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FANTASY FOOTBALL IN-SEASON FEATURES

Predictions & Projections
David Dorey
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DIVISION
ROUND
SATURDAY SUNDAY
Baltimore at Pittsburgh, 4:30 PM EST Seattle at Chicago, 1 PM EST
Green Bay at Atlanta, 8 PM EST NY Jets at New England 4:30 PM EST

Prediction: SEA 17, CHI 34

This is a replay of week six when the Seahawks upset the Bears in Chicago 23-20 and the Seahawks shocked the world when they beat the Saints 41-36 last week in Seattle. The Seahawks are only 2-6 on the road to show how big an upset it was in Chicago last time. The Bears have been on bye which allowed several players to get healthier and are 5-3 at home with their last win there when they beat the Jets. Seattle has already won here once this year and a second time would be an even bigger surprise than beating the world champion Saints last week.

Seattle Seahawks (7-9)
Homefield: Qwest Field
FieldTurf
  Opp Score   Opp Score
1 SF W 31-6 10 @ARI W 36-18
2 @DEN L 14-31 11 @NO L 19-34
3 SD W 27-20 12 KC L 24-42
4 @STL L 3-20 13 CAR W 31-14
5 Bye - 14 @SF L 21-40
6 @CHI W 23-20 15 ATL L 18-34
7 ARI W 22-10 16 @TB L 15-38
8 @OAK L 3-33 17 STL W 16-6
9 NYG L 7-41 - - -
Seahawks Report | Statistics | Roster
SEATTLE Rush Catch Pass
QB Matt Hasselbeck - - 250,1
RB Justin Forsett 20 20 -
RB Marshawn Lynch 50,1 20 -
TE John Carlson - 20 -
WR Mike Williams - 50 -
WR Brandon Stokley - 60 -
WR Ruvell Martin - 40,1 -
WR Ben Obomanu - 30 -
PK Olindo Mare 1 FG 2 XP -
Pregame Notes: The Seattle defense was no better last week when they gave up 36 points but the offense suddenly played better than they had all year. Matt Hasselbeck had never passed for more than two touchdowns in any game and yet threw four of them against one of the best secondaries in the league. It was one of those "destiny" games last week since each time the Saints would get back into the game, the Seahawks would nudge forward more. It will take another one of those "exceed past history" efforts to win in Chicago this week. They would not have taken them lightly anyway having lost to them back in week six.

QUARTERBACK: Whatever happened last week can hopefully be bottled and consumed again because Matt Hasselbeck passed for as many touchdowns as he had in the five previous games combined. He had never thrown for more than two scores in any game and had just one touchdown in Chicago back in week six when he threw for 242 yards and no turnovers. In seven full road games, Hasselbeck only scored six times.

The Bears will certainly see him coming this time and have allowed all visiting quarterbacks to score at least once this year though no one had more than two touchdowns. Replicating the last meeting would be success enough. Most of what he accomplished then was thanks to Mike Williams who had 10 catches for 123 yards and has already been discussed by Lovie Smith as the target of the secondary.

RUNNING BACKS: Marshawn Lynch gained a season high 131 yards on 19 carries and scored once in the Saints game. His previous best was only 89 yards. And he even scored once in Chicago in week six in his first playing time as a Seahawk. Lynch gained 44 yards on 17 carries in that game but his only other score or ever game of any note away from Seattle was when he ran for 29 yards and one touchdown in Arizona. Lynch only has a 2.8 yard per carry average away from Seattle.

Justin Forsett also scored in Chicago when he had ten runs for 67 yards and that was his best game of the year. Since then he has only scored once - in Arizona of course - and has been nearly phased out as a runner.

The Bears have allowed seven rushing touchdowns to visitors in Chicago but rarely any decent yardage. Lynch has a shot at another score but the yardage from his first time there is probably as good as it gets.

WIDE RECEIVERS: Ben Obomanu dislocated his shoulder last week but is still expected to play in this game. The wide receivers came through in the last meeting with the Bears when Mike WIlliams totaled ten catches for 123 yards but the Bears are making a specific effort to contain Williams in this game and he's been the only consistent weapon for the Seahawks. Golden Tate has been nearly invisible and had no catches back in the first game in Chicago. Deon Butler scored once and had 27 yards in that game but has been gone since week 14. Brandon Stokley showed up with 73 yards and a score on four catches in the Saints game but that was his only score of the entire year and he only accounted for three receptions for 17 yards in the Chicago game.

