FANTASY FOOTBALL IN-SEASON FEATURES

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: MIA 13, ARI 27 (Line: ARI by 6)

Players to Watch: Ryan Williams

Player Updated: Reggie Bush, Beanie Wells, Ryan Williams

The 1-2 Dolphins are still struggling with their rookie quarterback still learning the ropes and the defense not quite good enough make up the difference. The 3-0 Cardinals are already one of the biggest surprises of the season having beaten the Seahawks, Patriots and Eagles. And doing it with a vastly underrated defense. Each week brings big upsets but this one seems far too unlikely to give the Fins a chance.

Miami Dolphins
Homefield: Dolphins Stadium
Grass
  Opp Score   Opp Score
1 @HOU 10-30 10 TEN -----
2 OAK 35-13 11 @BUF -----
3 NYJ 20-23 12 SEA -----
4 @ARI ----- 13 NE -----
5 @CIN ----- 14 @SF -----
6 STL ----- 15 JAC -----
7 BYE ----- 16 BUF -----
8 @NYJ ----- 17 @NE -----
9 @IND ----- ----- ----- -----
News | Statistics | Roster
MIA @ ARI Rush Catch Pass
QB Jay Cutler 20 180,1
QB Ryan Tannehill 10 190,1
TE Anthony Fasano 4-40

Pregame Notes: The offense is still trying to come together with Ryan Tannehill at the helm but he only has one passing touchdown on the season while hanging around 200 pass yards every week. To his credit, he has only thrown one interception in the last two games and been sacked just once as well. But the problem is that this offense requires a very capable quarterback that can use a multitude of average receivers. The Fins just are not there yet.

Reggie Bush has been the star of the offense but suffered a knee sprain last week. He has no structural damage and is even expected to practice this week and play. If Bush cannot go, the Fins rely on both Daniel Thomas and Lamar Miller. Practice reports will clear up the status for Bush but it appears that he dodged a bullet and will return this week. Bush is averaging just over six yards per carry and his absence was one reason why the Jets beat them last week.

The receivers here about as productive as the ones in Jacksonville but without all that talent and potential. Brian Hartline has the sole decent game with 111 yards against the Raiders but there has only been one passing touchdown all year and that went to Anthony Fasano. Davone Bess offers moderate yardage at best and there are no other receivers of any consequence on the roster. The entirety of the passing game is throwing to Hartline, Bess and Reggie Bush with maybe one or two completions to Fasano.

The only fantasy value here is Reggie Bush. The only real weapon is Bush. He is probably already planning on his holdout next summer (pssst - Reggie. Talk to MJD first).

This week heading into Arizona is not going to be pretty. The Cardinals defense is playing at a high level and now are at home against the worst passing attack in the league. We can only hope that Bush survives the game.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points MIA 32 3 31 27 29 22
Preventing Fantasy Points ARI 7 4 10 7 21 9

  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
QB Jay Cutler, MIA @KC 0000023012 ***
Quarterbacks have thrown a mere four TDs in the last five games, averaging only 231.4 aerial yards in those contests, against the Chiefs. This is the seventh-worst matchup of the week as the position averaged 18.2 fantasy points in that string of contests.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB Kenyan Drake, MIA @KC 9015400000 ***
Drake has been a fantasy goldmine in the last three weeks, going for at least 23 PPR points in each contest. Over the past five weeks, KC has yielded five offensive TDs in as many games. The matchup is soundly neutral, which works in Drake's favor.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Jarvis Landry, MIA @KC 006601000 ***
KC offers the sixth-hardest matchup in PPR and fourth-worst in standard scoring. The Chiefs have allowed only one of the last 59 receptions by the position to score, traversing five games of action.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR DeVante Parker, MIA @KC 004500000 ***
Since Week 10, wideouts have one touchdown in five games against the Chiefs. That rate of one every 59 catches is the third toughest to exploit in football. This matchup sits 22nd for yardage and 15th for receptions on a weekly basis.

Update: Parker (ankle) is questionable, though he should be fine after fully practicing Friday.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Kenny Stills, MIA @KC 002300000 ***
While Stills is always the scoring threat from anywhere on the field, KC has done a masterful job of limiting receiver touchdowns in the past five games. Only one of the last 59 catches by the position has found the end zone, and this is a bottom-six matchup in both scoring formats.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
TE Julius Thomas, MIA @KC 003200000 ***
No writeup available
  Opp fgaFGMxpaXPM ConFac
K Cody Parkey, MIA @KC 1122 ***
This is the eighth-worst matchup for combined kicking chances (18th FGA, 26th XPA), and 82.4 percent of all kicks made it through the posts.

