Week 7 Sit Start Advice

Wednesday, Oct 19, 2016 at 12:00 pm ET

This is the Fantasy Football Nerd's look at the best and worst matchups for Week 7 of the 2016 NFL season. Decisions are based upon the FFN rankings and matchup analysis. Given the known conditions, these matchups are the ones to watch and/or avoid.

Please Note: This list does not generally include the elite players that you are going to start regardless of matchup. You don't need us to tell you to start Aaron Rodgers, Rob Gronkowski, or Antonio Brown. Instead, we take a look at other players on your team that we believe either have great matchups or should be avoided for multiple reasons. Factors like opposing defense, performance trending, and peer comparisons may influence our decisions.

Start 'em Blake Bortles (JAC, QB)
You probably drafted Blake Bortles fairly high and have been disappointed with his performance so far this year. That should change this week against the NFL's worst pass-ranked Oakland defense. Rivers, Flacco, Ryan, and Brees averaged 25 fantasy points against them.
Start 'em Andy Dalton (CIN, QB)
The 26th-ranked Cleveland secondary gave up almost 28 points last week to Mariota and opposing QBs are averaging 2.6 touchdowns and 21.5 fantasy points against them each week. That's great news for Andy Dalton owners making him a must-start.
Start 'em Doug Martin (TB, RB)
UPDATE: Martin suffered a setback on his injured hamstring and is not expected to play. Rodgers can be started. Remember when nobody could run on the 49ers and only Marshawn Lynch topped 100 yards against them in an entire season? Yeah, that team is long gone. This week: no Charles Sims, a 3.7 ypc Jacquizz Rodgers, and a matchup against the NFL's worst rush defense means that a healthy(ish) Doug Martin is in must-start status.
Start 'em Spencer Ware (KC, RB)
The timeshare in Kansas City wasn't equally split last week even though all indications were that Jamaal Charles was "110%". There's little reason to expect that to change which is likely why we see Spencer Ware inside the Top 10 this week facing a New Orleans defense giving up 117 yards on the ground and more than 21 fantasy points over the last three weeks.
Start 'em Jeremy Maclin (KC, WR)
We recommended a start for him last week and he disappointed us, but we're going to give him another shot this week against a Saints defense that has given up the 2nd-most yards through the air. Maclin is ranked 13th this week (std scoring) making him a high WR2.
Start 'em Julian Edelman (NE, WR)
The TE duo in New England of Gronk and Bennett have proven to be too much for defenses the last two weeks, but Edelman is still getting his dinks and dunks. Only two other teams give up more yards through the air than Pittsburgh, so while we're confident that Tom Brady will drop back and throw quite a bit, it remains to be seen how he'll pass those targets around.
Start 'em Hunter Henry (SD, TE)
The surprise TE is on a roll and should remain in your lineups in what will likely be a shoot out against the red hot Falcons. Over the last four games, Atlanta has given up almost 13 standard fantasy points (19 in PPR) each week to opposing tight ends.
Start 'em Delanie Walker (TEN, TE)
Ranked 6th this week is Delanie Walker who faces an Indy defense that just gave up 14.5 points (20.5 PPR) to C.J. Fiedorowicz last week. We expect Mariota to look Walker's way often making him a must-start this week.
Start 'em Minnesota Vikings (MIN, DEF)
Fresh off a bye, the Vikings defense should pick up where they left off even against a potent Eagles offense. Minnesota's defensive line ranks 1st in the NFL with 17 sacks and 4th in total tackles. They could be the best defense in the NFL this week.
Start 'em Mason Crosby (GB, K)
This Thursday night, the Bears will visit Green Bay in one of the NFL's oldest rivalries. With Lacy and Starks out, and an Aaron Rodgers that resembles a Jekyll/Hyde situation, Crosby could be called upon to put quite a few points on the board - something he's been fantastic at doing this season.
Sit 'em Russell Wilson (SEA, QB)
