FANTASY FOOTBALL IN-SEASON FEATURES

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: SD 20, TB 34 (Line: TB by 3)

Players Updated : Robert Meachem

Players to Watch: Danario Alexander

The 4-4 Chargers finally got a win and hit the road where they are 2-2. The 4-4 Buccaneers are also 2-2 at home and these teams are fairly similar except the Bucs allow just one back to take all the action and also have two good wide receivers.

San Diego Chargers
Homefield: Qualcomm Stadium
Grass
  Opp Score   Opp Score
1 @OAK 22-14 10 @TB -----
2 TEN 38-10 11 @DEN -----
3 ATL 3-27 12 BAL -----
4 @KC 37-20 13 CIN -----
5 @NO 24-31 14 @PIT -----
6 DEN 24-35 15 CAR -----
7 BYE ----- 16 @NYJ -----
8 @CLE 6-7 17 OAK -----
9 KC 31-13 ----- ----- -----
News | Statistics | Roster
SD @ TB Rush Catch Pass
QB Philip Rivers 270,2
RB Dexter McCluster 10 5-40
RB Danny Woodhead 20 5-50
WR Stevie Johnson 5-40
TE Antonio Gates 4-50,1

Pregame Notes: Nothing like beating up on the visiting Chiefs to end a three game losing streak (that started after the first Chiefs match-up). The Chargers just went 1-1 in the last two weeks despite playing probably their two easiest games of the year. The next five games could end up as a coach killer because the Chargers will not likely be favored and so far have only shown an ability to beat the Chiefs.

Philip Rivers is throwing for fewer yards this year with 233 yards on average and only once topping 300 passing yards. He's been good with two touchdowns in most games but has been blanked twice already. Most of what Rivers is using are running backs for receivers only not the ones that you want. Rivers has become nothing more than a decent bye week filler and even then you need to hit the right week.

Ryan Mathews had a very encouraging 2011 when he gained 1546 total yards and six touchdowns. Some of that came from catching three to six passes every game and getting 13 to 20 carries in most weeks. Last week with a golden opportunity versus the visiting Chiefs, he was only allowed 13 runs that gained 67 yards (5.2 YPC) and two short catches.

And yet, Ronnie Brown is getting five to seven receptions in recent weeks and is the #2 receiver for the team. He is also running the ball more and his six carries in week nine totaled 11 touches against 15 for Mathews. That's a running back who's been released from two other teams for being old, slow and of no value being used almost equally with Mathews who doesn't even receive what he was getting in 2011 before being promised a bigger load by HC Norv Turner. Not to mention Jackie Battle still taking a few runs as well. In a fantasy sense this has neutered Mathews and made him only a marginal running back play. With a 3-5 record, it doesn't even make NFL sense.

Antonio Gates scored in his second game this year when the Chiefs came to town but only ended with three receptions for 43 yards in what has become his irreversible decline. Robert Meachem and Eddie Royal were held out last week though both were close to playing. They are tentatively expected back this week though neither has made any impact to the Chargers. Seyi Ajirotutu is back on the team but only recorded one catch for 28 yards last week and Danario Alexander caught three passes that gained 61 yards and that buys him more playing time. The coaches were impressed with Alexander and he has now made it one full game without suffering his season-ending leg/knee/hamstring injury.

The problem here is that Gates is a big step down from the past years. Mathews is being so limited that his fantasy value is marginal even in a great match-up and now there are a number of mediocre receivers for Rivers to choose from making any individual even less attractive and harder to forecast.


RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points SD 24 4 31 11 11 6
Preventing Fantasy Points TB 27 18 30 20 12 6

  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
QB Philip Rivers, SD @IND 10000027020 ***
QBs have averaged 303 yards and 1.5 TDs through two weeks against Indy. Rivers is a quality play against a defense that is decimated by injury.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB Melvin Gordon, SD @IND 8014300000 ***
Gordon has been a strong fantasy play in fantasy through two weeks, and this week he draws the statistically best opponent in the NFL -- by a wide margin. You know what to do from here.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Travis Benjamin, SD @IND 006901000 ***
Welcome to San Diego, Mr. Benjamin! An explosive Week 2 performance has fantasy owners abuzz with excitement for the sleeper receiver. His Week 3 matchup isn't ideal, on paper, with Indy being one of five teams to prevent WRs from scoring this year. That's because the Colts can't stop a running back.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Tyrell Williams, SD @IND 004800000 ***
Williams brings size (6-foot-4) to the offense and a good deal of upside. He's a fringe flex play each week at this point, having more worth in non-PPR formats.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
TE Hunter Henry, SD @IND 004401000 **
No Antonio Gates means Henry will have minute fantasy appeal in super-deep leagues or larger DFS contests. Indy has been moderately susceptible to TEs in the past two games.
  Opp fgaFGMxpaXPM ConFac
K Josh Lambo, SD @IND 3333 ***
San Diego's offense produces points, and the Colts' decimated defense gives a bevy of opportunities.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Homefield: Raymond James Stadium
Grass
  Opp Score   Opp Score
1 CAR 16-10 10 SD -----
2 @NYG 34-41 11 @CAR -----
3 @DAL 10-16 12 ATL -----
4 WAS 22-24 13 @DEN -----
5 BYE ----- 14 PHI -----
6 KC 38-10 15 @NO -----
7 NO 28-35 16 STL -----
8 @MIN 36-17 17 @ATL -----
9 @OAK 42-32 ----- ----- -----
News | Statistics | Roster
vs Rush Catch Pass
RB Doug Martin 110,1 3-30
RB Jacquizz Rodgers 30 4-30
WR Vincent Jackson 6-100,1
WR Louis Murphy 3-30
WR Cecil Shorts 3-40
TE Brandon Myers 6-60

