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Predictions & Projections
David Dorey
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WEEK 16
2010
CAR at PIT BAL at CLE TEN at KC *IND at OAK
*DAL at ARI DET at MIA SEA at TB NYG at GB
*NE at BUF *NYJ at CHI *MIN at PHI *SD at CIN
*UPDATED *SF at STL *WAS at JAC *HOU at DEN NO at ATL

Prediction: BAL 20, CLE 17

This is a rematch of week three when the Ravens won 24-17 in Baltimore. The Browns have not beaten the Ravens since 2007. This should be a cold game with a chance of snow.

Baltimore Ravens (10-4)
Homefield: M&T Bank Stadium
Sport Turf
  Opp Score   Opp Score
1 @NYJ W 10-9 10 @ATL L 21-26
2 @CIN L 10-15 11 @CAR W 37-13
3 CLE W 24-17 12 TB W 17-10
4 @PIT W 17-14 13 PIT L 10-13
5 DEN W 31-17 14 @HOU W 34-28
6 @NE L 20-23 15 NO W 30-24
7 BUF W 37-34 16 @CLE --
8 Bye - 17 CIN --
9 MIA W 26-10   - -
Ravens Report | Statistics | Roster
BALTIMORE at CLE Rush Catch Pass
QB Joe Flacco - - 250,2
RB Ray Rice 60 50 -
TE Todd Heap - 40 -
WR Anquan Boldin - 60,1 -
WR T.J. Houshmandzadeh - 30 -
WR Derrick Mason - 50,1 -
PK Billy Cundiff 2 FG 2 XP -

Pregame Notes: Having the Steelers lose last week opens up the chance for the Ravens to win the division but they have to win out and hope to get help. But ending with games against the Bengals and Browns is about as good as it gets for an offense that just recently got it's mojo back. No time to coast per se, but the Ravens should pick up these last two wins without too much trouble.

QUARTERBACK: Joe Flacco passed for 262 yards and three touchdowns in the previous meeting with the Browns and he's been on a hot streak lately with multiple scores in seven of the last nine games. The Browns have been better in home games than away and no opponent has scored more than twice with the pass in Cleveland. Expect Flacco to post those two touchdowns and the yardage depends in part how the rushing effort goes. This should be at least a good game but could top 300 yards if the Browns can make a game of it.

RUNNING BACKS: Ray Rice had a season best showing last week with 153 rush yards and a score plus 80 yards on seven catches with a second touchdown in the Saints win. But Rice had not been above 88 rushing yards since week five and has only scored in three different games this year. He gained 80 yards on 15 carries in the previous meeting with the Browns and turned in four receptions for 16 yards in that game.

Willis McGahee is no longer a factor in games since week nine but Rice has had to rely on receiving yardage to break the 100 yard mark in all but two games this year. And the Browns have only allowed one rushing score to a visitor this year and rarely more than 60 yards to a visiting runner. The Browns rushing defense is actually very good and loses out only because so many running backs catch passes against them.

Last week was a wonderful surprise but on the road to Cleveland will be a different beast. Expect a more normal showing by Rice.

WIDE RECEIVERS: Anquan Boldin had his career best game in the week three matchup with the Browns when he caught eight passes for 142 yards and three touchdowns. No other wideout had more than 30 yards in that game. No other wideout needed to do anything. But that won't happen again and the Browns have only allowed four touchdowns to wide receivers in the six home games this year. Only Terrell Owens and Roddy White gained more than 76 yards in Cleveland. That last Boldin game was the worst one allowed by the Browns all year. No other wideout had as many as two touchdowns on them.

I like the two scores and they should both end up here. Boldin has already been successful against them once but that was in only his third game with the team. I'll split the scores between the starting wideouts but consider mostly the yardage in your starting decision.

