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 Ryan Tannehill 10 190,1
RB Lamar Miller 10 2-10
RB Daniel Thomas 20
WR Brandon Gibson 3-40
WR Brian Hartline 5-40

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 Ryan Tannehill, MIA @NE 20000024011 ***
Tannehill has multiple TD tosses in three straight against New England, but his upside is limited as the only quarterbacks to throw for 300 yards against the Patriots are elite-level guys Peyton Manning, Andrew Luck, and Aaron Rodgers. Adequate yardage and a couple scores put Tannehill on the fringe of fantasy relevancy.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB Lamar Miller, MIA @NE 6004200000 ***
Miller remains stuck around the 50 yard mark with maybe a touchdown, and nothing the Patriots have allowed suggests he'll exceed those numbers. He's a fringe fantasy helper at best this week.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Jarvis Landry, MIA @NE 005701000 ***
Landry was a non-factor in the earlier meeting but could be the go-to receiver if Darrelle Revis locks down Mike Wallace. It won't be a cakewalk for the rookie, but his odds of posting helpful fantasy numbers are certainly better than a Revis-covered Wallace.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Mike Wallace, MIA @NE 004600000 ***
Wallace has scored in two straight against the Patriots, but all that means is he likely gets slapped with Darrelle Revis this week and watches his production go bye-bye.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Brian Hartline, MIA @NE 003400000 ****
Third receivers often find success against the Patriots, not surprising when you consider who their top two cornerbacks are. Hartline could follow in the footsteps of Davante Adams, Hakeem Nicks, and Chris Hogan, though the upside is limited.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
TE Charles Clay, MIA @NE 003400000 ***
Clay is sharing looks with Dion Sims and facing a pretty good defense against tight ends, so look elsewhere for fantasy help.
Update: Oh, and Clay is also dealing with hamstring and knee injuries and was limited in practice all week. So he's got that working against him as well.
  Opp fgaFGMxpaXPM ConFac
K Caleb Sturgis, MIA @NE 3311 ***
Sturgis' biggest game of the season came against Miami back in Week 1 when he hit four treys and three PATs in the Dolphins' win. New England hasn't allowed as much since, and it would be folly to bank on such a big number in New England. But at least you know he can put points on the board against the Patriots so he can remain on your fantasy radar.

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 Carson Palmer 270,2
WR Larry Fitzgerald 8-100,2
WR Michael Floyd 2-30

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 @STL 0000024012 ***
Stanton saw the Rams in relief back in Week 10, throwing for 85 yards and a touchdown. He's fallen off that pace fantasy-wise, with just two TDs in the past three games, and he catches a surging Rams D that has pitched back to back shutouts. No reason to think he's a fantasy helper this week.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB Kerwynn Williams, ARI @STL 500000000 ***
Williams emerged as the Cards' feature back with Andre Ellington out. And while the Chiefs were no picnic, now he'll face a Rams D that's allowed 53 yards or less to the last four feature backs they've faced--with none of them reaching the end zone. Temper your enthusiasm about your new find.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB Stepfan Taylor, ARI @STL 2002100000 ***
Taylor was leap-frogged by Kerwynn Williams for feature back carries last week. No reason for a secondary option like Taylor to become a fantasy factor against a Rams D that hasn't allowed a visiting RB to score against them since DeMarco Murray did so in Week 3.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR John Brown, ARI @STL 003401000 **
Brown scored in the earlier meeting with the Rams, on a throw from Drew Stanton. However, Jaron Brown scored last week while John was shut out--and there's no guarantee anybody gets into the end zone against the Rams so look elsewhere for fantasy assistance.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Larry Fitzgerald, ARI @STL 005700000 ***
Fitz is back in the lineup but his last two outings haven't been fantasy helpers. He did take the Rams for 9-112 in the earlier meeting, but that was a Carson Palmer start finished by Drew Stanton. Between the matchup, Fitz's knee and the Cards' QB issues you should be able to find a better fantasy option elsewhere.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Michael Floyd, ARI @STL 002400000 ***
The speedy Floyd is the kind of receiver that finds success against the Rams (Keenan Allen, Emmanuel Sanders), but he had just one catch in the earlier meeting and he's been too inconsistent to be banked on for a fantasy helper this week.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
TE John Carlson, ARI @STL 003300000 ***
The Rams have allowed two TE TDs on the year, none since Week 7. Carlson owns the Cards' only TE TD and racked up 33 yards in the earlier meeting with St. Louis. Nothing in those previous sentences suggests you give Carlson a fantasy start this week.
  Opp fgaFGMxpaXPM ConFac
K Chandler Catanzaro, ARI @STL 3211 ***
Catanzaro hasn't seen double-digits since Week 6; the Rams haven't allowed a single point since Week 12. Catanzaro tallied seven points in the earlier matchup with the Rams, and that feels optimistic this week.

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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