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FANTASY FOOTBALL WEEKLY FEATURES

Predictions & Projections
David Dorey
The Huddle
WEEK 17
December 28, , 2005
Season Ticket
Sat 4:30 PM Sun 1 PM Sun 1 PM Sun 1 PM SEA at GB*
DEN at SD* ARI at IND CHI at MIN* NO at TB WAS at PHI*
Sat 8 PM BAL at CLE CIN at KC Sun 4 PM Sun 8:30 PM
NYG at OAK* BUF at NYJ* DET at PIT* HOU at SF* STL at DAL
Updated* CAR at ATL MIA at NE TEN at JAC* Times ET

Prediction: NY Giants 23, Oakland 13

The Raiders are on a five game losing streak and the Giants need this win to secure the NFC East. Oakland couldn't play spoiler against the Browns two weeks ago so it is even less likely this week. This is when the Raiders get to finish the season and tell each other "see you next year... maybe".

Update: Jeremy Shockey is still bothered by his sprained ankle and missed practice on Wednesday and Thursday. It is looking more likely that he will miss this game or at least be very limited. I am dropping his projections and realize that he may not even play.

New York Giants (10-5)
1 42-19 ARI 10 21-24 MIN
2 27-10 @NOR 11 27-17 PHI
3 23-45 @SDC 12 21-24 @SEA
4 44-24 STL 13 17-10 DAL
5 Open Bye 14 26-23 @PHI
6 13-16 @DAL 15 27-17 KCC
7 24-23 DEN 16 20-35 @WAS
8 36-0 WAS 17 Dec 31 @OAK
9 24-6 @SFO . . SAT
NYG at OAK Rush Catch Pass
QB Eli Manning 0 0 220,1
RB Tiki Barber 80,1 10 0
TE Jeremy Shockey 0 20 0
WR Amani Toomer 0 80,1 0
WR Plaxico Burress 0 50 0
WR Tim Carter 0 20 0
PK Jay Feeley 3 FG 2 XP -
Pregame Notes: The Giants dropped the Skins game last week so this one matters a lot more now. On the road the G-men have not been nearly so formidable this season but the Raiders have been rather less than formidable anywhere they play lately.

Quarterback: Eli Manning continues to experience setbacks each week and has not scored more than once in any of the last four games. Unfortunately, he has seven interceptions in that time and has struggled to complete even half of his passes.

Running Backs: Tiki Barber had been red hot for the last six games but last week returned to the same off pattern he had in the first half of the year - big games at home and then far lesser production in every road game. Barber only gained 80 yards on 16 carries last week, his worst game in seven weeks.

Wide Receivers: Plaxico Burress has not turned in a score or even decent yardage for the last four games. He has remained under 50 yards in each match-up. Amani Toomer has fared much better, scoring in each of the last two games and exceeding 50 yards in the last three weeks.

Tight Ends: Jeremy Shockey has suffered a decline in the last four games along with the rest of the passing game though he had one 107 yard effort in the last home game in Philadelphia. Shockey has been very consistent in coming up biggest in road games until last week.

Match Against the Defense: Barber has not ran as well on the road in most games this year and the Raiders have not allowed a 100 yard rusher in the last six games. Barber could score once as most teams do, but his yardage should lag this week.

Collins faces a secondary that is only average and that has been worse against tight ends this year. Look for Shockey to continue his pattern of coming up bigger on the road and scoring this week as well. The Raiders pass defense is better this season and has not allowed any opponent to throw for more than two scores with most only turning in a single touchdown. The Raiders also lead the league in allowing place kicker points so Feely could maintain his lead in the NFL for kicking points.

Oakland Raiders (4-11)
1 20-30 @NE 10 17-31 DEN
2 17-23 KCC 11 16-13 @WAS
3 20-23 @PHI 12 21-33 MIA
4 19-13 DAL 13 10-34 @SDC
5 Open Bye 14 10-26 @NYJ
6 14-27 SDC 15 7-9 CLE
7 38-17 BUF 16 3-22 @DEN
8 34-25 @TEN 17 Dec 31 NYG
9 23-27 @KCC . THU SAT
OAK vs NYG Rush Catch Pass
QB Kerry Collins 0 0 180
RB Zack Crockett 70,1 10 0
TE Randall Williams 0 10 0
WR Randy Moss 0 70 0
WR Jerry Porter 0 40 0
WR Doug Gabriel 0 30 0
PK S. Janikowski 2 FG 1 XP -

Pregame Notes: The Raiders are just playing out their season knowing there is a good chance that a coaching upheaval is on the way in the offseason and with that, a cleaning of the house for players as well. The Raiders have not score more than one touchdown for the last four games and the Giants really need this game - not a good equation.

Quarterback: Kerry Collins lost his job in week 13 but then was handed the reins back in week 14. In the two games since, he has thrown one touchdown and three interceptions, lost two fumbles and never had more than 178 yards. No guarantee here that Tuiasosopo doesn't get some playing time and the rookie Andrew Walker being unavailable due to a groin injury is likely the only thing making Collins a starter this week.

Running Backs: Lamont Jordan missed last week with a turf toe injury and Zack Crockett ran for 61 yards on 15 carries in Denver. I am assuming that Jordan misses this week as well since he was wearing a boot all last week and a turf toe never heals quickly. Oh yes, plus this game is meaningless anyway.

Wide Receivers: One brief, ever so brief, bright spot for the Raiders was that Randy Moss had five catches for 72 yards last week - his best game since week 10. Moss only has three games over 100 yards this year and none since week four. His six scores leads all receivers but he only has one touchdown in the last six games. Jerry Porter has a brief burst in mid-season when Moss was injured but he has not been over 50 yards in a game for the last month.

Tight Ends: Randall Williams is now the starting tight end and yet it still does not matter.

Match Against the Defense: The Giants defense has only been average lately so Crockett could end up with some moderate rushing yardage this week. The Giants have allowed most opponents to score once or twice rushing in the last month, so figure on any Raider touchdown being more likely with Crockett.

Collins has been playing poorly and he likely knows his lot is not with the Raiders next year. Look for more of the same that will favor Moss who could score if Crockett doesn't take it.