The heart of bye season is upon us. Packers, Raiders, Seahawks and Steelers are all on bye this week. Chargers, Cowboys, Falcons, and Titans next week. Melvin Gordon owners, next week might be your opportunity to pick up your handcuff– Austin Ekeler. Your league-mates are scrambling to plug in holes and valuable assets are hitting the wire. I’ll keep my soap box brief this week since I wrote about this previously, just keep an eye on your leagues transaction report to see if you can find any loot.

I promised you names and we have plenty to give you for week 7. Enjoy!

***I am leaving for vacation this week and finished this weeks report early on Thursday. Below I update you on the most recent RB injury news as of Wednesday/Thursday morning. Keep an eye on the practice reports this week, a lot can change from Wednesday to Friday. Also, follow me on twitter, I will keep you up to date on any important injury news to your running backs.***

Repeat Offenders

  • Ito SmithYes, Ito is now a real thing. Devonta Freeman was placed on IR and will be out at least 8 weeks. Ito out touched Tevin Coleman 13 to 11 and had a nice 14-yard TD run in week 6. Last week, I highlighted Tevins inability to be effective with the starting job in plus matchups. Ito shows pop and the ability to gain yards after contact. Below, James Koh, highlights very telling stats about the two Atlanta backs. Ito is inline for an increased work load moving forward. I know you have been following my reports since the beginning of the season and already had Ito on your roster before this weeks waiver frenzy, right? I like Ito as a cheap DFS play this weekend too. Only $3,800 on Draftkings.

  • Latavius Murray- It happened, the Vikings run game showed us life even without Dalvin Cook. Latavius ripped off 158 total yards and 1TD on 25 touches. I warned about getting ahead of this in my week 5 report when owners were giving up on Murray and the Vikings run game. Keep in mind, the Cardinals were a plus matchup and Cook is nearing return but hammys like to linger, man. Dalvin Cook was a full participant on Wednesday but I still recommend keeping Murray on your roster. Another great opportunity for Cook owners to add your handcuff if non-Cook owners drop him. Before I hit submit on this article, I have read conflicting reports on Cooks’ Thursday practice. He did not practice, left in the middle, and practiced in full. I repeat, keep Murray in cuffs!
  • Bilal Powell- Isaiah Crowell was out touched again by Powell in week 5, barely. In a game where the Jets racked up points neither back found the end zone. Sure, we might see Crowell spike again in future weeks but it will be hard to predict and for him to replicate another week 5 performance. Unless our beautiful mind, Rudy Gamble, can tell us otherwise. Crowell missed practice on Wednesday and is dealing with a foot injury. We will see how things shake out here but I like Powell as a bye week sub, in PPR formats.
  • Nick ChubbAs a Hyde owner, I am getting nervous about Chubb time on the horizon. He will be in cuffs permanently for indecent exposure if he continues to average over 10ypc on the season. Hyde owners, get ahead of this before his name becomes the hottest on the wire. Hyde is only averaging 3.2ypc this season. Hyde will continue to get lead back duties but come fantasy playoff time, Chubb could be in the driver seat. We are talking about the Browns and they have a history of poor coaching decisions. We will see how long it takes for them to figure this one out.
  • Alfred Morris and Kyle Jusczcyk- As much as I like to remind you of when I have been ahead on a player, I have no problem owning when I missed. Both Morris and Jusczcyk were complete duds against Green Bay. Yes, we faded Morris last week but I did not imagine a 0 point game from him. I will release Morris from cuffs if this usage continues. Jusczcyk was targeted 3 times but put the pigskin on the ground. I was suprised Breida suited up but I am keeping Jusczcyk on our watchlist if Breida’s slew of injuries eventually keep him out.
  • Rashaad Penny and Mike Davis- Chris Carson remains the back to own in Seattle. I was surprised to see Penny out touch Mike after two solid weeks. This is becoming a headache but for handcuff purposes worth discussing. If Carson goes down again, both have upside in a rush first offense. Tough to roster either coming off of their week 6 performances but worth a stash in deeper leagues.
  • Quick Hits- The Texans backfield might be the Titans 2.0. Is either back worthy of our bench? I am starting to worry about the Texans offense as a whole. Let us revisit them after this weekend. Sit Lamar Miller and I am okay with dropping Alfred Blue, for now. Do we consider TJ Yeldon a handcuff anymore? Not as long as Leonard Fournette is missing games. Yeldon is a RB2/Flex with Fournette out. I gave my thoughts on Corey Clement and Wendell Smallwood last week after the TNF week 6 game, please read here. Alex Collins finally threw us a bone and Javorius Allen was a non-factor. Do not drop Allen in PPR league, yet. Nyhiem Hines took a backseat after Marlon Mack returned and looked good (93 yards on 13 touches). Mack will assume lead duties but the lack of offensive weapons in Indianapolis makes Hines worth a bench stash in PPR leagues.

