player down the stretch.
Hunter Henry was back to full-time snaps in Week 7
(91%) and played well (6-97 on 8 targets). He is a premier tight
end to own for the rest of the season.
Although Evan Engram played on 83% of the Giantsí
snaps, he was ineffective, dropping a number of passes and
finishing with only 1 catch for 6 yards on 5 targets.
Delanie Walker injured his ankle, so Jonnu Smith
saw 83% of the snaps and finished with 3 catches for 64 yards.
If Walker misses time, Smith could be an excellent pick up
for those who need tight end help.
Eric Ebron saw only 42% of the snaps while Jack Doyle
saw 76%, but Ebron out-produced Doyle. Both are difficult
to trust in this ball-control offense with multiple weapons.
Ironically Kyle Rudolph saw his lowest snap share
of the season (75%), but had by far his best game (5-58-1
on 6 targets). Meanwhile, Irv Smith also saw 6 targets and
had 5 catches for 60 yards. Both saw more targets due to Thielen
being out, and the coaching staff could include the tight
ends in the game plan more going forward.
Gerald Everett played on 74% of snaps and has become
a great weekly start with the usage heís seeing. The
Rams seem focused on getting him on the field more, so he
should continue to be a useful option.
Jacob Hollister played on 51% of snaps and Luke Willson
(whom most assumed would be the starter with Will Dissly out)
played on 47%. Hollister received 6 targets (3-20) and Willson
only received 1. Both should be avoided until one busts out
with a big game.