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Predictions & Projections
David Dorey
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WEEK 13
2012
NO at ATL (THU) *CLE at OAK *MIN at GB *SEA at CHI
*ARI at NYJ HOU at TEN NE at MIA *SF at STL
CAR at KC *IND at DET *PHI at DAL TB at DEN
*UPDATED *CIN at SD *JAC at BUF *PIT at BAL NYG at WAS (MON)

Prediction: CIN 22, SD 23 (Line: SD by 3)

Players Updated: Mohamed Sanu

Players to Watch: Mohamed Sanu, Antonio Gates, Ryan Mathews

The 6-5 Bengals are on a three game winning streak and are 3-2 in road games. The Chargers are 4-7 and have lost their last three games including a 2-3 home record. This is a real toss-up sort of game since the Chargers are overdue for a win and the Bengals are probably not as good as their record suggests.

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 34-10
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 @ SD Rush Catch Pass
QB Andy Dalton 270,2
RB BenJarvus Green-Ellis 50
RB Cedric Peerman 40 1-10
WR A.J. Green 7-110,1
WR Marvin Jones 3-40
WR Mohamed Sanu
TE Jermaine Gresham 5-40,1
PK Mike Nugent 2 FG 2 XP

Pregame Notes: The Bengals are three games in back of the Ravens and highly unlikely to catch them with only five games left to play. But there is still a shot at a wildcard since there are only three winning records in the AFC after the divisional leaders. The remaining schedule is pretty brutal though and the Bengals have only beaten one team with a winning record. This will be the only road trip out west for the Bengals this season.

Andy Dalton's had a very good sophomore season with 23 passing touchdowns but his yardage has scaled back in recent weeks. He hasn't topped 300 yards in five games and while he threw nine touchdowns over the last three games, none contained more than 230 passing yards. That mostly reflects how well games have been going for the Bengals and that the rushing effort has recently been much better.

BenJarvus Green-Ellis comes off a season best 129 yards on 19 runs against the Raiders and he rolled up 100 yards on the Chiefs in the previous game. But he rarely went over 60 yards in other games and scored only three times over the first nine games. Three of his five scores came in road games. Notable too is that Cedric Peerman is becoming a bigger factor in the backfield with eight carries in each of the last two games. He gained 61 yards in Kansas City and then 75 yards against the Raiders. Peerman is running with speed and moves that BGE simply does not have. These final games of the year is an audition of sorts to see if Peerman can ever become more than just a back-up in Cincy. Chances are that BGE won't take the same primary role in 2013.

A.J. Green gained 111 yards on three catches last week but failed to score for the first time all year. The Raiders loaded up to deny him a touchdown and in the process gave up two scores to Mohamed Sanu who only caught five passes for 29 yards. That makes three straight games with a score for Sanu who still has yet to break 50 yards in any game.

The Bengals defense has really shined in recent weeks though mostly against weak opponents. The Chargers are only average on defense but play better when at home. They've allowed only two rushing touchdowns in San Diego and no runner has topped 100 rushing yards against them including Jamaal Charles, Ray Rice and Chris Johnson. Look for Dalton to need to do more to keep this game competitive.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points CIN 10 24 3 15 18 17
Preventing Fantasy Points SD 17 15 22 5 2 26

