VOTED #1 FANTASY FOOTBALL SITE
1998, 1999, 2000, 2001 & 2002
PRIORITY NEWS   MESSAGE BOARDS JOIN   
HOME ARTICLES STATISTICS WEEKLY FEATURES TEAM LINKS NFL RESOURCES  
Predictions & Projections
By David M. Dorey
 
The Huddle
WEEK 7
October 15, 2003
Season Ticket
Sun 1 PM TEN at CAR Sun 4 PM Mon 9 PM Bye Week:
*BAL at CIN *NE at MIA *WAS at BUF KC at OAK Arizona
DAL at DET *NO at ATL *CHI at SEA   Indianapolis
*DEN at MIN *PHI at NYG NYJ at HOU Times EST Jacksonville
GB at STL *SD at CLE *TB at SF *updated Pittsburgh
   
Tennessee vs Carolina Sun, Oct 19; 1 PM on CBS at Ericsson Stadium
  Tennessee Rush Catch Pass
QB Steve McNair 30 0 290,2
RB Eddie George 40 10 0
TE Erron Kinney 0 20 0
WR Derrick Mason 0 90 0
WR Tyrone Calico 0 70,1 0
WR Justin McCareins 0 50 0
WR Drew Bennett 0 30,1 0
  Carolina Rush Catch Pass
QB Jake Delhomme 0 0 190,1
RB Stephen Davis 110,1 10 0
TE Kris Mangum 0 10 0
WR Muhsin Muhammad 0 50 0
WR Ricky Proehl 0 40,1 0
WR Steve Smith 0 60 0

Game Prediction: TEN 23, CAR 17

Tennessee Notes

Quarterbacks: It has only taken Steve McNair a short nine years to turn into an NFL version of what he was in college. A premier long baller. Now that the Titan rushing game is buried beside Elvis, the Titans have not only come out throwing, they are not even using the popular dink-n-dunk west coast offense. McNair threw for 421 yards last Sunday against the Texans and gained over 15 yards per pass ATTEMPT. He had over 23 yards per completion. He has 821 yards passing in the last two games. It would take players like Kyle Boller two years to accomplish that many yards.

Running backs: According to game programs, the Titans do have some on the roster. Eddie George plugged along last week for 60 yards on 19 carries, eclipsing the elusive three yards per carry mark only because he accidentally gained 17 yards on one run. At the rate McNair is going, George should see better numbers from the entire defense playing 15 yards off the line of scrimmage.

Chris Brown (4-15) had his hamstring tighten up again and had less work than intended.

Wide Receivers: Last week Derrick Mason had a career game, gaining 177 yards and three touchdowns on only six passes. Mason scored on passes of 32, 46 and 50 yards. That's a far cry from the one catch for four yards he had two weeks before against the Steelers.

Tyrone Calico had four catches for 92 yards while Justin McCareins had two catches for "only" 68 yards. While Calico has seven catches the past two weeks, he had seventeen passes. McCareins only had five passes.

Tight Ends: The loss of Frank Wycheck coupled with the poor running game has led to this explosion of passing. The Titans normally like a two tight end set but without Wycheck and having Shad Meier miss the Texan game with a concussion, Tennessee had little choice but to pursue the passing game with the wideouts.

Meier may be back this week but the Titans are starting to shift away from their tight ends. Erron Kinney only had three catches for 38 yards during the two week hail storm.

Match against the defense: The Panthers are slightly better than average against the run but the Titans do not have a decent rushing game anyway. Expect the same results here.

The Panthers weak link is against the pass. This is not a good thing for them this week. While they have scratched out a 5-0 mark, they have allowed quarterbacks to shine - Brunell (272 yards, 2 TDs), Brad Johnson (349 yards, 1 TD) and Manning (293 yards, 1 TD). Their numbers appear stronger than they are thanks to Atlanta and New Orleans.

Carolina knew Marvin Harrison was coming and still allowed him 119 yards. Where they were worse was against the Buccaneers who have a diverse passing attack (read - no great receivers) and Tennessee is able to mix Mason, Calico and McCareins in ways Carolina has not yet faced. The Titans can and must succeed through the air and the Panthers have been susceptible to that.

Carolina Notes

Quarterbacks: The Panthers come off their best passing effort of the year but that only meant that Jake Delhomme threw for 181 yards with one touchdown. Other than week one against the Jaguars, Delhomme has played the role of a game manager, handing off the ball and minimizing mistakes. That probably will not be enough this week.

Running backs: After gaining 76 yards on 15 carries with one touchdown, Stephen Davis was forced from the game last week with a bruised forearm. HC John Fox literally had to have someone hide his helmet to keep him out of the game. Davis had an MRI on his arm which was negative and he is expected to play this week.

In his place, De'Shaun Foster was no drop-off, gaining 85 yards on 16 carries and showing a nice speed to the outside on several runs. While Davis will return this week, Fox has stated the Foster will continue his role as relief for Davis which previously has meant around eight to ten carries for the run-happy team.

