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Predictions & Projections
David Dorey
The Huddle
~ 2007 ~
Season Ticket
Sunday night

Prediction: CLE 17, OAK 27

Whoa. The Browns beat the Bengals 51-45 last week and the Raiders should have beaten the Broncos in Denver. The Browns have now used the entirety of their bag of good luck dust but the Raiders at home are still looking for their first win and Cleveland is just the team to give it to them. Neither team can take the other lightly and that plays more into the favor of the Oakland defense going against a still enubriated Browns team.

The Browns won this match-up 24-21 last year in Oakland during week four.

Update: Josh McCown has practiced this week on a limited basis because of his sprained foot but has already been named the starter for Sunday and is not expected to be limited. Lamont Jordan has been bothered by a back injury which kept him out of practice on Wednesday and he only had limited participation on Thursday.

HC Lane Kiffen said that it was more than merely resting him on Wednesday but has been rather tight-lipped about the situation other than to say it may end up a game time decision for Jordan this week. He has a dream match-up this weekend with the Browns visiting but given the risk he carries now, I am lowering his projections but keeping the same score which can be considered a defensive score now. Justin Fargas will figure in as needed and that is a large drop-off from Jordan.

Cleveland Browns (1-1)
Homefield: Cleveland Stadium
  Opp Score Spread Over/Under
1 PIT 7-34 +4.5 37
2 CIN 51-45 +7 41.5
3 @OAK 23-Sep +3 39
4 BAL 30-Sep SUN 1:00 PM
5 @NE 7-Oct SUN 1:00 PM
6 MIA 14-Oct SUN 1:00 PM
7 BYE - - -
8 @STL 28-Oct SUN 1:00 PM
9 SEA 4-Nov SUN 4:05 PM
10 @PIT 11-Nov SUN 1:00 PM
11 @BAL 18-Nov SUN 1:00 PM
12 HOU 25-Nov SUN 1:00 PM
13 @ARI 2-Dec SUN 4:05 PM
14 @NYJ 9-Dec SUN 4:15 PM
15 BUF 16-Dec SUN 1:00 PM
16 @CIN 23-Dec SUN 1:00 PM
17 SF 30-Dec SUN 1:00 PM
CLE at OAK Rush Catch Pass
QB Derek Anderson     240,2
RB Jamal Lewis 80 10  
TE Kellen Winslow   60  
WR Braylon Edwards   80,1  
WR Joe Jurevicius   40  
WR Josh Cribbs   30,1  
PK Phil Dawson 1 FG 2 XP  
Pregame Notes: A team that only scored seven points in their opener and who has had one of the worst offenses in the league for years just won a game by scoring 51 points. That was not just "any given Sunday" which just happened, it was "any given Sunday, bitch!". That was why they play the game. This week is why we don't have to watch every one of them.

Quarterback: Wow. Now there's a reason to change quarterbacks. Derek Anderson merely threw for 328 yards and five scores in last week's track meet after only managing to complete 13 of 28 for 184 yards and one score the previous Sunday. If nothing else, this has quieted the talk about Brady Quinn for now but games against OAK, BAL, NE and MIA coming up, maintaining the pace for Anderson is rather overly optimistic.

Charlie Frye was the quarterback last year when these teams met and he threw for 192 yards and three touchdowns with two interceptions..

Running Backs: The same Jamal Lewis that ran for 35 yards on 11 carries against the Steelers comes off a game with 215 rushing yards on 28 carries and one score. Hopefully Lewis has cut that one out of the sports section and framed it because it was an aberration of a monumental scale.

The Browns rushed for 199 yards on 25 carries with Reuben Droughns in Oakland last season.

Wide Receivers: After starting out with only 49 yards on three catches in week one, Braylon Edwards turned in eight receptions for 146 yards and two scores in last week's point-fest. Even Joe Jurevicius had two scores on his mere four catches for 44 yards. It was magic to be sure but playing in Oakland this week will be a far tougher challenge as it was last year.

Braylon Edwards caught six passes for 75 yards in Oakland while Joe Jurevicius only had three catches for 22 yards but scored once.

Tight Ends: Kellen Winslow led all tight ends last week when he reeled in six passes for 100 yards and a score. He remains the only consistent performed on this offense with no game less than 83 yards so far.

Winslow only had three receptions for 31 yards in Oakland last season but did score once.

