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FANTASY FOOTBALL IN-SEASON FEATURES

Predictions & Projections
David Dorey  

Sortable Player Projections | Game Predictions Summary | Projections by Team

WEEK 4
2011
* ATL at SEA * DET at DAL * NO at JAC * SF at PHI
BUF at CIN * MIA at SD * NYG at ARI * TEN at CLE
CAR at CHI MIN at KC NYJ at BAL * WAS at STL
* UPDATED * DEN at GB * NE at OAK PIT at HOU * IND at TB (mon)

Prediction: ATL 17, SEA 13

Players to Watch: Sidney Rice

Update: Roddy White is listed as questionable with a bruised thigh but is expected to play. He was held out to rest until Friday when he was able to some work.

The Falcons fall to 1-2 since they cannot win a road game while the Seahawks get their first win in their home opener. Here is where those trends reverse but probably not by much. The Falcons are not nearly as good as anticipated and the Seahawks at home are always better.

The Falcons won 34-18 in Seattle last year.

Atlanta Falcons
Homefield: Georgia Dome
FieldTurf
  Opp Score   Opp Score
1 @CHI 12-30 10 NO -
2 PHI 35-31 11 TEN -
3 @TB 13-16 12 MIN -
4 @SEA - 13 @HOU -
5 GB - 14 @CAR -
6 CAR - 15 JAC -
7 @DET - 16 @NO -
8 Bye - 17 TB -
9 @IND - - - -
Falcons Report | Statistics | Roster
ATLANTA at SEA Rush Catch Pass
QB Matt Ryan - - 250,1
RB Michael Turner 70 - -
TE Tony Gonzalez - 40,1 -
WR Julio Jones - 70 -
WR Roddy White - 90,1 -
WR Harry Douglas - 30 -
PK Matt Bryant 1 FG 2 XP -
Pregame Notes: Huge disappointment in Tampa Bay last week but at least this week ends a rough start to the season with three out of four games on the road. Falling behind in the AFC South means this game has to be a win. So far the two road games have combined for only one offensive touchdown. Big passing yards but almost no scores.

QUARTERBACK: While the yardage has been there - over 310 in his road efforts, Matt Ryan has been unable to score on the road and yet in his only home game, Ryan had four touchdowns against the Eagles with only 195 passing yards. The addition of Julio Jones was supposed to help Ryan reach the next level and while that still can happen, apparently it will take a while and won't happen first in road games.

Ryan passed for 174 yards and three touchdowns in Seattle last year.

The Seahawks defense has been better this year and is stopping the run so expect Ryan to throw more this week. But the Seahawks have also not allowed more than one passing score to an opponent so more likely this ends up as a more defensive game. Ryan is not quite as good a fantasy start as it might seem.

RUNNING BACKS: Although Michael Turner almost never shares the ball this year, he has not received the volume of carries to matter much and his minimal role as a receiver further hurts his stock. He had topped 100 rush yards in his first to games but was locked up for only 20 yards on 11 carries in Tampa Bay. The Falcons had to throw more and that takes Turner off the field in most formations. All you can expect here is some rushing yards and probably not a lot since the Seahawks have not allowed more than 66 yards to any runner. He is just a marginal start this week.

Turner gained 82 yards on 25 carries in Seattle last season.

WIDE RECEIVERS: The big passing yards finally translated to Roddy White for the first time this year. White caught nine passes for 140 yards in Tampa Bay but did not score. He had 17 targets in the game as well. Julio Jones recorded his first 100 yard game as well when he turned seven targets into six catches for 115 yards but he still has yet to score. Ironically, Michael Jenkins now with the Vikings has as many touchdowns as White and Jones combined.

White caught seven passes for 65 yards and one touchdown in Seattle last year.

The Seahawks secondary has been their weaker link and both Mike Wallace (8-126, TD) and Larry Fitzgerald (5-64, TD) had decent games against them. That should make White a good play this week with a nice shot at a touchdown. This secondary has only allowed one passing touchdown per opponent. I like two here but not by much.

