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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
RB Kahlil Bell 20 2-10
WR Randall Cobb 20 3-40
WR Jordy Nelson 5-70
TE Jermichael Finley 6-50
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

  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
QB Aaron Rodgers, GB @CHI 10000027031 ***
The last time we saw Rodgers he was being thrown to the Lambeau turf by the Bears; that was two months ago. Maybe he returns in time for this do-or-die NFC North battle, but there would be a lot of rust to shake off.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB Eddie Lacy, GB @CHI 12012100000 **
Two months ago Lacy rushed for 150 yards and a score against the Bears, kicking off a stretch in which the Bears have allowed eight 100-yard rushers in eight games--along with 10 RB rushing scores in that span. Assuming he's healthy enough to play, he's money this week.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB James Starks, GB @CHI 300000000 ****
If Eddie Lacy can't go this week Starks is a great fallback plan. He had 40 yards and a touchdown on limited carries in the earlier meeting with Chicago, averaged 4.7 yards per carry in relief of Lacy last week, and is poised to push the Packers into the postseason if Lacy is out.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Jordy Nelson, GB @CHI 0071001000 ****
Giving up so much on the ground cuts into receiver production against Chicago; they haven't allowed a 100-yard receiver since Week 3. They have, however, served up five WR TDs in the past four games. Nelson would be a fantasy stud once again if Aaron Rodgers plays; if it's Matt Flynn, he's a nice play with upside but nowhere near a must-start.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Jarrett Boykin, GB @CHI 003501000 **
With the return of Aaron Rodgers the entire Green Bay passing game gets a lift--especially secondary targets like Boykin. Of course, that lift will take a hit if Randall Cobb gets healthy and takes snaps away from Boykin.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
TE Andrew Quarless, GB @CHI 003200000 ***
Quarless has had a couple decent games in the past month, and while the Bears have only allowed five TE TDs on the year no team has given up more yardage to the position. Still, much of Quarless' fantasy value depends on whether or not it's Aaron Rodgers at the helm.
  Opp fgaFGMxpaXPM ConFac
K Mason Crosby, GB @CHI 1144 ****
Crosby has been the tortoise, a steady contributor with just two games of less than seven points all season long. He can handle the elements and will be banked on for points in a must-win game for the Packers, so he definitely has fantasy upside this week.

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
WR Percy Harvin 20 7-100,1
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 STL 20000016010 ***
It's been a month since Wilson's last multiple touchdown outing, and he's topped out at just 206 passing yards over that span. He threw for 139 and 2 in the win in St. Louis, but with just one rushing score in his last dozen games Wilson has had to rely on his passing for fantasy numbers--and they simply haven't been there.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB Marshawn Lynch, SEA STL 7012100000 ***
The Rams haven't allowed a 50-yard rusher since Week 12, a 100-yard rusher since Week 9, and held Lynch to a pedestrian 23 yard outing back in Week 8. Lynch hasn't had a 100-yard game since Week 9, but he has nine touchdowns in seven home games and will at minimum get you a score--with the upside of something better.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Doug Baldwin, SEA STL 005600000 ***
Baldwin has the Seahawks' last three WR TDs, so he's the most likely candidate to take advantage of a Rams' secondary that's allowed at least one receiver to score or top 98 yards in each of the past six games.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
TE Zach Miller, SEA STL 000004301 ****
Miller scored last week, but that was against Arizona--everybody's tight end scores against Arizona. This is the Rams, a team that held Miller to 14 yards in the previous meeting and has given up just four TE TDs on the season.

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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