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Predictions & Projections
David Dorey  

Sortable Player Projections | Game Predictions Summary | Projections by Team

WEEK 2
2011
ARI at WAS CLE at IND * JAC at NYJ SD at NE
BAL at TEN * DAL at SF * KC at DET SEA at PIT
* CHI at NO GB at CAR * OAK at BUF TB at MIN
*updated * CIN at DEN * HOU at MIA PHI at ATL * STL at NYG (mon)

Prediction: DAL 27, SF 13

Players to Watch: Braylon Edwards

Update: Miles Austin has been limited in practices with his sore knee but has been upgraded to probable and is expected to play. Dez Bryant has not practiced because of his thigh and will be a game time decision. Even Jerry Jones said that Bryant does not need practice to play but it is an obvious risk to rely on him. Check the inactives if you really want to use him but understand the risk even if he plays. I am lowering projections for him now at the least.

For the good that the Cowboys did - and there was good play on both sides of the ball - it all ended in a familiar way with Tony Romo assuming the whipping boy persona again in their collapse to the Jets. The 49ers outlasted the Seahawks but mainly because Ted Ginn Jr. returned a kick and a punt for touchdowns in the final four minutes of the game for the win. That Ted Ginn Jr. Could produce a game winning play only goes to illustrate that every over-priced first round bust dog eventually has his day.

Dallas Cowboys
Homefield: Cowboys Stadium
RealGrass
  Opp Score   Opp Score
1 @NYJ 24-27 10 BUF -
2 @SF - 11 @WAS -
3 WAS - 12 MIA -
4 DET - 13 @ARI -
5 Bye - 14 NYG -
6 @NE - 15 @TB -
7 STL - 16 PHI -
8 @PHI - 17 @NYG -
9 SEA -      
Cowboys Report | Statistics | Roster
DALLAS at SF Rush Catch Pass
QB Tony Romo - - 280,2
RB Felix Jones 60 20 -
TE Jason Witten - 70,1 -
WR Kevin Ogletree - 20 -
WR Dez Bryant - 50 -
WR Miles Austin - 100,1 -
PK Dan Bailey 2 FG 3 XP -
Pregame Notes: The gaffs by Tony Romo - a fumble and an interception - hid the fact that the Cowboys came into New York and not only outplayed the Jets but outplayed themselves. Romo passed like it was 2009 again and the Dallas defense was decimated by injuries and yet was so aggressive that the Jets were unable to take advantage much in the game. The needle points up for potential and promise, just like every year until reality mule kicks them.

QUARTERBACK: Despite taking the blame for the loss, Tony Romo was a fantasy gem throwing for 342 yards and two scores in New York against one of the best defenses in the NFL. His late fumble and interception sealed the Cowboys' fate but the good news is that he looked in 2009 form and used all of his weapons. He gets to face a secondary that just gave Tarvaris Jackson two passing touchdowns. That has to be really encouraging for this week.

RUNNING BACKS: Felix Jones was able to score once in New York but only gained 44 yards on 17 carries against a tough Jets defense. He added three catches for 22 yards as well. Jones took a heavy load as the primary back and DeMarco Murray only pitched in two carries for no gain. This remains the Felix Jones show at least until he is injured again. This week should be a little better to show what the offense can do away from the Jets.

Jones is less likely to score on the road but should have moderate to good yardage.

WIDE RECEIVERS: Hidden in the loss was that the Cowboys went after the Jets top corners and had success. Dez Bryant ended with 71 yards and a score on three catches and Miles Austin gained 90 yards on five receptions and a score as well. Kevin Ogletree is an afterthought but the two main starters are showing up already even when playing arguably the best secondary in the league. Both of the scores by the Seahawks went to wideouts who are far less talented than Bryant and Austin who are must starts this week.

Bryant suffered a bruised quad last week but did not leave the game. He has since been taken off of punt return duties (where the injury happened) and is so far expected to play without any problems this week. Updates as warranted.

TIGHT ENDS: Did not take long for Romo to reassert his relationship with Jason Witten. The favorite outlet for Romo went for 110 yards on six catches last week and is a must start.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points DAL 9 22 8 8 21 15
Preventing Fantasy Points SF 12 1 23 6 10 1


San Francisco 49ers
Homefield: Monster Park
Grass
  Opp Score   Opp Score
1 SEA 33-17 10 NYG -
2 DAL - 11 ARI -
3 @CIN - 12 @BAL -
4 @PHI - 13 STL -
5 TB - 14 @ARI -
6 @DET - 15 PIT -
7 Bye - 16 @SEA -
8 CLE - 17 @STL -
9 @WAS -      
49ers Report | Statistics | Roster
SAN FRANCISCO vs DAL Rush Catch Pass
QB Alex Smith 20 - 220,1
RB Frank Gore 50 20 -
TE Vernon Davis - 60 -
WR Josh Morgan - 40 -
WR Braylon Edwards - 70,1 -
WR Michael Crabtree - 30 -
PK David Akers 2 FG 1 XP -

Pregame Notes: A win is a win even if it takes two return touchdowns in the span of one minute at the end of a game. The 49ers start their year with the rare win and begin to install their 9th new offense in the last 13 years. And therein lies the problem. The team has been in one long rebuilding mode that merely gets reset to zero every season. The opening win was great but the next one may take a while.

QUARTERBACK: Alex Smith only passed for 124 yards against the Seahawks but he ran in one score and had no turnovers. He's little more than a game manager really but there is no dominating other aspect to the team to ensure wins. He faces a weak Dallas secondary this week but the suddenly aggressive blitzing is likely to be a big problem.

No reason to start Smith this week, even with the Cowboys secondary being weak.

RUNNING BACKS: It was a bad sign. Frank Gore only gained 59 yards on 22 carries against the visiting Seahawks and had just 19 yards on three receptions. Gore needs to be the centerpiece of the offense and yet 25 touches only resulted in 78 yards and no scores at home against an average Seattle defense. Kendall Hunter only had two runs and is no threat to Gore on the plus side but Gore is unable to carry this offense by himself and is getting no help from the blocking or passing game.

Gore is only a moderate play this week at best. The Cowboys held the Jets to only 42 yards on 15 carries last week.

WIDE RECEIVERS: it only gets darker really. Michael Crabtree still has not healed from his foot surgery and is playing tremendous pain according to him. That may help explain why he only had one catch for four yards this week. Now the only wide out of any note is Braylon Edwards who needs to step up into being the #1 guy here (whatever that means). Last week it only meant 27 yards on three catches. The Dallas secondary is very banged up and allowed Mark Sanchez 335 yards and two touchdowns.

Expect a decent showing by Edwards and a hint if he might have ongoing value this year or if the 49ers wideouts will all be fantasy busts. If he can establish some chemistry with Smith, he might end up a WR3 for your team.

TIGHT ENDS: Vernon Davis only had 47 yards on five receptions last week but that led the entire offense. The new offense still makes extensive use of him but he'll need more than 47 yards per week to have any fantasy significance. A softer Dallas secondary should see Davis post bigger stats this week.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points SF 27 28 31 21 1 1
Preventing Fantasy Points DAL 23 10 18 27 24 21

WEEK 2
2011
ARI at WAS CLE at IND JAC at NYJ SD at NE
BAL at TEN DAL at SF KC at DET SEA at PIT
CHI at NO GB at CAR OAK at BUF TB at MIN
  CIN at DEN HOU at MIA PHI at ATL STL at NYG (mon)

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