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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: DET 24, MIN 17 (Line: DET by 1)

Players Updated: Percy Harvin, Adrian Peterson, Calvin Johnson

Players to Watch: Christian Ponder, Percy Harvin

The 4-4 Lions are on a two game winning streak but are 2-3 in road games. The 5-4 Vikings are on a two game losing streak and are 4-1 at home. This is a replay of week four when the Vikings won because of a punt and a kick return for a touchdown.

Detroit Lions
Homefield: Ford Field
FieldTurf
  Opp Score   Opp Score
1 STL 27-23 10 @MIN -----
2 @SF 19-27 11 GB -----
3 @TEN 41-44 12 HOU -----
4 MIN 13-20 13 IND -----
5 BYE ----- 14 @GB -----
6 @PHI 26-23 15 @ARI -----
7 @CHI 7-13 16 ATL -----
8 SEA 28-24 17 CHI -----
9 @JAC 31-14 ----- ----- -----
News | Stats | Roster
DET @ MIN Rush Catch Pass
QB Matthew Stafford 280,2
WR Golden Tate 3-40
PK Matt Prater 3 FG 3 XP

Pregame Notes: The Lions are 4-4 and by no means out of the playoff race but it will be a tough row to hoe with their schedule. If they can get past the Vikes, they may not be favored again this year. Five home games left is good but each one goes against a winning record. This week may be as good as it gets for the Lions short of possibly week 15 in Arizona.

Matt Stafford passed for 352 yards and three scores against the Seahawks in week eight but then went back to no scores in Jacksonville mostly because Mikel Leshoure had a career best three touchdowns. Stafford threw for more than one touchdown only in the one game. He's totaled just eight touchdowns on the year though he added three more scores via runs. Last week was the first time he did not score in any manner. Stafford passed for 319 yards and no touchdowns in week four versus the Vikings but added a rushing touchdown in that game.

The Jaguars were crushed by the Lions rushing. Mikel Leshoure scored only once all year and then three times in Jacksonville where he gained 70 yards on 13 runs. Even Joique Bell ran for 73 yards on 13 runs and scored once last week. Against the Vikes last time, Leshoure only rushed for 26 yards on 13 carries and added four receptions for 37 yards. Bell turned in six catches for 72 yards in that game as well. Last week was a major aberration - the Lions rushing attack is not nearly that good.

Brandon Pettigrew comes off his worst game of the year with just one catch for 11 yards but one of his top efforts was when he reeled in seven passes for 67 yards against the Vikings. Pettigrew scored just once all year and that was back in week two. He's been more consistent around 40 yards or so in recent games.

Calvin Johnson continues to be suffering from his left leg injury to the point that the Lions set up his routes to let him make cuts on his "good leg". Johnson ended with seven receptions for 129 yards in Jacksonville and was no worse after the game. Johnson said his knee will be an issue "indefinitely" but he is playing at a high level regardless. Johnson was held to only 54 yards on five catches in the last meeting with the Vikings. This is a different set of wideouts from what was used in week four. Nate Burleson is gone and Titus Young assumes his spot with Ryan Broyles becoming the #3. That worked great against the Seahawks with Young scoring twice in that game.

The Vikings are going to be without a healthy Percy Harvin and that will have a dramatic effect on the passing game of the Vikes that already has been shaky. This is a good time to travel to Minny and so long as special teams holds up this time, the Lions can win this game.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points DET 7 10 8 5 6 26
Preventing Fantasy Points MIN 26 15 12 17 15 19

  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
QB Matthew Stafford, DET @CIN 0000027020 ***
Quarterbacks have posted top-10 figures in fantasy points and yards per game against the Bengals over the past five weeks. The downside is this is the eighth-hardest defense for registering passing touchdowns. Stafford, if for nothing but volume alone, is a midrange starter.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB Theo Riddick, DET @CIN 2004301000 *
Riddick underwent double wrist surgery last offseason, so we played it safe with this one and omitted him from the projections. He'll return Friday after practicing in full Wednesday -- barring a setback, of course. Statistically, Washington has given up substantial gains on the ground but almost nothing via the sky to running backs over the past five weeks.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB Ameer Abdullah, DET @CIN 3002100000 **
Abdullah is likely to be removed from the rankings after Theo Riddick enters in Friday's update. Riddick had a scare with his surgically repaired wrist but is good to go. The matchup is pretty positive, but there is little reason to trust Abdullah even if Riddick were to wind up sitting.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB Tion Green, DET @CIN 300000000 ***
Green figures to be the lead back when Friday's rankings update comes out. Theo Riddick was removed because we were being cautious about his wrist injury. He's now ready to go. This means Ameer Abdullah is poised to return to fantasy obscurity. At any rate, the matchup is rock-solid for Green, should gamers be in a position to take a chance. He's best left for DFS lineups only.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB LeGarrette Blount, DET @CIN 200000000 ***
Oakland offers a promising matchup for touchdowns, so maybe gamers get lucky. Avoid Blount and his limited role where possible.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Golden Tate, DET @CIN 006801000 ***
Tate belongs in lineups, but the matchup is not overly appealing. Cincinnati has given up bottom-half figures in relation to the rest of the league in the past five weeks. Detroit's passing volume should keep his fantasy value afloat.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Marvin Jones Jr., DET @CIN 004600000 ***
Receivers have averaged 11 catches (21st) for 134 yards (23rd) and a touchdown every 18.3 balls (23rd) since Week 10. That is 11.3 percent below league average, and in the last three weeks the number jumps slightly to being 3 percent off the mark. Kendall Wright (20.7) and Stefon Diggs (14.7) have been solid over the last two outings.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Kenny Golladay, DET @CIN 002400000 ***
There is nothing redeeming about the matchup for such a fringe player. Cincinnati is the ninth-worst opponent for the week.
  Opp fgaFGMxpaXPM ConFac
K Matt Prater, DET @CIN 3322 ***
Kickers have made 12 of 13 point-afters and 11 of 13 three-point attempts in the past five weeks against the Bengals. This is the fourth-best prospective matchup and third most favorable in reality.

