Outliers, Week 7

A comparison of the weekly positional rankings and the Top 200, this is an output of the players who could either have unexpected good or poor fantasy weeks.

This article will take a weekly look at players who are either undervalued or overvalued in a given week. The outlier value players offer is calculated by a comparison between the Top 200 forward, a look at the top 200 players with the whole season in mind, and the weekly Footballguys rankings. Both sources are from the Footballguys.com subscriber content. An emphasis will be on the players with the largest differences between the season outlook and this week only. Also, a preference will be given to differences for the higher ranked players. Some of these differences will be due to injury, the matchup of the week, or short-term situation.  Now, let's look at this week's outlier players. 


Carson Wentz

  • Top 200 ranking: 9
  • Weekly ranking: 4
  • Difference: +5

Wentz has played very well of late.  Philadelphia hosts Washington in a divisional matchup that the Eagles need to win to take command of the division.  The timing could not be much better as he gets to face a secondary without Josh Norman.  The Eagles’ receivers have been on fire.  The trio of Alshon Jeffery, Nelson Agholor, and tight end Zach Ertz has enabled Wentz to put up elite numbers through the first one-third of the season. This should continue in Week 7.

Carson Palmer

  • Top 200 ranking: 17
  • Weekly ranking: 9
  • Difference: +8

The addition of Adrian Peterson inserted balance into the Arizona offense.  This balance enabled Palmer to have a big game last week, as the offense scored 38 points against Tampa Bay.  He should be able to light up the Rams defense in a similar fashion.  With his receivers now healthy, this is a good game for the 3-3, Palmer-led Cardinals to draw even with the division-leading Rams.  Palmer makes a solid starter with Matthew Stafford and Deshaun Watson on bye this week.   

Eli Manning

  • Top 200 ranking: 19
  • Weekly ranking: 28
  • Difference: -9

Even though the Giants won last Sunday night, Manning was not a great fantasy option.  New York is void of receivers (with Beckham and Marshall gone for the year and Shepard iffy) and now faces Seattle coming off a bye.  No, we would not recommend starting Manning most weeks, but are more ardent than usual in this belief. 

Jameis Winston


  • Top 200 ranking: 12
  • Weekly ranking: 21
  • Difference: -9


There are several reasons to remove Winston from your starting lineups this week.  He suffered a should injury early in last week’s loss at Arizona, causing Ryan Fitzpatrick to come into the contest.  There is talk that Winston will try to play against the Bills Sunday in Buffalo. Back-to-back road games, each 1,000-yards from each other and home adds a layer of difficulty.  But, the main reason we do not like Winston this week is the matchup.  Buffalo has been terrific on defense in 2017.  The Bills are the third-best defense in limiting fantasy points to the quarterback position.  Add in the fact that Buffalo is coming off a bye week and has had two weeks to prepare for Tampa Bay only adds to the recommendation to bench Winston this week. 

Running Back

Adrian Peterson


  • Top 200 ranking: 24
  • Weekly ranking: 16
  • Difference: +8


Peterson looked like the player of old in the game against Tampa Bay this week.  Sunday, he gets the Rams in a great matchup.  Los Angeles is the worst defense in the league at containing the opposing fantasy running backs.  The Rams yield 32 PPR (Points Per Reception) points each week to opposing running backs.  Peterson is the focal point of the Cardinals running game and could be eyeing another 100-yard outburst and multiple touchdowns once again. 

Ezekiel Elliott


  • Top 200 ranking: 24
  • Weekly ranking: TBD
  • Difference: +TBD


After the late-Tuesday court ruling that Elliott can play this week against San Francisco, the Dallas star becomes an elite play for fantasy owners.  The Cowboys play the lowly 49ers and should command an early lead.  He will dominate touches against a bad defense.  San Francisco is the third-worst run defense, giving up 29 PPR points to opposing backfields.  This is a high-ceiling game for Elliott.

