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Predictions & Projections
David Dorey
Sortable Player Projections
Game Predictions Summary

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WEEK 7
2010
PHI at TEN* STL at TB BUF at BAL MIN at GB*
CIN at ATL SF at CAR* ARI at SEA* NYG at DAL*
CLE at NO* WAS at CHI* OAK at DEN* DET, HOU
*Updated PIT at MIA JAC at KC* NE at SD* IND, NYJ

Prediction: OAK 20, DEN 24

Update: There is still a chance that Jason Campbell could play this week and it will be a game time decision so as unattractive as starting an OAK QB already is - it is now even worse. I'll leave Boller as the starter but that is not a lock. Darren McFadden is listed as questionable because of his hamstring and he has been limited in practice but may play according to both HC Tom Cable and McFadden himself. I am changing the projections but this is a tough situation that really only guarantees that Michael Bush does less. McFadden's role and ability to play is not for certain and could change during the game.

This is one of those games where you can pretty much throw out the standings. Consider that as bad as the Raiders have been, these teams have split wins each season back to 2006. Odder still? The last four meetings of these teams were won by the road team even though Denver was favored by 13.5 and 9 points at home in the last two years. This time they are only favored by 6.5 points.

The Raiders upset the Broncos in week 15 last year when they won 20-19 in Denver.

Oakland Raiders (2-4)
Homefield: McAfee Coliseum
Grass
  Opp Score   Opp Score
1 @TEN L 13-38 10 Bye -
2 STL W 16-14 11 @PIT --
3 @ARI L 23-24 12 MIA --
4 HOU L 24-31 13 @SD --
5 SD W 35-27 14 @JAC --
6 @SF L 9-17 15 DEN --
7 @DEN -- 16 IND --
8 SEA -- 17 @KC --
9 KC -- - - -
Raiders Report | Statistics | Roster
OAKLAND at DEN Rush Catch Pass
QB Kyle Boller - - 180,1
RB Michael Bush 20,1 10 -
RB Darren McFadden 50 10 -
TE Zach Miller - 60 -
WR Louis Murphy - 40,1 -
WR Johnnie Lee Higgins - 20 -
WR Darrius Heyward-Bey - 20 -
PK Sebastian Janikowski 2 FG 2 XP -
Pregame Notes: The Raiders are like NFL ninjas because you never know when they are going to strike. After an impressive win over the Chargers (semi-impressive perhaps), the 49ers finally got their first win of the season against these Raiders. But now there are quarterback injury issues and an unsettled backfield. The Raiders are 0-3 on the road and perhaps have the Broncos right where they want them.

QUARTERBACK: Jason Campbell may have a meniscus tear in his left knee but he's been ineffective even when healthy and would likely get replaced anyway. The question is who will be the starter this week? Bruce Gradkowski has a sprain of the A-C joint and may not be ready which means it rolls further down the depth chart until Kyle Boller pops up.

I will project for Boller to start and later switch to Gradkowski if he ends up playing. Boller in Oakland is just speculation with no real stats to judge by.

RUNNING BACKS: Further complicating this game is that Darren McFadden still has yet to practice and will try it again this week to see if his hamstring is sufficiently improved. Barring a positive report on his practicing and knee condition, I will assume another game from Michael Bush and adjust later in the week as needed. Bush had 104 yards and a score on the Chargers but then only managed 47 yards on 20 carries in San Francisco.

Michael Bush gained 133 yards on 18 carries in Denver last year.

The Broncos allowed five rushing scores in the last two weeks but were solid against running backs from week four and before. The Raiders are going to try to establish the run at all costs and Bush should see enough work to produce at least moderate yardage with a score. Again - in a DEN/OAK game, almost anything can happen.

WIDE RECEIVERS: Switching to Kyle Boller makes this weak unit even worse to project. Louis Murphy is the only wide receiver that matters and the Broncos have allowed seven scores to the position this season. The yardage will not likely be much but there is at least the chance of one score for Murphy since there is no game film on Boller in Oakland. Murphy may draw Champ Bailey which would make the touchdown less likely.

