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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: SF 23, NYJ 13 (Line: SF by 4.5)

Players to Watch: Bilal Powell, Jonathan Grimes

Player Updated: Jonathan Grimes

So maybe the 2-1 49ers are not all that and a delicious sour dough bowl of clam chowder. The loss in Minnesota makes this third road game in four weeks a little more important. The 2-1 Jets have taken down two of their divisional rivals and then lost horribly in Pittsburgh. The 49ers defense should be plenty good enough here though the same thing was said just last week.

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 13-24 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
SF @ NYJ Rush Catch Pass
QB Blaine Gabbert 220,1
RB Frank Gore 90,1 2-10
RB Kendall Hunter 20 1-10
WR Jon Baldwin 3-40
WR Anquan Boldin 4-50,1
WR Michael Crabtree 6-70,1
WR Steve Johnson 4-60,1
WR Brandon Lloyd 6-100,1
TE Vernon Davis 5-70,1
PK Phil Dawson 2 FG 1 XP

Pregame Notes: It all went surprisingly south last week when the 49ers just never was in the game in Minneapolis. They trailed the entire way and the Vikings defense put the clamps on them. It was almost surrealistic but an example of the volatility of this season of parity.

Smith remains a game manager and hangs around 220 yards every week with one or two touchdowns. He's only thrown one interception so far though and his performance against the Vikings was a clear sign that the 49ers just did not prepare enough for the sloppy game.

Frank Gore was scoring every week but left Minnesota with just 63 yards on 12 runs as the 49ers largely abandoned the running effort with a growing deficit on the scoreboard. Kendall Hunter has become invisible by now with four runs for no gain last week. This is Gore's show for whatever that may mean each week. In all cases, it almost never means more than one reception per game.

Vernon Davis is the star with a score in every game (two vs. DET) and while there are all those other receivers now in San Francisco, Smith still just looks for Davis. Difference this year is that he is not constantly doubled and tripled covered.

Randy Moss went back to Minny but only caught three passes for 27 yards and he's just not much in the game plan. Hard to drop for a fantasy team since the 49ers are almost certain to need him later, but no way he can be considered a starter. He just doesn't get nearly enough passes to matter. Michael Crabtree remains the primary wideout and yet still has not scored. This is still a mostly pedestrian passing attack and the only change is that Davis is more open this season.

The Jets just lost Darrelle Revis for the year with a torn ACL and that is just good fantasy news for all opponents. Maybe a little less so with the 49ers.The Jets defense just became ordinary.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points SF 19 18 22 5 7 26
Preventing Fantasy Points NYJ 9 25 15 14 11 6

  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
QB Colin Kaepernick, SF @ARI 20000020021 ****
From a fantasy perspective Kaepernick has largely disappointed since his 412 & 3 back in Week 1. He did throw for 252 & 2 against Arizona earlier this year, but he has just one game with multiple touchdown passes in the past month and hasn't topped 275 passing yards since Week 1 so he's no lock for fantasy success here.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB Frank Gore, SF @ARI 500000000 ***
The Cardinals have allowed just two RB TDs in Arizona and just five running back scores on the season. Gore owns the only 100-yard effort the Cards have given up, but Kendall Hunter swiped the TD when these clubs met back in Week 6. Frank hasn't scored on the road since Week 8 in Jacksonville, but if he sees the same 20-plus carries he's received each of the past two games he's a decent bet for fantasy productivity even given the tough matchup.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Anquan Boldin, SF @ARI 005601000 ***
Boldin scored last week, and he continues to be just as targeted as Michael Crabtree. Between a stout Arizona secondary that hasn't allowed a WR TD since Week 10 and a run-first 49ers offense there's not a ton of upside here, but both wideouts are still solid bets to be at minimum fantasy helpers.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Michael Crabtree, SF @ARI 003400000 ***
Arizona hasn't allowed a WR TD since Week 10; then again, they haven't had to face Crabtree yet, and he scored four times in the two-game series last year. Coming off a 102-yard outing, Crabtree is a solid bet to pace the San Francisco passing game.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
TE Vernon Davis, SF @ARI 006801000 *****
The last time Davis saw the Cardinals he torched them for 8-180-2. Last week he broke hearts by pitching a shutout on Monday night, but this matchup with the most TE-friendly defense in the league should help him regain at least some of his street cred.
  Opp fgaFGMxpaXPM ConFac
K Phil Dawson, SF @ARI 2222 ***
Dawson had a dozen in the earlier meeting with Arizona and has double-digit points in four straight. No reason he won't get his kick on once again this week.