New Offenders

  • Jalen RichardIt is hard for me to recommend you anyone on the Raiders offense but this might be the key to Richards value. The Raiders are “concerned” about Marshawn Lynch’s groin injury. If he is sidelined, Richard is an interesting add for Lynch owners. Some would argue Doug Martin is the handcuff to own. I expect the Raiders to play from behind in a lot of games this season. This favors Richard over Martin. He is the preferred passing down back. Keep an eye on the injury report for updates on Lynch. Look elsewhere if you can.
  • Jamaal CharlesOn the ‘Wanted List’ last week, Jamaal Charles finds himself detained in handcuffs for now. TJ Yeldon has been fighting his own injuries this season and sat out practice early this week due to foot/ankle injuries. Keep a close eye on this situation. Doug Marone said he is hopeful of Fournette returning from his hammy injury this week. If Yeldon and Fournette both end up out, Charles is the only back left to play in JAX. Do not rush to add Charles until more comes out on the availability of Yeldon and Fournette. Hopefully you have other options to consider here.

My Treat

  • Tre’Quan Smith (WR)- The Saints placed Ted Ginn Jr. on IR Thursday. Smith becomes the #2 WR in a Drew Brees lead offense. This is a great rest of season play. Risky to fire him up against the Ravens but I like his stock for the rest of the season. Enough said, add him now.

That is all for this week my brothers and sisters. Follow me on twitter to stay updated on RB injury news. @ me with your questions and comments. Good luck and see you all next week.

  1. Scott says:
    (link)

    Would you start trequan smith, calloway, kearse, or albert wilson this week. .5ppr. Calloway has a great matchup but has had some drops. Smith has a tough matchup but upside. Enunwa is out. Osweiler is starting again so he may look for Wilson.

    Last question. Would you start gore over Collins or coleman? I fear playing the saints may cause buck Allen to be used more unless last week was a precursor to see more of collins on the field. Coleman is splitting and has had mutilpe chances to claim this backfield but ito smith wont go away. Gore has a good matchup and is also splitting time. Thx

    • Nic Romero

      Nic Romero says:
      (link)

      @Scott: i have kearse fired up in a couple of spots myself. vikings pass d has been suspect and with Enunwa + Pryor banged up it leaves kearse as a top option for darnold. I see him racking up targets and would recommend him over the others in ppr. can’t trust any of the dolphins receivers in my opinion. calloway has to show me it before i can trust him. i like smiths upside for the rest of the season and maybe has the highest ceiling of the the 4 you mentioned but i dont feel comfortable starting against Baltimore. Kearse is the safer player and smith is the high risk-high reward imo.

      the RB question is a tough one. i think gore gets 12-15 touches, collins has definitely earned more usage but i can agree with you about the game script favoring allen or even just the baltimore offense having to air out more in general leaving out collins for opportunity. i still would like to see more from collins personally. i have him in a couple of leagues and happy that he produced last week but not starting him yet. a lot of buzz around coleman and his usage as a receiver. maybe i give him the slight nod in full ppr over for but i would put my money on gore being able to land in the end zone after Drake fumbled at the goal line. hope this helps and good luck.

  2. Chucky says:
    (link)

    Thoughts on both Benjamin and Zay Jones of Buffalo, with Derek Anderson under center? Benjamin has some history with Anderson in Carolina.

    • Nic Romero

      Nic Romero says:
      (link)

      @Chucky: if you put me in a corner, im taking Benjamin. definitely history there. DA has thrown 3 TD passes to Benji back in Carolina when Anderson came in to play a couple of games. i’m actually firing him up as a low cost dart in a DFS lineup this weekend.

