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Predictions & Projections
David Dorey
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Game Predictions Summary

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WEEK 9
2010
TB at ATL MIA at BAL *NYG at SEA PIT at CIN
*NO at CAR NE at CLE KC at OAK DEN, JAC
CHI at BUF *SD at HOU *IND at PHI SF, STL
*Updated *NYJ at DET *ARI at MIN *DAL at GB TEN, WAS

Prediction: IND 27, PHI 24

Update: DeSean Jackson has been cleared to play and barring an unforeseen setback from his precious concussion, he is expected to play this week and changes up almost all the projections. Austin Collie is also back to full practices and is expected to play while Anthony Gonzalez has been held out of practice. I am replacing Gonzalez with Collie.

The Colts are on a three game winning streak and are only 2-2 in road games. The Eagles come off their bye healthy for the most part and still trailing the Giants by one game. Philly is only 1-2 in home games. Both teams still have injuries of note and this will come down to the pocket passer Manning versus the scrambler Vick.

Indianapolis Colts (5-2)
Homefield: Lucas Oil Stadium
FieldTurf
  Opp Score   Opp Score
1 @HOU L 24-34 10 CIN --
2 NYG W 38-14 11 @NE --
3 @DEN W 27-13 12 SD --
4 @JAC L 28-31 13 DAL --
5 KC W 19-9 14 @TEN --
6 @WAS W 27-24 15 JAC --
7 Bye - 16 @OAK --
8 HOU W 30-17 17 TEN --
9 @PHI -- - - -
Colts Report | Statistics | Roster
INDIANAPOLIS at PHI Rush Catch Pass
QB Peyton Manning - - 310,3
RB Mike Hart 50 - -
RB Donald Brown 30 10 -
TE Jacob Tamme - 50,1 -
WR Reggie Wayne - 90,1 -
WR Austin Collie - 60 -
WR Anthony Gonzalez - 60 -
WR Pierre Garcon - 70,1 -
PK Adam Vinatieri 2 FG 3 XP -
Pregame Notes: The Colts used the Monday night game to payback the Texans for the opening loss and have finally scratched their way to a half game lead in the AFC South. The loss of Dallas Clark and absence of Joseph Addai are being compensated for at least to a sufficient level and even Anthony Gonzalez is back though Austin Collie is out. The Colts are back to getting it done no matter what it takes and the only losses on the season have been to well-known divisional foes in road games.

QUARTERBACK: Peyton Manning has continued to shine with two or more scores in every game but the Chiefs matchup and his 13 scores on the season go against only two interceptions. True to his career, no matter what receivers play they always get better with Peyton Manning throwing the ball and only that could explain how unknown Jacob Tamme could look just like Dallas Clark.

The Eagles secondary is average at best and have allowed multiple touchdowns in five different games including twice at home. Considering that Alex Smith and Shaun Hill both racked up 300+ yards, expect a nice game here by Manning.

RUNNING BACKS: Mike Hart had a great showing against the Texans when he gained 84 yards on 12 carries but he rolled his ankle and was slated to get an MRI that was not made public by this writing. I will assume that a limited Hart can play this week and adjust as more is known.

Donald Brown continues to play more like a wasted draft pick. While Hart was slashing through the Texans defense, Brown only gained 16 yards on nine carries. Brown will continue to play but Hart will take a bigger share as his health permits.

Joseph Addai remains "week to week" with a shoulder injury which is just another way to say "not this week."

The Eagles have been good against the run especially at home where no opponent has gained more than 70 rushing yards and just two have scored. Given the banged nature of the backfield, lower expectations this week.

WIDE RECEIVERS: Anthony Gonzalez returned last week and ended with a very respectable 55 yards on four carries while he was shrugging off the rust from seven weeks of healing. He was reported to have been "banged up" after the game but showed no signs during his play. I will assume he is okay and update as warranted. He pushed Blair White to the bench and should play again this week as Collie still heals from his hand surgery. Reggie Wayne was held to a season low 39 yards on four catches against the Texans but he has his first touchdown in five games.

Pierre Garcon continues to see an major uptick in production while Collie is out.

The Eagles secondary is good but not great and Manning should land two of his scores to a wideout. Wayne should be a near lock this week given that only #1 wide receivers score on the Eagles but Garcon is another very solid play given that the Colts will need to throw more often with a banged up rushing attack.

TIGHT ENDS: Jacob Tamme may be the next great tight end - or at least he'll look like it for the rest of the season. Manning threw nine passes at Tamme which was three more than in his first two seasons combined. Tamme caught six for 64 yards and a touchdown but that reflects in part what the defense was giving up (that and playing with Peyton Manning as your quarterback). It went as well as could be expected and Tamme now becomes a weekly facet in the Colts passing arsenal.

