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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: DAL 20, PHI 17 (Line: PHI by 2)

Players Updated: LeSean McCoy

Players to Watch: Michael Vick vs. Tony Romo

The 3-5 Eagles host the 3-5 Cowboys this week in the battle of the bitterly disappointed NFC East rivals. Here at mid-season there are already talks about head coach changes in the offseason and the weekly chance for Andy Reid to publicly support Michael Vick the coach killer. The main difference here is that Philly offensive line that actually makes the Cowboys look like they have no real problems when they do. Bottom line, one team is going to be feeling mighty low after this game. Like "I just don't know what to say anymore" sort of low. And you have to assume this will be a lower scoring, close game no matter what.

The fun part could be if we get the bad Romo and the bad Vick. That could set an NFL record for turnovers.

Dallas Cowboys
Homefield: Cowboys Stadium
RealGrass
  Opp Score   Opp Score
1 @NYG 24-17 10 @PHI -----
2 @SEA 7-27 11 CLE -----
3 TB 16-10 12 WAS -----
4 CHI 18-34 13 PHI -----
5 BYE ----- 14 @CIN -----
6 @BAL 29-31 15 PIT -----
7 @CAR 19-14 16 NO -----
8 NYG 24-29 17 @WAS -----
9 @ATL 13-19 ----- ----- -----
News | Statistics | Roster
DAL @ PHI Rush Catch Pass
QB Tony Romo 260,2
RB DeMarco Murray
WR Dez Bryant 6-60
TE Jason Witten 7-50
PK Dan Bailey 2 FG 2 XP

Pregame Notes: The Cowboys certainly fought the good fight in Atlanta same as against the Giants. And the Ravens. Not so much the Bears. Dallas entered it knowing that the Falcons game was nearly a must-win situation and yet they fell short against a team that at the very least does not make as many mistakes as the Cowboys do.

This week is actually another must-win that could actually set off an impressive string. The Cowboys will only play two road games in their final seven weeks and those are in Cincinnati and Washington - both very winnable. It would only be appropriate for them to run the table and save everyone's jobs. And then lose in their first playoff game. This week is maybe the toughest remaining game.

Tony Romo continues to throw for high yardage and yet only score once. He's thrown only 11 touchdowns this year and only that high thanks to the three he pitched in the season opener over the Giants. He has limited his mistakes in most recent games and two of the last three contained no turnovers. He's consistent and on a pace for 4700 yards. He just cannot get over the hump of scoring just once each week. The Dallas defense is good, but it cannot hold opponents back for an entire game when the offense just doesn't score much.

Romo strained his back on the final play last week but claims it is only minor and will not be an issue this week.

DeMarco Murray is likely to miss this week as well with his foot injury not yet allowing him to pass all his tests and get back to practice. HC Jason Garrett said he would not play Murray without him practicing so that should be clear at the end of the week. Early reports are not encouraging. Felix Jones actually produced some decent runs and caught five passes for 70 yards in Atlanta. He'll continue to take the start with Lance Dunbar and Philip Tanner backing him up. Tanner only received one carry in the Atlanta game while Dunbar was the surprise getting eight runs for 26 yards. This offense still misses Murray and cannot mount a credible rushing attack without him.

Jason Witten still churns out the catches each week though he's only scored once all year. He's been good for at least seven catches and has become the Cowboys all-time franchise leader in receptions.

Dez Bryant claims his hip injury was not an issue last week despite only catching one pass for 15 yards. He runs hot and cold all the time and in the last four games, two went for more than 95 yards each and produced two scores. The other two never had more than two catches or 15 yards in them. He's very feast or famine and not being 100% healthy makes him an ever bigger risk. Austin Miles remains the consistent wideout and he leads all receivers with four scores on the season.

The Eagles have given up 12 scores to quarterbacks but the yardage has been lower in most games and even Drew Brees only managed 239 yards on Monday night. The Eagles rushing defense has yielded only two rushing touchdowns this year and the Cowboys without Murray are not likely to change that.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points DAL 16 22 9 2 20 28
Preventing Fantasy Points PHI 13 14 13 13 27 31

  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
QB Tony Romo, DAL WAS 0000028020 ***
Much to like here, both historically--Romo has multiple touchdowns in four of his last five against the Redskins--and recently, as the Redskins have allowed multiple touchdowns in five straight while Romo has thrown multiple scoring strikes in five consecutive as well.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB DeMarco Murray, DAL WAS 12012100000 *****
The Redskins haven't allowed a 100-yard rusher since Week 1 and have surrendered only one RB rushing score all season... but c'mon, Murray just broke a Jim Brown record so this season must be magical. Triple-digit yardage is all but a given, and a TD more likely than those Redskins stats might lead you to believe.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Dez Bryant, DAL WAS 0061101000 ***
The Redskins aren't really shutting down opposing passing games, so expect Bryant to get his--which at home has meant 100 yards or a touchdown in his last three at Jones Majal.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Terrance Williams, DAL WAS 005701000 ****
Washington has surrendered touchdowns to multiple receivers in each of the past two games, so even if Dez gets his and DeMarco Murray gets his there should be enough left over for Williams to carve out some fantasy assistance this week.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
TE Jason Witten, DAL WAS 005500000 ****
Witten's fantasy value is being usurped by Gavin Escobar, who has scored three of the Cowboys' last four TE TDs. It's not a compelling enough matchup to make Witten anything other than a fringe fantasy helper at best.
  Opp fgaFGMxpaXPM ConFac
K Dan Bailey, DAL WAS 2244 ***
Bailey has been solid, but just one double-digit points effort in the past month leaves him a bit shy of spectacular. Plan accordingly.

