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Predictions & Projections
David Dorey
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WEEK 14
2012
DEN at OAK (THU) *CHI at MIN MIA at SF SD at PIT
*ARI at SEA *DAL at CIN *NO at NYG *STL at BUF
*ATL at CAR *DET at GB NYJ at JAC *TEN at IND
*Updated BAL at WAS KC at CLE PHI at TB HOU at NE (MON)

Prediction: BAL 24, WAS 20 Line: (Pick)

Players to Watch: Ray Rice, Robert Griffin III

The 9-3 Ravens dropped an important game to the Steelers but are 4-2 in road games. The 6-6 Redskins are on a three game winning streak but each went against a divisional opponent.

Baltimore Ravens
Homefield: M&T Bank Stadium
Sport Turf
  Opp Score   Opp Score
1 CIN 44-13 10 OAK 55-20
2 @PHI 23-24 11 @PIT 13-10
3 NE 31-30 12 @SD 16-13
4 CLE 23-16 13 PIT 20-23
5 @KC 9-6 14 @WAS -----
6 DAL 31-29 15 DEN -----
7 @HOU 13-43 16 NYG -----
8 BYE ----- 17 @CIN -----
9 @CLE 25-15 ----- ----- -----
News | Statistics | Roster
BAL @ WAS Rush Catch Pass
QB Joe Flacco 220,2
RB Justin Forsett 20 2-10
RB Bernard Pierce 20
WR Steve Smith 6-80,1
WR Torrey Smith 5-90,1
TE Owen Daniels 4-50,1
TE Dennis Pitta 4-30,1
PK Justin Tucker 1 FG 3 XP

Pregame Notes: Ray Lewis may return to practice this week but he remains on the new IR and might be back to play in week 15. Terrell Suggs tore his triceps last week but has not been ruled out. The Ravens defense has been dominating in most games and held half of their previous opponents to only one offensive touchdown. The biggest concern this week is that the offense has sputtered every time it leaves Baltimore and the offensive play calling has been a head scratcher lately.

Joe Flacco continues to play out his disappointing season that has only thrown nine touchdowns over the last nine games and while he has a few 300 yard efforts, almost half his games end up with under 200 passing yards. Over six road games this year, Flacco has only thrown four touchdowns and never more than one per game.

The fantasy community has issued a common question asked by every Ray Rice owner - "what the hell?"

Rice was only given 12 carries in the loss to the Steelers though he scored once and gained 78 yards. Bernard Pierce really stepped up his workload with eight runs last week though he only gained 34 yards. Pierce ran nine times in San Diego the week prior when Rice was give 22 runs for 97 yards. Odder still was that Rice had five catches for 53 yards in the first meeting with the Steelers just three weeks ago and then only had one catch for five yards last Sunday. This all makes predicting what Rice will do very hard since his role is unrelated to his success. Coming off a great 2011 season, Rice has been mostly a disappointment this year and too rarely a difference maker.

The Ravens receivers are nothing special thanks mostly to Flacco and the play calling. Anquan Boldin scored against the Steelers but it was his first since the season opener. Torrey Smith came into the year with much promise and while he has scored in five games and topped 100 yards twice, he is just as inconsistent as the offense around him. He's not only been as bad as one catch for seven yards and as good as seven catches for 144 yards, but those came in consecutive weeks. It all makes projecting a tough call but at least this week they will face the Redskins and their bad secondary.

Don't over value what happened with the Redskins the last three weeks inside their own division every time. This is a game where Flacco must take advantage and Rice reprise at least his role as a receiver.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points BAL 18 11 14 18 5 5
Preventing Fantasy Points WAS 31 10 32 31 22 2

  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
QB Joe Flacco, BAL @NO 0000022011 ***
Flacco has found plenty of success against the NFC South this season, a total of 891 yards and 10 TDs in three games. While he's tended to be worse on the road, no need to shy away from him in New Orleans as the Ravens try to play keep-up with Drew Brees.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB Justin Forsett, BAL @NO 6014400000 ****
The Saints have surrendered 296 RB rushing yards in two games against AFC North foes this year, plus another 74 receiving. That touches on both elements that Forsett brings to the fantasy table, and on the heels of 20-112-2 against Tennessee the last time Baltimore took the field he's a solid fantasy play again this week.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB Bernard Pierce, BAL @NO 200000000 ***
Pierce battles with Lorenzo Taliaferro for relevancy in the Baltimore backfield, and against New Orleans there might just be enough left over for a second back to generate fantasy help. However, Taliaferro is the more likely back to be fantasy relevant, so keep Pierce on your bench.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB Lorenzo Taliaferro, BAL @NO 200000000 ***
The Ravens continue to waffle between Taliaferro and Bernard Pierce as the change-of-pace guy to Justin Forsett. Pierce won the battle last week, if you can call 31 yards on 8 carries "winning". Taliaferro has more fantasy upside as a bull of a goal line back, so if you're picking between the two he's the more palatable option.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Torrey Smith, BAL @NO 004601000 ****
Not that Torrey can't be fantasy relevant, but he's a little less consistent than Steve Smith and as such is a shade riskier as a fantasy play. Plus, the Saints have tended to allow one WR per week to post decent fantasy numbers so reaching down the Baltimore receiver depth chart isn't the shrewdest move.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Steve Smith, BAL @NO 004500000 ***
The Saints have allowed the opposing WR1 to be fantasy relevant in six of their last seven, and Steve is still Baltimore's WR1 so he gets the fantasy nod this week.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
TE Owen Daniels, BAL @NO 005600000 ***
The Saints gave up their first TE TDs since Week 1 last week, making this a tough matchup for Daniels to get fantasy traction in.
  Opp fgaFGMxpaXPM ConFac
K Justin Tucker, BAL @NO 3322 ***
The last three kickers to visit the SuperDome have tallied at least nine points, and three of Tucker's four double-digit efforts have come on the road. In theory, it's a solid opportunity for Tucker to get his kicks this week.

