FANTASY FOOTBALL IN-SEASON FEATURES

Predictions & Projections
David Dorey
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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: NYJ 20, BUF 17 (Line: BUF by 3.5)

Players to Watch: C.J. Spiller, Shonn Greene

This battle to the bottom of the AFC East is a replay of the season opener when the Jets won 48-28 and the world was still simple and full of hope and even Tim Tebow was happy. Now it is just the last game in a bad season for two teams. Chan Gailey is likely to lose his job within 24 hours of the game but Rex Ryan may survive. This is just a messy game to call and to forecast like pretty much every other these two teams have done this year. The Jets have won this matchup for the last six meetings.

New York Jets
Homefield: Meadowlands Stadium
FieldTurf
  Opp Score   Opp Score
1 BUF 48-28 10 @SEA 7-28
2 @PIT 10-27 11 @STL 27-13
3 @MIA 23-20 12 NE 19-49
4 SF 0-34 13 ARI 7-6
5 HOU 17-23 14 @JAC 17-10
6 IND 35-9 15 @TEN 10-14
7 @NE 26-29 16 SD 17-27
8 MIA 9-30 17 @BUF -----
9 BYE ----- ----- ----- -----
News | Statistics | Roster
NYJ @ BUF Rush Catch Pass
QB Michael Vick 30,1 260,1
RB Chris Johnson 110,1 1-10
RB Bilal Powell 60,1 3-20
WR Eric Decker 6-70,1
WR T.J. Graham 3-40
WR Jeremy Kerley 3-40
TE Jeff Cumberland 4-40
PK Nick Folk 2 FG 2 XP

Pregame Notes: The offense is bound to look new next year if only by getting back the scores of injured players. The speculation is that the OC Tony Sparano will be the sacrificial lamb and get fired despite trying to make do with nothing more than Mark Sanchez, Shonn Greene and a revolving door at wideout.

Greg McElroy tried to hide his concussion from the medical staff but finally admitted it on Thursday morning. That choice was no doubt tough since he may have only one start in his career now. Mark Sanchez is back, knowing that they preferred Greg McElroy over him but at least they still won't use Tim Tebow.

Back in the season opener, Sanchez passed for a season best three touchdowns and 266 yards. Oh would that have only lasted. He's thrown only ten more scores over the next 13 games that he played. The Bills almost always allow one passing score though most teams focus on hurting them with the run. They are ranked #32 against running backs and in that is where the Jets will have their success.

Shonn Greene enjoyed one of his better games when he rushed for 94 yards and a score on 27 carries in the season opener. He's plugged along all year and now is joined in tandem with Bilal Powell. With such a shaky situation at quarterback and Dustin Keller expected to miss this game as well, the Jets will rely heavily on the pair of backs. The Bills have already allowed 21 scores to running backs this year.

There are no great fantasy plays here but Greene is a moderate start mainly from the favorable matchup and even Powell could produce a better stat line this week as well. This is going to be a cold game with a chance of snow.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points NYJ 30 18 29 20 31 19
Preventing Fantasy Points BUF 27 32 14 14 14 24

  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
QB Geno Smith, NYJ BUF 10000022010 ***
It's been more than a month since Geno's last fantasy-relevant outing. In that same time frame only Tom Brady has put up a fantasy helper on the Bills. It's a confluence that doesn't yield much in the way of fantasy assistance.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB Chris Ivory, NYJ BUF 5002100000 ****
The Bills still haven't allowed an RB TD this year, but they did let Jerick McKinnon take them for 103 yards last week. Ivory rushed for 98 and a touch the last time he saw Buffalo, and he's handling the majority of the Jets workload so don't write him off here; just don't expect a touchdown.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB Chris Johnson, NYJ BUF 3002100000 ****
The last three times Johnson saw the Bills he rushed for 195, 153, and 132 yards with multiple touchdowns in each game. Sadly, those games all came as a Titan and are all at least two years in the rear view mirror. He's not getting the touches needed to be a reliable fantasy contributor, so you'd have to be banking on him turning one of his reduced number of carries into a home run to be a fantasy helper this week.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Eric Decker, NYJ BUF 006601000 ***
The Bills have allowed 10 WR TDs and just as many games of 60-plus yards to opposing receivers. With Decker as the top target--yes, even with Percy Harvin in town--he has a solid chance of ringing at least one and maybe both of those benchmark bells this week.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Percy Harvin, NYJ BUF 003500000 *
Will the Jets find ways to get Harvin the ball and keep him happy? They haven't exactly been creative in their use of Michael Vick or Chris Johnson so don't hold your breath. That said, before Harvin has worn down his teammates with his personality maybe he'll squeeze in one fantasy helper.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Jeremy Kerley, NYJ BUF 003400000 ***
Kerley has been a decent fantasy wingman to Eric Decker, but Percy Harvin's arrival takes a few looks off his already sparse plate and makes him even less likely to be a fantasy contributor.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
TE Jace Amaro, NYJ BUF 004300000 ***
With Amaro still having to share looks with Jeff Cumberland, he can't be banked on for fantasy help--especially against a Bills defense that's allowed just two TE TDs all year.
  Opp fgaFGMxpaXPM ConFac
K Nick Folk, NYJ BUF 3311 ****
The Bills have allowed multiple field goals in two straight and four of five, which bodes well for the inconsistent Folk's fantasy line.

