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 10
November 5, 2003
Season Ticket
Sun 1 PM TB at CAR Sun 4 PM Sun 8:30 PM Bye Weeks
ARZ at PIT HOU at CIN TB at CAR BAL at STL Denver
ATL at NYG IND at JAX MIN at SD Mon 9 PM New England
CHI at DET MIA at TEN BUF at DAL PHI at GB New Orleans
CLE at KC SEA at WAS NYJ at OAK *updated San Francisco
   
Baltimore vs St. Louis Sun, Nov 9; 8:30 PM on ESPN at Edward Jones Dome
  Baltimore Rush Catch Pass
QB Kyle Boller 10 0 180,1
RB Jamal Lewis 70,1 10 0
TE Todd Heap 0 60,1 0
WR Travis Taylor 0 60 0
WR Frank Sanders 0 10 0
WR Marcus Robinson 0 30 0
  St. Louis Rush Catch Pass
QB Marc Bulger 0 0 300,3
RB Marshall Faulk 60 20 0
TE B. Manumaleuna 0 20,1 0
WR Isaac Bruce 0 60 0
WR Torry Holt 0 110,1 0
WR Kevin Curtis 0 50,1 0
WR Dane Looker 0 20 0

Game Prediction: BAL 14, STL 27

This game slants towards the Rams who are very tough at home. The Ravens are on a two game winning streak but are only 2-2 on the road this year. The Rams are 4-0 at home. Bulger should be able to make the passing game work which can take the Ravens out of the ground game that they so dearly love. And Baltimore is not going to win an air war against anyone, much less against the best one in the league.

Baltimore Notes

The Ravens rise to 5-3 and have a two game lead in the AFC North.

Quarterbacks: Kyle Boller is becoming an everything or nothing quarterback. He completed four passes last week for 117 yards but finished 10 of 23 for 156 yards. He also has eight fumbles on the season, losing one that was returned for a score last week.

Running backs: Jamal Lewis only gained 68 yards on 21 carries last week to end his string of 100 yard games. The Jaguars were able to corral Lewis the entire game but the Ravens hit them with Chester Taylor when they were not looking. Taylor ripped off an impressive 29 yard touchdown run in the fourth quarter to put the game out of reach. This week will be another challenge as the Ravens play against one of the stingiest rush defenses.

Wide Receivers: While Frank Sanders and Marcus Robinson have become almost invisible, Travis Taylor is still catching the odd long pass and ended last week with 63 yards on three catches. The trio will likely need to step up their play if the Ravens are going to hang with the Rams all afternoon. Okay. So that is being overly optimistic. Taylor will have to matter for the Ravens to win.

Tight Ends: Todd Heap only had two catches last week, but gained 53 yards, scored one touchdown and had no officiating calls go against him. That makes three weeks that Heap has exceeded 50 yards receiving.

Match against the defense: SS Adam Archuleta is expected back this week but DT Leonard Little will likely not. That hurts the run stopping a little that will be key to this game. The Rams are a definite good home team as all three of their losses have been on the road. Playing in St. Louis meant being able to hold Ahman Green to only 35 yards though that is the only strong runner that has showed up there.

Troublesome for the Rams is that they allowed the duo of Hearst and Barlow to net 156 rushing yards last week. The Rams are carpet people and Lewis enters the game against a fast defense. He will be able to gain some yards but will be limited if the Rams can get up in the score and take the Ravens out of their game plan.

The Rams have allowed passing yardage this season but mostly in garbage time while in the prevent. Todd Heap will have a height advantage over the STL linebackers that will already be worried about Lewis.

St. Louis Notes

The Rams fall to 5-3 and trail Seattle by a game in the NFC West.

Quarterbacks: While Marc Bulger threw for 378 yards last week, it was largely ineffective since he only scored one touchdown. Bulger was rushed in the pocket and knocked around more than normal and the Ravens will be applying the same sort of pressure this week. Last week turned into pitch-and-catch with Tory Holt for most of the game.

Running backs: Just when you think Marshall Faulk is ready to play, he ends up merely changing from jeans to a uniform to watch the game. He never entered the 49er game and allowed Arlen Harris to get whacked for only nine yards on eight carries. Faulk is expected to practice fully this week and start and actually play. Lamar Gordon still has a high ankle sprain and will likely not play for several more weeks.

