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Fantasy “Believe it or Not?”: Knee-Jerk Reactions After Week 7

Fantasy "Believe it or Not?": Knee-Jerk Reactions After Week 7
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Seven weeks down in the fantasy season which means managers are about halfway to the playoffs, depending on how your league schedules the final frames. The byes are going to hit harder now, and the injuries remain plentiful. With that said, there are still quality players available in leagues.

It’s time for another round of fantasy “Believe it or Not?”. As usual, this is not a deep dive, it is more about evaluating some popular pickups that may still be available in your league. Most of this week’s selections are well under 50 percent owned, so even after initial waiver claims managers might be able to swoop in and get some value for free. Time to play the game and find some value… here we go.

Remember when Baker Mayfield was an afterthought?

When hit with the bye weeks, you need solid fill-ins. Mayfield has been terribly up-and-down in 2019 and 2020, but always plays better with a chip on his shoulder. When speculation arose that he could be looking at a benching, he went out and torched Cincinnati for 295 yards and five touchdowns. He is rostered in 40 percent or less of leagues, so you have got to grab him as your backup, right?

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So, do we believe it or not?

Yeah, we do. Mayfield is at his best with a chip on his shoulder. Regardless of the Cleveland Browns 5-2 record, the talking heads continue to question his ability. With Nick Chubb out, the team will rely on the pass more often and Mayfield will rack up the points. In his next four games, he faces the Raiders, Texans, Eagles, and Jags. None of these defenses are world-beaters, so he should be considered a QB1 in those matchups.

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Remember when the San Francisco running game was best avoided?

Injuries abound in the Bay, with Raheem Mostert (high ankle sprain) going on injured reserve, followed immediately this week by Jeff Wilson (guess what? High ankle sprain), leaving the running back ranks thin. This type of injury is a nagging one, and regardless of what the team says, neither of these two will come back on time. This is the moment to go grab Jerick McKinnon and Jamycal Hasty, is it not? It must be.

So, do we believe it or not?

This is a backfield you want a piece of, but those are not the guys that you want. The 49ers face off with Seattle this week and will likely end up in a scoring battle (Seattle has running back issues of their own) through the air. While the situation is best avoided this week, this is a great opportunity to grab-and-stash Tevin Coleman as he works his way back from the injured reserve. There is an outside chance at him playing in this game if you’re desperate but nabbing him right now for the weeks that follow is a wise move. Coleman is rostered in 30% of leagues.

Remember that Cleveland Browns thing?

Yeah, we will return to northern Ohio and talk about the Browns again. The schedule has already been discussed, as has the probability of Mayfield throwing the ball a bunch. Odell Beckham Jr. is done for the year with a torn ACL. Jarvis Landry is dealing with sore ribs (what is it with the Browns and rib injuries?). Someone has to catch the ball. Last Sunday it was a duo of Rashard Higgins (caught all six targets for 110 yards) and rookie Donovan Peoples-Jones (caught all three of his for 56 yards and a score). It must be high time to run for Cleveland wideouts… yes?

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So, do we believe it or not?

Yes and no, in that order. Higgins is a veteran who has been on the team since 2016, and though he has not seen the field on offense with consistency he stands to be the more trusted of the two. Peoples-Jones still stands to see some scoring opportunities but will likely be used more as a gadget player on sweeps and the like. There is always a chance that Mayfield develops a chemistry in practice with him, but the far-safer floor here is with Higgins. The Browns will be throwing the ball, and minus OBJ, they’ll look for reliability in the passing game. Higgins is available in 88 percent of leagues.

Remember when Dallas Goedert got injured?

Tons of managers dumped the Eagles tight end when he got hurt in Week 3 (ankle). He had already been playing second-fiddle to Zach Ertz anyway. Well, well, well how the tables have turned. Ertz is now out for at least four weeks with (yup, you guessed it) an ankle injury of his own. You should be running for Goedert right now, shouldn’t you?

So, do we believe it or not?

Emphatically yes. Goedert is not likely to return this week, but he has resumed practice and the Eagles have three weeks to activate him. Between the injury to Ertz and DeSean Jackson (what else is new), as well as the typical wide receiver issues in Philly, this is another slam-dunk stash. The tight end position is thin enough as it is and Goedert is only owned in 46% of leagues. If you can afford to use a bench spot in your league, the move will pay dividends as he will automatically be a TE1 as soon as he returns to play. Go get him.

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