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NFC North Player Analysis
Doug Coutts,, Senior Staff Writer

Chicago Bears (vs Tampa Bay Buccaneers)

QB Jay Cutler: The soft schedule combined with more home cooking will once again result in a strong performance from the Bears quarterback. Expect a nice day from Cutler against a Tampa defense that has been hit or miss all season -- mainly miss. ( 269 yds pass with 2 TDs and 1 Int; 12 yds rush )

QB Jimmy Clausen: ( 10 yds pass )

RB Matt Forte: Another soft matchup for one of the top producing fantasy players this season. Another big week is on tap. ( 85 yds rush; 6 catches for 55 yds )

RB Ka'Deem Carey: ( 17 yds rush; 1 catch for 2 yds )

WR Brandon Marshall: Showing no signs of injury, Marshall was dominant last week. Expect that to continue this week against a soft Tampa Bay secondary. ( 7 catches for 78 yds and 1 TD )

WR Alshon Jeffery: He and Marshall will have their way this week against the Bucs. Another big day expected from the Bears passing game. ( 4 yds rush; 7 catches for 87 yds and 1 TD )

WR Marquess Wilson: Minimal action, if any. ( 2 catches for 14 yds )

WR Josh Morgan: ( 1 catch for 5 yds )

TE Martellus Bennett: He has not been as prominently used as in the past as Marshall and Jeffery are both healthy and excelling. A handful of catches expected here. ( 5 catches for 57 yds )

TE Dante Rosario: ( 1 catch for 6 yds )

PK Robbie Gould: The offense is performing a little better, but the three point opportunities have been few and far between. Seek other options if you can. ( 2 XPs, 1 FG )

Def Chicago Bears: Not a lot expected from this unit. They aren't generating many sacks and up against a team that rarely turns the ball over, the potential for fantasy points is minimal. ( 2 sacks, 1 INT, 1 Fumble )

Detroit Lions (vs New England Patriots)

QB Matthew Stafford: The Patriots secondary is much improved, but chasing the game will create plenty of opportunities for Stafford to put up a big fantasy number. Enjoy his schedule down the road too. ( 296 yds pass with 2 TDs and 1 Int; 4 yds rush )

RB Joique Bell: The Lions have not been running the ball well of late, and the Patriots are a tough team to run on. His lack of receptions in the passing game limits his fantasy potential. ( 31 yds rush; 2 catches for 22 yds )

RB Reggie Bush: Reports are that he will be back in action this week. Check as late as you can to confirm, but if healthy, he is a good option this week as his numbers in the passing game will be very strong. ( 40 yds rush; 6 catches for 48 yds )

RB Theo Riddick: The return of Bush limits the potential here, but check as late as you can to make sure that Bush will be suiting up. This week's game will be a passing affair so the absence of Bush will put Riddick into a position to catch plenty of passes. ( 4 yds rush; 2 catches for 19 yds )

RB George Winn: ( 2 yds rush; )

WR Calvin Johnson: New England has a way of shutting down their opponent's best option but when your best option is Megatron, things can change in a hurry. ( 9 catches for 99 yds and 1 TD )

WR Golden Tate: The Patriots are likely to try and concentrate on limiting Calvin Johnson, leaving Tate room to roam. A big day expected this week. ( 1 yd rush; 7 catches for 88 yds )

WR Jeremy Ross: ( 2 catches for 18 yds )

WR Corey Fuller: ( 2 catches for 17 yds )

WR Ryan Broyles: ( 1 catch for 7 yds )

TE Brandon Pettigrew: He has been a non-factor for weeks. ( 1 catch for 8 yds )

TE Eric Ebron: With Tate and Johnson drawing the defensive attention, there will be seams for Ebron to work in this week. Expect a spike in his usually low numbers. ( 5 catches for 50 yds )

TE Joseph Fauria: ( 1 catch for 17 yds )

PK Matt Prater: He has been getting consistent three point opportunities, a middle of the road option again this week. ( 2 XPs, 1 FG and 1 missed FG )

Def Detroit Lions: This unit will have their hands full with the high powered Patriots offense. Not a lot of fantasy production expected here this week. ( 1 sack, 1 INT )