  3. Steve Stevenson says:
    (link)

    .5 PPR, pretty well set at WR (Edelman flex, Godwin on bench) but T. Smith is tempting. However, with Breida at RB2 most of my bench is taken up by RB stashes/insurance. Drop Gore for T. Smith, or hold?

    • Nic Romero

      Nic Romero says:
      (link)

      @Steve Stevenson: I’d be curious about the rest of your roster. If you are well set at WR maybe go Smith over Godwin. Brees + NO Offense > Jameis + TB Offense. Godwin did receive a lot of targets last week but don’t trust him on a weekly basis. If you aren’t starting Godwin over any of your other WRs anyways then Smith is the better long play/upside than Godwin. If deep at RB then yes Gore for Smith all day.

      • steve stevenson says:
        (link)

        @Nic Romero: Thx. One of those bench RB is Chubb so now suddenly life’s looking better and I can probably lose Gore. It’s a superflex league:
        Q: Mahomes Brees
        R: Kamara Chubb Breida etc.
        W: Allen Diggs Edelman etc.
        T: Kittle

  4. Clokwerc says:
    (link)

    I need some advice, should I drop MVS from GB for T. Smith from NO, and pick up T. Smith in another league for M. Davis from Sea…

    • Nic Romero

      Nic Romero says:
      (link)

      @Clokwerc: def t Smith for mike Davis. MVS has looked good but with Allison and Cobb hopeful to return rest of season upside is higher for Smith.

  5. Btdrnks says:
    (link)

    So Chubb is now the presumed Starter in a Cleveland?

    • Nic Romero

      Nic Romero says:
      (link)

      @Btdrnks: yes, at least 1st-2nd down back and goal line. Yes Dukes value gets a bump in PPR too.

  6. howie2978 says:
    (link)

    All of a sudden I’ve got a (good) decision to make. Do I start Michel or Chubb as my flex this week? Thanks!

    • Nic Romero

      Nic Romero says:
      (link)

      @howie2978: nice problem to have now. hard to overlook the 43 touches for Michel this last 2 weeks. Can see Chubb getting eased in this week. Had Hyde behind Michel thus week even with the matchup with the Bucs. Chubb is tempting and a risky play given the unknown with his usage this week. Safe play is Michel. I’ll fall on this sword with you this week. Starting Michel over Chubb myself.

      • Btdrnks says:
        (link)

        @Nic Romero: so J Howard, Corey Davis or chubb at flex?

        • Nic Romero

          Nic Romero says:
          (link)

          @Btdrnks: between Howard and Chubb. Let’s go Chubb..reports out he’ll be given the starting job this week. Cohen is earning more touches. Also, can see bears having to pass a lot.

          • Btdrnks says:
            (link)

            @Nic Romero: thanks!

  7. Mike says:
    (link)

    Hey Nic, I need a WR for ROS and to win this week. Help me out! Who should I drop if any? Here’s my team (PPR league):
    RB: Clement, Breida, Ito Smith, Alex Collins
    (Cook and Conner unavailable)
    WR: John Brown, Gollady,(AB and Cooper BYE)
    TE: Burton, Reed, Njoku
    I was leaning on Reed… decisions, decisions! Agh!

    • Mike says:
      (link)

      @Mike: Sorry forgot to mention…. Taylor Gabriel, Willie Snead, Corey Davis are available

      • Mike says:
        (link)

        @Mike: also forgot Chris Godwin, Coutee, chester rogers as other upside WRs

        • Nic Romero

          Nic Romero says:
          (link)

          @Mike: i have pick up Gabriel in a number of my leagues. Like him this week and moving forward. Playing him in DFS. Willie Snead this week and maybe moving forward to if he continues to eat targets like he is. I think it def comes down to one or two of the TE worth dropping. TE is a low value position so worth dropping for higher upside at RB/WR. I haven’t been able to start Burton with confidence yet or reed lately. Def keeping Njoku. Burton maybe has more upside but Alex Smith has a history of utilizing TE and so does WSH just not happening. Agree leaning towards dropping Reed over Burton for now. Another big one to consider dropping Ian cooper. Can we trust him or that offense? My priority would be Gabriel then Snead.

