Game Predictions & Player Projections - IND vs PIT

Game Predictions & Player Projections - IND vs PIT


Game Predictions & Player Projections - IND vs PIT


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Prediction: IND 31, PIT 20 (Line: IND by 3)

Update: Trent Richardson didn’t practice all week. Officially he’s questionable, but no practice time means at best he’ll be limited this week so some of his numbers have been shifted to Ahmad Bradshaw. Reggie Wayne is also out for the Colts, but you knew that already.

The 5-2 Colts are on a five game winning streak and come off their shutout of the Bengals. The 4-3 Steelers used a three minute spree to outscore the Texans last week. But the Steelers have struggled lately and would have been in trouble last week without a couple of fumbles by the visiting Texans. These Colts are good and more than just Andrew Luck good.

Indianapolis Colts

1 @DEN 24-31 10 BYE —–
2 PHI 27-30 11 NE  —–
3 @JAC 44-17 12 JAC —–
4 TEN 41-17 13 WAS —–
5 BAL 20-13 14 @CLE —–
6 @HOU 33-28 15 HOU —–
7 CIN 27-0 16 @DAL —–
8 @PIT —– 17 @TEN —–
9 @NYG —–  
News | Statistics | Roster
IND @ PIT Rush Catch Pass
QB Andrew Luck 310,3
RB Ahmad Bradshaw 60,1 4-40,1
WR T.Y. Hilton 9-90
WR Donte Moncrief 4-50
TE Dwayne Allen 3-50,1
PK Adam Vinatieri 1 FG 4 XP

The Colts are a definite contender in the AFC and shutting out the Bengals – albeit without some of their players – sends a strong message that both sides of the ball are coming together including a rushing attack that looks improved. Even better for the Colts are two non-divisional games on the road and then a bye in week ten to get healthy for the stretch run. The problem for fantasy fans is how early the Colts take their division and if they need to play out the final game or two.

QUARTERBACK : Andrew Luck continues to be the machine of 2014. He’s thrown for over 300 yards in all but one game and scored multiple touchdowns in every one. He even had two rushing scores in addition to the 19 passing scores from seven weeks of playing. There’s a new top dog in the NFL and he has a neck beard.

RUNNING BACK : Trent Richardson injured his hamstring last week but for the first time this year he ran with speed and power. He gained 77 yards on just 14 carries against the Bengals defense and added 41 yards on four catches. He had been stuck in sub-50 yard games previously and his play was promising at the least. Richardson claims the hamstring strain was minor and he was held out of the already decided game last Sunday. I will assume that is the case and update later if needed.

Ahmad Bradshaw scored his first rushing touchdown in the win over the Bengals and also notched his six receiving score of the year. He still falls short of 100 total yards each week but he gets plenty close and scored in all but two games.

WIDE RECEIVER : Reggie Wayne is expected to miss one to two weeks with a elbow injury he sustained in the win over the Bengals. He has not been formally called out though and while I will not project for him this week, I will update later if warranted.

T.Y. Hilton followed up his 223 yard, one touchdown effort with seven catches for 107 yards last week. That makes it four straight weeks of 90+ yards though he has just the one touchdown. Donte Moncrief is getting more playing time now and some at the expense of Hakeem Nicks who has been nearly invisible for the past month and had no catches last Sunday. After Wayne and Hilton, Luck looks to tight ends and running backs.

TIGHT END : Coby Fleener scored three times this year but his yardage tends to be lower and Dwayne Allen is the primary receiving tight end with five touchdowns on the season and over 40 yards every week. There was only one week all year where a Colts tight end did not score.

MATCH TO THE DEFENSE: The Steelers rank highly against quarterbacks and have allowed just 10 passing scores over seven games played. But they have not played an above average quarterback all year. CLE, BAL, CAR, TB, JAC, CLE and HOU – no wonder they rank well. No reason to worry about Luck’s streak of 300 + 2 TD. The rushing effort could be better than expected as well since the Colts are running better and present a far better offense than they have yet seen. Luck, Bradshaw, Hilton and Allen are reasonable starts this week and Richardson as well if he ends up healthy.

Gaining Fantasy Points IND 1 4 5 3 3 7
Preventing Fantasy Points PIT 3 14 10 24 30 11

Pittsburgh Steelers

1 CLE 30-27 10 @NYJ —–
2 @BAL 6-26 11 @TEN —–
3 @CAR 37-19 12 BYE —–
4 TB 24-27 13 NO —–
5 @JAC 17-9 14 @CIN —–
6 @CLE 10-31 15 @ATL —–
7 HOU 30-23 16 KC —–
8 IND —– 17 CIN —–
9 BAL —–  
News | Statistics | Roster
PIT vs IND Rush Catch Pass
QB Ben Roethlisberger 240,1
RB Le’Veon Bell 80,1 6-50
WR Antonio Brown 5-80,1
WR Martavis Bryant 3-50
TE Heath Miller 3-40
PK Shaun Suisham 2 FG 2 XP

That three minute burst of 24 points against the Texans saved the game and prevented a 3-4 record that would have placed the Steelers two games behind the Ravens. These next two games are going to be tough – the Ravens visit in week nine and already blew the Steelers out back in week two. The Steelers cannot afford to look past this week or any by this point. The main problem ongoing is that there won’t be three minute explosions of 24 points and these Steelers are struggling outside of the rushing game and throwing to one player.

QUARTERBACK : Ben Roethlisberger throws a score in almost every game but only totals ten touchdowns after seven games and as usual, he’s been sacked 20 times this year. He also has not faced a really good defense since both the Ravens and Panthers held him to marginal stats in both games.

RUNNING BACK : Le’Veon Bell is consistent with over 100 total yards every week and that comes after LeGarrette Blount wastes about eight runs. Bell only scored once as runner and that was back in the season opener. He’s consistent with the yardage though and comes off a season best eight receptions for 88 yards and one score in the win over the Texans. Bell may be light on scoring but he’s one of the top fantasy backs with his yardage, receptions and consistency.

WIDE RECEIVER : Antonio Brown continues his amazing season where the worst he produced was 84 yards. He averages 103 yards per game and scored five times though none in the last three games. He’s a lock for a dozen targets and dominates what happens with the wideouts. Markus Wheaton has fallen from favor and failed to record a catch hast week. He is being replaced by the rookie Martavis Bryant (2-40, TD) who scored in his first playing time of the year. The passing game is far too one-dimensional to benefit anyone other than every fantasy owner looking at Brown on his roster.

TIGHT END : No fantasy value even when they play a team weak against tight ends. Heath Miller is just a blocker.

MATCH TO THE DEFENSE: The Colts sport one of the top secondaries in the NFL
and have yet to allow a 100 yard game to any receiver. Roethlisberger should manage a touchdown here but two would be a major success. No doubt Bell will see heavy use since the biggest weakness of the Colts is stopping the run and they regularly allow a rushing score. Consider Bell a strong start this week especially if they continue to use him as a receiver. Brown is a must start anyway but is less likely to have a big game this week.

Gaining Fantasy Points PIT 24 7 7 20 8 18
Preventing Fantasy Points IND 2 15 1 23 5 17

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