Week 7 Pickups: Backup RBs Who Will Lead Your Team to Victory

Mike Moraitis@@michaelmoraitisAnalyst IOctober 21, 2012

PITTSBURGH, PA - SEPTEMBER 16:  Jonathan Dwyer #27 of the Pittsburgh Steelers carries the ball during the game against the New York Jets on September 16, 2012 at Heinz Field in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.  (Photo by Joe Sargent/Getty Images)
Joe Sargent/Getty Images

Injuries and bye weeks in the NFL will leave fantasy owners scrambling to find replacements, but there are several backup running backs who will get the nod with their respective teams in Week 7.

Let's see who they are.


Jonathan Dwyer: Pittsburgh Steelers

Thanks to injuries to Rashard Mendenhall and Isaac Redman, Dwyer will get the start for the Steelers.

Baron Batch got the ball last week for Pittsburgh, but thanks to a lackluster 2.2 yards per carry, Dwyer will be taking the job from him. It was Dwyer who backed up Redman to start the season after Mendenhall began 2012 in the trainer's room.

Dwyer didn't put up impressive numbers in three games this season, but he wasn't the featured back in any of those games, so take those stats with a grain of salt. This week, there's no doubt he'll be the No. 1 back.

The Steelers' Week 7 opponent, the Cincinnati Bengals, have been bad against the run this season, ranking No. 21 in the NFL. If you needed more proof that Dwyer could have a big day against Cincy, the Bengals allowed the lowly Cleveland Browns to rush for 100 yards last week.

Cincinnati will have to cheat on the pass this week since Ben Roethlisberger has taken Pittsburgh's passing attack to new levels this season. That means the focus will be off Dwyer and that could open things up for the Steelers back in this game.


Daryl Richardson: St. Louis Rams

Richardson has begun creeping his way into the starting role for the Rams and he could become more prevalent as the Rams start a premature search to replace Steven Jackson. Reportedly, the 29-year-old will be let out of his contract at the end of the season.

After a Week 2 performance with 15 carries for 83 yards against the Washington Redskins, Richardson's carries went down big time.

Over the past four weeks, however, Richardson's carries have increased in each week, culminating with a Week 6 performance that saw the Rams' running back gain 76 yards on 11 carries against the Miami Dolphins' No. 4 rush defense.

Richardson is also good for a few catches out of the backfield and that will hold especially true as quarterback Sam Bradford is routinely being rushed by opposing defenses thanks to horrible pass protection.

That fact could open Richardson up to getting some short-yardage passing plays and he no doubt has the explosive ability to break those short passes for big gains.

St. Louis will be taking on the Green Bay Packers this week. That's also good news for fantasy owners as the Pack is ranked No. 17 against the run this season.


Felix Jones: Dallas Cowboys

Jones started the season with the Cowboys in obscurity, but thanks to the injury to DeMarco Murray, Jones will be the No. 1 back in Week 7.

Last week against the Baltimore Ravens' stingy defense, Jones carried the ball 18 times for 92 yards and a touchdown, proving he can still contribute with Dallas.

Jones only caught one pass for 13 yards, but the Cowboys' running back has caught as many as four balls for 40 yards in a game this season. Therefore, it isn't out of the question that he gains massive yardage on the ground and through the air.

Dallas' Week 7 opponent, the Carolina Panthers, has been dreadful against the run this season, ranking No. 23 in the NFL.

On top of that, the Panthers have to account for Tony Romo and the Cowboys' passing attack. That focus should help Jones to a ton of open space and a big day to boot.