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What to do with Derrick Henry in Week 7 fantasy football

Derrick Henry faces a Chargers team that has conceded 291 rushing yards combined in its last two games. We take a look at Henry’s fantasy value entering Week 7.

Derrick Henry of the Tennessee Titans runs with the ball during the first half against the Buffalo Bills at Nissan Stadium on October 6, 2019 in Nashville, Tennessee. Photo by Brett Carlsen/Getty Images

Derrick Henry started the season on fire but has been cooling weekly. While perhaps not an elite-level rusher, or an overall RB1 among all running backs, Henry showed what he’s capable of in Week 1: he rushed for 84 yards on 19 carries scoring a touchdown, and had a massive reception for 75 yards and a touchdown —all after getting a check pass from Mariota he carried all the way to the end zone. That performance alone netted him 28.9 fantasy points. From that week on, though, he’s gone from 29 to 17, to 12, to 12 again, up to 14 and finally in Week 6 against an average Broncos defense he finished with a rather mediocre 4.3 points. Something must change for Henry to actually be considered one of the best rushers in the league.

The Titans overall performance as a team isn’t helping Henry. Last weekend they were held to no points by Denver. They needed to throw to try and catch up, but not even that helped Tennessee, let alone Henry. The rusher finished the day with just 28 yards on a bulky 15 carries that amounted to nothing. Derrick Henry is not a do-it-all running back. He’s a pure rusher, full stop. So if the running game is not going his way then his ceiling doesn’t get much higher than 12 points—and that’s if he gets to the end zone and somehow saves the day.

Fantasy football analysis, Tennessee Titans RB Derrick Henry

The situation has changed in Tennessee. The Titans have finally moved from Marcus Mariota and will be starting Ryan Tannehill at the quarterback position. Again, Henry is not a receiving running back used often in the passing game, so the change will probably not have an overly great impact on his game. The better news for Henry, though, is the matchup he’s facing this weekend. Tennessee goes against a Chargers team that allowed Denver and Pittsburgh to run all over them in the past two weeks to the tune of 175 and 116 yards respectively (both teams’ backfields scored one touchdown on the ground, with the Steelers’ hanging another one on LA through the air). Were I to bet, and knowing what other high-level rushers such as Phillip Lindsay and James Conner have done to Los Angeles lately, I’d put my money on Henry this weekend and expect a great bounce-back game from him.

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