Week 7 Fantasy Wrap: Aaron Rodgers reminds us of what he can do

Oakland Raiders @ Green Bay Packers

Aaron Rodgers was off to a good but not especially amazing start to the season entering Week 7, which was disappointing with Mike McCarthy gone. Then he erupted Sunday, becoming just the third player in NFL history (and only the second in the Super Bowl era) to record 400+ passing yards with five TD passes and a rushing score in a single game, as Rodgers went off for nearly 50 fantasy points despite missing Davante Adams and with Marquez Valdes-Scantling and Geronimo Allison both hobbled to the point of nearly not being able to play.

The 35 year old signal caller got 13.8 YPA and finished with a perfect Passer Rating, and it almost seemed as if Matt LaFleur was going out of his way to pad Rodgers’ stats with all of the pass plays he called around the goal line (he entered with the third-most pass attempts inside the 10-yard line this season). Green Bay has been graded as one of the better pass-blocking units in the NFL this year, and Rodgers has benefitted from more play-action. He’s only going to get better the more comfortable he and LaFleur become together to go along with Adams’ imminent return.

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As for the rest of Green Bay’s receiving group, Valdes-Scantling had 133 yards on just three targets, but he’s proving to be more of a boom-or-bust type as a downfield threat who relies on big plays over volume. Allen Lazard had cheap DFS appeal before MVS and Allison were active, but it appears to be a group that can be mostly ignored in fantasy thanks to Green Bay’s defense and improved running game, especially once Adams returns. Eight different Packers had multiple catches Sunday, as Rodgers is spreading the ball around … Aaron Jones dominated carries, but Jamaal Williams remained involved with four catches and a TD grab.

Derek Carr has the NFL’s highest completion percentage but lost a crucial fumble out of the end zone and threw another pick in that same end zone … Tight ends Darren Waller and Foster Moreau totaled three touchdown catches, with the latter a sneaky dynasty hold and the former finally seeing some TD regression after entering scoreless despite pulling down 37 catches this season … Josh Jacobs was once again treated like a true workhorse and is locked in as a top-12 fantasy back moving forward.

Arizona Cardinals @ New York Giants

The Cardinals put up 27 points and won despite a quiet game from Kyler Murray and David Johnson being a complete no-show (please just make him inactive next time), as Chase Edmonds went nuts for 150 YFS and three scores. We’ll need more info regarding Arizona’s backfield this week, but it’s obvious Edmonds would be a must-start any time Johnson is out, although the Cardinals have a ridiculously tough upcoming schedule for RBs (@NO, SF, @TB, @SF, Bye). Put differently, the team faces only defenses ranked in the top-five in RB fantasy points against until Week 13 … Saquon Barkley had the NFL’s greatest carry that went for a six-yard loss and appears ready to be treated as a weekly top-three back again, while Larry Fitzgerald seems to be showing his age as he hasn’t reached 70 yards or scored in four straight games despite Christian Kirk’s absence … Evan Engram managed just six yards on five targets against a Cardinals defense that’s routinely shredded by tight ends, as he watched Rhett Ellison score instead.

Houston Texans @ Indianapolis Colts

Jacoby Brissett tossed four touchdowns and now has multiple TD passes in all but one game this year despite getting a modest 6.7 YPA, while Zach Pascal erupted for a huge game on most fantasy waiver wires … Both running games struggled, with Marlon Mack especially disappointing given the game script, his advantage up front, and with the hope he was fully healthy following Indy’s bye … What a TD grab by Eric Ebron Will Fuller was bound to depart a game with a hamstring injury, but it’s too bad it happened on literally the first drive in Sunday’s outing. It helped DeAndre Hopkins have his best game since Week 1, and Kenny Stills becomes a highly intriguing add this week … The Texans have punted just three times over the last three games.

Miami Dolphins @ Buffalo Bills

Ryan Fitzpatrick was a big upgrade over Josh Rosen and gave a scare to many Survivor entries, while everyone on Buffalo disappointed other than John Brown DeVante Parker saw another 10 targets and became just the second wide receiver all season to score against a tough Bills secondary. He quietly ranks 11th in air yards and would become a viable weekly fantasy option if Fitzpatrick keeps the job … There have been more impressive 5-1 starts, but Buffalo gets another two home games now as well. They returned an onside attempt to the house to seal Sunday’s win.

Minnesota Vikings @ Detroit Lions

After throwing five touchdowns over the first five games, Kirk Cousins has tossed eight over his last two, including another impressive performance Sunday against a solid Detroit defense. His TD strike to Adam Thielen was particularly nice, although the wideout wouldn’t play another snap (Stefon Diggs would be a borderline WR1 as long as Thielen is sidelined, especially with a couple of favorable upcoming matchups and Cousins now clicking) … Kerryon Johnson also left injured and was seen wearing a knee brace on the sideline, making Ty Johnson the clear top priority on waiver wires this week. The rookie back is capable of taking over as Detroit’s workhorse, and his 40-time checked in the 92nd percentile, while his Speed Score was in the 86th. Detroit faces a Giants defense next that just ushered Chase Edmonds into the end zone three times, so Ty should be bid on aggressively if news looks bad for Kerryon … Marvin Jones was due to hit pay dirt and erupted for four touchdowns in a monstrous performance.

