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Predictions & Projections
David Dorey
Player Projections by Team
Game Predictions Summary
The Huddle
December 20, 2006
Season Ticket
Sunday Late
Sunday Late
updated IND at HOU TEN at BUF CIN at DEN NYJ at MIA

Prediction: TEN 21, BUF 24

Betting against the Titans the last month or so has been the road to ruin. Tennessee is now at .500 on the season and has won their last five games. The Bills come off a shut out over the Dolphins and have been playing great since their week eight bye. Everything points at a Buffalo victory here except one thing - the Titans are winning every week with the only commonality being that they somehow won.

Update: Travis Henry is questionable to play on the injury report but returned to practice on Thursday and will start this week. Bo Scaife is still out this week while Drew Bennett has not practiced this week. Bennett is expected to play. There is no need to change the projections but be aware that without Scaife and with a banged up Bennett, the TItans could have problems moving the ball this week and cannot rely on another three scores from the defense.

Peerless Price is nursing a sore quad muscle and has missed practice but could still play. He does little every week anyway and is not a decent fantasy start even when healthy.

Tennessee Titans (7-7)
1 16-23 NYJ 10 26-27 BAL
2 7-40 @SD 11 31-13 @PHI
3 10-13 @MIA 12 24-21 NYG
4 14-45 DAL 13 20-17 IND
5 13-14 @IND 14 26-20 @HOU
6 25-22 @WAS 15 24-17 JAX
7 Open Bye 16 --- @BUF
8 28-22 HOU 17 --- NE
9 7-37 @JAX - - -
TEN at BUF Rush Catch Pass
QB Vince Young 70,1 0 140,1
RB Travis Henry 100,1 10 0
TE Ben Hartsock 0 20 0
WR Drew Bennett 0 40 0
WR Bobby Wade 0 30 0
WR Brandon Jones 0 40,1 0
PK Rob Bironas 1 FG 3 XP -
Pregame Notes: Vince Young is not only 7-2 as a starter, his two losses included a one point margin against the Ravens. The only game that the Titans have outright lost with Young was in week nine against the Jaguars. Last week had very little offense to it thanks to three defensive scores but by the same token, the Jaguars who beat them so soundly in week nine could only come up with 17 points despite possessing the ball for nearly 45 minutes of the game. The Texans are still without any offensive stars outside of Young but with him and an opportunistic defense led by Pacman Jones, this team is far more exciting to watch than could have been imagined a couple of months ago.

Quarterback: Vince Young had a horrible game statistically last week but only because he spent most the game on the sideline laughing at the Jaguars. In games without three defensive scores, Young has been running for 70 or more yards per game and scoring at least once with yardage that typically falls below 200 yards on the road. Young has never had more than one score during a road game so far.

Running Backs: Travis Henry barely practiced last week with a sore ankle but he did start and gained 37 yards on 12 carries. As contrary to reason as it sounds, Henry has been a far better runner in road games than at home this yea rand has scored in three of the last four games away from Tennessee. Three of his four games over 100 rushing yards also came in road games.

Wide Receivers: The Titan wideouts have never been consistent this year and outside of Drew Bennett, none of them carry much fantasy value. Bennett has scored three times this year and has all three games over 100 yards by a Titan wideout this season but he's also had three games without a catch. Brandon Jones also has three scores on the season but his yardage rarely exceeded more than 35 yards in a game.

Tight Ends: Bo Scaife did not play last week because of a sprained ankle and pending reports that he is back in practice I will assume that Ben Hartsock will take the start.

Match Against the Defense: The Bills rush defense is weak and even at home has allowed some big yardage games to recent visitors. Look for Henry's ankle to be better this week and for him to resume his 100+ yardage ways this Sunday. Henry should manage at least one rushing score here and another one is likely by Young who has ran in a score in exactly every other game since taking over as a starter.

What likely won't be here is a big passing game since most opponents end with much less than 200 yards and just one passing score. Where that will go is almost impossible to predict for the Titans who have no preferred receivers but it will most likely lean to a slot or fourth receiver.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM    QB   RB   WR   TE   PK  DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points BUF 28 29 16 29 25 8
Preventing Fantasy Points TEN 24 27 26 25 18 7


Buffalo Bills (7-7)
1 17-19 @NE 10 16-17 @IND
2 16-6 @MIA 11 24-21 @HOU
3 20-28 NYJ 12 27-24 JAX
4 17-12 MIN 13 21-24 SD
5 7-40 @CHI 14 31-13 @NYJ
6 17-20 @DET 15 21-0 MIA
7 6-28 NE 16 --- TEN
8 Open Bye 17 --- @BAL
9 24-10 GB - - -
BUF vs TEN Rush Catch Pass
QB J.P. Losman 10 0 190,2
RB Willis McGahee 70,1 10 0
TE Robert Royal 0 20,1 0
WR Peerless Price 0 30 0
WR Lee Evans 0 70,1 0
WR Josh Reed 0 40 0
PK Rian Lindell 2 FG 3 XP -

Pregame Notes: The Bills have won five of their last seven games and the two losses came by three points or less against the Colts and Chargers - pretty impressive. Losman has been on a nice streak for the last three games and the defense has been stepping up as shown last week in the shut out over the Dolphins. The Bills are winning largely without any real stars on the offense- much like the Titans. This is the final home game before the final trip to Baltimore, so it's all hands on deck here to ensure this won't be a sub-.500 season.

Quarterback: Over the last three weeks, the Bills have faced the Chargers, Jets and Dolphins and J.P. Losman has thrown seven scores in that time with never less than two per game. After only throwing seven touchdowns in the first nine weeks, Losman has ten in the last six weeks and has actually discovered that more than Lee Evans exists. He still tends to remain below 200 yards in most games but has two 300+ yard games this season.

Running Backs: Willis McGahee suffered a head/neck injury when slammed hard to the ground on his second carry of the game by Zach Thomas but he was able to return and finished with 79 yards on 28 carries against the Fins last week. That was the first time in four games that McGahee has failed to score though his yardage efforts this year have been wildly varying and more often 60 yards or less. McGahee only has two efforts over 100 rushing yards this year and both came against the Jets.

Wide Receivers: While Lee Evans has scored in each of the last two games, this unit has come to life in recent weeks. For most of the season it was either Evans or nothing, but now Peerless Price scored in weeks 11 and 13 and even Josh Reed scored last week. Granted - no one but Evans ever accounts for much more than 50 yards in a game, but at least Losman is using his wideouts far better now.

Tight Ends: If there is any truly significant development, it is that Losman has finally realized that tight ends can do more than just block and Robert Royal has scored in each of the last three games. He even had 62 yards last week on catches of 28, 33 and one yard.

Match Against the Defense: The Titans rushing defense is one of the weaker units in the league though playing SD once and JAX twice have not helped statistically. McGahee hasn't been that big on yardage anyway, so expect a moderate rushing game here with a good chance for one rushing score.

Losman faces a secondary that typically allows at least one score if not up to three on the road but the yardage is not usually that high. CB Pacman Jones matches on Peerless Price though he could get moved around. Look for a couple of passing scores in this game that will favor Evans and most likely Royal again even though it is hard to imagine Royal will come up with his fourth straight game with a score.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM    QB   RB   WR   TE   PK  DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points TEN 13 24 30 14 29 4
Preventing Fantasy Points BUF 7 29 8 14 4 21