Here are my picks to roll, and get rolled, in Week 7.
Watch ’em roll
Josh Freeman, QB, Buccaneers vs. Saints. Freeman has accumulated 627 passing yards and four touchdowns over his past two games against subpar secondaries. He should continue his roll against the Saints’ 26th-ranked pass defense. Freeman has been in sync with Vincent Jackson and Mike Williams, who also have a good shot to soar at home.
Stevan Ridley, RB, Patriots vs. Jets. The Seahawks kept Ridley in check last week, but the Jets offer a more tantalizing opportunity. Though he must compete for touches with two or three other backs, Ridley remains a high-upside play in a week when six teams are on bye.
C.J. Spiller, RB, Bills vs. Titans. It is painfully clear that Buffalo’s best chance to win is with its powerful running game. Spiller and starter Fred Jackson produced well against Arizona, and they’ll enjoy a softer match-up this week. Both are worth starting, but Spiller gets the edge because of his receiving ability.
Lance Moore, WR, Saints at Buccaneers. Moore has been practicing fully this week and appears set to return to the starting lineup after giving his hamstring nearly three weeks of rest. Look for a nice outing against the woeful Bucs secondary as Drew Brees reconnects with his underrated wideout, especially if Jimmy Graham (ankle) can’t go.
Kenny Britt, WR, Titans at Bills. Though still not fully recovered from last season’s ACL surgery, Britt finally delivered a solid performance a week ago against the Steelers (62 yards, 1 TD). He was targeted 11 times. Look for plenty more passes to come his way.
More thumbs up (excluding the no-brainers): QBs Eli Manning, Ryan Fitzpatrick, Matt Stafford, Carson Palmer; RBs Trent Richardson, Darren McFadden, Doug Martin; WRs Hakeem Nicks, Stevie Johnson, Denarius Moore, Antonio Brown, Dez Bryant.
Roll ’em back
Joe Flacco, QB, Ravens at Texans. Aaron Rodgers embarrassed the Texans’ defense last weekend, but Flacco is no Rodgers. Houston’s defenders will have a chip on their shoulder and a plan to limit the Ravens’ middle-of-the-road passing attack. Flacco has posted just two TDs over the past three weeks.
Montario Hardesty, RB, Browns at Colts. Hardesty was a popular waiver-wire addition this week, but Trent Richardson (ribs) claims to be “pain free,” and all signs point to him returning and carrying the load against the awful Colts run defense. If Hardesty produces, it would come in garbage time or because Richardson has a setback.
Mikel Leshoure, RB, Lions at Bears. Chicago boasts the NFL’s stingiest run defense, with only 66 yards allowed per game and just one rushing TD surrendered all season. Leshoure is no sure bet against most defenses, but he’s especially ill-suited to prosper in Chicago.
Brandon Lloyd, WR, Patriots vs. Jets. He’ll be dealing with a sore shoulder and blanket coverage from Antonio Cromartie. New England also has both its tight ends back to draw targets away from Lloyd, who has only one touchdown as a Patriot.
Brandon Gibson, WR, Rams vs. Packers. Green Bay leads the league in sacks, and Sam Bradford has gone down 18 times (28th-worst in the NFL). Gibson has been getting a lot of fantasy attention since Danny Amendola’s injury, but he’s unlikely to fare well with his inconsistent quarterback under pressure.
More thumbs down: QBs Sam Bradford, Christian Ponder, John Skelton; RBs Steven Jackson, DeAngelo Williams, Jonathan Stewart, Shonn Greene, Mark Ingram, Vick Ballard, BenJarvus Green-Ellis, William Powell; WRs Pierre Garcon, Andrew Hawkins, Andre Roberts, Jerome Simpson.
TAKING A FLIER
Josh Gordon, WR, Browns at Colts. Over the past two weeks, the rookie has turned only five receptions into three touchdowns. Two of those TD catches covered more than 60 yards; so it’s all or nothing with Gordon. The Colts have yielded 10 passing scores.
Don’t be the bonehead who … gives up after six weeks because of a bad start. Many leagues allow wild-card playoff entries for high-scoring teams with poor win-loss records. And injuries to key players can turn the tide for high-flying squads at any time, providing an opening to regain your footing. If nothing else, keep playing for pride and the integrity of your league.