After a solid Week 5 forecast on “The Dive,” I feel the time is now appropriate for a true confession. Yes, your fantasy sports writer who has provided a relatively successful list of predictions over the last six weeks is ready to come clean. Are you ready? Brace yourself and here goes.
In my own fantasy league, I dropped Devonta Freeman after Week 2. Whewwww!!! I said it and it feels like a heavyweight being lifted away. Can any other managers relate? After a disappointing first two weeks of the season where he averaged less than 2.0 yards per carry and appeared to be the Atlanta’s backup running back to Tevin Coleman, I needed tight end depth as I was carrying Antonio Gates. I decided to drop Freeman for Dwayne Allen. Yes, you read that correctly. Since Week 3, Freeman has given me the fantasy “middle finger” with nine touchdowns and nearly 700 total yards. How the standings would be different if I did not make that transaction!
My advice to you is to be careful who you drop. As tempting as it is to add tight end depth or steam another defense, be very cautious on dropping certain positions, especially running back. Don’t get “Devonta Freeman’d”! Now that you are done wiping your tears from my sad, tear-jerking story, I recommend that you take a dive with me as we crack into Week 7!
It has been awhile since the New York Jets offense was worth discussing. Although the Jets offense has been very productive with weapons including Chris Ivory, Eric Decker, and new additional Brandon Marshall this season, their defense should receive ample credit as well. Their stout defense has helped the Jets rank near the top of offensive time of possession and also lead the entire league in least points allowed.
Veteran quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick may not be the next Joe Namath, but he has been decent with at least two touchdowns in four-of-five games. If your signal caller is struggling or hurt, then the New York Jets’ long-bearded quarterback may be a strategic play in Week 7 against New England. Except for Week 5’s matchup against Dallas’ Brandon Weeden, the Patriots defense has been very susceptible to opposing quarterbacks and has allowed the seventh-most points to the position. Over the course of his career, Fitzpatrick has thrown the most yards and touchdowns against New England and will thrive again in this weekend’s start.
Week 7 Projection: 225 passing yards, 2 TD
Jennings has been superbly subpar all season. However, he does not appear to be in danger of losing his role to Andre Williams or Shane Vereen, but he’s also unlikely to surprise anyone with a breakout performance. He has only averaged 3.7 yards per carry in 2015, but receives the bulk of the carries and a few catches each game this season. The veteran running back has an attractive matchup against a struggling Dallas team, who has surrendered more than 100 rushing yards over the last three games and third-most fantasy points to opposing running backs this year. Jennings scored his lone rushing touchdown against Dallas in Week 1. Although Jennings averaged only 2.8 yards per carry in two games against Dallas last year, he did play a major role in the passing game with eight catches. Treat Jennings as a low-end RB2 or flex start in Week 7.
Week 7 Projection: 100 total yards, TD
If Bryant showed rust in his first game of the season last week due to his suspension, then I’d like an order of “rust” as well. Bryant caught six passes for 137 yards and two touchdowns. By the way, he had Michael Vick and Landry Jones throwing to him. Imagine his ceiling when Ben Roethlisberger returns! Landry Jones is expected to start Week 7 and Bryant should produce again as Pittsburgh visits Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas City.
The Kansas City defense has struggled against opposing wideouts the entire season and allowed the most points, touchdowns and receiving yards to the position. Expect Antonio Brown and Le’Veon Bell to serve as Pittsburgh’s primary offensive options, but Bryant should have another gem regardless. Although he caught only one pass against Kansas City in their 2014 matchup, the reception was for 44 yards. Bryant can be considered a low-end WR2, high WR3, or excellent flex option for Week 7.
Week 7 Projection: 100 yards, TD
TE Ben Watson
Jimmy Graham who? Drew Brees has missed his former tight end all season, but seems to have built chemistry with veteran Ben Watson. During Week 7, Brees targeted Watson 12 times for 10 receptions, which produced 127 yards and a touchdown. Watson seems rejuvenated in this 12th season and officially returned to the fantasy radar. Start him in Week 7 as New Orleans visits Indianapolis. Indianapolis is average in tight end defense, but I expect this game to be a shootout, which should benefit Watson. Watson can add tight end depth to your team and serve as a high-end TE2 or flex for Week 7.
Week 7 Projection: 75 yards, TD
Defense/Special Teams Atlanta Falcons
The Atlanta Falcons defense had a strong start, but has cooled off recently. They rank “middle-of-the-road” or even worse in most defensive categories, but may be worth a look in Week 7 when they visit the Tennessee Titans. The Titans have allowed the most points to opposing defenses, including their Week 6 debacle against the Miami Dolphins. In addition, backup quarterback Zach Mettenberger is likely to start due to Marcus Mariota’s MCL sprain. The Falcons defense should feast on a weak Titans offense and serve as a great “plug-and-play” if your defense is on bye or facing a potent offense.
Week 7 Projection: 12 points
Good luck in Week 7!
Week 6 Results
Week 6 Projection: 225 passing yards, 25 rushing yards, TD
Week 6 Results: 249 passing yards, TD, 2 INT (OK call)
Week 6 Projection: 75 total yards, TD
Week 6 Results: 115 total yards (good call)
Week 6 Projection: 90 yards, TD
Week 6 Results: 102 yards (good call)
TE Jacob Tamme
Week 6 Projection: 50 yards, TD
Week 6 Results: 32 yards (bad call)
Defense/Special Teams – Houston Texans
Week 6 Projection: 12 points
Week 6 Results: 16 points (great call)