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Predictions & Projections
David Dorey
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WEEK 11
2012
MIA at BUF (THU) *CLE at DAL *NO at OAK TB at CAR
*ARI at ATL GB at DET NYJ at STL *CHI at SF (MON)
*BAL at PIT *IND at NE PHI at WAS Bye:
*UPDATED CIN at KC JAC at HOU *SD at DEN MIN, NYG, SEA, TEN

Prediction: ARI 14, ATL 27 (Line: ATL by 10)

Players Updated: Julio Jones, Michael Turner

Players to Watch: Julio Jones

The 4-5 Cardinals are on a five game losing free-fall while the 8-1 Falcons return home after their only loss on the year. With the offensive woes of the Cards, a trap game here seem impossible.

Arizona Cardinals
Homefield: University of Phoenix Stadium
Grass
  Opp Score   Opp Score
1 SEA 20-16 10 BYE -----
2 @NE 20-18 11 @ATL -----
3 PHI 27-6 12 STL -----
4 MIA 24-21 13 @NYJ -----
5 @STL 3-17 14 @SEA -----
6 BUF 16-19 15 DET -----
7 @MIN 14-21 16 CHI -----
8 SF 3-24 17 @SF -----
9 @GB 17-31 ----- ----- -----
News | Statistics | Roster
ARI @ ATL Rush Catch Pass
QB Carson Palmer 300,2
RB Jonathan Dwyer 30,1 1-10
WR Larry Fitzgerald 7-90,1
WR Michael Floyd 3-40
TE Rob Housler 4-50

Pregame Notes: The Cardinals come off their bye still wondering how it all went so wrong so fast. Five losses in a row and chances are this could continue. If the visiting Rams win in week 12, the Cardinals may actually go from 4-0 to 4-12. the last five games failed to produce more than 17 points. That's not going to get it done in Atlanta.

Kevin Kolb has been out since week six and early reports have him missing this week as well. John Skelton's been solid with yardage in his three starts with each topping 260 yards but he's only thrown two scores in that time. The Cardinals only scored 10 passing touchdowns this year and three of those came in the Dolphins matchup. Skelton did throw for 262 yards and a score in Minnesota so he's had some impact on the road. Not enough of course, but some.

Beanie Wells is slated to return in week 12 and claims that he has really gotten healthy with the time off and vows to return with a vengeance. Not going to take too much to look better than what's been happening in his absence. LaRod Stephens-Howling scored in two of the last three games but only posted 38 total yards against the 49ers and 59 yards at Green Bay. When Wells returns, Stephens-Howling returns to the special teams role he's had his entire career.

Larry Fitzgerald scored for the fourth time this year but his stats are well short of expectations and not changing much with Skelton instead of Kolb. These last three weeks have only seen him with no more htan 74 yards and the trip to MInnesota was just 29 yards on four catches. Andre Roberts' improved in those three games with never fewer than 65 yards in a game. Overall - there are just two wideouts of any note on this team and the rushing game is even more broken than usual.

The problem here, besides the Cardinals having nearly no offense, is that the Falcons best strength goes against the Cardinals only strength - wide receivers. This game is a hope for trash time and garbage yards.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points ARI 19 32 10 24 29 12
Preventing Fantasy Points ATL 14 24 4 27 2 3

  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
QB Carson Palmer, ARI @NYG 10000024020 *
Palmer threw for 302 against a solid San Diego defense, more than a tuneup for a Giants' defense fresh off being roasted by the Lions for 346 and two. What's not to like?
Update: Palmer was limited in practice all week by an elbow injury and officially is listed as questionable. However, there doesn't seem to be any concern in Cardinals camp about his availability this week, so you should be able to start him with confidence against the Giants.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB Andre Ellington, ARI @NYG 4005300000 ***
Phrases like "will wear a boot to calm it down" and "can't make it worse by playing on it" hardly inspire confidence. However, Ellington's 80 combo yards on 18 touches suggest he's capable of being a fantasy helper--especially against a defense that just served up 124 yards from scrimmage and a touchdown to Detroit's backfield committee.
Update: Ellington is listed as questionable after limiting his work this week in an effort to rest his sore foot. He was in a similar situation last week and received 18 touches against the Chargers, so you should be fine again this week.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Michael Floyd, ARI @NYG 0061001000 ***
The Giants just gave up 13-257-2 to Detroit wide receivers. Sure, one was Megatron but Floyd is an emerging stud in his own right, and the Lions' passing game is only slightly more diversified than Detroit's. No reason he can't follow up his 119-yard Week 1 performance with something equally fantasy-friendly.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Larry Fitzgerald, ARI @NYG 006801000 ***
Senior may not have been happy with the targets, but it's no secret that Michael Floyd is the new sheriff in Arizona's passing game. There's still room for Junior, however, especially when you note that Detroit just had both starting wideouts go for 90-plus yards against the G-Men secondary.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR John Brown, ARI @NYG 003400000 ***
It'll be difficult to bank on Brown's consistency as the third man in on Arizona's passing attack; then again, he did out-perform Larry Fitzgerald and out-score all other Cardinals wideouts. And against a Giants' secondary that surrendered 257 yards and two TDs to the position, there might just be enough to go around.
  Opp fgaFGMxpaXPM ConFac
K Chandler Catanzaro, ARI @NYG 1133 ***
Just between friends, when Catanzaro hits the upright does it go "bing"? All kidding aside, there are worse gigs than tacking on points for a prolific offense like Arizona's.