Green Bay Packers (vs Minnesota Vikings)

QB Aaron Rodgers: He is at the top of his game right now. There are no indications that he is going to slow down this week. Plug in with confidence -- as usual. ( 274 yds pass with 3 TDs; 15 yds rush )

QB Matt Flynn: ( 25 yds pass; 1 yd rush )

QB Scott Tolzien: ( 1 yd pass )

RB Eddie Lacy: He is looking as good as he has all season. His strong running and involvement in the passing game make him one of this week's top options. ( 80 yds rush and 1 TD; 3 catches for 38 yds )

RB James Starks: Just spells Lacy from time to time at this point. ( 28 yds rush; 1 catch for 7 yds )

RB DuJuan Harris: ( 14 yds rush; 1 catch for 3 yds )

RB John Kuhn: ( 6 yds rush; 1 catch for 3 yds )

WR Jordy Nelson: The Packers passing game is in top form, making Nelson one of the top options at wide out. ( 7 catches for 99 yds and 1 TD )

WR Randall Cobb: Rodgers is finding plenty of action for both he and Nelson, as usual he will be a top option this week. ( 2 yds rush; 6 catches for 83 yds and 1 TD )

WR Davante Adams: He is limited to getting the scraps of Cobb and Nelson, not a huge fantasy ceiling here. ( 3 catches for 35 yds )

WR Jarrett Boykin: ( 1 catch for 13 yds )

WR Jeff Janis: ( )

TE Andrew Quarless: Despite the high flying passing attack, the tight end rarely gets a piece of the action. Limited action here, if any. ( 2 catches for 25 yds )

TE Richard Rodgers: ( 1 catch for 13 yds )

PK Mason Crosby: The Packers high flying offense has him kicking extra points and long three pointers, another high scoring week on tap. ( 3 XPs, 2 FGs )

Def Green Bay Packers: Against a rookie quarterback that will be playing catch up, this unit will be one of the top fantasy producers this week. ( 1 TD, 3 sacks, 2 INTs, 1 Fumble )

Minnesota Vikings (vs Green Bay Packers)

QB Teddy Bridgewater: There will be mistakes made in this contest, but in an effort to keep up with the Packers, Bridgewater will have to throw the ball plenty of times this week. ( 275 yds pass with 1 TD and 2 Ints; 13 yds rush )

QB Christian Ponder: ( 59 yds pass; 5 yds rush )

RB Jerick McKinnon: He gets the most carries for the Vikings, but that is not saying much. This week will see his involvement in the passing game at an all time high, pushing him up in our running back rankings. ( 61 yds rush; 6 catches for 46 yds )

RB Matt Asiata: His fantasy relevance depends solely on touchdowns, use at your own risk.

RB Ben Tate: ( 19 yds rush; 1 catch for 7 yds )

RB Joe Banyard: ( )

WR Greg Jennings: Check the injury report, but even if he plays, his productivity has not been very high. ( 4 catches for 45 yds )

WR Cordarrelle Patterson: As one of the few viable threats in the Vikings passing game, opposing defenses have been able to concentrate on him and limit his production. ( 6 yds rush; 3 catches for 35 yds )

WR Jarius Wright: After leaving last week's game, his status for this week is unknown. Even if he plays, his fantasy potential has a low ceiling. ( 1 yd rush; 2 catches for 16 yds )

WR Adam Thielen: ( 1 catch for 7 yds )

WR Charles Johnson: Last week he took advantage of injuries to Jennings and Wright, keep an eye on this up and comer. ( 6 catches for 66 yds )

TE Kyle Rudolph: He's ba-ack. And he's needed. ( 3 catches for 37 yds )

TE Chase Ford: ( 2 catches for 21 yds )

TE Rhett Ellison: ( 1 catch for 12 yds )

TE MarQueis Gray: ( 1 yd rush; 1 catch for 1 yd )

PK Blair Walsh: In an expected high scoring affair, Walsh is worth a look as the Vikings will present him with several opportunities from three point range. ( 2 XPs, 2 FGs )

Def Minnesota Vikings: The Packers offense may be the best in the business right now, not a lot expected from this unit this week. ( 2 sacks, 1 INT )

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