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Predictions & Projections
David Dorey
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WEEK 16 ARI at SEA DEN at HOU NE at BAL PIT at GB
CHI at PHI IND at KC NO at CAR TB at STL
CLE at NYJ MIN at CIN NYG at DET TEN at JAC
*UPDATED DAL at WAS MIA at BUF OAK at SD ATL at SF (MON)

Prediction: ARI 3, SEA 31 (Line: SEA by 9.5)

Update: Larry Fitzgerald still has a concussion test left to pass before he can be cleared to play. This is a later afternoon game so you cannot know for sure that he is active by the morning kickoff. He is not a recommended start this week even if active.

The 12-2 Seahawks can wrap up the #1 seed this week and are 6-0 at home anyway. The 9-5 Cardinals are on a two game winning streak and are still vying for the #2 wildcard but would need to beat the 49ers next week and hope tie breakers were good enough. This is a replay of week seven when the Seahawks won 34-22 in Arizona.

1 @STL 24-27 10 HOU 27-24
2 DET 25-21 11 @JAC 27-14
3 @NO 7-31 12 IND 40-11
4 @TB 13-10 13 @PHI 21-24
5 CAR 22-6 14 STL 30-10
6 @SF 20-32 15 @TEN 37-34
7 SEA 22-34 16 @SEA -
8 ATL 27-13 17 SF -
9 BYE WEEK ----- ----- -----
News | Statistics | Roster
ARI @ SEA Rush Catch Pass
QB Carson Palmer 190
RB Andre Ellington 20 4-20
WR Larry Fitzgerald 3-30
WR Michael Floyd 5-60
TE John Carlson
TE Rob Housler 6-40

Pregame Notes: This is certainly the best Cardinals team since back when Kurt Warner was around but unfortunately lives in a division with two other even better teams. The second half of the season witnessed the offense finally coming to form and while the rushing effort is rarely much, it provides enough in most games. The Cardinals couldn't ask for a worse ending to the season with a trip here to Seattle and lastly hosting the 49ers who will still be vying for the playoffs.

QUARTERBACKS: Carson Palmer is a lock to get a touchdown in every game but he almost never has more than one and his yardage remains moderate unless facing a really bad secondary which won't happen again this year. Palmer passed for 258 yards and one score in the earlier meeting with the Seahawks.

RUNNING BACKS: Andre Ellington remains the most effective back and even turned in a total of 158 yards in Tennessee on just 15 touches but he;s always been limited to around that level if not less. Rashard Mendenhall rarely gains more than three yards per carry and does well enough to ever eclipse 50 yards in a game but he is the designated scorer and already turned in eight touchdowns this year. Back in week seven, Ellington only managed 13 total yards and Mendenhall ran for only 22 yards on 13 carries but scored once.

Ellington injured his thigh last week but it is not expected to be an issue.

WIDE RECEIVERS: Larry Fitzgerald suffered a concussion last week and despite the assurance from his father on Monday, he has to go through all the testing in order to play this week. Fitzgerald was on a four game scoring streak until last week but his worst game of the year was versus the Seahawks when he was limited to only 17 yards on two receptions. Michael Floyd scored four times this year and all were in a road game. But against the last two opponents with good defenses - the Rams and Titans - he was held to only two catches for less than 35 yards each time. Versus the Seahawks in week seven he turned in six catches for 71 yards.

I will assume that Fitzgerald clears his tests but either way his outlook is not favorable.

TIGHT ENDS: No fantasy value. Rob Housler caught a season high seven passes for 53 yards against the Seahawks in the first meeting. He's scored just once all year and rarely tops 50 yards in a game.

MATCH TO THE DEFENSE: Not a good equation since the Seahawks are tops against quarterbacks and wideouts which is the only decent part of the Arizona offense. No players are recommended this week. The Seahawks need this game to lock up the #1 and it is a divisional game at home. That all smacks of a near shut out.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points ARI 24 18 12 25 18 4
Preventing Fantasy Points SEA 1 6 1 9 4 4

 

1 @CAR 12-7 10 @ATL 33-10
2 SF 29-3 11 MIN 41-20
3 JAC 45-17 12 BYE WEEK
4 @HOU 23-20 13 NO 34-7
5 @IND 28-34 14 @SF 17-19
6 TEN 20-13 15 @NYG 23-0
7 @ARI 34-22 16 ARI -
8 @STL 14-9 17 STL -
9 TB 27-24 ----- ----- -----
News | Statistics | Roster
SEA vs ARI Rush Catch Pass
QB Russell Wilson 30 220,2
RB Marshawn Lynch 90,1 1-10
WR Doug Baldwin 3-40
TE Zach Miller 6-60,1
PK Steven Hauschka 1 FG 4 XP

Pregame Notes: The Seahawks wind down with an easy path to the playoffs with two home games against divisional opponents they have already beaten. There is a real concern about Marshawn Lynch, Russell Wilson and even a few wideouts playing the full week 17 but it will be all hands on deck in this game. The last two games were won by 21+ points in Seattle.

QUARTERBACKS: Russell Wilson is on a an eight game scoring streak and while he usually posts only moderate stats, he's topped 300 yards twice when the occasion called for it. Wilson threw for 235 yards and three scores in Arizona this year and typically scores at least twice in home games.

RUNNING BACKS: Marshawn Lynch is lighter on yardage this season and only topped 100 rush yards three times but he scored 13 times already. He ran for 91 yards on 21 carries in Arizona and scored once while adding only one catch for three yards. The tough part of forecasting for Lynch is that when the Seahawks get a sizable lead they will often just turn to Robert Turbin more at the end of games. Lynch always gets all the scores but not always all the yards he could.

WIDE RECEIVERS: With Percy Harvin a perpetual no-show, Doug Baldwin has really stepped into the primary receiver role and scored four times in just the last six games while maintaining around 70 yards or so in each of those matchups. He still has not broken 100 yards so far this year but is the only consistent receiver for the Seahawks. Golden Tate has the occasional good game and twice he turned in big stats but he balances those with far too many efforts that end up below 30 yards. Baldwin only caught one pass for 16 yards in Arizona while being covered by Patrick Peterson. Tate was able to gain 77 yards on four receptions.

TIGHT ENDS: Though he scored four times this year, Zach Miller has been inconsistent at best and his last two games only ended with a single catch. Miller caught five passes for 40 yards and one score versus the Cardinals earlier this year.

MATCH TO THE DEFENSE: The Cardinals defense should be worse this time with their free safety out this week and they already lost a corner the previous week. That won't turn this into an aerial show though. The Cardinals have been great against the run thanks largely to a kind schedule and Lynch already had success in Arizona. He's a must start this week and Miller is facing the worst defense against tight ends and he already scored on them once. The Cards have given up an astonishing 15 touchdowns to tight ends. Baldwin draws Peterson so Miller is the only really attractive receiver.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points SEA 5 14 18 20 2 6
Preventing Fantasy Points ARI 14 1 5 32 5 11

WEEK 16 ARI at SEA DEN at HOU NE at BAL PIT at GB
CHI at PHI IND at KC NO at CAR TB at STL
CLE at NYJ MIN at CIN NYG at DET TEN at JAC
*UPDATED DAL at WAS MIA at BUF OAK at SD ATL at SF (MON)


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