Jacksonville Jaguars @ Cincinnati Bengals

Gardner Minshew bounced back and now sports a 10:2 TD:INT ratio while averaging 24.7 rushing yards per game on the season, while Andy Dalton was absolutely brutal. At one point, he tossed three ugly picks over a five-play span against a Jaguars secondary without Jalen Ramsey Joe Mixon caught a touchdown (he’s still searching for his first rushing score) but somehow ran for just two yards on 10 carries against a Jacksonville run defense that entered ranked dead last in DVOA ... Over the past four games, Leonard Fournette has 115 touches, which is a season’s pace of 460 (that would be the second-most in NFL history). More touchdowns are sure to come as long as he stays healthy.

Los Angeles Rams @ Atlanta Falcons

A welcoming Atlanta defense helped with Jared Goff’s road woes, while Matt Ryan had his 300-yard game streak end while leaving with an injury, which is fitting for the Falcons’ disastrous 2019. Austin Hooper was silent until Matt Schaub entered Sunday, but all Falcons would see a big downgrade in fantasy value should Ryan miss time … Todd Gurley was held to 2.3 YPC (Darrell Henderson should obviously be rostered in all fantasy leagues) without a rushing score, while Cooper Kupp, Robert Woods and Brandin Cooks were all held under 85 yards without touchdowns against an Atlanta secondary that’s been shredded by wide receivers, yet the Rams scored 37 points in the easy road win … Gerald Everett led tight ends in air yards by a mile this week and suddenly ranks fifth at the position on the season. He’s an elite tackle-breaker dating back to college, has been close to a handful of big plays the last few weeks and should be treated as a borderline top-five fantasy tight end moving forward.

Gerald Everett is pretty much a big play waiting to happen. (Photo by Jordon Kelly/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
Gerald Everett is pretty much a big play waiting to happen. (Photo by Jordon Kelly/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

San Francisco 49ers @ Washington Redskins

Sloppy conditions contributed to poor passing stats, but the 49ers were already on pace to allow the fewest passing yards since 1982 before yielding just 50 Sunday. Add Terry McLaurin to the list of legit WRs shut down by San Francisco this season … The 49ers’ strong defense and running game are going to continue to limit Jimmy Garoppolo’s fantasy value, and for all the right moves this team made during the offseason, drafting Deebo Samuel over A.J. Brown might not have been one of them.

Los Angeles Chargers @ Tennessee Titans

Philip Rivers woke up with a big fourth quarter, while Ryan Tannehill got 10.8 YPA in the win and further entrenched himself as his team’s starter … Keenan Allen leads the NFL in air yards, while Mike Williams ranks eighth, but fantasy gamers likely don’t care after another lackluster game from both Sunday. Both wideouts would qualify as better buy-low candidates if not for Hunter Henry’s reemergence … The Chargers decided to call back-to-back Melvin Gordon runs with 30 seconds left from the one-yard with zero timeouts left. The results: Only those two plays and a loss. It’s true most teams have thrown the ball far too often when inside the five-yard line this season, but that decision was curious with no timeouts. The Chargers are in last place at 2-5 with upcoming contests in Chicago and against the Packers. In fact, there’s a real chance they are favored in only one of their remaining games, which is remarkable for a team most viewed as Super Bowl contenders entering the year.

Baltimore Ravens @ Seattle Seahawks

Russell Wilson was held to just 5.9 YPA (Jaron Brown hurt with a bad drop in the end zone), while Lamar Jackson was a highlight reel running for 116 yards and a TD. The sophomore quarterback incredibly ranks fifth in the NFL in rushing while leading in YPC. Jackson had a nice game despite once again missing Marquise Brown and dealing with three drops by Mark Andrews, who had his worst game of the season. Wilson’s first interception of the year was a pick-six to newcomer Marcus Peters … The Ravens have a bye and then get the Patriots, but in deeper leagues, I’m stashing Gus Edwards right now … DK Metcalf led Seattle in targets and should stay busier with Will Dissly out, but his lost fumble was brutal.

New Orleans Saints @ Chicago Bears

The Saints entered without Drew Brees and Alvin Kamara but put up 36 points during an easy win in Chicago against a Bears team rested off their bye. What coaching. Latavius Murray is an RB1 as long as Kamara is sidelined … The Bears haven’t generated 300 yards of offense in any of their first six games for their first time in the Super Bowl era, and they would’ve looked even worse Sunday if not for a 102-yard kickoff return for a touchdown as well as recovering the first onside kick in the NFL this season, which contributed to a late garbage time score … David Montgomery had half as many lost fumbles as he did carries, while Mitchell Trubisky got just 4.6 YPA in his return and remains a real problem … Allen Robinson saw a whopping 16 targets and now ranks second in WOPR this season, so he’s a legit top-12 fantasy WR despite Chicago’s messy QB situation.

Philadelphia Eagles @ Dallas Cowboys

The Cowboys got healthier and rebounded from a three-game losing streak with a big win over the Eagles, who managed just three points over the final three quarters. Amari Cooper looked good physically, securing all five of his targets, but all other pass-catchers in this game (aside from Dallas Goedert) were surprisingly quiet, including a disappointing performance from Michael Gallup against a Philly secondary that entered allowing the most fantasy points to wide receivers this season … Brett Maher became the first kicker in NFL history with three 60+ yard field goals after nailing a 63-yarder Sunday night, while Carson Wentz is now 9-14 on the road in his career … Ezekiel Elliott looked great and became the first 100-yard rusher against the Eagles this season, as he got 5.0 YPC versus a run defense that came in ranked second in DVOA.

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