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FANTASY FOOTBALL WEEKLY FEATURES

Predictions & Projections
David M. Dorey
The Huddle
WEEK 10
November 10, 2004
Season Ticket
Sun 1 PM Sun 1 PM Sun 4 PM Sun 8:30 PM Mon 9 PM
PIT at CLE* BAL at NYJ CIN at WAS BUF at NE* PHI at DAL*
TB at ATL* KC at NO* NYG at ARZ Bye Week: Bye Week:
DET at JAX* CHI at TEN* CAR at SF DEN MIA
HOU at IND SEA at STL MIN at GB* OAK SD
  Chicago Rush Catch Pass
QB Craig Krenzel 0 0 160,1
RB Anthony Thomas 90,1 20 0
TE Desmond Clark 0 10 0
WR Justin Gage 0 30 0
WR Bernard Berrian 0 30 0
WR Bobby Wade 0 30,1 0
WR David Terrell 0 30 0
PK Paul Edinger 1 FG 2 XP -
  Tennessee Rush Catch Pass
QB Steve McNair 0 0 220,1
QB Billy Volek 0 0 200,1
RB Chris Brown 110,1 20 0
TE Erron Kinney 0 20 0
WR Derrick Mason 0 60,1 0
WR Eddie Berlin 0 20 0
WR Drew Bennett 0 30 0
PK Gary Anderson 2 FG 2 XP -

CHI (3-5) vs TEN (3-5)

Game Prediction: CHI 17, TEN 20

Here's another messy game. The Bears suddenly look like a decent team (if you only look at very specific things - not overall, mind you) and the Titans have wavered between great and terrible with more time spent on the bad side. This is the fifth time the Titans play at home and they are still looking for their second Nashville win.

Update: It appears most likely that Anthony Thomas will start again this week but Thomas Jones is back to practice and there is still at least some optimism that he will play. Make sure that Jones is not a sudden active for the game on Sunday before relying on Thomas.

Steve McNair also is unlikely to play though he has not been ruled out. I am projecting for Volek now since he is the more likely starter but with McNair - you can never be sure. Another game time decision.

Chris Brown is not practicing but is expected to start. I am not changing his numbers though he is listed as questionable.

Pre-Game Notes - CHI

The Bears are on a two game winning streak and just whooped the Giants in New York in one of the biggest upsets last week. The rookie Craig Krenzel is undefeated but before anyone pulls him up on stage with Ben Roethlisberger, realize he was mostly just there while they won, less of an active participant. The Bears have lost Thomas Jones but they have not lost the good sense to stand back and watch when opponents self-destruct.

Quarterback: While Craig Krenzel is 2-0 on the season, that mark came about with two games that had one touchdown and two turnovers in each. And he never passed for more than 168 yards. Last week he only completed eight of 21 passes. Oh yeah, here's "Big Ben II". He was sacked five times in each of his starts. On the season, he's getting sacked about once every six passes.

Running Backs: With Thomas Jones out, Anthony Thomas has grabbed the torch and he is still running. He has 208 rushing yards and two scores in the last two weeks and carries the ball at least 25 times a game. He's pretty much been the same as Thomas Jones but when the run is the only aspect of the offense that works well, it helps the team when there is no drop-off.

I assume Jones is still out and that Thomas again starts this week. Updates if warranted.

Wide Receivers: David Terrell comes off a monster game (relatively speaking) when he had 70 yards on four catches against the Giants last week. If you start him, chances are you will get something more like his previous two games (total of one catch for 14 yards).

Oddly the only thing that has worked in the passing game for the Bears is the rookie Bernard Berrian who has one catch in each of the past four games and has scored in each of the last two. With two consecutive touchdowns now, someone in the country will pick him up as a free agent and play him, thereby almost guaranteeing that he never scores again.

Tight Ends: Nice blocking last week. No catches. Never any touchdowns. "Desmond Clark". Now just forget the name.

Match Against the Defense: The great news is that the Titans rush defense has allowed almost every opponent to score one rushing touchdown. If the opponent is committed to the run, and the Bears certainly are, they give up at least moderate to very good fantasy points. Anthony Thomas is a must start this week.

Krenzel will likely manage that one scoring pass again this week against a secondary that always allows one. He may crest the elusive 170 yard mark for passing but not by much.