  8. clokwerc says:
    (link)

    Who do i start.. Hyde was just traded and i just picked up Chubb… I have TY Hilton on my bench too.. Who do i start Chubb or Hilton?

  9. clokwerc says:
    (link)

    Who do i start.. Hyde was just traded and i just picked up Chubb… I have TY Hilton on my bench too.. Who di i start Chubb or Hilton?

    • Nic Romero

      Nic Romero says:
      (link)

      @clokwerc: oooh, this is a tough one. If fully healthy, Hilton has the higher ceiling. Chubb is going against the Bucs D and has been productive so I don’t expect them to “ease” him in. I do believe If that game gets out of hand though the Duke will get more use. Colts are desperate for playmakers and Luck loves targeting Hilton. Can argue both sides for either player. I think I lean Hilton over Chubb for now.

  10. Ron P. says:
    (link)

    I’m spreading a wide net for help here. Trade offer in a standard league.

    Give: Chubb and Crabtree
    Get: Coleman and JuJu

    My other RB are David Johnson, Howard, Mack, Carson and Miller (Need to drop 1 as well for a legal roster – Carson or Miller???)

    My other WR are M. Thomas, D. Adams, Golladay, Baldwin, D. Thomas

    • Nic Romero

      Nic Romero says:
      (link)

      @Ron P.: Based off your roster. WR is a strength over RB. So to me comes down to upgrading your RB. I like Chubb over Coleman. More upside with Chubb. Tevins had his chance to show us something. Keepn Chubb. Miller is the only one I’d drop if you end up dropping. But I’m keeping Chubb

  11. Nic Romero

    Nic Romero says:
    (link)

    Based off your roster. WR is a strength over RB on your roster. So to me comes down to upgrading your RB. I like Chubb over Coleman. More upside with Chubb. Tevins had his chance to show us something. Keepn Chubb. Miller is the only one I’d drop if you end up dropping. But I’m keeping Chubb.

  12. friar says:
    (link)

    I’m wrestling with a few waiver wire decisions and would love some input.

    In my 12-team 0.5 ppr league, my team is rather pitiful at RB, but strong play at the other positions (esp. WR) has carried me to a 5-0 record. This means that, as I comb the waiver wire, I have the luxury of looking for players who might help me win a championship, rather than needing to scrap out every remaining win in the regular season. There are a bunch of guys I’m tempted to pick up, so I’m looking for guidance on how to use my limited roster spots.

    Current roster:
    QB: Watson
    RB: Michel, Hyde, Ekeler
    WR: Thielen, Hopkins, Michael Thomas, Jefferey, Boyd, Godwin
    TE: Burton, Hooper
    DL: Bernard (likely his last week of DL-eligibility, then I’ll have to either drop him or someone else to make roster space)

    Players I’m tempted to pick up include…
    QB: Mayfield, Stafford (potential one-week pickup while banged up Watson plays JAX)
    RB: Ito Smith (biggest need, esp. with Hyde getting traded to the Jags)
    WR: Goodwin, Anderson, Tre-Quan Smith (best players, least need given my depth at WR)

    I think there’s a case for dropping Godwin and/or one of my TEs (not sure which one) in order to pick up some of the waiver wire guys, but I’m not sure who to prioritize, or who to drop. Dropping Hyde or Ekeler might also be an option, although I’m so thin at RB I don’t know that it’d be worth it. What would you recommend?

    • friar says:
      (link)

      @friar: @friar: whoops, I meant I’m 6-0…in case that matters :-P

    • Nic Romero

      Nic Romero says:
      (link)

      @friar: A lot of different ways to dice this. Quick and simple, yes Godwin is safe to drop he’ll never start over your current WR. Take it a step further and see if you can trade a WR for top RB. Maybe Hopkins or Jefferey. Have great value that you can leverage for a legit RB1 and maybe QB. I like Stafford for shear pass volume. I also like adding T Smith but not a position of need unless you leverage a trade. Def picking up Smith over Godwin if you only get last priority. Honestly think Hyde to JAX will be a good thing for Hyde owners. Excited about that. I think Burton is close to being droppable but still a weak too early to ambandon ship. I think priority comes between Ito, Stafford and Smith. Think you could argue every week that Stafford has a chance of outacoring Watson and Texans O on any given Sunday.

