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Predictions & Projections
David Dorey  

Sortable Player Projections | Game Predictions Summary | Projections by Team

NYJ at DEN (thu) * CIN at BAL PHI at NYG * TEN at ATL
* ARI at SF * DAL at WAS SD at CHI KC at NE (mon)
* BUF at MIA * JAC at CLE SEA at STL Bye Week

Prediction: TEN 16, ATL 27

Update: Julio Jones is listed as questionable but has not practiced this week because of his hamstring and is not expected to play. Harry Douglas will again sub for him.

The Titans are 5-4 and two games behind the Texans in the AFC South. They bring a 2-2 road record to Atlanta where the Falcons are also 5-4 with a 2-2 home record. This should end up with the home Falcons since the Titans are only good on the road facing weak teams.

Tennessee Titans
Homefield: LP Field
  Opp Score   Opp Score
1 @JAC 14-16 10 @CAR 30-3
2 BAL 26-13 11 @ATL -
3 DEN 17-14 12 TB -
4 @CLE 31-13 13 @BUF -
5 @PIT 17-38 14 NO -
6 Bye - 15 @IND -
7 HOU 7-41 16 JAC -
8 IND 27-10 17 @HOU -
9 CIN 17-24      
Titans Report | Statistics | Roster
TENNESSEE at ATL Rush Catch Pass
QB Matt Hasselbeck - - 220,1
RB Chris Johnson 50 40 -
TE Jared Cook - 20 -
WR Lavelle Hawkins - 50,1 -
WR Nate Washington - 40 -
WR Damian Williams - 70 -
PK Rob Bironas 3 FG 1 XP -
Pregame Notes: The Titans laid the wood to the Panthers last week in a game where Chris Johnson did not suck and the offense looked like it was all-world. That was hardly the case against the Bengals or Texans in the last month. The Titans have run through a month of home games or light road opponents and now hit a more challenging stretch.

QUARTERBACK: So far, Matt Hasselbeck has thrown for one or more scores in every game this year but it has been just the one touchdown in four of the last five matchups. Hasselbeck has settled down to a rather average standard every week of one score and low 200's in passing. No matter the opponent or need really, just low 200's and one score.

The Falcons have only allowed six passing touchdowns in Atlanta over four games played there and that is going against Michael Vick, Aaron Rodgers, Cam Newton and Drew Brees. No reason to expect more than normal from Hasselbeck.

RUNNING BACKS: Finally, Chris Johnson blew up and shook off the rust and is back to form. He did gain 130 yards on 27 runs in Carolina, scored once and added four catches for 44 yards for a heart-warming return to yesteryear. But most of that came in the second half and well over half of the rushing yards were in in the fourth quarter of a game well in hand.

That was only Johnson's second score of the year but encouraging all the same. He had more runs that were reminiscent of when he was still playing for the bog contract.

The Falcons have a top five defense against running backs and only three runners have scored on them. No runner has gained more than the 95 yards by LeSean McCoy. Johnson is not going to get any freebies at the end of this game so expect a drop back to lower stats again this week. It is encouraging to see Johnson with back to back games of around 45 yards as a receiver.

WIDE RECEIVERS: Nate Washington is playing through a sore hip but has been pretty mediocre for the last month with no games over 40 yards. Damian Williams has asserted himself and become the primary wide receiver with scores in both of the most recent games and a career best 107 yards in Carolina last Sunday. Lavelle Hawkins provides the slot work but has been marginal in all but the Bengals loss. Williams is the main man here now but this is a mediocre pass offense and produces only mediocre stats anyway.

The Falcons are below average against the pass but remember - they have faced almost all the best quarterbacks. I like the score to end up with the non-obvious Hawkins but the confidence level is low.

TIGHT ENDS: Jared Cook has been little used this year but his two best games were on the road when he had 93 yards and a score in Cleveland and 59 yards in Pittsburgh. But the offense has turned away from him in the five games since and he cannot be relied on for more than minimal yardage.

