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THE DIVE: Week 7 – “Midseason Momentum”

Week 6 felt more “normal” as it was void of any last-minute game postponements due to COVID. It also packed quite a few surprising performances, some of which were positive and others that were head-scratching disappointments. Quarterbacks Matt Ryan, Deshaun Watson, Ryan Tannehill, Carson Wentz and Kyler Murray each exceeded expectations. Wide receivers Justin Jefferson and Julio Jones also were top performers, while running back Derrick Henry’s 264 total yards, two-touchdown performance made his case as potentially the best running back in the NFL. However, Aaron Rodgers, Alexander Mattison, Mike Gesicki, and a few other players expected to have solid outings, completely failed to show up.

Let’s take a dive into Week 7, which is the middle of the fantasy football regular season in most leagues Adjust your rosters accordingly as Baltimore, Minnesota, Indianapolis and Miami are on bye, and also keep ears perked up for any COVID related changes. Except for forecasted snow in the Kansas City at Denver game, the forecast appears clear and should not be a major factor in Week 7.

Joe Burrow, QB, Cincinnati

Cincinnati may be sitting at the bottom of the AFC North standings, but rookie quarterback Joe Burrow has been one of the major bright spots. After a hot start, Burrow has not thrown a touchdown pass over his last two contests, but expect that to change in Week 7. Cincinnati welcomes Cleveland, who allows the seventh-most fantasy points to opposing quarterbacks including Burrow’s 316-yards, three-touchdown gem in Week 2. If your quarterback is on bye or faces a difficult matchup, Burrow will be a top play this weekend.

Week 7 forecast: 275 passing yards, 2 TD; 15 rushing yards

Ronald Jones, RB, Tampa Bay

Before the season, it appeared that Tampa Bay would leverage several running backs in a committee. After injuries to LeSean McCoy and Leonard Fournette, Ronald Jones has emerged to claim the job as his own. If Fournette is healthy for Week 7, he’ll likely share in the workload, but this is Jones’ gig to lose now. Jones rumbled over Green Bay to earn his third consecutive 100-yard rushing game and added two scores. With a juicy road matchup on Sunday night, start Jones as an RB2 with high-upside against Las Vegas, who have given up the highest average points to opposing running backs.

Week 7 forecast: 100 total yards, TD

Christian Kirk, WR, Arizona

After a slow start, Christian Kirk has suddenly erupted. He caught an 80-yard touchdown pass on Monday Night Football and is averaging 82 receiving yards over his last two games. With a favorable home matchup against Seattle (who has surrendered the most fantasy points to opposing wide receivers,) Kirk is an intriguing WR3 or Flex. With several receivers on bye this week, Kirk could end up being a great play.

Week 7 forecast: 75 receiving yards, TD

Rob Gronkowski, TE, Tampa Bay

Historically, you would not find Gronkowski in “The Dive” as the future Hall of Fame tight end has always been a must-start. After returning from retirement to join Tampa Bay this season, his start has been a bit slower than expected. However, with Tampa Bay’s wideouts either sidelined or not 100% in recent weeks, Gronkowski is beginning to seize the opportunity. With eight catches from 14 targets for 130 yards and a score over his last two contests, Gronkowski may have significant fantasy value during the second-half of the season especially given the lack of depth at tight end and O.J. Howard done for the year. He continues to clean off the rust and show signs of a breakout, which may occur in Week 7 when Tampa Bay visits Las Vegas, who is only average defending the tight end.

Week 7 forecast: 60 receiving yards, TD

New York Giants D/ST

Claiming the New York Giants season thus far has been a disappointment is a huge understatement. However, they earned their first win in Week 6 and are still in contention in the historically bad NFC East. In addition, their defense has been solid with double-digit points earned over the last two games including five sacks, four forced turnovers and two defensive touchdowns. With a road matchup against division rival Philadelphia, who will be without Miles Sanders and Zach Ertz, consider the Giants defense this Thursday night.

Week 7 forecast: 12 points

About Marc Griffis

Marc Griffis has competed in fantasy football, baseball, and basketball leagues since 2005. Marc has written "The Dive" for Fantasy Sharks since 2010. Additionally, his expertise is featured in David Gonos' E-books "101 Fantasy Baseball Tips" and "101 Fantasy Football Tips". Lastly, Marc competed in the Fantasy Sports Trade Association SiriusXM Fantasy Baseball experts' league from 2012-2014.