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Predictions & Projections
David Dorey  

Sortable Player Projections | Game Predictions Summary | Projections by Team

WEEK 8
2011
* ARI at BAL * DET at DEN * MIN at CAR * SD at KC (mon)
* CIN at SEA IND at TEN * NE at PIT Bye Week
* CLE at SF * JAC at HOU * NO at STL ATL, CHI, GB
* Updated DAL at PHI * MIA at NYG WAS at BUF NYJ, OAK, TB

Prediction: JAC 10, HOU 20

Players to Watch: Jason Hill

Update: Andre Johnson is still held out because of his hamstring and has been removed from the projections.

The Jaguars come off their less than exciting win over the Ravens but at 2-5 they trail these Texans by two games in the AFC South, The Texans come off their big time stomp over the Titans in Tennessee and are all alone atop the division. With the demise of the Colts, the Texans have become the one to beat.

The Jaguars won 31-24 when the Texans visited last season.

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 13-17 15 @ATL -
7 BAL 9-7 16 @TEN -
8 @HOU - 17 IND -
9 Bye -      
Jaguars Report | Statistics | Roster
JACKSONVILLE at HOU Rush Catch Pass
QB Blaine Gabbert - - 140,1
RB Maurice Jones-Drew 90 10 -
TE Marcedes Lewis - 10 -
WR Cecil Shorts - 0 -
WR Jason Hill - 60,1 -
WR Mike Thomas - 50 -
PK Josh Scobee 1 FG 1 XP -
Pregame Notes: The Jaguars played tremendous defense against the Ravens on Monday night and a win here would set them up well for a title run. Problem is that the Jags are only 0-3 on the road and the offense struggles to post any points. The team currently ranks #32 in quarterback fantasy points and relies on Maurice Jones-Drew for nearly the entire offense. On the road, that just is not good enough.

QUARTERBACK: Blaine Gabbert is still learning the ropes but along the way he is not posting many points. He has thrown for no more than one touchdown in any game and has just four scores in his six games played. Worse yet, he has never thrown for more than 139 yards in any road game.

Set that next to the Texans secondary that has been much improved this year and there is no reason to rely on Gabbert this week or any in the near future.

RUNNING BACKS: Despite the lackluster passing, Maurice Jones-Drew has been a strong runner in every game and never once failed to gain less than 88 yards in any game. That is amazing considering it is attached to the least productive passing attack and defenses have nothing else to defend besides Jones-Drew. Relevant this week is that Jones-Drew only has two touchdowns on the season and none in road games.

MJD did not play in Houston last year but Rashad Jennings scored once on his 22 runs for 108 yards.

The Texans have been very good against the run though losing Mario Williams won't help. Then again, they just crushed the Titans and held the Player Formerly Known As Chris Johnson to only 18 rushing yards. Jones-Drew is a must start each week but is not likely to score or have a big game here.

WIDE RECEIVERS: The Jaguars have resigned Mike Sims-Walker and that may have to do with the rookie Cecil Shorts who must be setting some sort of record. Shorts has played in six games and been thrown one or two passes in each and yet still has no catches. Mike Thomas is good for some yardage except when facing a top secondary that always shuts him down. Sims-Walker was speculated to take over his old split end spot but Jason Hill is actually doing something with the position. Hill played with the 49ers for three unproductive years but now has two touchdowns over the last three weeks and against the Bengals gained 118 yards. he even led receivers with four receptions for 62 yards against the Ravens. He's only 26 years old and lately has been Gabbert's favorite target. A definite grab and hold for a dynasty team.

Any touchdown pass is most likely to end up here but it is a coin flip which wideout would catch it and likely marginal yardage at best for both players.