Doug Martin


  • Top 200 ranking: 18
  • Weekly ranking: 30
  • Difference: -12


Only Buffalo and Carolina have yet to allow a fantasy RB1 game this season.  Martin and the Buccaneers travel north to face the Bills in a tough matchup.  The Buffalo defense has been one of the biggest surprises this season.  In a potentially low-scoring game, there is little upside in starting Martin in PPR leagues.  He does not catch enough passes to have a high weekly floor. 

Mark Ingram II


  • Top 200 ranking: 7
  • Weekly ranking: 10
  • Difference: -3


Ingram lit up the Lions last week at home in a game the Saints controlled from the first quarter on.  He has big fantasy games in contests the Saints have the lead and rely on the running game to take the air out of the ball to control the clock.  With the game in Green Bay this week, we do not like the chances of New Orleans commanding a lead and running often.  In fact, we expect quarterback Brett Hundley to be much-improved and the Lambeau Field fans to give the upset-minded Packers the victory. 

Wide Receiver

Adam Thielen


  • Top 200 ranking: 20
  • Weekly ranking: 8
  • Difference: +12


In what would normally be a difficult matchup against the Baltimore Ravens, Thielen is undervalued due to the expectation that Stefon Diggs will miss the game with a groin injury.  Even if Diggs plays, he will not be close to full speed.  Case Keenum has played better as the season progresses and Jerick McKinnon looks good.  The improvement of these two players will help keep the focus off of Thielen.  The Vikings do not have many other offensive weapons so Thielen could see a dozen pass targets thrown his way in the contest. 

Rishard Matthews


  • Top 200 ranking: 41
  • Weekly ranking: 21
  • Difference: +20


Matthews has been excellent while rookie Corey Davis has been sidelined.  Matthews is only competing with Eric Decker for targets and gets a few deep passes every game.  The contest in Cleveland should be one Matthews can catch five or more passes and possibly reach pay dirt.  Mariota has trust in Matthews, his only holdover receiver from last year.  Davis, Eric Decker, and Taywan Taylor are all new to the team this year. 

T.Y. Hilton


  • Top 200 ranking: 12
  • Weekly ranking: 19
  • Difference: -7


The Colts and quarterback Jacoby Brissett host the Jaguars Sunday in a tough divisional matchup.  Jacksonville is a top-three defense against opposing wide receivers and Brissett is not the passer to change the trend.  Hilton is just collateral damage.  Yes, there is a chance that the speedy receiver will break off a big gain.  But, he is more of a low-end fantasy WR2 than WR1 this week.  Brissett could not expose the Titans on Monday Night Football and the Jaguars are much better against the pass. 

Michael Crabtree


  • Top 200 ranking: 8
  • Weekly ranking: 15
  • Difference: -7


Crabtree has been the lone producing wideout for the Raiders this season.  Coming off a loss to the Steelers last week, we expect Andy Reid to have a game plan for limiting the veteran.  The poor play of Amari Cooper has been well-chronicled this season.  This puts even more pressure on Crabtree to make big plays in a must-win game for Oakland. 

Tight End

Austin Seferian-Jenkins


  • Top 200 ranking: 13
  • Weekly ranking: 4
  • Difference: +9


The Jets are looking to rebound from the tough loss to the Patriots last Sunday.  The Josh McCown-led offense will look to the young tight end.  The Dolphins are the seventh-worst defense in holding opposing tight ends in check.  We like the chances for the youngster to have a monster game.

Jason Witten

  • Top 200 ranking: 7
  • Weekly ranking: 11
  • Difference: -4

Witten and the Cowboys face the 49ers this week.  San Francisco is unusually strong versus opposing tight ends, holding them to a total of less than 42 PPR points through six games.  While the 49ers have not played many elite tight ends this year, this stat shows the young defense has the speed to keep opposing tight ends from making big plays. 

Evan Engram

  • Top 200 ranking: 4
  • Weekly ranking: 9
  • Difference: -5

Coming off a bye week, we expect the Seattle Seahawks to have a plan to contain the young tight end.  Engram played exceptionally well versus Denver a week ago, but will have an uphill climb this Sunday.  The Seahawks have a strong defense and will look to take away the Giants best offensive weapon. 

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