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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: MIA 10, SF 27 Line: (SF by 10)

Players to Watch: Colin Kaepernick

The 5-7 Dolphins are back in the AFC East cellar along with every other non-Tom Brady team. The Fins are just 2-4 on the road and travel to face the 8-3-1 49ers coming off their loss in St. Louis. The 49ers are 4-1-1 at home.

Miami Dolphins
Homefield: Dolphins Stadium
Grass
  Opp Score   Opp Score
1 @HOU 10-30 10 TEN 3-37
2 OAK 35-13 11 @BUF 14-19
3 NYJ 20-23 12 SEA 24-21
4 @ARI 21-24 13 NE 16-23
5 @CIN 17-13 14 @SF -----
6 STL 17-14 15 JAC -----
7 BYE ----- 16 BUF -----
8 @NYJ 30-9 17 @NE -----
9 @IND 20-23 ----- ----- -----
News | Statistics | Roster
MIA @ SF Rush Catch Pass
QB Ryan Tannehill 10 220,1
RB Frank Gore 100,1 3-20
WR Danny Amendola

Pregame Notes: One more win to equal 2011 and two more to make HC Joe Philbin's first season better than the last one for the Fins. But with road trips to San Francisco and New England left to play, a .500 season is still out of reach realistically. The progress made with the offense has not been great and Reggie Bush is in his final year and may not be resigned.

Ryan Tannehill may have been Mike Sherman's quarterback at Texas A&M where he threw 29 touchdowns but in the NFL he's only been good enough to toss seven scores over 12 games. He failed to throw any touchdowns in six different matchups. This has been a bottom two passing offense all year and has not improved or shown any player development. The fact that Brian Hartline once caught 12 passes for 253 yards boggles the mind compared to everything else that has happened.

Hartline remains the top wideout here but he still has just the one touchdown in his big game and tends to disappear against a good defense. Davone Bess also has one touchdown this entire season and rarely every tops 50 yards. Anthony Fasano is the leading scorer among receivers since he caught three touchdowns and yet even he has declined to where he has only one catch per game since week six.

This is a running back offense even though they do not actually have a really good one. Daniel Thomas is making the case for more playing time next year, especially if Reggie Bush leaves. But even Thomas only scored four times this year and in most games remains well under 40 yards. An inability to pass well coupled with a rushing attack comprised of a couple of average runners is not a good equation for playing in San Francisco this week.

If the Fins can score any touchdowns it will be a success. Home games against the Bills and Jaguars the following two weeks will allow some minor value for Reggie Bush and perhaps Daniel Thomas but otherwise this team is devoid of any fantasy value and doesn't even make many turnovers to at least allow opposing defenses to score points.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points MIA 31 4 31 32 31 25
Preventing Fantasy Points SF 2 2 4 6 1 8

  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
QB Brock Osweiler, MIA DET 0000024022 *
Osweiler appears in line to start again after a monster fantasy performance. Detroit, returning from its bye week, comes to town and is among the tougher units vs. quarterbacks. Prior to Aaron Rodgers going for 35.1 fantasy points in Week 5, this group gave up no more than 21 points (Dak Prescott) to Tom Brady, Jimmy G. and Sam Darnold. Osweiler wasn't asked to push the ball down the field and relied on big plays via yards after the catch through the short-area passing game in Week 6. He flirts with playability this week because of the three prominent starters on a one-week hiatus.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB Frank Gore, MIA DET 701000000 ***
The geriatric one looked totally gassed late last week when Kenyan Drake came in for the fumble at the goal line. It will be interesting to see how his workload is handled in Week 7. Gore faces a great matchup for yardage (2nd) but terrible for rushing scores (5th worst) against the visiting Lions.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB Kenyan Drake, MIA DET 3004300000 **
Drake *should* have added a touchdown to his stat line last week if not for a case of the butterfingers. He faces a Lions defense that has given up a boatload of yardage but only one touchdown over the last 91 carries. Through the air, one in 12 catches by RBs has found the end zone, though. How Frank Gore's workload is managed will be interesting to watch. Drake could be a sneaky play.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Danny Amendola, MIA DET 005501000 *
Green Bay embarrassed this defense in Week 5 before Detroit's bye, but it was tough sledding for the position prior to that game. Detroit could get DE Ziggy Ansah back this week, which may force more quick passing by Miami.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Albert Wilson, MIA DET 004700000 ***
Wilson's big-play skills are being put to the test with Brock Osweiler starting. The Dolphins limited his downfield throws last week and forced the receivers to pick up the slack with yards after the catch via screens and short-area routes. The Lions have permitted receivers just three TDs on only 38 receptions in the last four games. Only Jacksonville ranks a tougher matchup.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Kenny Stills, MIA DET 002400000 ***
Detroit, outside of the Green Bay game, has done a fairly good job at limiting receivers. Stills is a always a threat to find the end zone, which makes him a lotto ticket in dire situations. Brock Osweiler starting again deserves to draw skepticism. They hooked up for a lone 35-yard play last week.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
TE Mike Gesicki, MIA DET 003201000 *
There is no reason to play the promising rookie at this time unless you want to play the odds against a team that has given up a TD to tight ends every 6.33 receptions since Week 1.
  Opp fgaFGMxpaXPM ConFac
K Jason Sanders, MIA DET 2233 ***
No writeup available

