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Predictions & Projections
David M. Dorey
The Huddle
September 19, 2004
Season Ticket
Sun 1 PM Sun 1 PM Sun 1 PM Sun 4 PM Sun 8:30 PM
STL at ATL DEN at JAX* Sun 4 PM IND at TEN Mon 9 PM
CLE at DAL* CAR at KC* SEA at TB* NYJ at SD MIN at PHI*
HOU at DET SF at NO* BUF at OAK* Times ET *updated
  Seattle Rush Catch Pass
QB Matt Hasselbeck 0 0 200,2
RB Maurice Morris 60 20 0
TE Jerramy Stevens 0 30,1 0
WR Darrell Jackson 0 50 0
WR Bobby Engram 0 30,1 0
WR Koren Robinson 0 40 0
PK Josh Brown 3 FG 2 XP -
  Tampa Bay Rush Catch Pass
QB Brad Johnson 0 0 230,1
RB Charlie Garner 50 10 0
RB Mike Alstott 20 10 0
TE Dilger /Dudley 0 40 0
WR Michael Clayton 0 70,1 0
WR Bill Schroeder 0 30 0
WR Tim Brown 0 50 0
PK Martin Gramatica 3 FG 1 XP -

SEA (1-0) vs TB (0-1)

Game Prediction: SEA 23, TB 16

The Seahawks hit their second road game already and would like nothing more than to return home in week three with two wins. The Buccaneers defense played well last week other than the whole Portis thing while their offense just did not really play at all.

Pre-Game Notes - SEA

Seattle is feeling pretty good right now - starting out on the road with a victory in a game they looked good on both sides of the ball.

Quarterback: Matt Hasselbeck looked polished and poised against the Saints last week, throwing for 246 yards and one touchdown and completing 68% of his passes. He was never sacked and enjoyed good protection. With his weapons and ability, this is not a good thing for opponents.

Running Backs: Shaun Alexander had a great start to the season last week and rushed for 135 yards before scaring the Seahawks by grabbing his knee in the fourth quarter. He has a bone bruise with no cartilage damage and is considered "day-to-day" though I am assuming he will not play this weekend. No need to risk the season for one game and Maurice Morris has been a more than adequate backup anyway. Morris finally gets his first NFL start after two years in the league.

Update: Alexander has been looking better and HC Mike Holmgren is not ruling out the chance that Alexander plays. Knowing Holmgren, that could mean anything from Shaun sitting out the entire game as initially expected to giving him a significant role. Even if Alexander is active for the game that does not necessarily mean he will be given 25 carries. His bone bruise will not get worse with playing but will be painful for him to endure. Morris is one of the more capable back-ups in the league which makes the need to use Alexander even less. Playing in Tampa Bay is tougher than most though several backs exceeded 100 yards on the ground there last year.

What makes the situation worse is if the Seahawks use Alexander and then get a lead and let him rest. There's just several unknown aspects to this that may not be clear until the game is underway. Alexander is not ruled out and it does not appear that he will be - at least not early. You can check up the news or pre-game reports to see if Alexander is active or not but even that may not be definitive in what you can expect. I am lowering the numbers for Morris since there is obvious risk that he will not be a full-time starter and he could lose significant time to Alexander under the right conditions. This is a situation to avoid if possible - difficult to do since Alexander was undoubtedly your first draft pick.

I'll update again but only if I can gather verifiable, reliable information.

Wide Receivers: Pretty standard from last season. Hasselbeck threw mainly to Darrell Jackson (7-98), then at Koren Robinson (3-35) with Bobby Engram still doing more with less (3-55). Other than a few dump off passes, almost all the passes went to the wideouts.

Tight Ends: The Seahawks did not use the tight ends much last week since Jeremy Stevens couldn't hold on to his one pass and Itula Mili did. The tight ends should have a bigger role this week against a more aggressive defense in Tampa Bay.

Match Against the Defense: This is an interesting time for Morris to get the start - on the road to Tampa Bay. But these are the same Buccaneers that were gashed by Clinton Portis and Morris is more of a slasher than a power back anyway. He'll not have the same success as Portis but should turn in at least a moderate game.

