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Predictions & Projections
David Dorey
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WEEK 10 WAS at MIN (THU) DAL at NO JAC at TEN STL at IND
CIN at BAL HOU at ARI SEA at ATL MIA at TB (MON)
BUF at PIT DEN at SD OAK at NYG On Bye:
*UPDATED CAR at SF DET at CHI PHI at GB CLE, KC, NE, NYJ

Prediction: PHI 24, GB 27 (Line: GB by 1.5)

Players of Interest: Nick "How do you like me now" Foles, Seneca Wallace

Things change quickly in the NFL. The 4-5 Eagles remain one game out of first in the NFC East thanks to Nick Foles apparently planting his flag and announcing all of Oakland belongs to him now. The 5-3 Packers fall into a three way tie for the NFC North lead after the unthinkable happened when Aaron Rodgers was body slammed and cracked his collar bone. Now this game is a coin flip because the Eagles cannot be that good and no one knows what to think about the Packers without Rodgers, Randall Cobb, Jermichael Finley or a healthy James Jones.

1 @WAS 33-27 10 @GB -
2 SD 30-33 11 WAS -
3 KC 16-26 12 BYE WEEK
4 @DEN 20-52 13 ARI -
5 @NYG 36-21 14 DET -
6 @TB 31-20 15 @MIN -
7 DAL 3-17 16 CHI -
8 NYG 7-15 17 @DAL -
9 @OAK 49-20 ----- ----- -----
News | Statistics | Roster
PHI @ GB Rush Catch Pass
QB Nick Foles 10 300,2
RB LeSean McCoy 50,1 5-40
RB Darren Sproles 10 4-20
WR Riley Cooper 4-70,1
TE Brent Celek 3-40
TE Zach Ertz 3-20

Pregame Notes: The Eagles suddenly look really good if only for one week and now get to face a rudderless Packers team in a game that looked impossible only one week before. The rest of the schedule is not bad for the Eagles with four home games and then just two other road trips including a season finale that could be for the whole enchilada. A win this week could set it all in motion.

QUARTERBACKS: It is one thing to see Peyton Manning join the ranks of seven-touchdown quarterbacks that had not been increased since the 1960's. It is another to have Nick Foles pull a chair up to that table when he had only thrown 12 other touchdowns in his two year career. It is a leap. It was only the 11th game he had ever played in. Matt Barkley looked so bad in his cameo appearances that Foles is going to be the man from now on. Oh yeah, the whole Michael Vick experience is over. Vick played in six games this year and only threw for five touchdowns. Foles - one game - seven touchdowns. And that was with him not even finishing the game.

RUNNING BACKS: The one casualty of Foles taking over, or at least coincidentally, is LeSean McCoy who has been far less productive for three weeks now. He's rushed for only 55 yards tops and his catches are down as well. Sure, he had a score on a reception since there were seven to share but he never scored in the three previous games. The offense has been passing more in recent games and McCoy has been less effective and keeps dropping in his number of carries. He's still producing enough fantasy value to merit a start but he's not been a difference maker in about a month.

WIDE RECEIVERS: Of course Riley Cooper (5-139, 3 TDs) comes off a career best game and that gives him two big games this year - both on the road - and all others were less than stellar games with two meaningless catches each. What is interesting in that was Jeff Maehl only had one catch for 19 yards despite being the new guy they want to work in and Jason Avant only had one pass and did not catch it. Blanked in a game with 400 passing yards and seven touchdowns says you are not at the top of the game plan. Or even on it. DeSean Jackson (5-150, TD) was also productive and oddly he has five good games this year - four came on the road. He's been strangely quiet at home and then unstoppable in away games.

TIGHT ENDS: Both Zach Ertz (5-42, TD) and Brent Celek (3-27, TD) scored last week but that was a first for Ertz. Celek had two others this year but neither player is reliable for more than about 20 or 30 yards per week. They share four touchdowns over the nine games played.

MATCH TO THE DEFENSE: How this matches up with the Packers playing without Rodgers is not entirely known since it hasn't happen in a couple of years. And certainly not without half of their normal receivers as well. The Packers have allowed a passing score or two for every opponent other than the Vikings. And the yardage can be high for a good quarterback. The Packers are also only average against the run though only Matt Forte scored as a running back in Green Bay. Under normal circumstances, this would probably end up as shootout and still may. The rewards is much bigger than the risk for Foles, McCoy and Jackson. The other receivers could join in but they are far less reliable.

