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NFL Draft

Fantasy Football: 20 Thoughts Recapping Week 7

  • The Draft Network
  • October 25, 2020
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Week 7 was one of the most exciting weeks of football in recent memory. Lions vs. Falcons and Browns vs. Bengals had absolutely sensational finishes, Davante Adams nearly put up 200 receiving yards against the Texans, and the Jets even looked good for about 10 minutes. The memorable week of real-life football led to many memorable fantasy moments as well. 

Before we turn the page to Monday Night Football and then the start of Week 8, here are my 20 fantasy football takeaways from Sunday, ranked in no particular order. Please note, this article will be updated with the final note after Sunday Night Football.

  1. DAVANTE ADAMS: Adams had his second 40-plus point fantasy performance of the season, nearly single-handedly winning matchups for his fantasy managers. Adams caught 13 of his 16 targets for 196 yards and two scores. When healthy, Adams is the No. 1 fantasy wide receiver, period. I said that prior to the season, so that’s not a statement on Michael Thomas’ health, either. On a per-game basis, Adams is consistently a top option. There’s no actionable advice here—you’re never sitting him—but it’s something to keep in mind as you deal with some of his potential injury frustrations either later this season or in 2021.
  2. BRANDIN COOKS: I’ve now fully bought into the Cooks bounce-back season. After an inconsistent first month in Houston, he’s put together three really solid games in a row—with his previous two being elite. His 7/60/0 game on Sunday might not be eye-popping, but in context it’s really nice to see. He’ll be ranked as a WR3 at worst moving forward as long as he’s healthy. It appears all three of Houston’s top receivers can be productive simultaneously.
  3. DIONTAE JOHNSON: The return of Johnson was a huge boon for the Steelers offense. Even with JuJu Smith-Schuster’s big game (more on that later), Johnson was really the player that made Pittsburgh’s offense tick early on. He finished with nine catches on a team-high 15 targets for 80 yards and two touchdowns. He’s the WR1 in Pittsburgh and should be the highest-ranked Steelers pass-catcher going forward when healthy. With Smith-Schuster on an expiring contract, Johnson is a great player to have in dynasty formats, too. 
  4. JUJU SMITH-SCHUSTER: This was the game Smith-Schuster managers have been waiting for. He got 14 targets, catching nine for 85 yards. He was never to the “droppable” point, as frustrated as some were with his performance. He’s not going to contend for weekly WR1 status, but he’ll sit somewhere between low-end WR2 and mid-level WR3 range most weeks moving forward. Hopefully you either didn’t panic or bought low. 
  5. ANTONIO GIBSON: No Washington running back had rushed for even 60 yards so far this season. Then Gibson obliterated that mark against the Cowboys on Sunday. Gibson ran for a whopping 128 rushing yards and a score, just dominating Dallas’ defense all game long. His 20 carries were a season high by seven, and hopefully this is the start of some more work for Gibson going forward. Washington is on bye next week, but Gibson has a good matchup against the Giants in Week 9. After a couple of trying weeks in Weeks 5 and 6, Gibson reminded his fantasy managers why they liked him so much in the first place. He’ll stay in RB2 territory upon his return to the field.
  6. AMARI COOPER/CEEDEE LAMB: The Cowboys are an absolute mess right now. They’ve looked terrible on defense all season, but have been abysmal on offense too without quarterback Dak Prescott. Now, Andy Dalton suffered a head injury on Sunday and the immediate future of the starting quarterback position is up in the air. Cooper is still a weekly starter because he’s finding a way to be productive regardless, and whoever the quarterback is will continue to force him the ball. As for Lamb, I’m more worried. He didn’t catch any of his season-low five targets and finished with 0.1 fantasy points after having just one rush for one yard. Who knows who the quarterback will be on Sunday Night Football, but consider Lamb a high-end WR4 for that matchup—a far cry from where he has been.
  7. DEVIN SINGLETARY: The Bills had an abysmal effort once again, but because they played the Jets they got away with it. Although they escaped with a touchdown-less victory, Singletary decimated fantasy managers with a 6.7-point performance in a great matchup. Singletary simply isn’t getting the work—or success—to warrant a top-25 spot at the position any longer. He’s a low-end RB3 until further notice, if any of his managers were even planning to start him again anyway. 
  8. D.J. MOORE: Moore had a two-touchdown game against the Saints, including a 74-yarder. Moore is putting together a very nice season thus far and has exactly 93 yards receiving in three straight weeks. He also has at least one 30-plus yard reception in five of the last six weeks, so he’s been far more boom than bust despite his target share being all over the place this season. With the Falcons on tap on Thursday night, Moore is a top-15 receiver for Week 8. 
  9. MIKE DAVIS: Davis had his first non-double-digit performance of the season with Christian McCaffrey out in what could be his final game as the Panthers’ starter. It’s possible McCaffrey makes his return next week, relegating Davis to a much smaller role. While Davis had an awesome month-long run, the last two weeks prove that he is, indeed, not McCaffrey. Don’t drop him, even if McCaffrey is cleared for Week 8. I think it’s worth seeing how both backs are used and how healthy McCaffrey actually is first. Davis is worth a bench spot until we get those two aforementioned questions answered.