  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
QB Andy Dalton, CIN BAL 0000027020 ***
Dalton has multiple touchdown tosses in four straight home games and three straight overall, plus he took the Ravens for 274 & 2 in the earlier meeting between these clubs. Baltimore has held both Matthew Stafford and Tom Brady to single scoring strikes the past two weeks, however, so if Dalton is to help both your fantasy team to a title and his Bengals to the postseason he'll have to earn it.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
QB Jason Campbell, CIN BAL 20000023010 ***
Campbell was knocked out of the earlier meeting with Pittsburgh after 124 yards, with Brandon Weeden finishing out the game for Cleveland. It'll be Campbell at least to start this time around, against a Steelers squad with a faint playoff heartbeat. Pittsburgh hasn't allowed more than 251 passing yards since Weeden and Campbell combined for 333 in that Week 12 game, plus Campbell has just one passing score in the past two games combined. In other words, not a whole lot of optimism for Campbell this week.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB Giovani Bernard, CIN BAL 4007401000 ***
Gio had 95 yards from scrimmage and a touchdown in the earlier meeting with Baltimore. His ability to create via the passing game as well as on the ground make him the safer fantasy play as he shares the workload with BenJarvus Green-Ellis.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB BenJarvus Green-Ellis, CIN BAL 300000000 ***
Baltimore has allowed five RB rushing scores in the past four games; since it takes a short-yardage plunge for BJGE to create fantasy value out of his job-share gig, that the Ravens have been dented of late is somewhat reassuring.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR A.J. Green, CIN BAL 0061001000 ****
Green has scored or topped 90 yards in four straight, and he did both as part of his 8-151-1 showing in the earlier meeting with Baltimore. Recency, primacy... either way you slice it, Green's a great play this week.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Marvin Jones, CIN BAL 005400000 ***
Jones and Mohamed Sanu have each scored in the past fortnight, but neither did anything in the earlier meeting with Baltimore--nor should either be banked on for fantasy help here.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Mohamed Sanu, CIN BAL 002400000 ***
Sanu and Marvin Jones have each scored in the past fortnight, but neither did anything in the earlier meeting with Baltimore--nor should either be banked on for fantasy help here.
  Opp fgaFGMxpaXPM ConFac
K Mike Nugent, CIN BAL 3333 ****
The Nuge has but one double-digit game on the season, hasn't topped six points in a month, and mustered only five in the earlier meeting with Baltimore. If Cincy is to secure a playoff spot, they'll likely do so relying on something other than Nugent's leg.

San Diego Chargers
Homefield: Qualcomm Stadium
Grass
  Opp Score   Opp Score
1 @OAK 22-14 10 @TB 24-34
2 TEN 38-10 11 @DEN 23-30
3 ATL 3-27 12 BAL 13-16
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 vs CIN Rush Catch Pass
QB Philip Rivers 240,2
RB Donald Brown 30 3-20
RB Ronnie Brown 10 4-20
RB Ryan Mathews 60 3-20
RB Danny Woodhead 10 3-20
WR Danario Alexander 5-80
WR Malcom Floyd 4-60,1
TE Antonio Gates 4-50,1
PK Nick Novak 3 FG 2 XP

Pregame Notes: The Chargers are better than their record, at least at home where they nearly beat the Ravens last week and clobbered the Chiefs in the previous home venue. This team is not going to the playoffs and has to be a lock for a coaching overhaul in the offseason at the very least. That may play a role in future road efforts but at home the Chargers are still trying to bring it and will be at least competitive in this game.

Philip Rivers usually throws two scores in every game but his 18 touchdowns go against 14 interceptions and four lost fumbles. His yardage tends to be moderate and rises only when faced with a very weak secondary. Rivers has topped 260 passing yards only once in the last six games.

Ryan Mathews is the primary back but that only means around 17 or so carries per game and maybe three or four catches. Mathews scored only once all year and that week five touchdown was the only running back score in the last seven games. Ronnie Brown plays third downs for a few catches and carries but this is a Norv Turner offense that amazingly devoid of a decent backfield. They won't run Mathews more than about 18 times per game ever though he is clearly the best player for the job. Brown may pass block well but has no burst and no way to tack on any yards after he catches the ball.

The downward spiral of Antonio Gates continues with a season low two receptions for 13 yards last week. Unless the Chargers are facing a seriously weak secondary, Gates has just been little more than a blocker. He and Malcom Floyd are the only receivers of any consistent note each week. Floyd scored three times over the last four games and usually ends up right around 60 yards in most games. With Gates in such a decline, the two starting wideouts have to provide almost all the receiving production that doesn't end up with the running backs.