Buffalo Bills
Homefield: Ralph Wilson Stadium
AstroTurf
  Opp Score   Opp Score
1 @NYJ 28-48 10 @NE 31-37
2 KC 35-17 11 MIA 19-14
3 @CLE 24-14 12 @IND 13-20
4 NE 28-52 13 JAC 34-18
5 @SF 3-45 14 STL 12-15
6 @ARI 19-16 15 SEA 17-50
7 TEN 34-35 16 @MIA 10-24
8 BYE ----- 17 NYJ -----
9 @HOU 9-21 ----- ----- -----
News | Statistics | Roster
vs Rush Catch Pass
RB C.J. Spiller 120,1 4-30
WR Mike Williams 5-70,1
TE Lee Smith 2-20
PK Dan Carpenter 2 FG 1 XP

Pregame Notes: The Bills are expected to fire Chan Gailey and revamp the offense in the offseason to include finding a new starting quarterback. For the second year in a row, Ryan Fitzpatrick started out red hot for the first month or so and they just rapidly declined. He passed for 12 touchdowns in the first four weeks and then only 11 more in the last 11 games. That includes four times where he did not score. Gailey has stood behind Fitzpatrick but the return just has not been there and will be one reason why Gailey is out. That and a 15-31 record so far.

Fitzpatrick passed for 195 yards and three scores in the opener in New York.

Another facet sure to change will be at tailback. C.J. Spiller opened the year with 169 yards and one score on 14 runs against the Jets. But he is ending with six different games that limited him to fewer than ten carries. He is averaging 6.5 yards per carry and yet only ran 183 times this year.

Fred Jackson ran 115 times and he only played in nine games and averaged 3.8 yards per carry. At least Gailey has stated he has no intention on trying out young players in this meaningless game. That means Spiller remains a very viable option along with Steve Johnson who also scored in the season opener and gained 55 yards.

Scott Chandler has been placed on injured reserve with a torn ACL

Spiller is the only attractive start here and should have a nice game against a defense that has allowed a score and 100+ yards to the running backs of the last four toad teams. Stevie Johnson is always a low-level starter who rarely tops 70 yards in a game but is the only remaining receiver even capable of such. Knowing that the team is about to be torn up will have some effect on the game.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points BUF 21 8 27 13 26 23
Preventing Fantasy Points NYJ 5 24 2 17 15 29

  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
QB Kyle Orton, BUF @NYJ 0000028021 ****
The Jets have allowed multiple passing scores in every game this season, including hat tricks in three straight. Orton has sniffed 300 yards in each of his starts since taking over for EJ Manuel, averaging 296 yards per game with multiple scores in each of the past two. No reason to think Orton's unexpected run of fantasy success can't continue here.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB Anthony Dixon, BUF @NYJ 3002101000 *
After a fast start the Jets run D has been significantly softer of late, serving up two 100-yard rushing efforts in the past three games. Dixon is expected to handle the bulk of the Bills' backfield workload, which puts him in line to take advantage of this opportunity.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB Bryce Brown, BUF @NYJ 4002100000 *
Bryce should take over the CJ Spiller role in Buffalo, with Anthony Dixon handling most of Fred Jackson's workload. However, the Bills haven't even bothered to activate Brown yet this season so it would take a leap of faith to plug him into your fantasy lineup sight (and role) unseen this week.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Sammy Watkins, BUF @NYJ 0081201000 ***
The Jets have served up four 100-plus yard receiving games this season, all to WR1s. Watkins is fast becoming a legit WR1; he's the Bill most likely to take advantage here.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Chris Hogan, BUF @NYJ 005600000 ***
Hogan's 12 targets, 10 catches, 135 yards and one touchdown over the past two games have earned him a fantasy opportunity against a Jets secondary that's allowed eight WR TDs in seven games.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Mike Williams, BUF @NYJ 002300000 ***
Williams has some hurdles to climb to reach fantasy relevancy. Like, be active for starters. Then pull targets from Robert Woods and Chris Hogan on the run-heavy Bills. You'll find better fantasy odds elsewhere.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
TE Scott Chandler, BUF @NYJ 005601000 **
Chandler is showing some staying power past his usual productive September, and his role in this offense suggests he has fantasy upside against a Jets' defense that's allowed seven TE TDs in the past five games. It's notable as well that Chandler has scored in two of his last three meetings with Gang Green; yes, both scores came in September games, since you asked.
  Opp fgaFGMxpaXPM ConFac
K Dan Carpenter, BUF @NYJ 2222 ***
Carp has topped five points just once in the past five games, but the Jets have allowed six or better in six straight. No need to yank him if he's in your lineup, but then again no reason to go out of your way to add him, either.

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

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