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FANTASY FOOTBALL IN-SEASON FEATURES

Predictions & Projections
David Dorey
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The Huddle
WEEK 13
~ 2009 ~
Season Ticket
Thursday
Sunday
Sunday
Sunday
Sunday Late
Sunday
Monday
*updated

Prediction: DEN 23, KC 20

This is the first meeting of these divisional rivals and the Broncos arrive with a 7-4 record and are just one game behind the Chargers. They just ended a four game losing streak and are 3-2 in road games. The Chiefs are only 3-8 on the season and only 1-4 at home.

These teams traded home wins in 2008 with the Chiefs outscoring the Broncos 33-19 and later the Broncos winning their home game 24-17.

Denver Broncos (7-4)
Homefield: Invesco Field
Grass
  Opp Score Spread Over/Under
1 @CIN 12-7 +5 42.5
2 CLE 27-6 -3 38
3 @OAK 23-3 -1.5 35.5
4 DAL 17-10 +3 43
5 NE 20-17 +3.5 41.5
6 @SD 34-23 +3.5 44
7 BYE - - -
8 @BAL 7-30 +4.5 42.5
9 PIT 10-28 +3 49
10 @WAS 17-27 -3.5 36
11 SD 3-32 +6.5 41.5
12 NYG 26-6 +6.5 42
13 @KC - -4.5 38
14 @IND - - -
15 OAK - - -
16 @PHI - - -
17 KC - - -
DEN at KC Rush Catch Pass
QB Kyle Orton     250,2
RB Knowshon Moreno 80 20  
RB Correll Buckhalter 30 30  
TE Tony Scheffler   20  
WR Brandon Marshall   110,2  
WR Eddie Royal   30  
WR Brandon Stokley   20  
PK Matt Prater 3 FG 2 XP  
Pregame Notes: Taking down the visiting Giants last week ended a horrific stretch where the Broncos saw their vaunted defense crumble and suddenly the offense struggled to score more than one touchdown per week. A game such as this one cannot be treated lightly since road trips to face the Colts and Eagles are looming on the horizon. The offense is settling down and needs to bring that same success of last week into this game.

Quarterback: The Broncos won last week but Orton only had one score and 245 yards in the effort with one interception as well. After opening the year with six straight games with scores, Kyle Orton has only thrown for three touchdowns over the last five weeks with five interceptions during that time.

Jay Cutler passed for 361 yards and one score in Kansas City last year.

Orton faces one of the worst secondaries in the league this week and should see his best effort for the last month or more. The last four quarterbacks to play in Kansas City all had at least two scores if not three and never less than 268 passing yards. This is a definite week to get back on track. This will be the softest secondary that Orton will face - by far - until week 17 when he goes against the Chiefs for a second time.

Running Backs: The Broncos relied on Knowshon Moreno for 19 carries last week but also gave Correll Buckhalter 20 attempts after limiting him for the previous month. Moreno scored his third touchdown of the year against the Giants and has been rushing for 80 yards or more for the last three weeks. The addition of Buckhalter last week came in a game that the Broncos were just running to finish out. Which could happen again.

The Broncos only rushed for 88 yards on 20 carries in Kansas City last season.

While the Chiefs rank poorly against the run, that is mostly about road games. There has only been two rushing scores in Kansas City by opponents and no games with more than 92 rushing yards. The split with Buckhalter will keep Moreno from having a big game and he'll likely not score.

Wide Receivers: Eddie Royal had to leave the game last Thursday with a thigh contusion and did not return but I will assume the ten days of rest is enough to get him back on the field where he can continue to produce minimal yardage and never any touchdowns. Brandon Marshall has been hitting extremes in recent games with two efforts over 110 yards sandwiched between games with only 26 yards or less. He has scored in only one game since week five though the defenses have been significantly better.

Royal gained 104 yards on nine catches while Marshall had 77 yards and one score on seven receptions in Kansas City last year.

Marshall should get back to scoring against a soft secondary like this that has already seen four wideouts visit and produce over 125 yards each with one or two scores. Even Royal could step up here but nothing so far says he will repeat anything from last year. Consider Marshall a must start this week.

