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Predictions & Projections
David Dorey
The Huddle
December 7, 2005
Season Ticket
Sun 1 PM Sun 1 PM Sun 4 PM Sun 4 PM Sun 8:30 PM
CLE at CIN* OAK at NYJ SF at SEA MIA at SD* Mon 9 PM
IND at JAC TB at CAR BAL at DEN Updated* Times ET

Prediction: Indianapolis 27, Jacksonville 10

One of the more interesting games of the weekend, here is another land mine that the Colts have to get past to reach their perfect season and the Colts only won 10-3 when these teams met in week two in Indy this season. But the Jags will be without Byron Leftwich this time around and the Colts defense has been playing just as well as the offense lately.

Indianapolis Colts (12-0)
1 24-7 @BAL 10 31-17 HOU
2 10-3 JAC 11 45-37 @CIN
3 13-6 CLE 12 26-7 PIT
4 31-10 @TEN 13 35-3 TEN
5 28-3 @SFO 14 Dec 11 @JAC
6 45-28 STL 15 Dec 18 SDC
7 38-20 @HOU 16 Dec 24 @SEA
8 Open Bye 17 Jan 1 ARI
9 40-21 @NE . MON SAT
IND at JAX Rush Catch Pass
QB Peyton Manning 0 0 250,2
RB Edgerrin James 100,1 10 0
TE Dallas Clark 0 20 0
WR Marvin Harrison 0 80,1 0
WR Reggie Wayne 0 60 0
WR Brandon Stokley 0 60,1 0
PK Mike Vanderjagt 2 FG 3 XP -
Pregame Notes: We'll see how lucky or unlucky "13" is for the Colts. The team is cruising along nicely though and has only allowed ten points in the last two games combined while scoring 61 points that could have been much more had the offense started working on the scoreboard instead of the clock the last couple of games.

Quarterback: Peyton Manning only threw for 122 yards and no scores in the first meeting with the Jaguars this season. That seems rather incredible now. He has not thrown for less than two scores in the last seven games.

Running Backs: Edgerrin James gained 128 yards on the ground and had 39 yards receiving against the Jags this year but never scored. He has since scored in every game other than the Steelers match-up when he just ran for 124 yards.

Wide Receivers: Marvin Harrison has scored in six of the last seven games and has four 100+ yard efforts this year. Reggie Wayne has been scoring exactly every other week since the third game of the season and he has two 100+ yard games. Hard to imagine that Harrison only had 36 yards while Wayne settled for a mere 19 yards in the previous match-up with the Jaguars this year.

Tight Ends: When Marcus Pollard left in the spring, it left only Dallas Clark as a veteran tight end. Instead of making a star of Clark, the Colts just brought up Bryan Fletcher who has improved this year and now has scored in each of the last three games. Clark only had one catch for four yards against the Jags in week two.

Match Against the Defense: The Colts were getting used to a different style of playing earlier this year when they only managed 10 points in the previous game but everything is working in top form now and it's safe to expect that James gets his 100 yards and a score because he does that every week.

Manning goes against a secondary that has allowed each of the last three opponents to throw for two scores and McNair, Warner and Frye are not exactly as good as Manning. Look for another solid effort here from Manning with at least two passing scores and moderate yardage. The Jaguars secondary has been getting burned for scores by slot receivers often this year so Stokley may end up with a score.

Jacksonville Jaguars (9-3)
1 26-14 SEA 10 30-3 BAL
2 3-10 @IND 11 31-28 @TEN
3 26-20 @NYJ 12 24-17 @ARI
4 7-20 DEN 13 20-14 @CLE
5 23-20 CIN 14 Dec 11 IND
6 23-17 @PIT 15 Dec 18 SFO
7 Open Bye 16 Dec 24 @HOU
8 21-24 @STL 17 Jan 1 TEN
9 21-14 HOU . . SAT
JAX vs IND Rush Catch Pass
QB David Garrard 50,1 0 120
RB Fred Taylor 70 10 0
TE Kyle Brady 0 10 0
WR Jimmy Smith 0 50 0
WR Ernest Wilford 0 30 0
WR Matt Jones 0 10 0
PK Josh Scobee 1 FG 1 XP -

Pregame Notes: The Jaguars are 9-3 which would lead any other division in the NFL other than the NFC West but being grouped with the Colts this year is no blessing. David Garrard has been good enough to secure wins the last two weeks and they were on the road but they were also against the Cardinals and Browns. This week will be an entirely different game for Garrard. The good news here is that after this match-up, the Jags finish the season with SF, HOU and TEN. Imagine - ending up 12-4 and playing on the road as a wildcard.

Quarterback: David Garrard the passer has only managed bookend games of 115 and 116 yards as a starter though he had two scores last week. Garrard the runner has scored once and had games of 61 and 26 yards. Look for more of the runner than the passer this week.

Leftwich only had 198 yards and no score against the Colts in week two.

Running Backs: Fred Taylor's mini-vacation is likely over this week in a game they will need him to play. In his absence Greg Jones has run very well against relatively weak opponents but Taylor ran for 81 yards on 16 carries against the Colts this year. The Jags need him this week. They may not need him again for the rest of the regular season but this is the game they have been saving him for the last couple of weeks.

Wide Receivers: Jimmy Smith has been getting more passes with Garrard than he ever had from Leftwich this year and has one score to show for it in the last two games. With only 115 or so passing yards, Smith takes the lion's share of a small meal. Matt Jones has completely disappeared with Garrard and only has one catch for seven yards in two games. Ernest Wilford now is getting around 30 yards per game and has lost almost all fantasy value.

Jimmy Smith led all receivers with only 49 yards in the previous game with the Colts in week two.

Tight Ends: Garrard did not use tight ends at all in week 12 but did score once with George Wrighster last week. But there were only three completions to all tight ends against the Browns and only 26 total yards.

Match Against the Defense: Taylor ran for 81 yards in the previous match-up but that was one of the best efforts against the Colts this year. Expect that to be the high side of what Taylor will do against this defense that will focus even more on him with Garrard playing.

Garrard could have some decent rushing yards here since running quarterbacks have seen some minor success running but the passing game already has been poor and will not improve against this secondary.