Wide Receivers: After five games, the Panthers finally produced a 100 yard receiver when Steve Smith ran in a 52 yard touchdown and finished with 103 yards on six catches. Muhsin Muhammad only managed two catches for ten yards and for both receivers, no incompletions were thrown to them.

Tight Ends: Kris Mangum had one catch last week but that was all the tight end work doled out.

Match against the defense: The Titans have allowed Edgerrin James to gain 120 yards this season though it took him 30 carries to get there during a blowout. The Titans also allowed the Patriots to combine Antowain Smith and Mike Cloud for 153 yards on only 23 carries in their other loss this season. The Titans can be ran on and that is about all the Panthers do anyway though Deuce McAllister was held to only 8 yards on 11 carries.

The Panthers must establish the ground game and be successful with it in order to win. They know it, the Titans know it, and so far no one has been able to do much against it. The Titans will be stacking the line and daring the Panthers to throw.

Tennessee has given up 300 yard games to both Maddox and Carr this season, but Carolina has nothing even close to the passing weapons of those teams. If Carolina is forced to throw, they will likely lose.

Game Prediction: The Panthers have also only really been behind in one game when Delhomme saved the day in week one. Otherwise, they have controlled the scoreboard and not been forced to come from behind and make up any significant deficit. They simply do not have the means to do that.

Tennessee is red hot right now with McNair passing, but Carolina at home presents a good challenge and the only two Titan losses have been on the road this year.

The key to the game is if McNair can get a lead - via the pass - and force the Panthers out of their game plan. He should be able to do this considering the different style of passing the Titans present lately and the effect on the opposing defenses. Look for McNair to buy more time running this week and gain some yards on the ground as well. Played in Carolina should make this a closer game, but the Titans are playing great everywhere but rushing while the Panthers are playing great everywhere but passing.

If Tennessee can get past the Panthers, they are setting themselves up for a definite playoff run since their week nine bye neatly separates the season into two halves. The first eight weeks have five road games but the second half has five home games.

Team Comparisons - Current team rankings (1-32) by position for FF points scored or allowed by position
Rank (1-32) QB RB WR TE PK DEF
TEN Scores
3
31
2
11
8
4
CAR Allows
13
12
23
14
3
7
TEN AP 10 -19 21 3 -5 3
Rank (1-32) QB RB WR TE PK DEF
CAR Scores
31
4
25
28
2
20
TEN Allows
18
23
22
20
23
23
CAR AP -13 19 -3 -8 21 3
Offensive ranks - lower = gains more points, Defensive Ranks lower = allows less points
AP = Advantage Points, the net difference between a positional rank gained or allowed by the teams.
TEN CAR 2003 Game Averages CAR TEN
Gains Allows QB's Gains Allows
282
249
Pass yards
142
257
1.8
1
Pass TDs
1.0
1.2
0.5
0.8
Interceptions
1.0
0.3
8
5
Rush yards
0
4
0.3
0.0
Rush TDs
0.0
0.0
----
----
RB's
----
----
64
94
Rush yards
170
78
0.3
0.4
Rush TDs
0.6
0.8
20
44
Receive yards
30
57
0.0
0.0
Receive TD's
0.0
0.2
----
----
WR's
----
----
212
150
Receive yards
89
149
1.7
1.0
Receive TD's
1.0
1.0
----
----
TE's
----
----
50
45
Receive yards
23
51
0.2
0.0
Receive TD's
0.0
0.0
----
----
PK's
----
----
1.8
1.4
Field Goals
2.6
1.8
2.8
1.2
Extra Points
1.8
2.3
----
----
DEF/ST
----
----
0.5
0.6
Fumbles
0.6
0.7
0.8
1.0
Interceptions
0.6
0.5
1.0
0.0
Touchdowns
0.2
0.7
1.8
1.6
Sacks
2.2
1.7
0.2
0.0
Safeties
0.2
0.2
Panthers (5-0)
Score Opp.
24-23 JAX
12-9 @TB
Week 3 BYE
23-3 ATL
19-13 NO
23-20 @IND
Week 7 TEN
Week 8 @NO
Week 9 @HOU
Week 10 TB
Week 11 WAS
Week 12 @DAL
Week 13 PHI
Week 14 @ATL
Week 15 @ARZ
Week 16 DET
Week 17 @NYG
Tennessee (4-2)
Score Opp.
25-20 OAK
7-33 @IND
27-12 NO
30-13 @PIT
30-38 @NE
38-17 HOU
Week 7 @CAR
Week 8 @JAX
Week 9 BYE
Week 10 MIA
Week 11 JAX
Week 12 @ATL
Week 13 @NYJ
Week 14 IND
Week 15 BUF
Week 16 @HOU
Week 17 TB

* Fantasy point rankings calculated using standard Huddle fantasy points