Predictions & Projections
David Dorey
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BUF at ARI *GB at HOU *NE at SEA *DEN at SD (MON)
*CIN at CLE *IND at NYJ *NYG at SF Bye:
*Updated DAL at BAL *KC at TB OAK at ATL CAR, CHI, JAC, NO

Prediction: CIN 20, CLE 23 (Line: CIN by 2.5)

Updated Players: Jordan Norwood

This is a repeat game. The 3-2 Bengals already won 34-27 at home in week two. The difference this time is the venue and the fact that all the 0-5 Browns rookies are a month more experienced. The Bengals have won seven of the last eight but this is going to be the Browns best chance to get a win until week 14 unless they get the obligatory trap game.

Cincinnati Bengals
Homefield: Paul Brown Stadium
  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 13-17 14 DAL -----
6 @CLE ----- 15 @PHI -----
7 PIT ----- 16 @PIT -----
8 BYE ----- 17 BAL -----
9 DEN ----- ----- ----- -----
News | Statistics | Roster
CIN @ CLE Rush Catch Pass
QB Andy Dalton 10 280,2
WR A.J. Green 5-80,1
WR Greg Little 2-20
TE Jermaine Gresham 4-40
PK Mike Nugent 2 FG 2 XP

Pregame Notes: The Bengals have played inconsistently at best this year and come off a home loss to the Dolphins which should have been one of the softer games of the year. The Bengals have to resist the urge to look past this to the Steelers match-up in week seven because the Browns came within one touchdown of tying in Cincinnati.

Andy Dalton has also calmed down from his initial 300 yard, three touchdown games in weeks two and three. Against the Jaguars he only threw for 244 yards and two scores and then 234 yards with one touchdown against the Dolphins. Dalton passed for 318 yards and three touchdowns in the first meeting in Cincy.

BenJarvus Green-Ellis has been a fantasy frustration after starting out with 91 rushing yards on 18 runs and scoring once on the Ravens. Since then he has averaged less than three yards per carry and ran for only 75 yards on 21 runs at home against the Browns. Bernard Scott is gone now and that may help BGE a little but Scott was only a very minor player anyway. The lack of a decent rushing effort still plagues the Bengals.

Jermaine Gresham has been solid each week with around five catches but he only has one touchdown on the season and turned in just four catches for 37 yards in the previous Browns match-up.

A.J. Green is on a four game scoring spree with solid yardage and receptions in each. That started against the Browns when he caught seven passes for 58 yards and one score. Oddly his best two games and only ones over 70 yards were both on the road. Andrew Hawkins also scored in week two with just two catches for 56 yards and one very impressive scamper through the defense for a touchdown. But these last two weeks, Hawkins has only produced less than 50 yards per week with no scores. Armon Binns and Brandon Tate are both non-factors.

It is easy enough to expect week two to repeat and the Browns come off a thrashing in New York. But this one is at home for the Browns and one of the best chances for them to finally get a win. The Bengals cannot take this one lightly.

Gaining Fantasy Points CIN 13 27 2 21 14 16
Preventing Fantasy Points CLE 27 24 31 3 13 26

QB Andy Dalton, CIN @IND 0000024011 ***
If this goes according to plan Dalton won't throw enough to put up big fantasy numbers; the Bengals would like to keep him under 30 attempts for the game. However, this could very well turn into a shootout with Andrew Luck, in which case Dalton tops 30 attempts--and, subsequently, 300 yards. He's a solid play with upside, so he's definitely a viable fantasy option.
RB Giovani Bernard, CIN @IND 7014300000 ***
Lots to like about Gio every week, but specifically this week: every back with double-digit carries against the Colts has reached the end zone, plus no team has given up more receiving scores to RBs than Indy. Regardless of which team imposes its will this week--a run-heavy Hue Jackson game plan or a Luck/Dalton shootout--Gio will get you fantasy value.
RB Jeremy Hill, CIN @IND 3004200000 ***
Hill isn't necessarily the full-time goal line back in Cincy, but he'll see enough touches that he's a decent bet to register fantasy value against an Indy defense that's allowed RB TDs in five of six games. Plus, who wouldn't want to see another Icky Shuffle?
WR Brandon Tate, CIN @IND 004401000 **
Tate and Dane Sanzenbacher are handling wingman roles with Cincy's receiver rotation jumbled by injuries. There's fantasy value if this turns into a Luck/Dalton shootout; otherwise Tate is a secondary option on what the Bengals hopes is a run-heavy team this week.
WR Mohamed Sanu, CIN @IND 005700000 ****
Sanu has capably slid into the WR1 slot in Cincy, and with AJ Green and Marvin Jones still on hiatus he'll be Andy Dalton's primary weapon should this turn into a shootout with Andrew Luck. Even if the Bengals control the ball Sanu will get his opportunities, making him the best fantasy play among Cincy receivers.
TE Jermaine Gresham, CIN @IND 004500000 **
Last week's 6-68 was Gresham's most prolific pass-catching outing since the middle of the 2012 season. The Colts have allowed four tight ends to top 70 yards against them this year, so given that volume Gresham is a sneaky helpful fantasy play this week.
  Opp fgaFGMxpaXPM ConFac
K Mike Nugent, CIN @IND 2222 ****
On the heels of a missed game-winning chip shot, Nugent goes on the road to face a Colts team that's allowing roughly five points per game to opposing kickers over the past month. You can probably do better fantasy-wise.

