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: WAS 24, TB 20 (Line: TB by 3)

Players to Watch: Fred Davis

Players Updated: Pierre Garcon

The 1-2 Redskins have been a boon to the fantasy world with 59+ total points in each of their games. The 1-2 Buccaneers have followed the same pattern as the Skins only without all those points. One of these teams will have lost three games in a row which is just about spinning out of control. With the way both teams have played, this is a coin flip game that may end up with 25 total points or 75 total points.

Washington Redskins
Homefield: FedEx Field
Grass
  Opp Score   Opp Score
1 @NO 40-32 10 BYE -----
2 @STL 28-31 11 PHI -----
3 CIN 31-38 12 @DAL -----
4 @TB ----- 13 NYG -----
5 ATL ----- 14 BAL -----
6 MIN ----- 15 @CLE -----
7 @NYG ----- 16 @PHI -----
8 @PIT ----- 17 DAL -----
9 CAR ----- ----- ----- -----
News | Statistics | Roster
WAS @ TB Rush Catch Pass
QB Robert Griffin III 30,1 270,2
RB Alfred Morris 70
WR Pierre Garcon
WR Leonard Hankerson 6-90,1
WR DeSean Jackson 4-70
WR Santana Moss 3-40
WR Andre Roberts 4-50

Pregame Notes: That win in week one is a little less impressive now that the Saints are 0-3 but losing to the Rams and the Bengals are troublesome since no one knew the Rams had an offense. You cannot fault the Skins offense that has posted 28 points or more in every game. But the Redskins have allowed 101 points and cannot stop the bleeding. The Rams and the Bengals?

Robert Griffin III had been more effective as a runner than a passer in recent games though he has always thrown for at least one touchdown per game and never gained fewer than 206 passing yards. Griffin has three rushing touchdowns on the season and ran for over 80 yards in the last two losses.

Alfred Morris still has fantasy value as the primary back but slipped to 78 yards on 17 runs last week with one touchdown. Morris has not caught any passes so far. What works in his favor this week is that Evan Royster has a strained patellar tendon and Roy Helu has turf toe so Morris should get no less of a load and possibly all the carries this week.

Pierre Garcon remains out with his foot injury and HC Mike Shanahan is not interested in clearing up when Garcon will be back. I will assume he is out until he gets a full practice. Leonard Hankerson has earned a starting role and has been the most productive wide receiver for the last two weeks. Aldrick Robinson has faded to only one catch last Sunday and Santana Moss has been little used. The only development here is that Fred Davis was finally a big part of the passing equation when he caught seven passes for 90 yards. With Garcon out, Davis should continue to be the main target for Griffin.

How this game plays out will be interesting since Cam Newton passed for 303 yards there in the season opener and yet had no rushing success. Eli Manning passed for 510 yards and three scores but then Tony Romo was unable to score on the Buccaneers. The Bucs defense has been good against the run and horrible against the pass - for the most part.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points WAS 1 14 12 19 12 3
Preventing Fantasy Points TB 22 6 31 9 25 11

  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
QB Robert Griffin III, WAS PHI 30000026021 ***
If there were any team Jay Gruden were forced to play RG3 against, the Eagles might be the best possible option. In four career meetings RG3 has thrown multiple TDs four times, a total of 10 touchdowns against four INTs, averaging 272 yards per game with another 40 rushing yards per game to boot. You'd take those numbers from RG3, right? He wasn't that far off last week against the Giants with 236 & 1 plus 46 rushing, and with Philly as the second-most fantasy friendly defense against quarterbacks an uptick is to be expected. RG3 is playing for somebody's job, be it in DC or elsewhere, and the Eagles are a perfect foil for him to make some noise.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB Alfred Morris, WAS PHI 8001100000 ***
The Redskins have gotten away from running Morris 20 times a game, perhaps because they've dropped the last three games by an average of 18 points per game. He carried 23 times for 77 yards in the earlier meeting with Philly and you have to think the game plan calls for heavy doses of Alf. As an added bonus, any read options carry the threat of an RG3 run, which in the past has opened lanes for Morris. Think of those previous game numbers as a baseline, with room to move upwards.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR DeSean Jackson, WAS PHI 005901000 **
You think DJax is motivated? Now even his own coach is talking smack about him. He put up 117 and a touch on the Eagles in the earlier meeting, and with RG3 throwing deep he should get a few extra chances to put the torch to his former squad. Revenge is a dish best served in the fantasy bowl.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Pierre Garcon, WAS PHI 005701000 **
Garcon seems to be more of a Colt McCoy favorite than an RG3 favorite, though after seeing what Garcon did to the Eagles back in Week 3 (11-138-1) maybe he'll reconsider. It's a risk, as Garcon has been a bit player most of the season, but there's some upside if RG3 is willing to reacquaint himself with Pierre.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
TE Jordan Reed, WAS PHI 005500000 ***
Philly has allowed only one TE TD on the year, but two tight ends have topped 100 yards and another two--including Niles Paul back in Week 3, before Reed was back from injury--topped 65 yards. He'd be more of a yardage play than a TD play, but there's some upside to Reed this week.
  Opp fgaFGMxpaXPM ConFac
K Kai Forbath, WAS PHI 2111 ***
Blame RG3: With other quarterbacks Forbath is averaging better than seven points per game; in games in which RG3 took the bulk of the snaps, he's averaging 4.6. He tallied 10 for the Kirk Cousins-led Redskins against Philly earlier this year, but don't get your hopes up for the rematch.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Homefield: Raymond James Stadium
Grass
  Opp Score   Opp Score
1 CAR 16-10 10 SD -----
2 @NYG 34-41 11 @CAR -----
3 @DAL 10-16 12 ATL -----
4 WAS ----- 13 @DEN -----
5 BYE ----- 14 PHI -----
6 KC ----- 15 @NO -----
7 NO ----- 16 STL -----
8 @MIN ----- 17 @ATL -----
9 @OAK ----- ----- ----- -----
News | Statistics | Roster
vs Rush Catch Pass
RB Doug Martin 80 3-20
WR Vincent Jackson 7-110,1
TE Brandon Myers 5-50,1