Tight Ends: Tony Scheffler has been only a marginal contributor this year and while he has two scores and even had 101 yards in San Diego, he has six games with 20 yards or less. No reliable fantasy value here.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points DEN 24 23 15 20 11 8
Preventing Fantasy Points KC 30 27 24 26 29 19


Kansas City Chiefs (3-8)
Homefield: Arrowhead Stadium
Grass
  Opp Score Spread Over/Under
1 @BAL 24-38 +12.5 36
2 OAK 10-13 -4 41
3 @PHI
14-34
+9.5 42.5
4 NYG 16-27 +9 42.5
5 DAL 20-26 +9 42.5
6 @WAS 14-6 +6 37
7 SD 7-37 +5.5 44
8 BYE - - -
9 @JAC 21-24 +6.5 42
10 @OAK 16-10 +1 48
11 PIT 27-24 +10.5 39.5
12 @SD 14-43 +13 44.5
13 DEN - +4.5 38
14 BUF - - -
15 CLE - - -
16 @CIN - - -
17 @DEN - - -
KC vs DEN Rush Catch Pass
QB Matt Cassel     170,1
RB Jamaal Charles 70,1 40  
TE Leonard Pope   10,1  
WR Lance Long   40  
WR Chris Chambers   40  
WR Mark Bradley   30  
PK Ryan Succop 2 FG 2 XP  

Pregame Notes: The glory from beating the Steelers two weeks ago was short lived when the Chargers dismantled the Chiefs by 29 points. But several positives continue to be found including the impressive play of Jamaal Charles who is doing what Larry Johnson never did. It is a rebuilding year that has shown the Chiefs the need for an upgrade in wide receivers since Chambers added an immediate spark but is not a long term answer. There is also immediate speculation that the recently released Charlie Weis will trade the Notre Dame gold for an offensive coordinator spot with the Chiefs.

Quarterback: Matt Cassel has varied greatly in scores and yardage this year but one thing has remained - he has always scored in a home game. And usually twice. He has not passed for more than 253 yards so far and almost half his games ring in with less than 200 yards. The most encouraging fact is that he has not suffered any decline with Dwayne Bowe suspended.

The Chiefs only passed for 160 yards and one touchdown against the visiting Broncos last year.

The Broncos have one of the best secondaries in the league and should hold Cassel to lower yardage and no more than one passing score. Especially now that Bowe is not playing.

Running Backs: Jamal Charles has scored in each of the last three games and those are the only scores by a running back for the Chiefs this year. That's a nice comparison to have. Charles also rushed for 93 yards in two of those three games which was more than Larry Johnson produced in his seven games played this year. Charles is factoring in as a receiver as well as a runner and is helping to add a new dimension to the offense. Understand too that these games have been on the road to Oakland and San Diego and at home against the Steelers.

The Broncos have recently been allowing runners more room and given up four rushing scores over the last four games along with decent yardage. Charles is on a streak right now and should have a decent showing here with his receptions included.

Wide Receivers: With Dwayne Bowe out, Chris Chambers has really stepped up with 119 yards against the Steelers and 70 yards and a score in San Diego. Both Lance Long and Mark Bradley have only minor stats each week and that is the problem. Chambers would naturally match on Champ Bailey anyway and now he is the only receiver of any note. Had Bowe been here it could be different. But Bailey should lock on Chambers are hold him to moderate gains at most.

Expect only marginal numbers for any wideout here.

Tight Ends: The Chargers have not used the tight ends much as a receiver though three times they have scored including just two weeks ago against the Steelers. There will be almost no yardage attached and the Broncos are #1 against the tight end but Leonard Pope is the most likely to score on a reception. The Broncos have allowed two scores to the position including one just last week.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points KC 23 30 17 31 24 31
Preventing Fantasy Points DEN 3 15 10 1 21 14

The Huddle
WEEK 13
~ 2009 ~
Season Ticket
Thursday
Sunday
Sunday
Sunday
Sunday Late
Sunday
Monday
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