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Predictions & Projections
David Dorey
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WEEK 12
2012
HOU at DET (THU) *BAL at SD *MIN at CHI *SF at NO
NE at NYJ (THU) BUF at IND *OAK at CIN *STL at ARI
WAS at DAL (THU) DEN at KC PIT at CLE TEN at JAC
*UPDATED *ATL at TB GB at NYG SEA at MIA *CAR at PHI (MON)

Prediction: OAK 20, CIN 27 (Line:CIN by 8)

Players Updated: Darren McFadden, Andrew Hawkins

Players to Watch: Cedric Peerman, Denarius Moore

The 3-7 Raiders are on a three game losing streak and have a 1-4 road record. The 5-5 Bengals won their last two and are only 2-3 at home.The Raiders on the road tend to play great opponents close because it is a near trap game or they get handled by 35, 31 or 22 points. Bengals not likely to be trapped.

Oakland Raiders
Homefield: McAfee Coliseum
Grass
  Opp Score   Opp Score
1 SD 14-22 10 @BAL 20-55
2 @MIA 13-35 11 NO 17-38
3 PIT 34-31 12 @CIN -----
4 @DEN 6-37 13 CLE -----
5 BYE ----- 14 DEN -----
6 @ATL 20-23 15 KC -----
7 JAC 26-23 16 @CAR -----
8 @KC 26-16 17 @SD -----
9 TB 32-42 ----- ----- -----
News | Statistics | Roster
OAK @ CIN Rush Catch Pass
QB Matt Schaub 220,2
RB Darren McFadden
RB Marcel Reece 60,1 6-50
WR James Jones 3-50,1
WR Denarius Moore 5-70
PK Sebastian Janikowski 2 FG 2 XP

Pregame Notes: It is bad enough that the Raiders have lost their last three games, but they allowed 42, 55 and 38 points in the process. The wheels are wobbling again and mostly because of the defense. The owner may have gone to the locker room after the loss to the Saints to voice his unhappiness but that doesn't magically change that this is yet another lost season for the Raiders and they are playing like they realize that it is already over.

Carson Palmer hasn't often been a winning quarterback but he's made a nice fantasy starter if you can live with a couple of interceptions. He has seven games at or over 300 yards and has thrown for multiple touchdowns in each of the last four games. Most road games tend to be lower scoring if not lower in yardage as well but he remains a decent fantasy play weekly from being so consistently at 300 yards or more.

Darren McFadden may return this week but HC Dennis Allen remains vague about his status and week 12 was a target date for him to return after missing two weeks. A notoriously slow healer, only late week practices can help clear up his status this week if in fact he doesn't end up as a game time decision. In his place Marcel Reece has performed admirably if not actually better than McFadden. Reece produced 104 total yards and seven receptions in Baltimore and then 193 total yards last week against the Saints. I'll assume a third start for Reece until there is a concrete reason to change it.

Brandon Myers not only was able to immediately return from his concussion, but he had one of his best games with six receptions for 55 yards and a touchdown against the Saints. That's three scores in the last three games and he's been remarkably consistent with around 50 or 60 yards each week.

Darrius Heyward-Bey was questionable last week but played and ended up with 69 yards on four catches versus the Saints which is sort of a default when anyone plays them. The miracle last week was that Denarius Moore only caught one pass for nine yards on his nine targets. Moore has been the best receiver for the Raiders and the only one that has topped 100 yards. The surprising part of this offense is that Palmer passes for up to 414 yards in a game and yet there has been only once that anyone had over 100 receiving yards. Rod Streater and Juron Criner figure in as minor contributors but this offense is all about throwing to Moore, Heyward-Bey and Myers.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points OAK 9 9 18 8 9 30
Preventing Fantasy Points CIN 10 26 5 25 20 24

  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
QB Derek Carr, OAK @DEN 0000023022 ***
Carr threw for 192 and 2 in the earlier meeting with Denver. He's had multiple TDs in two of his last three games but the yardage has been substandard and facing a Broncos team looking to lock down a first-round bye won't help his prospects.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB Latavius Murray, OAK @DEN 6002200000 ***
The Raiders hadn't gotten around to using Murray the last time they faced Denver; he saw just two of the teams 13 rushing attempts. Now he's the 20-plus carry lead dog, and all four 20-carry backs have all either scored or topped 100 yards against the Broncos. So we're sayin' there's a chance.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB Darren McFadden, OAK @DEN 3001100000 ***
Wouldn't it be fitting if McFadden got hurt in his Raiders' swan song? One more trip through the training room, getting nostalgic with the whirlpool, all while watching Latavius Murray highlights on the TV.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR James Jones, OAK @DEN 006401000 **
Jones has scored in back-to-back games, though his catches dwindled from eight to one last week. At that rate his prospects for this week don't look particularly good.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Andre Holmes, OAK @DEN 003300000 ***
No Raiders receiver topped 30 yards the last time they faced the Broncos, and only two have topped 60 in Denver's last seven. Holmes might be the most frequently targeted Raider, but the ceiling is pretty low for his fantasy prospects.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
TE Mychal Rivera, OAK @DEN 006501000 ****
Rivera might be the best (only?) fantasy play to emerge from the Oakland passing game this weekend. He scored in the previous meeting with Denver (part of a 6-64-1 showing), has 15-153-1 the past three games, and faces a Broncos defense that's given up TE TDs in back-to-back games and seven of their nine TE scores in the second half of the season.
  Opp fgaFGMxpaXPM ConFac
K Sebastian Janikowski, OAK @DEN 1122 ***
SeaBass goes 14 games without a fantasy helper, then drops 14 on an unsuspecting Buffalo defense. The Broncos aren't likely to be as friendly; they held Janikowski to something closer to his usual, five points in the earlier meeting, and are a good bet to do so again.

