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FANTASY FOOTBALL IN-SEASON FEATURES

Predictions & Projections
David Dorey  

Sortable Player Projections | Game Predictions Summary | Projections by Team

WEEK 5
2011
*ARI at MIN *NO at CAR *SD at DEN CHI at DET (mon)
CIN at JAC *NYJ at NE *SEA at NYG BYE
GB at ATL OAK at HOU *TB at SF BAL, CLE, DAL
*UPDATED KC at IND PHI at BUF *TEN at PIT MIA, STL, WAS

Prediction: GB 34, ATL 27

Players to Watch: Randall Cobb

The Packers bring their perfect record to Atlanta where the Falcons are 2-2 and still wondering how to shift into a higher gear. So far the Falcons have not beaten any team with a winning record whereas the Packers just always win. No reason to expect a let down by Aaron and the gang here against a team they played twice in 2010.

The Packers won 20-17 in Atlanta last year and then 48-21 in the playoffs.

Green Bay Packers
Homefield: Lambeau Field
Grass
  Opp Score   Opp Score
1 NO 42-34 10 MIN -
2 @CAR 30-23 11 TB -
3 @CHI 27-17 12 @DET -
4 DEN 49-23 13 @NYG -
5 @ATL - 14 OAK -
6 STL - 15 @KC -
7 @MIN - 16 CHI -
8 Bye - 17 DET -
9 @SD -      
Packers Report | Statistics | Roster
GREEN BAY at ATL Rush Catch Pass
QB Aaron Rodgers 20,1 - 300,3
RB Ryan Grant 50 10 -
RB James Starks 40 30 -
TE Jermichael Finley - 50,1 -
WR Greg Jennings - 70,1 -
WR Jordy Nelson - 70,1 -
WR James Jones - 20 -
PK Mason Crosby 2 FG 4 XP -
Pregame Notes: The Packers roll along and this should be the biggest challenge before reaching the week eight bye. They won't win all of their games but it is hard to look ahead and figure out where they are going to slip. They will be favored in each matchup. This is not only a scoring machine, but there is a great defense along for the ride as well.

QUARTERBACK: It wasn't enough for Aaron Rodgers to merely have 12 passing scores on the year and never less than 297 passing yards in every game. Last week he set an NFL record because no one had ever passed for 400 yards and four touchdowns along with rushing in two more scores. He's at the top of the game.

Rodgers passed for 344 and 366 yards in his two games in Atlanta last season. He passed for one score in the regular season and then three touchdowns in the playoffs.

The Falcons just allowed Tarvaris Jackson to pass for 319 yards and 3 scores.

The Falcons just allowed Tarvaris Jackson to pass for 319 yards and 3 scores.

The Falcons just allowed Tarvaris Jackson to pass for 319 yards and 3 scores.

It just seems so surreal. Rodgers looks extra good this week as if he needed it.

RUNNING BACKS: Ryan Grant is back from his kidney problem and will again share with James Starks with the hot hand getting the bulk of the action. So far it is 2 to 1 in favor of Starks. But Grant was great in Chicago in the last game he played with 92 yards on 17 carries. Makes both runners a big risk to rely on and the Falcons have been good against the run this year. There could be a rushing touchdown but flip a coin who gets it - oh wait. Might be Rodgers. Or even John Kuhn. What a mess. I'll give it to Rodgers who is a must start anyway.

Starks ran 25 times for 66 yards in Atlanta last year.

WIDE RECEIVERS: Greg Jennings has been fantasy gold with never a bad game. He has scored in three matchups and topped 100 yards in the last two. Jordy Nelson also has three touchdowns with just a bit less yardage than Jennings each week. The two dominate the receiving numbers though each other wideout has scored once. Donald Driver is hampered by a knee problem but played just enough to score against the Broncos. Randall Cobb is coming on and may end up replacing James Jones as the #3 before the year is out. This is a very productive unit and consistently features Jennings and Jordan.

Jennings had big games in Atlanta, gaining 119 and 101 yards there in 2010. Jordy Nelson scored once on his five catches for 61 yards in the first meeting and then later had 79 yards and a score on eight receptions.

