FANTASY FOOTBALL IN-SEASON FEATURES

Predictions & Projections
David Dorey
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WEEK 9
2012
KC at SD (THU) CAR at WAS *DET at JAC TB at OAK
*ARI at GB CHI at TEN *MIA at IND *PHI at NO (MON)
BAL at CLE *DAL at ATL MIN at SEA Bye:
*UPDATED *BUF at HOU DEN at CIN *PIT at NYG NE , NYJ, SF, STL

Prediction: BUF 17, HOU 30 (Line: HOU by 10)

Players to Watch: Arian Foster vs. #32 Defense against RBs

Players Updated: Ben Tate

The 3-4 Bills arrive with a 2-2 road record but were waxed 3-45 by the 49ers the last time they faced a good defense on the road. The 6-1 Texans are coming off their bye week with likely the softest matchup of the year.

Buffalo Bills
Homefield: Ralph Wilson Stadium
AstroTurf
  Opp Score   Opp Score
1 @NYJ 28-48 10 @NE -----
2 KC 35-17 11 MIA -----
3 @CLE 24-14 12 @IND -----
4 NE 28-52 13 JAC -----
5 @SF 3-45 14 STL -----
6 @ARI 19-16 15 SEA -----
7 TEN 34-35 16 @MIA -----
8 BYE ----- 17 NYJ -----
9 @HOU ----- ----- ----- -----
News | Statistics | Roster
vs Rush Catch Pass
RB Reggie Bush 80 5-40
RB LeSean McCoy 80,1 4-20
PK Dan Carpenter 1 FG 2 XP

Pregame Notes: The important thing to remember for this game is that the Bills are no better than the defense is good or bad. Meaning at home against soft defenses like Kansas City or Tennessee, the Bills slap up 34+ points on the score board. On the road versus a great defense and they only managed three points against the 49ers. Playing in Houston is going to be much more like playing in San Francisco than hosting the Titans or Chiefs.

Ryan Fitzpatrick scored 15 touchdowns so far with nine interceptions but his last two road games produced no touchdowns and fewer than 160 pass yards in each. Fitzpatrick is a mirror of the Bills - he is greatly productive against a bad defense but then is mediocre when the opponent sports a decent defense. Notable too is that he has never thrown more than 208 yards in any road game this year.

Scott Chandler is no longer a fantasy factor with no scores or ever more than 40 yards in the last three weeks. He's been decent when at home against soft defenses and really no other time.

The passing offense mainly relies on Stevie Johnson who has four touchdowns on the season but never more than 82 yards in any game and in his last two road trips versus decent defenses he was unable to score. No other wideout here has any reliable fantasy value. Donald Jones shows up only at home against bad defenses.

The offense runs through both backs who have been used as much as receivers lately as they were runners. Both backs have marginal rushing stats in games because they share carries and neither gets more than about a dozen carries in most games. C.J. Spiller is the more productive runner with four rushing scores on the year and 70+ yards in each of the last two games. Jackson has been solid with 50 or so rushing yards and he scored in Arizona as did Spiller. Jackson has been more used as a receiver lately with 13 catches for 79 yards and a score over the last two weeks. Spiller is still good there as well with ten receptions for 54 yards in those two games.

The last time the Bills went on the road to face a good defense they were destroyed in San Francisco. They catch a Texans team fresh off their bye and can only hope for enough garbage time to get in meaningful scores and yardage.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points BUF 18 4 22 18 31 14
Preventing Fantasy Points HOU 9 3 15 21 3 5

  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
QB Tyrod Taylor, BUF ARI 20000020001 ***
Taylor erupted with big plays in Week 2, but this go of it won't be as easy. He takes on a Cardinals' pass defense that ranks ninth against the position, allowing only 17.7 fantasy points per game. Only daily gamers can consider him a viable option.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB LeSean McCoy, BUF ARI 6014200000 ***
Don't sit your studs, but be cautious with McCoy. First of all, the matchup looks brutal on paper. Only four teams have allowed fewer fantasy points to RBs. The matchup looks much worse than it is after Doug Martin went down in Week 2. LeGarrette Blount mustered 70 yards and a TD in the opener.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Marquise Goodwin, BUF ARI 002400000 ***
The home run Goodwin clobbered in Week 2 is the only reason he is in the fantasy conversation at this point. Avoid him in all traditional setups, even though Arizona is a sound matchup. DFS only.

Update: The expected loss of Sammy Watkins this week means more looks for Goodwin, but he's largely a one-trick pony. As previously noted, DFS only.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Robert Woods, BUF ARI 004400000 ***
With all of the attention on Sammy Watkins, Woods may see an increased target count. Play him if you are truly desperate or looking for a DFS gamble. The Cardinals have allowed the eighth most fantasy points per game to the position so far, and garbage-time points could be a real scenario here.

