FANTASY FOOTBALL IN-SEASON FEATURES

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: MIA 20, CIN 27 (Line: CIN by 4.5)

Players to Watch: Brain Hartline

The 1-3 Dolphins are on a two game losing streak though they gave the Cardinals all they could handle last week. The 3-1 Bengals have been on a roll since the season opening loss in Baltimore. Once again, the Bengals are playing better than we expected and the Dolphins are good but not good enough.

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 21-24 13 NE -----
5 @CIN ----- 14 @SF -----
6 STL ----- 15 JAC -----
7 BYE ----- 16 BUF -----
8 @NYJ ----- 17 @NE -----
9 @IND ----- ----- ----- -----
News | Statistics | Roster
MIA @ CIN Rush Catch Pass
QB Ryan Tannehill 220,1
RB Brandon Bolden 20
RB Frank Gore 110,2 1-10
WR Danny Amendola 6-80,1

Pregame Notes: Losing the last two games by just three points means the Dolphins are improving but are limited by their defense that has allowed 23 points or more in three games this year. This is not a "catch up" sort of offense despite Ryan Tannehill throwing for 431 yards in Arizona. His previous best was only 219 yards and he still only managed to score once. So far Tannehill has two touchdowns against six interceptions but at least is gaining yardage in chunks with the wide receivers.

Reggie Bush was active last week and gained 67 yards on 17 runs in Arizona. But he was never used as a receiver and was not overused in his first game since the knee sprain. He left the game without any issues and should be 100% this week. Not only are both Lamar Miller and Daniel Thomas splitting the relief work, but the Fins allowed Jorvorskie Lane to punch in the short touchdown for the second week in a row. Hopefully that goes away with Bush healthy again.

No matter that there were 431 pass yards in Arizona, Anthony Fasano still is held to fewer than 50 yards every week and has not fantasy merit.

The big story last week was Brian Hartline being thrown 19 passes for 12 catches and 253 yards including the 80-yard touchdown. That makes two of the last three weeks that Hartline ended with nine carries or more. And the problem is that he sandwiched those monster games with a one catch effort against the Jets. Opponents can game plan Hartline away but if they do not he has made them pay. Davone Bess also caught seven passes for 123 yards in that game but Hartline's 80-yard score has been the only touchdown by any wideout this year. That's two games by Hartline and one by Bess that were impressive and nothing else in four weeks. Cover the two and not much is going to happen. For that matter, cover Hartline and take your chances. This offense only has two passing touchdowns this year. What Hartline can do this week will help define the Miami passing game.

The Bengals are weaker on defense than most 3-1 teams but facing CLE, WAS and JAC has helped. All teams have thrown at least one score on them and most have at least some rushing success against them as well. But the passing is not going to be good enough here to get the win.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points MIA 26 3 21 27 27 16
Preventing Fantasy Points CIN 24 26 9 24 17 26

  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
QB Ryan Tannehill, MIA @NYJ 0000024021 ***
The Jets looked like the Jags in Week 1 against Detroit. While that isn't exactly reflective of their true outlook, half of it is good enough to keep Tannehill in the doldrums section of fantasy passers.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB Kenyan Drake, MIA @NYJ 5004300000 ***
New York was a top-10 matchup for exploitation in both PPR and non- scoring systems in 2017. This defense held Detroit's sad excuse for a running game to 13-34-0 and 8-35-0 in Week 1. Drake should be a low-end RB2 or quality flex option.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB Frank Gore, MIA @NYJ 4001100000 ***
It is tough to gauge how capable New York is at limiting running backs. Detroit isn't exactly a fair litmus test. The Lions ran it only 13 times but connected on eight passes for 35 yards to RBs. Gore is a peripheral consideration.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Danny Amendola, MIA @NYJ 007601000 ***
The Jets have done wonders to upgrade its defense, but the play of Matthew Stafford was the bigger factor in New York's success last week from a turnover perspective. This unit still allowed 19 catches for 253 yards and a touchdown to Lions receivers, good for the fifth-most points in PPR from Week 1. Amendola could be a sly fantasy start for gamers looking to fill a flex slot.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Kenny Stills, MIA @NYJ 004601000 ***
Miami faces a New York defense that surrendered 253 yards (4th most) and a score to Lions wideouts last week on 19 catches (3rd most). Stills' big-play nature could serve him well in this matchup. He's a WR3 with potential for more.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR DeVante Parker, MIA @NYJ 003400000 *
Parker (finger) remains uncertain for Week 2.

Update: After missing Week 1, Parker was a full participant Thursday and Friday. He's expected to dress but should be kept in reserve until we see more of his ability to catch with a broken digit.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
TE Mike Gesicki, MIA @NYJ 002200000 ***
The promising rookie belongs no where near fantasy lineups at this time. There are too many other safer, more productive choices to be started.
  Opp fgaFGMxpaXPM ConFac
K Jason Sanders, MIA @NYJ 1122 ***
Despite Sanders being the No. 12 kicker last week, there isn't a viable reason to trade in your current option just yet. The matchup is less than ideal, as well, with the Jets being the ninth-strongest unit last year against kickers and rock-solid vs. Detroit in Week 1.

