Start 'em and Sit 'em Week 7: Running Backs with Favorable Fantasy Matchups

Jamal CollierAnalyst IIIOctober 16, 2012

October 14, 2012; Tampa, FL, USA; Tampa Bay Buccaneers running back LeGarrette Blount (27) runs with the ball during the second half against the Kansas City Chiefs at Raymond James Stadium. Tampa Bay Buccaneers defeated the Kansas City Chiefs 38-10. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-US PRESSWIRE

Doug Martin has company in the Tampa Bay Buccaneers backfield, but there should be enough work for two in Week 7. He and LeGarrette Blount will face the New Orleans Saints defense at home. The Saints will be coming off a bye, but it’s hard to believe all of their defensive deficiencies will be fixed in a week’s time.

The Saints have allowed a five yards-per-carry average to running backs en route to surrendering 711 rushing yards and six touchdowns in five games.

They’ve also allowed 35 catches to opposing rushers on 41 targets, which were converted for 309 yards and an additional touchdown.

Tampa Bay should be able to run all over the Saints on Sunday—if they so choose. The Saints have been giving it up through the air, as well.


Chris Johnson of the Tennessee Titans finds himself in must-start territory in Week 7 when he’ll lace his cleats up to face the Buffalo Bills.

Buffalo is so bad against the run that they gave up more rushing yards to Arizona Cardinals quarterback Kevin Kolb in Week 6 (66 on five carries) than Kolb gained the whole season in 2011 (65 on 17 carries).

That’s not good defense.

Johnson has shown signs of life in two of the past three weeks as a fantasy running back and is certainly worth a start against those Bills.

It might not be a bad idea to start the Bills guys (C.J. Spiller and Fred Jackson) against the Titans, either. Tennessee surrendered 105 yards receiving to running back Isaac Redman of the Pittsburgh Steelers on Thursday night.

Both Spiller and Jackson can catch the ball well.


You might want to buy low on the Oakland Raiders’ Darren McFadden. He has two terrible fantasy games on the season to go along with three good ones.

He should make it four in Week 7.

McFadden took 27 carries against the Atlanta Falcons in Week 6, is still healthy and has already had his bye week. He’s also staring at a favorable schedule for essentially the rest of the season. It starts with the Jacksonville Jaguars at home on Sunday.

Jacksonville has been gashed by dominant running backs this year, having faced the Minnesota Vikings’ Adrian Peterson, Matt Forte of the Chicago Bears and the Houston Texans backfield tag team of Arian Foster and Ben Tate.

Those same Raiders have had issues stopping the run this season, so Maurice Jones-Drew is a good play, as usual.