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Fancy fantasy football: Josh Freeman, 5 other bye fill-ins for Week 7

By Nicholas Minnix

On Wednesday, I summed up the problems facing fantasy owners in Week 7: A bunch of very good players are off that week; some pretty good backups are maxin' and relaxin', too.

You might find that a couple of these players aren't available in your leagues. But a few names here are almost certainly free. And at a critical time, any of them could supplement your score with unexpectedly obliging contributions. If you can stash one now, you'll avoid trading elbows later.


Arizona Cardinals RB LaRod Stephens-Howling
Do dat dance, LSH - in Week 7

Josh Freeman vs. New Orleans Saints

This is the perfect recipe for Freeman use: (1) The Saints have a bad pass defense. (2) So do the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, which is bad for them, because (3) The Saints put up a lot of points through the air. The Bucs could try to get the running game going, but they may not keep up if so.

Matt Hasselbeck at Buffalo Bills

Buffalo's upgrades on D haven't improved the unit's ability to slow down aerial charges. If Jake Locker is still in street clothes, Hass could put up big points for the Tennessee Titans in this matchup. A healthy Kenny Britt wouldn't hurt.


Joique Bell vs. Chicago Bears

Owners in PPR leagues note: If Jahvid Best is still on the Detroit Lions' PUP list (and maybe even if he's not), the bruising Bell should be a frequent check-down option for Matthew Stafford. Mikel Leshoure will have tough sledding vs. Chi-town, but running backs have tallied 5.5 catches and 41.8 yards per against that D.

LaRod Stephens-Howling at Minnesota Vikings

The Arizona Cardinals won't be able to run against the Vikes. And whoever their QB is by this one could be running for his life. Unless ... yes, Minnesota is susceptible to screen passes - and has been for years. RBs have averaged 5.25 receptions and 45 yards, with a TD, against them. LSH excels in pass protection and the screen game. Perfect for PPR playas.


Devery Henderson at Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Covered this earlier, so let's go over the numbers: The Bucs have surrendered 16.75 catches, 261.5 yards and 0.75 TDs per game to receivers. Tampa Bay has been pretty stout against the run, too, but what does it matter if New Orleans doesn't run the rock very often? Henderson shows up occasionally.

Mohamed Massaquoi at Indianapolis Colts

Let's presume that Massaquoi will be pretty close to past his hamstring booboo by Week 7. Unlike the Cleveland Browns' other wideouts, he doesn't make loads of mistakes. There's a reason he was Brandon Weeden's favorite target before his injury. Indy's pass defense is - yep - still pretty bad.


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