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Predictions & Projections
David Dorey
Player Projections by Team
Game Predictions Summary
The Huddle
September 13, 2006
Season Ticket
Sunday Late
Sunday night
Sunday Late
DET at CHI OAK at BAL STL at SF   updated

Prediction: NO 16, GB 13

The Saints come off a win for their new head coach Sean Payton and once again hit the road this week. In fact, they have three road games in the first four weeks. The Packers come off a humbling shut out at home by the Bears that undoubtedly left Brett Favre wondering what he was thinking back in April when he made his decision to return. Can't set many new records when he cannot score and the team gets throttled every week.

This week may be the Packers best shot at a win until week 13 has the Jets visiting. But the problem here is that the Saints opened with a win but lost their next three games during the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina last year. The Packers had lost their first four games and so in week five, the Saints visited the Packers. The downtrodden Saints were then treated to a 52-3 ass kicking. Favre threw three touchdowns, including a 26 yard score to Donald Lee during the third quarter to boost the margin to 42-3 just in case the Saints were thinking about scoring five unanswered touchdowns to retake the lead. That sort of thing sticks with a team though many of those players and all of the coaches are gone.

New Orleans Saints (1-0)
1 19-14 @CLE 10 --- @PIT
2 --- @GB 11 --- CIN
3 --- ATL 12 --- @ATL
4 --- @CAR 13 --- SF
5 --- TB 14 --- @DAL
6 --- PHI 15 --- WAS
7 Open Bye 16 --- @NYG
8 --- BAL 17 --- CAR
9 --- @TB - - MON
NOR at GB Rush Catch Pass
QB Drew Brees 0 0 210,1
RB Reggie Bush 40 60 0
RB Deuce McAllister 50 0 0
WR Joe Horn 0 40 0
WR Marques Colston 0 50,1 0
WR Devery Henderson 0 50 0
PK John Carney 3 FG 1 XP -
Pregame Notes: The Saints could not be happier about the performance of their defense in the opener against the Browns. What was once the glaring weakness of the team only allowed 217 yards to Cleveland while collecting three turnovers. The rushing game was effective using the duo of Bush and McAllister and the passing game... well... that could still use a little work.

Quarterback: Drew Brees was not spectacular in his first game as a Saint but he was effective and completed 17 of 31 passes for 176 yards and one score. He also threw one interception. What he did not do is ever throw a pass to a tight end and his preferred target was, of course, Reggie Bush. This could be an offense that is difficult to prepare for since there are none quite like it.

Running Backs: The tandem scheme worked rather well in Cleveland. Deuce McAllister ran for 90 yards on 22 carries (4.1 YPC) while Reggie Bush had 14 runs for 61 yards (4.4 YPC) and eight catches for 58 yards.That's 151 yards on the ground in two very different ways. Bush has yet to score a touchdown in the regular season but it's only a matter of time.

Wide Receivers: Brees only used the wideouts for 19 passes which only resulted in nine catches for 118 yards by the crew. Joe Horn only turned in two catches for 25 yards and Devery Henderson had three receptions for 44 yards. The lead wideout was Marques Colston with four grabs for just 49 yards and the lone touchdown in the game. So far, the offense is revolving around Bush and McAllister and not the wideouts.

Tight Ends: Not even a pass last week, let alone a catch.

Match Against the Defense: The Packers rushing defense is better than many and held the Bears to only 97 yards on 32 carries. This could be different with McAllister and Bush though, particularly with the receiving ability of Bush. It's still a little early to know what to expect from this offense, but figure on McAllister turning in lower numbers this week and Bush to be used as a receiver as much as a runner.

Brees could have a nice game here against a team that has already allowed Grossman to throw for 262 yards and Muhammad to gain 102. That match-up against Al Harris could prove beneficial to the flanker Colston. Look for an improved passing attack this week that should involve the wideouts more.

Green Bay Packers (0-1)
1 0-26 CHI 10 --- @MIN
2 --- NO 11 --- NE
3 --- @DET 12 --- @SEA
4 --- @PHI 13 --- NYJ
5 --- STL 14 --- @SF
6 Open Bye 15 --- DET
7 --- @MIA 16 --- MIN
8 --- ARZ 17 --- @CHI
9 --- @BUF - MON THU
GBP vs NO Rush Catch Pass
QB Brett Favre 0 0 180,1
RB Ahman Green 80 20 0
TE Bubba Franks 0 10 0
WR Donald Driver 0 70,1 0
WR Robert Ferguson 0 30 0
WR Greg Jennings 0 30 0
PK Dave Rayner 2 FG 1 XP -

Pregame Notes: The Packers opened the year with a shutout - the first in Favre's career and the passing game failed to materialize outside of Donald Driver. The secondary allowed the Bears to take the win along with two interceptions by Brett Favre who continues to try to make something happen (AKA throw it up and see who catches it).

Quarterback: In what may be his final season, Brett Favre's chase of the record book starts out with only 15 completions on 29 attempts for 170 yards, no touchdowns and two interceptions. Favre appears past getting frustrated anymore. He looks more like he walked into a pickup football game and just realized he's on the bad team.

Favre enjoyed one of his best games of the year when the Saints visited in week five last year, ending with 215 yards and three scores.

Running Backs: The lone bright spot from the Bears massacre was the play of Ahman Green who returned from a thigh tendon injury last year to gain 110 yards on 20 carries against the Chicago defense. He also added 22 yards on three catches and unlike years past, he did not have to share with Najeh Davenport of Tony Fisher. The play of Green gives a glimmer of hope to the offense that is absent with the passing game.

Ahman Green was already gone in week five last year but in his place Najeh Davenport ran for two scores against the Saints.

Wide Receivers: Donald Driver was the lead wideout with seven catches for 96 yards but he had almost no help from either Robert Ferguson (2-17) or Greg Jennings (1-5). Whatever happens in the passing game will be up to Driver this year unless Jennings emerges.

Tight Ends: Bubba Franks is back but he had no catches. Only Donald Lee was able to provide a single catch for 25 yards.

Match Against the Defense: The Saints defense was surprisingly good in Cleveland. Their new set of linebackers that had been a concern only allowed Droughns to gain 27 yards on 11 carries. Green is better than Droughns though and should fare better with around 70 to 80 yards if last week's performance holds up. He's going to be entrenched in the defensive game plan now.

What Favre will do here is likely throw for two more interceptions. The Saints defense is very aggressive and the six times that Frye was forced to leave the pocket and run last week will turn into either incompletions, interceptions or fumbles against the less mobile Favre. Eventually he will connect on a long pass or two and should post one score but this defense is playing much better than expected. Not the same for the Packers offense.