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Predictions & Projections
David Dorey
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WEEK 5
2012
ARI at STL (THU) CHI at JAC MIA at CIN *TEN at MIN
ATL at WAS *CLE at NYG PHI at PIT *HOU at NYJ (MON)
BAL at KC *DEN at NE *SD at NO Bye:
*Updated BUF at SF GB at IND SEA at CAR DAL, DET, OAK, TB

Prediction: HOU 31, NYJ 13 (Line: HOU by 9)

Players to Watch: Mark Sanchez, Tim Tebow

Players Updated: Dustin Keller, Stephen Hill, Ben Tate

The 4-0 Texans are back on the road but still have not scored less than 27 points in any game. The 2-2 Jets may be .500 but are on the verge of complete armageddon according to the media who delights in such. This could be a trap game, but it would need to happen in an alternate universe and would not be broadcasted on NFL Sunday Ticket unless you purchased the HBO/Dual Reality Package.

Houston Texans
Homefield: Reliant Stadium
Grass
  Opp Score   Opp Score
1 MIA 30-10 10 @CHI -----
2 @JAC 27-7 11 JAC -----
3 @DEN 31-25 12 @DET -----
4 TEN 38-14 13 @TEN -----
5 @NYJ ----- 14 @NE -----
6 GB ----- 15 IND -----
7 BAL ----- 16 MIN -----
8 BYE ----- 17 @IND -----
9 BUF ----- ----- ----- -----
News | Statistics | Roster
HOU @ NYJ Rush Catch Pass
QB Ryan Fitzpatrick 10 230,2
RB Arian Foster 110,2 6-40
WR Keshawn Martin 2-20

Pregame Notes: Tough game in Denver but otherwise - this has been a cakewalk so far. Three wins were by 20+ points and the Houston defense has been only let up at the end of games to allow a little trash yardage and maybe a score. The passing offense under Matt Schaub has largely been mediocre in stats simply because they were not needed but in the one close game, he threw for 290 yards and four touchdowns in Denver. Schaub is only playing up to the level he needs to and with once again a premier rushing offense, he is just rarely that productive.

Arian Foster has scored in each game and never gained fewer than 79 rushing yards. His role as a receiver has been mostly limited but he makes that up with big rushing yards and touchdowns. Ben Tate is just a relief player and his two scores in the Jacksonville win along with his 74 rushing yards were just a one-time thing. Tate has produced under 30 total yards in all but one game. Foster remains an elite back with a heavy load.

The passing may not be prolific but Owen Daniels has caught a touchdown in both of the last two games and he has always been good for around 50 yards worth of production each week.

As so often happens, the tremendous success of both the rushing effort and the defense means that the minimal passing needs affect all receivers including Andre Johnson. He has two scores on the year but he is only averaging three catches for around 50 yards per game over the last three weeks. No doubt he will come back into play in upcoming weeks with the likes of the Packers and Ravens up next. But against the Jets? Could be another low effort from a guy you have to start regardless because of his potential every week.

No other receiver matters here - ever. The fantasy value has dwindled down to only Foster, Daniels in a pinch and Johnson with your fingers crossed.

The Jets started the season by giving up 169 rush yards to C.J. Spiller and three weeks later have yielded seven rushing touchdowns and well over 100 yards to runners from every opponent other than the Steelers. With the Jets losing Darrelle Revis and now Santonio Holmes, the disarray is ripe for a bulldozer job by the Texans.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points HOU 21 2 29 9 10 2
Preventing Fantasy Points NYJ 8 25 6 10 16 20

  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
QB Case Keenum, HOU JAC 20000018000 ***
At this point it's no longer a surprise that the Jags aren't the cupcake matchup many assume; Tony Romo in Week 10 is the last quarterback to throw multiple touchdowns against them, and not since Philip Rivers in Week 4 have they surrendered a 300-yard game. No reason to think Keenum's stat line gets well this week.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB Arian Foster, HOU JAC 13023200000 ***
Foster has seven touchdowns in seven career games against the Titans; that total includes four 100-yard rushing days as well. He's averaged 25 carries per game over the past three, producing 322 yards in the process. No reason to think he won't find similar success against the Jags this week.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB Alfred Blue, HOU JAC 301000000 **
If Arian Foster goes down with an injury, or if the Texans get ahead by so much they can start playing the backups, or if Foster just needs to share the load in what by necessity will be a run-first game plan for Houston... well, then, you're my boy, Blue!
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR DeAndre Hopkins, HOU JAC 004700000 ***
Reduced quarterback numbers trickle down to reduced receiver numbers, as the Texans haven't had a WR TD or a receiver top 80 yards in almost a month. That stretch includes a combined 10 WR catches (on 14 targets) against the Jags; tough to carve fantasy value out of such a small number, even though Hopkins has taken over as the Texan's WR1.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
TE Garrett Graham, HOU JAC 002200000 ***
Graham's been dinged up, leaving Ryan Griffin to get the targets... except when CJ Fiedorowicz steals the touchdowns. It's a cluster, with not nearly enough production to float one boat let alone three.
  Opp fgaFGMxpaXPM ConFac
K Randy Bullock, HOU JAC 1144 ***
Bullock has at least nine points in three of his last four, including Week 14 in Jacksonville. Balance the motivation of a Houston squad still alive for the postseason with the issues of a backup-to-the-backup quarterback and you should still get a solid kicker outing 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 0-34 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 HOU Rush Catch Pass
QB Michael Vick 40 240,2
RB Chris Johnson 60 3-20
RB Bilal Powell 30 4-30
WR Eric Decker 6-80
WR T.J. Graham 2-30
WR Percy Harvin 20 7-80,1
WR Jeremy Kerley 5-60,1
PK Nick Folk 1 FG 1 XP

