FANTASY FOOTBALL IN-SEASON FEATURES

Predictions & Projections
David Dorey
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WEEK 3
2012
*NYG at CAR (THU) *DET at TEN *NE at BAL SF at MIN
*ATL at SD HOU at DEN *NYJ at MIA *STL at CHI
*BUF at CLE *JAC at IND *PHI at ARI TB at DAL
*Updated *CIN at WAS *KC at NO *PIT at OAK *GB at SEA (MON)

Prediction: GB 20, SEA 17 (Line: GB by 3.5)

Players to Watch: Aaron Rodgers, Anthony McCoy

Player Updates: Greg Jennings, Randall Cobb

This is going to be a very interesting game. The Seattle defense has been very effective and better as the game goes on. But their offense has never been much more than Marshawn Lynch. The Packers still have not rekindled the magic of 2011 when they could score on accident. If this game follows the first two weeks, it will be close and not have that many points. This is the Packers first trip away from Green Bay.

Green Bay Packers
Homefield: Lambeau Field
Grass
  Opp Score   Opp Score
1 SF 22-30 10 BYE -----
2 CHI 23-10 11 @DET -----
3 @SEA ----- 12 @NYG -----
4 NO ----- 13 MIN -----
5 @IND ----- 14 DET -----
6 @HOU ----- 15 @CHI -----
7 @STL ----- 16 TEN -----
8 JAC ----- 17 @MIN -----
9 ARI ----- ----- ----- -----
News | Statistics | Roster
GB @ SEA Rush Catch Pass
QB Aaron Rodgers 20,1 290,1
WR Randall Cobb 20 3-40
WR Jordy Nelson 5-70
PK Mason Crosby 2 FG 2 XP

Pregame Notes: The Packers won their matchup with the Bears but so far Aaron Rodgers ranks as the 18th best fantasy quarterback despite being a first round pick in almost every league. Granted he did play the 49ers and Bears but both games came at home and he only managed one touchdown against the Bears. Last year over two games he scored eight times on them. Almost all those top quarterbacks from last year are struggling more. But Rodgers seemed above that happening.

Cedric Benson bounced back against his original team and posted 81 yards on 20 carries and added four catches for 35 yards. That was in direct contrast to facing the 49ers when he only produced 18 yards in the entire game. At least Benson does get all the running back work there is.

Greg Jennings was held out of the Thursday game to rest his groin and make sure he would be 100% the rest of the season. He'll return this week even though he only managed 34 yards on five receptions versus the 49ers. Jordy Nelson has yet to score a touchdown but has been the most solid receiver so far with 11 catches for 148 yards on the year. Then again, he was always a force in all home games last year and never failed to score in Green Bay. This year - two games and not a point. Randall Cobb and James Jones still contribute but fell flat against the Bears when Jennings was out and the team needed them to step up.

Even Jermichael Finley has been off his game with only 11 catches for 73 yards on the season though he scored against the 49ers. The passing game feels like it has been about halved from the prolific games we recall from last year. That's not likely to change much this week on the road for the first time and facing a Seattle defense that has only allowed one passing touchdown per game and just shut down Tony Romo. If the Packers are to resume their role as NFC North bad ass, it better start this week. The Packers defense also needs to rise up in this game against an average offense.

Starting in week four - their fortunes really change with a schedule that should be easy aside from the one trip to Houston. Even a loss here would not doom them but it makes it much harder than it needs to be.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points GB 21 29 6 8 23 3
Preventing Fantasy Points SEA 6 9 14 9 3 10

