Fantasy Football Week 7 Pickups: 15 Moves to Save Your Season

Adam LazarusSenior Analyst IOctober 20, 2010

Fantasy Football Week 7 Pickups: 15 Moves to Save Your Season

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    OAKLAND, CA - OCTOBER 10:  Bruce Gradkowski #5 of the Oakland Raiders passes the ball against the San Diego Chargers at Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum on October 10, 2010 in Oakland, California.  (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)
    Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

    Fantasy Football Week 7 is not too late to resurrect your season.

    There are still plenty of good players out there.

    Some might be players others have given up on. Some might be players still lying in the weeds.

    Depending on who's out there, you can add depth or even a starter to your roster.

    Check out these 15 players who—if available—could save your season.

No. 15: Seattle Seahawks D/ST

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    SEATTLE - OCTOBER 11:  Wide receiver Torry Holt #81 of the Jacksonville Jaguars is tackled by Lofa Tatupu #51 of the Seattle Seahawks on October 11, 2009 at Qwest Field in Seattle, Washington. The Seahawks defeated the Jaguars 41-0. (Photo by Otto Greule
    Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images

    The Seahawks rank 11th in overall defense, so perhaps they've slipped by some owners in your 10-person league.

    They certainly have stumbled against some of the better passers in the NFL, most notably the two-week stretch in which they allowed 762 yards combined to Denver's Kyle Orton and San Diego's Philip Rivers.

    But they seemed to tighten things up last week against some fairly strong Chicago Bears skill players.

    And look what's left on the schedule: two meetings with the Cardinals and rookie Max Hall, Tampa Bay, Carolina, Oakland, San Francisco and Kansas City. Those are all the bottom of the barrel in terms of scoring points.

    The Seahawks should limit each of them to less than 20 and force plenty of turnovers along the way.

No. 14: David Carr, QB, San Francisco

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    SEATTLE - SEPTEMBER 12:  Quarterback David Carr #5 of the San Francisco 49ers warms up prior to the NFL season opener against the Seattle Seahawks at Qwest Field on September 12, 2010 in Seattle, Washington. (Photo by Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images)
    Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images

    The 49ers' season is a mess—when has a win over the Raiders ever sparked anything?—so a change at quarterback is always a possibility.

    Don't overlook the likely scenario of Mike Singletary swapping out one No. 1 overall draft pick bust quarterback, Alex Smith, for another, older No. 1 overall draft pick bust quarterback, David Carr.

    The skill players—Frank Gore, Michael Crabtree and Vernon Davis—are there for someone to rack up yards and touchdown passes. If Smith isn't doing it, perhaps Carr can.

No. 13: Keiland Williams, RB, Washington Redskins

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    EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ - AUGUST 27: Keiland Williams #35 of the Washington Redskins  runs against the New York Jets during their preseason game on August 27, 2010 at the New Meadowlands Stadium  in East Rutherford, New Jersey.  (Photo by Al Bello/Getty Image
    Al Bello/Getty Images

    By now everyone who is in the know has swallowed up the Redskins' new starter Ryan Torain.

    But he is far from guaranteed to stay healthy. Torain is in just his second NFL season but has battled several significant injuries, most notably an ACL. He is already under scrutiny with that knee following his 20-carry effort against Indianapolis.

    No one knows if Clinton Portis will return at full strength, and if Torain misses any time, Williams is a good option. He did have a nice 14-yard run on Sunday night.

No. 12: Jerome Harrison, RB, Philadelphia Eagles

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    DETROIT - AUGUST 28: Jerome Harrison #35 of the Cleveland Browns tries to escape the tackle of Dre Bly #32 of the Detroit Lions during preseason game on August 28, 2010 at Ford Field in Detroit, Michigan.  (Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)
    Gregory Shamus/Getty Images

    Andy Reid would not have traded away Mike Bell if he didn't see Harrison helping this Eagles team.

    There is no doubt that LeSean McCoy is the feature back in Philly. But Harrison can provide a spark off the bench, contribute in the passing game and is an elusive runner.

    McCoy's rib injury might have an impact on him later this season. Harrison is a good spot starter, and with Michael Vick in the lineup, defenses would overlook Harrison when he is on the field.

No. 11: Tarvaris Jackson, QB, Minnesota Vikings

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    MINNEAPOLIS - NOVEMBER 15:  Tavaris Jackson #7 of the Minnesota Vikings calls out the play in the fourth quarter against the Detroit Lions on November 15, 2009 at Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome in Minneapolis, Minnesota. The Vikings defeated the Lions 27-10
    Elsa/Getty Images

    It wouldn't seem likely that a Jenn Sterger-induced suspension is coming to Brett Favre, but it's not unthinkable. Neither is the possibility that Favre has to sit because of his elbow problem.

