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Predictions & Projections
David Dorey
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WEEK 4
2012
CLE at BAL (THU) *MIN at DET *OAK at DEN *TEN at HOU
CAR at ATL *NE at BUF *SD at KC *WAS at TB
*CIN at JAC *NO at GB *SEA at STL *CHI at DAL (MON)
*Updated *MIA at ARI *NYG at PHI *SF at NYJ Bye: IND, PIT

Prediction: CIN 27, JAC 17 (Line:CIN by 1)

Players to Watch: Andrew Hawkins

Player Updated: Laurent Robinson

The 2-1 Bengals are on a roll with 34+ points in these last two weeks and travel to face the 1-2 Jaguars who come off their first win thanks to the Colts. Problem this week is that the Bengals can post points and the Jaguars have to rely on Maurice Jones-Drew to just about do everything for the offense.

The Bengals won 30-20 at Jacksonville last year.

Cincinnati Bengals
Homefield: Paul Brown Stadium
FieldTurf
  Opp Score   Opp Score
1 @BAL 13-44 10 NYG -----
2 CLE 34-27 11 @KC -----
3 @WAS 38-31 12 OAK -----
4 @JAC ----- 13 @SD -----
5 MIA ----- 14 DAL -----
6 @CLE ----- 15 @PHI -----
7 PIT ----- 16 @PIT -----
8 BYE ----- 17 BAL -----
9 DEN ----- ----- ----- -----
News | Statistics | Roster
CIN @ JAC Rush Catch Pass
QB Andy Dalton 280,2
WR A.J. Green 6-100,1
WR Greg Little 3-30
TE Jermaine Gresham 5-50
PK Mike Nugent 2 FG 3 XP

Pregame Notes: The Bengals hit a softer spot in their schedule with upcoming games against the Jaguars, Dolphins and Browns. Andy Dalton had a predictably started the year with a bad game in Baltimore but now has two straight 310+ yard, three touchdown efforts. He still throws one interception each week but never more. The season started with only A.J. Green as a known weapon but Dalton is creating new and effective other receivers.

Andrew Hawkins is becoming a deadly slot receiver who is incredible in open field. The diminutive wideout has scored in each of the last two games and while he only had two catches in each game, he averaged about 30 yards per catch. Hawkins is a very nice find already on the roster who is making a difference. Armon Binns has been improved these last two weeks as well. The common bond here is Dalton who is stepping up in his second season and already improved from his rookie season that ended up in the playoffs.

Jermaine Gresham scored last week and has been solid enough around 40 yards per week but is not becoming an elite tight end thanks to Dalton using the previously unknown wide receivers so well. Granted - just two games against the Browns and Redskins but the offense has looked as good as could be hoped. And that should continue here for the next three games at the least.

BenJarvus Green-Ellis has two scores on the season but the yardage has been decreasing weekly and he was held to just 38 yards on 17 carries last week. That should change this week against a Jaguars defense weak against the run. This is a good test for Dalton since the Jaguars rank well against quarterbacks but Dalton is playing at a high level and just last week the Colts posted 313 pass yards on them with two touchdowns.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points CIN 8 27 1 17 17 15
Preventing Fantasy Points JAC 10 30 9 12 23 5

  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
QB Andy Dalton, CIN @PIT 0000027021 ***
The Steelers have given up 300-plus passing yards in three straight games and multiple touchdown tosses in eight of the last nine. That stretch includes Dalton's 302 and 2 (with a rushing TD to boot), though in two subsequent games Andy has a total of 263 and 2. The tiebreaker is Dalton's penchant for coming up small in big games, so while there's upside in the matchup you'll likely want to find fantasy help elsewhere.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB Jeremy Hill, CIN @PIT 9001100000 ****
Hill averaged almost six yards a carry in limited work against the Steelers in the earlier matchup; since then he's racked up a pair of 140-yard games--still at a six-yards per carry pace. Hill is on a roll, and while Pittsburgh has been relatively solid against the run they've shown a weakness for bigger backs like Arian Foster, Mark Ingram... and, this week, Hill.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB Giovani Bernard, CIN @PIT 2003200000 ***
Gio has become the complimentary guy, and in a tough matchup he's a far riskier fantasy play than the Bengals' current bell cow, Jeremy Hill.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR A.J. Green, CIN @PIT 005801000 *
Green gashed the Steelers for 11-224-1 just three weeks ago. He's banged up coming out of the win over Denver, but all indications are he'll play--and against a secondary that's allowed three 130-plus yard receivers in the past month, all indications are he'll perform well.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Mohamed Sanu, CIN @PIT 004500000 ***
It was all AJ Green the last time Cincy faced Pittsburgh, and that's become typical of the Bengals passing game as Sanu hasn't scored since Week 12 or topped 50 yards since Week 9. He's never broken 40 yards against the Steelers; no reason to believe that changes here.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
TE Jermaine Gresham, CIN @PIT 005601000 ***
There's hope for Gresham this week against a Steelers defense that's allowed six TE TDs in the past eight games. Gresham has scored in two of the last three, including last week and the earlier matchup with Pittsburgh. At this juncture there's no WR2 to AJ Green, so Gresham could fill that opening.
  Opp fgaFGMxpaXPM ConFac
K Mike Nugent, CIN @PIT 2222 ***
The Nuge is coming off his best two-game stretch of the season; the Steelers have allowed six field goals in their last two. Almost makes you believe he's a safe bet to improve upon his three point performance in the earlier meeting with Pittsburgh in Week 14. Almost.

