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Predictions & Projections
David Dorey
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WEEK 13
2012
NO at ATL (THU) *CLE at OAK *MIN at GB *SEA at CHI
*ARI at NYJ HOU at TEN NE at MIA *SF at STL
CAR at KC *IND at DET *PHI at DAL TB at DEN
*UPDATED *CIN at SD *JAC at BUF *PIT at BAL NYG at WAS (MON)

Prediction: NE 34, MIA 17 (LINE: NE by 7)

Players to Watch: Brian Hartline, Davone Bess

The Patriots swept the Dolphins last year, winning 38-24 at Miami in the season opener and later 27-24 at home.

New England Patriots
Homefield: Gillette Stadium
FieldTurf
  Opp Score   Opp Score
1 @TEN 34-13 10 BUF 37-31
2 ARI 18-20 11 IND 59-24
3 @BAL 30-31 12 @NYJ 49-19
4 @BUF 52-28 13 @MIA -----
5 DEN 31-21 14 HOU -----
6 @SEA 23-24 15 SF -----
7 NYJ 29-26 16 @JAC -----
8 @STL 45-7 17 MIA -----
9 BYE ----- ----- ----- -----
News | Statistics | Roster
NE @ MIA Rush Catch Pass
QB Tom Brady 300,3
WR Julian Edelman 3-30
TE Dwayne Allen 3-30
PK Stephen Gostkowski 2 FG 4 XP

Pregame Notes: The Patriot tradition of being a bully when possible is alive and well with back-to-back wins of 35 and 30 points but in fantasy terms - it's all good. The last four weeks have never scored fewer than 37 points and have averaged almost 48 points per week. Nice month.

Tom Brady already passed for 24 touchdowns this year and seven times surpassed 300 passing yards in a game. His last three road games were three or more touchdowns each. His slower start to the season has sped up plenty in the last six weeks or so and he's back to posting big yardage and scores each week. What is going to be interesting is that this week is in Miami where the Fins have given him problems in the past. Then it is two home games against probably the two toughest defenses in the 49ers and Texans.

Though it was the season opener last year, Brady passed for 517 yards and four touchdowns in Miami.

Shane Vereen is getting plenty of work lately with 12 touches in each of the last two games and he scored in both. He's gaining 40+ rushing yards and notched a touchdown on a 83-yard catch and run last Thursday. But Stevan Ridley scored in each of the last four games and totaled over 90 yards in six different games so far. Ridley is a constant each week with decent yardage and a score. Vereen is mixed in with varying results and Danny Woodhead only gets appreciable work as a receiver when the Patriots play against a good defense and Brady needs the outlet.

With Rob Gronkowski out, the tight ends did little to replace him. Even Aaron Hernandez who finally returned from his ankle injury only caught two passes for 36 yards though he also caught a touchdown that was called back for offensive pass interference. Daniel Fells had his one catch like usual and that was all for the tight ends.

Wes Welker did not have any more or less work with Gronk out. He still had seven catches for 71 yards which is right in the same area as his last five games. Julian Edelman is the one who has seen an uptick with a score in each of the last two games and around 60 yards in each.

Welker caught eight passes for 160 yards and two scores in Miami last season while Aaron Hernandez (7-103, TD) and Rob Gronkowski (6-86, TD) both had big games as well.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points NE 3 2 15 1 2 2
Preventing Fantasy Points MIA 19 5 18 13 23 24

  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
QB Tom Brady, NE NYJ 0000025020 ***
TB12 went for 283-2-0 in the Week 12 trip to New York. he should be good for something similar in the home confines of Gillette Stadium, although not having Josh Gordon makes it a little harder. There are better upside plays, if gambling for points is your thing, but he is a mostly safe start for a couple of TDs given his acceptable history vs. NYJ.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB Sony Michel, NE NYJ 1201000000 ***
Michel ran for 133 yards and a TD in the Week 12 meeting, adding 12 yards via the aerial game. He was quiet for the next three games before reasserting himself against the Bills in Week 16 (18-116-1). This is a fine week to deploy him in any format.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB James White, NE NYJ 3004300000 ***
White scored his first TD of any kind since Week 9 vs. the Bills last weekend, and outside of one game vs. the Vikings, he hasn't been a factor of consequent in the passing game. That includes a one-catch game vs. the Jets in Week 11, but he managed 73 rushing yards. White is a modest play in any PPR format.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Julian Edelman, NE NYJ 007801000 ***
New England needs to win to secure the bye, so expect a full effort. The veteran has been targeted in triple digits each of the past three games, and he has scored twice in that time. Edelman authored a 4-84-1 line in the Week 12 visit to the Jets. He's a strong play in all PPR formats.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Cordarrelle Patterson, NE NYJ 1002300000 ***
Patterson wasn't a factor in the Week 12 meeting, but his role should expand as the Patriots continue to find their way without Josh Gordon. Nevertheless, he isn't playable in Week 17. The matchup is great, but he's just too inconsistent, and New England could attack heavily on the ground.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Chris Hogan, NE NYJ 002300000 *
In Week 15, Hogan scored his first TD since Week 2 but was shut out against Buffalo in Week 16. That was the second time in the last three games he was held without a catch. The Jets provided him two grabs for 47 yards, and he should have a larger role with Josh Gordon out of the mix.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
TE Rob Gronkowski, NE NYJ 003301000 **
Whether it is the back or he just hasn't been able to beat doubles this year, Gronk is not playable without taking a massive risk. He scored once on his trio of grabs vs. the Jets in Week 12 but went for only 56 yards. Play him if you must but with modest results being the most likely outcome.
  Opp fgaFGMxpaXPM ConFac
K Stephen Gostkowski, NE NYJ 3333 ***
No writeup available

