Six teams are on a bye in Week 7, which is the most of any week of the 2012 NFL regular season. Untold damage will be done to fantasy lineups, with plenty of solid players sitting among the Atlanta Falcons, Denver Broncos, Kansas City Chiefs, Miami Dolphins, Philadelphia Eagles and San Diego Chargers. Expect a lot of action on waivers this week, particularly at quarterback.
Owners of Matt Ryan, Peyton Manning, Michael Vick and Philip Rivers (and to a much lesser extent, Ryan Tannehill and Brady Quinn) may need to turn to waivers for a starter this week. Luckily, there are still a few quality options available. Like last week, the following six QBs, ranked from worst to first, are owned in less than 60 percent of Yahoo! fantasy football leagues this week:
6. Brandon Weeden -- Own percent: 12 percent. Through six games: 129-for-231 passing, 1,519 yards, 7 TDs, 10 INTs
Nothing Brandon Weeden has done as a rookie suggests he is going to be a very good weekly fantasy option any time soon. Against a bad Indianapolis Colts secondary this week, however, he could prove to be a valuable stop-gap for a fantasy team in need. The Colts are one of 11 teams that have given up 10 or more passing touchdowns this season. Even better, they have intercepted just two passes. While this is probably a better matchup for running back Trent Richardson, Weeden just needs to find the end zone a couple times to help owners. He has thrown two touchdowns in each of has last two games going up against much better defenses.
5. Christian Ponder -- Own percent: 40 percent. Through six games: 144-for-210 passing, 1,434 yards, 8 TDs, 4 INTs
While it is somewhat concerning that Christian Ponder has thrown all four of his interceptions on the season in the last two weeks, he managed to counter the mistakes with four touchdown passes. The Arizona Cardinals have an excellent pass defense, having given up just five passing touchdowns on the season while picking off six passes, but I have faith in Ponder as a quarterback to put up decent numbers. He threw the ball 87 times over the last two weeks, and has the potential to put up big numbers if the Vikings let him air it out again.
4. Carson Palmer -- Own percent: 43 percent. Through five games: 122-for-195 passing, 1,434 yards, 6 TDs, 3 INTs
Carson Palmer has been hit or miss this season, but with a good matchup and a penchant for the deep ball he should be effective if you're desperate. The Jacksonville Jaguars are allowing 261 yards passing per game, and have given up six passing touchdowns while intercepting just three passes. A run defense giving up 4.7 yards per carry could force the Oakland Raiders into run-first mode, but expect Palmer to take his chances throwing into the end zone near the goal line.
3. Josh Freeman -- Own percent: 40 percent. Through five games: 80-for-145 passing, 1,118 yards, 8 TDs, 5 INTs
You can't always trust a hot hand in fantasy football, but Freeman is coming off a 328-yard, three-touchdown performance against the Chiefs in Week 6. The Tampa Bay Buccaneers are hosting the New Orleans Saints in Week 7, giving Freeman the best kind of matchup for a fantasy quarterback. The Bucs will have to throw often to keep pace with Drew Brees and Co., which is good because the Saints are giving up 283 yards passing per game this season and have allowed nine passing touchdowns to just three interceptions.
2. Matt Hasselbeck -- Own percent: 6 percent. Through three games: 74-for-123 passing, 726 yards, 4 TDs, 4 INTs
Matt Hasselbeck will be starting for the Tennessee Titans while Jake Locker sits with a shoulder injury. The veteran has been competent in his three games under center, facing three tough defenses in the Houston Texans, Minnesota Vikings and Pittsburgh Steelers. The Buffalo Bills will be a major reprieve in Week 7, setting Hasselbeck up for a potentially big fantasy day. The Bills have given up 13 passing touchdowns this season, tied for second-most in the league, and have picked off just six passes.
1. Ryan Fitzpatrick -- Own percent: 53%. Through six games: 106-for-183 passing, 1,210 yards, 12 TDs, 8 INTs
Fitzpatrick may be dropped in a lot of leagues this week after a second straight game without a passing touchdown. How quickly we forget that he was leading the league in passing touchdowns after four weeks. He still ranks No. 4 in the league despite the double bagel, and should get back on track against the Titans this week. The Titans are last in the NFL, giving up a 107.9 rating to opposing quarterbacks. They have also given up 13 touchdowns through the air this season, countering with just four interceptions.