Once again, Robinson has the better matchup to the secondary but he didn't do much with it last week. Chances are that he and Jackson will command enough attention that either Stevens or Engram will have a good game matched on the safety where the Bucs are the weakest.

Pre-Game Notes - TB

The Buccaneers still feature the same offense, but it certainly looked different last week. Last year Brad Johnson was throwing well and eventually Thomas Jones looked good on the ground. Now nothing looks effective. The 10-16 game score looks close only because the defense ran a fumble in for the only touchdown. Oddly enough only Tampa Bay and Baltimore have yet to score an actual offensive touchdown this season.

Quarterback: Brad Johnson only managed to gain 169 yards on 24 completions - that's only seven yards each catch. That's not even up to a tight level for most teams. Johnson also fumbled once and threw one interception. All the new players may have been a contributor and he'll have the same again this week with Galloway out.

Running Backs: Not to downplay what the Washington defense is like this season, but in a game where the Buccaneers actually led 10-9 in the third quarter, they still only ended the game with 30 yards on 15 carries by Mike Alstott and Charlie Garner. The longest gainer on the ground was only seven yards. Teams may win Super Bowls without a big rushing game but they all had at least something. The scheme only completed one pass to Garner and three to Alstott. There's problems down by the bay.

Wide Receivers: As noted, Joey Galloway injured his groin and will be out at least four to six weeks. He will not need surgery. The only bright spot on the entire offense was the play of rookie Michael Clayton (7-53). With Galloway out, Clayton will continue to pair with Tim Brown while Charles Lee and Bill Schroeder sort out who will be the #3.

If the offense is going to be so sluggish, the #3 spot may mean something this year.

Tight Ends: As always, the Bucs are using tight ends in incalculable ways this year. both Ken Dilger (3-12) and Ricky Dudley (2-31) figured in and did not really matter.

Match Against the Defense: After only one game, there is no real weakness coming out of the Seattle defense though at home the Bucs are bound to be better. At least theoretically.

If Deuce McAllister cannot gain much, there's little chance that Garner or Alstott will produce any fantasy relevant numbers this week. The only player with success last week was Joe Horn in the flanker spot. Over in Tampa Bay, that means Tim Brown and that means walk away, brother. Walk away.

SEA TB 2003 Averages TB SEA
Gains Allows QB's Gains Allows
246 125 Pass yards 169 223
1 0 Pass TDs 0 1
1 0 Interceptions 1 1
-1 1 Rush yards 0 16
0 0 Rush TDs 0 0
--- --- RB's --- ---
170 165 Rush yards 30 57
2 1 Rush TDs 0 0
43 21 Receive yards 24 32
1 0 Receive TD's 0 0
--- --- WR's --- ---
188 88 Receive yards 102 146
0 0 Receive TD's 0 0
--- --- TE's --- ---
15 16 Receive yards 43 45
0 0 Receive TD's 0 1
--- --- PK's --- ---
0 3 Field Goals 1 0
3 1 Extra Points 1 1
--- --- DEF/ST --- ---
2 1 Fumbles 1 1
1 1 Interceptions 0 1
0 0 Touchdowns 1 0
2 4 Sacks 0 0
0 0 Safeties 0 0
Seahawks (1-0)
Score Opp.
21-7 @NO
Week 2 @TB
Week 3 SF
Week 4 bye
Week 5 STL
Week 6 @NE
Week 7 @ARI
Week 8 CAR
Week 9 @SF
Week 10 @STL
Week 11 MIA
Week 12 BUF
Week 13 DAL
Week 14 @MIN
Week 15 @NYJ
Week 16 ARI
Week 17 ATL
Buccaneers (0-1)
Score Opp.
10-16 @WAS
Week 2 SEA
Week 3 @OAK
Week 4 DEN
Week 5 @NO
Week 6 @STL
Week 7 CHI
Week 8 bye
Week 9 KC
Week 10 @ATL
Week 11 SF
Week 12 @CAR
Week 13 ATL
Week 14 @SD
Week 15 NO
Week 16 CAR
Week 17 @ARI

* Fantasy point rankings calculated using standard Huddle fantasy points