Fantasy information, fantasy Fantasy news, Fantasy articles, Fantasy rankings           Fantasy Football Info For Serious Players

Fantasy Football Information | Fantasy Football Articles | Fantasy Football News
Fantasy Football Links | Fantasy Football Updates | Fantasy Football Rankings
 Fantasy Football Forums | Fantasy Football Projections


Forums
News
Login / Signup  
  Home  
•   Articles  
Forecast
•   Humor  
•   Links  
•   Players  
•   Stats  
•   Tools  
•   Updates  
 
  Passing Matchups  

Week 19 Rushing Matchups

[CAR] [CHI] [DEN] [IND] [NE] [PIT] [SEA] [WAS]


PLEASE NOTE: This does NOT replace the Cheatsheet ranking. The Cheatsheet rankings are the final say on where we see a player for that week. The Matchup Breakdowns are simply one more tool in the box when it comes to helping choose your lineup.

Also note, just because a player has a "bad" matchup, it does NOT mean he's not a starter in your league. If Peyton Manning is playing the toughest pass defense in the league, that just means he's got a tough matchup that week. He's also your starter unless you're loaded at QB. In the same way, if the worst QB on your roster has a "great" matchup that week, it doesn't necessarily mean he's your starter. It means we think he'll fare better than normal that week.

Bottom line is that the cheatsheets are the final say.


Denver Broncos Rushing Offense vs New England Patriots Rushing Defense (Neutral Matchup)

Denver racked up 34/178/2 rushing the last time these teams met at Mile High Stadium (week 6, 10/16/05) - New England couldn't find an answer for either Tatum Bell (13/114/1 rushing with 3/20/0 receiving) or Mike Anderson (15/57/1 rushing during week 6). No surprise here, Denver won the game 28-20 despite a late New England charge. Anderson sat out the season finale to rest his sore ankle, but is definitely expected back for this matchup.

This week, both Bell (173/921/8 rushing with 18/104/0 receiving during regular season) and Anderson (239/1014/12 rushing with 18/212/1 receiving last year) will have benefitted from a bye week of rest, and they have the home-field crowd at their back. Both are feared weapons of the Broncos - expect to see both players getting touches amounting to the mid-teens against the Patriots this week - whichever guy busts a big run (more likely to be Bell, but Anderson has his moments, too) will be the most productive player from a fantasy viewpoint.

Although New England finished the season ranked #26 in total yards allowed per game (330.2), they were #8 vs. opposing rushers averaging 98.8 yards allowed per game on the ground. When Tedy Bruschi returned to the lineup, their defensive front was vastly improved - however, Bruschi was forced to miss the wild-card round due to a calf injury that left him limping during pre-game warmups last week. If he can't play, the Patriots' defensive front will suffer. Jacksonville could only muster 17/87/0 last week (but they had a rusty QB under center, allowing New England to focus on Taylor and Jones for much of the game) - the Patriots averaged 72.6 rushing yards allowed per game during the final 3 weeks of the regular season. They are tough in this phase of the game.

Denver crushed the Patriots the first time around the block, but don't expect New England to lie down again. Right now, we call this a neutral matchup with neither team owning a big edge. If Bruschi is forced to the sidelines again this week, then we think the edge flows to Anderson, Bell and company. Keep an eye on Bruschi's injury status/practice participation this week.

Weather: The forecast for Mile High Stadium calls for a high of 59F with a low of 39F and a 0% chance for precipitation. The game will begin near sunset, local time (8:30 PM ET, 6:30 PM MT), so look for the temperatures to be nearer to the low end of the scale throughout the game. The wind can be a big factor at this time of year in Denver, although the conditions for this game don't appear to be worrisome at mid-week (the forecast calls for abundant sunshine all day on Saturday). The weather should be pleasant for this game, it appears.

DEN Injuries: TE Jeb Putzier (Probable), TE Stephen Alexander (Probable)
NE Injuries: DL Jarvis Green (Probable), LB Matt Chatham (Probable), DB Artrell Hawkins (Probable)


Pittsburgh Steelers Rushing Offense at Indianapolis Colts Rushing Defense (Neutral Matchup)

The Colts did a great job of containing Pittsburgh's backs the last time these teams danced (on Monday Night Football, November 28th) - 25/86/0 was the Steeler's totals, led by Willie Parker (12/43/0 rushing with 4/23/0 receiving).

Parker and Bettis had been on a tear during the closing weeks of the regular season (57/346/1 rushing and 3/33/0 receiving for Parker during the final 3 weeks; 26/81/4 rushing for Bettis). They continued that trend during the wild card round, with 16/38/0 rushing and 3/41/1 receiving for Parker, with 10/52/1 rushing for Bettis vs. Cincinnati. The two form one of the most potent tandems amongst the playoff contenders - Parker has the speed to magnify one mistake into a long TD run every time he touches the ball, while Bettis is almost unstoppable at the goal-line.

