As the onslaught of injuries and bye weeks continues, this is a critical stretch of the season where depth is often king. Whatever your squad needs this week and beyond (one-week replacements, contingency plans for your studs, or stash candidates with high upside), we have you covered! Playoff invitations are not simply handed out; they go to teams who are able to navigate through the mid-season grind and do not waver when adversity hits. This is typically around the time of year when the teams at the bottom of your league’s standings may start to fade in activity by the week, so stay locked in and out-prepare the competition for success in the second half of the season. Let’s go earn a victory!
Week 7 Byes: Bills, Eagles, Rams, Vikings
Article Overview/ How to Use:
- Analysis: Highlight a variety of RBs, WRs, and TEs (< 65% rostered on ESPN and/or Yahoo) who I feel could produce fantasy value, either that specific week as a replacement in your lineup or as a bench/ stash option.
- Ranking RBs, WRs, and TEs (< 65% rostered) in order. Please note that the players who are highlighted in the article are not always my top-ranked streamers. These rankings & notes could be useful for teams in deeper leagues or as a means to fill out your “Watch List”.
- List of Impact Backups or players who would gain significant fantasy value if the starter was inactive. These names would make excellent stash candidates, but likely not worthwhile streamers due to lack of usage as the backup.
- Although base rankings tend to skew toward 12-team, half-PPR leagues, I will provide clarifications if a player is best used in a specific scenario or league type.
- Recap the performances of the previous week’s highlighted players.
* If anyone featured below is at risk of not playing or is relegated to a bench role late in the week, I will do my best to keep you all updated on Twitter (@BrandonMillerFB). All players below are under 65%-rostered as of 10/19/22.
Kenyan Drake (RB, Baltimore Ravens)
After J.K. Dobbins (ACL recovery) left Week 6 early with knee tightness, Drake busted out from the sidelines to register 10 carries for 119 yards, one rushing touchdown, and one catch for eight yards. It seems that Dobbins may not be at full strength for a while, maybe not even all season, so I feel that the play is to pick up Drake now while monitoring the status of Dobbins and Gus Edwards (also ACL) in the coming weeks. This backfield could get pretty messy and unpredictable once all players are active, so take advantage of the expanded opportunities for Drake while you can as part of this talented Baltimore offense.
Latavius Murray (RB, Denver Broncos)
Oh, look! Another journeyman RB who came out of nowhere to have a decent game last week. I mentioned that this was the “grind” portion of the season, so it’s not always going to be pretty. Although Melvin Gordon was active last week and technically started, he recorded just three carries compared to Murray’s 15 for 66 yards (plus a catch for -2 yards for good measure). To make matters even a little more confusing, Mike Boone factored into the passing game and a change-of-pace rushing role.
It is no secret that this has been an underachieving Broncos team looking for a consistent offensive identity. Although I do not think Murray will suddenly change their fortunes, I think this coaching staff will ride the hot hand with whoever is performing. He is a veteran player with experience adjusting to whatever role he is placed in, setting up a floor that will not tank your team even if he is splitting touches with the other Denver RBs.
RB Streamers (ranked): Eno Benjamin (62% ESPN, 71% Yahoo), Brian Robinson (60% ESPN, 71% Yahoo), Kenyan Drake, Tyler Allgeier, Latavius Murray, Dontrell Hilliard, Chase Edmonds (62% ESPN, 66% Yahoo), Rex Burkhead, Khalil Herbert, Deon Jackson (monitor Taylor + Hines status), Sony Michel, Caleb Huntley, Rachaad White, Nyheim Hines (monitor status), J.D. McKissic, Jerick McKinnon, Keaontay Ingram, Brandon Bolden, Isiah Pacheco, Mike Boone, Jaylen Warren, Samaje Perine, Mark Ingram, Tevin Coleman, DeeJay Dallas, Avery Williams, Matt Breida, Pierre Strong Jr, Alexander Mattison (bye), Kenneth Gainwell (bye), James Cook (bye), Gus Edwards (stash), Cam Akers (bye – stash, 60% Yahoo).
Robert Woods (WR, Tennessee Titans)
Every now and then, things line up in a fantasy season where you are able to scoop up a potential weekly contributor whose rest-of-season value and current rostered percentage are not quite aligned. While rookie Treylon Burks (turf toe) remains out for the foreseeable future, the veteran Woods is expected to continue as the undisputed top option in the Titans’ passing game. He is now coming off a bye week, which may be the reason his rostered percentage is not above the 65% threshold for this article.
Woods has nine, four, and eight targets over the last three games and should flirt with double-digit targets in Week 7 against the Colts. Follow the volume and you may have yourself a solid WR3 for the next few weeks, at minimum.
Josh Reynolds (WR, Detroit Lions)
Considering some of the familiar names in Detroit’s passing attack like Amon-Ra St. Brown, T.J. Hockenson, and D.J. Chark, I was surprised to see that the unheralded Reynolds is currently leading the team in receiving yards (335). It sounds like the Lions have a chance of getting St. Brown and possibly even stud RB D’Andre Swift back for Week 7, which would naturally negate his opportunities, but I think there will still be enough meat on the bone for Reynolds to produce fantasy points.
Other than St. Brown, Chark’s injury status is one to watch when deciding whether or not to utilize Reynolds. If they are both in, he probably is not worth your while. If one or both are out, fire him up vs the Cowboys in what is currently projected to be the third-highest combined total in this week’s slate of games.
