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
   
Tampa Bay vs Carolina Sun, Nov 9; 1 PM on FOX at Ericsson Stadium
  Tampa Bay Rush Catch Pass
QB Brad Johnson 0 0 280,2
RB Michael Pittman 60 30 0
TE Ken Dilger 0 20,1 0
WR Keyshawn Johnson 0 80 0
WR Keenan McCardell 0 100,1 0
  Carolina Rush Catch Pass
QB Jake Delhomme 0 0 140,1
RB Stephen Davis 60 0 0
RB De'Shaun Foster 60 0 0
TE Kris Mangum 0 20,1 0
WR Muhsin Muhammad 0 40 0
WR Ricky Proehl 0 20 0
WR Steve Smith 0 50 0

Game Prediction: TB 20, CAR 17

Update: Now Stephen Davis has missed the last two days of practice with a sprained ankle that apparently just "popped up". He has not been ruled out of the game this week but he has not practiced either, receiving eight hours of treatment a day. He even conceded there was a chance that he might not play, though he also said he was sure he would play.

All we know is that he has not practiced, is getting treatment all day every day and his coach is trying to hide which ankle is actually bothering him. I am adding in Foster into the rushing mix and lowering Davis' numbers. He may play the entire game, he may play some and be limited and could still miss the game all together depending on how well obviously very dedicated treatment goes.

These two teams always play it tough and the Panthers have a tendency to either lose a game outright or just barely win it. Five of their six wins have been by less than a touchdown. The Buccaneers are on an incredible every other game plan and have yet to win or lose twice in a row this season. This is a huge game - make no doubt. If Carolina wins, they rise to 7-2 with a three game lead over the Bucs. If they lose, there is only one game separating them with lots of time to make it up.

This game could go either way but the Bucs can win it. They should have won their week two matchup were it not for a series of special team gaffes. The Panthers are playing well but their passing game is limited to only Steve Smith who only had 37 yards in the previous game. The Bucs are ready to make a stand and their recent loss to the Saints is just one of those odd matchup problems compounded, perhaps, by them looking ahead to this week.

The Panthers have played just well enough to win six times but have no passing game outside of covering one player. This game is too big for Gruden not to rally the troops.

Tampa Bay Notes

The Buccaneers fall to 4-4 with their third home loss and continue their trend of losing every other game this season.

Quarterbacks: Brad Johnson is hardly to blame for the losses by the Bucs this season. Johnson already has 2080 yards passing and his 16 touchdowns is tied for the league's best. Not surprisingly, in the every other week loss his numbers normally exceed 300 yards. This week they are planning a win and normally he has lesser games in those though he did have four touchdowns in the win over the Redskins.

Running backs: Michael Pittman only had 48 yards on 16 rushes last week against the Saints but added 49 yards on six catches with one touchdown. The Gruden system of sharing has been replaced with Pittman carrying the full load now and gaining yards on catches if the run is not working. Aaron Stecker and Thomas Jones are rarely used anymore.

Pittman strained his left knee last week but is expected to play this week with no problems.

RT Cornell Green has a left ankle sprain that will make him questionable to play this week which makes the patchwork offensive line that much weaker.

Wide Receivers: After running mostly his mouth, Keyshawn Johnson finally turned in a big game last week, catching 10 passes for 124 yards though as usual Keenan McCardell (5-75) scored the touchdown for the wideouts. McCardell already has 580 yards receiving and five touchdowns on the season.

Joe Jurevicius will try to practice this week but is still questionable to play.

Tight Ends: Last week Ken Dilger and Todd Yoder only had one catch each against the Saints and are getting less use every week.

Match against the defense: The last time these two teams played - week two of this season - it ended up as a 12-9 Panther win when the Bucs could not keep an extra point or field goal from getting blocked. These matchups are always low scoring. Last season they split games 12-9 and 10-23.

Pittman only had 38 yards rushing in that game and his line is worse now.