Pre-Game Notes - TEN

The Titans pulled off a 27-20 win over the visiting Bengals before heading off to their week 9 bye but the defensive problems have not gone away. Every opponent has scored at least 20 points this season other than the Jaguars (during their low points span early in the season) and the Dolphins in week one. This offense has not been nearly good enough to keep up in games when rushing Chris Brown is not enough.

Quarterback: The bye week should have given Steve McNair some much needed rest and recovery time and he is expected to play this weekend against the Bears. He may not be able to practice fully during the week but until more practice information is available, I am assuming that McNair will play without significant limitation.

Running Backs: Chris Brown suffered a turf toe but played wonderfully through the pain against the Bengals, racking up 147 yards and a score in a game that he was not even a lock to play, let alone for the entire game. That makes five 100+ yard games this season for Brown and the time off last week will help his toe. Brown will likely be limited again this week in practice but is expected to play.

Wide Receivers: Not unlike many teams, there is only one wideout with fantasy significance this season for the Titans. Derrick Mason has been consistently around 80 or more yards a game though he only has two scores on the year. Drew Bennett had one good showing in week four and little else. Eddie Berlin had a score in week five and then only 50 yards as a best this season.

Tight Ends: Erron Kinney has not played since week three with a calf injury but is expected back this week. Ben Troupe has been slowly improving and had 57 yards on six catches against the Vikings but still has not scored. Shad Meier scored in week four, missed three games and then returned to score in week eight. What this now means is that there are three valid options as receivers for Titan tight ends and Kinney is not likely to return as such a dominant primary receiver.

Kinney should be back and will help out both the passing and running game.

Match Against the Defense: There is no doubt that Chris Brown will play and should turn in a solid game here. His best games are usually at home and he's had two weeks to get better. The Bears have allowed great games to opposing runners in each of the past five games and while they were tough to score on, Barber just had two touchdowns last week.

McNair faces an above average secondary and he's been hurt much of the season so matching up the defense is harder with more unknowns. The Bears have allowed more than one touchdown passing only once this season and the Titans have hardly been a passing machine anyway.

If there is a passing score, it certainly favors Mason by matchup and that also reflects the preference of McNair anyway. The Bears have been dinged by several tight ends this season but Kinney is just now coming back from injury and if a pass goes to the position, it could just as easily be to Shad Meier or Ben Troupe.

CHI TEN 2004 Averages TEN CHI
Gains Allows QB's Gains Allows
164
237
Pass yards
198
201
0.5
1.5
Pass TDs
1
1
0.8
1
Interceptions
1.3
1
14
3
Rush yards
15
7
0.1
0
Rush TDs
0.1
0.1
---
---
RB's
---
---
96
103
Rush yards
116
118
0.9
1
Rush TDs
0.8
0.4
39
24
Receive yards
34
55
0.3
0
Receive TD's
0.3
0
---
---
WR's
---
---
103
177
Receive yards
142
128
0.3
0.6
Receive TD's
0.5
0.9
---
---
TE's
---
---
22
35
Receive yards
27
18
0
0.9
Receive TD's
0.4
0.1
---
---
PK's
---
---
1.3
1.3
Field Goals
1.5
1.9
1.5
2.5
Extra Points
2
1.6
---
---
DEF/ST
---
---
1.1
0.4
Fumbles
0.9
1.3
1
1.3
Interceptions
1
0.8
0.4
0.1
Touchdowns
0.1
0.3
2.3
2
Sacks
2
3.5
0.1
0
Safeties
0
0
Bears (3-5)
Score Opp.
16-20 DET
21-10 @GB
22-27 @MIN
9-19 PHI
Week 5 bye
10-13 WAS
7-19 @TB
23-13 SF
28-21 @NYG
Week 10 @TEN
Week 11 IND
Week 12 @DAL
Week 13 MIN
Week 14 @JAX
Week 15 HOU
Week 16 @DET
Week 17 GB
Tennessee (3-5)
Score Opp.
17-7 @MIA
17-31 IND
12-15 JAX
17-38 @SD
48-27 @GB
10-20 HOU
3-20 @MIN
27-20 CIN
Week 9 bye
Week 10 CHI
Week 11 @JAX
Week 12 @HOU
Week 13 @IND
Week 14 KC
Week 15 @OAK
Week 16 DEN
Week 17 DET