This week, Mauk should have a healthy set of receivers as Darius White and Jimmie Hunt return from injury and the Tigers are catching a Bulldogs team that lost their Heisman hopeful, running back Todd Gurley, to an indefinite suspension.
Justin Thomas, QB and Zach Laskey, RB-Georgia Tech vs Duke
Miami was the first quality opponent that the Blue Devils have played this season and the Hurricanes outgained them easily 426-264. Duke figures to stay in the bottom one-third of the FBS in rushing yards allowed (186.4 rypg) when they travel to Atlanta to face a ranked and undefeated Yellow Jackets team.
Mark Weisman, RB-Iowa vs Indiana
The senior running back has seen his carries increase over the past couple of weeks and he could be in line for another busy day when the Hawkeyes host Indiana this Saturday. Weisman has scored a touchdown in four of five games this season and has six of Iowa’s eight rushing touchdowns.
Mario Pender, RB-Florida State at Syracuse
Pender’s weekly value is at a season-high now that Karlos Williams is unlikely to suit up this weekend due to an ankle injury. The Syracuse rush defense is giving up a respectable 130 yards per game, but assuming the lead-role in the Seminoles’ backfield makes Pender an attractive Week 7 start.
Nick Chubb, RB-Georgia at Missouri
Missouri’s defense hasn’t exactly shut opposing running backs down this season and Chubb should be in line for 20-plus carries due to the absence of Todd Gurley (suspension), Keith Marshall (ankle), and Sony Michel (shoulder).
Marteze Waller, Fresno State at UNLV
Waller has carried the ball at least 15 times in five of Fresno State’s six games this season. Against the nation’s second-worst run defense, fifteen carries and 100 yards looks like a given this Friday night for the junior running back.
A.J. Ouellette, RB-Ohio vs Bowling Green
The freshman running back is reportedly recovered from an ankle injury and no team has given up more rushing touchdowns in the FBS than Bowling Green (21).
Matt Jones, RB-Florida vs LSU
Much like LSU, the Gators have woes at quarterback, but that could be a good thing for Jones’ fantasy owners. The Tigers are allowing over 184 yards on the ground, which ranks them in the bottom one-third of the FBS.
Connor Halliday, QB-Washington State at Stanford
We went back and forth with this one, but if you play in a full FBS, 1-QB league, Halliday should sit this one out. The nation’s No. 1 rated passing offense visits the No. 2 rated passing defense. Not only will Stanford shorten the game, but if the Cougars cannot dictate tempo or the pace at which this game will be played, fantasy owners could regret starting Halliday. However, we feel that 300 yards and 2 passing TDs is attainable, and if you can live with those numbers (20 fantasy points excluding INTs) in a Power 5 or 2-QB format, roll the dice.
Andrew Hendrix, Miami (OH) at Akron
The Akron defense has held opponents to ten or fewer points three times this year and are ranked 15th in the FBS in points allowed per game (17.0ppg).
Marquise Williams, QB-North Carolina at Notre Dame
A struggling North Carolina team could be catching Notre Dame at the perfect time. The Irish are coming off a dramatic win at home against Stanford and travel to Tallahassee next week for their showdown with Florida State. Could this be a classic letdown game? We’re not taking our chances against a stingy Notre Dame defense and their 12.0 ppg average, which is tied for third-best in the FBS.
Devin Gardner, QB-Michigan v Penn State
If you play in a Power 5 league and need to start Gardner this week, you are already in desperation-mode. The thought of Gardner posing a threat on the ground is hopeful at best, as the Nittany Lions have the nation’s second-best run defense. Should Gardner get things going through the air, finding the end zone may prove challenging, too, because Penn State is only allowing 14.6 points per game.
Akeem Hunt, RB-Purdue vs Michigan State
Hunt has been picking up steam as of late, totaling 99, 117, and 199 yards in the past three games. However, this week the Boilermakers host Michigan State, who are coming off a Week 6 win over Nebraska, a game in which they held Ameer Abdullah to 45 yards on 24 carries.
Alex Collins, RB-Arkansas and Jonathan Williams, RB-Arkansas vs Alabama
Collins and Williams have been impactful this season from a fantasy perspective, but neither player has topped the 80-yard mark when the Razorbacks have played defenses ranked in the top 20 against the run (Auburn No. 13, Northern Illinois No. 19). Not only does Alabama have the third-best defense against the run, but they have only allowed one rushing touchdown and 20 rushing first-downs in 2014, both tops in the FBS.
De’Veon Smith, RB-Michigan vs Penn State
Smith became a waiver wire commodity after news broke that Derrick Green would miss the remainder of the season due to an injury. Smith has value moving forward, but a game against Penn State’s No.2 rated run defense presents a problem this weekend.
Travin Dural, WR-LSU at Florida
The inconsistent play at quarterback for LSU is a tremendous blow to Dural’s fantasy potential. Expect the Tigers to lean on their running game and put the ball in the hands of their backs 40-50 times at Florida.
Deontay Greenberry, WR-Houston vs Memphis
Seventeen of Greenberry’s twenty-one receptions this year came in Houston’s first three games of the season. Since then, the junior receiver has four catches for 43 yards and the Cougars seem unsettled at quarterback. To make matters worse for Greenberry’s fantasy owners, Memphis comes to town with a top 25 defense.