Minnesota Vikings
Homefield: Metrodome
FieldTurf
  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 26-38 15 @STL -----
7 ARI 21-14 16 @HOU -----
8 TB 17-36 17 GB -----
9 @SEA 20-30 ----- ----- -----
News | Statistics | Roster
vs Rush Catch Pass
WR Kendall Wright 3-30
TE Kyle Rudolph 3-30,1

Pregame Notes: The Vikings are on a two game losing streak and have the look of a 5-4 team that is about to fall apart. This week could be a win though Percy Harvin will be an issue and that takes away the only dangerous part of the passing game. After the week 11 bye, the schedule is about as murderous as can be. Road games in CHI, GB, STL and HOU face some great defenses. Home games versus CHI and GB are no fun either. It is entirely possible that the Vikings could even win this week and still end 6-9 on the season.

Christian Ponder's production is all over the map. He comes off a 63 yard game in Seattle and that wasn't even his worst (week 7 - 58 yards vs ARI). But he threw for 352 yards and two scores against the Redskins. Most notable this week was that Ponder passed for just 111 yards and no scores in Detroit earlier this year. Potentially losing Percy Harvin has to be disastrous to this offense that really does not rely on anyone else in the passing game.

Harvin suffered hamstring issues that were bothering him last week and then he suffered a severe ankle sprain. He has not ruled himself out this week and may gut it out but his level of play is almost certain to be reduced given he was still on crutches earlier in the week. None of the other wideouts matter here and this unit has only produced a collective five scoring catches all year anyway. Harvin has three of those touchdowns and and six games with over 80 yards. No other receiver has any games with as many as 80 yards. That rather dampens the outlook.

Harvin will be followed closely this week but at worst he is a game time decision and if he plays - how effective will he be? He is all they really have. Kyle Rudolph has marginal yardage but did score five times this year. His previous meeting with the Lions only produced two catches for eight yards though. Scary too is that Rudolph had no catches in two of the last three games.

Peterson is a lock to run well this week and he already gained 102 yards on 21 carries in Detroit. The only question here is how heavy of a load can they get to Peterson and if the already shaky passing scheme can weather a lower level of play from Harvin - if he even plays.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points MIN 28 17 23 20 8 16
Preventing Fantasy Points DET 12 5 19 16 21 28

  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
QB Kirk Cousins, MIN @GB 10000020020 ***
The good: Denver has given up a TD pass every 10.9 completions (6th-highest frequency). The rest: This is the worst defense for weekly yardage figures, and it's the third-hardest matchup for generating fantasy points (16.1/game).
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB Latavius Murray, MIN @GB 7011100000 ***
Back in Week 6, Murray wasn't much of a factor. The show was stolen by Jerick McKinnon's two-TD effort. Green Bay remains extremely vulnerable to running backs, though the matchup skews toward pass-catching types. Statistically, this is the worst matchup for rushing touchdowns, but extreme cold at Lambeau could flip the script.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Kendall Wright, MIN @GB 0071001000 ***
Wright has emerged in the past two games, landing 17 receptions on 24 targets. He hasn't scored since Week 4. This projection is rose colored but attainable. Cleveland has given up the fourth-most receptions for moderate yardage (14th) per game, with one in 18 landing in the end zone (22nd).
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Adam Thielen, MIN @GB 0071001000 ***
Receivers have scored with the highest frequency against Green Bay in the past five weeks. One in 5.9 catches has made it into the end zone. The Packers have limited receivers to just 9.4 receptions (28th) and 121.8 yards (28th), but much of those figures can be pinned on facing shaky passing attacks of Baltimore, Carolina, Cleveland and Tampa Bay. Thielen posted a 9-97-0 line in the Stefon Diggs-less Week 6 game. This one is at Lambeau Field in what is forecasted to be single digits.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Stefon Diggs, MIN @GB 004601000 ***
Diggs missed the previous meeting. The Packers have been a poor defense of receivers all year, but the recent weeks have provided a few matchups that have helped improve the look of the stats. This defense is 28th in receptions and yards allowed per game, but it remains the best for finding touchdowns (1 every 5.9 catches).
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
TE Kyle Rudolph, MIN @GB 004500000 ***
Rudolph (ankle) played in only 20 snaps last week, and he was limited in Tuesday's practice based on the approximation report. Green Bay provides the third-best matchup of the week, one that rates in the top eight for receptions, yardage and touchdown efficiency against.

Update: Rudolph is not on the injury report for Saturday's game.
  Opp fgaFGMxpaXPM ConFac
K Kai Forbath, MIN @GB 2233 ***
Twenty of the 21 combined kicking attempts were good, with all seven field goals being accurate. This is the sixth-worst matchup for three-pointers and sixth-best for TD-capping tries.

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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