I don’t know about you, but last Sunday had to have been one of the most backward, upside down and flat out frustrating days in the NFL in recent memory. And really, the same could probably be said for this season as a whole thus far. Oh well, this is where, if we were quarterbacks, coaches would tell us to have a short memory and to get back out there and sling it. Fortunately, we get to do just that as we bear down for Fanduel week seven.
Matt Ryan ($8,700) vs. New England
We could go with either Ryan or Brady in this juicy Sunday night rematch of last year’s unforgettable Super Bowl, but I lean towards taking the $500 discount with Ryan. This game has opened with 54.5 over/under, with Atlanta being four point dogs on the road and should be a shootout. Ryan will need to be at his best to match and exceed what TB12 is going to do. If your’e one for taking a stroll down narrative street, then Ryan should be the choice as you know he’ll be out for blood after what happened in the Super Bowl.
Marcus Mariota ($8,200) vs. Cleveland
Assuming Mariota does not have setback with his hamstring between Monday night against Indianapolis and Sunday in Cleveland, then he could be the signal caller of choice this week. Cleveland is 31st in pass defense DVOA, and has given up 24 or more points in four out of six games thus far, with two of those being 30-plus. Additionally, Super Mario seems to have made it a priority this year to use his legs more, meaning he’s always in play for a rushing score.
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Ben Roethlisberger ($7,200) vs. Cincinnati
Big Ben is strictly a tournament play this week (and probably for the rest of the season, actually), just because we simply don’t know what we’re getting with him. Traditionally, he plays much better at home, and these games against Cincinnati can get quite competitive. I won’t let him near my cash games, but I’m not hating him in this spot this week.
Brett Hundley ($6,500) vs. New Orleans
Here is your cash game punt for the week. Hundley didn’t look horrible in a dire situation last week after ARod went down – against one of the best defenses in the league in Minnesota, by the way, and he gets a much softer matchup this week. This game has opened with 48-point over/under with New Orleans being the rare road favorite. Hundley has a great shot to toss a few scores here and could probably pay off his tag in his sleep.
Le’Veon Bell ($9,700) vs. Cincinnati
What can I say? With DJ sidelined, Bell is far and away the back in the game. The matchup against Cincy isn’t a cakewalk, but then again neither was last week’s against Kansas City.
LeSean McCoy ($7,900) vs. Tampa Bay
McCoy should be fresh coming off the bye week, and gets a Tampa defense that just got shredded by 89 yr old Adrian Peterson. Shady is averaging almost 24 touches per game and will, of course, be the focal point of the Buffalo attack.
Jay Ajayi ($7,400) vs. New York Jets
Ajayi, and the entire Dolphins offense, really, have been huge disappointments. However, if there’s something we can fall back on with Ajayi it’s volume. And volume is king. He’s currently seventh in the league in carries with 102, and is seeing just over 22 touches per game. Miami is a three-point home favorite against the Jets, and the game itself has a low over/under of just 38.5 points. Which points to a lot of positive game script for Ajayi.
Jerrick McKinnon ($7,000) vs. Baltimore
In his two games as the starting running back since Dalvin Cook’s injury, McKinnon has seen 32 carries and 12 targets. It’s absolutely clear who the Vikings favor in this backfield, and McKinnon’s versatility will likely lead to more work as the season goes on. Baltimore has struggled recently against opposing running backs, and Minnesota is a nice five-point favorite in this one.
Joe Mixon ($5,600) @ Pittsburgh
Over his past three games Mixon has averaged 19 total touches, signaling that the Bengals coaching staff is finally recognizing that they need to feature him in their backfield. I don’t love the matchup with Pittsburgh, but they have been gashed recently and these games tend to be super competitive. If Cincinnati is wise, they will lean on their talented runner and use him to help balance out their attack. His price is outstanding and he could easily pay off that tag.
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Julio Jones ($8,800) vs. New England
Antonio Brown is, of course, in play at home this week, but I’m going to lead off with Julio. For starters, while it’s usually not a good idea to fall for coach speak, this time I fully believe Dan Quinn when he says they have to start getting Jones the ball more. Like, duh! The 55-point over/under in this contest with the Patriots is some sweet action. The Pats defense has been a straight sieve this year, to the tune of the 32nd ranked pass defense. I love him for all formats this week.