Washington Redskins
Homefield: FedEx Field
Grass
  Opp Score   Opp Score
1 @NO 40-32 10 BYE -----
2 @STL 28-31 11 PHI 31-6
3 CIN 31-38 12 @DAL 38-31
4 @TB 24-22 13 NYG 17-16
5 ATL 17-24 14 BAL -----
6 MIN 38-26 15 @CLE -----
7 @NYG 23-27 16 @PHI -----
8 @PIT 12-27 17 DAL -----
9 CAR 13-21 ----- ----- -----
News | Statistics | Roster
WAS vs BAL Rush Catch Pass
QB Robert Griffin III 30 240,1
RB Alfred Morris 70,1
WR Pierre Garcon 5-80,1
WR Santana Moss 2-30
WR Andre Roberts 4-50
TE Logan Paulsen 1-20
PK Kai Forbath 2 FG 2 XP

Pregame Notes: Maybe it was the rest from the week ten bye. Maybe it was just facing the weak NFC East. But for three weeks now, the Skins are winning games and getting much better production from all facets of the offense. One must suffer through a constant barrage of RG3-love by announcers to watch their games, but a lackluster team has finally reached .500 on the season with the promise of ending on a high note since they'll face the Eagles and Cowboys again in the final two weeks. This game is clearly their biggest challenge left on the schedule.

Robert Griffin III has four game left to play and has already set the record for rushing yards by a rookie quarterback with 714 yards, breaking the record of 706 yards set just last year by Cam Newton. RG3 rolled up eight passing scores against the Cowboys and Eagles but settled for just one last week and only 163 pass yards as well. He currently has 17 passing touchdowns on the year against only four interceptions. He's managed to avoid facing a good defense this year other than the Steelers who held him to 177 yards and one score as a passer and just eight yards as a rusher. This week will be interesting given the apparent breakthrough of the last three weeks.

Alfred Morris is on a two game stretch of 100+ rushing yard efforts but he's been much less productive in previous efforts and he has just six receptions on the year. Morris is a play for moderate rush yards in most weeks and scored only once in the last six games.

The receivers for the Redskins remain a mish-mash of mediocrity though Pierre Garcon is trying to change that with a score and 85+ yards in each of the last two games. He's roared back after missing eight games this year and apparently killed off Santana Moss who was scoring the best and yet never had a pass last week. Garcon is a must start now but no other wideouts or tight ends are.

Griffin has a chance to really cement his rookie season as a wild success with a win here. He's been largely average as a passer but added plenty of stick-moving rushing to the equation. Then he was a great passer for two weeks. Now he faces a top defense and gets a chance to prove himself outside of his own division.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points WAS 1 22 12 19 14 7
Preventing Fantasy Points BAL 8 20 12 9 28 4

  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
QB Robert Griffin III, WAS @SF 0000020012 ***
Still waiting for RG3 to take to this offense; a date with a San Francisco defense that's getting players back and held all quarterbacks not named Brees or Manning to one TD toss over the past two months... well, that's not going to help matters much.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB Alfred Morris, WAS @SF 6002200000 ***
Mark Ingram proved you can grind it out against the Niners, and Morris will get ample opportunity to do the same--though don't look for a TD against a defense that's allowed only five RB TDs all year, just one of them in San Francisco.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB Roy Helu, WAS @SF 2003200000 ***
Helu continues to be a PPR helper with three of five north of 40 receiving yards, including each of the past two. That's enough to make him a fringe fantasy contributor in performance based scoring systems.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR DeSean Jackson, WAS @SF 005700000 ****
The theory remains sound: Jackson's speed is the perfect fit for RG3's deep shots. It worked a couple weeks back in Minnesota, and it could work again--assuming RG3 keeps the starting gig long enough. Right now all the inconsistency does is makes DJax a fringe fantasy contributor.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Pierre Garcon, WAS @SF 003300000 ***
Garcon appears to have become an afterthought with RG3 at the helm; tough to trust an afterthought with a fantasy start at this juncture of the season.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Andre Roberts, WAS @SF 002200000 ***
Right now the Redskins' receiver rotation isn't seeing enough productivity for three fantasy options to emerge, and Roberts is most definitely queued up behind DeSean Jackson and Pierre Garcon.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
TE Jordan Reed, WAS @SF 003300000 *
A healthy Reed definitely comes into play against a 49ers defenses that's allowed three TE TDs in the past two games. Whether or not Reed is healthy, however, remains to be seen.
  Opp fgaFGMxpaXPM ConFac
K Kai Forbath, WAS @SF 1111 ***
Wanna blame RG3 for something else? Forbath has a total of nine points in three RG3 starts, less than half his average in non-RG3 starts. So if RG3 is at the helm again this week, get your kicks elsewhere.

WEEK 14
2012
DEN at OAK (THU) *CHI at MIN MIA at SF SD at PIT
*ARI at SEA *DAL at CIN *NO at NYG *STL at BUF
*ATL at CAR *DET at GB NYJ at JAC *TEN at IND
*Updated BAL at WAS KC at CLE PHI at TB HOU at NE (MON)

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