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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: TB 20, DEN 27 (LINE: DEN by 8)

Players to Watch: Vincent Jackson

The Buccaneers slip to 6-5 after their loss in Atlanta but are 3-2 on the road. The 8-3 Broncos are 4-1 at home and on a six game winning streak. This should be an interesting game, but mostly because Manning goes against one of the worst secondaries in the NFL.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Homefield: Raymond James Stadium
Grass
  Opp Score   Opp Score
1 CAR 16-10 10 SD 34-24
2 @NYG 34-41 11 @CAR 27-21
3 @DAL 10-16 12 ATL 23-24
4 WAS 22-24 13 @DEN -----
5 BYE ----- 14 PHI -----
6 KC 38-10 15 @NO -----
7 NO 28-35 16 STL -----
8 @MIN 36-17 17 @ATL -----
9 @OAK 42-32 ----- ----- -----
News | Statistics | Roster
TB @ DEN Rush Catch Pass
QB Ryan Fitzpatrick 230,2
RB Doug Martin 90 5-30
RB Jacquizz Rodgers 30 4-30
PK Nick Folk 1 FG 3 XP

Pregame Notes: After six straight games with multiple scores, it was a sad surprise to Josh Freeman owners to see him only gain 256 yards against the Falcons last week with no touchdowns. The Falcons have been rejuvenated by both the rushing of Doug Martin and the passing of Freeman. The Buccaneers did go through an incredibly kind stretch of games starting in week four and the passing stats reflected it. Fortunately there is only this week and the week 17 finale in Atlanta that should be a problem. Then again, winning right now is all about making your playoffs.

Doug Martin was held to only 50 yards on 21 runs by the Falcons but he still ended up with two touchdowns which gives him ten touchdowns on the season. One oddity with Martin is that he has only three games with over 100 yards. In those three, he scored seven of his touchdowns. And all three were road games. He's used heavily as a runner and a receiver which ensures solid production each week.

The Bucs are using the tight ends more in recent weeks and Dallas Clark not only scored in weeks 10 and 11, but his best two yardage games were the last two that he played - 7-58 in Carolina and 4-65 versus the Falcons.

The wideouts have been cranking out the big games at least for Vincent Jackson who topped 90 yards in each of the last two games despite playing good secondaries. Mike Williams really tailed off in the last two weeks but has been solid with 60+ yard games for most of the year. Williams would match on Champ Bailey but chances are they'll stick him on Vincent Jackson as much as they can since he's the one that does the most damage.

This is a really good test for the Buccaneers and another very good defense to face. There is no big weakness to exploit in Denver and since there is a distinct chance that Manning has fun against the Bucs poor secondary, this game will move to the air for the Bucs sooner than later.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points TB 14 5 9 24 7 14
Preventing Fantasy Points DEN 12 8 8 30 4 15

  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
QB Ryan Fitzpatrick, TB @MIA 0000025010 ***
Fitz once again starts in place of the injured Jameis Winston. Miami was whacked in Week 10 and presents an interesting matchup. Quarterbacks have averaged only 226.4 passing yards, which is the 10th fewest, but have thrown a touchdown once every 8.7 completions -- the second-softest clip in football.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB Doug Martin, TB @MIA 500000000 ***
Despite a great matchup, Martin isn't a top candidate for fantasy success. Say he has a better game than expected, the floor is awfully low and the ceiling is relatively low, as well. Miami is a much better opponent for gamers in non-PPR scoring.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB Charles Sims, TB @MIA 1003200000 ***
In the last five games, Miami has given up just 19 receptions (28th) and 31.8 yards (26th) per game. One of those catches scored.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Mike Evans, TB @MIA 004701000 ***
A one-game break is over, and Evans will return from his suspension for a blindside hit two weeks ago. The Buccaneers remain without Jameis Winston (shoulder). Miami should be a reasonable opponent for exploitation purposes. While the reception volume is low against this defense, wideouts have found the end zone at the highest clip in football when facing Miami.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR DeSean Jackson, TB @MIA 004500000 ***
Mike Evans returns this week and pushes D-Jax back into sitting shotgun. The Dolphins have surrendered wide receiver touchdowns at the highest rate of any team, which is interesting since this is the fifth-best defense at limiting catches. Sounds exactly like a matchup for Jackson to exploit, so there is at least some upside to this conservative projection.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Adam Humphries, TB @MIA 003300000 ***
Humphries will continue to work out of the slot and have a minor role in the offense. Playing him is asking for trouble. Miami has given up only 9.6 receptions per contest to wideouts, although one in 6.9 have scored.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
TE Cameron Brate, TB @MIA 004500000 *
Tight ends have posted healthy numbers when facing Miami. The position has averaged 5.6 snares for 57.8 yards and a score every 9.3 receptions -- all top-12 figures.
  Opp fgaFGMxpaXPM ConFac
K Patrick Murray, TB @MIA 3311 ***
A 3.8 XPA-per-game average is tops in football. Allowing just six of the eight field goals, spread over five games, is far from encouraging, though.

