Game Predictions & Player Projections - BAL vs HOU

Game Predictions & Player Projections - BAL vs HOU


Game Predictions & Player Projections - BAL vs HOU

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Prediction: BAL 31, HOU 17 (Line: BAL by 6)

UPDATE: Garrett Graham is out this week because of his ankle. DeAndre Hopkins has not practiced and is a game time decision. I removed him from the projections and added in Damaris Johnson who would take his place.

The 9-5 Ravens are still in playoff contention and are 4-3 in road games. The 7-7 Texans are only 3-3 at home and just lost several quarterbacks.

Baltimore Ravens

1 CIN 16-23 10 TEN 21-7
2 PIT 26-6 11 BYE —–
3 @CLE 23-21 12 @NO 34-27
4 CAR 38-10 13 SD 33-34
5 @IND 13-20 14 @MIA 28-13
6 @TB 48-17 15 JAC 20-12
7 ATL 29-7 16 @HOU —–
8 @CIN 24-27 17 CLE —–
9 @PIT 23-43  
News | Statistics | Roster
BAL @ HOU Rush Catch Pass
QB Joe Flacco 240,2
RB Justin Forsett 90,1 2-20
RB Trent Richardson 30
RB Terrance West 30
WR Steve Smith 6-80,1
WR Mike Wallace 5-50,1
PK Justin Tucker 1 FG 4 XP

Pregame Notes: The Ravens remain knotted with the Steelers and the Bengals (half game ahead) and will need help to get the division or even a wildcard. Losing by a point in San Diego derailed what could have been a division lead but the Bengals have already swept the Ravens and they traded wins with the Steelers. But the Bengals play the Broncos this week so this will all go down to the wire.

QUARTERBACK : Joe Flacco started the year out with 14 scores in the first seven games but has since cooled and only managed one or two touchdowns per week with only average yardage. The Ravens rely more on rushing but that has meant better production for Flacco in road games since road opponents are tougher against the run.

RUNNING BACK : The Ravens placed Lorenzo Taliaferro on injured reserve because of a sprained foot and that leaves Justin Forsett and Bernard Pierce to field all the work. Pierce is just a relief back who has not scored or remotely mattered since week seven. Forsett has been uneven in his production but mostly good with five touchdowns in the last five weeks and topping 100 yards in three of those matchups. Overall, Forsett’s production has tended to be a bit less when he leaves Baltimore.

WIDE RECEIVER : The Ravens are incorporating four and five wideouts into the mix lately but Steve Smith and Torrey Smith remain the only two with any consistency or fantasy merit. Steve Smith had a strong start to the year and then cooled around midseason. He’s since scored and ran for 70+ yards in the last two road games. Torrey Smith had a knee sprain that kept him out in week 14 and though he returned last week, he was held to only two catches for 16 yards. Torrey had already scored eight times through week 13 and has been a bigger part of the passing equation than Steve for the second half of the year. Kamar Aiken and Marlon Brown show up occasionally but both run the risk of a zero catch game.

TIGHT END : Owen Daniels comes off a season best 62 yards on four catches and one score versus the Jaguars but he’s been under 30 yards and scoreless over the previous month.

MATCH TO THE DEFENSE: The Texans always allow a passing touchdown or two along with healthy yardage though they are better at home. Flacco should end up with the two scores and healthy yardage that should go almost entirely to the wide receivers. Even at home, the Texans gave up nine touchdowns to the position for the last five visitors. Forsett will likely find the running tougher here but he has a good chance for a rushing score and if the quarterback problems with the Texans go really bad, there could end up with plenty for Forsett to do.

Gaining Fantasy Points BAL 16 4 13 15 7 11
Preventing Fantasy Points HOU 20 14 30 10 5 7

Houston Texans

1 WAS 17-6 10 BYE —–
2 @OAK 30-14 11 @CLE 23-7
3 @NYG 17-30 12 CIN 13-22
4 BUF 23-17 13 TEN 45-21
5 @DAL 17-20 14 @JAC 27-13
6 IND 28-33 15 @IND 10-17
7 @PIT 23-30 16 BAL —–
8 @TEN 30-16 17 JAC —–
9 PHI 21-31  
News | Statistics | Roster
vs Rush Catch Pass
RB Lamar Miller 70,1 1-10
WR DeAndre Hopkins
WR Cecil Shorts 6-80
PK Nick Novak 2 FG 1 XP

Pregame Notes: The Texans wind down with two home games and even if they lose to the Ravens a win over the Jaguars would leave a .500 season. That’s a nice change from the 2-14 debacle of 2013. The Tom Savage era only lasted for 10 passes though and the Texans finish the year making do with some dumpster selections. The problem this week is that the Ravens are weak against the pass that will be a challenge for the Texans and yet are the best at stopping the run – which is about all they have left.

QUARTERBACK : Ryan Fitzpatrick broke his tibia and is gone for the year and Tom Savage is out with a bad knee. That means the Texans will be using either Thad Lewis or Case Keenum and likely Keenum from his experience. That puts a new and unknown slant on the offense. I will assume Keenum but this is a situation to avoid.

RUNNING BACK : There is no doubt that the Texans will run Arian Foster as much as they can this week and preferably on every play. Foster is finishing yet another great season and already scored 12 times and topped 100 rushing yards on seven different occasions. His role as a receiver increased as well and he typically adds 20 yards or more from receptions. Alfred Blue is a capable #2 but won’t get much involved unless Foster is hurt.

WIDE RECEIVER : Andre Johnson missed last week because of his concussion but there is guarded optimism that he’ll clear protocol and be back. I will assume he plays and update as warranted but the entire passing offense is a big question mark with the change in quarterback. Both wideouts have been less effective in recent weeks and combined for only three scores since week 11. Johnson has yet to top 100 yards and while DeAndre Hopkins went nuts on the Titans, he’s been moderate or worse in the other four most recent games with no scores as well.

TIGHT END : No fantasy value.

MATCH TO THE DEFENSE: Foster faces the #1 rush defense on the week that the defense may not care about the pass anyway. The Ravens have never allowed any runner to gain more than 68 yards and surrendered only four rushing scores to running backs this year. The weakness has been against wide receivers who have rolled up 15 touchdowns and eight receivers turned in 80+ yards on them. But the passing here was nothing special before working their way back to starting Case Keenum. Foster will be used as much as possible and the Ravens know that. You have to start him from his potential but this is a bad situation that just got worse.

Gaining Fantasy Points HOU 24 7 22 31 12 3
Preventing Fantasy Points BAL 21 1 32 13 14 1

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