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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: HOU 20, CHI 17 (Line: CHI by 1.5)

Players Updated: Owen Daniels, James Casey

Players to Watch: Brandon Marshall

This should have been the Thursday or Monday game. Granted - not likely to produce a ton of points here but two of the top defenses will meet and both teams sport 7-1 records. The Texas are undefeated on the road and the Bears are unbeaten at home. This is going to be interesting. We just have to hope it doesn't end with as low of a score as seems likely.

This game pits too similar teams. Both have a great defense. Both have one stud receiver and then almost no one else. Both have a great running back who is a dual threat. The Texans have a better offensive line.

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 21-9 ----- ----- -----
News | Statistics | Roster
vs Rush Catch Pass

Pregame Notes: Naturally the Texans faced their weakest opponent when the Bills visited last week and they scored their lowest total of the year. It was a scrimmage really compared to this week which may be the toughest game left on the schedule along with perhaps the trip to New England in week 14. As it shockingly ends up, the Texans may not lock down the division before playing the Colts twice in the final three weeks. The last two years have scheduled division games mostly in the second half of the season but now they end up the same team twice in the final week.

The Texans have only played in three road games this year and the only good teams they have faced are the Broncos back when they were not yet all together and then the Packers who gave them their only loss.

Matt Schaub is no better than the opponent's secondary allows him to be and that will be a problem this week. Schaub produced four games with two or more touchdowns but three came at home and only in the Denver game was he able to post more than one touchdown pass.

What helps here is that while Andre Johnson is clearly the main threat in the passing game, he is actually not the only one with some level of consistent production. Owen Daniels is the leader in receiving touchdowns with five over the last six games. He rarely tops 60 yards or so but he's been nothing short of a touchdown machine for more than the past month. That helps compensate for the marginal set of wideouts that continue to be of minimal production outside of Johnson. It has to be of concern too that Johnson only caught a total of six passes over his three road games.

Ben Tate remains out with a bad hamstring not that it has mattered much. If anything, Arian Foster owners get the benefit of him getting around 25 touches every week with no one to share with other than Justin Forsett who really, really does not count. Foster played last week with the flu and was vomiting before the game but still gained 74 yards on 12 runs and scored twice. He's scored at least once in every game this year. All nine. He rarely ever has more than one catch though though he is certainly a capable receiver that caught as many as six passes in a game back in week two.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points HOU 22 2 30 3 9 4
Preventing Fantasy Points CHI 2 4 15 24 5 25

  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
QB Tom Savage, HOU ARI 0000022021 ***
Savage has been brutal for fantasy purposes and doesn't belong anywhere near a lineup, even against Arizona's fifth-weakest defense of quarterbacks. The matchup regresses to being the ninth-best if the two rushing TDs are removed.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB Lamar Miller, HOU ARI 6003300000 ***
One of every 41 rushing attempts (14th) has gone the distance, and none of the 29 receptions faced by Arizona has scored. Miller takes on a defense giving up 77.8 rushing yards (22nd) but 64 receiving yards (2nd).
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB D'Onta Foreman, HOU ARI 300000000 ***
This matchup is mediocre, with its highlights coming by way of aerial production surrendered. Foreman could do some work on third-down or via the screen game.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR DeAndre Hopkins, HOU ARI 006701000 ***
Hopkins' target count has been through the roof with Tom Savage under center. The veteran wideout is QB proof for anyone not named Brock Osweiler, it turns out. Arizona is a reasonable matchup.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Bruce Ellington, HOU ARI 003301000 *
Arizona has been a friendly opponent for much of the year. In recent weeks, the tide has turned. Arizona has given up a good chuck of yardage each week (10th-most) but rates in the bottom half of the league in receptions (19th) and TD efficiency (17th). This is an optimistic projection for Ellington, even with Will Fuller out of commission.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
TE C.J. Fiedorowicz, HOU ARI 002200000 ***
CJF returned last week and has a pretty good matchup this time out. The Cardinals have given up the fifth-most receptions per game, and three of those 23 balls have made it into the end zone.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
TE Stephen Anderson, HOU ARI 003200000 ***
Anderson isn't a fantasy commodity, even with a good matchup like this one. Keep him on the wire.
  Opp fgaFGMxpaXPM ConFac
K Ka'imi Fairbairn, HOU ARI 2222 ***
All 16 kicks (7 FGs) have been on the mark against the Cards, which averages out to being a middle-of-the-road 7.0 fantasy points per outing.