TIGHT ENDS: This has been a better season for Tony Gonzalez than anticipated. He has scored in each of the last two games and has 173 yards on the season. The Seahawks have been average against the position so expect a moderate yardage game from Gonzo with a decent chance at a touchdown for the third week in a row.

Gonzalez only managed four receptions for 26 yards and no scores in Seattle last season.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points ATL 17 15 22 8 25 12
Preventing Fantasy Points SEA 7 11 13 3 22 29


Seattle Seahawks
Homefield: Qwest Field
FieldTurf
  Opp Score   Opp Score
1 @SF 17-33 10 BAL -
2 @PIT 0-24 11 @STL -
3 ARI 13-10 12 WAS -
4 ATL - 13 PHI -
5 @NYG - 14 STL -
6 Bye - 15 @CHI -
7 @CLE - 16 SF -
8 CIN - 17 @ARI -
9 @DAL -      
Seahawks Report | Statistics | Roster
SEATTLE vs ATL Rush Catch Pass
QB Tarvaris Jackson 10 - 170,1
RB Marshawn Lynch 60 - -
TE Zach Miller - 20 -
WR Sidney Rice - 70,1 -
WR Mike Williams - 20 -
WR Ben Obamanu - 30 -
PK Steven Hauschka 2 FG 1 XP -

Pregame Notes: The Seahawks not only get their first win, but they take down a divisional rival that could count later on when the NFC West is deciding who to send to slaughter in the playoffs. The passing attack remains anemic and the rushing effort has one decent play. But the defense saved the day last week and at home always plays much better.

QUARTERBACK: No need to expound on how badly Tarvaris Jackson is playing. He has thrown for two touchdowns this year - both in week one and has two interceptions and two lost fumbles. He has yet to pass for more than 200 yards in a game. Last week he scored the games only touchdown on a short run into the endzone for his only saving grace.

It matters less what Atlanta allows than what Jackson is capable of doing. No need to consider him for a fantasy start this weekend. The Falcons allowed a rushing score to Josh Freeman last week, but you cannot rely on that happening again.

RUNNING BACKS: Marshawn Lynch seemed to have decent stats for the first time when he turned in 73 yards on 19 carries but that had one 23-yard run. He was stuffed no different than the other games which combined for only 44 rushing yards in two weeks. There is nothing happening in the backfield on this team and the only rushing touchdown belongs to Jackson.

The Falcons are only average against the run but the Seahawks can only aspire to be average one day. No need to start Lynch this week. Or any week it appears.

WIDE RECEIVERS: The great news - in fact about the only news - is that Sidney Rice finally played and had eight catches for 109 yards. He received ten targets which was double any other receiver. Mike Williams was supposed to be intentionally more involved in the offense last week which resulted in just one pass thrown to him that he did not catch. He has been a nonfactor in every game and now is blanked at home when they want to use him. There is no fantasy value here outside of Rice but at least he has started playing and by comparison is already the only weapon the Seahawks have. He seems to have sucked out all value from the rest of the wide receivers and there was not much there to start with.

If Rice can be consistently productive, he may end up as the savior of the offense, at least in easier matchups.

The Falcons secondary has been very good outside of Jeremy Maclin but these are not the Eagles. Consider Rice a decent start this week at home and the most likely to score if it happens at all.


TIGHT ENDS: Zach Miller went from being the leading receiver in Oakland to now having five catches for 31 yards in his three games combined as a Seahawk. He is not that great of a blocker so why the Seahawks acquired him now seems even harder to fathom.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points SEA 27 32 24 32 29 31
Preventing Fantasy Points ATL 21 22 15 9 29 31

WEEK 4
2011
ATL at SEA DET at DAL NO at JAC SF at PHI
BUF at CIN MIA at SD NYG at ARI TEN at CLE
CAR at CHI MIN at KC NYJ at BAL WAS at STL
  DEN at GB NE at OAK PIT at HOU IND at TB (mon)

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