Jacksonville Jaguars
Homefield: J'ville Municipal Stadium
Grass
  Opp Score   Opp Score
1 @MIN 23-26 ot 10 IND -----
2 HOU 7-27 11 @HOU -----
3 @IND 22-17 12 TEN -----
4 CIN ----- 13 @BUF -----
5 CHI ----- 14 NYJ -----
6 BYE ----- 15 @MIA -----
7 @OAK ----- 16 NE -----
8 @GB ----- 17 @TEN -----
9 DET ----- ----- ----- -----
News | Statistics | Roster
vs Rush Catch Pass
RB Toby Gerhart 20
WR Justin Blackmon 3-40
WR Cecil Shorts 2-30
TE Marcedes Lewis 4-40
PK Josh Scobee 1 FG 2 XP

Pregame Notes: The Jaguars mounted a nice comeback to take down the Colts last week but this team still looks far too similar to 2011 when Maurice Jones-Drew had to provide all the offensive punch and Blaine Gabbert ended as the worst ranked starting quarterback. The win in Indy happened thanks in no small part to Jones-Drew running for 177 yards and one score on 27 carries. He was held to fewer than 20 carries in the two previous losses and that alone is the key here. Either stop Jones-Drew and you stop the Jaguars or you force the Jaguars to throw and limit the damage that the run game can do. There is really no reason not to load up the defense against one running back when facing the Jaguars.

Gabbert passes for a respectable - if not shocking - 260 yards and two scores in Minnesota. But these last two weeks were vintage Gabbert - one score and only 208 pass yards from both weeks combined. Gabbert has only completed 40 of 79 passes. Last week would have been another 80 yard debacle were it not for the 80-yard fluke touchdown by Cecil Shorts.

Second year and the passing game is still in shambles. It is not the receivers fault. Laurent Robinson had no catches last week and only eight on the season. Justin Blackmon has gone from being the best college wideout in the NFL draft to producing just one catch for seven yards over the last two weeks. The entire passing game here is absent any fantasy value for the second season in a row. They changed the receivers out for proven players. No different results mean they need to change the quarterback.

The good news is that the Bengals defense has been weak against the run so Jones-Drew gets the green flag this week. And even Gabbert may look nearly adequate against a defense that has been giving up a could scores to every opposing quarterback. In the end, that won't be enough again.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points JAC 29 13 32 31 24 32
Preventing Fantasy Points CIN 30 29 16 26 28 29

  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
QB Blake Bortles, JAC @HOU 30000019001 ***
Bortles threw for 336 yards in the earlier meeting with Tennessee, but he accompanied that total with just one TD--and he hasn't had a game as helpful to fantasy owners since. No reason to reach for him here.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB Toby Gerhart, JAC @HOU 4002100000 ***
The Texans are far from an easy mark from running backs; since their Week 10 bye the haven't allowed a running back touchdown, and only one back (Jeremy Hill) has rushed for more than 60 yards. Gerhart should see the largest volume of carries, but doubtful it will be enough for him to squeeze out fantasy value.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Marqise Lee, JAC @HOU 004500000 ***
It's been a consistent grouping of Jacksonville receivers; last week it was Lee's 4-65 that paced the pack. With three mouths to feed and not a lot of stats to go around, your best bet is to avoid the Jacksonville WR situation entirely.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Allen Hurns, JAC @HOU 005400000 ***
Hurns found the end zone the last time these teams met, part of a 5-36-1 afternoon. He's been wildly inconsistent, with an upside of his 7-112-2 game and a downside of being the third wheel in Jacksonville's passing game. The upside doesn't come nearly frequently enough, so plan accordingly.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Cecil Shorts, JAC @HOU 002300000 ***
Shorts continues to audition for his impending free agency, though last week's 2-15 won't add much to his bank account. You'll want to find your fantasy receivers elsewhere.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
TE Marcedes Lewis, JAC @HOU 003400000 ***
Lewis' 69 yards in the earlier meeting with Houston was the biggest TE game the Texans had allowed since Week 1. It was also Lewis' best effort since Week 2; while he scored last week, his typical three or four targets doesn't offer enough opportunity for him to be a reliable fantasy performer.
  Opp fgaFGMxpaXPM ConFac
K Josh Scobee, JAC @HOU 2100 ****
Scobee's recent surge has him over five points per game for the season, and he tallied seven when facing the Texans three weeks back. So if something in the half-dozen neighborhood floats your boat, Scobee is your guy.

WEEK 4
2012
CLE at BAL (THU) *MIN at DET *OAK at DEN *TEN at HOU
CAR at ATL *NE at BUF *SD at KC *WAS at TB
*CIN at JAC *NO at GB *SEA at STL *CHI at DAL (MON)
*Updated *MIA at ARI *NYG at PHI *SF at NYJ Bye: IND, PIT

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