Cleveland Browns
Homefield: Cleveland Stadium
  Opp Score   Opp Score
1 PHI 16-17 10 BYE -----
2 @CIN 27-34 11 @DAL -----
3 BUF 14-24 12 PIT -----
4 @BAL 16-23 13 @OAK -----
5 @NYG 27-41 14 KC -----
6 CIN ----- 15 WAS -----
7 @IND ----- 16 @DEN -----
8 SD ----- 17 @PIT -----
9 BAL ----- ----- ----- -----
News | Statistics | Roster
vs Rush Catch Pass
RB Ben Tate
WR Miles Austin 6-60,1
WR Josh Gordon 3-50,1
WR Andrew Hawkins 3-50,1
TE Jordan Cameron 3-40

Pregame Notes: The strain of losing is no fun but the Browns are pretty much accustomed to it anyway. They have been in every game this year at least for a while before it gets irretrievably out of reach. Brandon Weeden has already proven a big upgrade by throwing for around 300 yards three times this year including 322 yards and two scores in Cincinnati using virtually no NFL-quality receivers. Weeden has just five scores against nine interceptions but had no turnovers in the previous meeting with the Bengals

Trent Richardson still has a career best mark of 109 rushing yards on 19 runs when he played in Cincy and he scored twice in that game. Richardson has scored at least once in each of the last four games and adds five or six receptions as well. His season high in carries has been 19 which again came when facing the Bengals. His yardage has been nothing spectacular so far but he has always scored and his dual role helps support his fantasy value.

The tight ends are little used and never score for the Browns. Benjamin Watson has been more productive lately though just last week ended with only one catch in New York. Jordan Cameron had a touchdown there called back on a penalty and has been little used otherwise. Weeden occasionally relies on them but a lack of scoring or consistent use means no real fantasy value here.

Greg Little had his only touchdown on the year with his five receptions for 57 yards in Cincy but has since mostly been dropping passes and frustrating Weeden. Little has the ability to get open and the speed to do some damage. It is just that whole "while holding the ball" thing that has been a problem. Mohamed Massaquoi had the big game of 90 yards in the last meeting with the Bengals but has since been out with a hamstring strain. Jordan Norwood is getting more playing time from the slot and turned in nine catches for 81 yards versus the Giants. Just as important - Norwood caught all nine of his passes.

The Bengals defense let the Browns score 27 points in Cincy. The receivers are less certain for the Bengals but Richardson goes against a defense that has allowed five different runners to score on them - including Richardson... twice.

Gaining Fantasy Points CLE 26 10 23 23 15 12
Preventing Fantasy Points CIN 19 27 5 21 16 28

QB Brian Hoyer, CLE @JAC 0000028020 ***
It's not the blank fantasy slate you might think, as the Jaguars have given up only one passing score the past two games combined and Hoyer has just one multiple-TD effort on the year. Plus, if the Browns run the ball 35-plus times like they have the past two weeks Hoyer simply won't have the opportunity to put up gaudy fantasy stats.
RB Ben Tate, CLE @JAC 8011100000 ****
The Jags haven't allowed a 100-yard rusher all year and have given up just one RB TD in the past four games. However, no opponent in that span has committed to the run like Cleveland does--35-plus rushing attempts each of the past two games. The last two teams to rush more than 30 times against Jacksonville produced 145 & 1 and 151 & 3; with Tate claiming the biggest chunk of Cleveland's backfield productivity he's in line for a very nice outing this week.
RB Isaiah Crowell, CLE @JAC 300000000 ***
Crowell was more effective than Ben Tate in fewer touches last week. And while we're not anticipating a change of the guard--even though it may be warranted--there should be enough rushing production against Jacksonville this week for Crowell to at least warrant fringe fantasy consideration.
WR Travis Benjamin, CLE @JAC 003501000 **
Sans Josh Gordon there's no real WR1 in Cleveland. Andrew Hawkins may be the volume guy but Benjamin is the most frequent visitor to the end zone. That may be a tough task to accomplish this week, as only four wideouts have scored on the Jags this year. More likely this is a run-heavy game plan for Cleveland with limited opportunities for the passing game to put up fantasy numbers; plan accordingly.
WR Miles Austin, CLE @JAC 003400000 ***
A secondary target with a somewhat favorable matchup in a game plan likely to be heavy on the rushing; you can find a better fantasy option elsewhere.
WR Andrew Hawkins, CLE @JAC 004400000 ***
A dozen wideouts have topped 50 yards against Jacksonville, so the Browns' volume guy isn't a bad PPR play this week. However, only four WRs have reached the end zone against the Jags, so Hawkins' fantasy upside is limited.
TE Jordan Cameron, CLE @JAC 005601000 ****
Cameron looked plenty healthy on his long TD grab last week, and his fantasy stat line should get healthy as well with this matchup against a Jacksonville defense that's allowed five TE TDs already this season.
  Opp fgaFGMxpaXPM ConFac
K Billy Cundiff, CLE @JAC 2233 ***
Only once all year have the Jags not allowed an opposing kicker to tally ten or more points. It's a threshold Cundiff has yet to cross; bet on that to change this week.

BUF at ARI *GB at HOU *NE at SEA *DEN at SD (MON)
*CIN at CLE *IND at NYJ *NYG at SF Bye:
*Updated DAL at BAL *KC at TB OAK at ATL CAR, CHI, JAC, NO

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