The Eagles are weak against the position when opponents rely on it and apparently Manning has no problem. Look for another encouraging game from the third-year player.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points IND 2 19 1 12 8 24
Preventing Fantasy Points PHI 25 18 11 24 13 12
Advantage(+) or Disadvantage(-) IND 23 -1 10 12 5 -12


Philadelphia Eagles (4-3))
Homefield: Lincoln Financial Field
Turf
  Opp Score   Opp Score
1 GB L 20-27 10 @WAS --
2 @DET W 35-32 11 NYG --
3 @JAC W 28-3 12 @CHI --
4 WAS L 12-17 13 HOU --
5 @SF W 27-24 14 @DAL --
6 ATL W 31-17 15 @NYG --
7 @TEN L 19-37 16 MIN --
8 Bye - 17 DAL --
9 IND -- - - -
Eagles Report | Statistics | Roster
PHILADELPHIA vs IND Rush Catch Pass
QB Michael Vick 40,1 - 240,1
RB LeSean McCoy 70,1 20 -
TE Brent Celek - 20 -
WR Riley Cooper - 30 -
WR Jason Avant - 40 -
WR DeSean Jackson - 70 -
WR Jeremy Maclin - 70,1 -
PK David Akers 1 FG 3 XP -

Pregame Notes: The Eagles welcome back Michael Vick from his chest injury but are still probably without DeSean Jackson despite having been on their bye week. The Eagles are now one game behind the Giants with both meeting yet to happen. Losing here would not be a disaster, but it would make the rest of the season a constant struggle to catch up.

QUARTERBACK: Michael Vick is back in practice and has no limitations from his rib injury that he claims is 100% healed. What Vick will do is less certain than it may seem given that he has only played in two full games and those were against the Lions and Jaguars - hardly a top ranked secondary for either. Bottom ranked? Very close. So while Vick as a runner remains dangerous, his role as a passer still has at least some tests to pass before we can all assume that he has turned a new leaf and become an actual good passer after so many years of scrambling around and dumping it off to Alge Crumpler. This game will be a nice test and comes at home.

Another note - his two full games as a starter were greatly influenced by DeSean Jackson who had 135 and 153 yards in those games with a score in each. Jackson is out and the defenses are no longer as soft.

The Colts have given up a passing score in almost every game but rarely more than the one and with sub-200 passing yards allowed in most cases. I like Vick to throw for one score - he is still without Jackson but to rush in a touchdown as well.

RUNNING BACKS: LeSean McCoy had only scored once since week two and his two notable games as a runner were against the Lions and 49ers - again not exactly the top of the defensive heap. But he does balance that out with an active role as a receiver though what will be interesting is how this works with Vick back. McCoy has enjoyed being a major relief target for Kevin Kolb and in four games he had a total of 27 catches for 231 yards or right around seven catches for 56 yards per game on average. In his two starts when Vick had the full game, he only had a total of six catches for 15 yards - major difference.

It is too early to predict the demise of McCoy as a receiver but so far it has not gone well with Vick under center and willing to run around instead of dumping it off.

McCoy faces one of the worst units at stopping the run and more so in a road game. The Colts have allowed nine scores to a running back in a road game so expect at least one to end up here.

WIDE RECEIVERS: DeSean Jackson is still waiting to clear a final concussion test with an independent neurologist but he did practice with the team and may end up as a game time decision. His inclusion in the game will do much to help the passing though the Colts are far better against the pass than run. Jeremy Maclin has been mostly solid these recent weeks by himself and in his last home game totaled a career best 159 yards and two scores against the visiting Falcons.

Jason Avant has been better filling in for Jackson but only with around 60 yards per game and he still has never scored. Riley Cooper backfilled to the slot and scored last week but has almost no other catches to his credit.

The Colts have only allowed two touchdowns to wideouts in the four road games thus far and aside from the Denver game there has not been much yardage to share. This will be a good test for Vick but Maclin has to be considered a must start and the most dangerous receiver. If Jackson returns it changes this up but I will assume he is out until cleared and a certain starter. Sadly that may not be until this late afternoon game.

TIGHT ENDS: Brent Celek has spent his bye week healing up from his wrist injury and claims to be 100% healthy finally but he also faces 1.) the Colts defense ranked #1 against tight ends: and 2.) will play with Michael Vick who never looked for him in the red zone. Maybe next week...

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points PHI 4 13 7 23 14 9
Preventing Fantasy Points IND 9 27 14 1 15 3
Advantage(+) or Disadvantage(-) PHI 5 14 7 -22 1 -6

WEEK 9
2010
TB at ATL MIA at BAL NYG at SEA PIT at CIN
NO at CAR NE at CLE KC at OAK DEN, JAC
CHI at BUF SD at HOU IND at PHI SF, STL
  NYJ at DET ARI at MIN DAL at GB TEN, WAS
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