Philadelphia Eagles
Homefield: Lincoln Financial Field
Turf
  Opp Score   Opp Score
1 @CLE 17-16 10 DAL -----
2 BAL 24-23 11 @WAS -----
3 @ARI 6-27 12 CAR -----
4 NYG 19-17 13 @DAL -----
5 @PIT 14-16 14 @TB -----
6 DET 23-26 15 CIN -----
7 BYE ----- 16 WAS -----
8 ATL 17-30 17 @NYG -----
9 @NO 13-28 ----- ----- -----
News | Statistics | Roster
PHI vs DAL Rush Catch Pass
QB Mark Sanchez 160
RB LeSean McCoy 70,1 6-40
WR Jeremy Maclin 5-40
TE James Casey 3-20,1
TE Brent Celek 4-30,1

Pregame Notes: The Eagles drop another game and their season was probably summed up on the one play in New Orleans where Michael Vick threw a pass to Brent Celek and it bounced off his hands into a defender who did not stop running for 99 yards when he scored a touchdown. Vick is getting beaten up each week and the problem only gets worse. The Saints alone had seven sacks last week. The Eagles offensive line is missing their center, left tackle and right guard and right tackle. RT Demetress Bell was constantly victimized last week and now gets to face De Marcus Ware. That is not likely to help.

HC Andy Reid already made his weekly show of support in naming Vick as still the starter. But Vick has only tossed ten touchdowns this year and never more than two in a game if even that. He runs every week maybe half a dozen times but still has just one rushing score from back in week two. Vick threw for decent yardage and two scores on the Cowboys last year in both meetings but the Cowboys have vastly upgraded their cornerbacks who are playing better as the season progresses.

LeSean McCoy ran for 119 yards in New Orleans but he's been far less productive in all other recent games where he remained below 55 rushing yards for the last three games. But McCoy is on a four game scoring streak and three of those came on passes. His role as a receiver salvages his fantasy value nearly every week. Bryce Brown broke off on a couple of runs and ended with 49 yards on just four carries but the Saints are the #32 defense against running backs anyway. Brown had more than ten yards in only one game this year and is no factor to consider.

Brent Celek was on a roll last week when he tipped the pass that was returned for an interception and lost a fumble to kill the drive that would have made it much more of a game in New Orleans. He's still stuck at around 35 yards in almost every game and scored just once this season. Celek enjoyed big games against the Cowboys last year when he posted 94 yards and a score at home and later 52 yards and a touchdown in Dallas. He's a good risk this week with the Cowboys showing up with actual cornerbacks this time.

Jeremy Maclin scored in both meetings with the Cowboys last year but has been very quiet in 2011 and only once gained more than 39 yards since the season opener. He faces Brandon Carr this week which should shut him down. DeSean Jackson scored on a 77 yard catch-and-sprint but only totaled three catches for 100 yards. The wide receivers are less effective this year and did not even have a big showing last week against the worse secondary in the NFL. That bodes poorly for this tilt against a defense that he been very good at shutting down wideouts.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points PHI 11 23 17 12 23 29
Preventing Fantasy Points DAL 4 9 7 7 23 29

  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
QB Nick Foles, PHI @ARI 0000028022 ***
Foles has had one fantasy dog to blemish an otherwise solid season. The Cards held Derek Carr in check last week but for the most part have been a favorable matchup for opposing QBs. Bet on Foles to be more favorable than Carr-like this week.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB LeSean McCoy, PHI @ARI 5004200000 ***
The Cards haven't allowed much on the ground this year, and they kept McCoy out of the end zone in last year's meeting so keep your expectations in check. That said, McCoy's volume and the 115 combo yards he posted against Arizona last year suggest he's still a solid fantasy play this week--especially if Darren Sproles remains sidelined with his knee injury.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB Darren Sproles, PHI @ARI 2006400000 ***
Sproles is supposed to be back for this game, but after a limited practice session on Wednesday it remains to be seen if he'll make it to the field on Sunday. Best make a Plan B for now, and if Sproles shows signs of life during the latter half of the practice week you can always elevate him to your lineup.
Update: After a full practice on Friday Sproles is officially listed as questionable. It's not a tremendous matchup, but it sounds like Sproles will at least be an option for fantasy owners.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Riley Cooper, PHI @ARI 004301000 **
Over the past month Coop has been a consistent provider of 30-50 yards and the occasional touchdown. It's a favorable matchup so he should be at the high end of that range, but he's still playing second fiddle to Jeremy Maclin in this passing game.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Jordan Matthews, PHI @ARI 005600000 ***
Matthews has done little aside from that two-TD game. And while another double isn't out of the question here he's still battling Jeremy Maclin, Riley Cooper, Zach Ertz, and the running backs for looks so it's far from likely.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Jeremy Maclin, PHI @ARI 004500000 ***
Shouldn't matter who covers Maclin; none of the Arizona corners are having particularly good seasons. Speed receivers like DeSean Jackson have had success against the Cards so don't be surprised if, after a down week against the Giants prior to Philly's bye, Maclin storms back with a solid fantasy effort this week.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
TE Zach Ertz, PHI @ARI 004701000 ****
The Cards have allowed three TE TDs and four games of 65-plus yards to the position. So even though Ertz still has to share some targets with Brent Celek and James Casey he's a big enough part of this offense to be a reliable fantasy contributor--especially with the favorable matchup.
  Opp fgaFGMxpaXPM ConFac
K Cody Parkey, PHI @ARI 2222 ****
Parkey's been right around 10 points per game on a weekly basis, but the Cardinals don't allow much to opposing kickers so it'll be a battle of wills. Split the difference and hope for "above average".

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

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