TIGHT ENDS: Zach Miller was doubled last week and only had 48 yards on two catches in San Francisco. With Boller under center, there is no telling what to expect other than Boller always liked his tight ends in Baltimore. Miller will be the focus of the secondary as the leading receiver and scorer for the Raiders.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points OAK 24 8 32 7 3 21
Preventing Fantasy Points DEN 22 19 21 19 13 12
Advantage(+) or Disadvantage(-) OAK -2 11 -11 12 10 -9


Denver Broncos (2-4)
Homefield: Invesco Field
Grass
  Opp Score   Opp Score
1 @JAC L 17-24 10 KC --
2 SEA W 31-14 11 @SD --
3 IND L 13-27 12 STL --
4 @TEN W 26-20 13 @KC --
5 @BAL L 17-31 14 @ARI --
6 NYJ L 20-24 15 @OAK --
7 OAK -- 16 HOU --
8 @SF -- 17 SD --
9 Bye - - - -
Broncos Report | Statistics | Roster
DENVER vs OAK Rush Catch Pass
QB Kyle Orton - - 280,2
RB Knowshon Moreno 60,1 10 -
RB Laurence Maroney 20 - -
WR Jabbar Gaffney - 90,1 -
WR Demaryius Thomas - 40,1 -
WR Brandon Lloyd - 80 -
PK Matt Prater 1 FG 3 XP -

Pregame Notes: The Broncos have fallen to 2-4 and the schedule maker has done them no favors. The next two games should present an excellent chance to get back to .500 before the bye in week nine and being .500 may be good enough to with the AFC West anyway. The defense has allowed less than 20 points to an opponent only once this year but this week should be the easiest game so far. In theory anyway.

QUARTERBACK: Kyle Orton has continued his streak of scoring in every game this year but his 209 yards against the Jets was well below the 295 yard mark set by his previous "worst" game. The Broncos even rolled out Tim Tebow in the wildcat formation for six runs against the Jets and he scored once. He never threw a pass though. I won't project for Tebow because of his scant playing time but he could hawk more yards and scores from the running backs.

Orton passed for 278 yards when the Raiders visited last year.

The Raiders are perfect so far in that they have allowed exactly two passing scores in every game. The yardage has varied wildly and all have been less than 200 yards other than Philip RIvers who passed for 431 yards. Orton has to throw thanks to a sluggish rushing attack so expect those two guaranteed touchdowns and good yardage.

RUNNING BACKS: Knowshon Moreno returned to action with 12 rushes for 48 yards in Sunday's loss to the Jets but his hamstring seemed to be a slight issue. Moreno has not rushed for more than 60 yards this season but he's been much more successful than Correll Buckhalter or Laurence Maroney who has run 36 times for only 74 yards.

The Raiders are weak against the run with six scores allowed but Moreno will not get the volume of carries to turn in a good game here. He has a nice shot at a touchdown and moderate yardage but he won't produce the monster game that the Raiders occasionally permit.

WIDE RECEIVERS: Eddie Royal injured his groin and left the Jets game and the extent of the injury has not been disclosed as of this writing. It appears early that he may miss this week so I will exclude him from the projections and add in Demaryius Thomas unless good news about Royal is forthcoming.

Brandon Lloyd went against Antonio Cromartie last week and still produced 74 yards on four catches but that ended his three game streak of 100+ yards. Chances are he'll be pitted against Nnamdi Asomugha this week but you cannot bench him regardless. Jabbar Gaffney should see the benefit of lesser coverage this week along with Demaryius Thomas. The Raiders allow about one to two touchdowns per quarterback and most of them end up with the wide receivers.

Look for a nice effort here from Gaffney and yet still enough reason to start Lloyd this week. I like both scores to end up in this position.

TIGHT ENDS: No fantasy value.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points DEN 4 30 1 32 10 28
Preventing Fantasy Points OAK 18 30 12 29 12 19
Advantage(+) or Disadvantage(-) DEN 14 0 11 -3 2 -9

WEEK 7
2010
PHI at TEN STL at TB BUF at BAL MIN at GB
CIN at ATL SF at CAR ARI at SEA NYG at DAL
CLE at NO WAS at CHI OAK at DEN DET, HOU
  PIT at MIA JAC at KC NE at SD IND, NYJ
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