    Either way, the Vikings have plenty of offensive weapons: Adrian Peterson, Percy Harvin, Randy Moss and Visanthe Shiancoe. Oh, and if Favre were to miss games, especially in late November or December, there is a good chance Sidney Rice would be on the field as well.

    Any quarterback in the league should be able to toss a few TD passes to that corps of receivers.

No. 10: David Thomas, TE, New Orleans Saints

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    GLENDALE, AZ - OCTOBER 10:  Tight end Jeremy Shockey #88 of the New Orleans Saints celebrates with teammate David Thomas #85 after Shockey caught a 1 yard touchdown reception against the Arizona Cardinals during the first quarter of the NFL game at the Un
    Christian Petersen/Getty Images

    Jeremy Shockey is the "big name" tight end in New Orleans. For how much longer, no one knows.

    Since Week 1, in all but one game, Thomas has nabbed three or more passes. That's not a lot, but from the tight end position, if even one of those catches is along the goal line, he's worth picking up.

    Shockey is 30 and has endured a swarm of injuries. Thomas is younger and makes far less money. Interested in seeing what they could have as a cheaper starting option next season, the Saints might put him on the field more in the second half.

No. 9: Tim Tebow, QB, Denver Broncos

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    JACKSONVILLE, FL - SEPTEMBER 12:  Quarterback Tim Tebow #15 of the Denver Broncos practices prior to the NFL season opener game against the Jacksonville Jaguars at EverBank Field on September 12, 2010 in Jacksonville, Florida.  (Photo by Sam Greenwood/Get
    Sam Greenwood/Getty Images

    On the surface it would be a nightmare for fantasy owners to see the Broncos put Kyle Orton on the bench. He has been the second leading passer for most of the 2010 NFL season.

    But the Broncos are 2-4; they're not winning games, no matter how many yards Orton throws for.

    Because Tebow is a completely different option at quarterback, the Broncos might consider giving Tebow a look. In a 60-minute game, Tebow has to be considered a threat to score three touchdowns, either on the ground, in the air or both.

    Even if Denver doesn't replace Orton, Tebow might be worth having on your roster.

No. 8: LeGarrette Blount, RB, Tampa Bay Buccaneers

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    CINCINNATI, OH - OCTOBER 10: LeGarrette Blount #27 of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers runs with the ball against the Cincinnati Bengals at Paul Brown Stadium on October 10, 2010 in Cincinnati, Ohio. (Photo by Jamie Sabau/Getty Images)
    Jamie Sabau/Getty Images

    No, not in case you're fielding a team of NFL players to compete in a charity MMA match.

    Blount is in a good situation down in Tampa. There is no feature back, and it seems like several guys will get an opportunity to try out. 

    Cadillac Williams hasn't been able to stay healthy since his rookie season, 30-year-old Earnest Graham has "sore, older legs," according to head coach Raheem Morris, and Blount is a huge back at 247 pounds.

    He was a starter at Oregon before the infamous punch against Boise State for a reason.

No. 7: Dexter McCluster, WR, Kansas City Chiefs

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    KANSAS CITY, MO - SEPTEMBER 26: Dexter McCluster #22 of the Kansas City Chiefs runs downfield with a 31-yard touchdown reception against the San Francisco 49ers at Arrowhead Stadium on September 26, 2010 in Kansas City, Missouri. The Chiefs won 31-10. (Ph
    Joe Robbins/Getty Images

    We know what he is capable of doing as a special teams player.

    Now McCluster has had nearly half a season as an NFL wide receiver. As a second-round pick, the Chiefs have to be hoping that he's developed enough to see more playing time. He's hasn't played that many significant minutes thus far and has 10 catches, 106 yards and a touchdown.

    The Chiefs offense has not been explosive enough this season. Getting the ball into McCluster's hands—either via a reverse or a simple bubble or slip screen—would provide an opportunity to change that.

No. 6: Derrick Ward, RB, Houston Texans

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    HOUSTON - OCTOBER 17:  Running back Derrick Ward #32 runs for a 38 yard touchdown in the third quarter against the Kansas City Chiefs at Reliant Stadium on October 17, 2010 in Houston, Texas.  (Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images)
    Bob Levey/Getty Images

    When Arian Foster sat out the first quarter against Oakland earlier this season, Ward did a fine job in his place. In all he carried the ball 11 times for 78 yards and a touchdown.

    With Foster available the entire game last week against Kansas City, Ward saw only four touches. But he made the most of them, scoring a critical touchdown, averaging nearly 20 yards per carry and adding 12 on a reception out of the backfield.

