Start 'Em, Sit 'Em Week 7: Fantasy Choices That Will Make or Break Lineups

Tim DanielsFeatured ColumnistOctober 17, 2013

EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ - OCTOBER 06:  Eli Manning #10 of the New York Giants looks to pass during the fourth quarter against the Philadelphia Eagles at MetLife Stadium on October 6, 2013 in East Rutherford, New Jersey. The Eagles defeat the Giants 36-21. (Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)
Maddie Meyer/Getty Images

On a weekly basis, there are plenty of easy decisions in fantasy football. Aaron Rodgers, LeSean McCoy and their fellow stars will assume their usual roles while second-tier options like Pierre Garcon and Knowshon Moreno will also be in lineups, barring truly terrible matchups.

Yet it's often the few remaining decisions that make or break a fantasy week. Picking which fringe players belong in the starting lineup and which should spend the week on the bench is often tricky, and making the wrong calls frequently results in a loss.

With that in mind, let's examine which category some of the borderline fantasy assets belong in for Week 7. The groups are followed by analysis on some of the hardest calls owners will need to make this week.


Start 'Em or Sit 'Em?

Start 'Em, Sit 'Em for Week 7
PositionStart 'EmSit 'Em
QBEli Manning (NYG)Alex Smith (KC)
RBDeAngelo Williams (CAR)Lamar Miller (MIA)
WRMike Wallace (MIA)Dwayne Bowe (KC)
TEJermichael Finley (GB)Jared Cook (STL)
KNick Novak (SD)David Akers (DET)
DSan Diego ChargersDenver Broncos
Fantasy Week 7


Analysis for Hardest Calls

Start: Eli Manning (New York Giants)

Manning delivered a monster fantasy game in Week 1. He threw for 450 yards and four touchdowns to help lead a lot of teams to victory with 28 points. Since then, however, he hasn't scored more than 15 points in any week, and his scoring average is below 12.

While that drop-off in numbers is discouraging, all it really means is Manning should be viewed as a matchup play and not a weekly starter. The Giants certainly have enough weapons in the passing game to attack weaker secondaries.

Week 7 is one of those times when Manning is worth starting. New York is set to face the Minnesota Vikings, who rank 29th in the league against the pass at 308 yards per game. Manning should capitalize on that to break the 20-point barrier for the second time this season.


Start: DeAngelo Williams (Carolina Panthers)

The biggest hurdle for Williams when it comes to maintaining more fantasy relevance is the lack of touchdowns. He can carry an entire drive, but Mike Tolbert has been getting the call when the Panthers get around the goal line.

Although it definitely limits Williams' overall upside, it doesn't rule him out of fantasy consideration completely. He's averaging more than 20 touches per game, and any back who receives that type of consistent workload holds value.

He should continue to receive a lion's share of the load out of the Carolina backfield. Add in the fact the Panthers are facing a St. Louis Rams defense that's giving up more than 130 yards per game on the ground, and Williams is a safe fantasy play this week.


Sit: Dwayne Bowe (Kansas City Chiefs)

Bowe was drafted as a No. 2 wide receiver in most leagues. It seemed like fair value for a player with his track record and the fact the Chiefs were revamping the offensive attack. But he's failed to provide much value in the early going.

Through six games, Bowe is averaging barely over five fantasy points per game and has only reached the double-digit mark twice. After years of serving as the top target in Kansas City, he's nothing more than another piece of the puzzle right now.

Given his lack of consistent involvement, he's a boom-or-bust option moving forward. The Chiefs face the top-ranked Houston Texans pass defense in Week 7, which means Bowe's value leans more toward bust than boom for Sunday.