NFL DFS Must Plays: Week 7

Spencer Limbach
Rotoworld

As we head into the weekend, be sure to check out all the content rolling onto the Rotoworld Daily page. Here’s a list of articles looking at the NFL DFS Week 7 slate. I will be updating as new columns are added, so consider this section as your DFS Table of Contents.

NFL DFS Bargains by Renee Miller

NFL GPP Pivots by Spencer Limbach

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NFL DFS Stacks by Renee Miller

Fantasy Football Forecast by Hayden Winks 

DFS Building Blocks (VIDEO) with John Daigle & Ian Hartitz

NFL DFS Starting Points by Renee Miller

DFS Value Finder by Nick Mensio (coming soon) 

NFL DFS Fades by Renee Miller (coming soon) 

NFL DFS Single Game Breakdown (check back for Sunday & Monday Night Football) 

Now onto the NFL DFS Must Plays for Week 7!

Just a reminder, this column includes only Sunday afternoon games (not SNF), as that’s considered the main slate on DFS sites.

PLATINUM: Build your lineup around these guys

Leonard Fournette - RB - Jacksonville (at Cincinnati) 

With Christian McCaffrey relaxing through a well-deserved bye week, Fournette profiles as one of the top running backs in the player pool. The LSU product has been a volume-driven beast with 31, 27, and 26 touches respectively in his last three games. He has notched 26, 22, and 15 fantasy points over that span despite only scoring one touchdown. The good news comes from Fournette potentially reaching paydirt several times while facing a Cincinnati team that ranks dead last against the run. Combine that with his unmatched workload, and Fournette makes sense as a cash game pillar. 

GOLD: Next wave to consider in terms of priority

Matt Ryan - Atlanta (vs. LA Rams)

There are plenty of capable DFS quarterbacks on this slate, as Josh Allen, Russell Wilson, Lamar Jackson, Kyler Murray, Jared Goff, and Daniel Jones all demand attention. However, the Atlanta offense is highly concentrated through Ryan, which has yielded 31+ fantasy points in two straight games. The Falcons’ defense is terrible as well, which enables Ryan to sling the ball as much as he wants in order to keep his team in the game. That should be the case again on Sunday, as the Falcons will host the Rams in the highest over/under (55) of the week. The Rams have gotten torched by Russell Wilson (268-4-0) and Jameis Winston (385-4-1) in recent weeks, and now it’s Ryan’s turn to take advantage. 

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Chris Carson - Seattle (vs. Baltimore) 

Earlier in this article, I mentioned that Jaguars’ RB Fournette had “unmatched” volume on this slate. That’s not entirely true, as Carson has seen 26, 29, and 28 touches respectively over his past three. Seattle will continue to enact a run-centric approach with 20-25 carries for their talented back. It’s nice to see Carson being utilized in the passing game as well, translating 10 targets into a 9-81-1 line over the past three weeks. His opponent, Baltimore, ranks top ten against the run this season, but they have struggled whenever a legitimate RB has crossed their path - which has been few and far between this season. Nick Chubb posted 183 total yards and three touchdowns against the Ravens, while LeSean McCoy broke out for 80 total yards and two scores …  In other words, the touches should be there for Carson, and the matchup isn’t as tough as it seems on paper. Go ahead and pencil him into your DFS cash game lineups with confidence. 

SILVER: Good options that narrowly rank ahead of similar players

Cooper Kupp - LA Rams (at Atlanta)

The Rams passing game was an absolute nightmare last week, as QB Jared Goff went 13-of-24 for 78 yards. It goes without saying that no LAR receivers contributed anything of fantasy significance in that game. Not to be outdone, the Falcons’ defense has been downright terrifying over their past four games, and I don’t mean that in a good way. Jacoby Brissett (310-2), Marcus Mariota (227-3), Deshaun Watson (426-5), and Kyler Murray (340-3) were all able to torch Atlanta without much of an issue. That obviously points to a strong bounce-back situation for Goff and his favorite receiver, Kupp, who currently leads the NFL in targets (69) while averaging 7.5 receptions (3rd in NFL), and 87 yards (8th) per contest. 

Evan Engram - NY Giants (vs. Arizona)

Arizona is not equipped to cover opposing tight ends, just ask Austin Hooper (8-117-1), Will Dissly (7-57-1), Greg Olsen (6-75-2), Mark Andrews (8-112-1), and T.J. Hockenson (6-131-1). Cardinals’ CB Patrick Peterson is set to return, which could force even more looks to Engram over the middle. This is another high-scoring game (50.5 over/under) to draw from, and the New York tight end profiles as a fantasy staple within that. There’s some merit to fading Engram’s likely inflated ownership in tournaments (look to Kittle, Hooper, Andrews, Henry), but I’m not getting cute in cash games. 

Devonta Freeman - Atlanta (vs. LA Rams)

Freeman carries a relaxed salary despite stepping up with 14, 16, and 23 fantasy points (half PPR) respectively over the past three weeks. He has done plenty of damage in the passing game over that span, translating 17 targets into 16 receptions for 142 yards and three touchdowns. Because of this, we can look towards him as a possible stacking extension of his quarterback, Ryan. Freeman doesn’t exactly have the receiving appeal of fellow RBs like Christian McCaffrey or Saquon Barkley, but he’s cheap while trending in a positive direction. It doesn’t hurt that he’s playing in the highest over/under of the week either. 

BRONZE: Not 100% necessities, but they mix well into a quality lineup

Brandin Cooks - WR - LA Rams (at Atlanta)

Take everything mentioned in Kupp’s write-up and directly apply it to Cooks. While you’re at it, go ahead and add these key points as well: 1) Cooks leads the Rams with 28.25% of air yards compared to 25.51% for Kupp and 22.88% for Robert Woods. 2) Atlanta has not been able to get pressure on opposing quarterbacks, meaning LAR QB Goff could finally have enough time to find Cooks on those deeper routes. 3) Cooks is the cheapest of the Rams WR trio while realistically holding the most upside. 

Calvin Ridley - WR - Atlanta (vs. LA Rams)

CB Jalen Ramsey was traded to the Rams, and he’s hoping to play on Sunday. If that’s the case, he’ll probably spend most of his time serving as a blanket over All-Pro WR Julio Jones. Ridley would benefit from that scenario while likely drawing coverage from a backup cornerback, as Marcus Peters has been traded away and Aqib Talib is on injured reserve. Similar to the previous write-up of WR Cooks, Ridely has game-breaking ability and a friendly matchup to prove it. 

PARTICIPATION RIBBONS: Fell just short of a featured spot

Josh Allen - QB - Buffalo (vs. Miami) 

Jared Goff - QB - LA Rams (at Atlanta) 

Saquon Barkley - RB - NY Giants (vs. Arizona)

Dalvin Cook - RB - Minnesota (at Detroit) 

David Johnson - RB - Arizona (at NY Giants) 

T.Y. Hilton - WR - Indianapolis (vs. Houston)

Robert Woods - WR - LA Rams (at Atlanta)

Golden Tate - WR - NY Giants (vs. Arizona) 

John Brown - WR - Buffalo (vs. Miami)

Austin Hooper - TE - Atlanta (vs. LA Rams)

Hunter Henry - TE - LA Chargers (at Tennessee) 

Bills Defense (vs. Miami) 

49ers Defense (at Washington) 

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