The Bengals secondary has been very good and ranks top ten in most categories. They've only allowed 13 passing scores in ten games and only once allowed over 300 passing yards. Their weakness is much more against the run but the Chargers have only a mediocre offense for rushing.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points SD 19 13 26 11 20 6
Preventing Fantasy Points CIN 7 24 5 23 19 20

  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
QB Philip Rivers, SD KC 0000030020 *****
Rivers ripped KC for 392 & 3 in the earlier meeting. The Chiefs may be resting regulars, and by the time this one kicks off the Chargers may be out of the playoff mix as well. But as it stands now the Bolts still have a chip and a chair, which means Rivers will take his shots--and that's a good thing, fantasy-wise.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
QB Kellen Clemens, SD KC 0000017002 ***
Clemens has just one game with multiple passing scores in his last five, and he hasn't topped 250 yards all season. Oh, and he's facing a Seattle defense that's allowed fewer fantasy points to quarterbacks than any other. This isn't going to end well.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB Ryan Mathews, SD KC 8013200000 ****
Mathews fell three feet shy of a third straight game with 100 yards and a touchdown, but clearly he's been hot of late. He scored in the earlier meeting with KC and should see ample opportunity to do so here as well--maybe even against backup defenders.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB Donald Brown, SD KC 7012200000 ***
Trent Richardson saw more touches but Brown was more effective last week; same thing happened when the Jags and Colts met back in Week 4, and in all likelihood that's what's on tap this week as well.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB Danny Woodhead, SD KC 2003400000 ***
Woodhead scored twice in the earlier meeting with KC, and while he isn't taking a bite out of Ryan Mathews' work in the ground game he's contributing plenty as a pass-catcher. He's a must-start in PPR formats and a solid play in just about every other format, especially if the Chiefs turn to backups early on.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Keenan Allen, SD KC 0061001000 ***
Allen has five touchdowns in his last three games and posted back-to-back 100-yard efforts prior to that--one of them in Kansas City. He'll be Philip Rivers' go-to guy once again, with the Chargers playing for something and the Chiefs quite possibly mailing it in.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Eddie Royal, SD KC 003300000 ***
Royal's 56 yard outing with a touchdown in Week 9 is the closest thing a San Diego secondary receiver has had to a fantasy helper since the team's Week 8 bye. You don't want to dig too deep into this matchup for fantasy help.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Vincent Brown, SD KC 002300000 ***
Brown has done almost nothing since a big 117 yard effort in Week 5. He's still full of potential... and potential still means "hasn't really done anything yet."
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
TE Ladarius Green, SD KC 002301000 ***
Green may have the Bolts' last two TE TDs, including one against the Chiefs earlier this year, but he's barely taking a bite out of Antonio Gates' targets and can't be banked on for fantasy productivity.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
TE Antonio Gates, SD KC 005400000 ***
Ladarius Green has the Chargers' last two TE TDs, including one against the Chiefs in the earlier meeting, but it's been Gates getting the targets of late. The Chiefs have given up a couple TE TDs over the past month, and if they're going to be mailing it in that bodes well for Gates.
  Opp fgaFGMxpaXPM ConFac
K Nick Novak, SD KC 2244 ***
The Chiefs weren't mailing it in back in Week 12 when Novak put up 11 points on them. He's reached double digits in four of six overall as well as four of six at home, and with the Chargers clinging to playoff hopes he'll get a chance to put up big numbers again.

WEEK 13
2012
NO at ATL (THU) *CLE at OAK *MIN at GB *SEA at CHI
*ARI at NYJ HOU at TEN NE at MIA *SF at STL
CAR at KC *IND at DET *PHI at DAL TB at DEN
*UPDATED *CIN at SD *JAC at BUF *PIT at BAL NYG at WAS (MON)

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