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FANTASY FOOTBALL IN-SEASON FEATURES

Predictions & Projections
David Dorey  

Sortable Player Projections | Game Predictions Summary | Projections by Team

WEEK 6
2011
BUF at NYG * HOU at BAL NO at TB * MIA at NYJ (mon)
CAR at ATL * IND at CIN * PHI at WAS ARI, DEN
CLE at OAK JAC at PIT SF at DET KC, SD
*Updated * DAL at NE * MIN at CHI STL at GB SEA, TEN

Prediction: JAC 3, PIT 24

Players to Watch: None

The Jaguars are on a four game losing streak and just last week had their first game with more than one touchdown when they were beaten by the Bengals. The Jags can still run the ball well but the rookie quarterback has not followed the lead of Cam Newton or even Andy Dalton. They are also 0-2 in road games. The Steelers come off a dominating win over the Titans and finally look like the offense is coming together. And just in time for the Jaguars.

Jacksonville Jaguars
Homefield: J'ville Municipal Stadium
Grass
  Opp Score   Opp Score
1 TEN 16-14 10 @IND -
2 @NYJ 3-32 11 @CLE -
3 @CAR 10-16 12 HOU -
4 NO 10-23 13 SD -
5 CIN 20-30 14 TB -
6 @PIT - 15 @ATL -
7 BAL - 16 @TEN -
8 @HOU - 17 IND -
9 Bye -      
Jaguars Report | Statistics | Roster
JACKSONVILLE at PIT Rush Catch Pass
QB Blaine Gabbert - - 140
RB Maurice Jones-Drew 80 10 -
TE Marcedes Lewis - 20 -
WR Cecil Shorts - not yet -
WR Jason Hill - 40 -
WR Mike Thomas - 50 -
PK Josh Scobee 1 FG 0 XP -
Pregame Notes: The sluggish offense has doomed the Jaguars and there is no sign that it is going to improve anytime soon. Sadly the schedule is getting worse not better and it is looking like a top pick next April is a slam dunk. But this is a rebuilding year with a rookie quarterback that has taken the standard step back has he learns. It's just not going to be very pretty until he does and they Jags may not be in Jacksonville by then.

QUARTERBACK: On the plus side, Blaine Gabbert is getting better every week but that has only built up to 221 yards and one touchdown and even then he lost two fumbles. Gabbert has not scored more than once in any game and that is not likely to change this week in Pittsburgh against a defense that has only given up two passing touchdowns over the last four weeks.

Keep Gabbert on the bench the waiver wire someone else's team.

RUNNING BACKS: The only working part of this offense remains Maurice Jones-Drew who has scored twice and gained at least 84 rushing yards in every game. Troublesome is the lack of any passes in the last two games and he now heads to Pittsburgh where it was thought that the Steelers were getting weaker against the run. Arian Foster shredded them for 155 yards and a score but Chris Johnson only produced 51 yards on 14 carries in Pittsburgh last week.

Jones-Drew has been good every week and while this may be one of his tougher tests, still no reason to bench him. The Steelers are weaker on the run and the Jags will use him even when it does not make much sense.

WIDE RECEIVERS: Just a fantasy wasteland. Mike Thomas has the most potential but that has only meant around 50 or 60 yards per week with just one touchdown on the season. Jason Hill shocked the world last week with 118 yards on five catches with was more than his first four games combined. The rookie Cecil Shorts is learning the business by going out every Sunday and not catching his only throw in the game. Only two scores all season long and heading into Pittsburgh means hands off this crew. Aside from holding Thomas at the bottom of your own depth chart, there is no fantasy value here. The only interesting thing here is seeing when Shorts actually catches that first pass. He just gets the one attempt per week and keeps missing.