The Colts aren't pushovers in this phase of the game, ranking 16th in the NFL allowing an average of 110.1 rushing yards per game, but surrendering only 9 rushing scores during the season. They averaged 169.3 rushing yards allowed per game during the final 3 weeks of the season, but during that span, Indianapolis was fielding their 2nd- and 3rd-teamers for most of the contest. The rest that they gave to key guys like LB Cato June, DL's Robert Mathis, Montae Reagor, Corey Simon and Dwight Freeney will enliven their front 7 on Sunday.

The Steelers are on a roll, but the Colts have home field advantage and the psychological advantage of containing Pittsburgh during the first meeting between the teams - the Colts will also be more rested for this contest. On balance, this looks like an even contest between a powerful tandem and a respectable but not elite defensive front.

Weather: This game will be played in the RCA Dome - weather conditions won't be an issue for either team indoors.

PIT Injuries: QB Ben Roethlisberger (Probable), RB Jerome Bettis (Probable), WR Quincy Morgan (Out)
IND Injuries: DL Robert Mathis (Probable), DL Montae Reagor (Probable), DL Corey Simon (Probable), DL Josh Thomas (Probable), DL Dwight Freeney (Probable), LB Cato June (Probable), DB Bob Sanders (Probable), DB Dexter Reid (Probable)


Carolina Panthers Rushing Offense at Chicago Bears Rushing Defense (Tough Matchup)

DeShaun Foster (still sharing time with Stephen Davis during week 11) was effective vs. Chicago's front 7 the last time around the block, with 9/41/0 rushing (a 4.6 yards-per-carry average) and 3/20/0 receiving. Nick Goings mustered 1/0/0 rushing and was a non-factor in the passing game.

Since week 11, Foster has ascended to the featured-back role on the Panthers' squad (Davis is on IR), with Goings providing an important change-of-pace look to the backfield. Last week, Foster strung together 2 100+ rushing efforts in a row, with 27/151/0 rushing and 1/4/0 receiving vs. the undermanned Giants' defense (he had 18/165/1 rushing during the season finale vs. Atlanta), while Goings added 12/63/0 rushing and 1/10/0 receiving. Carolina has posted 45/223/1 and 38/229/2 rushing during their most recent 2 games - one against a division rival, and the other during the wild card round of the playoffs. They are as hot a unit as you will find coming into this week's games.

Chicago sports the league's #2 ranked defense, allowing an average of 281.8 total yards per game - they are #11 vs. opposing rushers, though, giving up an average of 102.3 yards per contest, with 9 rushing scores handed over during the regular season. They are solid, but not elite in this phase of the game - the Bears averaged 109.3 rushing yards allowed per game during the final 3 weeks of the regular season.

Chicago's home field advantage is significant, but Carolina is hot and the Bears are merely above average in this phase of the game - This will still be a tough challenge for the Panthers.

Weather: The forecast for Chicago's Soldier Field calls for a high of 40F and a low of 35F with a 20% chance for precipitation. This game is to start at 4:30 PM ET (3:30 PM CT) - temperatures should be mild for most of the contest, if a bit brisk. Wind can often be an issue in this venue at this time of the year - but the mild forecast of "partly cloudy weather" doesn't bode for a lot of wind during this particular game. If the forecast holds up, weather conditions won't be a huge deal for either squad.

CAR Injuries: RB Brad Hoover (Questionable), RB DeShaun Foster (Questionable), WR Ricky Proehl (Probable)
CHI Injuries: none


Chicago Bears Rushing Offense vs Carolina Panthers Rushing Defense (Tough Matchup)

The Bears piled up yards, but not scores, in this phase of the game the last time Chicago faced off against Carolina - November 20th, during week 11, with 31/122/0 rushing as a team, led by Thomas Jones' 25/87/0 on the ground.

During the closing weeks of the regular season, Jones compiled 64/258/2 rushing and 2/4/0 receiving to rank 16th among fantasy RBs in points per game. His season amounted to 314/1335/9 rushing and 26/143/0 receiving - he's been very effective, considering how little threat there was in the passing game during the bulk of 2005. Jones' performance was even better than the raw numbers would indicate (and those numbers are very solid).

Carolina fields one of the premier defenses in the NFL - just ask Tiki Barber, who could only muster 13/41/0 rushing and 3/28/0 receiving last week. Carolina gave up an average of 91.6 rushing yards per game this past season (4th in the NFL) and only 9 TDs on the ground all year long. Dallas' big game against Carolina in week 16 skews their final 3 week average upwards (to 111.3 rushing yards allowed per game during weeks 15-17), but most of the time the Panthers are solid vs. opposing running backs.