WR Streamers (ranked): Robert Woods (63% ESPN, 62% Yahoo), Romeo Doubs (58% ESPN, 61% Yahoo, priority add WR3/Flex), Curtis Samuel (82% ESPN, 67% Yahoo), Rondale Moore, Darnell Mooney (68% ESPN, 54% Yahoo), Josh Reynolds, Alec Pierce, George Pickens, Wan’Dale Robinson, Hunter Renfrow (71% ESPN, 63% Yahoo), Tyler Boyd, Michael Gallup, Corey Davis, Chase Claypool (68% ESPN, 57% Yahoo), Nico Collins, Joshua Palmer, Zay Jones, Noah Brown, Marquez Valdes-Scantling, Devin Duvernay, Tyquan Thornton, Marquez Callaway, Donovan Peoples-Jones, Mack Hollins, Elijah Moore, Mecole Hardman, Olamide Zaccheaus, Robbie Anderson (stash), Jahan Dotson (monitor status – stash), Isaiah McKenzie (bye), K.J. Osborn (bye), Allen Robinson II (bye), Kadarius Toney (inj-stash).
Robert Tonyan (TE, Green Bay Packers)
Tonyan seems to be rounding into form (ACL recovery) while the Packers receiving corps continues to be hit by injuries, so the timing is ripe if you are looking for a tight end on the rise. Tonyan saw his highest snap percentage of the 2022 season last week (63%) as well as his highest most targets, by far (12), which he turned into 10 catches for 90 yards. While I do not think you can bank on double-digit targets every week, I would expect the volume to sustain in the 7-10 range as long as the Green Bay pass-catchers are banged up. Add up the volume, a future HOF QB in Aaron Rodgers who trusts him, and the third-highest catch percentage in the league (84.38%) and you should have a solid back-end TE1 for possibly the rest of the year.
TE Streamers (ranked): Taysom Hill (53% ESPN, 77% Yahoo), Hayden Hurst, Robert Tonyan, Evan Engram, Mike Gesicki, Daniel Bellinger, Cade Otton, Hunter Henry, Noah Fant, Juwan Johnson, Tyler Conklin, Mo Alie-Cox, Cole Kmet, Greg Dulcich, Will Dissly, Dawson Knox (bye – stash, 69% ESPN, 64% Yahoo), Irv Smith Jr (bye).
Impact Backups/ Injury Stashes
Although this article’s primary focus is to rank and discuss RB/WR/TEs who are fantasy-relevant and 65%-rostered or less, I also believe it is extremely important to plan ahead by setting your roster up with contingency options if disaster strikes. Not many things in the fantasy sports universe are worse than having a successful regular season undone by gut-wrenching injury luck. That said, below is my list of Top Impact Backups and Injury Stashes, in order, regardless of position.
Top Impact Backups: Eno Benjamin (likely starter this week if Conner remains out), Alexander Mattison, James Cook, Khalil Herbert, Rachaad White, Gus Edwards, Samaje Perine, Jaylen Warren, Dontrell Hilliard, Chase Edmonds, Nyheim Hines, Matt Breida, Isiah Pacheco/ Jerick McKinnon, Tevin Coleman.
Graduated (add if available): Darrell Henderson (bye, must add – 68% ESPN, 86% Yahoo), Michael Carter (72% ESPN, 70% Yahoo).
Top Injury Stashes: Van Jefferson (likely to return after Rams’ bye; could emerge as a weekly contributor in team’s passing gameplan), Kyren Williams (likely to factor into Rams RB mix once returning from injury after Week 7), Elijah Mitchell (68% ESPN, 74% Yahoo), Gus Edwards (Ravens have shown a tendency to utilize two backs when Edwards and Dobbins are healthy), Jameson Williams (talented rookie but also will need to climb depth chart past other Detroit WRs), Treylon Burks (talented rookie may have been on the verge of a breakout pre-injury), Kadarius Toney (tons of talent but also may be something going on behind the scenes other than injury).
Accountability is everything, so here is a quick look back at last week’s recommendations
Eno Benjamin (RB, Arizona Cardinals): Benjamin received a good amount of work with 18 total touches (15 carries, 3 targets/ catches) and turned it into 65 all-purpose yards. While the efficiency left some to be desired, he should remain a solid short-term play as long as he is the man in Arizona’s backfield. I expect more scoring opportunities with DeAndre Hopkins rejoining the offense this week as well.
Brian Robinson (RB, Washington Commanders): Robinson led the Commanders’ backfield last Thursday night against the Bears, registering 17 carries for 60 yards and a score. The next highest in terms of carries was Antonio Gibson with five, so this appears to be Robinson’s show until proven otherwise. He is a fringe RB2/RB3 for me.
Alec Pierce (WR, Indianapolis Colts): Although Pierce was inefficient, catching just three of seven targets, he came up big when the Colts needed him. Pierce finished with 49 receiving yards and clutch score late in the game, cementing his status as the second-best receiving option in Indy.
Zay Jones (WR, Jacksonville Jaguars): Jones was opposing Pierce and the Colts on Sunday and led the Jags in receiving with five catches for 42 yards. He will remain involved in this offense and is a WR3/WR4 as things stand, with a boost in PPR leagues.
Taysom Hill (TE, New Orleans Saints): Hill is far from a traditional TE, but he was involved in the gameplan as expected with so many of the Saints big-name players out. Hill was 2/4 for 16 yards passing and had five carries for 39 yards on the ground. The Saints play on Thursday and could be short-handed again, so keep it rolling with Hill.
Make sure to check out our weekly priority waiver wire adds article and waiver wire podcast for more insights on who you should be submitting claims for heading into each Wednesday; it is a great way to get a head start on acquiring players often discussed in this article. Good luck in Week 7!
(Photo by Shaun Brooks/Actionplus/Icon Sportswire)