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FANTASY FOOTBALL IN-SEASON FEATURES

Predictions & Projections
David Dorey  

Sortable Player Projections | Game Predictions Summary | Projections by Team

WEEK 15
2011
JAC at ATL (thu) * CIN at STL * MIA at BUF SEA at CHI
DAL at TB (sat) * CLE at ARI NE at DEN * TEN at IND
BAL at SD * DET at OAK * NO at MIN WAS at NYG
* UPDATED CAR at HOU GB at KC * NYJ at PHI * PIT at SF (mon)

Prediction: WAS 17, NYG 24

The Giants win over the Cowboys last week ties them for the NFC East at 7-6 and yet they are only 3-3 at home. The Redskins are just 4-9 and 2-4 on the road. This is a replay of the season opener when the Redskins won 28-14 over the visiting Giants. Man, that seems like a long time ago.

Washington Redskins
Homefield: FedEx Field
Grass
  Opp Score   Opp Score
1 NYG 28-14 10 @MIA 9-20
2 ARI 22-21 11 DAL 24-27
3 @DAL 16-18 12 @SEA 23-17
4 @STL 17-10 13 NYJ 19-34
5 Bye - 14 NE 27-34
6 PHI 13-20 15 @NYG -
7 @CAR 20-33 16 MIN -
8 @BUF 0-23 17 @PHI -
9 SF 11-19      
Redskins Report | Statistics | Roster
WASHINGTON at NYG Rush Catch Pass
QB Rex Grossman - - 250,2
RB Roy Helu 90,1 30 -
WR Santana Moss - 70,1 -
WR Jabbar Gaffney - 90,1 -
PK Graham Gano 1 FG 2 XP -
Pregame Notes: Since the week five bye, the Redskins are only 1-8 and while nothing has been formally said, Mike Shanahan has to be on a hot seat. Once again the team was decimated by injury but nothing was really working when everyone was healthy, especially on the offense that still is without a franchise quarterback. This year has done nothing to change speculation that HC Mike Shanahan lucked into John Elway and has never been the same since.

QUARTERBACK: Back in the season opener, Rex Grossman passed for 305 yards and two scores on the Giants and that mirrors three of his last four games where he posted double scores and high yardage. The Giants secondary is no better having been lit up for four touchdowns in each of the last three games though in fairness that was against Aaron Rodgers, Drew Brees and Tony Romo. Against the weak Patriots secondary on Sunday, Grossman only passed for 252 yards. Not having Fred Davis hurts.

This is an interdivisional game and honestly the score should reverse from the season opener. Grossman could end up with bigger yardage and even scores but only if the Giants had a huge early lead and lost interest. The most reliable is a repeat of last week.

RUNNING BACKS: There's hardly any guarantee any starter will remain next year but Roy Helu should be one of the safer guys thanks to three straight games over 100 rushing yards and two scores. Helu has delivered the good in each start he was given and he has been an outstanding receiver every week as well until oddly he was ignored against the Patriots and ended with just two catches for six yards. Back in the season opener, Tim Hightower scored once and gained 72 yards on 25 carries against the Giants.

The Giants are only average against the run and allowed four runners to gain at least 98 rush yards in New York already. Helu should total up decent rush yards and could end up with a big game if the Skins will use him in the pass game again. Helu is still worth the start regardless but could have a big game if he can get another six or more catches.

WIDE RECEIVERS: In the season opener, Santana Moss collected six passes for 76 yards versus the Giants and Jabbar Gaffney opened the year with a touchdown on his three receptions for 54 yards. Moss now comes off a season best effort when he caught three passes for 81 yards and a score while Gaffney also shined with six receptions for 92 yards and a touchdown on the visiting Patriots. While David Anderson also scored last week, Moss and Gaffney are the only two reliable factors in the passing game and there is no doubt that the Skins will need to air it out.

Consider both Moss and Gaffney as decent starts with some upside. Neither will have a monster game here because they never have this year but a decent showing with a good shot at a score for each.