Larry Fitzgerald ($7,500) @ LA Rams
Holy price hike, Batman! After last week’s monster 10/138/1 it was bound to happen. He’s probably priced at his ceiling now, but can’t ignore the 10-plus targets per game. In fact, he has yet to see less than six targets in a game, and has seen 10 or more in four out of six contests thus far. Wowzers. The Rams are a 3.5-point home favorite in a game that projects to be quite high scoring with a 47-point over/under. The Cards will need old man Fitz to do his thing once again.
Keenan Allen ($7,000) vs. Denver
Speaking of targets. Allen is right in step with Fitz, seeing just over 10 per game. In week one in the first round against Denver, Allen saw 10, including his lone touchdown on the year. We should see a similar workload once again on Sunday.
Jarvis Landry ($7,000) vs. New York Jets
What’s been the theme this week? Volume. Currently Landry is besting both Fitz and Allen with over 11 per game, and has seen double digits in all but one game so far. Upon last look the Jets were still #bad on defense, so I expect it will be business as usual for Landry this week. Rostering him – or any other Dolphin player – means you’re tied to Jay Cutler (gulp), but even smokin’ Jay can’t spoil this one.
Martavis Bryant ($5,400) vs. Cincinnati
This is a complete dart throw this week, but with all the rumors swirling around wether or not Bryant insisted a trade could leave us with squeaky wheel scenario. Big Ben has been taking regular shots down field to the explosive receiver, but thus far the two appear to not quite be on the same page. That could very well change this week. And at that price, why not throw that dart in some tournaments?
Gronk ($8,500) vs. Atlanta
Okay, okay, so a case could be made for Gronk every week. He transcends matchups. I don’t think he’s necessary in cash games, but the Patriots implied total of 29 makes rolling out Gronk in all formats awfully tempting. There’s something to be said for the safety – and upside – he brings.
Delanie Walker ($5,900) @ Cleveland
Many will likely be on Austin Sefarin-Jekins at the same price point this week given his recent performances, but Walker might actually be the nuts play at the position. Cleveland has surrendered the most catches to opposing tight ends, and rank 30th in defending them according to Football Outsiders DVOA.
Jimmy Graham ($5,800) @ New York Giants
After starting the year off rather slowly, Graham’s usage and production has been trending upwards. Since week three he’s seen 25 targets, has gone over 60 yards twice and found the end zone for the first time this year. The Giants are notorious for being weak against tight ends, and outside of Denver last week have allowed a touchdown to opposing tight ends in every game.
Hunter Henry ($5,200) vs. Denver
The HH train keeps rolling in week seven, as the Chargers are finally deploying him as they should be (or at least close to it). He’s seen eight and seven targets in back to back weeks, respectively, and has scored double digit fantasy points in three out of his last four. Denver got torched by Even Engram last week, and San Diego would be wise to continue the trend in attacking that stout Denver defense over the middle, where it might have a soft spot.
Jacksonville ($5,400) @ Indianapolis
Outside of not being at home this week, it’s hard not to love the Jags defense. They are first in sacks (23), first in interceptions (10), second in fumble recoveries (6), and second in touchdowns (4). The Colts struggle to run the ball, which means Jacoby Brissett will likely need drop back more times than he should, playing right into the strength of that nasty Jags defense.
Minnesota ($4,700) vs. Baltimore
The Vikings are in a great spot this weekend, facing a Baltimore offense, and, more specifically, Joe Flacco, who has thrown eight interceptions to just four touchdowns. The Vikes have allowed 17 or fewer points in four straight games, and Vegas loves them this week at home as a 5-point favorite in a projected low-scoring tilt (40-point over/under).
LA Chargers ($4,100) vs. Denver
The Chargers are my favorite tournament play this week. Denver has looked so flat on offense for weeks now, and their suspect offensive line will be going up against one of the most feared pass rushing duos in the league in Joey Bosa and Melvin Ingram.
Ryan Succop ($4,700) @ Cleveland
Tennessee is a nice 5.5-point favorite on the road this week, and the game itself has a 46-point over/under.