Pregame Notes: The Buccaneers should see a spike in scoring this week since they cannot get much lower. In Dallas they were held to only one touchdown and Josh Freeman has two games with fewer than 140 passing yards. But he has scored at least once each week. Freeman scored four times against three interceptions and has almost no rushing yardage this year.

Doug Martin is struggling behind a poor offensive line and currently has rushed for 214 yards on 63 carries for only a 3.4 yard average. But he is often met at the line by defenders and has looked sharp if only in brief moments when he breaks free. Martin has only a marginal role as a receiver since the Buccaneers offense just do not employ backs as pass catchers much.

The tight end spot has not evaporated with Dallas Clark gaining no yardage on his one catch against the Cowboys. Luke Stocker scored in Dallas but it was his only catch of the year.

After recording a touchdown in each of his first two games, Mike Williams was blanketed by the Cowboys as was Vincent Jackson who had just one catch in that game after gaining 128 yards and a touchdown in New York. Martin has the running back spot locked up but has not been able to make it very productive yet. The receivers still revolve almost entirely around Jackson and Williams.

The Skins have been good against the run and bad against the pass. This is a good chance for Freeman to get in some better yardage and scoring. The Skins have been allowing over 30 points per opponent but that's hard to expect from an offense that has sputtered twice this year. This week should be the start of a very nice stretch of an easy schedule, at least for the passing game.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points TB 31 23 28 30 18 5
Preventing Fantasy Points WAS 32 8 32 30 18 8

  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
QB Josh McCown, TB GB 0000025021 ***
Green Bay's defense is nothing special unless they've got you down by a couple touchdowns and force you to be one-dimensional. On the road they've been less dominant, which should allow the Bucs to remain multifaceted and keep McCown from playing the role of sitting duck in the pocket. He had some success against Green Bay last year as a bear, but his upside feels like two TDs and something in the mid-200s; you'll want more during championship week.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB Doug Martin, TB GB 400000000 ***
We've seen flashes of the Martin of old--not enough to dust him off for a fantasy start, but enough to plant a seed in the backs of minds heading into next year. Splitting touches with Charles Sims takes a bite out of his fantasy potential as well; consider him a placeholder for now.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB Charles Sims, TB GB 1003300000 ***
Sims could see extended work as a pass-catcher if the Packers do in fact get out to a big lead and force the Bucs to throw, so there's some fantasy value here for PPR leaguers. Aside from that... not much.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Mike Evans, TB GB 005802000 ***
Big-bodied receivers--Julio Jones (259 & 1), Brandon LaFell (2 TDs), Jordan Matthews (107 &1), Brandon Marshall (112 & 1), and more--have success against the Packers' secondary. And Evans is plenty big-bodied--not to mention heavily targeted and a red-zone monster. Have to love his opportunity here.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Vincent Jackson, TB GB 005900000 ***
Green Bay has noticeable difficulty handling larger receivers--like Jackson, for example, who has 239 yards and four touchdowns in two career meetings with the Packers. That trend has continued this season through the likes of Calvin Johnson, Brandon Marshall, Alshon Jeffery, Kelvin Benjamin and even Jordan Matthews and Brandon LaFell. So while VJax still plays second fiddle to Mike Evans (another big WR), he should have ample opportunity to build a fantasy portfolio of his own this week.
  Opp fgaFGMxpaXPM ConFac
K Patrick Murray, TB GB 1122 ***
Murray's next game with double-digit points will be his first. No reason to expect it to happen 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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