Fantasy Football: Get Past Injuries With These Week 7 Waiver Wire Adds

by Chalk
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More injuries at the running back position open up more opportunities for backups. It also highlights new candidates to scoop off the fantasy football waiver wire. Hopefully, you have been following along over the past few weeks as the dividends from the wire continue to pile up.

Here are the players you should be considering during your weekly waiver wire run in fantasy football based on at least 60% availability. I also include adds for those in deeper league formats. If you have any questions or need any fantasy football waiver wire advice, feel free to hit me on Twitter @101chalk. You can also check out my Waiver Wire Rankings.

Running Back

D’Ernest Johnson – Cleveland Browns

99% availability on ESPN
98% availability on Yahoo

The Browns were already missing Nick Chubb and now face uncertainty around Kareem Hunt’s status for Week 7. Cleveland plays on Thursday, making it a quick turnaround for a banged up cast that also includes Baker Mayfield who dislocated his shoulder.

Hunt suffered a calf injury of his own and now special teamer and backup running back D’Ernest Johnson gets another shot at fantasy glory.  Almost exactly a year ago, Johnson posted 95 yards on 13 carries. I would temper expectations of Johnson this time around since the Browns are also missing two stud offensive linemen. The offense will not be as efficient without Mayfield under center.

Like Patterson, D’Ernest Johnson has more appeal in standard leagues since he does not possess much pass-catching upside. If you’re in a PPR fantasy football league and desperate for a spot RB/flex start, consider Demetric Felton.

Devonta Freeman – Baltimore Ravens

98% availability on ESPN
98% availability on Yahoo

Freeman was on fantasy football radars for the past several weeks but now he is nearing must-add status. Baltimore has been running a Frankenstein running back by committee since Gus Edwards and JK Dobbins were lost to season-ending injuries.

Ty’Son Williams had the first opportunity at the starting job but has found his way out of the rotation. The Ravens now lean on veteran runners who grind the rock. Devonta Freeman is far from his glory days as a punishing runner in Atlanta, but he still has that fire as we saw on his touchdown run on Sunday. After leading the team with 8 carries for 53 yards, Freeman is the priority running back add out of Baltimore. It’s worth noting that the Ravens have a bye in Week 8 so Freeman may only see immediate value for a week.

Chris Evans – Cincinnati Bengals

98% availability on ESPN
96% availability on Yahoo

Evans finally had a chance to break out with Bengals backup running back Samaje Perine missing Sunday’s action. During the offseason, the camp hype around Evans was real. The Cincinnati coaching staff gushed about Evans’ soft hands and great pass-catching skills.

On his first touch of the game, Evans took a pass 24 yards for a touchdown. The rookie ended up with 18 rushing yards,49 receiving yards, and a touchdown. This is the exact type of muted fantasy football breakout we hoped to see from Evans given he’s behind an elite bellcow in Joe Mixon.

The former Michigan Wolverine likely isn’t worth an add in your standard-sized leagues but he does have PPR appeal. After a strong performance this past Sunday, we need to monitor how the Bengals handle this shifty playmaker.

Jarett Patteson – Washington Football Team

99% availability on ESPN
99% availability on Yahoo

Patterson is a priority add if Antonio Gibson misses time due to a shin injury. However, we likely won’t know until waivers have cleared. Even if Gibson misses time, McKissic will be the major beneficiary with Patterson likely mixing in as a change of pace back. However, others believe he will soak up first and second down.

Ron Rivera has previously stated that he doesn’t see McKissic as purely a third down back so it will be interesting to see how the work is split. The small but solid framed bowling ball is more appealing in standard fantasy football leagues.

Le’Veon Bell – Baltimore Ravens

99% availability on ESPN
93% availability on Yahoo

Bell is at at best second in the rotation (if Latavius Murray sits in Week 7), but he’s still worth a look. Although he was inefficient on his eight carries (18 yards), Bell did score at the goal line which is a reminder that any Baltimore running back getting touches is worth consideration. I wouldn’t spend any FAB on Bell this week, but put him on your watch list and consider him a desperation play.

Wide Receiver

Rashod Bateman – Baltimore Ravens

86% availability on ESPN
62% availability on Yahoo

The expectations for rookie wide receiver Rashod Bateman were tempered for his first action of this NFL career. However, it would be a lie if there wasn’t some hope for an explosive breakout. While we didn’t see fireworks in his debut, Bateman didn’t disappoint either.

Bateman posted four receptions and 29 yards on six targets. This indicates that the rookie is already active and making an immediate impact on the team’s offense. The rookie wide receiver tied with Mark Andrews with 22.2% of the team’s target share.

For comparison, Marquise Brown had 18.5% of the team’s targets in Week 6. With Sammy Watkins nursing a hamstring injury, Bateman can slide into the WR2 role for the Ravens and continue to eat into Brown’s opportunities.

TY Hilton – Indianapolis Colts

77% availability on ESPN
61% availability on Yahoo

TY Hilton returned from his latest IR stint to post four receptions for 80 yards, only to suffer a quad injury late in the game. It couldn’t be a more frustrating situation for the veteran as he’s battled numerous injuries throughout his career. If he’s available for Week 7, then Hilton is worth a flex play given his demonstrated chemistry with Wentz.

Hilton is a field stretcher and Wentz has the arm. This was seen with the the 52-yard reception in the second quarter of Sunday’s game against the Texans. Hilton was available for post-game interviews which is a good sign that his injury was not serious.

Parris Campbell is a pivot in the event that Hilton gets shelved again and is available in about 90% of ESPN and Yahoo fantasy football leagues. Campbell also suffered a serious foot injury and will likely miss the rest of the season. Hilton, if healthy, can make a difference down the stretch.

Donovan Peoples-Jones – Cleveland Browns

99% availability on ESPN
98% availability on Yahoo

Many expected Peoples-Jones to be the Browns’ third wide receiver this season after a great training camp but he’s fallen to the wayside until Week 6. Breaking loose for 101 yards and two scores, Peoples-Jones has made a case for more playing time in Cleveland.

A tough matchup against the Broncos awaits so don’t panic if you don’t see a repeat performance in Week 7. However, the sophomore has the potential to be a fantasy football PPR flex play throughout the rest of the season.

Jamal Agnew – Jacksonville Jaguars

99% availability on ESPN
99% availability on Yahoo

This is a super deep play but Jamal Agnew has been garnering my attention for the past few weeks. Laviska Shenault was the offseason darling and the hype was unreal around the sophomore wide receiver. However, Agnew has been the one through six weeks to show off his versatility all over the field.

Not only does Agnew play wide receiver, he is the Jaguars’ main kick returner, and even plays downs as a defensive back. It’s now two weeks in a row that Jamal Agnew has scored more fantasy points than Shenault. After a five reception, 78-yard performance, Agnew is now on the radar.

Tight End

Ricky Seals Jones – Washington Football Team

80% availability on ESPN
71% availability on Yahoo

Seals-Jones is probably beyond the point of being a post-hype sleeper. However, it is great to see him come alive in 2021. Seals-Jones caught four of his six targets for 58 yards and a touchdown, filling in for injured tight end Logan Thomas. The backup tight end has now drawn six or more targets over the past two weeks. With a juicy matchup against the Packers on tap for Week 7, RSJ will be a popular add off the wire this week.

For more fantasy football advice, make sure to check out The Undroppables.

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