Update: Sammy Watkins (foot) is a game-time decision and not expected to go ... bump up Woods based on the sheer volume increase, but he's still a barely worthy play in most situations.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Greg Salas, BUF ARI 003400000 ***
Buffalo's slot receiver can spring up now and again, but fantasy owners shouldn't look his way due to a lack of consistency and targets.

Update: Sammy Watkins and Charles Clay are both questionable. Salas might see more looks, if it matters, although he, too, is listed as as questionable with a groin strain. Clay and Salas were limited practice participants Friday.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
TE Charles Clay, BUF ARI 004400000 ***
Arizona faced two teams with tight end issues so far, resulting in this D giving up only eight catches for 44 yards. Clay isn't involved enough to warrant consideration, but he is a big-play guy, so a TD is not a crazy expectation.

Update: Clay is questionable but practiced in a limited fashion Friday. He may be hampered, but the uncertain nature of Sammy Watkins' playing time opens the door for Clay to see more targets. Tread cautiously.
  Opp fgaFGMxpaXPM ConFac
K Dan Carpenter, BUF ARI 3311 ***
Buffalo's offense is just good enough in this matchup to give Carpenter several chances from downtown.

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 23-17 14 @NE -----
6 GB 24-42 15 IND -----
7 BAL 43-13 16 MIN -----
8 BYE ----- 17 @IND -----
9 BUF ----- ----- ----- -----
News | Statistics | Roster
HOU vs BUF Rush Catch Pass
QB Brandon Weeden 280,1
PK Nick Novak 3 FG 3 XP
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
QB Brock Osweiler, HOU @NE 0000027021 ***
On the road, at Bill's house, you have to be desperate for Osweiler to be used in traditional starting lineup. DFS gamers may want to take a chance, however.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB Lamar Miller, HOU @NE 8004200000 ***
Miller is a respectable start and better in PPR. The Patriots rank 16th against the position, allowing two TDs on the ground this year.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR DeAndre Hopkins, HOU @NE 0071201000 ***
Hopkins is an elite player with special attributes. New England has yielded the fourth most fantasy points to the position in the first two weeks.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Will Fuller, HOU @NE 006901000 ***
The rookie has enjoyed a strong start to his career and is rewarding fantasy owners, or at least those of whom brave enough to start him in the first two weeks. He's a WR3 with upside against the fourth easiest statistical matchup for wide receivers.
  Opp fgaFGMxpaXPM ConFac
K Nick Novak, HOU @NE 2222 ***
Novak has been too good to get away from, especially on the road against a quality defense where his offense may sputter.

Pregame Notes: The Texans come off their bye with likely their softest match-up of the year. After this will be four road games over five weeks before winding down the season with double wins over the Colts and against the Vikings. WIth a healthy lead over the rest of the division, at least the Texans will continue to play hard to ensure homefield advantage throughout the playoffs.

Matt Schaub still hasn't thrown a 300 yard game this year and may not with such a dominating rushing effort and a defense that keeps game scores lower. Unfortunately, his production varies greatly from game to game. He is not reliable for more than one passing score and lower 200's in passing yardage. Even less so in a home game against one of the worst rushing defenses in the league.

Arian Foster has been less prolific in yardage and only caught one pass in all but one game. But his rushing tends to produce 80+ yards and more important, he is a scoring machine that never fails to notch a touchdown this season. After seven games played, Foster scored nine rushing touchdowns and one as a receiver. Even when he had his one bad yardage game that totaled only 41 yards against the Packers he still scored twice. Ben Tate actually offered some fantasy value last year but not so for 2012. He has not turned in any real production since week two.

Andre Johnson is still good enough to merit a fantasy start every week but with only two touchdowns and never more than 86 yards since the season opener, he's just an average sort of wideout. Not the league leader of years past. What's worse is two games that produced under 25 yards. And yet that is still better than any other wideout for the Texans. Kevin Walter hangs on to the flanker spot but has no consistency or reliability.

Surprisingly, Owen Daniels has moved up to being the primary receiver for the Texans. He is the leading scorer with four receiving touchdowns and offers consistency in yardage with 50 to 70 yards in most games. Johnson still receives more targets, Daniels just catches almost all of his and scores more.

This could be fun. The best rushing offense at home facing the worst defense. You can only dream of these sort of match-ups.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points HOU 24 1 29 3 5 2
Preventing Fantasy Points BUF 30 32 27 15 19 22

INSERT

WEEK 9
2012
KC at SD (THU) CAR at WAS *DET at JAC TB at OAK
*ARI at GB CHI at TEN *MIA at IND *PHI at NO (MON)
BAL at CLE *DAL at ATL MIN at SEA Bye:
*UPDATED *BUF at HOU DEN at CIN *PIT at NYG NE , NYJ, SF, STL

a d v e r t i s e m e n t