Seattle Seahawks
Homefield: Qwest Field
FieldTurf
  Opp Score   Opp Score
1 @ARI 16-20 10 NYJ -----
2 DAL 27-7 11 BYE -----
3 GB ----- 12 @MIA -----
4 @STL ----- 13 @CHI -----
5 @CAR ----- 14 ARI -----
6 NE ----- 15 @BUF -----
7 @SF ----- 16 SF -----
8 @DET ----- 17 STL -----
9 MIN ----- ----- ----- -----
News | Statistics | Roster
SEA vs GB Rush Catch Pass
QB Russell Wilson 30 160,1
RB Marshawn Lynch 100,1 1-10
WR Doug Baldwin 2-20
TE Anthony McCoy 3-30,1
TE Zach Miller 2-20
PK Steven Hauschka 1 FG 2 XP

Pregame Notes: The Seahawks beat Dallas thanks to a dominating defense and a solid rushing effort out of Marshawn Lynch. Rookie quarterback Russell Wilson has been effective enough but mostly as a game manager trying to not make any mistakes. His two efforts thus far are virtual bookends of 150 pass yards and one touchdown each. His role as a runner has only provided about 20 or 30 yards per game as well.

Lynch has been the chain mover in this offense with no fewer than 21 carries per game and at least four yards per tote. He rushed for 122 yards and a score on the Cowboys but has been unused as a receiver. With the Seahawks wanting to keep the Packers from the field as much as possible, it is a lock that Lynch gets 20 more carries this week as well.

The lackluster passing stats has left all receivers with no real fantasy value. Last week it was unknown Anthony McCoy scoring once and turning in five catches for 41 yards but he only had 13 catches over his first two seasons in Seattle who has apparently given up on Zach Miller. No wideout or tight end has accounted for more than 43 yards in a game and that does not look to change going against a top five secondary this week.

Whether the Seahawks win or lose, the outcome is not going to be caused by the offense. Seattle's defense will either keep them in the game as they did against the Cowboys or not. In fantasy terms, only Lynch has any real value as a starter besides the team defense aspect.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points SEA 31 19 32 17 14 20
Preventing Fantasy Points GB 5 17 8 7 15 18

  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
QB Russell Wilson, SEA OAK 30000023020 ****
After a little tease of what he's capable off, Wilson has returned to doing just what is necessary for a Seahawks win. So while it's a favorable matchup on paper, Seattle may not need much more than the bare minimum from Wilson--about the only damper on his fantasy potential this week.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB Marshawn Lynch, SEA OAK 10012201000 ****
It's a home game, which usually means 20-plus touches for Lynch and the accompanying fantasy stats that go with. Oakland has allowed RB TDs in four straight, no reason to think Lynch grabs the Skittles before adding to that total here.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Doug Baldwin, SEA OAK 005601000 **
Game Two post-Percy and Baldwin was still the most targeted and most prolific of Seattle's wideouts--only instead of 123 and 1, now it's back to the usual 61 and no TD. Oakland's allowed five WR TDs in the past four games so maybe Baldwin gets one here, but the passing game hasn't been a Seattle priority for quite some time.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Paul Richardson, SEA OAK 002200000 ***
Four guys caught balls in the battle to be Doug Baldwin's main wingman. Richardson has perhaps the most upside, but in a run-heavy offense with so many mouths to feed he's still more of a fantasy risk than you should need to take.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
TE Luke Willson, SEA OAK 002200000 ****
Gronk and Gates have scored on Oakland, but aside from that they haven't surrendered much to the position--certainly not so much that Willson and his one or two catches a week look like a significant fantasy helper.
  Opp fgaFGMxpaXPM ConFac
K Steven Hauschka, SEA OAK 2233 ****
Hauschka's baseline is in the 6-7 point range, which is the minimum the Raiders have allowed and a mark he's bested in all but one outing this season. And things go up from there.

WEEK 3
2012
*NYG at CAR (THU) *DET at TEN *NE at BAL SF at MIN
*ATL at SD HOU at DEN *NYJ at MIA *STL at CHI
*BUF at CLE *JAC at IND *PHI at ARI TB at DAL
*Updated *CIN at WAS *KC at NO *PIT at OAK *GB at SEA (MON)

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