The No.1 fantasy pickup this week is an obvious one: running back Felix Jones of the Dallas Cowboys. DeMarco Murray was running roughshod over the Baltimore Ravens, gaining 90 yards in the first half on the road in Week 6.
Then, according to Todd Archer of ESPNDallas.com, Murray hurt some ligaments in his foot. He took one carry for a few yards in the second half before leaving the game.
Unfortunately for Murray’s fantasy owners, his handcuff was unclear because Jones had been ineffective as a runner for the Cowboys. Jones also cramped up on Sunday, lending doubt to the idea that he will be able to keep a stranglehold on the featured role in Murray’s absence.
But he played well, and the Cowboys have one of the absolute most favorable matchups in Week 7: the Carolina Panthers.
Jones all of a sudden becomes a must-start for fantasy owners in various situations including, but not limited to, running backs in bye weeks or injured fantasy RB corps.
Below are some other guys that should be targeted on the waiver wire in Week 7.
Josh Freeman, QB, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Freeman is worth a roster spot as a bye-week replacement this week. He’ll be playing his third straight game at home (and second coming off a bye). The Buccaneers haven’t been forced to leave Tampa Bay since Week 3.
In Week 7, Freeman will get the New Orleans Saints.
LeGarrette Blount, RB, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Blount has received four, six and seven in the Bucs’ last three respective outings. If that trend continues, and he gets eight to 10 touches against the Saints, he could come up with 50 or 60 yards. There are worse plays at running back this week.
Philip Tanner, RB, Dallas Cowboys
In case Murray misses extended time, Tanner is worth a pickup as well because Jones hasn’t been able to avoid injury himself. Tanner could also be a solid flex play in Week 7.
Already mentioned and still viable: Daryl Richardson (St. Louis Rams), William Powell (Arizona Cardinals), Alex Green (Green Bay Packers) and David Wilson (New York Giants).
Mike Williams, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
See: Josh Freeman.
Brandon Gibson and Chris Givens, St. Louis Rams
Choosing a receiver for the Rams as your fantasy wideout is a risky proposition. Gibson has been a starter all year for this Rams team and notched a season-best 91 yards on seven catches (nine targets) in Week 6.
The speedy rookie Givens gets better by the week. He saw seven targets in Week 6, catching a career-best three balls for a career-high 85 yards.
Each of these guys will have to provide a spark for the Rams at home in Week 7 against what we all know is an explosive Green Bay Packers offense on the other side of the ball.
Already mentioned and still viable: Josh Gordon (Cleveland Browns), Devery Henderson (New Orleans Saints), Kendall Wright (Tennessee Titans), Randall Cobb (Green Bay Packers), Domenik Hixon (New York Giants) and Donnie Avery (Indianapolis Colts).
Jermaine Gresham, Cincinnati Bengals
Gresham was targeted seven times in Week 6. He hasn’t caught fewer than three passes in any one game this season and faces the Pittsburgh Steelers’ injury-riddled defense in Week 7.
Pittsburgh isn’t defending the middle of the field very well this year. The Steelers have given up three touchdowns to tight ends so far (in five games).
The Raiders have a favorable matchup in Week 7. They’ll welcome the Jacksonville Jaguars to Oakland after picking off MVP candidate Matt Ryan three times in Week 6.