Week 9 Fantasy Football Projections: Forecasting Top Scorers

Patrick ClarkeCorrespondent INovember 4, 2012

PITTSBURGH, PA - OCTOBER 28:  Robert Griffin III #10 of the Washington Redskins drops back to pass against the Pittsburgh Steelers during the game on October 28, 2012 at Heinz Field in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.  (Photo by Justin K. Aller/Getty Images)
Justin K. Aller/Getty Images

Is this the week Peyton Manning finally throws fewer than three touchdowns? Or the week Arian Foster's red carpet to the end zone gets stomped on? 

No one knows for sure what Week 9 has in store. But by breaking down the season's top fantasy producers and their matchups this first weekend of November, we can make some accurate projections as to how they'll fare on game day.

Here we forecast Week 9's top fantasy scorers. 

Arian Foster, Houston Texans, RB

Arian Foster has been a touchdown-scoring machine this season. He has nine rushing touchdowns through seven games, six of which scores have come in his last four outings. Not only is Foster finding the end zone consistently, but he's nearly averaging 100 yards per week, too. 

Look for Foster to thrive in Week 9 when the Texans host the Buffalo Bills at Reliant Stadium. No team in the NFL has surrendered more rushing yards or touchdowns in 2012 than the Bills. Buffalo is allowing 177 yards on the ground per week and has given up 13 rushing scores in seven games. 

Sunday's matchup will surely be a late Halloween nightmare for Bills fans and an early Christmas present for Foster owners. 

Projection: 25 carries, 130 yards, two touchdowns

Peyton Manning, Denver Broncos, QB

Peyton Manning is the safest fantasy bet in the NFL right now. The veteran passer has not thrown for fewer than three touchdowns in a game since Week 3 versus Houston. He hasn't passed for fewer than 300 yards in a game since Week 2 against Atlanta. 

Denver is just seven games into the regular season, but Manning already boasts more than 2,100 yards and 17 touchdowns through the air. He also has just five turnovers nearly halfway through the year.

Expect another huge performance from Manning on the road this Sunday at Cincinnati. The Bengals defense is giving up 7.8 yards per pass attempt this season, which is eighth worst in the NFL coming into Week 9.

Projection: 25-for-30, 310 yards, three touchdowns

Robert Griffin III, Washington Redskins, QB

RG3 and the 'Skins will be back in D.C. in Week 9 to host the reeling Carolina Panthers, who are giving up tons of yards on the ground (114.4 per game) and through the air (229.4 per game).

Given Griffin's ability to beat defenses in a variety of ways, fantasy owners should expect that he'll be one of the weekend's top producers. He has 14 total touchdowns through eight games but exploded for 320 total yards and three touchdowns in his most recent home game, against the Minnesota Vikings. 

Expect RG3 to take full advantage of a demoralized Panthers defense on Sunday afternoon, throwing and rushing his way into the end zone and to the top of the fantasy scoreboard.

Projection: 18-for-25, 200 yards, two touchdowns; nine rushes, 75 yards, one touchdown

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