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FANTASY FOOTBALL IN-SEASON FEATURES

Predictions & Projections
David Dorey  

Sortable Player Projections | Game Predictions Summary | Projections by Team

WEEK 9
2011
* ATL at IND * DEN at OAK * NYJ at BUF TB at NO
* BAL at PIT * GB at SD SEA at DAL CHI at PHI (mon)
CIN at TEN * MIA at KC * SF at WAS Bye Week
* Updated * CLE at HOU * NYG at NE * STL at ARI CAR, DET, JAC, MIN

Prediction: CLE 13, HOU 23

Update: Peyton Hillis has re-aggravated his hamstring strain and is expected to miss a few weeks. With Hardesty already out, Chris Ogbannaya

The Browns are 3-4 at the bottom of the AFC North and are only 1-2 in road games this year (thank you, Indy). The Texans are on top of the AFC South with a 5-3 record and sport a 3-1 home record. The Browns have only scored 16 points over the last two games - Arian Foster alone can top that.

Cleveland Browns
Homefield: Cleveland Stadium
Grass
  Opp Score   Opp Score
1 CIN 17-27 10 STL -
2 @IND 27-19 11 JAC -
3 MIA 17-16 12 @CIN -
4 TEN 13-31 13 BAL -
5 Bye - 14 @PIT -
6 @OAK 17-24 15 @ARI -
7 SEA 6-3 16 @BAL -
8 @SF 10-20 17 PIT -
9 @HOU -      
Browns Report | Statistics | Roster
CLEVELAND at HOU Rush Catch Pass
QB Colt McCoy 10 - 200,1
RB Peyton Hillis 30 20 -
RB Chris Ogbonnaya 50 30 -
TE Ben Watson - 30,1 -
WR Mohamed Massaquoi - 40 -
WR Greg Little - 50 -
PK Phil Dawson 2 FG 1 XP -
Pregame Notes: The Browns keep failing to get over the hump and are stuck with an offense that cannot score more than 17 points in a game. The backfield has been wracked by injuries and just when it seems the passing effort might be improving, it takes a step backwards. Next week is a homestand against the Rams and a chance for another win but in Houston this week - the Browns just don't have the offense to keep up.

QUARTERBACK: After scoring nine times in the first five weeks, Colt McCoy has only tossed one score over the last two games. He's been right at the 210 yard mark in all road games with one score that defines mediocre. With a rushing attack that has done little to support him this year, McCoy is struggling to get the offense into any rhythm.

The Texans' defense has been better than most realize. Aside from the Drew Brees Experience in week three, they have only allowed six passing scores over seven games played. McCoy will do well enough if he can reach his mediocre standard this week.

RUNNING BACKS: Peyton Hillis missed the last two games with a hamstring strain but may return for this matchup. That would be timely since Montario Hardesty tore his calf and should miss a couple of weeks at the minimum. Chris Ogbonnaya has stepped up in the last two weeks for around 50 or 60 total yards and would share with Hillis should he return. I will project for Hillis back at least in a limited fashion and update as warranted. This is already one of the worst rushing teams in the league and have scored in only one game so far (thanks, Indy).

The Texans at home always sport a tough rushing defense so expect marginal stats here at best and likely a split between Hillis and Ogbonnaya. Even if Ogbonnaya was to get the full load, he'd be hard pressed to post more than mediocre numbers here.

WIDE RECEIVERS: There is still no real fantasy value here. Greg Little looked promising but still has not scored and only gained 31 and 28 yards in the last two games respectively. Josh Cribbs had one of his rare touchdowns in the San Francisco game but there is no reliable fantasy play here aside from some moderate yardage from Little on a good week. I'll assume that Mohamed Massaquoi can return from his concussion of week seven and update accordingly.

TIGHT ENDS: Ben Watson comes off the single game best for a Browns tight end with 64 yards and he has figured in more when the Browns face better secondaries. Evan Moore has dropped back to only about 20 yards or less in games and has no more fantasy value.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points CLE 20 28 26 3 26 27
Preventing Fantasy Points HOU 6 4 12 4 9 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 24-14 17 TEN -
9 CLE -      
Texans Report | Statistics | Roster
HOUSTON vs CLE Rush Catch Pass
QB Matt Schaub - - 220,1
RB Arian Foster 110,1 30 -
RB Ben Tate 40 - -
TE Joel Dreesen - 20,1 -
TE Owen Daniels - 60 -
WR Derrick Mason - 20 -
WR Kevin Walter - 50 -
WR Jacoby Jones - 40 -
PK Neil Rackers 3 FG 2 XP -

Pregame Notes: The Texans followed up their big win in Tennessee with a nice beat on the Jaguars and now find themselves on top of the division with a winning record. Granted, it may be more like the leader in a race emerging from a pileup of cars but the Texans have a very realistic shot at winning their first ever division (Thanks, Indy).

QUARTERBACK: Matt Schaub had scored in every game this year and currently has 13 touchdowns as a passer and even just ran in the ultra rare rushing score. Schaub should be a lock for 220+ yards and a score though the Browns secondary is top notch statistically. But the Browns have never played a top quarterback this year and still allowed a score to nearly every team. If Andre Johnson plays, the chance for two passing scores goes way up but likely just the one will be enough anyway.

RUNNING BACKS: This should be a good week for Arian Foster who has three games of 100+ rushing yards and even topped 100 receiving yards twice already. Ben Tate gets around five to ten carries per week and actually does something with his reduced role. This remains one of the best running units in the league and while the Browns rank well against the run, they have allowed five different runners to gain 90 rushing yards on them already.

This will be a solid game for Foster and could end up a really big one. Tate remains a marginal play since you can only rely on around 40 yards and then hope for better.

WIDE RECEIVERS: While there is a chance that Andre' Johnson could return this week, he would not be 100% recovered from his hamstring surgery. I am counting him out for now and will include him if he can practice and gets upgraded. Without him the offense is left to marginal production from the wideouts which is led by Kevin Walter who has not scored in four games and generally hangs out around 50 yards per week. Jacoby Jones has replaced Johnson for now but has been a nonfactor aside from his one touchdown against the Ravens. There is nothing about this unit that inspires confidence without Johnson there.

TIGHT ENDS: The Browns are much weaker against tight ends and have already allowed five scores to the position. Joel Dreesen has been the main scorer with three touchdowns over the last four weeks though his yardage typically remains low. Owen Daniels is the receiver with the most yardage but he has not scored since week four. Daniels is the better fantasy play with the more certain yardage and he'd be one of the elite he also added the scores that Dreessen gets.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points HOU 11 4 29 6 11 10
Preventing Fantasy Points CLE 3 6 1 20 19 13

WEEK 9
2011
ATL at IND DEN at OAK NYJ at BUF TB at NO
BAL at PIT GB at SD SEA at DAL CHI at PHI (mon)
CIN at TEN MIA at KC SF at WAS Bye Week
  CLE at HOU NYG at NE STL at ARI CAR, DET, JAC, MIN

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