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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: Seattle 17, Green Bay 24

This is a meaningless game since the Seahawks have already secured homefield throughout the playoffs and the Packers are down to just letting Favre wing long passes downfield to waiting safeties. But this could be the final game for Brett Favre in front of home town fans no less. Shaun Alexander is a lock to score once and maybe twice to get the NFL record but beyond that, there just is not much to play for here by the Seahawks. Ironically, it has Holmgren returning as the opposing coach when he was the last coach with great success in Green Bay.

Update: Seneca Wallace has been working out with the first team and it appears that Hasselbeck may not get much more than a token appearance in this meaningless game. I am lowering his numbers and including Seneca Wallace.

I have lowered my aggressive Favre projections a little not because I think the game will be harder, but because the Seahawks will be resting so many defensive players that there should not be the major need to catch up as there has been in previous games which leads to less passing. His projections are still a leap of faith of course given that he has not thrown a touchdown in the last four games but I still like this game - which could be his last - to go well for him at home in what should be fine weather.

Robert Ferguson is still bothered by his sprained knee and has not practiced. There is a definite chance that he will not play.

Seattle Seahawks (13-2)
1 14-26 @JAC 10 31-16 STL
2 21-18 ATL 11 27-25 @SFO
3 37-12 ARI 12 24-21 NYG
4 17-20 @WAS 13 42-0 @PHI
5 37-31 @STL 14 41-3 SFO
6 42-10 HOU 15 28-24 @TEN
7 13-10 DAL 16 28-13 IND
8 Open Bye 17 Jan 1 @GBP
9 33-19 @ARI . MON SAT
SEA at GB Rush Catch Pass
QB Matt Hasselbeck 0 0 80
QB Seneca Wallace 20 0 110
RB Shaun Alexander 50,2 0 0
RB Maurice Morris 70 20 0
TE Jerramy Stevens 0 40 0
WR Darrell Jackson 0 20 0
WR Bobby Engram 0 50 0
WR Joe Jurevicius 0 30 0
PK Josh Brown 1 FG 2 XP -
Pregame Notes: Seattle is in the new situation of playing a game with no meaning since they have clinched everything possible this year. Shaun Alexander is one score away from breaking the NFL scoring record but beyond that, there just is nothing much to play for other than a tune-up against a team that has defined what a "lost season" is all about.

Quarterback: Matt Hasselbeck will start this week but that doesn't mean he will finish the game. Green Bay at home can send enough of a pass rush to prevent exposing Hasselbeck to unnecessary risk later in the game but with a bye week coming up, some work will be needed to keep Hasselbeck sharp. That casts a lot of risk on relying on Hasselbeck this week.

Running Backs: One touchdown = all-time NFL record for scoring in a season. After last year when Shaun Alexander was denied the chance to secure the NFL rushing lead, figure that one score this week as more certain than the sun rising and a second score to bury the record as almost as likely. Even if it only takes two carries. In fact, it may only require two carries.

Shaun Alexander has left the team during the week to attend an Aunt's funeral but he should be back for this game. All he really needs is a couple of strategic carries anyway.

Wide Receivers: Darrell Jackson is back in form and could have a monster game here if the Seahawks really cared which they don't. He's likely been told to go out on the one-yard line anyway so Alexander can come in. Joe Jurevicius and Bobby Engram should play the entire game but Jackson will more likely sit out some or even most of this game to rest up his knee for the playoffs.

Tight Ends: Jerramy Stevens has scored in each of the last three games, a good sign for his value in the passing scheme during the playoffs. But less likely this week.

Match Against the Defense: The Packers have been outstanding against wideouts this year if only because teams get the lead and then run the ball to close the game. Expect - no, make that demand - that Alexander scores twice to get the record here but his yardage will likely be lower because there is no reason to run him more than needed and risk injury.

Look for the passing game to only manage very moderate numbers here and not likely score more than once if even that. There is no guarantee how long Hasselbeck plays and the Packers pass defense has been generally good.

Green Bay Packers (3-12)
1 3-17 @DET 10 33-25 @ATL
2 24-26 CLE 11 17-20 MIN
3 16-17 TBB 12 14-19 @PHI
4 29-32 @CAR 13 7-19 @CHI
5 52-3 NOR 14 16-13 DET
6 Open Bye 15 3-48 @BAL
7 20-23 @MIN 16 17-24 CHI
8 14-21 @CIN 17 Jan 1 SEA
9 10-20 PIT . . MON
GBP vs SEA Rush Catch Pass
QB Brett Favre 0 0 250,2
RB Tony Fisher 30 10 0
RB Noah Herron 40,1 0 0
TE Donald Lee 0 30,1 0
TE David Martin 0 40 0
WR Donald Driver 0 100,1 0
WR Robert Ferguson 0 20 0
WR Antonio Chatman 0 40 0
PK Ryan Longwell 1 FG 3 XP -

Pregame Notes: This is the final conclusion to a nightmare season that has witnessed almost every offensive star become injured and miss time other than Favre who was injured but never missed time because he is Brett Favre. This could be the final game by one of the great ones and Favre is one of the most popular players in the game today. The Seahawks do not care what happens on the scoreboard in this game but Favre still does. This game seems destined for a nice sendoff by Favre who is likely at the end of a glorious career.

Quarterback: Only Brett Favre could throw 27 interceptions in one season and yet still be considered an absolute lock for the Hall of Fame. This is likely his final game according to popular opinion and one that he will want to serve as the final period to his book of greatness.

Running Backs: There remains a chance that Samkon Gado could return from his knee injury this week according to reports but the Seahawks have the #1 defense against running backs in the NFL this year. Tony Fisher started last week but Noah Herron had more carries. In a game that will likely have Favre throwing more often than not, it likely doesn't matter which running back is in the backfield this week.

Wide Receivers: Donald Driver remains the only consistent player here but Rod Gardner only needed a couple of days of practice to become a target for Favre. Gardner had two catches for 23 yards last week and Robert Ferguson never had a single pass. The hopes for this unit this week is that Seattle doesn't care and allows Favre to end his career in the same way he has played every game - throwing long and scoring touchdowns.

Tight Ends: Bubba Franks is on injured reserve and David Martin had a concussion last week but could still play here. Donald Lee was the only tight end in most of last week's game but only had three catches for 10 yards.

Match Against the Defense: Always a challenge to predict a meaningless game but the Seahawks have the #1 defense against the run so expect little from the Packers in the run game that could mix in Herron, Fisher and even Gado potentially.

This is possibly Favre's last game and Seattle has nothing to win. It's pretty much all speculation, but it's hard to imagine Brett Favre at Lambeau going out with a whimper. An interception - maybe. But not a whimper.