Pregame Notes: The Buccaneers not only have won three of their last four games, they scored at least 28 points in each and averaged 36 points per game. It was not against the best of defenses in the league but then again neither are the Chargers. There is no chance that the Bucs will overtake the Falcons for the division but they could end up in the wild card race with an offense that is really starting to click. Aside from a couple of losses to the Falcons, the Bucs should be very competitive in all remaining games.

This offense could not get on track in 2011 and now it has two big stories to tell. First is Josh Freeman who passed for 16 touchdowns in his first eight games and that was with 11 scores over just the last four weeks. He has not thrown an interception since week six and is enjoying a rushing game that all defenses have to respect. Freeman has made his move into the top ten for quarterbacks.

The other story is all about Doug Martin who shredded the Raiders for 251 rush yards and four touchdowns last Sunday. It was the tenth best single game rushing total in NFL history. Over the last three weeks, all Martin has done is score seven times and gain 608 total yards. In three weeks. Granted, NO, MIN and OAK are not necessarily the best defenses in the league but neither are the Chargers. Martin has really turned up his level of play a few notches from the start of the season.

The Buccaneers now have two legitimately good wide receivers. Vincent Jackson scored six times already and produced over 80 yards in half his games. He tends to either have a big game with a touchdown or he lays an egg with no real middle ground. If he scored a touchdown, he gained at least 66 yards and if he did not, then he never gained more than 47 yards in that game. Mike Williams has been equally as effective with five touchdowns and two efforts over 100 yards himself. Tiquan Underwood provides little as the #3 and tight ends play no role in this offense but it doesn't matter. Williams and Jackson are providing plenty of bang and now Martin is turning into an elite running back.

The Charger defense is only average and the Bucs are starting to really come together and become something special. This should be another fine effort by the main weapons of the Buccaneers.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points TB 13 5 13 28 12 12
Preventing Fantasy Points SD 14 19 21 6 1 24

  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
QB Jameis Winston, TB LA 10100024011 ***
Winston was dreadful in Week 2 but should at least look competent against the Rams. Nevertheless, keep him firmly planted on your bench.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB Charles Sims, TB LA 4005300000 ***
An increased workload is expected, but the scat back is best used in PPR formats or as a wild daily flier. The Seahawks came close to getting something going on the ground last week, so there is some hope for Sims owners. He's a flex, at best.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB Jacquizz Rodgers, TB LA 2003200000 ***
Rodgers will be involved in the offense with Doug Martin sidelined. Fantasy owners have no justifiable reason to include the well-traveled vet in fantasy lineups.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB Doug Martin, TB LA 00000000 *
Martin is not expected to play in Week 3.

Update: As expected, Martin has been ruled out of action this week.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Mike Evans, TB LA 006601000 ***
Evans was targeted 17 times in Week 2, catching just six of them. He has a solid matchup in Week 3. The Bucs are limited without Doug Martin, and relying on Evans is their best chance at finding success. Play him as usual.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Adam Humphries, TB LA 004500000 ***
No writeup available
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Vincent Jackson, TB LA 004500000 ***
Jackson could see an uptick in work with Doug Martin sidelined, but the one-trick pony isn't a worthy play in PPR and is best left for DFS formats. The Rams can be exploited, but it's likely to come from Mike Evans.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
TE Cameron Brate, TB LA 005400000 ***
Tampa's starting tight end is a non-factor in fantasy football. Maybe he sees more looks without Doug Martin in the lineup, but that's not enough to warrant him being in yours.
  Opp fgaFGMxpaXPM ConFac
K Roberto Aguayo, TB LA 2222 ***
The Rams have shut the door on fantasy kickers so far, allowing only one three-pointer.

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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