WHAT TO WATCH: Nick Foles looked like a different player in Oakland. Need to see him follow that up with at least a few touchdowns and higher yards. With the Packers potentially not as high scoring, it could end up with more rushing on both sides which slows the scoring and consumes the clock so that there are fewer plays.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points PHI 3 14 6 14 17 23
Preventing Fantasy Points GB 19 13 18 27 4 12

 

1 @SF 28-34 10 PHI -
2 WAS 38-20 11 @NYG -
3 @CIN 30-34 12 MIN -
4 BYE WEEK 13 @DET -
5 DET 22-9 14 ATL -
6 @BAL 19-17 15 @DAL -
7 CLE 31-13 16 PIT -
8 @MIN 44-31 17 @CHI -
9 CHI 20-27 ----- ----- -----
News | Statistics | Roster
vs Rush Catch Pass
RB Eddie Lacy 100,1 3-20
RB James Starks 30,1 1-10
WR Jarrett Boykin 3-40
WR Jordy Nelson 6-70,1
TE Andrew Quarless 5-40
PK Mason Crosby 2 FG 3 XP

Pregame Notes: It is sort of like bowling. You don't have to hit every pin to get a strike, you just hit the first one and let it take out all the others. That is what happened when Aaron Rodgers was crunched in the loss to the Bears. Not only does his fantasy value leave, but he takes a whole lot of everyone else's with him. The diagnosis calls for about three weeks rest and if he can return by the Lions game in week 13, the Packers may be able to survive his temporary absence. But it didn't look like in on Monday night.

QUARTERBACKS: Aaron Rodgers cracked his collarbone which was good in that he was not lost for the season. He should be back within a month or it could heal slowly for the older Rodgers and take six weeks. That would pretty much spell doom for 2013. Seneca Wallace will again take his place but that is a very sizable step down. Against the Bears they tried to run as much as they could and Wallace ended with only 11 of 19 completions for 114 yards and one interception.

There is speculation that Matt Flynn may be brought in since he is not gainfully employed currently but his only redeeming quality seems to be that he doesn't need to be shown where the restrooms are or told what time lunch is served.

RUNNING BACKS: Acquiring Eddie Lacy could be a saving grace in this non-Rodgers crisis, along with a healthy Starks. Lacy scored a touchdown in each of the last three games and turned in 22+ carries for the last five weeks. His role as a receiver strangely disappeared with Wallace under center. James Starks also scored in the last two games and ran very well on his six or seven carries per game. The Packers are going to want to run as much as they can get away with and prevent games from becoming shootouts they are much less adept at winning for now.

WIDE RECEIVERS: Losing Rodgers seemed to take all the wind from the sails last Monday. James Jones returned after missing two games with a sprained knee but only caught one pass and is clearly not 100% yet. He only played in 28 snaps in his first game back. Jarrett Boykin saw his role evaporate with only one pass thrown his way. Jordy Nelson was the lead receiver with four receptions for 67 yards but that ended his three game streak with a touchdown. Myles White only had one pass as well. It was just one game and Rodgers departure completely unexpected but it was also at home against a weaker Bears secondary. There was nothing warm and fuzzy about anything.

TIGHT ENDS: Jermichael Finley was placed on injured reserve with a bruised spinal cord and is gone for the year. In his place Andrew Quarless is just a blocking tight end with never more than 34 yards in any game.

MATCH TO THE DEFENSE: The Eagles have one of the weakest secondaries in the NFL and rank dead last against wide receivers. They are also weaker against the run with seven rushing touchdowns given up as well. This is a pretty bad defense and that gives some hope that the Packers can rise to the occasion. Lacy and possibly even Starks are worth starting. Nelson is the only receiver that has enough upside to merit a start though Boykin could be in a decent spot if Wallace would use him. In this brave new world, only Lacy and Nelson remain must starts.

WHAT TO WATCH: Seneca Wallace has to produce a far better game or the Packers need to decide what Plan C will be.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points GB 9 10 2 19 1 24
Preventing Fantasy Points PHI 27 19 32 3 26 21

WEEK 10 WAS at MIN (THU) DAL at NO JAC at TEN STL at IND
CIN at BAL HOU at ARI SEA at ATL MIA at TB (MON)
BUF at PIT DEN at SD OAK at NYG On Bye:
*UPDATED CAR at SF DET at CHI PHI at GB CLE, KC, NE, NYJ


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