Fantasy Football Week 7 Rankings: Players To Start Based On Advanced Stats

James Conner has seen the second-most touches in the red area over the past three games

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It’s about time to set your fantasy football lineup for Week 7 of the 2021 NFL campaign, and we’ve uncovered some advanced statistics that may help you while making some tough decisions.

We examined advanced fantasy football stats from SportRadar and made the case for four players who could be in line for a big week. Of note, all stats included full-point PPR fantasy football leagues.

James Conner, RB, Arizona Cardinals
Conner has a great matchup while going up against the Houston Texans, who have allowed the seventh-most points to running backs. Conner is a valuable fantasy option in large part because of the fact he has taken over the goal-line duties for the Cardinals, as best depicted by his five rushing touchdowns, which are tied for second in the NFL behind only Derrick Henry. Conner has received the second-most goal-line carries since Week 3 behind only Ezekiel Elliot. He’s been RB19 during that stretch, considerably higher than fellow Cardinals running back Chase Edmonds at RB32, who has seen five fewer touches on the season.

Mike Davis, RB, Atlanta Falcons
Cordarrelle Patterson has become the shiny new toy in Atlanta, and for good reason, but Davis’ stock shouldn’t completely plummet because of it. Davis is RB32 during the last three weeks when it comes to total touches with Patterson just behind at RB33 — essentially a dead split despite the fact Patterson is used more as a pass-catcher, as well. And with their upcoming game against the Dolphins, who allow the fourth-most fantasy points to running backs, it feels like a game both are worthy of starting. Davis averages about half the points per touch that Patterson does (0.73), but has been used on goal-line carries more than Patterson with 57% of his rushing yards coming after contact.

Sam Darnold, QB, Carolina Panthers
Darnold is a strong option off the waiver wire if you’re a fantasy owner who has their starting quarterback on a bye week, or just simply looking for more production at the position. The first-year Panther is ranked QB11 in total scoring this season and now gets a Week 7 matchup against the New York Giants, who have allowed the fifth-most points to quarterbacks. Darnold has proven the ability to push the ball down field with 33 explosive passes (16 yards or more), which ranks just behind Kirk Cousins, Kyler Murray and Dak Prescott, to name a few. And his fantasy impact has greatly increased with his rushing ability in the red area, as he leads all quarterbacks with five rushing touchdowns.

Randall Cobb, WR, Green Bay Packers
Cobb hasn’t seen a massive sample size this season with Aaron Rodgers looking for Davante Adams, who is second in the league in targets, but the veteran wideout has been largely productive when he is thrown to. Cobb is WR11 this season in regards to points per target (2.76 points) and he jumps to WR3 when considering receivers with 10 or more targets. Cobb now will go up against a Washington Football Team defense that allows the second-most points to receivers. He was WR6 in total scoring back in Week 4, when he saw a season-high six targets, and this could be a matchup which allows him to have a similar output.

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