Buccaneers and Bills – Jameis Winston, QB
There are a few questions that we have lingering in our minds here with Winston in Week 7. The first is simply if Winston is going to be able to suit up period? After we get that answer, the next question is going to be how effective can he be while dealing with an AC joint sprain in his throwing shoulder? In case you haven’t noticed, having an issue with your throwing shoulder seems to be a problem in today’s NFL. Whether it’s Cam Newton‘s ineffectiveness or Andrew Luck‘s inability to play, it seems that a quarterback needs to be able to throw the ball in order to be productive. Weird, we know. Winston finds himself now dealing with an issue that could impact the rest of his season. How much does this issue effect Winston’s ability to hit his prime targets in DeSean Jackson and Mike Evans down field? The Bucs’ quarterback has huge value on the line as this could be a sign of things to come.
Titans and Browns – Eric Decker, WR
Last week, Decker had his best game since roughly Week 2 of 2016. The Titans desperately need a receiver on the outside as Delanie Walker and DeMarco Murray can only do so much on their own. Corey Davis has missed more time and is going to take a while to get acclimated to the pro speed on his return. Rishard Matthews has done his part with his 350 yards but he only has one score to show for it. Can Decker step up and provide both a secondary target on the outside for Marcus Mariota while providing a premier red zone body to throw to? Maybe he just needed some extra time to round into shape after last season’s injury and perhaps he’s ready to fully amp things up now. Another game with 80 yards with a bonus touchdown will have Decker on the rise.
Saints and Packers – Jordy Nelson, WR
Another week, another elite player lost for the season. Somewhere in this world, someone was given the bargain of the century when they somehow landed David Johnson, Odell Beckham, and Aaron Rodgers on draft day. With the millions and millions of drafts that take place, someone must have walked away as a fantasy Danny Ocean. Now, six weeks in, Danny Ocean is behind bars and the oil they once struck has gone dry. With Rodgers done now, the question becomes, does Jordy Nelson follow suit? Can Nelson maintain Top 10 totals on a weekly basis with Brett Hundley running the show? Nelson is no spring chicken at age 32 and has two serious injuries on his resume. He’s also not going to even the scales with pure athleticism or lightning speed as that’s not his game. He relies on his route running and field knowledge as his production is all timing based. Can Hundley get the timing right with Nelson or will Jordy have to wait until next season for another potential rebound?
Cardinals and Rams – Carson Palmer, QB
Last week, we questioned if Adrian Peterson had anything left to show us. And show us he did to the tune of 130 yards with two touchdowns. This week, we have a question for Carson Palmer. Can Palmer use the newly established run game to improve the passing game? Palmer has been throwing at an alarming rate for an almost 40-year old QB and he’s been getting straight-up walloped trying to get the passes away. Can the physical running ability of Peterson create a play action pass that hasn’t existed since David Johnson got hurt in Week 1? Palmer could see his attempts go down with his numbers actually going up as his efficiency could see a massive bump.
Bengals and Steelers – Martavis Bryant, WR
It’s not very often a team stands by a player in the way that Pittsburgh has over the past two years with Martavis Bryant, only for the player to turn the tables on them. There’s zero chance that these reports of Bryant requesting a trade are completely unfounded. They didn’t just fall out of the clear blue sky and land on the beat reporter’s desk. Bryant hasn’t been as involved as he’d like to be as he only has one score on the season. His yardage is respectable at a solid 230 yards but after playing all 6 games, you’d figure that his touchdowns would be triple what they are now. Can Bryant bounce back from all this negative publicity? Will Roethlisberger gel with a player he’s already called out before? Will the Steelers end up honoring his request and ship him off to a fantasy wasteland like the Browns or Jets? An elite game from Bryant would make all the off field grumblings and gripes quiet for a bit.