The Huddle on Facebook Facebook   The Huddle on Twitter Twitter   The Huddle Mobile Mobile Welcome, Guest. You are not logged in.   | Login  |  Help
HOME FANTASY DRAFT KIT IN SEASON ARTICLES NEWS STATS FORUMS TEAMS PLAYERS NFL DRAFT NFL ABOUT TICKETS myHuddle

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 5 BUF at CLE (THU) DET at GB NE at CIN SEA at IND
DEN at DAL KC at TEN SD at OAK NYJ at ATL (MON)
BAL at MIA HOU at SF NO at CHI On Bye:
*UPDATED CAR at ARI JAC at STL PHI at NYG MIN, PIT, TB, WAS

Prediction: NO 20, CHI 24 (Line: CHI by 1)

Players of Interest: Alshon Jeffrey

The Saints remain perfect at 4-0 and had little problem dispatching the Cardinals and Dolphins in recent games. What comes to bear more this week is how the Saints are going to fare on the road? So far their only trip away from New Orleans was going to Tampa Bay where they won only 16-14. That doesn't bode nearly so well for the next two weeks playing in Chicago and then New England. The Bears fell to 3-1 when they lost in Detroit but return home this week. It will be a close game and one likely decided by turnovers.

1 ATL 23-17 10 DAL -
2 @TB 16-14 11 SF -
3 ARI 31-7 12 @ATL -
4 MIA 38-17 13 @SEA -
5 @CHI - 14 CAR -
6 @NE - 15 @STL -
7 BYE WEEK 16 @CAR -
8 BUF - 17 TB -
9 @NYJ - ----- ----- -----
News | Statistics | Roster
NO @ CHI Rush Catch Pass
QB Drew Brees 320,2
RB Pierre Thomas 30 5-30
WR Marques Colston 4-60,1
WR Robert Meachem 2-30
WR Kenny Stills 4-50
TE Jimmy Graham 6-80,1

Pregame Notes: Two big wins make life in the Big Easy good but the schedule is about to get interesting before reaching their week seven bye. The Saints are just happy to get back HC Sean Payton and no doubt gave the national game extra effort last Monday. There is no denying that the Saints defense has vastly improved with never allowing more than 17 points. The schedule has not faced any offensive juggernauts yet and has remained largely at home, but the change from 2012 is profound.

QUARTERBACKS: It has been vintage Drew Brees so far with ten touchdowns on the season and never below 300 passing yards in any game. Brees even added in a rushing touchdown against the Cardinals. The opening stretch was kind to Brees with three of four games played at home. He'll be more tested in the coming weeks when the schedule toughens up.

RUNNING BACKS: Mark Ingram remains out with a bad toe but he's fallen so far from favor finally that his health is not the biggest factor in his playing. Pierre Thomas started the Dolphins game but only gained one yard on four runs but added five catches for 37 yards. Darren Sproles turned in his best effort since the 2008 playoffs when he rolled up 28 rush yards and seven catches for 114 yards on the Dolphins last Monday. He scored both as a runner and a receiver which gave the Saints their only touchdowns by a running back this year.

Notable too was that the Saints turned to undrafted Khiry Robinson for 12 runs that gained 37 yards. This rushing offense remains very pedestrian outside of the receptions by Sproles and Thomas.

WIDE RECEIVERS: Lance Moore remains out with a sprained wrist but that hasn't affected the output of a unit that hasn't turned in one big game all year anyway. Despite the 300+ passing yards each week, no wideout has been able to top 100 yards in any game and all combined only two scores have made their way to a wideout. Robert Meachem is the new deep guy who caught a score against the Cardinals but had only one reception in his other two weeks. Marques Colston remains solid enough with 60+ yards every week but has not scored since the season opener. Kenny Stills filled in for Moore and yet remains well below fantasy consideration. For a premier passing offense, this unit is surprisingly unproductive.

TIGHT ENDS: Fortunately there is one very reliable part of the offense. Jimmy Graham comes off his third straight game with over 100 yards and two more scores giving him a total of six already this year. No other receiver has scored more than once. Even Ben Watson got in with a touchdown last week though it was his only catch.

MATCH TO THE DEFENSE: The Bears have been great against the run until last week when Reggie Bush went skipping through the heart of their defense. But this is at Chicago and the Saints are rushing well against anyone. Brees faces a secondary that has allowed at least one score every week but never more than two. With the Steelers throwing for 406 yards against them, Brees should safely remain above his 300 yard standard. Brees, Graham, Colston and Sproles are every week starters anyway and should provide at least moderate stats this week - no reason to shy away from them.