    Should Foster miss time from here on out, the Texans have a quality replacement who has started games for a Super Bowl winner. That type of experience will be important to a young Texans team trying to reach the postseason for the first time ever.

No. 5: Josh Scobee, K, Jacksonville Jaguars

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    SAN DIEGO - SEPTEMBER 19: Place kicker Josh Scobee #10 of the Jacksonville Jaguars tries a field goal out of the hold of Adam Podlesh #3 aganst the San Diego Chargers at Qualcomm Stadium on September 19, 2010 in San Diego, California. (Photo by Stephen Du
    Stephen Dunn/Getty Images

    If you're looking for a new kicker who is more reliable, Scobee might be the best available player in your league (ESPN.com has him as owned in 34 percent of leagues right now).

    His game-winning, last-second 59-yarder made headlines in the Week 4 win over Indianapolis. But he's been very consistent all year. He also has a 51-yarder on his résumé this season.

    More than anything else, however, it's been his consistency. Scobee is 11-for-11 this year. Since Jacksonville's offense doesn't exactly rival "The Greatest Show On Turf," the Jags have to kick a lot of field goals to stay in the game early.

    The fact that Scobee's Jaguars play three more games at (potentially) domed stadiums in Houston, Dallas and Indianapolis should also help Scobee's totals.

No. 4: Jason Avant, WR, Philadelphia Eagles

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    PHILADELPHIA - DECEMBER 27 : Jason Avant #81 of the Philadelphia Eagles catches a touchdown in the third quarter against Renaldo Hill #23 of the Denver Broncos at Lincoln Financial Field on December 27, 2009 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Jim Mc
    Jim McIsaac/Getty Images

    DeSean Jackson is definitely out this week, so Avant should be the second option for Kevin Kolb.

    For however long Jackson is out, Jeremy Maclin will be the big-time playmaker, but Avant will have chances to catch the ball.

    There is always room on an Andy Reid team for more pass catchers to go deep. The same can be said about an offense quarterbacked by Michael Vick.

No. 3: Chris Ivory, RB, New Orleans Saints

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    GLENDALE, AZ - OCTOBER 10:  Runningback Chris Ivory #29 of the New Orleans Saints warms up before the NFL game against the Arizona Cardinals at the University of Phoenix Stadium on October 10, 2010 in Glendale, Arizona.  (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty
    Christian Petersen/Getty Images

    Because he broke through for 158 yards on just 15 carries last week, you've probably waited too long to pick him up.

    But in case, by some miracle, he is still out there, make sure you pick up the 22-year-old rookie from small Tiffin University.

    Ladell Betts has not been the answer during the Saints' running back tryouts, and Ivory has turned out the best performance.

    Not only that, but who's to say that Pierre Thomas or Reggie Bush should automatically get the starter's job back when they return healthy? Neither one is exactly Chris Johnson or Adrian Peterson. If Ivory strings together a few good games, he could become the full-time starter, regardless of Bush and Thomas' returns.

No. 2: Pierre Garcon, WR, Indianapolis Colts

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    INDIANAPOLIS, IN - OCTOBER 10: Pierre Garcon #85 of the Indianapolis Colts runs with the football against the Kansas City Chiefs at Lucas Oil Stadium on October 10, 2010 in Indianapolis, Indiana.  (Photo by Scott Boehm/Getty Images)
    Scott Boehm/Getty Images

    Garcon's numbers are on pace to be way down from last season, when he was a fairly reliable target for Peyton Manning.

    The rise of Austin Collie prompted many owners to dump Garcon in favor of the newest Colts third option behind Reggie Wayne and Dallas Clark.

    But Garcon is finally returning to good health after battling a hamstring problem earlier this year. Last week against the Redskins, he nabbed four passes for 103 yards and a touchdown.

    Manning will continue to chase the 5,000-yard passing mark all season. Wayne, Clark and probably Collie will lead the team in yards, but Garcon will add at least 500 and a handful of TDs in the second half of the season.

No. 1: Bruce Gradkowski, QB, Oakland Raiders

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    OAKLAND, CA - OCTOBER 10:  Bruce Gradkowski #5 of the Oakland Raiders passes the ball against the San Diego Chargers at Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum on October 10, 2010 in Oakland, California.  (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)
    Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

    The Raiders are not a good team, and they may not win another game. But that doesn't mean their quarterback cannot post good numbers.

    With a healthy Darren McFadden, the Oakland offense is pretty good. Chaz Schilens and Louis Murphy are good receivers, Zach Miller is a very good tight end, and if Darrius Heyward-Bey picks it up, the Raiders are a capable offense.

    Because of the trade for Jason Campbell, teams in your league probably overlooked Gradkowski. But his play this season has won over Tom Cable, and he should be back as the starter this week and for the rest of 2010.