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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
   
Chicago vs Detroit Sun, Nov 9; 1 PM on FOX at Ford Field
  Chicago Rush Catch Pass
QB Chris Chandler 0 0 180, 2
RB Anthony Thomas 90,1 0 0
TE Desmond Clark 0 20 0
WR Marty Booker 0 70,1 0
WR Dez White 0 60,1 0
WR David Terrell 0 20 0
  Detroit Rush Catch Pass
QB Joey Harrington 0 0 190,1
RB Shawn Bryson 40 30,1 0
RB Olandis Gary 40 10 0
TE Mikhael Ricks 0 20 0
WR Bill Schroeder 0 40 0
WR Az-Zahir Hakim 0 50 0
WR Scotty Anderson 0 20 0
WR Shawn Jefferson 0 10 0

Game Prediction: CHI 21, DET 16

The Lions would be on a two game winning streak if they won here and that is just mind-bending. The Bears already won 24-16 two weeks ago and that was without Anthony Thomas or Marty Booker. Look for Chicago to continue their crawl upwards while the Lions continue to search for anything that works offensively.

Chicago Notes

The Bears are on a two game winning streak that started with these Lions and are 3-5 on the season.

Quarterbacks: Chris Chandler did not throw for any scores last week, but he had 224 yards passing and completed a season high 70% of his passes. With Anthony Thomas in gear, the need to throw was not there and Chandler played an effective, safe game. He had 207 yards and one score against these Lions two weeks ago.

Running backs: While Anthony Thomas missed the previous Lions game, he gained 111 yards and two touchdowns last week against the Chargers and his two previous starts resulted in 123 and 96 yards gained. If Brock Forsey can score against Detroit, then Thomas certainly should.

Wide Receivers: Chandler mixed up the passes to Dez White (7-58) and David Terrell (7-38) last week but Marty Booker is expected to finally return this week after missing three games with a sprained ankle. The rookies Bobby Wade and Justin Gage have made some nice catches the previous weeks and with Chandler at the helm, the Bears have a passing game to go with the success of Thomas rushing.

Tight Ends: Desmond Clark only had one catch for 31 yards last week and has not proven to be a favorite of Chandler so far. Clark has been banged up lately though.

Match against the defense: The Bears handled the visiting Lions only two weeks ago and this go around they have Marty Booker and Anthony Thomas. Look for Thomas to score at least once since all running backs have and gain at least 80 yards. He had 90 yards and one score in Detroit last season.

Chandler should be able to improve on his 207 yards the last time with a better running game and Marty Booker back in the fold. This is the same place that Quincy Carter threw three touchdowns to Terry Glenn. Dez White will benefit from having Booker back as well and should score.

Detroit Notes

The Lions rise to 2-6 on the season with their defeat of the Raiders.

Quarterbacks: Though the Lions won last week, Joey Harrington had little to do with it. He only completed 13 of 21 for 117 yards and one score with one interception. When he faced the Bears in week eight, he had 180 yards, one score and two interceptions.

Running backs: Mixing and matching with no discernible pattern, last week Olandis Gary (15-46, 1 TD) had more opportunities than Shawn Bryson (12-53). The previous week against the Bears, Bryson (14-67) played far better than Gary (8-18). Bryson is also the team leader in receptions with 26 receptions.

Wide Receivers: They had a total of three for 17 yards last week. I kid you not. Against the Bears, Az-Zahir Hakim led the group with five catches for 38 yards. I kid you not.

Tight Ends: The only good news here is that Mikhael Ricks caught the only touchdown against the Bears when they played. Last week he had one catch for 9 yards, better than all other receivers except for Scotty Anderson's one catch for 10 yards.

Match against the defense: The Bears are on the road in Detroit, but the Lions have not improved since they met only two weeks ago. They won last week by standing around and allowing the Raiders to beat themselves since they only had 222 yards of total offense.

Look for for some inexplicable rotation of both Bryson and Gary to not really matter and for Harrington to again fall short with more interceptions than touchdowns.

Team Comparisons - Current team rankings (1-32) for FF points scored or allowed by position
Rank (1-32)
QB
RB
WR
TE
PK
DEF
CHI Scores
21
17
21
22
5
26
DET Allows
31
8
25
19
16
22
CHI AP
10
-9
4
-3
-11
-4
Rank (1-32)
QB
RB
WR
TE
PK
DEF
DET Scores
29
19
30
16
29
13
CHI Allows
3
24
6
18
15
23
DET AP
-26
5
-24
2
-14
10
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.
CHI
DET
2003 Game Averages
DET
CHI
Gains
Allows
QB's
Gains
Allows
182
224
Pass yards
160
174
0.5
1.7
Pass TDs
0.8
1.2
1.2
0.7
Interceptions
1.8
1.2
32
19
Rush yards
9
8
0.2
0.5
Rush TDs
0.0
0.0
---
---
RB's
---
---
106
89
Rush yards
87
113
1.0
0.5
Rush TDs
0.5
1.0
7
33
Receive yards
42
30
0.0
0.0
Receive TD's
0.2
0.2
---
---
WR's
---
---
143
155
Receive yards
89
119
0.5
1.2
Receive TD's
0.3
0.5
---
---
TE's
---
---
33
36
Receive yards
29
25
0.0
0.3
Receive TD's
0.3
0.5
---
---
PK's
---
---
2.3
1.3
Field Goals
1.2
1.5
1.8
2.8
Extra Points
1.7
2.3
---
---
DEF/ST
---
---
0.2
0.3
Fumbles
0.5
0.5
1.2
1.8
Interceptions
0.8
1.2
0.2
0.3
Touchdowns
0.3
0.2
0.7
0.8
Sacks
2.2
2.8
0.0
0.0
Safeties
0.0
0.0
Bears (3-5)
Score Opp.
7-49 @SF
13-24 @MIN
Week 3 BYE
23-38 GB
24-21 OAK
13-20 @NO
17-24 @SEA
24-16 DET
20-7 SD
Week 10 @DET
Week 11 STL
Week 12 @DEN
Week 13 ARZ
Week 14 @GB
Week 15 MIN
Week 16 WAS
Week 17 @KC
Lions(2-6)
Score Opp.
42-24 ARZ
6-31 @GB
13-23 MIN
16-20 @DEN
17-24 @SF
Week 6 BYE
7-38 DAL
16-24 @CHI
23-13 OAK
Week 10 CHI
Week 11 @SEA
Week 12 @MIN
Week 13 GB
Week 14 SD
Week 15 @KC
Week 16 @CAR
Week 17 STL

* Fantasy point rankings calculated using standard Huddle fantasy points