WHAT TO WATCH: This is going to be interesting to watch because as good as the Saints have played, they've only played at home other than the one near loss in Tampa Bay. How well the offense moves in Chicago will be key to evaluating how well the Saints can sustain this red hot start.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points NO 2 9 28 1 6 14
Preventing Fantasy Points CHI 19 12 25 19 31 26

 

1 CIN 24-21 10 DET -
2 MIN 31-30 11 BAL -
3 @PIT 40-23 12 @STL -
4 @DET 32-40 13 @MIN -
5 NO - 14 DAL -
6 NYG - 15 @CLE -
7 @WAS - 16 @PHI -
8 BYE WEEK 17 GB -
9 @GB - ----- ----- -----
News | Statistics | Roster
CHI vs NO Rush Catch Pass
QB Jay Cutler 250,2
RB Matt Forte 80,1 6-30
WR Alshon Jeffery 4-50
WR Brandon Marshall 7-100,1
TE Martellus Bennett 5-50,1
PK Robbie Gould 1 FG 3 XP

Pregame Notes: The Bears were 3-0 heading into Detroit where they normally always win. But they had no answer for Reggie Bush and overall looked unprepared. It did not help that Jay Cutler suddenly reverted back to last year and threw three interceptions and lost a fumble But that was just one game and now the Bears get to face these Saints and then the Giants in Chicago. A road game in Washington precedes the week eight bye and the Bears should be favored in all of them. The offense has been very good along with a defense adept at scoring again this year. This game needs to show that the Lions loss was just "one of those games" and not the start of a new trend.

QUARTERBACKS: The Bears scored 32 points in Detroit but Jay Cutler's four turnovers doomed the effort even though his 317 passing yards were a season high. Cutler's been good for at least one score every week and at least two in home games. He remains the pivotal player in the offense but these next three games should see an improvement if only because they are at home or facing weak defenses.

RUNNING BACKS: Matt Forte remains solid every week with at least 90 total yards and a score in all but one game. He still has not topped 100 rushing yards and has yet to run more than 20 times in any game. He also catches at least four passes in every game. With the powerful passing attack of the Saints coming to town, no doubt the Bear's game plan includes as much rushing as they can get away with and that is pretty much all about Forte.

WIDE RECEIVERS: There are no questions with this group where only three wideouts have caught any passes for the Bears this year. Brandon Marshall hit a dry spell for the last two road games and did not score while being held to moderate yardage but he topped 100 yards and scored in both the previous home stands. Alshon Jeffrey finally did exactly what he was drafted to do. When Marshall was covered by the Lions, Jeffery stepped up with five catches for 107 yards and one score in his career best game. Earl Bennett never does more than two short catches each week but has managed to score in each of the last two tilts.

TIGHT ENDS: Another weapon of growing importance is Martellus Bennett who caught eight passes for 90 yards - both career high marks. Bennett scored three times this year and all were in home games. He's been the number two receiver in most games.

MATCH TO THE DEFENSE: No denying how much better the Saints have played on defense for 2013. But while they have only given up four passing touchdowns, those went to Josh Freeman, Ryan Tannehill and Matt Ryan who not only scored twice but ended with 304 yards. This is speculative so far because this is the first challenging road game that they Saints have had and they come off a nice win on Monday night. Expect moderate to good yardage from Cutler who throws only as much as is needed. Forte is a must start against a defense that allowed Doug Martin 129 rushing yards in their only other trip away from New Orleans. The pass defense is where the Saints have really improved and no one has topped 100 receiving yards against them. Figure on a decent showing by Martellus Bennett against a defense that has allowed scores to two tight ends. Cutler, Marshall, Bennett and Forte are all decent plays this week.

WHAT TO WATCH: How well the Bears can pass to their wideouts. Alshon Jeffrey is showing signs of turning the corner and stepping up this year. This game will need a complementary option from Brandon Marshall.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points CHI 14 16 9 10 10 2
Preventing Fantasy Points NO 5 19 5 8 1 16

WEEK 5 BUF at CLE (THU) DET at GB NE at CIN SEA at IND
DEN at DAL KC at TEN SD at OAK NYJ at ATL (MON)
BAL at MIA HOU at SF NO at CHI On Bye:
*UPDATED CAR at ARI JAC at STL PHI at NYG MIN, PIT, TB, WAS


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