FANTASY FOOTBALL IN-SEASON FEATURES

Predictions & Projections
David Dorey
Follow Follow @DMDorey
 

Predictions Summary »  Player Rankings (Projections) »  myHuddle Projections by Team »  Projections Summary by Team »

WEEK 17
2012
ARI at SF CLE at PIT JAC at TEN OAK at SD
BAL at CIN DAL at WAS KC at DEN PHI at NYG
CAR at NO GB at MIN MIA at NE STL at SEA
  CHI at DET HOU at IND NYJ at BUF TB at ATL

Prediction: KC 10, DEN 24 (Line: DEN by 16)

Players to Watch: Jamaal Charles, Knowshon Moreno, Ronnie Hillman

The Broncos can clinch a first round bye with a win here and if the Texans were to lose as well, the Broncos become the #1 seed. The 2-13 Chiefs once again narrowly miss the playoffs and seek to improve their 1-6 road record this year. This game is hard to call because you cannot be sure when the Broncos feel comfortable enough to pull back the reins a bit but with a 16 point spread, common sense says this game should be a blowout of some measure. The Chiefs last two road games combined for a total of just seven points. The Broncos last two home games total 65 points.

This is a replay of week 12 when the Broncos won 17-9 in Kansas City.

Kansas City Chiefs
Homefield: Arrowhead Stadium
Grass
  Opp Score   Opp Score
1 ATL 24-40 10 @PIT 13-16
2 @BUF 17-35 11 CIN 6-28
3 @NO 27-24 12 DEN 9-17
4 SD 20-37 13 CAR 27-21
5 BAL 6-9 14 @CLE 7-30
6 @TB 10-38 15 @OAK 0-15
7 BYE ----- 16 IND 13-20
8 OAK 16-26 17 @DEN -----
9 @SD 13-31 ----- ----- -----
News | Statistics | Roster
vs Rush Catch Pass
RB Jamaal Charles 60 3-20
WR Jason Avant 4-60
WR Donnie Avery 4-60
TE Anthony Fasano 2-20

Pregame Notes: The season concludes in Denver and chances are excellent that a new coaching staff will be in place next season along with some unknown number of players. Most notable will be a new quarterback since the duo of Matt Cassel and Brady Quinn have run their course and end the year with a total of only eight passing touchdowns and only one effort that topped 300 yards - 301 in Buffalo in week two.

The eight passing scores have been accompanied by 20 interceptions thrown and seven lost fumbles. The switch to Brady Quinn in week 11 has resulted in only two touchdowns and both of those came in the same game. Quinn topped out at 201 yards so far and threw for only 126 yards and one interception in the previous meeting with the Broncos.

With Dwayne Bowe out, there is no one to throw it to anyway and even Tony Moeaki remains out with a concussion. Johnathan Baldwin has two catches total over the last three weeks.

The only success all year has been the running of Jamaal Charles who topped 100 yards seven times this year and went over 200 yards twice. As a prime example of the Chiefs sort of year, he ran for 165 yards and one score in Cleveland in week 15 and gained 226 yards just last week. And sandwiched between those was when he gained only ten yards on nine runs in Oakland. Charles has been a great comeback story after tearing up his knee last year and he even ran for 107 yards on 23 carries in the last meeting with the Broncos.

That's going to be hard to count on this week with the Broncos defense hitting a new level in the last month or so. But Charles is the only fantasy play on this team since Dwayne Bowe left. Even on the road, he is always worth a start and has been golden in nearly every game that does not involve the Raiders. With the passing game in shambles now, the Chiefs will rely on the run as much as they can and probably more than they should.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points KC 32 4 32 29 25 32
Preventing Fantasy Points DEN 11 5 8 32 4 10

  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
QB Alex Smith, KC @PIT 0000024021 ***
Smith has thrown multiple touchdown passes in three of his last four games and should be able to replicate that feat against a Steelers secondary that's served up multiple scoring strikes in eight straight. That's what passes for a big game for Smith.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB Jamaal Charles, KC @PIT 9004401000 ***
Charles is battling head, ankle, and knee injuries so he's been ceding touches to Knile Davis. He's still a must-start, but the fact that Davis swiped two scores last week alone takes some of the luster off.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Dwayne Bowe, KC @PIT 006900000 ***
It's been 17 games, 222 targets, 132 catches, 1,628 yards since a Chiefs wide receiver last scored a touchdown. That streak ends here, against a Steelers secondary that's allowed at least one WR TD in seven straight games, and Bowe is the most likely Chief to do it.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Albert Wilson, KC @PIT 004500000 ***
Wilson matched Dwayne Bowe's catches and yardage last week and recorded the second-most targets among KC wideouts as well. Memo to Wilson: if you're going to emulate someone, aim higher.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
TE Travis Kelce, KC @PIT 004501000 ***
More reliable targets, i.e. not sharing with Anthony Fasano, and this favorable matchup would make Kelce one of the top tight end plays of the week. Settle for solid and hope Fasano stays out of the mix.
  Opp fgaFGMxpaXPM ConFac
K Cairo Santos, KC @PIT 2222 ***
Raise your hand if you remember all the way back to Week 8. That's the last time Santos had double-digit points, as well as the last time Pittsburgh gave up double-digit points to an opposing kicker. Two months of evidence suggests you should get your fantasy kicks elsewhere this week.

