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: MIN 20, WAS 23 (Line: WAS by 2.5)

Players Updated: Percy Harvin, Jerome Simpson, Adrian Peterson

Players to Watch: Fred Davis

The 4-1 Vikings are on a three game winning streak that started with their surprise trap win over the 49ers but are only 1-1 on the road and lost in Indianapolis. The 2-3 Redskins are 0-2 at home and looking to crawl out of the NFC cellar. The Vikings have been on a nice run of wins but the home town Redskins have to pull together here or start to write off the season.

The Vikes won 33-26 at Washington last year.

Minnesota Vikings
Homefield: Metrodome
  Opp Score   Opp Score
1 JAC 26-23 ot 10 DET -----
2 @IND 20-23 11 BYE -----
3 SF 24-13 12 @CHI -----
4 @DET 20-13 13 @GB -----
5 TEN 30-7 14 CHI -----
6 @WAS ----- 15 @STL -----
7 ARI ----- 16 @HOU -----
8 TB ----- 17 GB -----
9 @SEA ----- ----- ----- -----
News | Statistics | Roster
vs Rush Catch Pass
RB Adrian Peterson 80 3-20
WR Mike Wallace 5-80,1
TE Kyle Rudolph 6-60,1
PK Blair Walsh 2 FG 2 XP

Pregame Notes: The Vikings have their own brand of "Triplets" between Adrian Peterson, Percy Harvin and Christian Ponder but it may be a bit early to consider the quarterback as a major difference maker quite yet. He has scored twice in three of his games but was blanked in the other two. His string of no interceptions ended against the Titans of all teams and he threw two once he saw how easy it was. Ponder gets a crack at a big game this week thanks to facing the Skins secondary but will likely be back to just one wideout in Harvin because Jerome Simpson may not play.

Percy Harvin has helped carry this team with productive games in every week other than the last road game and he finally scored when the Titans visited last week. He's adding a couple of runs per week and usually coming up with eight or nine catches in most games. Going against the worst secondary in the league should only make that even better.

Jerome Simpson is having problems with his back and never made a catch against the Titans. He is being checked out this week and may not suit up. Until they figure out what is causing the weakness and numbness in his lower leg, he's not going to be productive even if he plays. Problem here is that there are no other wideouts of any note. Devin Aromashodu will step up but that meant nothing before Simpson could play. Michael Jenkins also figures in but only for a couple of catches if that. Harvin has been a trooper to be sure with 38 catches on the year already but he cannot do it all.

Kyle Rudolph adds the occasional touchdown catch here but still has not produced more than 36 yards in a game since the season opener.

Adrian Peterson is a medical marvel to be sure. And he is gaining 4.4 yards per carry but has only one 100 yard rushing game and has not scored since week one. Peterson has been solid with around 80 rush yards per week and does supplement his production with a couple of catches as well. If he would find the end zone any time soon would make a big difference. He is certainly good with yardage but so far never great and scoreless for the last four games.

The Skins have never allowed fewer than 300 passing yards per opponent and that benefits the wideouts and tight ends with equal blessings. The run has been mostly stuffed by the Skins who have allowed just three rushing scores and yet never more than 83 rushing yards to any runner. As always with the Skins, this will be all about throwing the ball and taking advantage of the weak secondary.

Gaining Fantasy Points MIN 22 20 18 17 4 10
Preventing Fantasy Points WAS 30 9 32 31 21 2

Washington Redskins
Homefield: FedEx Field
  Opp Score   Opp Score
1 @NO 40-32 10 BYE -----
2 @STL 28-31 11 PHI -----
3 CIN 31-38 12 @DAL -----
4 @TB 24-22 13 NYG -----
5 ATL 17-24 14 BAL -----
6 MIN ----- 15 @CLE -----
7 @NYG ----- 16 @PHI -----
8 @PIT ----- 17 DAL -----
9 CAR ----- ----- ----- -----
News | Statistics | Roster
WAS vs MIN Rush Catch Pass
QB Robert Griffin III 40 250,1
RB Alfred Morris 80,1 2-10
WR Pierre Garcon 4-60
WR DeSean Jackson 4-60,1
WR Andre Roberts 6-80,1

Pregame Notes: The Skins have tumbled to a 2-0 mark thanks to playing in New Orleans and Tampa Bay still have not won at home. This week is easily their best chance of a win and along with the Panthers in week nine may be the only time they will be favored this year.