Cincinnati Bengals
Homefield: Paul Brown Stadium
FieldTurf
  Opp Score   Opp Score
1 @BAL 13-44 10 NYG -----
2 CLE 34-27 11 @KC -----
3 @WAS 38-31 12 OAK -----
4 @JAC 27-10 13 @SD -----
5 MIA ----- 14 DAL -----
6 @CLE ----- 15 @PHI -----
7 PIT ----- 16 @PIT -----
8 BYE ----- 17 BAL -----
9 DEN ----- ----- ----- -----
News | Statistics | Roster
CIN vs MIA Rush Catch Pass
QB Andy Dalton 10 300,3
WR A.J. Green 7-120,2

Pregame Notes: The Bengals finish three road games in the first four weeks with a 3-1 record but the schedule is not getting much better anytime soon. The defense has been a problem most weeks but at least Andy Dalton has been able to produce three scores each week and remain ahead on the scoreboard. He has thrown for over 300 yards twice and rushed in a touchdown last week in Jacksonville.

The rushing game here remains just as lackluster as it was with Cedric Benson. BenJarvus Green-Ellis rarely has a role as a receiver and he has only gained 286 yards on 82 runs. That's a 3.5 yard per carry average and a moderate fantasy output every week. He's not winning anyone games but he is not why you lose either. Just like Benson before him, the Bengals have an average run game that just lacks any sparks or big performances. Green-Ellis gets almost all the action here. It just never matters that much.

Jermaine Gresham is the tight end version of Green-Ellis. He has one score, he always has at least 30 yards but never more than 64. Middle of the road for a tight end and worthy only of filling in for a bye week player.

Dalton continues to ignite an improving set of receivers. A.J. Green scored in each of the last three games and has been good for six or seven catches per week. The last two weeks produced 183 yards against the Redskins and 117 yards in Jacksonville. He is a strong play and currently the #1 wideout in most fantasy leagues. But he is not alone. Armon Binns scored once and was catching about four passes per game until being blanked last week. Andrew Hawkins is making the slot mean something. He has two touchdowns on the year and produces 50 or 60 yards in almost every game. He adds a dangerous element that can break a long gainer on any play.

This offense has a decent rushing game that supports a good passer in Dalton. Green is the #1 fantasy wideout because teams cannot devote too much against him without paying a price from the other receivers. This week they go against a Miami defense that has allowed over 300 passing yards to the last three opponents and all teams score at least once against them via the pass. The rushing defense is actually top notch and going against a mediocre run offense.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points CIN 10 26 1 21 12 15
Preventing Fantasy Points MIA 20 15 27 15 24 23

  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
QB Andy Dalton, CIN BAL 0000021010 ***
It was a tale of two games for Dalton vs. the 2017 Ravens. He was picked four times and held out of the end zone in Week 1, tossing a contrasting three TDs and no picks in the season finale. This game is on a short week, so be prepared for anything.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB Joe Mixon, CIN BAL 5016400000 ***
The Ravens gave up just 6.5 PPR points in Week 1 to the Bills' backfield. Some of that was due to how pathetic the Buffalo's quarterback play was and the offensive line reconstruction for the worse. Mixon barely played in the opener last year vs. the Ravens, though he went for 96 yards on 18 carries.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR A.J. Green, CIN BAL 005700000 ***
The 2017 Ravens held a struggling Bengals to zero points in the opener, with Green going 5-74-0 on 10 targets. He saw a matching 10 looks in the finale but was shutdown to the tune of two for 17. He's a risk-reward start this week but belongs in all conventional lineups.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR John Ross, CIN BAL 003300000 ***
Despite seeing an increase in playing time, Ross is merely a coin flip any week because of his home run skills. He is far from the epitome of consistency. Find a better gamble in Week 2.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Tyler Boyd, CIN BAL 003300000 ***
Boyd doesn't see enough action to matter in fantasy and belongs on your bench or even waiver wire.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
TE Tyler Eifert, CIN BAL 004401000 ***
Eifert was good for a whole 1.4 PPR points in his lone 2017 meeting with the Ravens. He logged a 5-68-1 line in the Week 12 game from the '16 campaign. Baltimore shutout Charles Clay last week but permitted 3-42-0 to other Buffalo tight ends.
  Opp fgaFGMxpaXPM ConFac
K Randy Bullock, CIN BAL 1122 ***
Baltimore shut out the Bengals in last year's opener, and Bullock managed seven points in the finale. The veteran kicker registered 10 fantasy points in Week 1.

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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