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FANTASY FOOTBALL WEEKLY FEATURES

Predictions & Projections
David M. Dorey
The Huddle
WEEK 11
November 17, 2004
Season Ticket
Sun 1 PM Sun 1 PM Sun 1 PM Sun 4 PM Sun 8:30 PM
DAL at BAL NYJ at CLE* DEN at NO* SD at OAK* GB at HOU
STL at BUF PIT at CIN SF at TB* ATL at NYG Mon 9 PM
ARZ at CAR* DET at MIN* Sun 4 PM WAS at PHI NE at KC
IND at CHI* TEN at JAX* MIA at SEA* *updated Times ET
  Green Bay Rush Catch Pass
QB Brett Favre 0 0 250,3
RB Ahman Green 90,1 20 0
RB Tony Fisher 20 30 0
TE Bubba Franks 0 20,1 0
WR Javon Walker 0 110,2 0
WR Donald Driver 0 50 0
WR Antonio Chatman 0 20 0
PK Ryan Longwell 1 FG 4 XP -
  Houston Rush Catch Pass
QB David Carr 0 0 240,2
RB Domanick Davis 80,1 40 0
TE Miller/Bruener 0 10 0
WR Corey Bradford 0 20 0
WR Andre Johnson 0 100,1 0
WR Jabar Gaffney 0 60,1 0
PK Kris Brown 2 FG 3 XP -

GB (5-4) vs HOU (4-5)

Game Prediction: GB 31, HOU 27

Here's another game pitting two teams going in different directions. The Texans started the season with some surprising wins and a passing game that looked great. Now they're running when they should be throwing and have lost the last two games. The Packers were 1-4 on the season with nothing working, but have won their last four games with an offense that has not scored less than 27 points in the last month.

Pre-Game Notes - GB

The Packers were a huge disappointment with their initial losing streak but have turned it around and are back to scoring obscene totals. With a defense that is below average, that's just the ticket the Packers need to take the NFC North.

Quarterback: Brett Favre has been solid since week four, scoring a total of 18 touchdowns already this season and throwing for at least 236 yards in each of his past five games. His four touchdown effort last week was his second game with plenty of scores to distribute and he has thrown at least one score in every game this year.

Running Backs: Ahman Green was held out of the endzone last week but he still gained 145 yards on 21 carries and has topped 140 total yards in each of the last three games. With Najeh Davenport out yet again, Tony Fisher had eight carries for 41 yards last week and scored once on a pass as did William Henderson. Green is back to his high yardage ways but still has only six scores on the season - four in the past three games.

Davenport is getting an MRI this week because of his hamstring strain that forced him from the game last week. Until he is healthy again, and that seems to be an impossible chore this year, Tony Fisher will continue as the primary back-up.

Wide Receivers: Javon Walker now has eight touchdowns on the season and has scored in six of the last seven games. He's become Favre's favorite target on the deep routes and though he rarely has more than four or five catches, he still has four 100 yard games this year and never has failed to reach at least 60 yards or a score since week one. Walker has developed into one of the most consistent receivers for scoring in the league.

Donald Driver has cooled down the last couple of games and only totaled 68 yards and five catches. He's given the possession role over to the running backs lately. Robert Ferguson continues to be hampered by various injuries and has exactly one catch in each of the last six games.

Tight Ends: Even though Favre is spreading the ball around, the tight ends have become invisible in the offense. Bubba Franks has scored in three of the last five games including last week but never has more than a couple of catches and no yardage.

Match Against the Defense: Good news for the Green and Gold. The Texans have been pretty good at preventing rushing scores this year but still have allowed runners to top 100 yards in half their games so far. The main reason that opponents have not scored on the ground is because it has just been much easier to pass for a score. The Houston secondary has allowed nine passing touchdowns in only the last two games.

Expect Favre to have a solid game here, likely not major yardage but with multiple scores which fits both his and the Texans defense recent past. The biggest challenge is determining which player gets the scores. Javon Walker should be a lock for one and yet any of the others could as well, including Franks since they've allowed three tight end scores in the last two games.

Pre-Game Notes - HOU

The Texans have seen their first back-to-back wins this season and now are reverting back to the two factors that have historically killed them - an offense that cannot score and a defense that stops no one.