Brad Johnson threw for 339 yards and one score (to McCardell of course) and Keyshawn Johnson had 102 yards on nine catches in week two. Chances are very good he will be throwing a lot this week as well.

Carolina Notes

The Panthers fall to 6-2 with their loss to Houston but still command a two game lead over Tampa Bay in the NFC South.

Quarterbacks: Jake Delhomme comes off a disappointing 13 of 23 for 193 yards effort with one touchdown and an interception against the Texans. While he managed 362 yards against the Titans in week six, he remains a sure bet for a sub-200 yard game each week.

Running backs: Stephen Davis carried 30 times for 153 yards last week and has absolutely feasted on bad defenses this season. That makes his sixth 100 yard game of the year.

Wide Receivers: Steve Smith has been a major surprise this season and again turned in a nice 88 yard effort with one touchdown last week. He has either a touchdown and/or 100 yards the past four weeks. Since Muhsin Muhammad continues to struggle with drops and getting open, there is little reason to expect anything to change soon here.

Tight Ends: No real impact lately. Mike Seidman has a sprained ankle but may play this week.

Match against the defense: S John Lynch is expected back this week after missing the last two games with nerve damage but S Jermaine Phillips broke his right forearm and S John Howell has a hamstring strain that will keep them out this week.

The Panthers only had 96 yards passing in their previous matchup but Stephen Davis had 33 carries for 142 yards in that game. With the injuries to the Bucs defense and Davis being healthy again, there is little reason to expect much more than another 30 carry day by Davis.

Team Comparisons - Current team rankings (1-32) for FF points scored or allowed by position
Rank (1-32)
QB
RB
WR
TE
PK
DEF
TB Scores
5
10
12
5
30
5
CAR Allows
15
4
15
20
14
8
TB AP
10
-6
-3
-15
-16
3
Rank (1-32)
QB
RB
WR
TE
PK
DEF
CAR Scores
27
3
23
24
7
19
TB Allows
6
17
17
5
4
17
CAR AP
-21
14
-6
-19
-3
-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.
TB
CAR
2003 Game Averages
CAR
TB
Gains
Allows
QB's
Gains
Allows
255
194
Pass yards
196
210
2.2
1.2
Pass TDs
0.8
1.0
1.2
0.7
Interceptions
0.3
1.7
6
12
Rush yards
2
9
0.0
0.2
Rush TDs
0.0
0.0
---
---
RB's
---
---
98
107
Rush yards
162
89
0.3
0.3
Rush TDs
0.8
0.8
63
20
Receive yards
39
38
0.3
0.0
Receive TD's
0.2
0.0
---
---
WR's
---
---
153
127
Receive yards
125
145
1.0
1.0
Receive TD's
0.7
1.0
---
---
TE's
---
---
39
47
Receive yards
32
28
0.7
0.2
Receive TD's
0.0
0.0
---
---
PK's
---
---
0.7
1.7
Field Goals
2.2
1.0
3.0
1.8
Extra Points
1.8
2.0
---
---
DEF/ST
---
---
0.8
1.2
Fumbles
0.5
1.0
1.8
0.3
Interceptions
0.7
1.0
0.2
0.2
Touchdowns
0.2
0.2
2.5
1.3
Sacks
2.3
1.5
0.0
0.0
Safeties
0.0
0.0
Buccaneers (4-4)
Score Opp.
17-0 @PHI
9-12 CAR
31-10 @ATL
Week 4 BYE
35-38 IND
35-13 @WAS
7-24 @SF
16-0 DAL
14-17 NO
Week 10 @CAR
Week 11 GB
Week 12 NYG
Week 13 @JAX
Week 14 @NO
Week 15 HOU
Week 16 ATL
Week 17 @TEN
Panthers (6-2)
Score Opp.
24-23 JAX
12-9 @TB
Week 3 BYE
23-3 ATL
19-13 NO
23-20 @IND
17-37 TEN
23-20 @NO
14-10 @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

* Fantasy point rankings calculated using standard Huddle fantasy points