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FANTASY FOOTBALL IN-SEASON FEATURES

Predictions & Projections
David Dorey
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WEEK 8
2010
*GB at NYJ *CAR at STL *MIN at NE *HOU at IND
*DEN at SF WAS at DET *SEA at OAK ATL, BAL
JAC at DAL *BUF at KC TB at ARI CHI, CLE
*UPDATED MIA at CIN *TEN at SD *PIT at NO NYG, PHI

Prediction: GB 17, NYJ 25

Update: Donald Driver has been held out of practices to rest his sore quadriceps but is still likely to play though he will again be limited.

Update #2: Driver came back for limited work on Friday and is expected to play.

The Packers ended a two game losing slide when they beat the visiting Vikings last week but are only 1-2 in road games where they have not won since the season opener. The Jets come off their bye week tied with the Patriots for the AFC East and are 2-1 at home and on a five game winning streak since the season opener. A healthy Packers team would struggle here and a beat up version will have a tougher time.

Green Bay Packers (4-3)
Homefield: Lambeau Field
Grass
  Opp Score   Opp Score
1 @PHI W 27-20 10 Bye -
2 BUF W 34-7 11 @MIN --
3 @CHI L 17-20 12 @ATL --
4 DET W 28-26 13 SF --
5 @WAS L 13-16 14 @DET --
6 MIA L 20-23 15 @NE --
7 MIN W 28-24 16 NYG --
8 @NYJ -- 17 CHI --
9 DAL -- - - -
Packers Report | Statistics | Roster
GREEN BAY at NYJ Rush Catch Pass
QB Aaron Rodgers 20 - 280,2
RB Brandon Jackson 40 20 -
TE Andrew Quarless - 10,1 -
WR Greg Jennings - 40 -
WR Donald Driver - 50 -
WR Jordy Nelson - 60 -
WR James Jones - 70,1 -
PK Mason Crosby 1 FG 2 XP -
Pregame Notes: Huge win over the visiting Vikings last week that places the Packers tied with Chicago for the NFC North lead. And the Bears are on their own two game losing streak. Aaron Rodgers is still trying to replace what he had in Jermichael Finley and his starts have remained very healthy in fantasy terms and there is still no rushing game to get in the way.

QUARTERBACK: Aaron Rodgers has remained productive each week with no less than one score in all but one game and around 300 yards in four of the last five matchups. The only problem is that his lowest scoring games have come in road venues and in those three games away from Green Bay, Rodgers has only passed for four touchdowns in total along with four interceptions.

The Jets have been softer against the pass and allowed ten scores over the last five games and all but one had two touchdowns or more against them. The Jets are outstanding against the run and the pass is the only way to advance the ball. Expect Rodgers to post at least decent stats if not good ones.

RUNNING BACKS: Brandon Jackson comes off his best fantasy game of the season when he rushed for 58 yards and a score against the Vikes and added 46 more yards on three catches. And while his rush yards are often lower on the road, he has been catching more passes in away games than when at home. That should come into play at least a few times this week in New York.

The Jets have only given up one touchdown to a running back this season and no runner has gained over 88 yards on them. With Jackson on the road, expect low numbers that even receptions may not compensate.

WIDE RECEIVERS: Donald Driver was blanked last week but had not done that much in recent weeks anyway. He hasn't scored since week four or had more than 58 yards. Greg Jennings has finally returned to being a primary target. Jennings turned in six receptions in each of the last two games with 133 and 74 yards respectively. He scored in each and now is the leading scorer for the Packers. Losing Jermichael FInley was the best thing that ever happened to Jennings.

James Jones had 107 yards on four catches last week and has been getting up to eight targets per game recently. As he and Jennings do better, Driver has been getting worse but he has been nursing a sore quad muscle. Last week was the first time in 133 games that Driver did not have a catch.

The bad news is that Darrelle Revis is expected to be 100% healthy this week so the question is who he will cover? He would naturally pair on Driver but Jennings has been the one to shut down in recent weeks. Outside of the Revis guy, most other wideouts will have a decent game against the Jets. I am going to assume Revis pairs with Jennings and that spreads the wealth over the rest.

