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Fantasy Forecast: Week 14


Welcome to week fourteen of the NFL Regular Season. Before each game RavensGab will take a look at the various Ravens players poised to make a significant fantasy impact, and provide the strengths and weaknesses associated with each based on current trends and matchups.

Detroit Lions at Baltimore Ravens
December 13, 2009, 1:00 pm Baltimore, MD
Weather Forecast: Cold/Wintry Mix

Joe Flacco, QB (Week 13: 137 yds, 1 TD, 3 INT)

Wow. Just wow. Congratulations Mr. Flacco, you have officially set the mark for your worst game of the season statistically. With a quarterback rating of 27.5 something is clearly amiss for the young quarterback. His game against the Packers is assuredly one he would like to forget, and quickly.

Against the Lions however, Joe has got to be all smiles. Against so called lesser opponents Joe has been absolutely dominant. When playing teams with a losing record Joe’s QB rating sits somewhere around 101. Not to shabby. Fantasy wise you have to like Flacco’s odds of putting up 20+ points. The only thing that would be a cause for concern is the fact that if the Ravens get up early, expect to see a lot of Ray Rice and maybe even a good amount of Troy Smith.

Prediction: 300 yds, 2 TD, 0 INT

Ray Rice, RB (Week 13: 54 yds Rush, 17 yds Rec, 0 TD)

Last week I said “Week in and week out Ray Rice has been the heart and soul of this offense.” Last week I was shown that there is often an exception which disproves the rule. Against the Packers Ray Rice was simply ineffective. Every player is due for a dud every now and then, but for the Ravens, Ray’s dud could not have come at a worse moment.

This week the Ravens are playing the lions, and if you think that this might be a good thing for Rice, I invite you to see my analysis of Flacco, Joe. If you have Rice you’re starting him. Although the three headed monster has been rearing its ugly (but formidable) head once again, it’s the Lions and they’re just awful. If the Ravens get up early in the game expect a lot of touches for young Mr. Rice.

Prediction: 110 yds Rush, 50 yds Rec, 1 TD

Willis McGahee, RB (Week 13: -4 yds Rush, 0 yds Rec, 1 TD)

Against the Packers, the Ravens goal line back pounded the rock into the end zone and continually made magic happen for this struggling offensive unit. He did his best with what he had. No one could really ask for more given what McGahee is working with.

If you have McGahee you’re not going to be playing him, but if you’re in a pinch due to injuries, I think you can count on him for at least one touchdown and an increase in yardage. The ravens are home this week and can’t afford another loss. Cam will play it safe and run the ball all he can until being forced to throw.

Prediction: 30 yds Rush, 15 yds Rec, 1 TD

Le’Ron McClain, FB/RB (Week 13: 0 yds Rush, 0 yds Rec, 0 TD)

Against the Pack, Le’Ron returned to his MIA status. He wasn’t given a single hand off in this game and was targeted only once.

Once again, I don’t expect massive numbers out of the fullback, especially since he’s hurt, but I think he’ll play ok. Definitely not a starter though.

Prediction: 10 yds Rush, 5 Yds Rec, 0 TD)

Todd Heap, TE (Week 13: 52 yds, 0 TD)

Cam did a good job of using Heap in the flat as a safety check down valve for Flacco. Heap is playing admirably given his injuries and the game plan, but it is more apparent than ever that Heap is in the twilight of his career.

Against the Browns, I’d expect a decent day out of Heap, but there are assuredly better options free agent wise who are tipped to put up better numbers. Like I’ve said before, I expect a heavy run package for the Ravens tomorrow.

Prediction: 35 yds, 1 TD

Derrick Mason, WR (Week 13: 13 yds, 0 TD)

Mason simply couldn’t get separation from Charles Woodson. The only play he did, he was wide open and was whistled for one of the worst Offensive Pass Interference calls I’ve ever seen. Mason just had no answer for the Pack.

Against the Lions I’d expect good numbers out of Mason. I mean come on, the lions are flat out not that good a football team.

Prediction: 85 yds, 1 TD

Mark Clayton, WR (Week 13: 16 yds, 0 TD)

If I ever open an amusement park, I’m going to build a ride called the Mark Clayton super-coaster. It’s going to be nothing but a series of ups and downs. I guarantee I’ll have all the kids puking. Clayton was pedestrian at best against the Pack.
This week I wouldn’t expect to much from Clayton. Its going to be snowing/sleeting/raining, and nothing about that equates to big numbers from Baltimore wide receivers not named Derrick Mason.

If Mason is covered by Woodson, Clayton will simply have to find a way to get open for the Ravens to have a chance at winning. If he brings the pain like he did against Pittsburgh, the Pack could be in for a very long evening. Start him with caution as a handcuff against Derrick Mason.

Prediction: 60 yrds, 0 TD

Kelley Washington, WR (Week 13: 39 yds, 1 TD)

Kelley Washington was the lone bright spot for the Ravens Wide Receiver corp. He didn’t make a ton of plays but he clearly made the plays when he needed too. His lone touchdown kept Baltimore in this game.

Don’t start him against the Lions either, but don’t be surprised if he has a Clayton-esq performance, coming in out of left field.

Prediction: 45 yrds, 1 TD

Billy Cundiff, K (Week 12: 2 PAT, 0/0 FG (00 yds)

Billy Cundiff is a solid option at kicker, especially this week against the Lions. I am inclined to expect another relatively low scoring game full of field goals which could translate to a big night for Cundiff (due to poor weather and the Ravens’ struggle in the red zone).

Prediction: 3 PATs, 4 FG (30/45/20/15 yds)

Defense (Week 12: 2 INT, 1 FF, 1 Sack, 0 TD)

They just played awful. No defense is going to have a stellar night with that many pass interference calls. Most were bogus; some were deserved. Either way this defense is a shell of its former self. Even against the Lions I’d start with caution. I mean after all, the Ravens have a terrible track record against good wide receivers, and guess what? Calvin Johnson is a good wide receiver.

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