Robert Griffin III took a break as the best fantasy quarterback last week when he was knocked out of the Falcons game with a "mild" concussion. All signs point to him playing this week though he still needs to get through a week of practice free and clear before he can play. Griffin had been throwing for scores and also rushing in a touchdown for the previous three matchups. Kirk Cousins came in and gave it a valiant effort last week but it should be back to Bob this time.

Alfred Morris is still a fantasy gold mine considering that he has four touchdowns on the season and has never rushed for fewer than 78 yards in any game, He is on a two game streak with over 100 yards. His only failing is that they almost never throw to him. Then again, he is averaging 4.9 yards per carry and just under 100 yards per game.

Fred Davis has assumed a consistent role by now with his last three games producing never less than four catches and averaging just over 70 yards per game. With the wide receivers less than stellar, Davis has a place in this passing game that should only grow bigger. The wideouts have yet to distinguish themselves from each other and that even includes Pierre Garcon. The Redskins have five different wide receivers who all have between 114 and 184 yards after five games. That's a whole lot of mediocrity.

The Vikings defense has been very good - far exceeding expectations. But this is their third road game and they lost to the Colts and then clipped divisional rivals of the Lions. This is a big test so long as Griffin is able to play healthy and in his full capacity. The Vikings rushing defense has been top notch so far but they have never had to chase a quarterback.

The Redskins have to rise up this week because this is almost a must-win game.

Gaining Fantasy Points WAS 3 17 15 20 16 2
Preventing Fantasy Points MIN 14 3 15 29 11 4

QB Kirk Cousins, WAS @ATL 0000027011 ***
You want a touchdown pass? Kirk Cousins will deliver. You want two? Two interceptions we can do (every other week, this is a two-pick week), but if it's multiple touchdowns you seek you'll want to look elsewhere. Don't bank on a rushing score to bail you out like last week, either.
RB Alfred Morris, WAS @ATL 4011100000 ***
Either last week the top Jay Gruden spun pre-game to determine who gets the carries came up Alf, or Morris has re-claimed his spot as the Redskins' quantity back. Hope it's the latter, because the Falcons have allowed multiple RB rushing scores thrice in four games so even a typical Alf yardage outing would be made fantasy-worthy with a score.
RB Chris Thompson, WAS @ATL 2007700000 ***
No team has given up more RB receptions or RB receiving yards than the Falcons, and that's the role Thompson is filling for Washington. Similar backs Darren Sproles, Shane Vereen and Lance Dunbar have all caught at least seven passes for at least 75 yards, giving you a baseline for just what Thompson can do for you in PPR/performance leagues.
WR Pierre Garcon, WAS @ATL 007601000 ***
Garçon's the volume guy in Washington, and volume guys give Atlanta problems as every receiver to see double-digit targets against Atlanta has topped 100 yards or scored, or both. Also worth noting that big games against the Falcons tend to come from left-side receivers--at least until Atlanta slides Desmond Trufant over to shut them down. Garçon's another left-side guy, meaning for the moment at least he ducks Trufant and the passer rating of 65.1 on balls thrown his way.
WR Jamison Crowder, WAS @ATL 006600000 ***
Crowder has upside if DeSean Jackson isn't back this week. Operating out of the slot he'll cover the same space (and face the same coverage) as Jordan Matthews (10-102) and Cecil Shorts (6-87-1). A dozen targets last week--and a bunch of banged-up tight ends--suggest there's plenty of volume for Crowder as well.
TE Derek Carrier, WAS @ATL 005400000 ***
Carrier might fall into an opportunity here, as the Redskins love throwing to their tight end and he's the only healthy one around. Added bonus that the Falcons have allowed two TE TDs the past three games and an average of 5-45 to the position this year.
  Opp fgaFGMxpaXPM ConFac
K Dustin Hopkins, WAS @ATL 2222 ***
Atlanta's giving up plenty of PATs but being tight with the treys. Hopkins has steadily improved his point total since taking over for Kai Forbath, and he has yet to miss a kick. So if the downside is four PATs, that's not a terrible fantasy floor.

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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