TIGHT ENDS: Marcedes Lewis has no real fantasy value with no scores on the year and never more than 38 yards. He's not even worth filling a bye week in a 16 team league.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points JAC 32 18 31 27 27 27
Preventing Fantasy Points PIT 1 22 1 18 2 29


Pittsburgh Steelers
Homefield: Heinz Field
Grass
  Opp Score   Opp Score
1 @BAL 7-35 10 @CIN -
2 SEA 24-0 11 Bye -
3 @IND 23-20 12 @KC -
4 @HOU 10-17 13 CIN -
5 TEN 38-17 14 CLE -
6 JAC - 15 @SF -
7 @ARI - 16 STL -
8 NE - 17 @CLE -
9 BAL -      
Steelers Report | Statistics | Roster
PITTSBURGH vs JAC Rush Catch Pass
QB Ben Roethlisberger - - 250,2
RB Rashard Mendenhall 50,1 10 -
TE Heath Miller - 30,1 -
WR Antonio Brown - 50 -
WR Hines Ward - 40 -
WR Mike Wallace - 90,1 -
PK Shaun Suisham 1 FG 3 XP -

Pregame Notes: The Steelers righted the ship a bit with the big win over the Titans and Ben Roethlisberger had a monster game with five scores while mostly on fantasy benches though. This week is about as easy as it will be for the rest of the season and looming after the Arizona trip are the three games that matter most - NE, BAL and @CIN. That is when the Steelers 2011 fortunes will be decided.

QUARTERBACK: It is the way of the NFL these days. After his first four games only produced three touchdowns, five interceptions and four lost fumbles, Ben Roethlisberger was riding the fantasy pine in more than a few leagues. Facing the good Titans secondary, Big Ben suddenly posted 228 yards and five passing touchdowns. Which one of these are not like the others? It will be hard to determine if Big Ben has made a turnaround or not since the Jaguars bring in a secondary that always allows at least one or two scores and than has been much weaker on the road.

This will not be a shootout by any means and that could depress what Roethlisberger needs to do in the game to win. Safest bet here is another moderate yardage game with likely two scores. He could throw for more but will not need to so that makes it hard to rely on.

RUNNING BACKS: The Steelers expect Rashard Mendenhall to return from his hamstring strain of last week and while he was gone, Isaac Redman was no big fantasy replacement with just 49 yards on 15 carries. Jonathan Dwyer ran for 107 yards thanks to a 76-yard romp that still did not score. This week it all reverts back to normal which means a fairly heavy dose of Mendenhall that is likely to disappoint. Mendenhall still has not gained more than 66 yards in any game and doesn't even catch the ball much.

The Jaguars have been very tough on the run but allowed three touchdowns to the position. I like Mendy to end up with one score to salvage his fantasy value this should be yet another week where he does not meet expectations. Only Darren Sproles has more than 50 rushing yards on this defense.

WIDE RECEIVERS: The bye week forced many owners to rely on Hines Ward knowing he had not scored or had more than about 33 yards since the season opener. Only against the Titans, he turned in 54 yards on seven catches with two touchdowns. It was the first time since the opener that anyone besides Mike Wallace scored as a wide receiver for the Steelers. Wallace had his standard 6-82 and a touchdown last week and is as automatic as any wideout in the game. Hines Ward popped his head up last week and ruined Antonio Brown (2-23) who seemed to be a much better choice going into the game and was subbing for bye weeks in many leagues.

The Jags secondary has been mostly good against wide receivers and only allowed three to score - always the #1 guy for the opponent and no one else even posts decent yardage. Consider Wallace a must start always but this is less attractive for the others than it may seem. Unless it is a #1 wideout, players are not gaining more than around 60 yards on the Jags and never scoring.

TIGHT ENDS: Heath Miller has been a nonfactor this year but then turned in 46 yards on three catches and his first score when they played the Titans. That is germane to this week given that the Jaguars have allowed a touchdown and decent yardage to each of the last four primary tight ends that they have faced. Miller won't get much yardage but he is an excellent shot for a score this week.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points PIT 13 23 5 19 25 29
Preventing Fantasy Points JAC 12 13 5 30 17 21

WEEK 6
2011
BUF at NYG HOU at BAL NO at TB MIA at NYJ (mon)
CAR at ATL IND at CIN PHI at WAS ARI, DEN
CLE at OAK JAC at PIT SF at DET KC, SD
  DAL at NE MIN at CHI STL at GB SEA, TEN

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