Three running backs highlight our early look at the Week 7 waiver wire. One was triumphant in his return from a hamstring injury on Sunday, one is a veteran who continues to defy father time, and one is set to return next week, not a moment too soon for his team. As always, all players have ownership rates of 40% or less on at least two of Yahoo, ESPN and CBS.
Marlon Mack, RB, Colts
Mack returned in Week 6 for his first game in a month, and second game of the season, after spending the majority of the early going on the sidelines because of a hamstring injury. He instantly gave the Indianapolis run game a shot of life, racking up 89 yards on 12 carries in the 42-32 loss to the Jets. Nyheim Hines ran it just three times for 14 yards, while Jordan Wilkins didn’t get a touch, despite being active. It’s safe to say that Mack is back atop the depth chart in Indianapolis, a likelihood that too many fantasy owners have ignored in recent weeks. There’s no way Mack should have been available in more than 70% of leagues across the main sites, but that was his reality heading into Week 6. It’s safe to say that won’t be the case going into Week 7. All things being equal, Mack should be your top priority on the waiver wire this week.
Frank Gore, RB, Dolphins
Gore once again led the Miami backfield, and looked great doing it, running for 101 yards on 15 carries in the team’s 31-28 overtime win over Chicago. Additionally, Kenyan Drake lost what was nearly a back-breaking fumble, coughing it up on the 1-yard line in overtime, where a touchdown would’ve won the game for the Dolphins and precluded the need for a last-second field goal by Jason Sanders. Other than the fumble, Drake actually did well with his workload, turning 17 touches into 78 yards from scrimmage, but his performance once again paled in comparison to Gore’s. The veteran may not be a true workhorse, but he’s clearly at the head of Miami’s backfield committee, and has proved himself capable of translating that role into meaningful fantasy production. It’s a fact the fantasy community can no longer ignore.
D’Onta Foreman, RB, Texans
Houston’s backs in Week 6 failed to live up to their end of the bargain—again—and that nearly cost the team in a hard-fought 20-13 win over the Bills. Lamar Miller ran for 46 yards on 15 carries while Alfred Blue picked up 26 yards on seven totes. They combined for 42 receiving yards on six targets, which isn’t terrible from an efficiency standpoint, but doesn’t really move the needle on the bottom line, for either the Texans or their fantasy owners. We’ve been discussing Foreman’s impending return for weeks, which is still on schedule to occur in Week 7 when the Texans visit the Jaguars. Foreman may not be usable in that game, but it’s a certainty that he’s going to get his chance to bring some much-needed production to a rushing attack that has been listless this season. Miller has fallen short of expectations for the third straight season in Houston, totaling 271 yards on 73 carries while still searching for his first touchdown on the ground. Blue, meanwhile, is nothing more than a backup. Foreman is capable of leading a backfield, something he was starting to do last season before rupturing his Achilles in November. In his last game before suffering the injury, he ran for 65 yards and two touchdowns on 10 carries. It may not be until Week 8 or 9 that Foreman provides returns, which makes him a better target for fantasy teams near the top of the standings, but he could be a second-half star.