Denver Broncos
Homefield: Invesco Field
Grass
  Opp Score   Opp Score
1 PIT 31-19 10 @CAR 36-14
2 @ATL 21-27 11 SD 30-23
3 HOU 25-31 12 @KC 17-9
4 OAK 37-6 13 TB -----
5 @NE 21-31 14 @OAK -----
6 @SD 35-24 15 @BAL -----
7 BYE ----- 16 CLE -----
8 NO 34-14 17 KC -----
9 @CIN 31-23 ----- ----- -----
News | Statistics | Roster
vs Rush Catch Pass
RB Jamaal Charles 100,1 6-40
WR Emmanuel Sanders 4-60
WR Demaryius Thomas 5-110,1

Pregame Notes: The Broncos already have a four game lead in the AFC West so that's in the bag. They still trail the Ravens by a game to get the coveted first round bye so that game in Baltimore in week 15 may be for a week off in January. There is no doubt that the Broncos will be heavily favored in all other games. With any luck, Denver wins in week 15 and then has to play it all out to maintain their #2 seed.

Peyton Manning is back at home this week and facing probably the weakest secondary so far this year. That's a good thing for a quarterback who has passed for more than 270 yards in each of the last nine games and almost always posts three passing scores when at home. This is going to be a nice time to own Manning... sort of like the rest of the year.

The only change on the Broncos has been replacing Willis McGahee. While Ronnie Hillman seemed a perfectly reasonable replacement since he was the #2 back, the went "another direction". Not only did they start Knowshon Moreno against the Chiefs, he was given 20 carries to gain 85 yards while Hillman was limited to just three runs for nine yards. Hill even was not thrown a pass for just the second time all year. Moreno sat in the shadows for the last ten weeks as a game day inactive but he's back to being a starting tailback. It's like the ghost of Shanahan still lives in Denver.

This week is even more of a must-start for Demaryius Thomas who Manning recently said needs the ball more. And for Eric Decker. In a pinch? Even Brandon Stokley may end up with more than his usual 50 yards. Thomas has six scores on the year including in both the most recent games. Thomas really shines when a bad secondary shows up and he should be a lock for a nice game that could be a monster. Decker should end up with a score as well though his possession role doesn't often add up to many yards.

The Buccaneers offense is good enough to post points and not allow Denver to feel comfortable without a pretty big lead. This is one of those dream fantasy matchups for the passing effort.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points DEN 7 17 2 6 15 3
Preventing Fantasy Points TB 29 18 31 21 6 6

  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
QB Brock Osweiler, DEN CIN 0000023011 ***
There's nothing great about the matchup. The best rating is this is the 15th-easiest team to score a TD against via the pass. Every other notable metric ranks below average.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB C.J. Anderson, DEN CIN 5001100000 ***
A three-way backfield has robbed Anderson of much of his upside for fantasy purposes. The Bengals have been a good source for points via rushing yards and receiving yards, though that is where the fun ends.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB Devontae Booker, DEN CIN 2003200000 ***
Cincinnati has yielded the fifth-most yardage a week, but only two of 127 carries has gone the distance in the last four games. Despite the good matchup, Booker should be avoided.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
RB Jamaal Charles, DEN CIN 300000000 ***
There is no viable reason to play Charles, regardless of the matchup. This one just happens to be good.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Demaryius Thomas, DEN CIN 004601000 ***
Thomas scored last week to salvage an otherwise pedestrian effort. The Bengals are a tougher opponent, giving up only 10.5 catches for 130.5 yards to an entire team's worth of wideouts per week. Just three of the last 42 catches have scored.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Emmanuel Sanders, DEN CIN 006600000 ***
Sanders put on a clinic in Week 10 and erased any lingering questions about his health. The Bengals, though, provide a stiff test for the veteran. Only three of the last 42 catches over four games have scored. The matchup ranks 21st and 23rd for catches and yardage, respectively, allowed per game.
  Opp RuYDRuTDRecReYDReTDPaYDPaTDInt ConFac
WR Bennie Fowler III, DEN CIN 002300000 ***
Fowler is too erratic to trust in fantasy and also has a tough matchup.
  Opp fgaFGMxpaXPM ConFac
K Brandon McManus, DEN CIN 4411 ***
Cincy has given up averages of 3.25 field goals and 2.25 extra points attempted. All kicks but one FGA have been good. No team is even close in the field goals allowed column. This is the best matchup in fantasy.

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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