Chicago Bears
Homefield: Soldier Field
Grass
  Opp Score   Opp Score
1 IND 41-21 10 HOU -----
2 @GB 10-23 11 @SF -----
3 STL 23-6 12 MIN -----
4 @DAL 34-18 13 SEA -----
5 @JAC 41-3 14 @MIN -----
6 BYE ----- 15 GB -----
7 DET 13-7 16 @ARI -----
8 CAR 23-22 17 @DET -----
9 @TEN 51-20 ----- ----- -----
News | Statistics | Roster
CHI vs HOU Rush Catch Pass
QB Mark Sanchez 160
WR Kendall Wright 3-30

Pregame Notes: The Bears are on a six game winning streak though recent games have been closer than expected. The next two weeks offers an entirely new challenge for the Bears going against two of the very best defenses in the league. The offense remains two dimensional - either Brandon Marshall catches it or Matt Forte runs it. There have been no other successful players in the offense. That's worked well enough against average defenses and the Chicago defense has been a big contributor to the scoreboard as well. This time will be different.

Jay Cutler threw for more than 200 yards only four times and three were in road games, At home he has stuck around one score and sub-200 yardage because the defense and rushing game is good enough to secure the win in almost every game. His yardage is always defined by how well he is able to connect with Marshall.

The tight ends do not always catch a pass each week and remain one of the least used units in the NFL in terms of receptions. Marshall caught seven of the 12 team passing touchdowns and his yardage dwarfs all other receivers - combined. Since Alshon Jeffrey left in week six, no other wideout has produced more than around 50 yards per game and more usually just one or two short catches. Marshall has been probably the most unstoppable receiver in the NFL this year though again - they have not faced a lot of great defenses either. Jeffrey remains out again so chances are pretty good they Texans have noticed that the passing effort starts, thrives and ends with Marshall. Only two teams have seen a wideout manage a big game against the Texans - Packers and Broncos. Both have at least two legitimate threats at wide receiver.

The tandem backfield still leans heavily towards Matt Forte and the closer the game, the more that Forte remains on the field. He's scored in each of the last two games and produced 100+ total yards in each of the last four games. His role as a receiver should see an uptick this week as well given the chance that Cutler cannot merely play pitch-and-catch with Brandon Marshall at will.

Problem this week is that the Texans have not allowed any running back to run in a score this year. None. Only Chris Johnson managed more than 70 yards on them and that was all because of one run. This week will show just how good both teams really are this season. These teams come off so even that both of them only have one loss and the Packers delivered both of them. The Texans also rank in the top ten for not making mistakes and the Bears defense may not be contributing to the scoreboard this week. Hard as that seems to accept by now.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points CHI 23 15 12 32 4 1
Preventing Fantasy Points HOU 9 3 9 11 3 5

  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
QB Mitchell Trubisky, CHI DET 0000019010 ***
Trubisky showed a little life last week. Detroit, though, has given up only four TD passes, while intercepting as many, in the past four games. Remove two rushing TDs and this goes from being the 12th-best matchup of the week to the 12th-worst.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB Jordan Howard, CHI DET 11011100000 ***
Howard takes on the Lions' porous rushing defense. This group has permitted 114 rushing yards (6th-most) and a rushing TD every 19.6 carries, which is the second-highest frequency. Through the air, backs have gone for 6.0 catches for 37.3 yards. None of the 24 catches since Week 5 have scored.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB Benny Cunningham, CHI DET 1003200000 ***
Cunningham played nearly 50 percent of the snaps last week and appears to have solidly taken over for Tarik Cohen. It's somewhat interesting that Cohen's downfall began when Mitchell Trubisky took over. At any rate, Detroit is a midrange defense for receiving backs. Look elsewhere for a better reward play.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Dontrelle Inman, CHI DET 004401000 **
Inman showed progress the last two years with the Chargers but was the odd man out with the Mike Williams selection. He had not played since Week 4 of this year but returned to finish with six catches for 88 yards on eight targets vs. Green Bay. The Lions have surrendered 12.5 catches (9th most), 164.3 yards (11th) and a TD every 16.7 receptions (22nd).
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Kendall Wright, CHI DET 004500000 ***
Wright has seen eight targets in each of the past two contests but hasn't managed to do anything with them. Those looks have resulted in just seven catches for 69 yards. Detroit is a borderline matchup. Play him at your own risk.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Joshua Bellamy, CHI DET 002300000 **
Bellamy was targeted seven times last week, catching two for 57 and a score. He's a wild gamble in any format. The Lions have given up top-11 figures for yardage and catches but only three WR TDs in the last four games.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Tre McBride III, CHI DET 002300000 *
McBride doesn't belong on any fantasy rosters at this time.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
TE Adam Shaheen, CHI DET 002300000 ***
Detroit has been dominant against tight ends lately, giving up only three catches per contest since Week 5. The rookie tight end doesn't belong on anyone's radar right now.

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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