Week 7 Roundtable
Welcome to the Fighting Chance Roundtable! Each week we will be asking our panel of Fighting Chance Staff a series of questions for the upcoming slate of NFL games. Each person will give you the best answer to the question in order to help set your lineups this week, both season long and DFS. This week we have Steve Rapin (@fantasygeek37 on Twitter), Kacey Kasem (@thekaceykasem), Jim Day (@fantasytaz), Brian Drake (@drakefantasy), and myself, Ryan Hallam (@fightingchance). Please dear reader, enjoy the Week 7 Roundtable!
Sleeper of the Week
Kacey’s Pick - Duke Johnson Jr., RB, Cleveland Browns. I like most Browns players this week as they take on Tampa Bay. The Buccaneers give up plenty of yards to pass-catching backs, so I look for Johnson to have a big game. Yes, Nick Chubb will get his shot to shine, but Johnson has shown to be a reliable asset for the Browns. He's owned in 53.2% of ESPN leagues, so if you're in need of a solid flex player, Johnson is the man.
Jim’s Pick - Damion Ratley, WR, Cleveland Browns. Ratley came out of nowhere in Week 6 to quietly catch 6 passes for 82 yards on 8 targets. With Rashard Higgins still out and Antonio Callaway stinking the place up, Ratley gives them a receiver who can actually catch. This week he faces a terrible Tampa Bay secondary and should be good for another double-digit week.
Brian’s Pick - Keke Coutee, WR, Houston Texans. After getting lit up by Cole freaking Beasley for 101yds and 2 TD's the rookie will get to torch the Jags overmatched slot corner. I see Coutee getting double digit targets and scoring this week.
Steve’s Pick - Jermaine Kearse, WR, New York Jets. With Quincy Enunwa out, Jermaine Kearse took over the slot role last week and hauled in nine catches for 94 yards on ten targets. Robbie Anderson and Terrelle Pryor are now banged up and Kearse could be in for all the work he can handle from the slot, which is a place you can attack the Vikings.
Ryan’s Pick - Tre’Quan Smith, WR, New Orleans Saints. The rookie had a huge game last week with over 100 yards and two scores. Now, he got exactly what he needed, and that was an injury to Ted Ginn. While Cameron Meredith will also be a factor, Smith is a very exciting playmaker and I think he will be a good option going forward.
Bust of the Week
Jim’s Pick - Deshaun Watson, QB, Houston Texans – Watson is coming off his worst week in his short career against a decent defense, but this week he travels to Jacksonville to take on a very tough Jaguars’ defense. It really looked like he was more limited by his chest injury last week then the team let on. He is practicing fully so far this week, but it will be hard to trust him behind that porous o-line.
Steve’s Pick - Andrew Luck, QB, Indianapolis Colts. Andrew Luck is currently the QB7 in fantasy and people are going to see a matchup against the Bills and things are going to start “moving” downstairs. However, the Bills draw teams into slow games and with Derek Anderson starting at quarterback for Buffalo, I can see them running the ball a lot and that could mean fewer opportunities for Luck to rack up numbers. The Bills haven’t allowed opponents to score more than 22 points in each of the last four weeks, and that included good offensive teams like Green Bay, Minnesota, Houston and Tennessee (ok, three out of four good offenses), and I can see them holding down Luck and the Colts in Week 7 as well.
Kacey’s Pick - Drew Brees, QB, New Orleans Saints. I absolutely hate putting him on this list, but here we are. Brees is an amazing quarterback, and we all know that to be true. He has beaten every NFL team except the team they take on this week (Baltimore Ravens). They won't be in a dome, and that hinders Brees a bit. Also, I think the run game is going to be relied on heavily in this game, so I don't see Brees airing it out.
Brian’s Pick - Kenny Golladay, WR, Detroit Lions. Xavien Howard is legit folks. The Dolphins corner can lock people down. I expect him to matchup on Golladay and force Matthew Stafford to throw elsewhere.
Ryan’s Pick – Cam Newton, QB, Carolina Panthers. Eagles defense hasn’t looked good at times, but they have been better the past couple of weeks of keeping touchdowns off the board through the air. I think they limit Cam to 225 through the air and 25 yards on the ground and a single touchdown.
Which Quarterback do you like more rest of season? Carson Wentz or Andrew Luck?
Brian Says – Carson Wentz. Wentz for me and not because I'm an Eagles fan. Better weapons, better arm, better coach. Give me Wentz to continue improving. I don't trust Luck to remain healthy or have good enough weapons to outscore Wentz.
Kacey Says – Andrew Luck. They're both pretty solid quarterbacks from a fantasy standpoint, but I like Luck's fantasy consistency so far. Even when he hasn't been playing well, he still finds a way to get you fantasy points. I'm never high on Luck, but I have to admit that's who I'd pick of the two.