TIGHT ENDS: Todd Heap has a chance to return this week after missing three games with a hamstring strain. In his place Ed DIckinson scored against the Saints but the Browns have only allowed one visiting tight end to score on them. The risk is too high that there is no score though Heap should have decent yardage if healthy. He turned in 46 yards on four receptions in the last meeting.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points BAL 14 10 18 15 14 22
Preventing Fantasy Points CLE 18 15 12 24 14 17
Advantage(+) or Disadvantage(-) BAL 4 5 -6 9 0 -5


Cleveland Browns (5-9)
Homefield: Cleveland Stadium
Grass
  Opp Score   Opp Score
1 @TB L 14-17 10 NYJ L 20-26
2 KC L 14-16 11 @JAC L 20-24
3 @BAL L 17-24 12 CAR W 24-23
4 CIN W 23-20 13 @MIA W 13-10
5 ATL L 10-20 14 @BUF L 6-13
6 @PIT L 10-28 15 @CIN L 17-19
7 @NO W 30-17 16 BAL --
8 Bye - 17 PIT --
9 NE W 34-14 - - -
Browns Report | Statistics | Roster
CLEVELAND vs BAL Rush Catch Pass
QB Colt McCoy - - 200,1
RB Peyton Hillis 80,1 30 -
TE Ben Watson - 40,1 -
WR Mohamed Massaquoi - 30 -
WR Brian Robiskie - 40 -
WR Chansi Stuckey - 30 -
PK Phil Dawson 1 FG 2 XP -

Pregame Notes: The Browns conclude their brutal three week road trek and arrive home for their final two games against the 10-4 Ravens and Steelers. A losing season was assured last week anyway and it is starting to look like opponents are figuring out Peyton Hillis which will not bode well for the next two weeks. But the Browns have been better than their record may suggest and held nine opponents to 20 points or less. Colt McCoy and Peyton Hillis fill holes in the offense so the season did make some strides to being more competitive.

QUARTERBACK: Colt McCoy returned from his ankle sprain that kept him out for three weeks and he passed for a career best 243 yards and two scores in the loss in Cincinnati. Seneca Wallace was the starter in week three when the Browns went to Baltimore and he ended with only 141 yards and one touchdown in that game.

The Ravens have allowed eight passing scores in the seven previous road games but six of those were either for Matt Ryan or Matt Schaub - a class higher than the rookie McCoy. Maybe several classes. Still you should expect one passing score as likely and McCoy is getting better and remaining above 200 yards for the last three weeks.

RUNNING BACKS: The Bengals game planned primarily to stop Peyton Hillis last week and he only gained 59 yards on 14 carries and 23 yards on two receptions for one of his worst games yet. Hillis gained 144 yards and one touchdown along with seven catches for 36 yards in Baltimore this year but he has slowed down recently. He has not scored in any of the last three games though all were on the road. He was held to 57 rushing yards in Miami. He has not been the dynamic fantasy point generator lately. Then again - road games.

Hillis has scored in every home game so far and enjoyed his biggest games. The Ravens will be plotting to stop him first and foremost but expect Hillis to still have a decent performance. The Ravens gave up over 100 rush yards to a running back in each of the last two games and Hillis is going to get the workload to at least have a decent showing.

WIDE RECEIVERS: This is the #32 ranked set of wide receivers and collectively they have only scored four times this season. Brian Robiskie had a touchdown last week for the first time and only Mohamed Massaquoi has more than one (which is just two). Each wideout here will offer some marginal yardage each week but never enough to merit a fantasy start and the odds on getting a touchdown out of one is "lotto scratcher" kind of high. In the previous meeting, the only wideout with any catches was Josh Cribbs who never gets more than one reception per week anymore.

TIGHT ENDS: Ben Watson scored once on the Ravens in week three and ended with 47 yards on five catches. He has the team lead with three receiving scores and has been the best receiver for the team. Evan Moore and Robert Royal both have one touchdown this year and Moore even had three games over 60 yards but only Watson is consistent enough to merit any consideration.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points CLE 30 14 32 7 25 16
Preventing Fantasy Points BAL 11 5 23 11 19 5
Advantage(+) or Disadvantage(-) CLE -19 -9 -9 4 -6 -11

WEEK 16
2010
CAR at PIT BAL at CLE TEN at KC IND at OAK
DAL at ARI DET at MIA SEA at TB NYG at GB
NE at BUF NYJ at CHI MIN at PHI SD at CIN
  SF at STL WAS at JAC HOU at DEN NO at ATL
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