Quarterback: David Carr started the season on a hot streak but has cooled dramatically the last few weeks. He only had 215 yards against the Colts - the Indianapolis COLTS. He threw for three interceptions and no scores. The previous week he also had no scores and 245 yards against the Broncos. Either the opponents have figured out the passing game this season or something has changed because Carr is clearly not as effective as he was earlier this year.

He's barely managing to complete 50% of his passes lately while the running game is being used more heavily in spite of big deficits on the scoreboard.

Running Backs: Domanick Davis has enjoyed a resurgence the last two weeks, scoring twice in each game and gaining 152 total yards last week in Indianapolis. He had an astounding 31 carries against the Colts and the Texans appear to be going back to what didn't work last year - running Davis to the exclusion of the passing game. With Davis already banged up earlier this season, running him 31 times in a game will not last.

Wide Receivers: Andre Johnson had a great start to the season but has really cooled in the past month. He has not scored since week five and has not gained more than 74 yards during that time span. He still gets at least eight throws a game but is not seeing the same success as before. This is compounded in part to getting no help from Corey Bradford and Jabar Gaffney has actually been the most productive wideout over the last month but even he has only one touchdown in that time.

This passing game has gone south and the Houston record will continue to head downward until they figure out how to return to involving Andre Johnson again.

Tight Ends: When Davis carries 31 times, you know that the tight ends are only blockers. Zero fantasy impact.

Match Against the Defense: This will be the week that the Texans should generate some offense again. The Packers have improved lately against the run but mainly at the expense of the pass. Every quarterback throws at least one score against the Packers this season and half of them have more than one.

Domanick Davis should be successful this week because even if he doesn't get the rushing yardage, he'll still get some receptions that should count. The Packers have already allowed six running backs to score via the pass this year. Look for Andre Johnson to shake off the funk and do something this week because this will be the one of the softest secondaries that he will face for the rest of the season.

The Packers have been soft against tight ends as well, but they are never used in Houston. Expect that Carr throws for at least two scores, even if most of his production comes later in the game during trash time.

GB HOU 2004 Averages HOU GB
Gains Allows QB's Gains Allows
272
251
Pass yards
264
244
2.1
2.6
Pass TDs
1.0
2.1
1.2
1.4
Interceptions
0.9
0.7
3
9
Rush yards
18
11
0.0
0.0
Rush TDs
0.0
0.0
---
---
RB's
---
---
122
99
Rush yards
83
94
0.8
0.3
Rush TDs
1.0
0.8
57
32
Receive yards
47
40
0.4
0.2
Receive TD's
0.0
0.7
---
---
WR's
---
---
191
160
Receive yards
202
159
1.4
1.8
Receive TD's
1.0
1.2
---
---
TE's
---
---
28
59
Receive yards
14
48
0.3
0.3
Receive TD's
0.0
0.2
---
---
PK's
---
---
1.3
0.8
Field Goals
1.4
0.9
3.1
3.1
Extra Points
2.0
3.1
---
---
DEF/ST
---
---
0.2
1.0
Fumbles
0.2
1.0
0.7
0.9
Interceptions
1.4
1.2
0.1
0.3
Touchdowns
0.3
0.1
2.0
2.9
Sacks
1.6
0.6
0.0
0.0
Safeties
0.0
0.0
Packers (5-4)
Score Opp.
24-14 @CAR
10-21 CHI
31-45 @IND
7-14 NYG
27-48 TEN
38-10 @DET
41-20 DAL
28-14 @WAS
Week 9 bye
34-31 MIN
Week 11 @HOU
Week 12 STL
Week 13 @PHI
Week 14 DET
Week 15 JAX
Week 16 @MIN
Week 17 @CHI
Texans (4-5)
Score Opp.
20-27 SD
16-28 @DET
24-21 @KC
30-17 OAK
28-34 MIN
20-10 @TEN
Week 7 bye
20-6 JAX
13-31 @DEN
14-49 @IND
Week 11 GB
Week 12 TEN
Week 13 @NYJ
Week 14 IND
Week 15 @CHI
Week 16 @JAX
Week 17 CLE