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: SF 31, MIN 17 (Line: SF by 7)

Players to Watch: Kyle Rudolph

This is going to be just like 25 years ago only not the part where the Vikings have a good team. The 49ers are 2-0 and have the early season look of the team to beat this year. The Vikings are 1-1 thanks to the home game against the Jaguars and just lost on the road in Indianapolis. Hard to imagine this could be a trap game. 49ers are on fire so far and the Vikes defense is not. It is also too early for the 49ers to have a let down game.

San Francisco 49ers
Homefield: Monster Park
Grass
  Opp Score   Opp Score
1 @GB 30-22 10 STL -----
2 DET 27-19 11 CHI -----
3 @MIN ----- 12 @NO -----
4 @NYJ ----- 13 @STL -----
5 BUF ----- 14 MIA -----
6 NYG ----- 15 @NE -----
7 SEA ----- 16 @SEA -----
8 @ARI ----- 17 ARI -----
9 BYE ----- ----- ----- -----
News | Statistics | Roster
vs Rush Catch Pass
WR Pierre Garcon
WR Louis Murphy 2-30
WR Aldrick Robinson 5-70,1
PK Robbie Gould 2 FG 3 XP

Pregame Notes: We all knew the 49ers defense was likely to be the best this season. Now the offense is kicking it into a higher gear and that just makes this team even harder to beat. They have already spun through what are two of the highest scoring offenses in the league last year and made it look easy.

Alex Smith has two efforts right around 225 yards and two scores in each with no turnovers. He's been more accurate and now has more weapons. The oddity is that adding Randy Moss and Mario Manningham have just made Michael Crabtree and Vernon Davis better. Davis has scored three times to tie for the NFL touchdown lead for the position. Crabtree has 13 catches for 143 yards as the most targeted receiver.

Frank Gore is starting the season red hot just like 2011. Though he has been limited to only 16 or 17 carries per game, he has averaged around 100 yards and scored each week. His role as a receiver has really waned though and that will come into play in future weeks when the 49ers face a tougher rush defense. Gore is running hard and doesn't look like a back who has lost a step. At least not yet.

Kendall Hunter is getting more playing time though not enough to merit any fantasy attention. The rookie LaMichael James has not played yet. So far the offense is limited to Gore, Crabtree and Davis like old times but they are getting the job done. Randy Moss scored in week one but only was thrown one pass last Sunday.

The Vikings have been good against the run but their pass defense has been the downfall and that is after only facing the Jaguars and Colts. The rushing effort may not be huge here but an early and substantial lead would lead to a tired Vikings defense by the end of the game.

I like a defensive score in this game as well.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points SF 11 12 17 7 9 22
Preventing Fantasy Points MIN 20 5 24 16 25 16

  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
QB C.J. Beathard, SF SEA 20000021011 ***
No writeup available
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
QB Jimmy Garoppolo, SF SEA 00000000 *
No writeup available
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB Carlos Hyde, SF SEA 9013200000 ***
Hyde seems to have a thing for laying the smack down on the Seattle defense. He went for 124 yards earlier this year, plus 19 aerial gains, and posted two scores with 103 yards last year in one contest. Seattle has granted a bunch of rushing scores (one per game) in the last five weeks.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB Matt Breida, SF SEA 2002200000 ***
Seattle has dominated RBs when it comes to yards against, though the position has managed to score six total times in five games (1 receiving). Breida is a wild flier in any setup.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Marquise Goodwin, SF SEA 003501000 ***
He caught three for 26 in the earlier game and faces an entirely different Seattle secondary. The Seahawks offense is good enough to force the 49ers to chuck it aplenty, so Goodwin could emerge as a worthwhile fantasy gamble.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Trent Taylor, SF SEA 003300000 ***
Taylor looks like he could return this week. Even if he dresses, it is awfully dangerous to count on him in a lineup.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
TE Garrett Celek, SF SEA 002200000 ***
No writeup available
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
TE George Kittle, SF SEA 00000000 *
Kittle could return this week. Stop back Friday for more clarity on his situation. The matchup is rather neutral but could be better with the secondary injuries to Seattle.
  Opp fgaFGMxpaXPM ConFac
K Robbie Gould, SF SEA 0022 ***
Seattle has permitted kickers to average the eighth-most extra points but just the third-fewest field goals on a per-game clip. This is the seventh-worst matchup overall.