Miami Dolphins
Homefield: Dolphins Stadium
Grass
  Opp Score   Opp Score
1 @HOU 10-30 10 TEN 3-37
2 OAK 35-13 11 @BUF 14-19
3 NYJ 20-23 12 SEA 24-21
4 @ARI 21-24 13 NE -----
5 @CIN 17-13 14 @SF -----
6 STL 17-14 15 JAC -----
7 BYE ----- 16 BUF -----
8 @NYJ 30-9 17 @NE -----
9 @IND 20-23 ----- ----- -----
News | Statistics | Roster
MIA vs NE Rush Catch Pass
QB Ryan Tannehill 240,1
RB Frank Gore 80,1 1-10
WR Danny Amendola 1-20

Pregame Notes: The Dolphins are within one win of a .500 season but that may end up at an arm-length away the rest of the year. The Fins need three more wins to end up at 8-8 but have two meetings with the Patriots and a trip to San Francisco left. Short of an upset in one of those three games - assuming they can beat the visiting Jags and Bills - it still leaves them short at 7-9.

No real changes to the offense. Ryan Tannehill remains a game manager with only seven passing touchdowns on the year and usually right around a mediocre 200 pass yards in most games. What's worse is that he only managed two touchdowns in the last three games and yet threw six interceptions over that time period.

Reggie Bush and Daniel Thomas continue to timeshare almost equally and if either gets hot they'll take a but more work that week. Bush shockingly had his second best game of the year when the Seahawks showed up and let him gain 87 yards on 14 runs. Daniel Thomas also ran for 60 yards and a score on just nine runs in that game. Bush may not be back next year but at least he is playing hard. He's expressed interest in remaining in Miami when he hits free agency in March but about all he has gotten back is a smile and nod.

Davone Bess turned in a very uncharacteristic 129 yards on seven catches against the Seahawks secondary which not only was a season best but was about twice his normal production. Brian Hartline has been very quiet in the last few weeks and the reality is that he has three big games against bad secondaries and then abject mediocrity otherwise. All combined the wideouts have only produced three touchdowns this year.

Facing the weak Pats secondary should help passing numbers but at best it means they are average for a day. Hartline is the only receiver play here and that is just in a reception points league where you can live with 80 yards or so.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points MIA 31 4 31 32 31 25
Preventing Fantasy Points NE 30 13 28 32 3 1

  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
QB Ryan Tannehill, MIA @BUF 10000016012 ***
Tannehill threw three touchdown passes in the Week 13 meeting with Buffalo but managed a pathetic 137 yards in the sky and a chortle-inducing -5 yards on the ground. The Bills remain fantasy's toughest defense of the position and shouldn't have too much trouble keeping Tannehill in check.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB Kenyan Drake, MIA @BUF 3015400000 ***
Drake caught two passes and scored on one of them in the Week 13 meeting with Buffalo. Everything else was marginal production, and his role hasn't expanded with Frank Gore no longer on the field. Drake is a risky play in any format, and this projection is quite optimistic.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Kenny Stills, MIA @BUF 004401000 **
Stills has been awfully quiet in the last two games, landing a pair of receptions for 22 yards in total. The Bills gave up four catches, 37 yards and a TD in the game vs. Stills in Week 13. He has chemistry with Ryan Tannehill and is always a threat for the random touchdown. He's a pure boom-or-bust choice.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Danny Amendola, MIA @BUF 003400000 ***
He hasn't scored since Week 7 and has only eight grabs in total over the last four games. Amendola isn't playable in any format, especially with a mostly difficult matchup.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR DeVante Parker, MIA @BUF 002200000 ***
In the past three games, Parker has three catches on eight targets and only 31 total yards. He has just one score on the year, which came in Week 13 against Buffalo on a 4-43-1 line. Trusting him to repeat this performance in any of those stat columns is asking for trouble.
  Opp fgaFGMxpaXPM ConFac
K Jason Sanders, MIA @BUF 1122 ***
No writeup available

WEEK 13
2012
NO at ATL (THU) *CLE at OAK *MIN at GB *SEA at CHI
*ARI at NYJ HOU at TEN NE at MIA *SF at STL
CAR at KC *IND at DET *PHI at DAL TB at DEN
*UPDATED *CIN at SD *JAC at BUF *PIT at BAL NYG at WAS (MON)

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