The Panthers will make things tough on Jones and company this week.

Weather: The forecast for Chicago's Soldier Field calls for a high of 40F and a low of 35F with a 20% chance for precipitation. This game is to start at 4:30 PM ET (3:30 PM CT) - temperatures should be mild for most of the contest, if a bit brisk. Wind can often be an issue in this venue at this time of the year - but the mild forecast of "partly cloudy weather" doesn't bode for a lot of wind during this particular game. If the forecast holds up, weather conditions won't be a huge deal for either squad.

CHI Injuries: RB Bryan Johnson (Questionable)
CAR Injuries: LB Brandon Short (Questionable)


Indianapolis Colts Rushing Offense vs Pittsburgh Steelers Rushing Defense (Tough Matchup)

Indianapolis stomped Pittsburgh 26-7 back in week 12 (at the RCA Dome, by the way) - Edgerrin James crammed 29/124/0 down Pittsburgh's collective throat on the ground. The Colts put up 32/127/0 rushing that day, for a solid 4.0 yards-per-carry average.

Let us put it this way - Edgerrin James racked up 100+ total yards of offense every week he played from week 1 - week 14. He was held to 13/25/1 rushing and 2/20/0 receiving during the loss to San Diego, and then made cameo appearances during the season's closing weeks. We're expecting the guy who had 13 straight 100+ yard performances to show up for the playoffs (James amassed 360/1506/13 rushing and 44/337/1 receiving over 15 games this year, to rank 5th among all fantasy RBs in points per game).

Pittsburgh brings a dominant rush D into the RCA Dome, ranking 3rd vs. opposing rushers this year allowing an average of 85.5 rushing yards per game (with 10 TDs given up in this phase over 16 games). Last week, Cincinnati managed 20/84/1 vs. Pittsburgh: they gave up an average of 71.3 rushing yards per game during the final 3 weeks of the regular season, and only 3 scores (rushing and receiving). The Steelers are tough as nails vs. opposing running backs.

James is an elite back, but the Steelers are elite, too. They will make running room scarce on Sunday - this is a tougher-than-usual matchup for James and company.

Weather: This game will be played in the RCA Dome - weather conditions won't be an issue for either team indoors.

IND Injuries: QB Jim Sorgi (Probable), WR Brandon Stokley (Probable), WR Marvin Harrison (Probable), TE Bryan Fletcher (Probable)
PIT Injuries: DL Kimo von Oelhoffen (Probable), DL Travis Kirschke (Probable), LB Joey Porter (Probable), LB Clark Haggans (Probable), LB James Harrison (Doubtful)


New England Patriots Rushing Offense at Denver Broncos Rushing Defense (Tough Matchup)

The last time these teams clashed, neither Corey Dillon or Kevin Faulk, the current starting/change-of-pace tandem, was in action. The Patriots managed 19/89/1 on the ground that day (October 16), mostly due to Patrick Pass (10/64/1 rushing).

Dillon was sluggish last week, with 17/40/0 rushing and 1/12/0 receiving, while Faulk added 6/51/0 rushing and 4/45/0 receiving - he was the better fantsay option last week. As we noted last week, Jacksonville is hard-nosed at the goal-line, which was the one saving grace for Dillon's fantasy owners this year (he had 209/733/12 rushing and 22/181/1 receiving in 12 games during regular season). The Patriots averaged 3.4 yards-per-carry this past season, and Dillon averaged 3.5 per tote in-season (2.4 yards per carry last week). The Patriots just aren't opening up much in the way of holes for their aging, featured ball-carrier - and he has lost the explosiveness to open up opportunities on his own.

Denver's front 7 was very tough to run on this past season, averaging 85.2 rushing yards allowed per game (2nd in the NFL) with only 10 TDs given up over 16 contests. They stayed right on pace during the final 3 weeks of regular sesaon, holding their opposition to an average of 84.3 rushing yards per game, including limiting San Diego to 2/91/1 in the season finale, despite doing without LB Al Wilson (thumb injury). Wilson is expected to play in this game despite undergoing thumb surgery at the end of the regular season - Denver's defense is in good shape coming into this contest.

Dillon has faded badly this season, and was unimpressive last week - Faulk produced, but Denver is stout (and they have home-field advantage). We think this is a tough matchup for the Patriots' stable.

Weather: The forecast for Mile High Stadium calls for a high of 59F with a low of 39F and a 0% chance for precipitation. The game will begin near sunset, local time (8:30 PM ET, 6:30 PM MT), so look for the temperatures to be nearer to the low end of the scale throughout the game. The wind can be a big factor at this time of year in Denver, although the conditions for this game don't appear to be worrisome at mid-week (the forecast calls for abundant sunshine all day on Saturday). The weather should be pleasant for this game, it appears.

