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Predictions & Projections
David Dorey  

Sortable Player Projections | Game Predictions Summary | Projections by Team

WEEK 17
2011
BAL at CIN * DAL at NYG * NYJ at MIA SF at STL
* BUF at NE DET at GB PIT at CLE TB at ATL
CAR at NO * IND at JAC * SD at OAK * TEN at HOU
* UPDATED CHI at MIN * KC at DEN SEA at ARI * WAS at PHI

Prediction: DET 24, GB 17

Unfortunately this game is hard to call because the Packers have already clinched the #1 seed and won't be playing big name starters probably in the second half if not earlier. But the Lions have already clinched the wildcard and the only thing they are going for is which team do they want to play in the playoffs. But they cannot know who that would be with the DAL/NYG game the late ESPN game. But the bottom line here - if the Lions do not get the first wild card, they cannot avoid likely playing the Packers in the second round. That should be motivating.

This is a replay of week 12 when the Packers won 27-15 in Detroit.

Detroit Lions
Homefield: Ford Field
FieldTurf
  Opp Score   Opp Score
1 @TB 27-20 10 @CHI 13-37
2 KC 48-3 11 CAR 49-35
3 @MIN 26-23 12 GB 15-27
4 @DAL 34-30 13 @NO 17-31
5 CHI 24-13 14 MIN 34-28
6 SF 19-25 15 @OAK 28-27
7 ATL 16-23 16 SD 38-10
8 @DEN 45-10 17 @GB -
9 Bye -      
Lions Report | Statistics | Roster
DETROIT at GB Rush Catch Pass
QB Matthew Stafford - - 300,2
RB Kevin Smith 70,1 30 -
TE Brandon Pettigrew - 50,1 -
WR Calvin Johnson - 90,1 -
WR Titus Young - 40 -
WR Nate Burleson - 60 -
PK Jason Hanson 1 FG 3 XP -
Pregame Notes: Sadly the one year the Lions put it all together and have a shot at a 11-5 record they cannot possibly win their own division. But it has already been a successful season by any measure and even with the loss of Jahvid Best early in the year. Matt Stafford has been the glue and made the difference and picking up the latest version of Kevin Smith has helped the offense as well.

QUARTERBACK: Matthew Stafford passed for 276 yards and one touchdown in the previous meeting but the Packers may elect to not use the entire secondary all game meaning late fourth quarter fun time. Stafford has a full complement of receivers in the lineup so he should have a decent game here that may end up as a big one - depending on what the Packers want to allow.

RUNNING BACKS: Keiland Williams scored once in the previous meeting and that was the game where Kevin Smith totaled 80 yards in the first quarter and then left with a bad ankle. Smith was in good form last week with two touchdowns and 61 total yards on the Chargers.

The Packers have really not been that great against the run, they just usually get so far ahead that opponents all abandon the rushing game. Assuming some free rein later in the game, this should be a nice showing for Smith unless they try to save him for the playoffs as well and opt for Williams or Maurice Morris.

WIDE RECEIVERS: The wide receivers were marginally effective in the first meeting with Calvin Johnson scoring once on only four receptions for 49 yards and Nate Burleson turned five catches into only 39 yards. Titus Young was held to just one catch but this time around. Chances are the Packers will allow much more production this time around but Johnson is still the only safe start of the group.

TIGHT ENDS: Brandon Pettigrew was only good for 27 yards on four catches in the last matchup but has been turning in 50+ yards for three straight weeks along with two scores. It is all a risk this week but Pettigrew should turn in at least a decent showing and has a good shot at another touchdown.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points DET 5 16 3 4 10 1
Preventing Fantasy Points GB 27 16 28 32 6 5


Green Bay Packers
Homefield: Lambeau Field
Grass
  Opp Score   Opp Score
1 NO 42-34 10 MIN 45-7
2 @CAR 30-23 11 TB 35-26
3 @CHI 27-17 12 @DET 27-15
4 DEN 49-23 13 @NYG 38-35
5 @ATL 25-14 14 OAK 46-16
6 STL 24-3 15 @KC 14-19
7 @MIN 33-27 16 CHI 35-21
8 Bye - 17 DET -
9 @SD 45-38      
Packers Report | Statistics | Roster
GREEN BAY vs DET Rush Catch Pass
QB Aaron Rodgers - - 100,1
RB Brandon Saine 40 30 -
TE Jermichael Finley - 30 -
WR Jordy Nelson - 50,1 -
WR Donald Driver - 30,1 -
WR James Jones - 50 -
PK Mason Crosby 1 FG 2 XP -

Pregame Notes: And this is why most leagues do not use week 17 for determining champions. The Packers have nothing to play for other than a little work to remain sharp but with a Boy Named Suh on the other side of the line of scrimmage, no one wants to risk injury to, oh say, Aaron Rodgers. This is not going to be a game to rely on any of the players really because there is no way of knowing who does what other than Rodgers is a lock to play sparingly.

QUARTERBACK: Matt Flynn will take over at some point but even he is a risk to rely on because it is not certain what receivers he will have to throw to. Assume that Rodgers stays on the field long enough for one or two good drives but anything else would be a surprise. This is not time to get him injured in a meaningless game.

RUNNING BACKS:James Starks is likely to sit this one out with his right ankle hurting again. Even Ryan Grant may be limited in the game since the Packers are likely to allow Brandon Saine a chance to get some work in. The Lions already have one of the better rushing defenses and going against a stripped down version of the Packers won't make it any easier for Saine and maybe Grant.

Safest bet - avoid the backfield. I'll project for Saine since he is the only one that is almost a lock to play a meaningful amount.

WIDE RECEIVERS: Same dealio. Greg Jennings remains out and normally this is where you have to start Jordy Nelson who always scores at home if not adds a ton of yardage. And usually wide receivers are not pulled from games until late because they do not incur the same injuries that quarterbacks and running backs are susceptible. But relying on any is a risk. This is all hard to predict as the Packers will play it by ear who remains on the field and how well Matt Flynn does whenever he takes over.

TIGHT ENDS: Jermichael Finley only caught two passes for 38 yards in the first meeting. This time around even that is hard to rely on.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points GB 1 27 1 10 5 3
Preventing Fantasy Points DET 21 10 22 7 27 19

WEEK 17
2011
BAL at CIN DAL at NYG NYJ at MIA SF at STL
BUF at NE DET at GB PIT at CLE TB at ATL
CAR at NO IND at JAC SD at OAK TEN at HOU
  CHI at MIN KC at DEN SEA at ARI WAS at PHI

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