Match Against the Defense: The Raiders rushing defense has been only average this year at best, but which Browns team is showing up this week? More than likely the same road team that was in Pittsburgh in week one. Expect Jamal Lewis to settle down significantly from last week but to still post decent numbers here.

Anderson was obviously red hot last week and the Raiders secondary has given up about 280 passing yards per game but look for a lesser effort this week from Anderson. The Raiders are at home and already have faced this offense last year in a game they could have won with a much weaker team.

Gaining Fantasy Points CLE 6 12 9 2 12 23
Preventing Fantasy Points OAK 27 25 30 5 31 25


Oakland Raiders (0-2)
Homefield: McAfee Coliseum
  Opp Score Spread Over/Under
1 DET 21-36 -1 39
2 @DEN 20-23 +10 37.5
3 CLE 23-Sep -3 39
4 @MIA 30-Sep SUN 1:00 PM
5 BYE - - -
6 @SD 14-Oct SUN 4:15 PM
7 KC 21-Oct SUN 4:05 PM
8 @TEN 28-Oct SUN 1:00 PM
9 HOU 4-Nov SUN 4:15 PM
10 CHI 11-Nov SUN 4:15 PM
11 @MIN 18-Nov SUN 1:00 PM
12 @KC 25-Nov SUN 1:00 PM
13 DEN 2-Dec SUN 4:05 PM
14 @GB 9-Dec SUN 1:00 PM
15 IND 16-Dec SUN 4:05 PM
16 @JAC 23-Dec SUN 1:00 PM
17 SD 30-Dec SUN 4:15 PM
OAK vs CLE Rush Catch Pass
QB Josh McCown     250,2
RB Lamont Jordan 70 10  
TE Zach Miller   20  
WR Jerry Porter   80,1  
WR Ronald Curry   100,1  
WR Mike Williams   20  
PK Sebastian Janikowski 2 FG 2 XP  

Pregame Notes: The Raiders played the Broncos to even in Denver last week and only a strategic call by Mike Shanahan saved the game for Denver. No way that Sebastian Janikowski could nail two straight field goals. The running game is improved with a refreshed Lamont Jordan and Josh McCown remains the starter for reasons hard to fathom after a horrid showing last week. This week is the best shot for the Raiders to win a game though perhaps the entire season. They simply have to win here and the Browns will still be too happy with themselves after last week.

Quarterback: The Raiders are sticking with Josh McCown this week despite his throwing for only 73 yards in Denver with three interceptions against just one score. This week against the visiting Browns should pinball McCown back up before crashing back down in Miami in week four. Oakland is at home playing a bad secondary - this may be the only time it is actually safe to start McCown for the rest of the year. One note of caution here - McCown does have a sprained right foot and a cracked finger on his throwing hand but evidently remains a better option than Daunte Culpepper.

The Raiders only threw for 68 yards and one score against the Browns last year.

Running Backs: Okay, so Lamont Jordan only gained 70 rushing yards in week one but he had nine catches for 89 yards. Last week he had roughly the same yardage but it all came on 25 carries for 159 yards and he never had a catch. He only had one pass thrown to him after getting ten passes in the season opener. Jordan is running hard and finding holes and this week should be no exception.

Jordan ran for 128 yards on 20 carries and scored once against the Browns last season.

Wide Receivers: So much for Ronald Curry "the star". After gaining 133 yards on ten catches in the opener, he only managed two receptions for 12 yards when he was actually covered by Champ Bailey. Jerry Porter finally came to life a little last Sunday when he had a 46-yard touchdown catch but it was on his only in the game. So far this passing attack is little more than Curry when he can get open and almost nothing if he cannot. This week - he can.

No wideout had more than 27 yards in the meeting with the Browns last year.

Tight Ends: Zach Miller still has a bright future but it is starting slowly with only six catches for 41 yards so far.

Match Against the Defense: Like bringing a hungry man to a Vegas buffet. The Browns have allowed both previous opponents to gain over 100 rushing yards and against the pass? They are averaging five touchdowns allowed per game. Sure, Palmer carved them up last week but so did Roethlisberger in the season opener. Start your Raiders now while you still can. It may never get this good again this season.

Gaining Fantasy Points OAK 18 3 19 24 28 8
Preventing Fantasy Points CLE 32 21 32 27 27 21

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