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Predictions & Projections
David Dorey
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WEEK 10
2012
IND at JAC (THU) DEN at CAR *NYJ at SEA TEN at MIA
ATL at NO *DET at MIN OAK at BAL *KC at PIT (MON)
*BUF at NE *HOU at CHI *SD at TB Bye:
*UPDATED DAL at PHI NYG at CIN *STL at SF ARI, CLE, GB, WAS

Prediction: ATL 30, NO 24 (Line: ATL by 3)

Players to Watch: Julio Jones, Roddy White

The 9-0 Falcons head towards their second divisional game of the season. The 3-5 Saints are on a one game winning streak and sport the worst defense against quarterbacks, running backs and wide receivers. It is truly the FANTASY TRIFECT and all too rare. We may never again see this in our lifetimes. Thank you Bountygate. Or whatever. I have to stop before I start crying again.

Atlanta Falcons
Homefield: Georgia Dome
FieldTurf
  Opp Score   Opp Score
1 @KC 40-24 10 @NO -----
2 DEN 27-21 11 ARI -----
3 @SD 27-3 12 @TB -----
4 CAR 30-28 13 NO -----
5 @WAS 24-17 14 @CAR -----
6 OAK 23-20 15 NYG -----
7 BYE ----- 16 @DET -----
8 @PHI 30-17 17 TB -----
9 DAL 19-13 ----- ----- -----
News | Statistics | Roster
ATL @ NO Rush Catch Pass
QB Matt Ryan 10 300,2
QB Matt Schaub 210,1
WR Julio Jones 7-110,1
PK Matt Bryant 3 FG 3 XP

Pregame Notes: The lone undefeated team may end up having to drop a trap game before too long because the schedule has only one winning record left to play and the Giants are the visitors in week 15. The Falcons are not overpowering anyone really, they are just a bit more balanced, make fewer mistakes and end up just good enough to always get the job done. Short of something unforeseen and catastrophic, the NFC will be going through Atlanta before the Superbowl.

Matt Ryan finally was held scoreless last week by the Cowboys but he still put up 342 passing yards with no turnovers. Ryan already passed for 17 touchdowns against only five interceptions and six of his games featured multiple touchdowns. He's thrown for over 300 yards in half his games so facing the #32 defense against quarterbacks is bound to be a very, very good thing.

Michael Turner comes off a solid effort against the Cowboys with 102 yards on 20 carries but that was with a 43-yard carry mixed in and he was no where near as productive on most carries as the totals suggest. That was his first good game since week five and mostly came on popping one long run that saw him caught before he could score.

Jacquizz Rodgers remains just change of pace and third downs with a few catches thrown in. Even against the Redskins and their weak secondary, Rodgers only had 12 total yards so facing the Saints doesn't necessarily mean decent numbers for Rodgers.

Tony Gonzalez was red hot when he started the season with four scores in the first five weeks but he's been held under 45 yards in each of the last three games and not scored. He is getting only five passes per game instead of the 10 or so he was thrown in earlier games.

This week will be all about Julio Jones and Roddy White. Jones scored in every road game so far and always turns in solid yardage. He was much less effective at home but then gained a season high 129 yards just last week when the Cowboys came to town. Jones should be a lock for a monster game here. Roddy White finally did not score at home last Sunday but still posted 118 yards on seven catches himself.

Like every week - anyone facing the Saints is a must start. This one should be lots of fun. The Falcons need to win divisional games anyway and the Saints have won the last three meetings and six of the last seven. Time for some payback.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points ATL 4 14 7 6 2 11
Preventing Fantasy Points NO 32 32 32 9 24 9

  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
QB Matt Ryan, ATL TB 10000040040 ***
Ryan's foot injury came up clear of anything being broken in Week 5. He was harassed by Pittsburgh's pass rush and struggled to produce like he had the previous three games. Tampa Bay returns from its bye to offer the best matchup in football for his position. This is the top spot to find a touchdown pass and the last third-least likely place to find an interception. Ryan averaged only 18.75 points last year in two games vs. the Bucs.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB Tevin Coleman, ATL TB 6003201000 ***
Atlanta had to abandon the ground game last week, and Coleman could find a similar situation vs. Tampa. The Falcons are working Devonta Freeman back into the mix, as well, making Coleman nothing better than a flex with a tremendous matchup. He ran for two TDs in last year's lone meeting with the Bucs.