  10. MARQUEZ CALLAWAY: Callaway came into Week 7 with just five catches for 50 yards on the season, but took advantage of a greatly expanded workload with both Michael Thomas and Emmanuel Sanders out this week. He finished with eight catches on 10 targets for 75 receiving yards—leading the Saints in all three of those categories. If Thomas and Sanders are both out next week, Callaway may be worthy of a deep league play. If either is active, the Bears aren’t the matchup to attack and you can likely ignore Callaway next week. 
  11. BAKER MAYFIELD: Mayfield missed on each of his first five passes, which also included an interception. Then… HE WENT OFF. He went 22-of-23 for 297 yards and five (!) touchdowns the rest of the way to lead his team to victory. While this type of performance saved Mayfield from seven days of massive criticism, I’m still not putting him back in QB1 territory next week against the Raiders. He’ll be a fine play in 2QB/Superflex leagues, but don’t pay for this week’s performance next week. 
  12. HARRISON BRYANT: With Austin Hooper out, the rookie assumed the role of “very productive Browns tight end” this week. Bryant finished with 4/56/2 and was pretty involved in the offense as a whole. If Hooper misses next week’s game, Bryant will flirt with TE1 territory. If you need some tight end help or are rostering Hooper, Bryant is a solid fill-in option for Week 8. 
  13. A.J. GREEN: Now that I saw it again, I’m back in on Green. The veteran saw 13 targets on Sunday (tied with Tyler Boyd), his second consecutive game with double-digit targets. His 7/82/0 performance is enough for me to put him back in startable range for next week against the Titans. He’s been getting the looks most of the season, but now he’s finally starting to be productive with them. 
  14. D’ANDRE SWIFT: It wasn’t the monster game many fantasy managers hoped for, but Swift had a perfectly fine 14.8 fantasy points against the Falcons. It was a bit disappointing to see Adrian Peterson getting more carries again, but neither were all that effective on the ground. However, Swift did have a massive run called back due to a penalty that would’ve made the box score look a lot different. The Colts are a really tough matchup next week, so Swift is more of a flex play than an RB2 in Week 8 but I’m still bullish about his second-half future. 
  15. JEFF WILSON/JAMYCAL HASTY: Despite many focusing exclusively on Jerick McKinnon and Hasty coming into Sunday, this was truly Wilson’s game against New England. He had 112 rushing yards and three touchdowns before being forced to leave with an ankle injury. His future status isn’t known at this time, but yet another injury opens the door for Hasty. The undrafted rookie looked explosive, as per usual, on his limited touches. One has to imagine that he’ll be the lead San Francisco back next week if Wilson is out, given McKinnon’s usage in Week 7. He’ll be a top waiver wire add this week.
  16. BUCCANEERS WRs: Yup, Chris Godwin is back in full force and is a weekly WR1 again. Nothing more to say there. As for Mike Evans, I’m not sure what to make of his season. He’s been held to one or two catches in four of his seven games this season, but he has six touchdowns. However, his three catches for 47 yards and no scores combined over the last two weeks with Tampa Bay’s offense exploding is angering many fantasy managers. We’re likely better off viewing Evans as a flex play moving forward, hoping for a touchdown. Scotty Miller had a really nice game and is in the glut of WR4s that could pop any week. 
  17. JAGUARS WRs: It feels like we’re all just guessing at this point. The season-long numbers look OK for a few receivers, but who has success outside of running back James Robinson on any given week is completely unclear. I wouldn’t drop D.J. Chark or Laviska Shenault, but they also don’t necessarily need to be in your lineup when the Jaguars return from their Week 8 bye. There are too many productive fantasy receivers to keep throwing the Jaguars’ pass-catchers out there without extensive research. 
  18. JUSTIN HERBERT: Welcome to your comfy spot inside of QB1 territory, Justin. Herbert had another sensation game on Sunday, throwing for 347 yards and three touchdowns (while also rushing for 68 yards and a score on the ground) against the Jaguars. He’s been oscillating in and out of QB1 territory in recent weeks but now he’s there to stay. With the Broncos, Raiders, and Dolphins on tap over the next three weeks, Herbert is a must-start going forward.
  19. PATRIOTS PLAYERS: You’re not playing a New England position player next week unless forced to in a two-quarterback league. Period. No one can be trusted right now. 
  20. TYLER LOCKETT: Any worries about Lockett after two unspectacular performances in a row were assuaged on Sunday Night Football. Lockett broke out in a humongous way, catching a whopping 15 passes for 200 yards and three touchdowns. He was the lifeblood of the Seattle offense. According to ESPN Stats & Info, Lockett is the first player since 2011 (Calvin Johnson) to have at least 500 receiving yards and seven touchdowns in his team's first six games. Put Lockett right back into WR1 territory next week against the 49ers and don't drop D.K. Metcalf too far after one bad performance. He made the defensive play of the game, after all.

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