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FANTASY FOOTBALL WEEKLY FEATURES

Predictions & Projections
David M. Dorey
The Huddle
WEEK 12
November 24, 2004
Season Ticket
Thu 12:30 Sun 1 PM Sun 1 PM Sun 4 PM Sun 8:30 PM
IND at DET CLE at CIN* BAL at NE NYJ at ARZ* OAK at DEN*
Thu 4:05 TB at CAR JAX at MIN* NO at ATL Mon 9 PM
CHI at DAL SD at KC PHI at NYG BUF at SEA* STL at GB*
*updated TEN at HOU* WAS at PIT* MIA at SF Times ET
  Buffalo Rush Catch Pass
QB Drew Bledsoe 0 0 180,1
RB Willis McGahee 50 10 0
TE M. Campbell 0 20 0
WR Eric Moulds 0 60 0
WR Sam Aiken 0 30 0
WR Lee Evans 0 50,1 0
PK Rian Lindell 1 FG 1 XP -
  Seattle Rush Catch Pass
QB Matt Hasselbeck 0 0 190,1
RB Shaun Alexander 100,1 20 0
TE Mili / Stevens 0 30 0
WR Darrell Jackson 0 50,1 0
WR Bobby Engram 0 30 0
WR Jerry Rice 0 40 0
PK Josh Brown 1 FG 2 XP -

BUF (4-6) vs SEA (6-4)

Game Prediction: BUF 10, SEA 17

While both teams are still searching for a true identity 12 weeks into the season, the reality is that whatever they truly are will be a disappointment to fans and owners alike.

Update: Hasselbeck is not 100% but appears likely to play this week. I am leaving his initial projections alone as he practiced on Thursday. Darell Jackson has missed practice this week to rest his sprained ankle but is expected to participate and I am not changing his projections.

Pre-Game Notes - BUF

The Bills come off their best game of the year in beating the visiting Rams 37-17. That makes them 4-2 at home, The problem is that they are 0-4 on the road and have to face one team that is only consistent when they are at home. By a scheduling quick, Buffalo has only played four road games in the first 11 weeks of the season.

Quarterback: Drew Bledsoe can breath a sigh of relief knowing that his job is safe for at least one week after throwing for three scores against the Rams - his first triple score day in two years. he completed a respectable 15 of 24 passes for 185 yards. Now he heads out onto the road where in four games he has three scores against eleven turnovers.

Running Backs: Willis McGahee turned in his third 100 yard game in four weeks when he rushed 20 times for an even 100 yards against the Rams. The only time in the last six weeks that he has not had a great game is when he gained only 37 yards on 14 carries in New England and 58 yards on 16 carries in Baltimore... during his only road games in that stretch.

Wide Receivers: Bledsoe had a great game last week but it benefited no wideout. Sam Aiken had the most yardage with 61 yards on only two catches and Eric Moulds only had 17 yards on three catches - his worst game of the year. Lee Evans only had 38 yards on two carries. Since week five, there have been only two wideout touchdowns - one each for Moulds and Evans and the greater use of McGahee has only served to drive meager passing numbers even lower.

Josh Reed missed last week with a hyper-extended knee and I'll assume he'll be out this week as well. Updates if warranted.

Tight Ends: Mark Campbell had a career best three touchdowns last week on only four catches for 37 yards. It was not merely good, it was "Twilight Zone" good. He only had one score all last season but had two earlier this year. His five scores this season equal the combined totals of his previous five years in the NFL.

Match Against the Defense: Seattle is one of those hot and cold teams depending on if they are at home or on the road. This fits neatly into the exact same mold for the Bills. Seattle has not allowed more than 64 yards to any running back in Seattle this season and there have been no rushing scored by a runner as well. Chalk up McGahee for a moderate to lower output this week.

The Seattle secondary has been much worse this season and even at home they have allowed over one passing score per opponent with a high of three scores to the Rams. But that presupposes that the opponent likes to throw the ball which the Bills clearly have not this year.

Bledsoe has a great shot at cresting 200 yards but more than that is not realistic for what the Bills offense has been capable of doing. The passing score is most likely to go to Lee Evans but the passing is so meager that Moulds is as likely a candidate.