TIGHT ENDS: Andrew Quarless had a touchdown catch last week but both Donald Lee and Tom Crabtree also play a role in the receiving game. Because their yardage is split up and not that high anyway, you should not rely on a tight end here. I am forecasting a score to Quarless this week but it could easily go to one of the other two tight ends.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points GB 5 31 7 9 17 13
Preventing Fantasy Points NYJ 28 1 30 11 2 2
Advantage(+) or Disadvantage(-) GB 23 -30 23 2 -15 -11


New York Jets (5-1)
Homefield: Giants Stadium
FieldTurf
  Opp Score   Opp Score
1 BAL L 9-10 10 @CLE --
2 NE W 28-14 11 HOU --
3 @MIA W 31-23 12 CIN --
4 @BUF W 38-14 13 @NE --
5 MIN W 29-20 14 MIA --
6 @DEN W 24-20 15 @PIT --
7 Bye - 16 @CHI --
8 GB -- 17 BUF --
9 @DET -- - - -
Jets Report | Statistics | Roster
NY JETS vs GB Rush Catch Pass
QB Mark Sanchez - - 190,1
RB Shonn Greene 40 - -
RB LaDainian Tomlinson 80,1 20 -
TE Dustin Keller - 30 -
WR Jerricho Cotchery - 20 -
WR Braylon Edwards - 50 -
WR Santonio Holmes - 60,1 -
PK Nick Folk 3 FG 2 XP -

Pregame Notes: The Jets come off their bye week in a very nice spot - sporting a five game winning streak and already beating each divisional opponent once. These good tidings are likely to continue with this week followed by games against the Lions, Browns, Texans and Bengals before the schedule toughen ups on the way out. No doubt the two weeks off has allowed Mark Sanchez to get in some valuable work with Santonio Holmes.

QUARTERBACK: Mark Sanchez had a very nice three game scoring spree when he faced each of his AFC East rivals and scored eight touchdowns over the three games with never less than two. But Sanchez has only one score in his other three games combined and he has not broken 200 pass yards since back in week three mostly because the rushing attack has been enough to win all those games.

The Packers Have been softer against the pass in recent weeks and I'll forecast one passing score for Sanchez but his yardage will remain moderate at best.

RUNNING BACKS: The Jets backfield hasn't been as productive as a few others but that's largely been thanks to a tougher schedule. LaDainian Tomlinson scored five times over the last four games and taken the lead role from Shonn Greene. Both runners only have one big rushing game (BUF of course) but Tomlinson has evolved into being worthy of a fantasy start each week because he usually scores and when he doesn't, he has a big yardage game.

The Packers have only allowed three rushing touchdowns this year and were great against the run until these last two games when they allowed over 130 rush yards each time. And the Jets are going to run first, pass later. Tomlinson is worth a start here and should score but Greene's more likely to accept a lesser role against the stout Packers run defense.

WIDE RECEIVERS: This unit has been all about Braylon Edwards who has caught a score in four of the last five games and been good for around 50 yards or more each week. Jerricho Cotchery was already only a minor possession receiver and now with Santonio Holmes on board will take an even further slide back. Sanchez has only passed for one score to a wideout outside of Edwards but that should change this week. The Jets want to work Holmes into the rotation more heavily and this week would be a good place for him to finally show up with more than just 50 yards in a game.

TIGHT ENDS: Dustin Keller sprained his wrist back in week six but the bye helped him to heal and he has not worn anything for it in practice so far. He is good to go this week but has historically been less active at home where the Jets run the ball more. The Packers are weak against the tight end but it depends on whether the Jets need to bother with him or not.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points NYJ 27 6 23 5 1 11
Preventing Fantasy Points GB 26 3 14 20 28 18
Advantage(+) or Disadvantage(-) NYJ -1 -3 -9 15 27 7

WEEK 8
2010
GB at NYJ CAR at STL MIN at NE HOU at IND
DEN at SF WAS at DET SEA at OAK ATL, BAL
JAC at DAL BUF at KC TB at ARI CHI, CLE
  MIA at CIN TEN at SD PIT at NO NYG, PHI
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