The Falcons secondary is nothing special and has allowed five touchdowns to the position in the last three weeks. Jeremy Maclin went nuts in week two with 13-171 and 2 scores on this defense.

TIGHT ENDS: Jermichael Finley comes off his worst game of the year with only three catches for 28 yards but in both previous road games he was at his best and never gained less than 58 yards. The Falcons have only allowed one score to the position but have not faced any decent receiving tight ends. Finley is safe to start for a moderate game and has upside for a score and bigger yardage.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points GB 1 19 1 9 10 2
Preventing Fantasy Points ATL 24 19 24 4 21 25


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 30-28 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 vs GB Rush Catch Pass
QB Matt Ryan - - 300,3
RB Michael Turner 60 - -
TE Tony Gonzalez - 60,1 -
WR Julio Jones - 110,1 -
WR Roddy White - 60,1 -
WR Harry Douglas - 20 -
PK Matt Bryant 2 FG 3 XP -

Pregame Notes: The Falcons rise to 2-2 when they barely beat the Seahawks and their only other win was at home against the Eagles who lost Michael Vick in the game and yet still almost won. The problem with the Falcons is that the defense has allowed 28+ points in three games and the rushing game is not good enough to control the ball this year in recent games. Matt Ryan has been getting sacked more often as well with 13 on the season. But the Packers have been the worst against passing so at least there should be major fantasy points again this week.

QUARTERBACK: Matt Ryan has been two players so far. On the road, he has three games of 300 or so yards but only two touchdowns total in those. And at home against the Eagles, he only passed for 195 yards but had four touchdowns. The big difference here will be that the Falcons should get the run stuffed and that means lots of passing by Ryan - just like everyone else who plays the Falcons.

Ryan never passed for more than 197 yards and one score against the Packers last year. So far the worst quarterback against the Packers has been Kyle Orton with only 273 yards in Green Bay. Expect 300+ yards and at least two scores and likely three.

RUNNING BACKS: Michael Turner comes off a two touchdown game over the Seahawks but only gained 70 yards on 26 carries. The previous week it was 20 yards on 11 runs in Tampa Bay. In home games against softer rushing defenses, he has been good. This week against the Packers who have not allowed a touchdown to any running back and only 3.6 yards per carry, expect Turner to have just a moderate game and likely not score. His lack of role as a receiver really hurts in games like this.

Turner ran for 110 yard and a score when the Packer first visited Atlanta but was held to only 39 yards and one score in the second meeting.

WIDE RECEIVERS: Although Roddy White has nursed a bruised thigh since the start of the season, he still plays every week after being limited in practice. He has just one touchdown on the season and one game over 100 yards but this will be only his second time at home and he scored on the visiting Eagles three weeks ago. The rookie Julio Jones is already making his mark in a big way with back-to-back games of 6-115 and 11-127. He's primed to get his first score this week against a defense ranked 30th against wide receivers. Harry Douglas is still the slot man but he never had a pass last week and is a nonfactor.

White was held to only 49 yards on five catches in the first meeting and later only managed 57 yards on six catches against the Packers. White scored in the playoff game. But the Packers are much more generous to the position this year so expect a good to great showing by both White and Jones.

TIGHT ENDS: It may be his last season but he is going out in style if it is. Tony Gonzalez has scored once in each of the last three games and averaged 57 yards per week. The Packers have already allowed three scores to the position so consider Gonzo a decent play for some yardage and a good chance for his fourth straight score.

Gonzalez caught six passes for 51 yards and one touchdown when the Packers came to Atlanta last year. In the playoffs he was held to just one catch for seven yards.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points ATL 12 12 22 6 19 16
Preventing Fantasy Points GB 32 4 30 24 17 12

WEEK 5
2011
ARI at MIN NO at CAR SD at DEN CHI at DET (mon)
CIN at JAC NYJ at NE SEA at NYG BYE
GB at ATL OAK at HOU TB at SF BAL, CLE, DAL
  KC at IND PHI at BUF TEN at PIT MIA, STL, WAS

a d v e r t i s e m e n t