Arizona Cardinals
Homefield: University of Phoenix Stadium
Grass
  Opp Score   Opp Score
1 SEA 20-16 10 BYE -----
2 @NE 20-18 11 @ATL -----
3 PHI 27-6 12 STL -----
4 MIA ----- 13 @NYJ -----
5 @STL ----- 14 @SEA -----
6 BUF ----- 15 DET -----
7 @MIN ----- 16 CHI -----
8 SF ----- 17 @SF -----
9 @GB ----- ----- ----- -----
News | Statistics | Roster
ARI vs MIA Rush Catch Pass
QB Blaine Gabbert 220,1
QB Carson Palmer 270,2
RB Adrian Peterson 80 2-10
WR Larry Fitzgerald 8-100,2
TE Jermaine Gresham 5-50
PK Phil Dawson 2 FG 1 XP

Pregame Notes: The offense may not be explosive quite yet but at 3-0 it does not need to be. The Cardinals defense has been dominating and Patrick Peterson is becoming the new Darrelle Revis (the one with intact ligaments before last week). This has become a dominating defense and that was against the Patriots in their stadium. The Eagles came down last week and was outscored by the Cardinals defense on one play.

Kevin Kolb is now 3-0 and John Skelton is going to have to wait because there is no chance the Cardinals upset an offense that is already working. Kolb has thrown a score in every game but only posts game manager sort of yardage. Then again - he still has not thrown an interception. He's not the fantasy darling we all want but he is a winning quarterback running the Cards well enough to be undefeated.

Beanie Wells left with a toe injury last week that is now thought to be a turf toe. That can can him out of games and linger for many weeks. The big news here though is that Ryan Williams had been marginal in sharing with Wells and alluded to his old patella injury as being on his mind and making him a little tentative. But once Wells last the Eagles game, Williams ripped off several nice runs and ended with 83 yards on 13 carries. In Arizona, that is equivalent to Jamaal Charles gaining 233 yards. Should Wells miss games or just play them even worse than he would anyway, the door may be opening for Williams to take charge. It won't take much to dislodge oft-injury Wells and Williams had the talent coming into the league.

Larry Fitzgerald finally showed up for 2012 when he gained 114 yards and a score on nine receptions against the Eagles. He is still the only real receiver for the Cards though Michael Floyd has his first NFL catch go for a touchdown last Sunday. It was his only catch this year.

A dominating defense, the promise of better rushing with Williams means Fitzgerald won't be all alone trying to win games. It also means defenses won't load up on him and only him. The Dolphins are bringing in a weaker offense that should be chewed up by the defensive effort. That means the Cardinals offense should remain in the drivers seat this week. I like a defensive score in this game.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points ARI 23 31 20 23 16 4
Preventing Fantasy Points MIA 14 20 14 15 27 21

  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
QB Drew Stanton, ARI NYG 0000024020 ***
Blaine Gabbert heads back to the pine with Stanton healthy enough to reclaim the starting gig after the former struggled mightily in Week 15. The Giants have permitted 265.6 yards and a TD every 11.2 receptions -- both ranking eighth in their respective categories. Since Week 10, this is the fifth-best matchup if you remove three quarterback rushing TDs from the equation.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB Elijhaa Penny, ARI NYG 6002100000 **
New York isn't a great matchup for touchdowns, and the Cardinals may struggle to give the powerful runner a chance anyway. This is the sixth-best matchup for rushing yards, but the rest of the appeal is directed toward PPR backs. Penny will see the majority of the work if Kerwynn Williams cannot go.

Update: It seems unlikely Williams will play after failing to log more than one limited session all week. He is officially questionable and a gametime decision.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB Kerwynn Williams, ARI NYG 300000000 *
Williams' status is unclear at this time. He missed Wednesday's session with a quad injury. Check back Friday for more details.

Update: It seems unlikely Williams will play after failing to log more than one limited session all week.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Larry Fitzgerald, ARI NYG 0061000000 ***
Fitz has averaged 14.9 fantasy points per game in his last five outings. The Giants, meanwhile, have permitted team averages of 11.2 receptions (18th), 146.8 yards (15th) and a touchdown every 9.3 catches (6th), or six of them in the last five contests.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Jaron Brown, ARI NYG 002300000 ***
Brown has a good matchup but too minute of a role with five catches spread over his last four games.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
TE Jermaine Gresham, ARI NYG 003301000 ***
Gresham sat out last week, and despite a good matchup, gamers can do better. He has seven catches in his last four games.

Update: Gresham is no longer on the injury report.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
TE Ricky Seals-Jones, ARI NYG 001200000 ***
The rookie hasn't scored in three weeks and shouldn't be a fantasy consideration in anything but DFS action. New York is weak against the position, but it isn't enough to overcome a limited role and the uncertainty of a return to QB Drew Stanton.
  Opp fgaFGMxpaXPM ConFac
K Phil Dawson, ARI NYG 3322 ***
Dawson faces a top-10 matchup for field goal and extra point attempts, in addition to possible fantasy points per contest.

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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