New York Jets
Homefield: Meadowlands Stadium
FieldTurf
  Opp Score   Opp Score
1 BUF 48-28 10 @SEA -----
2 @PIT 10-27 11 @STL -----
3 @MIA 23-20 12 NE -----
4 SF ----- 13 ARI -----
5 HOU ----- 14 @JAC -----
6 IND ----- 15 @TEN -----
7 @NE ----- 16 SD -----
8 MIA ----- 17 @BUF -----
9 BYE ----- ----- ----- -----
News | Statistics | Roster
NYJ vs SF Rush Catch Pass
QB Michael Vick 40 250,2
RB Chris Johnson 20 5-30
RB Bilal Powell 20 2-20
RB Daryl Richardson 30 2-10
WR Eric Decker 6-80,1
WR Jeremy Kerley 4-50
PK Nick Folk 2 FG 1 XP

Pregame Notes: The Jets outlasted the Dolphins last week but losing Darrelle Revis throws a whole new light on the entire team literally. Revis was the center of the defense and the defense was good enough because of him. And a good defense meant the offense could cough and sputter and yet the Jets still got away with it at times. The Jets are not going to fall apart because of this. But they are not going to get any better.

So far Mark Sanchez is hard to measure as he has faced two divisional rivals - always a different affair for any quarterback - and posted decent enough stats but the one game against the Steelers was a 10-27, 138 yard flop. This will be a big test for him and the 49ers have been very good against the pass.

The interesting development for the Jets is the apparent realization by Rex Ryan that maybe centering the entire rushing game on Shonn Greene is not the optimal solution. Greene has rushed 57 times and gained 157 yards for a hefty 2.7 yard per carry average. Greene has always been a slug but the coaches still supported him. Ryan appears to either be seeing the light or he finally got the negatives from some incriminating photos. This may end up with more use of Bilal Powell and Joe McKnight as he mentioned, but this is a bad week to see what other backs might do given a bigger chance.

Dustin Keller has missed two games with a hamstring strain and in his place the Jets use both Jeff Cumberland and Konrad Reuland in the same minimal way. The tight ends have not scored for the Jets this year or even gained more than 33 yards in any game.

Stephen Hill opened the year with 89 yards and two scores but now has gone two weeks with nine targets and zero catches. Safe to drop your week one free agent grab. Santonio Holmes comes off his first big game but so far he has only mattered when facing weak division defenses. Against the Steelers he only produced three catches for 28 yards though he scored once because he used to live there way back when. Jeremy Kerley has two scores on the year and has been consistent with around 50 yards or so per week. Holmes and Kerley make up nearly all of the receiving talent for the Jets. That's not enough for the rest of the season.

The Jets face a defense that will shut down the run game and force Sanchez to throw. And that is just never a good ending for the Jets. Problem too is that the only weakness at all for the 49ers defense is against tight ends which the Jets just never use.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points NYJ 21 30 8 28 13 2
Preventing Fantasy Points SF 24 2 18 29 13 24

  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
QB Geno Smith, NYJ @MIA 40000020012 ***
Smith has rushing scores in two of his last three which have elevated his fantasy numbers to almost startable status. However, he threw for 29 yards--that's not a typo, just two digits, less than 90 feet of passing production--in the earlier meeting with Miami and it would take serious stones to trot him out in any self-respecting fantasy lineup.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB Chris Johnson, NYJ @MIA 10003200000 ***
Johnson rushed for 96 yards in Houston back in Week 2 and is coming off another 90-yard game last week. However, Shonn Greene also topped 90 yards on almost as many carries and also swiped a touchdown so temper your CJ?K expectations.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB Chris Ivory, NYJ @MIA 600000000 ****
Ivory has been the Jets' primary ball-carrier four straight games, resulting in one TD and a 109-yard effort last week. He should see more than the dozen carries he handled in the earlier meeting with Miami, and if he maintains the five yards per carry he averaged in that game (as well as last week) he should be a significant fantasy helper against a defense that served up 195 rushing yards to Buffalo last week.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Eric Decker, NYJ @MIA 0061101000 ***
Everybody got fed the last time these squads met--Demaryius Thomas 94 yards, Decker 133 & 1, Wes Welker 84 & 1--and there's no reason to expect much difference this time around. The only difference is that with Welker out Decker has seen a little more activity--hardly a bad thing when Peyton Manning is slinging the pigskin.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Jeremy Kerley, NYJ @MIA 004500000 ***
Kerley turned a team-high 11 targets last week into five catches for 70 yards; for the Jets passing attack, that passes for a monster game. Get your fantasy help elsewhere.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
TE Jeff Cumberland, NYJ @MIA 002201000 **
The Jets have one TE TD in the past five games, and with Cumberland and Kellen Winslow splitting the looks it's impossible to bank on either for fantasy help.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
TE Kellen Winslow, NYJ @MIA 002200000 ***
The Jets have one TE TD in the past five games, and with Winslow and Jeff Cumberland splitting the looks it's impossible to bank on either for fantasy help.
  Opp fgaFGMxpaXPM ConFac
K Nick Folk, NYJ @MIA 2211 ****
Folk was more effective earlier in the season, but over the past six games he's hit double-digits just once. That stretch included a three-point effort against Miami a month back; seems overly optimistic to look for much more this time around.

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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