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FANTASY FOOTBALL WEEKLY FEATURES

Predictions & Projections
David M. Dorey
The Huddle
WEEK 13
December 1, 2004
Season Ticket
Sun 1 PM Sun 1 PM Sun 1 PM Sun 4 PM Sun 8:30 PM
CIN at BAL* BUF at MIA ATL at TB* DEN at SD PIT at JAX
MIN at CHI TEN at IND* SF at STL* KC at OAK* Mon 9 PM
ARZ at DET CAR at NO   GB at PHI* DAL at SEA
NE at CLE HOU at NYJ *updated NYG at WAS Times ET
  Dallas Rush Catch Pass
QB V. Testaverde 0 0 240,1
RB Eddie George 10 10 0
RB Julius Jones 110,1 10 0
TE Jason Witten 0 50 0
WR Keyshawn Johnson 0 80,1 0
WR Terence Copper 0 30 0
WR Quincy Morgan 0 60 0
PK Bill Cundiff 1 FG 2 XP -
  Seattle Rush Catch Pass
QB Matt Hasselbeck 0 0 200,2
RB Shaun Alexander 120,1 30 0
TE Jerramy Stevens 0 10 0
WR Darrell Jackson 0 70,1 0
WR Bobby Engram 0 30 0
WR Jerry Rice 0 50,1 0
PK Josh Brown 1 FG 3 XP -

DAL (4-7) vs SEA (6-5)

Game Prediction: DAL 17, SEA 24

Dallas is just happy to finally have a victory and have spent the last 11 days preparing for this Monday night game. The Seahawks were sent reeling by the Bills last week in a whipping of historic proportions. They only have eight days to prepare and likely have spent the first several days wondering what the heck just happened last Sunday.

Pre-Game Notes - DAL

The Cowboys come off a much needed win on Thanksgiving, beating the Bears 21-7 and ending a three game losing streak. It was a mixed bag of blessings - the quarterback situation remains a problem but there's optimism about the running game for the first time this season. And of course, they won.

Quarterback: Drew Henson only lasted for one half of play before he was yanked. He only completed 4 of 12 passes for 31 yards with one interception that was returned for the only Chicago score in the game. Vinny Testaverde played the second half with a bad shoulder and completed 9 of 14 for 92 yards and one touchdown with one interception. Henson spent his time mainly trying to hit Terrence Copper and never once threw at team reception leader Jason Witten.

Testaverde will get the start this week. Henson looked like the proverbial "deer in the headlights" and was wildly inaccurate at times. He'll be back but not this week.

Running Backs: Julius Jones went from being listed as "out" to "doubtful" and finally to "questionable" in week 11 but went ahead to run 30 times for 81 yards against the Ravens. Last Thursday against the Bears, Jones ran 33 times for 150 yards and two scores - his first in the NFL. He showed burst and speed uncharacteristic of any Dallas tailback for... well... Tony Dorsett? While he did now show the inside running skills of Emmitt Smith, he had several very nice runs that normally ended up outside the hashmarks and scored his first touchdown on a 33 yard run.

Eddie George only had three carries for eight yards. It appears his time is ending with a whimper, not a bang.

Wide Receivers: Keyshawn Johnson led all receivers with six catches for 58 yards and was the only effective wideout in the game. Quincy Morgan only had two catches for 22 yards though one was a very impressive catch on the Chicago 4-yard line over R.W. McQuarter's head. The rookie Terrence Copper displayed great speed and was targeted several times but only ended with two catches for 22 yards like Morgan.

Henson kept throwing to Morgan and Cooper. Testaverde mainly hit Johnson and Witten. It was obvious which receivers were being preferred by the two quarterbacks.

Tight Ends: Jason Witten only ended with one catch for 17 yards and that did not happen late in the third quarter. He only had three passes in the entire game and primarily blocked.

Match Against the Defense: The Cowboys have a new running game with Julius Jones being fed the ball 30 times a game and the Seahawks have been soft against the run lately when teams commit with at least average talent. Expect a good game from Jones because of workload alone.

With Testaverde back as the starter, he should fall neatly into the range of 210 to 275 yards that each opposing quarterback has produced for the last seven games against the Seahawks. He'll likely only have one score but every quarterback gets at least that much.

The Seahawks have allowed only two tight ends to score and both were the on the Rams who don't use them often. Count on Witten only turning in a moderate game - anything more will be a first against the Seahawks.

There is no clear favorite side to score with the wideouts but Keyshawn gets the most passes. The score should end up with him or Morgan since only Henson has loved throwing to Copper.

