Studs, Duds, & Sleepers: Week 7

October 20, 2021

We are into ‘Bye Season’, which means you may be in a position to start players you otherwise would not…that makes soaking up this week’s Studs, Duds, and Sleepers knowledge piece all the more important!



Aaron Rodgers, GB:

After his brutal start to the season, Rodgers has thrown 12 touchdowns to just one interception in his last five games and posted a 95+ rating in all five of those games. This week he gets a Football Team which is giving up an average of 309.5 yards per game, has surrendered 16 touchdowns through the air…ranking them dead last in both categories.

Kyler Murray, AZ:

Murray has accounted for 17 touchdowns through his team’s first six games and I don’t see the Texans and all of their issues slowing him down. 

Others receiving votes:

Matthew Stafford, LAR:

Stafford is on pace for the best season of his career and I think he will have a little extra motivation going up against his old team this week.


Running backs:

Derrick Henry, Ten:

Henry is on pace for 2,000+ rushing yards and 27 touchdowns. He is averaging 130+ yards per game and has 260 more rushing yards than the next closest back. Given the Chiefs inability to stop the run (133.2 ypg) and the Titans desire to keep Mahomes and company off the field, expect a huge dose of Henry this week.

Aaron Jones, GB:

Jones ranks in the top ten in rushing yards, and while he only has two rushing touchdowns, he is tied for ninth in receiving touchdowns with nine. He and Rodgers should put up some big numbers this week against a Football Team defense which has yet to regain it’s success from last year. 

Others receiving votes:

Darrell Henderson Jr., LAR:

Henderson finds himself on this list for the second time in two weeks. In just five games, he has nearly 500 all-purpose yards and five touchdowns and has put up 99+ all-purpose yards in each of his last three games. Look for he and Stafford to have big games this week against the winless Lions.


Pass Catchers:

Davante Adams, GB:

Notice a trend? I like the Packers matchup this week against the Football Team…especially the matchup of the best wide receivers against the worst pass defense in the league.

Cooper Kupp, LAR:

Trend number two: I like the Rams versus the Lions matchup as well. While the Lions have a middle of the pack pass defense, I don’t see them being any matchup for Stafford and Kupp. Kupp leads the league in receptions (46), targets (68), receiving touchdowns (7) and is second only to Davante Adams in yards (653).

Others receiving votes:

Calvin Ridley, Atl:

Ridley is not off to a great start, but has seen 34 passes come his way over his last three games and has pulled in 22 of those. I like his matchup this week against a bad Dolphins defense. 




Justin Fields, Chi:

Fields has had a less than stellar start to his NFL career and a matchup this week against the Bucs defense is not going to help things get any better. He will break out eventually, just don’t look for it to happen this week.

Zach Wilson, NYJ:

If you are tempted to start Wilson this week due to byes…don’t! His four touchdowns in five games ranks him 29th and he leads the league with nine interceptions. 

Others receiving votes:
Jared Goff, Det:

It may be tempting to start Goff this week against his old team with the thought being he will be motivated and tear up his old team. However, I don’t expect that to happen. Not against the Rams defense with the lack of weapons Goff has.


Running backs:

Any Browns Running Back:

Given the Browns successful running attack, some may be tempted to pick up (and start) the Browns third running back this week, but that would not be a wise choice my friend. With Baker Mayfield out, and possibly both offensive tackles being out, this could be a long day for the Browns and whoever is running the football.

Melvin Gordon III, Den:

I don’t like any of the backs in this Browns Broncos matchup. Along with a potent pass rush, the Browns are only giving up 87 yards per game on the ground. 

Others receiving votes:

Damien Williams/Khalil Herbert, Chi:

Williams and Herbert have both shined in David Montgomery’s absence, but I don’t expect either to put up RB1 or RB2 numbers this week against the league’s number one run defense. 


Pass Catchers:

Any Browns Pass Catchers:

Case Keenum is going to be starting on a short week, will be without his top two running backs and may be without either starting tackle. That is not a recipe for success, and therefore I wouldn’t count on any Browns pass catchers this week.  

Allen Robinson, Chi: 

Robinson doesn’t rank in the top 50 receivers this year in terms of yards or catches and ranks second on his own team. Robinson has only put up 50 yards in two of the Bears six games this season and has just one touchdown. Until he and Fields show some rapport, he isn’t worth a start.  

Others receiving votes:

Robert Tonyan, GB:

If you are like me and drafted Tonyan, you have probably dropped him by now. If you have a tight end who is injured or on bye and are looking for someone to pick up, look elsewhere as he has just 11 catches and 92 yards in the first six games.  




Sam Darnold, Car:

Darnold has been more than serviceable this season and his running ability is making him a borderline QB1. In fact, only Derrick Henry has more rushing touchdowns than Darnold’s five. 

Matt Ryan, Atl:

The Falcons have been far from impressive this season, but Ryan has 10 passing touchdowns and they have a friendly matchup this week against the Dolphins.  

Ryan Tannehill, Ten:

Tannehill has just one game of multiple touchdowns this season, but the way the Chiefs defense has been playing this season, he could be worth a spot start if your starter is out or on bye. 


Running backs:

Chuba Hubbard, Car:

Hubbard hasn’t had great success in Christian McCaffrey’s absence, but with a favorable matchup against the league’s 29th ranked rush defense and 46 touches in the last two games, he is a flex option.

Kenyan Drake, LV:

Maybe with a new coach, Drake will see more action. He did have his best game as a Raider last week, putting up 73 all-purpose yards and two touchdowns.   

Chase Edmonds, AZ:

Edmonds has not had a great season, but he gets a Cardinals defense which ranks 31st against the run and has given up a league leading 11 rushing touchdowns. 



Pass Catchers:

Tyler Boyd, Cin:

The emergence of Jamar Chase and Tee Higgins has really cut into the Boyd’s fantasy value, but he has a history of big games against the Ravens.

Jaylen Waddle, Mia:

In Tua’s first game back, Waddle had 13 targets, 10 catches, 70 yards and two touchdowns. While you can’t count on touchdowns, 13 targets is a good sign.

T.Y. Hilton, Ind:

In his first game of the season – and first game ever with Carson Wentz – Hilton led the Colts in targets, catches and yards. Those are encouraging signs. 


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