Week 7 Observations

Week 7 Observations

This article is part of our NFL Observations series.

The first goal is to survive in real life. Check. The second is to survive in Survivor. It wasn't pretty, but the Rams helped me build character while still advancing, something that could not be said for the Buccaneers and Cardinals who softened up their backers with easy times. What's the saying – easy times create weak men, weak mean create hard times, hard times create strong men, strong men created easy times? The Bucs/Cowboys, Ravens/Lions, Patriots/Texans and now Rams/Lions have created a Team of Destiny.  

I've now added a third goal, thanks to my good start on best bets – Dolphins plus 2.5, check, to go to 7-0. Probably dumb luck (1 in 128 at this point, but let's get to 18-0, when it's 1 in 260K, and I'll start arguing for skill.)

  • The 49ers are bad. Jimmy Garoppolo is just a guy like Jared Goff and Jeff George. If your initials are J.G., chances are that's the case. If you're a first-round tight end with initials E.E., (Eric Ebron, Evan Engram), it's also the case.
  • Elijah Mitchell (18-107-1) looked like he was shot out of a cannon on the first drive and ordinary after that. Maybe once the rain started, the Colts realized they didn't have to worry about Garoppolo. Unfortunately, JaMycal Hasty (3-1-0, 6-3-15-0) was the third-down back and got the looks in the passing game. Maybe they don't yet trust Mitchell in pass protection.
  • Why did the Niners bother to draft Brandon Aiyuk in the first round (and Trey Sermon in the third) if they didn't plan on using them?
  • Deebo Samuel (11-7-100-1) is the only game in town.
  • Jonathan Taylor (18-107-1, 3-3-3) saw more carries this week and scored a TD, but Carson Wentz took a TD in himself, and Nyheim Hines/Marlon Mack combined for 12 carries.
  • Carson Wentz (aside from an inexcusable shovel-pass pick deep in the red zone) played pretty well and scrambled effectively. Missing from his stat sheet are several deep PI penalties.
  • Speaking of which Michael Pittman (4-4-105-1) had a massive game when you include the PI he drew.
  • Allen Robinson never knew how good he had it with Blake Bortles and Mitchell Trubisky.
  • Not only did Gigachad Dave Gettleman take Saquon Barkley over Sam Darnold (more on that below) and Daniel Jones over Dwayne Haskins, he also dealt the Justin Fields pick for Kadarius Toney, a first, a fourth and a fifth.
  • Khalil Herbert (18-100-0, 5-5-33-0) had a massive game relative to the opponent, i.e., the league's best rushing defense. He's already surpassed Damien Williams, but it'll be interesting to see what happens when David Montgomery comes back.
  • Leonard Fournette (15-81-1, 4-2-9-0) is a top-10-ish back.
  • Tom Brady has 21 TD passes, a 51-TD pace.
  • Kyler Murray seemed to want to get Zach Ertz (5-3-66-1) going, and targeted him in the red zone a couple times before his 47-yard TD. DeAndre Hopkins saw nine targets, but A.J. Green (3-3-66-0) (again!) and Ertz led the team in receiving yards.
  • The Texans offense is unusable.
  • The Rams-Lions was a tough watch in part because the announcers (Mark Sanchez and some other NLM) spent the entire game sucking up to Matthew Stafford like he were Kim Jong-un, and we were in North Korea. Meanwhile, the Rams were losing for much of the game, and I had them in Survivor. It would have been grating even under normal circumstances, but had our entry not been a Team of Destiny, I would have defenestrated.
  • D'Andre Swift (13-48-0, 10-8-96-1) will be a top-10 back if he stays healthy. He's good, and the Lions have no one else to throw it to except T.J. Hockenson (9-6-48), and teams will scheme to stop him.
  • Fifteen-point underdog Dan Campbell tried an onside kick and two fake punts, all of which were successful, but refused to go on 4th-and-3 (FG) and on 4th-and-2 (punt) once the Lions had a lead.