San Francisco 49ers
Homefield: Monster Park
Grass
  Opp Score   Opp Score
1 @GB 30-22 10 STL 24-24
2 DET 27-19 11 CHI 32-7
3 @MIN 13-24 12 @NO 31-21
4 @NYJ 34-0 13 @STL 13-16
5 BUF 45-3 14 MIA -----
6 NYG 3-26 15 @NE -----
7 SEA 13-6 16 @SEA -----
8 @ARI 24-3 17 ARI -----
9 BYE ----- ----- ----- -----
News | Statistics | Roster
vs Rush Catch Pass
RB Alfred Morris 70,1
WR Pierre Garcon 5-80,1
PK Robbie Gould 2 FG 3 XP

Pregame Notes: Apparently the 49ers have a new nemesis after losing in overtime to the Rams who tied them in San Francisco only three weeks prior. The 49ers still have a half-game lead for the #2 seed but will be tested with road games left to play in New England and Seattle. The 49ers need every win they can get and coming off a loss should ensure that they don't take it too easy on the visiting Fins.

Colin Kaepernick remains the starting quarterback but he comes off his first scoreless game with only 208 passing yards. But he also added nine runs for 84 yards. If David Akers could still hit a 51-yard field goal, Kaepernick would have been 3-0 as a starter. The 49ers are willing to let him continue to develop to the great displeasure of Alex Smith who is now the subject of speculation that he may be traded in the offseason. Fortunately for Kaepernick, he has a meeting with the Patriots that should make him look like a good passer in week 15.

Kendall Hunter is gone but Brandon Jacobs was hardly much of a replacement running just four times to gain six yards. And Frank Gore was used as the goal line back so the Jacobs experiment is not going all that well. There is talk that they won't make LaMichael James inactive this week though there is still a concern about how good he can be in this offense. James is actually better suited to a wide open offense with a big-time passing attack. Not a power rushing scheme that now has a quarterback who takes plenty of rushing attempts as well.

Vernon Davis was happy with Kaepernick was throwing his six completions for 83 yards and one score against the Bears. Now two weeks later with only two catches to show, Davis is back to grumbling and is unhappy with his much reduced role. Davis had no catches in week 12 in New Orleans and then was thrown just three passes in St. Louis.

Mario Manningham injured his shoulder last week and no word has been given about his status but he has no real fantasy value anyway and only Michael Crabtree can be relied on for any decent fantasy points. He's coming off his second 100 yard game of the year and is the most targeted receiver by Kaepernick.

This week won't take a lot of points to win. And the rushing effort is likely to be held in check at least a bit and allow Kaepernick a home game against a below average defense. The 49ers defense meshes very well against what the Fins are bringing and that should mean not much passing will be needed this week.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points SF 12 9 25 5 11 12
Preventing Fantasy Points MIA 19 5 18 13 23 24

  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
QB C.J. Beathard, SF LAR 10000026022 ***
Beathard has at least 20 points in six of his nine NFL appearances. He makes mistakes, so be comfortable with losing a few points, although his work on the ground is grossly underappreciated. The 2017 third-rounder has logged four rushing scores in only nine games. With a trio of normal starters on their byes, there are worse options for fantasy gamers desperate for a body. The Rams have given up at least two TD passes in four straight games and no fewer than 21.9 points in the last three.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB Matt Breida, SF LAR 4013300000 ***
He wasn't much of a factor in the 2017 home game but was good for a 12-72-0 rushing line and one 32-yard grab in the Week 17 finale. Breida has been explosive and gutsy in the face of continual injury issues. The Rams have given up two scores on the ground over a span of 93 carries in the last five weeks. The matchup isn't great in any sense, and Breida is a risky RB2 or flex.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB Raheem Mostert, SF LAR 300000000 *
Mostert was good for several chunk plays last week but faces a much stiffer competition this time around. It appears he has bypassed the plodding Alfred Morris, despite what Kyle Shanahan says publicly, and is a possible waiver target as a bye-week replacement in the coming weeks.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Kendrick Bourne, SF LAR 004301000 **
Bourne's lack of production in the last two games should keep him far away from fantasy lineups. He scored twice on just four catches before Week 5 but has landed only 50 percent of his 10 looks for a mere 55 yards in the past two outings. Consider the projection to be optimistic since he has seen only 7.4 percent of the team's looks in the red zone in 2018.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Pierre Garcon, SF LAR 005600000 ***
The vet hasn't produced more than 9.7 PPR points in any game this year and is a fringe consideration. The Rams have allowed 10 TDs in the last five games to the position and sit as the fourth-best standard matchup and seventh-best opponent in PPR despite giving up only 12.2 receptions, on average. Under much different circumstances, Garcon was good for a 7-142-0 line vs. LA last year.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Marquise Goodwin, SF LAR 003500000 ***
The speedster scored twice on his four catches last week, including a 67-yard can-opener. The Rams have permitted two TDs per game to receivers since Week 1 at the second-highest frequency of all teams in this time. The matchup is fourth-best in standard scoring.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
TE George Kittle, SF LAR 005701000 ***
Kittle managed only seven PPR points in a heartbreaking loss at Lambeau Field in Week 6. The 49ers will battle the Rams in in the late-afternoon slate Sunday. Kittle went for a 1-8-0 line in Week 4 last year, and in the trip to LA (Week 17) he was good for a 4-100-0 day. Los Angeles has not given up a TE touchdown in the last 21 receptions faced this year.
  Opp fgaFGMxpaXPM ConFac
K Robbie Gould, SF LAR 1133 ***
No writeup available

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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