Atlanta Falcons
Homefield: Georgia Dome
FieldTurf
  Opp Score   Opp Score
1 @KC 40-24 10 @NO 27-31
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 vs ARI Rush Catch Pass
QB Matt Ryan 260,2
RB Steven Jackson 60,1 2-20
RB Jacquizz Rodgers 30 5-30
WR Devin Hester 2-30
WR Julio Jones 5-80
WR Roddy White 6-80,1
PK Matt Bryant 2 FG 3 XP

Pregame Notes: It was bound to happen eventually and it is not like the Saints don't already have a comfortable three game lead. It was hard to see where a loss was going to happen because the Falcons schedule is so easy that only eventual malaise allowed the loss.

Matt Ryan has been a near lock to score multiple touchdowns each week and he comes off a season best 411 yards in New Orleans. He's averaged 308 yards each week and generally plays bigger the tougher the matchup. The incoming Cards don't sport much offense but they have a decent defense that will make the Falcons work for the win. As good as the Cardinals have been versus the run, Ryan will need to pass to finish out this game in the win column.

Michael Turner comes off a horrible showing with only 15 yards on 13 runs in New Orleans and he's been pretty bad in three of the last four games that say him remain below 60 yards. Jacquizz Rodgers has offered some help as the third down back but overall this rushing attack is only getting worse as the season progresses. Turner should remain fresh later in the year because he doesn't hardly have to run at all each game. He just takes the handoff and tries to fall throught the offensive line.

Tony Gonzalez lulled them to sleep with three straight games with just 42 yards or less and no scores but then turned in 11 receptions for 122 yards and two scores last week. The oddity about Gonzo is that hels scored five times this year and four went in road games. His top three yardage games were also away from Atlanta.

The fantasy world held their breath when Julio Jones left the Saints game with a knee problem but he return later in the second half and ended with four catches for 75 yards. There has been no talk at all about the knee and since he returned to the game, he's expected to be completely fine again this week. Roddy White is usually the star at home but comes off a 114 yard effort in New Orleans.

The Cardinals defense has been top ten in most categories but their woeful offense is no help and the Falcons at home after a loss should be even better than the last few weeks.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points ATL 3 17 6 2 3 16
Preventing Fantasy Points ARI 8 6 18 2 11 26

  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
QB Matt Ryan, ATL @CIN 0000030021 ****
The Bengals allowed Joe Flacco to throw for 300 yards last week, while Ryan was throwing for 448. Also worth noting: Ryan has averaged 287 yards and two TDs over his last three seasons of games against the AFC, including 327 & 2 last year. So you have to like Matty Ice's chances of staying hot here.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB Steven Jackson, ATL @CIN 4001100000 ****
Jackson is still slated for the bulk of the workload, but four different backs handled the ball for Atlanta last weekend and Jackson may have been the least impressive of the quartet. Don't expect much against a pretty good Cincy run D.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB Jacquizz Rodgers, ATL @CIN 3001100000 ***
Rodgers used a nifty spin move to get into the end zone last week; had the Falcons seen more of that the previous few seasons they might not have felt the need to draft Devonta Freeman. Throw Rodgers in the blender with three other Atlanta backs, none of whom project to find much fantasy success in Cincy.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB Devonta Freeman, ATL @CIN 2002100000 ***
Eventually we'll be recommending Freeman as a fantasy starter and you'll be wondering what took so long. Right now, however, he's in a cluster behind Steven Jackson and even Jaquizz Rodgers and Antone Smith--both of whom managed to score last week. High risk and the reward just isn't there yet, especially against the Bengals.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Julio Jones, ATL @CIN 0061001000 ****
Outside of one long Steve Smith score the Bengals kept Baltimore's wideouts in check last week. Of course, Jones and Roddy White >>> Baltimore's Smiths and with Julio looking healthy he's an every-week starter regardless of foe.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Harry Douglas, ATL @CIN 002301000 **
Douglas and Devin Hester saw a somewhat surprising 13 targets in Week 1, and to their credit they parlayed those looks into 11 catches for 168 yards. Tough to bank on that production from the backup singers every week, however; wait for a more favorable matchup to work your way down the Falcons' receiver depth chart.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Roddy White, ATL @CIN 007800000 ***
White being the "other" receiver in Atlanta is like Duane Allman being the "other" guitar player in Derek and the Dominos. He also appears to be getting Tony Gonzalez's red zone looks, which only help his fantasy bottom line.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
TE Levine Toilolo, ATL @CIN 005400000 ***
Don't look at what Dennis Pitta did to the Bengals last week and think Toilolo can replicate that productivity; Pitta saw almost a month's worth of Toilolo's targets in that game. And with Roddy White the more likely red zone recipient, Toilolo is a risky fantasy play at best.
  Opp fgaFGMxpaXPM ConFac
K Matt Bryant, ATL @CIN 2222 ****
A 51-yarder to tie and a 52-yarder to win buys Bryant a lot of cache, both with the Falcons and with fantasy owners. With Atlanta's offense firing on all cylinders he belongs in a fantasy lineup on an every-week basis.

WEEK 11
2012
MIA at BUF (THU) *CLE at DAL *NO at OAK TB at CAR
*ARI at ATL GB at DET NYJ at STL *CHI at SF (MON)
*BAL at PIT *IND at NE PHI at WAS Bye:
*UPDATED CIN at KC JAC at HOU *SD at DEN MIN, NYG, SEA, TEN

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