Pregame Notes: Few teams are 2-2 and have as much bad press as the Jets but then again, losing 0-34 at home to anyone is going to draw negative attention. Plus losing Santonio Holmes who was not only marginally productive, he was clearly the best weapon they had. Plus we have the obligatory "What about Tebow>" side story that only gets stronger with every bad game by Mark Sanchez.

There are even rumors that the owner is lobbying for Tim Tebow to start.

Since the season opener, Sanchez has only thrown two touchdowns and twice failed to reach 140 pass yards. That couples with a horrible rushing attack. In the meltdown against the 49ers, Sanchez only completed 13 of 29 passes for 103 yards and one interception. He had a nice throw to Holmes who crumpled untouched in pain while handing the ball to a defender who scored a touchdown. It kind of is not Sanchez fault.

He has no help.

Holmes is gone for the season with a Lis Franc injury. Stephen Hill has been nursing a hamstring strain. Patrick Turner was cut. Jeremy Kerley has scored twice this year and been as close to a productive wideout as it gets for the Jets but he is no #1 guy on any other team. Tim Tebow has one pass and that was last week when he connected with Dedrick Epps who got busted in the knee and was released on Monday. Dustin Keller has been gone since week one with a hamstring injury. Last year there were veterans like Plaxico Burress, Derrick Mason and Holmes. Guys who at least once upon a time were productive. Now it is Jeremy Kerley and Chaz Schilens as the starting receivers? Joe McKnight was changed to a cornerback last week, did poorly on his few plays and is back to being just more dead space on the running back depth chart.

It would make some sense to use Tebow in a rush heavy attack only there are no running backs on the roster that we know of. Shonn Greene may have finally wore out his welcome after four years of falling forward and trying to roll. HC Rex Ryan said he would consider other runners but then gave Greene 11 carries (34 yards) and Bilal Powell only ran four times (11 yards). There are only two real answers here.

1. Start Jonathan Grimes at running back. Yes, he comes from the HOU practice squad and will probably suck as much as Greene and Powell but we don't know that for sure yet. Or maybe Lex Hilliard who just signed.

2. Start Tebow and just let him run it every play. The wins won't likely come but at least the media finally gets what they want.

This will be an interesting week to see how the Jets respond. They are 2-2. But they look like they may be 2-14 at the end.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points NYJ 27 31 19 28 25 6
Preventing Fantasy Points HOU 2 14 2 6 3 7

  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
QB Geno Smith, NYJ @MIA 20000016001 **
How Smith kept his job after 65 yards and no TDs against the Dolphins in the earlier meeting is one of life's great mysteries. His season has been largely devoid of fantasy help; no reason to think he breaks ranks here.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB Chris Ivory, NYJ @MIA 5001100000 ***
When Geno Smith is your quarterback, running the ball--a lot--is the offensive game plan of choice. Ivory carried 16 times for 62 yards in the earlier meeting with Miami; he's bound to see double-digit totes again, though he may wind up playing second-fiddle to Chris Johnson like he did the last time these teams met.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB Chris Johnson, NYJ @MIA 4002100000 ***
Handing the ball to CJ?K 10-plus times a game is preferable to having Geno Smith throw on those plays, so expect Johnson to see double-digit touches for the fifth straight game; he's averaging around 65 yards per game, so if that helps your fantasy bottom line go ahead and give him a spin.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Eric Decker, NYJ @MIA 005500000 ***
Jets wideouts accounted for 26 receiving yards the last time they faced Miami. Decker's actually been decent since then with games of 89 and 100 yards, but banking on the Jets' passing game for productivity is a recipe for disaster regardless of opponent.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Jeremy Kerley, NYJ @MIA 003200000 ***
The Jets can barely keep a WR1 satiated with stats; Kerley's a WR3 who could bump up to WR2 status if Percy Harvin can't play, but neither role gets him onto your fantasy radar.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
TE Jace Amaro, NYJ @MIA 002100000 ***
Jeff Cumberland has seen more action while Amaro battles injuries and adjustment to the NFL. He has the potential to be a helpful fantasy player--just not this week.
  Opp fgaFGMxpaXPM ConFac
K Nick Folk, NYJ @MIA 3300 ***
Foles has multiple treys in three of his last four, including two in the earlier meeting with Miami. You trust Geno to get the Jets close, go ahead and rely on Folk for your fantasy squad.

WEEK 5
2012
ARI at STL (THU) CHI at JAC MIA at CIN *TEN at MIN
ATL at WAS *CLE at NYG PHI at PIT *HOU at NYJ (MON)
BAL at KC *DEN at NE *SD at NO Bye:
*Updated BUF at SF GB at IND SEA at CAR DAL, DET, OAK, TB

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