Cincinnati Bengals
Homefield: Paul Brown Stadium
FieldTurf
  Opp Score   Opp Score
1 @BAL 13-44 10 NYG 31-13
2 CLE 34-27 11 @KC 28-6
3 @WAS 38-31 12 OAK -----
4 @JAC 27-10 13 @SD -----
5 MIA 13-17 14 DAL -----
6 @CLE 24-34 15 @PHI -----
7 PIT 17-24 16 @PIT -----
8 BYE ----- 17 BAL -----
9 DEN 23-31 ----- ----- -----
News | Statistics | Roster
CIN vs OAK Rush Catch Pass
QB Andy Dalton 250,2
RB Cedric Peerman 40
WR A.J. Green 7-90,1
WR Greg Little 3-40
WR Mohamed Sanu 4-50
TE Jermaine Gresham 4-60,1
PK Mike Nugent 2 FG 3 XP

Pregame Notes: The remaining schedule is no cake walk for the Bengals and this week is likely as good as it gets. Ending at .500 will be a challenge but the offense is getting better and the defense can surprise. But in the end, this offense is pretty much Dalton-to-Green and everything else is a distant second. Fortunately, almost no one can stop the connection.

Andy Dalton is enjoying a great sophomore year wit a score in each of the last nine games and a total of 20 passing scores on the year. Of course half of those went to A.J. Green. Dalton threw over 300 yards three times but only once since week three and five of his last seven games produced less than 250 yards. He's a lock to throw a touchdown to A.J. Green but not much else is a guarantee and may or may not happen.

BenJarvus Green-Ellis comes off his best game of the year when he ran for 101 yards and a touchdown on 25 carries in Kansas City. He's been far more likely to turn in around 50 or 60 yards every week and scored only four times so far. He also takes no role as a receiver. Cedric Peerman is being used more in recent weeks with six carries against the Giants and eight runs for 75 yards on the Chiefs. He'll continue to erode the meager stats of Green-Ellis.

Jermaine Gresham is the #2 receiver for the Bengals and consistent with around 60 yards in most games and four scores on the season. He always has at least three catches and has produced as many as six receptions for 108 yards.

A.J. Green continues his nine game streak with at least one touchdown - that's is ridiculously rare for any receiver. He's as close to unstoppable as 2012 has seen. Green turns in 80 to 180 yards in almost every game and - always scores. They should just spot him one touchdown and give him the first half off. No other wideout matters much though Mohamed Sanu is making his move with a touchdown in each of the last two games. He still has yet to gain more than 47 yards though. Andrew Hawkins missed last week with a knee injury he suffered in Friday practice and is uncertain this week.

The Raiders rank poorly against all categories other than wide receivers where they are average. They rank among the worst against running backs and should give BGE his final decent game of the year.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points CIN 10 26 3 16 19 19
Preventing Fantasy Points OAK 28 32 15 28 31 18

  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
QB Andy Dalton, CIN @PIT 0000027021 ***
The Steelers have given up 300-plus passing yards in three straight games and multiple touchdown tosses in eight of the last nine. That stretch includes Dalton's 302 and 2 (with a rushing TD to boot), though in two subsequent games Andy has a total of 263 and 2. The tiebreaker is Dalton's penchant for coming up small in big games, so while there's upside in the matchup you'll likely want to find fantasy help elsewhere.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB Jeremy Hill, CIN @PIT 9001100000 ****
Hill averaged almost six yards a carry in limited work against the Steelers in the earlier matchup; since then he's racked up a pair of 140-yard games--still at a six-yards per carry pace. Hill is on a roll, and while Pittsburgh has been relatively solid against the run they've shown a weakness for bigger backs like Arian Foster, Mark Ingram... and, this week, Hill.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB Giovani Bernard, CIN @PIT 2003200000 ***
Gio has become the complimentary guy, and in a tough matchup he's a far riskier fantasy play than the Bengals' current bell cow, Jeremy Hill.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR A.J. Green, CIN @PIT 005801000 *
Green gashed the Steelers for 11-224-1 just three weeks ago. He's banged up coming out of the win over Denver, but all indications are he'll play--and against a secondary that's allowed three 130-plus yard receivers in the past month, all indications are he'll perform well.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Mohamed Sanu, CIN @PIT 004500000 ***
It was all AJ Green the last time Cincy faced Pittsburgh, and that's become typical of the Bengals passing game as Sanu hasn't scored since Week 12 or topped 50 yards since Week 9. He's never broken 40 yards against the Steelers; no reason to believe that changes here.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
TE Jermaine Gresham, CIN @PIT 005601000 ***
There's hope for Gresham this week against a Steelers defense that's allowed six TE TDs in the past eight games. Gresham has scored in two of the last three, including last week and the earlier matchup with Pittsburgh. At this juncture there's no WR2 to AJ Green, so Gresham could fill that opening.
  Opp fgaFGMxpaXPM ConFac
K Mike Nugent, CIN @PIT 2222 ***
The Nuge is coming off his best two-game stretch of the season; the Steelers have allowed six field goals in their last two. Almost makes you believe he's a safe bet to improve upon his three point performance in the earlier meeting with Pittsburgh in Week 14. Almost.

WEEK 12
2012
HOU at DET (THU) *BAL at SD *MIN at CHI *SF at NO
NE at NYJ (THU) BUF at IND *OAK at CIN *STL at ARI
WAS at DAL (THU) DEN at KC PIT at CLE TEN at JAC
*UPDATED *ATL at TB GB at NYG SEA at MIA *CAR at PHI (MON)

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