Denver Broncos
Homefield: Invesco Field
Grass
  Opp Score   Opp Score
1 PIT 31-19 10 @CAR 36-14
2 @ATL 21-27 11 SD 30-23
3 HOU 25-31 12 @KC 17-9
4 OAK 37-6 13 TB 31-23
5 @NE 21-31 14 @OAK 26-13
6 @SD 35-24 15 @BAL 34-17
7 BYE ----- 16 CLE 34-12
8 NO 34-14 17 KC -----
9 @CIN 31-23 ----- ----- -----
News | Statistics | Roster
DEN vs KC Rush Catch Pass
QB Peyton Manning 290,2
WR Emmanuel Sanders 5-70,1
WR Demaryius Thomas 5-80,1
WR Wes Welker 8-100,1
TE Jacob Tamme 2-20
PK Connor Barth 1 FG 2 XP

Pregame Notes: The Broncos official word is that they are not going to rest any players and that Peyton Manning will put in a full game. And the reality is that the only thing that matters here is a win which won't be hard to obtain. And the Texans will have already played so that Denver will know if they even have a chance to win more than a first round bye. They are playing the Chiefs at home. This game smacks of players sitting out late in the contest if only Knowshon Moreno and maybe Peyton.

Manning already threw for 285 yards and two scores in Kansas City and has scored in every game this year. Over half of his games contain three passing scores. How much will be needed to beat the Chiefs? The first touchdown alone may do the trick. Manning is always a gamer and wants to play. And if he was hurt in the fourth quarter of a 24-3 game, just how bad would that be?

Moreno had his first start of the year against the Chiefs and ran for 85 yards on 20 carries and caught four passes for 26 yards. He's been a true surprise and his success only illustrates how great it is to play running back for a team with Peyton Manning under center. he is averaging 94 rushing yards per start and 29 more yards as a receiver. Not bad for a guy we thought was so far down the depth chart that he had to share one helmet with two other players.

Ronnie Hillman will likely get at least a few more reps this week and may end up taking over at some point.

Jacob Tamme scored on his four catches for 48 yards in Kansas City and that was his only score all year since the season opener. Demaryius Thomas also scored and ended with 82 yards while Eric Decker caught four passes for 64 yards.

The Broncos want to win this game but that should not be a big problem. The real issue is how reliable can these guys be once they have that two score lead? Against a team that can only has seven points total over their last two road games? More risk here than it may seem.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points DEN 9 13 2 8 8 3
Preventing Fantasy Points KC 17 20 16 8 29 30

  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
QB Peyton Manning, DEN @CIN 0000025020 ***
Cincy's been solid against the pass all season; Peyton's been ordinary the past couple of weeks. Dial back expectations, though you needn't go so far as to bench Manning here.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB C.J. Anderson, DEN @CIN 10014301000 ***
The Broncos are going to run Anderson plenty--109 carries over the past four games, resulting in 478 yards and four rushing scores. The Bengals couldn't contain similarly heavy-loaded backs like Stevan Ridley (27-113-1), Terrance West (26-94-1) or Le'Veon Bell (26-185-2), so expect Anderson to work back towards his 100-yard days after a couple weeks under that milestone.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Demaryius Thomas, DEN @CIN 0071001000 ***
Cincy's secondary has been among the best this year at shutting down opposing wide receivers. That said, the last time they say a tandem even close to the talent level of Thomas and Emmanuel Sanders they gave up matching 100-yard games to Antonio Brown and Martavis Bryant. No worries about Demaryius making his appointed rounds this week.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Emmanuel Sanders, DEN @CIN 004600000 ***
It's not a particularly favorable matchup, and Sanders has taken a back seat to Demaryius Thomas the past couple of weeks against tougher defenses. But the pattern set by the Steelers, with both Antonio Brown and Martavis Bryant topping 100 yards, seems to be the closest fit to what Denver brings to the table this week. Consider Sanders just a half-step behind Thomas at the top end of the Denver passing game.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
TE Julius Thomas, DEN @CIN 003400000 ***
Thomas had one catch in his return to action last week. Now he'll face a Cincy D that was beaten by Rob Gronkowski and Greg Olsen earlier in the year but held Jimmy Graham in check and has allowed only one TE TD in the past two months. He's still a threat, but if you've found a quality backup plan during his absence you'll want to give serious consideration to employing it for at least one more week.
  Opp fgaFGMxpaXPM ConFac
K Connor Barth, DEN @CIN 2233 ***
Peyton Manning's struggles are to Barth's benefit, as he's booted five field goals in two of the past three games; prior to that Denver had just two multi-field goal games all year. Cincy's surrendered multiple treys in three straight, so Barth's fun times three should continue this week.

WEEK 17
2012
ARI at SF CLE at PIT JAC at TEN OAK at SD
BAL at CIN DAL at WAS KC at DEN PHI at NYG
CAR at NO GB at MIN MIA at NE STL at SEA
  CHI at DET HOU at IND NYJ at BUF TB at ATL

a d v e r t i s e m e n t