TIGHT ENDS: In case you were wondering who would replace the suspended Fred Davis, the answer is no one. There were no passes thrown to tight ends last week. No fantasy value. Sadly Davis had a season high 105 yards in the season opener against the Giants.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points WAS 19 27 27 12 18 25
Preventing Fantasy Points NYG 30 22 31 27 20 12


New York Giants
Homefield: Meadowlands Stadium
FieldTurf
  Opp Score   Opp Score
1 @WAS 14-28 10 @SF 20-27
2 STL 28-16 11 PHI 10-17
3 @PHI 29-16 12 @NO 24-49
4 @ARI 31-27 13 GB 35-38
5 SEA 25-36 14 @DAL 37-34
6 BUF 27-24 15 WAS -
7 Bye - 16 @NYJ -
8 MIA 20-17 17 DAL -
9 @NE 24-20 - - -
Giants Report | Statistics | Roster
NY GIANTS vs WAS Rush Catch Pass
QB Eli Manning - - 260,2
RB Brandon Jacobs 70,1 - -
RB Ahmad Bradshaw 40 10 -
TE Jake Ballard - 50,1 -
WR Victor Cruz - 80,1 -
WR Hakeem Nicks - 70 -
WR Mario Manningham - 40 -
PK Lawrence Tynes 1 FG 3 XP -

Pregame Notes: The win over the Cowboys may have saved the season though nothing is certain with only three games left to play and the Jets and Cowboys still left on the schedule. Bottom line for the Giants like many other teams is that all they can do it try to win out and see what happens, This home game should be the last "easy" game of the year and one the Giants cannot afford to take too lightly.

QUARTERBACK: No denying that Eli Manning is on a hot streak with five of the last seven games topping 300 passing yards and two of the last three went for 400+ yards. Both were on the road against powerful opponents and back in the season opener, Manning only passed for 268 yards and no touchdowns though he did run in a score for the only time this year.

It is unlikely the Giants are going to get into a shootout like they did against NO, GB and DAL, so a 400 yard, 3 TD game is unlikely. The Giants will do enough to ensure this is a win but there is no reason to roll up the score and this should be a chance for the Giants rushing game to help control the ball.

RUNNING BACKS: Brandon Jacobs comes off a season best 101 yards and two touchdowns against the Cowboys but he was little used in the season opener when he ran for just 29 yards in Washington. Ahmad Bradshaw scored once in that game but only rushed 13 times for 44 yards. Bradshaw has been back for two weeks from his foot problems but has been marginal at best with never more than 47 total yards in a game.

The Redskins are weaker against the run than they were 13 weeks ago and about half of their opponents end up with a 100 yard rusher. They have allowed 12 scores to running backs as well so for this week - have to like Jacobs to score and gain at least moderate yardage. Bradshaw will improve but there is no reason to overuse him this week.

WIDE RECEIVERS: Back in the season opener, Hakeem Nicks had a big game with 122 yards on seven catches while Mario Manningham went for 49 yards on four receptions. Victor Cruz was rightfully still on waiver wires because he had only two targets and did not catch either. Domenik Hixon was the #3 receiver at that time. By now, Nicks is still a valuable wideout and comes off 154 yards in Dallas but has just six scores and three games over 100 yards. Manningham has been much less used for possession with never more than 77 yards in any game but he has scored once in four of the last five matchups. Cruz has become a fantasy stud that shattered expectations and makes cruising the waiver wire a necessarily weekly activity. Cruz has scored seven times and topped 98 yards seven times. He does not always score but he is pretty much a guarantee for 80+ yards each week.

The Skins on the road have still been pretty good in the secondary with only two wideouts scoring on them in road games and none having over 100 yards. Both Nicks and Cruz are must starts but not likely to have a monster game here. There should be one score by a wideout and the worse thing is if Manningham gets it and ruins a decent game for one of the others.

TIGHT ENDS: Jake Ballard gained 59 yards on two catches in the previous meeting with the Redskins and he has been hanging out right around 50 yards for about two months now. Ballard has a decent shot at being the second passing score in this game but his 50 yards are far more reliable.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points NYG 6 12 2 14 23 12
Preventing Fantasy Points WAS 9 19 5 31 31 23

WEEK 15
2011
JAC at ATL (thu) CIN at STL MIA at BUF SEA at CHI
DAL at TB (sat) CLE at ARI NE at DEN TEN at IND
BAL at SD DET at OAK NO at MIN WAS at NYG
  CAR at HOU GB at KC NYJ at PHI PIT at SF (mon)

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