During the NFL regular season the TSN 4-Downs ‘Hail Mary Starts of the Week’ will be based around off the radar players with upside in their weekend matchup. The player must be owned in less than 50 per cent of ESPN fantasy leagues, making them more likely to be available on your league’s waiver wire.

Only two teams are on the bye this week, but there is going to be some serious star power missing without the Panthers and Cowboys active.

Carolina - Cam Newton, Kelvin Benjamin, Jonathan Stewart, Greg Olsen

Dallas - Dak Prescott, Ezekiel Elliott, Jason Witten, Cole Beasley

The below ‘Hail Mary’ options can help guide you through the turbulent waters of struggling or absent running backs and wide receivers in Week 7.


Running Back: Jacquizz Rodgers - Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Jacquizz Rodgers turned head two weeks ago, shredding Carolina’s defense on the ground and through the air. His 101 rushing yards and five receptions demonstrated dual threat ability, however, that was without Doug Martin in the Bucs lineup.

Coming out of the bye, Martin is set to return from a hamstring injury, but did not practice Monday. This is good news for those hunting for a RB2/flex option since it is highly doubtful that Martin gets a full workload Sunday as he eases his way back.

Tampa Bay’s usual third down back, Charles Sims, is on injured reserve and that leaves Rodgers without true competition for those extra touches.

The Buccaneers match-up makes the six-year veteran even more appealing. San Francisco’s hapless run defense has given up the sixth most fantasy points to running backs this season and allowed 300-yards on the ground to Buffalo last weekend.

Rodgers is widely available at only 23 per cent ownership in TSN/ESPN leagues and looks like a smart pickup in PPR or daily fantasy formats.


Wide Receiver: Chester Rogers - Indianapolis Colts

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The Colts receiving corps has turned into the walking wounded this season. It seems that each week another weapon falls away from Andrew Luck’s arsenal. As we know in fantasy football, an injury can open an opportunity on the waiver wire for savvy owners.

This is where the virtually unknown Chester Rogers enters the scene. As of Wednesday, the undrafted rookie was sitting and waiting to be loved in 100 per cent of TSN/ESPN leagues.

Rogers hit double digit points versus Houston in Week 6, catching all four of his targets and is averaging 14 yards per reception in 2016.

The Grambling State alum’s current value is based solely on Luck’s limited options in the passing game. Donte Moncrief remains out, while Dwayne Allen and Phillip Dorsett are questionable to suit up.

Indianapolis battles the Titans who have allowed the ninth most yards-per-game to wide receivers and that bodes well for the speedy 6’1’’ WR.

Colts backup tight end Jack Doyle was another ‘Hail Mary’ possibility that I was considering. However, I ultimately went with Rogers because Tennessee has been tough on tight ends, giving up the 11th fewest fantasy points in the NFL.

Good luck!

Listen to "TSN 4-Downs" on TSN 1050 and TSN 1150 every Saturday at 11am ET with host Andy McNamara. Tweet Andy your fantasy football questions @TSN4Downs and @AndyMc81. Email: andy.mcnamara@bellmedia.ca