Pre-Game Notes - SEA

The Seahawks pulled a squeaker over the visiting Dolphins last week when Michael Boulware returned an interception for a score with only 56 seconds left to play. The team with the most promise for 2004 is now 6-4 and providing some of the most inconsistent play in the NFL outside of Shaun Alexander. The loss of Koren Robinson for the next month may not end up as a huge difference, but Hasselbeck's injury will continue to throw even more questions into the mix.

Quarterback: Trent Dilfer had to take the start last week when Hasselbeck was a game time scratch due to a very deep muscle bruise to his plant leg. Dilfer threw for 196 yards, one score and two interceptions - about the same as what the erratic Hasselbeck had been doing.

I am assuming that Hasselbeck returns this week and will update if needed.

Running Backs: Shaun Alexander is the only thing keeping the Seahawks from complete obscurity. He has thirteen touchdowns on the season and five 100 yard rushing games including four over 150 yards. He has multiple scores in four games as well.

Wide Receivers: Koren Robinson is finally gone from the picture for the next month and Jerry Rice will replace him. Rice had his first touchdown of the season against the Dolphins on a 21-yard slant and ended with 86 yards on three catches to lead all receivers. Darrell Jackson has received all the double teams the last two weeks and only had three catches for less than 40 yards in both games. This once high powered passing attack has almost disappeared this season and of the 12 passing scores, five were during the two games against the 49ers.

Tight Ends: Itula Mili has replaced Jeremy Stevens as the starting tight end but that only meant four catches for 24 yards last week. There has only been two passing scores to the tight ends all year.

Match Against the Defense: The only two factors in favor of the Seahawks are that they still have Shaun Alexander and they face the Bills who have been winless on the road this season.

The problem is that Buffalo has only allowed three rushing scores this entire season and only once against the Patriots have they allowed a runner to rush for more than 89 yards. There is no doubt that Alexander will have a moderate game since he'll get the needed volume to ensure it but if he scores and crests 100 yards it will be a major success against this defense.

With a diminished set of receivers and a bum leg, Hasselbeck faces one of the toughest defenses against the pass in the league. There should be one passing score but anything more than that would also spell a major success.

This is shaping up to be a defensive battle with a low score. There is nothing to suggest otherwise.

BUF SEA 2004 Averages SEA BUF
Gains Allows QB's Gains Allows
174
235
Pass yards
227
201
1.2
1.2
Pass TDs
1.2
1.3
1.2
1.4
Interceptions
1.2
0.9
3
8
Rush yards
7
7
0.0
0.2
Rush TDs
0.0
0.0
---
---
RB's
---
---
99
93
Rush yards
137
93
0.3
0.5
Rush TDs
1.0
0.3
23
29
Receive yards
21
21
0.0
0.0
Receive TD's
0.3
0.0
---
---
WR's
---
---
133
165
Receive yards
169
152
0.5
1.0
Receive TD's
0.7
1.0
---
---
TE's
---
---
22
40
Receive yards
37
27
0.6
0.2
Receive TD's
0.2
0.2
---
---
PK's
---
---
1.3
1.7
Field Goals
1.8
1.9
1.9
1.8
Extra Points
2.4
1.8
---
---
DEF/ST
---
---
0.5
0.4
Fumbles
1.1
0.5
0.9
1.2
Interceptions
1.4
1.2
0.5
0.0
Touchdowns
0.3
0.2
2.7
1.8
Sacks
2.4
2.8
0.1
0.1
Safeties
0.0
0.0
Bills (4-6)
Score Opp.
10-13 JAX
10-13 @OAK
Week 3 bye
17-31 NE
14-16 @NYJ
20-13 MIA
6-20 @BAL
38-14 ARI
22-17 NYJ
6-29 @NE
37-17 STL
Week 12 @SEA
Week 13 @MIA
Week 14 CLE
Week 15 @CIN
Week 16 @SF
Week 17 PIT
Seahawks (6-4)
Score Opp.
21-7 @NO
10-6 @TB
34-0 SF
Week 4 bye
27-33 STL
20-30 @NE
17-25 @ARI
23-17 CAR
42-27 @SF
12-23 @STL
24-17 MIA
Week 12 BUF
Week 13 DAL
Week 14 @MIN
Week 15 @NYJ
Week 16 ARI
Week 17 ATL