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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 @CLE 10000024021 ***
The Browns haven't been shut-down defensively against the pass, but they haven't exactly been pushovers either. Flacco threw for two TDs the last time they met, but it was his first multiple-passing TD game against them in his last four. That 250 and 2 feels like his ceiling here.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB Bernard Pierce, BAL @CLE 701000000 ****
Should be a decent outing for Pierce against a Browns' defense that's giving up better than five yards a carry and has particularly struggled with power backs like Le'Veon Bell and Mark Ingram.
Update: Though officially listed as questionable, Pierce practiced in full on Friday and should be available to take what is becoming his regular role in the Baltimore backfield rotation.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB Justin Forsett, BAL @CLE 5004200000 ***
Given that the Browns are allowing 192 combo yards per game to opposing backs, Forsett's share of the Ravens' backfield workload should be worth a little something in fantasy circles this week.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Steve Smith, BAL @CLE 006600000 ***
Smith is turning "Napoleon Syndrome" and a dozen targets a game into a career rebirth in Baltimore. And while the Browns haven't erased opposing wideouts this year the prospect of Joe Haden draped all over Steve does dampen the fantasy enthusiasm a bit.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Torrey Smith, BAL @CLE 004500000 ***
Maybe the Browns tab Steve Smith as Cleveland's top threat and match him with Joe Haden. Maybe that opens up Torrey for more targets, which he could turn into a typical productive matchup against the Browns--he's scored or topped 75 yards in four straight meetings. Of course, until Steve stops hogging more than half the Ravens' WR targets it's all theory and tough to trust in a fantasy lineup.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
TE Dennis Pitta, BAL @CLE 006701000 ****
The Ravens love to force-feed their tight end, but Pitta is no Jimmy Graham. Then again, it's unlikely the Browns use Joe Haden on Pitta. Call it a wash and look for Pitta to turn his typical heavy target load into another productive fantasy outing.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
TE Owen Daniels, BAL @CLE 003300000 ***
In PPR leagues Daniels has value, as the TE spillover in Gary Kubiak's offense is running in the 4-5 catches per game range. However, don't get used to the #TBT Kubiak unleashed on us last week with Daniels' pair of TDs; he's still TE2 in Baltimore and should be treated as such.
  Opp fgaFGMxpaXPM ConFac
K Justin Tucker, BAL @CLE 1133 ***
Tucker has had multiple field goal attempts in each game this season, and in every road game dating back to Week 9 of last year. The Browns have a bend-don't-break defense, which should lend itself well to more opportunities for Tucker 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 Kirk Cousins, WAS @PHI 0000027020 ***
Damn shame RG3 isn't here to exploit this matchup; he's tossed multiple touchdowns in each of his four career meetings with the Eagles. Guess it's up to Cousins to operate Jay Gruden's offense against a Philly D that's surrendered multiple TDs to both Chad Henne and Andrew Luck. Chances are good.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB Alfred Morris, WAS @PHI 701000000 ****
Morris comes into this game with a streak of three strong showings against Philly, including 22-93 and 12-45-1 last year. He's also rushed for 176 yards and two TDs in two games this year and catches the Eagles fresh off of being gashed by the Colts to the tune of 149 RB rushing yards. However, Philly hasn't allowed a RB rushing score yet this year--two receiving scores, but that's certainly not Alf's milieu.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR DeSean Jackson, WAS @PHI 006901000 **
Damn shame DJax might not be available for this tilt, as you know he'd want to serve a healthy dose of revenge on his former club--and considering that the likes of Allen Hurns, Marqise Lee and TY Hilton have had their way with the Philly secondary, he'd be very likely to do so.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Andre Roberts, WAS @PHI 005601000 **
Roberts and Ryan Grant were the go-to downfield guys when DeSean Jackson went down with an injury. Jackson is iffy for this week; if he goes, Roberts works as the third receiver and if he doesn't Roberts sees an uptick in looks. He's the more reliable of the secondary options in Washington, at least until Jackson's availability becomes more clear.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Pierre Garcon, WAS @PHI 007800000 ***
Garçon went from trusted RG3 target (10-77) to persona non grata (1-12) with Kirk Cousins at the helm. Hard to believe that will continue once Cousins has a week of snaps with the first team, though thus far the receivers to get the best of Philly have been speed guys--a role Pierre doesn't play on this club.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
TE Niles Paul, WAS @PHI 006600000 ***
Paul has taken to Jordan Reed's role in this offense, with 11 targets, 99 yards and a touchdown on Kirk Cousins' watch. Lightly used Jack Doyle scored on the Eagles last week, no reason Paul can't keep up his run of success here.
  Opp fgaFGMxpaXPM ConFac
K Kai Forbath, WAS @PHI 1133 ***
Forbath feasted on the Jags at home; getting his kicks in Philly seems less likely.

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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