Minnesota Vikings
Homefield: Metrodome
FieldTurf
  Opp Score   Opp Score
1 JAC 26-23 ot 10 DET -----
2 @IND 20-23 11 BYE -----
3 SF ----- 12 @CHI -----
4 @DET ----- 13 @GB -----
5 TEN ----- 14 CHI -----
6 @WAS ----- 15 @STL -----
7 ARI ----- 16 @HOU -----
8 TB ----- 17 GB -----
9 @SEA ----- ----- ----- -----
News | Statistics | Roster
MIN vs SF Rush Catch Pass
QB Sam Bradford 200,1
TE Kyle Rudolph 4-40

Pregame Notes: While it would seem good that the Vikes are playing each week to three point swings, the reality is that the first two games against the Jaguars and Colts may have represented the easiest opening for any team. And now comes the toughest defense just to show them the difference.

Christian Ponder continues his average play but turned in two touchdowns in Indianapolis for an unusually productive game. He's looked adequate so far but against lesser opponents. Getting back Jerome Simpson next week should help stretch the field and open it up more for the other receivers.

Currently Percy Harvin is the only wideout worth covering and his 21 targets in two weeks dwarf any other receiver. He still has not scored but is averaging 94 yards per game and comes off 12 catches last week. Michael Jenkins offers only marginal help and the only real hope here is that the tight end Kyle Rudolph can fill his potential. The second-year player scored last week but has remained only good for around 50 yards per game. That is a step up from last year though and he will eventually become a bigger part of the passing equation.

Adrian Peterson only managed 60 yards on 16 carries in Indianapolis after his week one scoring spree suggested he was already back in form. It is encouraging to see Peterson used as a receiver three times last week but it will take some time before vintage ADP can be expected.

After two close games, the Vikings face the cream of the crop with the 49ers showing up. This will be a little tougher than the first two weeks facing teams that combined for a 7-25 record last season.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points MIN 22 15 12 18 4 28
Preventing Fantasy Points SF 17 1 23 27 12 21

  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
QB Case Keenum, MIN @DET 0000028011 ***
Keenum didn't throw a TD in the Week 4 meeting with the Vikings, nor did he make any big mistakes. Counting on him for a big fantasy day -- or even a starting-quality effort -- might be asking for a bit much.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB Latavius Murray, MIN @DET 601000000 ***
Murray should benefit from the matchup in relation to what it offers for the more versatile Jerick McKinnon. Detroit has been far worse against rushing gains than the aerial offerings. One in every 17.4 carries has scored, which is the second-softest rate in football.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB Jerick McKinnon, MIN @DET 4004300000 ***
Dalvin Cook was the back in the first meeting. McKinnon has been up and down, so this one comes with some risk. The Lions not allowed much through the air (no TDs on 20 catches) but have been steamrolled on the ground. One in 17.4 rushes has scored (2nd), and this defense is allowing the ninth-most rushing yards a week.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Adam Thielen, MIN @DET 006801000 ***
Thielen is playing on a different level at this point, but he has gone three straight games vs. Detroit without a touchdown. This projection is probably a little optimistic. Either way, he's definitely a must-start in all conventional formats. Only two of the last 47 receptions have scored against the Lions.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Stefon Diggs, MIN @DET 004600000 ***
Diggs was good for 98 yards on five grabs in the Week 4 game. Last year, he played in only the Week 9 contest at Detroit and went for 13-80-0 on 14 targets. Diggs has been largely silent in recent weeks. He has midrange appeal in PPR formats.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
TE Kyle Rudolph, MIN @DET 003300000 ***
Rudolph's production has been all over the map vs. Detroit in teh last three meetings. He has one TD, which came on his lone catch in the first 2016 game. The Lions are light years better at stopping the position this season, ranking as the 21st-best matchup.
  Opp fgaFGMxpaXPM ConFac
K Kai Forbath, MIN @DET 3322 ***
A lone point is all Forbath could muster in the Week 4 matchup with Detroit. The Lions have surrendered 2.5 XPAs and 1.8 FGAs on average, with two of the seven field goals missing since Week 6.

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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