Start ‘Em, Sit 'Em is the ultimate look at the best and worst matchups based on a PPR scoring system in fantasy football. This column will not cover the elite players in the NFL like Patrick Mahomes, Christian McCaffrey, Davante Adams, or Travis Kelce. Instead, I'll look at the players you have the most questions about to help you set the most effective starting lineup possible. For all of your final fantasy lineup decisions, be sure to check out my weekly player rankings which will be updated daily throughout the 2021 NFL season.
Byes: Bills, Chargers, Cowboys, Jaguars, Steelers, Vikings
Week 7 Start ‘Em: Wide Receivers
Start of the Week
D.J. Moore at Giants (1 p.m. ET, Fox): This one is on the more obvious side, though Moore hasn’t been all that great in the last two weeks (9.9 PPG). He should bust out of his recent funk against the Giants, who have struggled to stop wideouts this season. The G-Men have allowed the fourth-most points per game to opposing receivers, and their defense is tied for the fifth-most touchdowns allowed to receivers lined out wide.
Week 7 Start 'Em, Sit 'Em
Brandin Cooks at Cardinals (4:25 p.m. ET, CBS): Cooks has been a target hog this season, seeing at least seven in all but one game, including four contests with double digits. That trend should continue against the Cardinals, who have allowed the fourth-most fantasy points per game and seven touchdowns to receivers lined out wide. In a game that should find the Texans behind, Cooks should be heavily involved again.
Jaylen Waddle vs. Falcons (1 p.m. ET, Fox): Waddle is coming off a huge game in London, posting 10 catches for 70 yards and two touchdowns. He’s seen at least six targets in four of his last five games, and a matchup against the Falcons is favorable. Their defense has allowed seven touchdowns and the 10th-most points per game to receivers, and five wideouts have scored 16-plus fantasy points in their five contests.
Sterling Shepard vs. Panthers (1 p.m. ET, Fox): The Giants receivers are a mess of injuries, as Kenny Golladay, Kadarius Toney and Darius Slayton are all banged up. If two or three of them miss this week’s game against the Panthers, Shepard would be a nice flex option. He led the team in targets last week (14), hauling in 10 passes for 76 yards. Carolina has allowed seven wideouts to score at least 14 fantasy points, too.
Darnell Mooney at Buccaneers (4:25 p.m. ET, CBS): Mooney got into the end zone last week, and he appears to be the favorite target of Justin Fields when the Bears throw the football. This week he's a risk-reward flex option as Mooney will face off against a Buccaneers defense that has allowed seven touchdowns and the sixth-most fantasy points per game to wide receivers. With six teams off, Mooney is worth a look.
- Michael Pittman Jr. at 49ers (8:20 p.m. ET, NBC)
- Marquez Callaway vs. Seahawks (Mon. 8:15 p.m. ET, ESPN)
- Mecole Hardman at Titans (1 p.m. ET, CBS)
- Sterling Shepard vs. Panthers ($5,600)
- Jaylen Waddle vs. Falcons ($5,600)
- Darnell Mooney at Buccaneers ($4,600)
Week 7 Sit ‘Em: Wide Receivers
Sit of the Week
Henry Ruggs III vs. Eagles (4:05 p.m. ET, Fox): Ruggs went off last week, posting 97 yards and a touchdown in a win over the Broncos. However, he had just four targets in the game, and he had failed to score more than nine points in his previous two games. I wouldn't chase the points against the Eagles, who have allowed just two touchdowns and the fourth-fewest points per game to opposing wideouts this season.
Tee Higgins at Ravens (1 p.m. ET, CBS): Higgins has been quiet since his return to the gridiron, posting just 76 yards and no touchdowns in a win over the Lions. He has a tough matchup next on the schedule, as the Bengals will face the Ravens in Baltimore. Their defense has been tough on receivers lined out wide, allowing two touchdowns and the third-fewest fantasy points per game. At best, Higgins is a risk/reward flex.
Tyler Lockett vs. Saints (Mon. 8:15 p.m. ET, ESPN): Lockett is doing what Lockett does, which is have a few big games and then produce nothing but stinkers. He's failed to score more than 10.7 fantasy points in four straight games, including a 5.5-point bomb in Geno Smith's first start. While you probably have to play him during "bye-mageddon," you don't have to like it. Temper your expectations this week.
Jakobi Meyers vs. Jets (1 p.m. ET, CBS): Meyers had a decent performance last week in a loss to the Cowboys, and it could have been better had he not had a touchdown catch nullified. Unfortunately, he’s still a tough sell for me against a Jets defense that has allowed no touchdowns and the fewest fantasy points per game to receivers lined out wide. New York's stingy pass also held Meyers to just 7.8 points in Week 2.
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Corey Davis at Patriots (1 p.m. ET, CBS): Davis and the Jets are fresh off a bye, but a matchup against the Patriots won’t make him an attractive option in fantasy leagues. Their defense has been tough on receivers lined out wide, as it’s allowed just three touchdowns and 21.5 fantasy points a game. New England also shut Davis down back in Week 2, limiting him to two catches for eight yards and a mere 2.8 fantasy points.
- Christian Kirk vs. Texans (4:25 p.m. ET, CBS)
- Robby Anderson at Giants (1 p.m. ET, CBS)
- Brandon Aiyuk vs. Colts (8:20 p.m. ET, NBC)
- Julio Jones vs. Chiefs ($6,100)
- Henry Ruggs III vs. Eagles ($5,500)
- Jakobi Meyers vs. Jets ($5,300)
Michael Fabiano is an award-winning fantasy football analyst on Sports Illustrated and a member of the Fantasy Sports Writers Association (FSWA) Hall of Fame. Click here to read all his articles here on SI Fantasy. You can follow Michael on Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, and Instagram for your late-breaking fantasy news and the best analysis in the business!
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