The Seahawks need some success here to have any chance and what they did to the Saints was freakish and without precedent this season. Expect one score here and likely not Williams since he'll be the main focus of the secondary.

TIGHT ENDS: Matt Hasselbeck throws three passes for 17 yards to John Carlson last week and two went for a touchdown. Carlson only had one other score all year and that was back in week three. He never has any appreciable yardage and never scored in 11 straight games until last week. He only caught two passes for 21 yards in the last meeting in Chicago. Expect him to be more true to his mediocre form this week.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points SEA 27 30 19 28 20 13
Preventing Fantasy Points CHI 8 7 11 10 6 28
Advantage(+) or Disadvantage(-)   -19 -23 -8 -18 -14 15


Chicago Bears (11-5)
Homefield: Soldier Field
Grass
  Opp Score   Opp Score
1 DET W 19-14 10 MIN W 27-13
2 @DAL W 27-20 11 @MIA W 16-0
3 GB W 20-17 12 PHI W 31-26
4 @NYG L 3-17 13 @DET W 24-20
5 @CAR W 23-6 14 NE L 7-36
6 SEA L 20-23 15 @MIN W 40-14
7 WAS L 14-17 16 NYJ W 38-34
8 Bye - 17 @GB L 3-10
9 @BUF W 22-19   - -
Bears Report | Statistics | Roster
CHICAGO Rush Catch Pass
QB Jay Cutler - - 230,2
RB Matt Forte 70,1 30 -
TE Greg Olsen - 20 -
WR Devin Hester - 40,1 -
WR Earl Bennett - 40 -
WR Johnny Knox - 100,1 -
PK Robbie Gould 2 FG 4 XP -

Pregame Notes: The Bears come off their bye and hold the #1 seed that should see the NFC Championship game held in Chicago. Seattle came in and surprised them back in week six. But the Bears have been running the ball much better since that meeting and more importantly the defense has stepped up as well. This should be the biggest win of the weekend - or the biggest upset as it was with the Seahawks last week.

I like a defensive or special teams score in this game.

QUARTERBACK: Jay Cutler passed for 290 yards against the visiting Seahawks though he had no scores and was sacked six times. He's established an odd pattern this year where either he does not score at all (5 games) or he has multiple touchdowns (7 games). Since mid-season, Cutler has been bouncing between 175 and 250 passing yards per game.

The Seahawks secondary allowed at least one pass touchdown to every road opponent except the Bears in week six. In the last three road games, this secondary has given up 12 touchdowns. Expect at least two scores in this game.

RUNNING BACKS: Matt Forte was held to only 11 yards on eight carries in the first meeting but even then he had one touchdown run and added 40 yards on three catches. Forte has been more productive in every other game than the surprise upset by the Seahawks. He even turned in 100+ rushing yards in two of the last three home games. Forte's success will say a lot about how well this game goes and the Seahawks on the road are never as good as they were in that freakish win in week six. The last away trip for the Seahawks resulted in LeGarrette Blount gaining 164 yards on 18 carries. They are not that good.

WIDE RECEIVERS: The Seahawks have one of the worst secondaries in the league and even more so when they hit the road. In the previous meeting with the Bears, they allowed Johnny Knox to gain 120 yards on five catches and Earl Bennett turned in one of his best games with 55 yards on three receptions. Devin Aromashodu had 40 yards on just two catches and Devin Hester ended with two catches for 26 yards.

The Seahawks have allowed 13 scores to wideouts in away games and the Bears have already had success using them. Expect both scores to end up here and Knox should be the most likely to end up with one or both.

TIGHT ENDS: Greg Olsen scored five times this year but none since week 12. He's been logging only one catch in most recent games and had zero catches on four passes in the previous meeting with the Seahawks.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points CHI 20 18 22 23 18 9
Preventing Fantasy Points SEA 28 27 30 17 21 18
Advantage(+) or Disadvantage(-)   8 9 8 -6 3 9

DIVISION
ROUND
SATURDAY SUNDAY
Baltimore at Pittsburgh, 4:30 PM EST Seattle at Chicago, 1 PM EST
Green Bay at Atlanta, 8 PM EST NY Jets at New England 4:30 PM EST
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Tuesday Injury Report
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