Wide Receivers: Torry Holt now leads all receivers in the NFL with 63 catches, 978 yards and nine touchdowns. He has already exceeded his career best seven scores in a season and is on track to shatter all his other personal records for receptions and yardage in a season. Last week Holt had eleven catches for 200 yards and one score. He was thrown the ball 21 times in the game. Isaac Bruce (4-93) only had seven passes. Kevin Curtis (4-13) is back in the receiver rotation along with Dane Looker (3-32).

Tight Ends: Absolutely disappeared last week mostly since they were trying to pass block. Could happen again this week if the blocking does not improve.

Match against the defense: CB Corey Fuller is expected to return this week after missing last Sunday with groin and hamstring injuries but Gary Baxter has done well in his place anyway. Fuller would be matched against Holt on most plays. The Ravens have allowed good passing yardage and scores this season, including Blake (247-2), Kitna (274-3) and Maddox (260-3) all on the road. As long as Bulger gets protection, he should have some success.

Faulk will be back but is less likely to gain much rushing against a stout set of linebackers. If the passing game loosens them up, Faulk could have a nice game especially factoring in receptions though Faulk has not had a game of over 33 yards receiving this season.

Team Comparisons - Current team rankings (1-32) for FF points scored or allowed by position
Rank (1-32)
QB
RB
WR
TE
PK
DEF
BAL Scores
32
7
32
2
3
7
STL Allows
14
3
21
3
2
27
BAL AP
-18
-4
-11
1
-1
20
Rank (1-32)
QB
RB
WR
TE
PK
DEF
STL Scores
1
24
1
21
4
4
BAL Allows
13
12
7
28
9
6
STL AP
12
-12
6
7
5
2
Offensive ranks lower = gains more points, Defensive ranks lower = allows less points
AP = Advatage Points, the net difference between a positional rank gained or allowed by the teams.
BAL
STL
2003 Game Averages
STL
BAL
Gains
Allows
QB's
Gains
Allows
151
202
Pass yards
308
212
0.8
1.5
Pass TDs
1.7
1.2
2.8
1.5
Interceptions
1.5
1.5
4
7
Rush yards
7
9
0.0
0.0
Rush TDs
0.5
0.0
---
---
RB's
---
---
137
81
Rush yards
85
90
0.8
0.2
Rush TDs
0.8
0.3
27
33
Receive yards
22
43
0.0
0.3
Receive TD's
0.0
0.2
---
---
WR's
---
---
58
145
Receive yards
250
129
0.3
1.2
Receive TD's
1.7
0.5
---
---
TE's
---
---
67
24
Receive yards
36
40
0.5
0.0
Receive TD's
0.0
0.5
---
---
PK's
---
---
2.3
0.8
Field Goals
2.0
1.3
2.2
2.3
Extra Points
3.2
1.8
---
---
DEF/ST
---
---
0.3
0.5
Fumbles
1.2
0.7
1.5
1.5
Interceptions
1.5
1.0
0.3
0.5
Touchdowns
0.2
0.0
2.7
1.7
Sacks
2.2
1.7
0.0
0.0
Safeties
0.2
0.0
Ravens (5-3)
Score Opp.
15-34 @PIT
33-13 CLE
24-10 @SD
10-17 KC
Week 5 BYE
26-18 @ARZ
26-34 @CIN
26-6 DEN
24-17 JAX
Week 10 @STL
Week 11 @MIA
Week 12 SEA
Week 13 SF
Week 14 CIN
Week 15 @OAK
Week 16 @CLE
Week 17 PIT
Rams (5-3)
Score Opp.
13-23 @NYG
27-24 SF
23-24 @SEA
37-13 ARZ
Week 5 BYE
36-0 ATL
34-24 GB
33-21 @PIT
10-30 @SF
Week 10 BAL
Week 11 @CHI
Week 12 @ARZ
Week 13 MIN
Week 14 @CLE
Week 15 SEA
Week 16 CIN
Week 17 @DET

* Fantasy point rankings calculated using standard Huddle fantasy points