Pre-Game Notes - SEA

Seattle has been an enigma this season. The Vaunted passing game of 2003 never has shown up this year and Shaun Alexander plus some decent defense has been the lone credits for the six wins which been exclusively to teams that are currently 4-7 or worse right now. They lost to the Cardinals and last week the Bills slapped them 38-9 to shatter whatever confidence the win over the Dolphins created. The Seahawks are only 6-5 and yet atop the NFC West.

Quarterback: If you disregard two games against the 49ers (and you always should), Matt Hasselbeck has only thrown seven total touchdowns in eight games played with 11 interceptions. Last week he threw 19 of 38 for 185 yards and one score with a lost fumble and interception. The previous full game was only 172 yards with no score. Hasselbeck is on the verge of being yanked and it would happen as much for losing his confidence as it would be for poor performance. He faces a very soft secondary this week - he needs to shine on the national stage of Monday night. A bad game here will have a disastrous effect on his season.

Running Backs: Shaun Alexander has been solid this season - 13 touchdowns and five 100+ yard games. But even he was pulled down to the level of the passing game last week when he only ran the ball 13 times for 39 yards and had no catches. With a struggling passing game, Alexander must lead the offense or the Seahawks folly of last week is not over.

Wide Receivers: Now that Koren Robinson is in exile for a month, the finger pointing goes to Darrell Jackson who continues to drop passes. The Seahawks actually lead the league in dropped passes this season. In the last three weeks, Jackson has not gained more than 45 yards in any game nor caught more than four passes.

Jerry Rice moved into Robinson's spot but that only turned into 24 yards last week. Bobby Engram had the lone touchdown against the Bills but only managed two catches for 19 yards. This passing game needs to come up big on Monday night or Shaun Alexander will face even more focus by the defense.

Tight Ends: No scores here for the last seven weeks and none on the horizon. Somewhat amazing considering the wideouts cannot hang on to passes.

Match Against the Defense: The Cowboys defense is nothing special when facing even an average offense but determining what will show up for Seattle is getting harder to do. The Dallas run defense seems at least average but mostly because opponents have preferred to take the easier route of passing. The most likely scenario would be Alexander netting at least 100 yards on the ground and scoring once. The Seahawks know that has to happen for anything else to work.

Hasselbeck is still feeling some effect from his badly bruised thigh but he faces a secondary that has allowed almost every opposing quarterback to throw for two scores - even Boller, Harrington and Roethlisberger. Expect that Hasselbeck does not have a major yardage game - they will be running a lot - but that he throws two scores and hopefully loses the glare from the Walrus.

Those two scores favor the wideouts and Rice in particular though they could end up with Jackson, Engram or even Urban just as easily.

DAL SEA 2004 Averages SEA DAL
Gains Allows QB's Gains Allows
235
240
Pass yards
223
226
1.3
1.2
Pass TDs
1.2
1.9
1.4
1.5
Interceptions
1.2
0.5
3
7
Rush yards
7
9
0.1
0.2
Rush TDs
0.0
0.1
---
---
RB's
---
---
94
96
Rush yards
129
101
0.7
0.8
Rush TDs
0.9
0.6
28
32
Receive yards
21
43
0.1
0.0
Receive TD's
0.3
0.2
---
---
WR's
---
---
144
166
Receive yards
164
151
0.5
1.0
Receive TD's
0.7
1.4
---
---
TE's
---
---
63
41
Receive yards
38
36
0.6
0.2
Receive TD's
0.2
0.5
---
---
PK's
---
---
0.9
1.6
Field Goals
1.7
1.5
2.1
2.1
Extra Points
2.2
3.0
---
---
DEF/ST
---
---
0.5
0.5
Fumbles
1.0
0.8
0.5
1.2
Interceptions
1.5
1.5
0.0
0.0
Touchdowns
0.3
0.4
2.2
1.8
Sacks
2.3
1.7
0.1
0.1
Safeties
0.0
0.0
Cowboys (4-7)
Score Opp.
17-35 @MIN
19-12 CLE
21-18 @WAS
Week 4 bye
10-26 NYG
20-24 PIT
20-41 @GB
31-21 DET
3-26 @CIN
21-49 PHI
10-30 @BAL
21-7 CHI
Week 13 @SEA
Week 14 NO
Week 15 @PHI
Week 16 WAS
Week 17 @NYG
Seahawks (6-5)
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
9-38 BUF
Week 13 DAL
Week 14 @MIN
Week 15 @NYJ
Week 16 ARI
Week 17 ATL