It might sound very strange, but if you have another option this week, sitting Russell Wilson is a real possibility. Coming off a disappointing fantasy day last week (270 yds, 0 TD, 88.8 QB rating), Wilson is ranked 18th this week on FFN against an Arizona defense that ranks 3rd in fewest yards allowed.
Sit 'em Carson Palmer (ARI, QB)
Ranked 21st this week among all QBs, Carson Palmer is only startable in 2-QB leagues. Seattle has been brutal on QBs this season giving up the 5th-fewest yards and just a pedestrian 14 fantasy points to them.
Sit 'em Jay Ajayi (MIA, RB)
If you picked up Jay Ajayi off the waivers hoping for a similar 204-yard rushing day, forget it. While he had the bulk of the touches even with Arian Foster's return, the Miami backfield is tough to gauge and this week's matchup with the Bills is tough as they've given up just 8 fantasy points to RBs the last 3 weeks.
Sit 'em Ryan Mathews (PHI, RB)
Ranked 35th this week among RBs is Ryan Mathews who was a bust last week. He won't fare much better against a Minnesota defense that gives up the 4th-fewest yards per game to the position and surrendered an average of 8 fantasy points to Lamar Miller, Eddie Lacy, and DeMarco Murray.
Sit 'em DeAndre Hopkins (HOU, WR)
Rule number 1 in fantasy is that you don't sit your studs, and while Hopkins is still going to be in your lineup, control your expectations. A gunslinger-mentality from Brock Osweiler combined with the shutdown defense of the Broncos (no team allows fewer passing yards than Denver) makes DeAndre Hopkins a tough play this week.
Sit 'em Demaryius Thomas (DEN, WR)
See the Hopkins note above. It's so crazy to see both Hopkins and Demaryius Thomas ranked as WR3's on FFN this week, but it's really the same situation. Houston ranks 2nd (just behind Denver) in fewest yards allowed through the air. Combine with shaky QB play and Thomas could struggle.
Sit 'em Kyle Rudolph (MIN, TE)
Ranked 19th among tight ends this week on FFN is Kyle Rudolph who has had a pretty solid year so far. Fresh off a bye, you might expect him to be productive, but that will be difficult against a Philly defense that gives up the 4th-fewest passing yards and gave Vernon Davis, Jesse James, Zach Miller, and Gary Barnidge a whopping 3.75 average fantasy points.
Sit 'em Coby Fleener (NO, TE)
Coming off a fantastic game last week where he found the endzone twice, fantasy owners might be tempted to keep Coby Fleener in their lineups, but Kansas City is going to be a tough matchup for him. KC has given up an average of two and a half fantasy points and just 1 endzone trip to TEs this year.
Sit 'em Philadelphia Eagles (PHI, DEF)
Ranked 17th among all defenses this week are the Eagles against a Minnesota team without their star running back or quarter back. Who would have guessed that this would have been possible? The Vikings have managed to move the ball effectively both on the ground and through the air making this a tough one for the Philly defense.
Sit 'em Steven Hauschka (SEA, K)
One of the best fantasy kickers over the past few years has been Steven Hauschka, but even he's likely to struggle against an Arizona defense that has given up just 5.3 fantasy points to opposing kickers over the course of the season.

Join the Discussion

Bob J CommentedOct 19, 2016 11:00 am

It does not look like Hyde will even play this week, not sure why he is listed as a Start em.

Nerd CommentedOct 19, 2016 11:00 am

Good catch! Thank you.

Iso CommentedOct 19, 2016 11:00 am

same as Doug Martin...looks like Rodgers will get the start this week, does he make the start em list?

Iso CommentedOct 19, 2016 11:00 am

same as Doug Martin...looks like Rodgers will get the start this week, does he make the start em list?

RaiderLuv4LIFE CommentedOct 21, 2016 11:00 am

Do you know if T. Pryor is hurt?

Nerd CommentedOct 21, 2016 11:00 am

It doesn't look good for Pryor, but nothing official yet.

RaiderLuv4LIFE CommentedOct 22, 2016 11:00 am

Should I drop A.Dalton and pick up M.Mariota?! I have Carr now.

Nerd CommentedOct 22, 2016 11:00 am

Rather have Dalton

RaiderLuv4LIFE CommentedOct 24, 2016 11:00 am

Man! I listened to those guys on NFL network and I benched Forte!!

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