  • Cooper Kupp (13-10-156-2) is a monster. He's faster than his timed speed (4.62 40), has slot-WR quickness and catches everything thrown his way. He's on pace for 185-128-1,849-21. Only Davante Adams is ahead of him on my board, and even that's a coin flip.
  • The gap between Jalen Hurts in fantasy and real life is cavernous. Amazing the Eagles were even in position late for a long-shot backdoor push.
  • If Miles Sanders misses time, Kenneth Gainwell (5-20-0, 8-4-41-1) should get more work, but it might be just as frustrating with Boston Scott (7-24-1, 2-1-5-0) around.
  • After seeing Darren Waller get 19 targets in Week 1, I was aghast I had no shares of him. Since then, he hasn't eclipsed 70 yards in a game, scored only one TD and missed Week 7.
  • Ja'Marr Chase (10-8-201-1) is averaging a preposterous 14.8 YPT through seven games. That unsustainable mark would be the highest of all time by a mile. He's on pace for 1,721 yards and 14 TD on only 117 targets.
  • Among QBs with 150 attempts, Joe Burrow leads the NFL with 9.2 YPA. Only Russell Wilson (125 attempts, 9.6 YPA) has a higher mark.
  • Sam Darnold (my favorite player) was benched after putting up 4.4 YPA, throwing a pick and being off-target on some throws. To those who ripped Gettleman for taking Saquon Barkley over Darnold (the consensus pick at the time) and haven't come forth to receive your personalized L, rest assured it has been assigned to a process server who is looking to serve it to you.
  • F around with Graham Gano as the Panthers did when they mismanaged his injury in 2019, and find out. Gano was 3-for-3 on field goals Sunday, including a 53-yarder, and has been the best kicker in the NFL not named Justin Tucker since joining the Giants.
  • Could it be more obvious Daniel Jones is better than Darnold?
  • I made the Dolphins my best bet on Wednesday, but it was obvious later in the week I should have gone with the Patriots. (At least we used them in the SuperContest.)
  • Bill Belichick's teams always get stronger as the year goes on, and I'd expect that to be the case even more with a rookie QB, who is incidentally far and away the best in the class so far, albeit that's a low bar to clear.
  • Zach Wilson is due to miss time with a knee injury, so it looks like Mike White is the guy. Might as well be this Mike White.
  • Kyle Pitts (8-7-163-0) is the TE2 right now, and that's only assuming the Chiefs get it together.
  • What a beautiful job by the Dolphins securing the cover.
  • Mike Gesicki is a top-five TE. The Dolphins target him a ton, and he makes plays every game. I'd take him over Hockenson right now.
  • I didn't watch much of Chiefs-Titans, but the Super Bowl hangover is real. It's amazing the Chiefs scored only three points. It's also amazing the Titans won by 24, and Derrick Henry had only 86 rushing yards.
  • A.J. Brown (9-8-133-1) won't get the Chiefs every week, but when healthy he's a top-five WR. I'd like to see him log a full week of practice first, though.
  • I took the Team plus 9.5, and they were knocking on the door all day, but couldn't get it done. One could say they were unlucky, but whenever luck comes up, I'll refer to Godwin's fumble.

RotoWire Community
Join Our Subscriber-Only NFL Chat
Chat with our writers and other RotoWire NFL fans for all the pre-game info and in-game banter.
Join The Discussion
Chris Liss
Chris Liss is RotoWire's Managing Editor and Host of RotoWIre Fantasy Sports Today on Sirius XM radio.
Monday Night Observations
Monday Night Observations
Backfield Breakdown: Week 13 Recap & Week 14 Sleepers
Backfield Breakdown: Week 13 Recap & Week 14 Sleepers
Sneaky Waiver Wire Adds- Week 14 (Video)
Sneaky Waiver Wire Adds- Week 14 (Video)
Week 13 Observations
Week 13 Observations
Monday Night Football DFS Breakdown: Bills vs. Patriots
Monday Night Football DFS Breakdown: Bills vs. Patriots
NFL Reactions: Week 13
NFL Reactions: Week 13