Update: Freeman has been ruled out after showing up with foot and groin injuries. Coleman is a quality RB this week and should share a few looks with rookie Ito Smith.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB Ito Smith, ATL TB 3003200000 ***
Update: Smith should see a few looks with Devonta Freeman out. Tevin Coleman will be the lead back, though. Smith has a great matchup and is safely left on the bench.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Julio Jones, ATL TB 0081401000 ***
The Bucs held Jones to a 3-54-0 line in the Week 15 trip to Tampa last year, three games after he obliterated them for 12-253-2. In 2018, the Buccaneers, returning from a bye week, rank second in fantasy points allowed in both primary formats on a per-game basis. This is a wonderful matchup for catches, yards and touchdown production.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Calvin Ridley, ATL TB 006801000 ***
Ridley faces the fifth-best matchup for ease of touchdown scoring by wideouts over the first five weeks. Tampa Bay has given up nine scores in four games to the position, permitting the second-most receptions a game, as well.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Mohamed Sanu, ATL TB 005700000 ***
Sanu was good for 14.4 PPR points in the home game last year vs. the Bucs. He has seen at least six targets in four of his five '18 games, logging at least four receptions in each of those contests. He also has two TDs in his last three, and the veteran has managed 10 catches for 184 yards in the last two weeks, posting 17-plus points in PPR in both. The Bucs represent the second-worst defense of receivers in the league on a per-game basis. He was limited in practice Wednesday.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
TE Austin Hooper, ATL TB 003400000 ***
Hooper was targeted a career-high 12 times last weekend, landing a personal-best nine receptions. He went for 77 yards and has just one score in 2018 (Week 2). Obviously, this level of utility is an anomaly, so be wary of a dip in stats. The upside is this matchup is amazing -- the best in football, in fact. The Buccaneers have allowed the third-most yardage and most fantasy points in both scoring main formats on a weekly basis.
  Opp fgaFGMxpaXPM ConFac
K Matt Bryant, ATL TB 1155 ***
No writeup available

New Orleans Saints
Homefield: Superdome
Sportexe Turf
  Opp Score   Opp Score
1 WAS 32-40 10 ATL -----
2 @CAR 27-35 11 @OAK -----
3 KC 24-27 12 SF -----
4 @GB 27-28 13 @ATL -----
5 SD 31-24 14 @NYG -----
6 BYE ----- 15 TB -----
7 @TB 35-28 16 @DAL -----
8 @DEN 14-34 17 CAR -----
9 PHI 28-13 ----- ----- -----
News | Statistics | Roster
NO vs ATL Rush Catch Pass
QB Drew Brees 300,3
RB Mark Ingram II 30 2-10

Pregame Notes: The Saints finally had a bona fide, real win by a comfortable margin and the opponent did not score their season high for once. Then again, the 99-yard interception return kept this from being 21-20. The Saints at home against a weak team still can get it done. The defense is not going to hold much of anyone at bay but at least Brees and company can outscore a bad team by now. That does not apply to the 8-0 Falcons.

Drew Brees was a little light in yardage these last two weeks but he has scored at least twice in every game this season and currently owns 22 passing touchdowns. He is a must start who will be playing at home against the team that let him throw for 307 yards and four touchdowns the last time they visited New Orleans. This is a big game for the Saints and one that they'll be up for knowing the Falcons have sort of replaced them this year.

Darren Sproles remains out but his departure did nothing to reduce the committee in the backfield. They just moved Chris Ivory up and gave him ten carries to gain 48 yards and one score. Mark Ingram gained 44 yards on seven runs and had a season best two catches for 23 yards. Pierre Thomas still had his normal six runs for 44 yards and two catches for 26 yards. The Saints refuse to let any individual back have much fantasy value. All you can expect is marginal yardage and maybe a score every now and then. They love their mix-n-match backfield.

Jimmy Graham is completely over his sprained ankle with a score and 60+ yards in each of the last two games. He is the only Saints player that always gets double digit targets every week.

The wideouts are more limited this year. Marques Colston is more used than in the past with six touchdowns on the season and two games over 100 yards. Lance Moore hasn't scored since week three but still usually posts 60+ yards. The wideouts are really limited to just the two now instead of the three or four in years past.

This week the Falcons should grab a lead and force the Saints to throw. The worst thing that can happen is the score remains close and the Saints use their trio of running backs to keep the game score lower. Nah - this is the worst defense. That just won't happen.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points NO 1 7 5 8 29 21
Preventing Fantasy Points ATL 11 22 3 15 2 4

WEEK 10
2012
IND at JAC (THU) DEN at CAR *NYJ at SEA TEN at MIA
ATL at NO *DET at MIN OAK at BAL *KC at PIT (MON)
*BUF at NE *HOU at CHI *SD at TB Bye:
*UPDATED DAL at PHI NYG at CIN *STL at SF ARI, CLE, GB, WAS

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