Gaining Fantasy Points TEN 17 26 11 16 21 17
Preventing Fantasy Points ATL 23 5 23 8 24 16
Advantage +31 to -31 TEN 6 -21 12 -8 3 -1

Atlanta Falcons
Homefield: Georgia Dome
  Opp Score   Opp Score
1 @CHI 12-30 10 NO 23-26
2 PHI 35-31 11 TEN -
3 @TB 13-16 12 MIN -
4 @SEA 30-28 13 @HOU -
5 GB 14-25 14 @CAR -
6 CAR 31-17 15 JAC -
7 @DET 23-16 16 @NO -
8 Bye - 17 TB -
9 @IND 31-7 - - -
Falcons Report | Statistics | Roster
ATLANTA vs TEN Rush Catch Pass
QB Matt Ryan - - 240,2
RB Michael Turner 110,1 - -
TE Tony Gonzalez - 60,1 -
WR Julio Jones - 50 -
WR Roddy White - 40 -
WR Harry Douglas - 70,1 -
PK Matt Bryant 2 FG 3 XP -

Pregame Notes: The Falcons have a two home games now that should be wins and then the rest of the schedule is not only brutal, but it goes through the division with road games in Carolina and New Orleans. The Falcons have to win this week and next to entertain any idea of postseason play and even then it is only possible because the NFC is not as good this year. Losing to the Saints last week may have already cast their destiny.

QUARTERBACK: Matt Ryan has been good for at least one score since the season opener and after a five game stretch with just one touchdown, he served up three in Indianapolis and then two last week against the Saints with good yardage in both. But he may be without Julio Jones again this week. Ryan has been mostly a disappointment this year outside of the last two games but only in the sense of lofty expectations.

The Titans have allowed multiple passing scores in four different games including as many as five when they played against the Steelers. Ryan is a lock for one touchdown and has a good shot at two this week. You could feel better about it if Jones can play.

RUNNING BACKS: Michael Turner has scored seven times this season and rushed for over 100 yards four times. He has only nine receptions on the season but has been a lock for 20+ carries in a home game. The Titans have faced very few good rushing teams so far other than the Texans that exploded for 229 rushing yards that week. This will be a good test for the defense that faced the Steelers in Pittsburgh and gave them 156 rushing yards with Rashard Mendenhall out that week.

WIDE RECEIVERS: Julio Jones missed two weeks with a hamstring strain and came back to lay down 131 yards and two scores in Indy. The next game - injured his other hammy. HC Mike Smith is being evasive about Jones' status this week and the reports were that Jones wanted to return last week but the trainers wanted to keep him out to prevent any more damage. I will assume that a very limited Jones will play and update as needed. Harry Douglas filled in for him against the Saints and turned in a career best eight catches for 133 yards. That was double his best game from this season though he still has no touchdowns. Eric Weems will step up if Jones cannot play.

Roddy White has a problem this week since he has been stuck around 60 yards or so every week and has only three touchdowns. He will be dancing with Cortland Finnegan this week and that normally pretty much shuts down the receiver. The Falcons will try to get better matchups and it only takes one play to score but White carries even more risk this week. I'll credit the score to Douglas but mainly because he is not Roddy White this week.

TIGHT ENDS: Tony Gonzalez is having a great swan song for a year with six touchdowns and over 50 yards in most games. He had a touchdown in each of the last two weeks and now faces one of the weaker teams against the position. Gonzo should have a touchdown and decent yardage this week and that should be nearly a lock.

Gaining Fantasy Points ATL 11 7 19 9 13 23
Preventing Fantasy Points TEN 13 20 5 27 9 4
Advantage +31 to -31 ATL 2 13 -14 18 -4 -19

NYJ at DEN (thu) CIN at BAL PHI at NYG TEN at ATL
ARI at SF DAL at WAS SD at CHI KC at NE (mon)
BUF at MIA JAC at CLE SEA at STL Bye Week

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