  13. clokwerc says:
    (link)

    Who do I start, Hyde, Chubb, Hilton, or Gabriel in the flex in league 1?

    K. Johnson, Chubb, or Hilton in league 2?

    Both leagues ppr.

    • Nic Romero

      Nic Romero says:
      (link)

      @clokwerc: I’m going Gabriel in 1. Hilton a very very slight edge over Chubb in 2.

  14. Todd says:
    (link)

    Good Morning, Taylor Gabriel for Ito Smith PPR??? My other RB”s L. Bell, C. Thompson, J, White, A. Jones…..My WR’s are JJ Schuster, D. Adams. M. Evans, T. Boyd and J. Kearse…..Thanks

    • Nic Romero

      Nic Romero says:
      (link)

      @Todd: I’m okay with that trade given your depth at WR and need for RB depth. Maybe see if you can move Kearse for Smith. I think I like Gabriel slightly over Kearse. But if you can’t swing that I’m okay with Having Kearse on your bench.

  15. I got $100 for groceries, $1400 for liquor, and 6,000 for you to go bail a couple of shit puppets out of jail says:
    (link)

    12 teamer PPR with return yards worth same as scrimmage. a guy who probably already had the worst RB’s in the league lost skittles, and i have richard. he came to me first due to that, but he’s also willing to move thielen (maybe, but expensive) or lockett (has more value than any other league here). right when i begged for RB luck i got it 3 times in a matter of less than 2 weeks on barber (dropped and not waivered by anybody), coleman (freeman out for way longer, he’s turning into football tulowitzki), and chubb today.
    QB wentz
    RB (2) barkley, coleman, chubb, barber, royce, richard
    WR (2) k.allen, shepard (but benched now with engram back), jeffery, sanu, ratley, cobb
    TE (1) RSJ
    1 flex
    IR (1) doyle

    trade possibles, tried k.allen + richard for thielen, he came back with
    1. theilen for my k.allen + coleman
    also, might be able to do this:
    2. lockett for richard (he didn’t agree to this yet though)
    obviously i’d not do both, it’d lower my RB depth too much, plus i simply couldn’t use all of: lockett/thielen/jeffery/sanu/cobb/ratley/shepard anyway

    beep, boop, no duplicate doop bop

    2. also, in a half PPR (but rushing yards worth more than receiving, 10 rush per point, 15 receiving per point) which 2 out of these IF melgor doesn’t play: lat murray (cook out), ekeler, c.thompson. it would seem thompson is going to have TONS of targets.

    • Nic Romero

      Nic Romero says:
      (link)

      @I got $100 for groceries, $1400 for liquor, and 6,000 for you to go bail a couple of shit puppets out of jail: I think holding firm on Allen/Richard for Thigpen would be nice! Allen/Coleman, no because of your need for depth at RB. Picking up Lockett slide him to your 4th best wife out. Just edging out Sanu and definitely over rarely/Cobb. I think hang on to Richard unless you can get the Thielen deal.

      If Melvin does t play then Murray and Ekeler. Cowboys line backing core is niice against the run and d line pretty good too. Don’t know if can trust Thompson. We know Murray is lead back hands down and playing jets. Murray got over 20 touches last week and would not be surprised to see it again this week. Ekeler has already had value before even if Mel didn’t go down. If Me is held out I trust the scheme and offense.

      • Nic Romero

        Nic Romero says:
        (link)

        @Nic Romero: auto correct on my phone is killing me. Don’t have my laptop, should be able to make out the typos.

        • I got $100 for groceries, $1400 for liquor, and 6,000 for you to go bail a couple of shit puppets out of jail says:
          (link)

          @Nic Romero: it reads fine
          “does t” clearly reads as doesn’t. and when i see “Me” i know you mean melgor. meanwhile this got a lot easier, as now thompson listed as doubtful anyway, but of course we won’t KNOW he’s out likely till after lat murray already played.

          yeah that’s what i thought about coleman vs richard’s values. interesting that i’ve gotten all 3 responses from you guys.
          1. coleman worth too much, only get thielen if i could lose richard but not coleman
          2. another guy says only do the lockett deal (if opp would do it), or at least he’d prefer that one.
          3. another says get theilen even at the coleman price.
          4. another, thinking it was for a dynasty (i forgot to specify) says hold allen.

Comments are closed.