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Predictions & Projections
David Dorey
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WEEK 15
2010
SF at SD *CLE at CIN *KC at STL *DEN at OAK
BUF at MIA *JAC at IND ARI at CAR NYJ at PIT
*PHI at NYG HOU at TEN DET at TB *GB at NE
*UPDATED *WAS at DAL *NO at BAL ATL at SEA *CHI at MIN

Prediction: DEN 17, OAK 27

Update: Kyle Orton has been limited in practices this week and is questionable to play. There is speculation that Tim Tebow will get the start but check the game inactives to see who is going to play. Orton has sore ribs and injured his arm enough that he has not been able to throw in practice. Relying on him or Tebow or any of the wideouts regardless is a big risk this week.

This is a rematch of the absolute mauling of the Broncos when the Raiders won 59-14 in Denver in week seven. These teams usually trade road wins but this time around the Broncos are not looking up to the task with an offense that is now floundering without Josh McDaniels around to control it.

Denver Broncos (3-10)
Homefield: Invesco Field
Grass
  Opp Score   Opp Score
1 @JAC L 17-24 10 KC W 49-29
2 SEA W 31-14 11 @SD L 14-35
3 IND L 13-27 12 STL L 33-36
4 @TEN W 26-20 13 @KC L 6-10
5 @BAL L 17-31 14 @ARI L 13-43
6 NYJ L 20-24 15 @OAK --
7 OAK L 14-59 16 HOU --
8 @SF L 16-24 17 SD --
9 Bye - - - -
Broncos Report | Statistics | Roster
DENVER at OAK Rush Catch Pass
QB Kyle Orton - - 200,1
RB Knowshon Moreno 60,1 40 -
WR Jabbar Gaffney - 30 -
WR Eddie Royal - 50 -
WR Brandon Lloyd - 50,1 -
PK Matt Hauschka 1 FG 2 XP -

Pregame Notes: Only a win over the Chiefs prevented a nine game losing streak and now that the offense has been handed over the results appear disastrous since they could do little against the normally soft Cardinals defense. This is the third road game in a row and that too has to wear on a team that is reeling from all the losses and now the coaching situation. Next week against the visiting Texans is the last reasonable chance for a win .

I assume that Matt Prater remains out with a groin injury.

QUARTERBACK: The loss of Josh McDaniels from the sideline has been catastrophic to the passing game that has now gone two weeks without a touchdown and no more than 166 passing yards. Back in week seven, Kyle Orton threw for 198 yards and two scores on the Raiders and that should be a reasonable expectation this week because the Raiders have only had two games all year where they did not give up at least two passing touchdowns.

But after the horrible outings of the last two weeks, it is risky to assume anything positive about the Broncos, particularly in their third straight road game.

RUNNING BACKS: Knowshon Moreno has remained a factor in the offense even as the passing game has dwindled. He has scored in four of the last five weeks and had 161 rushing yards when he did not score. Moreno gained 53 yards on 14 carries against the Raiders earlier this year and added two touchdowns on his three catches for 37 yards.

Moreno is running better and getting more carries in recent weeks. The Raiders are average at best against the run so look for a decent showing in yardage from Moreno with a shot at one score,

WIDE RECEIVERS: The sudden decline in passing has been directly felt here where Brandon Lloyd was having a blistering season and yet only managed five catches for 63 yards in the last two weeks with no scores. He already has nine touchdowns and five games over 100 yards. Lloyd was held to one catch for 46 yards in the previous meeting with the Raiders while Jabbar Gaffney was held to just 54 yards on four catches in that game.

The Raiders secondary has been softer recently in allowing scores. I like one touchdown to end up with this unit but it could end up with any of the three. I'll credit Lloyd who is on a dry spell and is due.

TIGHT ENDS: No fantasy value.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points DEN 6 21 1 32 26 32
Preventing Fantasy Points OAK 23 25 10 23 14 15
Advantage(+) or Disadvantage(-) DEN 17 4 9 -9 -12 -17


Oakland Raiders (6-7)
Homefield: McAfee Coliseum
Grass
  Opp Score   Opp Score
1 @TEN L 13-38 10 Bye -
2 STL W 16-14 11 @PIT L 3-35
3 @ARI L 23-24 12 MIA L 17-33
4 HOU L 24-31 13 @SD W 28-13
5 SD W 35-27 14 @JAC L 31-38
6 @SF L 9-17 15 DEN --
7 @DEN W 59-14 16 IND --
8 SEA W 33-3 17 @KC --
9 KC W 23-20 - - -
Raiders Report | Statistics | Roster
OAKLAND vs DEN Rush Catch Pass
QB Jason Campbell - - 200,1
RB Darren McFadden 120,2 30 -
TE Zach Miller - 50,1 -
WR Louis Murphy - 40 -
WR Jacoby Ford - 40 -
WR Darrius Heyward-Bey - 30 -
PK Sebastian Janikowski 2 FG 3 XP -

Pregame Notes: The Raiders return home to shoot for a 5-0 mark against the division that included sweeping the Chargers already. The Raiders are still two games behind the Chiefs but have beaten them once. There is still a chance that the Raiders could be playing for the division in week 17 in Kansas City but will need to win out for that to matter.

QUARTERBACK: Jason Campbell passed for 204 yards and two scores in Denver this year and he comes off a season high 324 yards and two scores in Jacksonville. But Campbell is much more likely to let the ground game take care of business when possible and the Broncos have been so soft against the run that most teams only score once via the pass against them.

It is entirely possible that Campbell has two scores or even three given the apparent white flag waving by the Broncos but at home it is more likely to just happen on the ground.

RUNNING BACKS: Darren McFadden had his best game of his career in Denver during week seven when he rushed for 165 yards and three scores on 16 carries and added a fourth score on his two catches for 31 yards. Though McFadden slumped for a few weeks against formidable defenses, he comes off a three touchdown effort in Jacksonville where he had 209 total yards. And now Denver again?

This is a good week to be holding McFadden who should rack up nice yardage and two scores - maybe more if the Broncos are still waving that white flag. Michael Bush had 51 yards and a score in the previous meeting with the Broncos and could play a factor again this week but he disappears too often to rely on.

WIDE RECEIVERS: There is still nothing reliable here for a unit that has only scored five times all year and has only three efforts that exceeded 100 yards. Louis Murphy scored last week but that was just his second on the year and he only produced two catches for 29 yards back in Denver. No other receiver did any better in that game and the Raiders continue to just rely on rushing and the tight end. No decent fantasy plays here.

TIGHT ENDS: The Broncos are especially weak against tight ends and Zach Miller already had three catches for 75 yards and a touchdown back in week seven in Denver. He is only now getting over his ankle injury and had four catches for 68 yards in Jacksonville after four straight games with sub-10 yard performances.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points OAK 24 1 29 19 3 9
Preventing Fantasy Points DEN 25 31 17 28 24 19
Advantage(+) or Disadvantage(-) OAK 1 30 -12 9 21 10

WEEK 15
2010
SF at SD CLE at CIN KC at STL DEN at OAK
BUF at MIA JAC at IND ARI at CAR NYJ at PIT
PHI at NYG HOU at TEN DET at TB GB at NE
  WAS at DAL NO at BAL ATL at SEA CHI at MIN
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