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Predictions & Projections
David Dorey
Player Projections by Team
Game Predictions Summary
The Huddle
October 11, 2006
Season Ticket
Sunday Late
Sunday night
On Bye
HOU at DAL TEN at WAS     updated

Prediction: MIA 14, NYJ 16

Now here is one messy looking game. The Dolphins have switched drivers with the same results and the Jets come off a 41-0 butt whooping by the Jaguars. One team has to win and in the end, these Dolphins as visitors keep ending up as road kill.

The home team always won these match-ups last year, with the Jets winning 17-7 in week 2 and the Dolphins taking it 24-20 in week 15.

Update: There are no changes to the projections but once again, Laveranues Coles is listed as questionable this week because of his ankle injury and was held out of practice. He is still expected to play as he has every week with the same routine.

Tim Dwight is also questionable because of a thigh bruise and also was held out of practice but like Coles, he is expected to play and is working into more playing time.

Miami Dolphins (1-4)
1 17-28 @PIT 10 --- KC
2 6-16 BUF 11 --- MIN
3 13-10 TEN 12 --- @DET
4 15-17 @HOU 13 --- JAX
5 10-20 @NE 14 --- NE
6 --- @NYJ 15 --- @BUF
7 --- GB 16 --- NYJ
8 Open Bye 17 --- @IND
9 --- @CHI - MON THU
MIA at MYJ Rush Catch Pass
QB Joey Harrington 0 0 200,1
RB Ronnie Brown 70,1 20 0
TE Randy McMichael 0 50 0
WR Chris Chambers 0 60 0
WR Derek Hagen 0 20 0
WR Wes Welker 0 40,1 0
PK Olindo Mare 0 FG 2 XP -
Pregame Notes: The Fins made the switch to Joey Harrington last week but the results were pretty much a mirror to what Culpepper had done. Ronnie Brown has been wasted in the face of defenses that no longer respect the passing game and while the defense has held opponents to low scores, it just cannot quite get them low enough.

Quarterback: Taking his first start, Joey Harrington completed 26 of 41 passes for 232 yards and two interceptions against the Patriots last week. That was almost exactly what Culpepper had done in Pittsburgh to open the season. Where progress happened was with McMichael and Welker turning in season high games - the two best performances by any Dolphin receiver this year. And yet still - that came from a tight end and a slot receiver and not from the two primary wideouts.

Running Backs: Ronnie Brown has turned in decent fantasy points in most games but only thanks to scoring a short touchdown or adding receiving yardage to the mix. Brown has only averaged 40 rushing yards per game on the road this year though all his scores where as a visitor. His two home games had at least 100 total yards. That doesn't help this week.

Wide Receivers: Chris Chambers has two touchdowns so far and those were the only passing scores on the year. But he has never had more than 55 yards in any game and has not topped 40 yards in the last three weeks. With Harrington as the helm, Chambers had five catches for just 29 yards. Marty Booker has remained around 30 or 40 yards every game and has yet to score. Booker injured his shoulder last week and is expected to miss this game. He will be replaced by the rookie Derek Hagen.

Wes Welker has been the most productive wideout with as high as 77 yards in a game and he has not been under 41 yards yet this year but a slot receiver should never be the most productive wideout.

Tight Ends: The lone bright spot on the offense is that Harrington relied heavily on Randy McMichael who turned nine passes into six catches for 84 yards last week.

Match Against the Defense: This has to be a better week. Ronnie Brown faces a defense that ranks 27th against running backs and that has allowed nine rushing touchdowns already this year. If Brown can have a decent road game, this should be it though at Houston he only had 49 yards so there are no guarantees. Mark him down for one score and decent yardage.

Harrington goes against a secondary that has been pretty good this year and that has only allowed visiting quarterbacks to throw for one touchdown and around 220 yards. That sounds about on par for what Harrington has done so far. The score most likely goes to either McMichael or to the slot receiver which in this case is the most productive of all.

New York Jets (2-3)
1 23-16 @TEN 10 --- @NE
2 17-24 NE 11 --- CHI
3 28-20 @BUF 12 --- HOU
4 28-31 IND 13 --- @GB
5 0-41 @JAX 14 --- BUF
6 --- MIA 15 --- @MIN
7 --- DET 16 --- @MIA
8 --- @CLE 17 --- OAK
9 Open Bye - - MON
NYJ vs MIA Rush Catch Pass
QB Chad Pennington 0 0 210,1
RB Kevan Barlow 40 0 0
RB Leon Washington 20 0 0
TE Chris Baker 0 10 0
WR Laveranues Coles 0 80,1 0
WR Tim Dwight 0 40 0
WR Jerricho Cotchery 0 60 0
PK Mike Nugent 3 FG 1 XP -

Pregame Notes: The Jets 2-1 start on the season was short-lived with two losses that included a 41-0 blowout by the Jaguars in Jacksonville last week. The rushing game at least appears to be improved but the passing game fell apart against a good defense. Back at home this week, the Jets are still looking for their first win with their own fans in attendance.

Quarterback: Chad Pennington started out hot this year with two 300 yard games that had two scores in each. Then he cooled down to a couple of 200 yard games with one score. Then last week it was armageddon when Pennington only came up with 71 passing yards and three interceptions. Seems Pennington seems to do as well as the defense usually allows opponents and the better the secondary, the worse Pennington gets.

Running Backs: The boxscore fairly screamed last week that the Jets had a 101 yard runner. The rookie Leon Washington ran 23 times for 101 yards against a very stout Jaguars defense. Have the Jets discovered a new elite runner? Maybe - but probably not. In a game that saw the Jets get creamed 41-0, the team only attempted 17 passes and fell behind 14-0 before Washington had a single carry. After one series of minimal yards, the Jets trailed 21-0 before Washington has a meaningful gain. He only had 30 yards on six carries by halftime when the team trailed 28-0 and only that because he had a 19 yard run. He had a nice game thanks to the Jets giving up at halftime while the Jaguars protected their shutout and the Jets ran the clock out for them. This was also a gift to Washington who went to Florida State and Jacksonville was his hometown.

He'll be used more of course, but Kevan Barlow should continue to figure in and remains the starter so far.

Wide Receivers: The paltry passing numbers from last week naturally stripped the fantasy value from Laveranues Coles and Jerricho Cotchery. Coles in particular has been complaining about his reduced workload that turned into just three catches for 19 yards last week and HC Eric Mangini said the one thing that the fantasy world hates to hear. Other wideouts - Brad Smith and Tim Dwight - have "emerged" and are getting a few more passes which come at the expense of Coles and Cotchery. Remember, Mangini comes from New England where the scheme specifically calls for a varied set of wideouts. One game is hardly enough to consider a turning point but it bears watching to see if Coles continues to get less work. Justin McCareins continues to fade away and has no catches in the last two games.

Tight Ends: No fantasy impact.

Match Against the Defense: The Dolphins rushing defense has not allowed a rushing score this year and that won't likely happen here. They have given up a couple of decent yardage games to Parker and McGahee but this group pales in comparison to them. Look for a return of minimal rushing yards here against an opponent who won't start packing up at halftime.

Pennington will have to win this game or at the very least not lose it with a turnover. The Dolphins have given up at least one passing score every week but with lower yardage. Expect another one of Pennington's 200/1 TD games this week that should favor Coles.