Steve Says - Andrew Luck. This answer honestly surprised me, but I have to look at what Luck has done. He’s thrown for 380 or more yards in four of his six games this season and has 16 passing scores in those games. The Colts defense will force him to keep chucking the ball around to stay in games, so while I’m not in love with him against the Bills this week, I think he is the better option going forward.
Jim Says – Andrew Luck. Trying to pick between Luck and Wentz for the rest of the season is tough. Luck is averaging 1 ½ points more a game than Wentz, so no big difference there. Both are averaging 298 yards a game, so again nothing to differentiate them here. So here is where the difference comes in: Luck is averaging 48 passing attempts and 2.67 touchdowns a game to Wentz’s 39.5 passing attempts and 2 TDs a game. Plus, Luck is on the verge of getting his best receiver, TY Hilton, back this week, which should only help to increase his productivity. Based on the additional attempts and better TD production I would go with Luck.
Ryan Says – Carson Wentz. Luck has been far better than I thought he would be this season, and while he can’t throw the long ball, he is having a great year. However, it feels like Wentz gets better every week as he is fully recovered from his knee injury from last year, and he is looking like the MVP he could have been in 2017. I won’t say that Luck hasn’t been good, but I just like Wentz better.
Which injured running back do you trust more going forward? Dalvin Cook or Leonard Fournette?
Steve Says - Dalvin Cook. With the Jags acquiring Carlos Hyde in a surprising move, that tells me that Fournette is hurt more than we think, so I’m going to go with Dalvin Cook. Even if they both come back at the same time, with the Hyde move, I can see them limiting Fournette’s touches while Cook should get a bulk of the work in Minnesota once healthy.
Brian Says – Dalvin Cook. Can I just drink a bottle of Dran-O at this point? Neither are going to help you this year. I truly believe BOTH wind up on IR. The Jaguars investing in Carlos Hyde tells you all you need to know about the situation. Cook should be shut down too.
Jim Says – Dalvin Cook. Between Cook and Fournette I am staying with my original choice before the season started and that’s Cook. Both are talented running backs but are also big injury risks. There is some speculation that Fournette may sit until after the Jags’ Week 9 bye because of the signing of Jamaal Charles. Cooks practiced in full on Wednesday this week, but he did that last week too before not playing. Hopefully the extra week gets him back into the saddle this week. I also like him more because of the better offense around him, which should open up some running lanes for him. But this s a very tough choice. Comes down to who plays the most remaining games.
Kacey Says – Dalvin Cook. I picked Cook prior to the Carlos Hyde trade, so I'm not just picking him because Fournette has more competition. I've always been a fan of Cook, and when healthy, I just love his game. Hamstring issues are nothing to play around with, so I know it could be a while until he sees the field again. Latavius Murray doesn't do anything for me, so I look forward to a Cook return.
Ryan Says – Dalvin Cook. I was huge on both guys before the season, and on more than one team I have both. UGH! Fournette to me seems like the bigger injury problem, especially after the team went and traded for Carlos Hyde. I’m not saying I am brimming with confidence in Cook either right now, but out of these two choices, give me Dalvin.
Which end of the roster receiver do you like best? Albert Wilson, Tyrell Williams or Jermaine Kearse?
Kacey Says – Albert Wilson. Did I only pick him because saying “Bert Alert” is fun? No, but that helps. Anyway, I like Wilson's chances of staying fantasy relevant. He's had some big games this year, and I like what he has been able to do. Also, it is now Brocktober, and I believe Brock Osweiler is going to get him the ball.
Steve Says - Jermaine Kearse. I hate to use Kearse twice in the same article, but I think he’s the pick here. I think he gets the most consistent production going forward, and while Wilson and Williams may have a big game here and there, the floor on Kearse gives him the nod for me.
Jim Says – Jermaine Kearse. The choice between Albert Wilson, Tyrell Williams and Jermaine Kearse is like trying to determine which zit will pop faster, there is just no good choice. Wilson had his best week of the season with a backup QB, but he has had 2 other decent weeks. Tyrell Williams had a great week 7 but before that he didn’t top 10 fantasy points. Kearse is a solid pickup, but more likely is just a rental until Enunwa gets back, but until that happens Kearse is my pick.
Once Enunwa left the game with his ankle injury Kearse stepped right into the slot, where he had his best season ever last year. Enunwa could miss up to 4 weeks and that is with no setbacks. I look for him to be a solid play until Enunwa comes back and right now it is prime time for your fantasy teams to get right and Kearse is a great pickup right now.
Brian Says – Jermaine Kearse. Give me Jermaine Kearse if he can remain in the slot for the Jets. His targets should remain and Sam Darnold loves the short to intermediate passing game. He's a consistent producer for fantasy going forward.
Ryan Says – Jermaine Kearse. I like both Wilson and Kearse, but with the recent events I have to say Kearse. Quincy Enunwa remains out, the team cut Terrelle Proyr, and Kearse is fresh at the moment. He is a quality possession receiver and Sam Darnold looks like a legit quarterback. While I like Wilson, I think right now that Kearse will be a consistent contributor on a weekly basis.