TIGHT ENDS: No fantasy value, no touchdowns and hardly any yardage.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points JAC 32 21 31 30 22 30
Preventing Fantasy Points HOU 6 6 14 4 15 2


Houston Texans
Homefield: Reliant Stadium
Grass
  Opp Score   Opp Score
1 IND 34-7 10 @TB -
2 @MIA 23-13 11 Bye -
3 @NO 33-40 12 @JAC -
4 PIT 17-10 13 ATL -
5 OAK 20-25 14 @CIN -
6 @BAL 14-29 15 CAR -
7 @TEN 41-7 16 @IND -
8 JAC - 17 TEN -
9 CLE -      
Texans Report | Statistics | Roster
HOUSTON vs JAC Rush Catch Pass
QB Matt Schaub - - 230,1
RB Arian Foster 90,1 50 -
RB Ben Tate 30 - -
TE Joel Dreesen - 20,1 -
TE Owen Daniels - 60 -
WR Andre' Johnson - 50 -
WR Kevin Walter - 70 -
WR Derrick Mason - 30 -
PK Neil Rackers 3 FG 2 XP -

Pregame Notes: Who needs Andre Johnson? The Texans went into Tennessee with the division title on their mind and destroyed them in every facet of the game. Andre Johnson may be back this week but the Texans lost FS Danieal Manning who broke his leg. That will hurt the pass coverage but not this weekend. This could be a slight let down after the big win in Tennessee but a divisional rival should keep the Texans focused.

QUARTERBACK: While he has only two games over 300 yards, Matt Schaub has passed for a score in every game and currently has 12 touchdowns against only five interceptions. Schaub hasn't really missed Johnson as much as would be assumed but his return is an obvious major plus. Schaub is usually most impacted by the success of the rushing game.

Schaub passed for 253 yards and one score on the visiting Jaguars last year.

The Jags have allowed at least one score to every opposing quarterback though the yardage is usually below the 200 mark. That fits into Schaub's normal output.

RUNNING BACKS: Arian Foster comes off his first monster game of the year when he ripped up the Titans for two scores and 115 rushing yards and tacked on 119 yards as a receiver with a third touchdown. That beatdown was so complete that even Ben Tate had 104 yards on 15 runs. This is one of the premiere rushing units in the league and at home the dual threat Foster is a lock for at least big total yardage.

Foster not only gained 180 yards and two scores on 31 rushes on the Texans last year, even Derrick Ward gained 63 yards and a touchdown in the game.

The Jags held Ray Rice to only 28 rush yards on Monday but on the road the previous week allowed Rashard Mendenhall to have a season best 146 yards and a score. No worries about Foster this week - he should post no less than good yardage and has an excellent chance for a score.

WIDE RECEIVERS: There is a chance that Andre' Johnson returns this week from his hamstring surgery but his practices will determine if he is ready. I will assume that he can return but will take it easier in this first week back without playing all the snaps. Updates as warranted. Kevin Walter had 81 yards and a score in the last home game but then marginal stats in the last two weeks. Jacoby Jones showed up in Baltimore with a touchdown but then has done nothing in all other games. Johnson would be an obvious spark to the unit. Derrick Mason only caugbht three passes for 27 yards against his old team. He's just veteran depth for the Texans.

The Jaguars secondary has not allowed a 100 yard game to a wideout since the season opener but the six touchdowns allowed all went to the #1 wideout of the opponent. A healthy Johnson could score here but you can only bank on moderate yardage from this until this week. None of them make much more than a very low end bye week filler.

TIGHT ENDS: Owen Daniels has remained productive in nearly every game and four of his last five outings posted 70+ yards. But he has not scored since week four when he was on a three game streak and Johnson was still playing. Joel Dreesen almost never has any yardage but has scored in two of the last three games so there is no truly safe play aside from Daniels producing yardage. The Jaguars are weaker against the position with four touchdowns already allowed. and two tight ends gaining over 100 yards on them.

Daniels scored once on his five catches for 62 yards when the Texans visited last season.

I like the score to end up here but it could be either tight end. I'll credit Dreesen as a place holder.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points HOU 14 3 27 4 7 8
Preventing Fantasy Points JAC 9 10 9 26 5 17

WEEK 8
2011
ARI at BAL DET at DEN MIN at CAR SD at KC (mon)
CIN at SEA IND at TEN NE at PIT Bye Week
CLE at SF JAC at HOU NO at STL ATL, CHI, GB
  DAL at PHI MIA at NYG WAS at BUF NYJ, OAK, TB

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