NE Injuries: QB Tom Brady (Probable), RB Heath Evans (Probable), RB Patrick Pass (Probable), RB Corey Dillon (Probable), TE Daniel Graham (Probable), TE Christian Fauria (Probable)
DEN Injuries: DL Courtney Brown (Probable), LB Al Wilson (Probable), LB Keith Burns (Probable), DB Darrent Williams (Probable)


Seattle Seahawks Rushing Offense vs Washington Redskins Rushing Defense (Tough Matchup)

Way back in week 4, these teams battled to a 17-17 tie during regulation, and witnessed Washington cashing in during the OT period with a Nick Novak field goal (he's no longer with the team now that John Hall is healthy) - it was a hard-fought contest at Fed Ex Field. This week, the Seahawks will host the Redskins at Qwest Field and they are looking for payback.

Shaun Alexander ground out 20/98/1 rushing and 1/4/0 receiving the last time he saw these guys - Alexander did his part during the game (as he has done every week this season). What can we say to add to the league's MVP's luster? The guy holds the NFL record for scoring TDs in a season by a running back, he powered an offense that averaged 4.7 yards-per-carry this season, and he posted 370/1880/27 rushing with 15/78/1 receiving to lead all fantasy RBs in points per game this year, eclipsing Larry Johnson, LaDainian Tomlinson and Tiki Barber - he's been awesome.

Washington brings the league's 9th ranked defense to the table (averaging 297.9 total yards allowed per game), while ranking #13 vs. opposing rushers (averaging 105.4 rushing yards allowed per game, with 15 rushing scores handed over to date). They held Cadillac Williams and company to 25/75/1 last week, and averaged 101.3 rushing yards allowed per game during the final 3 weeks of the regular season. Washington sports a good, but not great, defensive front.

At home, with the MVP award already under his belt, we think this looks like a tough matchup between Alexander, a stellar running back, and Washington's good-but-not-elite rush defense.

Weather: The forecast for Qwest Field calls for a high of 46F with a low of 29F and a 60% chance for precipitation. This game is slated for 4:30 PM ET (1:30 PM PT), so the temperature should be nearer to the high end of the day's range at game time. If the precipitation comes down thickly around game time, footing and ball-handling will be more difficult issues than usual for both teams.

SEA Injuries: none
WAS Injuries: DL Cornelius Griffin (Probable), DB Shawn Springs (Probable)


Washington Redskins Rushing Offense at Seattle Seahawks Rushing Defense (Bad Matchup)

Way back in week 4, these teams battled to a 17-17 tie during regulation, and witnessed Washington cashing in during the OT period with a Nick Novak field goal (he's no longer with the team now that John Hall is healthy) - it was a hard-fought contest at Fed Ex Field. This week, the Seahawks will host the Redskins at Qwest Field and they are looking for payback.

Clinton Portis wasn't fully up to speed at that point of the season (25/90/0 rushing and 2/18/0 receiving), but he wasn't shut down by Seattle, as you can see. Coming into this game, Portis is battling a nerve injury in one shoulder (which numbed his arm last week and kept him sidelined for most of the wild-card playoff game), soreness in the other shoulder, and a wrist injury to boot - he will rest during practices most of this week and is dicey to play out the game on Saturday. Last week, he broke his string of 5 straight 100+ yard rushing games to post 16/53/1 rushing and 1/-5/0 receiving. Ladell Betts chugged along for 10/25/0 rushing and 1/11/0 receiving last week in relief of Portis.

Seattle was brutal against opposing backs this season, allowing a miniscule 5 rushing scores all year long while averaging 94.4 rushing yards given up per game (5th in the NFL). Even with their backups in for most of the final 3 weeks of the season, the team averaged only 64 rushing yards allowed per game, holding Green Bay's JV squad to 33/68/1 in the season finale. It is not easy to run the ball on Seattle.

Portis is struggling to stay on the field, and Betts was less-than-impressive in relief duty last week - at Seattle, this looks like a bad matchup for the weary Redskins.

Weather: The forecast for Qwest Field calls for a high of 46F with a low of 29F and a 60% chance for precipitation. This game is slated for 4:30 PM ET (1:30 PM PT), so the temperature should be nearer to the high end of the day's range at game time. If the precipitation comes down thickly around game time, footing and ball-handling will be more difficult issues than usual for both teams.

WAS Injuries: WR James Thrash (Questionable)
SEA Injuries: DL Joe Tafoya (Questionable), LB D.D. Lewis (Questionable), DB Marcus Trufant (Questionable)




Forums |  News | Login / Signup | Contact Us