FANTASY FOOTBALL IN-SEASON FEATURES

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

Prediction: NYJ 13, MIA 24 (Line: MIA by 7)

Update: Daniel Thomas is questionable to play same as last week when he played (and poorly at that). He's still likely to suit up and mostly just hurt Miller's numbers.

'This is a replay of week 13 when the Dolphins won 23-3 in New York. So long as the Dolphins win here, they take the final wildcard. If they lose, it would end up tiebreakers and could involve up to three other teams. The Fins are 4-3 at home while the Jets are only 1-6 when they leave New York.

1 TB 18-17 10 BYE WEEK
2 @NE 10-13 11 @BUF 14-37
3 BUF 27-20 12 @BAL 3-19
4 @TEN 13-38 13 MIA 3-23
5 @ATL 30-28 14 OAK 37-27
6 PIT 6-19 15 @CAR 20-30
7 NE 30-27 16 CLE 24-13
8 @CIN 9-49 17 @MIA -
9 NO 26-20 ----- ----- -----
News | Statistics | Roster
NYJ @ MIA Rush Catch Pass
QB Geno Smith 40 200,1
RB Chris Ivory 60
RB Chris Johnson 100 3-20
WR Eric Decker 6-110,1
WR Jeremy Kerley 4-50
TE Jeff Cumberland 2-20,1
PK Nick Folk 2 FG 1 XP

Pregame Notes: It was reported that Rex Ryan already told the team that he will be fired after this game and that could motivate them to rally as they did last week in the win over the Browns. But the Jets only road win all year was by two points in Atlanta at the lowest point for the Falcons. They just don't play well on the road and already lost by 20 points at home to the Dolphins.

Geno Smith took the starting job from Mark Sanchez and maybe no one wants it next year. Smith is ending with 12 passing touchdowns and four happened in just the last three weeks. Smith has added the ability to run and scored five times as a rusher but never gained more than 50 yards in any game. In the first meeting with the Fins, Smith only passed for 29 yards and ran for two. Not a good game. He was benched after completing just four of ten passes.

The running back spot was never a strength and mostly a weakness despite facing one of the lightest rushing schedules in the NFL this year. Chris Ivory finally took over as the primary back at mid-season and while he was clearly the best of them all, he only scored three times this year. He managed three games over 100 yards but has no role as a receiver and only gained 61 yards on 12 runs in the first meeting with the Dolphins. Bilal Powell added seven runs for 34 more yards in that game and he normally runs eight times or so each week if only to ruin what Ivory could do.

The tight ends scored a combined six touchdowns but none were ever reliable. Jeff Cumberland and Kellen Winslow rarely caught more than one or two passes and remained well below fantasy relevance.

The wideouts were even worse. Geno Smith was expected to make do with Clyde Gates, David Nelson, Greg Salas, Jeremy Kerley, Stephen Hill and Santonio Holmes. Only Kerley ever merited any fantasy consideration and even then he was a low end flex starter when the matchup was good. This was a bad unit going in and never improved. The entire offense was suspect to start and proved to be one of the worst in the league, saved only by a defense that occasionally could stop an opponent.

MATCH TO THE DEFENSE: The first meeting with the Fins was a disaster and now they are in Miami and the Fins have to win to reach the playoffs. The only starter from this motley crew was Ivory as a very low end flex play and even he was marginal in the other game against the Dolphins. No Jets are recommended this week.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points NYJ 29 29 30 19 13 32
Preventing Fantasy Points MIA 6 22 8 24 23 18

 

1 @CLE 23-10 10 @TB 19-22
2 @IND 24-20 11 SD 20-16
3 ATL 27-23 12 CAR 16-20
4 @NO 17-38 13 @NYJ 23-3
5 BAL 23-26 14 @PIT 34-28
6 BYE WEEK 15 NE 24-20
7 BUF 21-23 16 @BUF 0-19
8 @NE 17-27 17 NYJ -
9 CIN 22-20 ----- ----- -----
News | Statistics | Roster
MIA vs NYJ Rush Catch Pass
QB Ryan Tannehill 20 290,2
RB Lamar Miller 50 2-20
RB Knowshon Moreno 50 4-40
WR Brian Hartline 5-60
WR Rishard Matthews 3-20
WR Mike Wallace 7-90,1
TE Charles Clay 6-80,1
PK Caleb Sturgis 1 FG 3 XP

Pregame Notes: In the AFC there is only one spot left to decide and the second wild card belongs to the Fins so long as they win here - they are the only AFC team still in the hunt that can control their own fate and not rely on other teams winning or losing.

This is a nice set-up. They already beat the Jets handily in New York. Apparently they were looking past the Bills last week because they were never in that game and skunked for the first time this year. The best defensive matchup was against the Jets and a win here will send them to their playoff loss in either Indianapolis or Cincinnati.

Ryan Tannehill injured his knee last week but it was not expected to be an issue or prevent him from playing in this all-important game. The loss in Buffalo was the first time this season that Tannehill failed to score. He passed for 331 yards and two scores in New York this year and scored twice. He was on a nice stretch of games until last week.

This remains the worst group of running backs in the NFL. The worst. There were only six rushing scores this year and marginal yardage in almost every game. Daniel Thomas still commands an ever-changing role with anywhere from two to 16 carries in a game with no real clue as to what the week will hold. Lamar Miller is more consistent but never scored since week four and varies just as wildly as Thomas. In week 13, Thomas was out and Miller ran for 72 yards on a season high 22 carries against the Jets.

Charles Clay is just as inconsistent though he scored six times as the lead scorer for the Dolphins. He caught seven passes for 80 yards in the last game with the Jets. He might have one catch for six yards or may end with 97 yards and two scores but there is no real rhyme or reason for why he blows up or just disappears.

Thanks to Tannehill, the wideouts combine for fantasy value but individually they are always a risk. Brandon Gibson was just starting to matter when he left in week eight to injured reserve. Brian Hartline is the most consistent and scored four times but normally ends up around 60 yards per week. Mike Wallace was the pricey free agent acquisition and is improving in recent weeks with three scores over he last five games. He caught seven passes for 82 yards and one score versus the Jets this year and otherwise has always played better at home. Hartline also excelled in New York and ended with a season best nine catches for 127 yards and one score.

MATCH TO THE DEFENSE: The Jets have had plenty of problems this year but stopping the run was never one of them. This is the worst set of running backs going against the best defense against the position. Forget Thomas and Miller every week anyway and more so here. Tannehill faces a team he already had no problem beating and now is home in a must win game. Wallace is worth a start and Hartline is a flex play that is a little safer since the Fins have to win this game. The Fins have to pass to win this game and that benefits the two wideouts long before any other players.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points MIA 17 32 10 11 16 17
Preventing Fantasy Points NYJ 20 2 25 27 31 30

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


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