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

Prediction: CAR 13, ARI 24

The Panthers squeaked out a win over the Saints last week which means their three wins have come against teams with a combined 1-14 record. Against teams that are not the bottom of their respective divisions, the Panthers are 0-2 and have lost both games by 13 points. The Cardinals are only two field goals short of being 5-0 and their last home win was over the Steelers. Consider the Panthers as being short-changed with only 3.5 points being given to them this week.

Update: David Carr has been held out of practice this week to rest his sore back but still insists that he will play this week and did return to the Saints game to play last week after getting blasted on a passing play. I will leave him in the projections and do not expect newly signed Vinny Testaverde to make a showing here but I am removing his rushing yardage since Carr likely won't be as mobile this week.

Anquan Boldin still has not practiced this week either due to his hip injury and I am not expecting him to play again this week. It is improved but not 100% and Boldin wants to be smart and wait until he is healthy to avoid re-aggravating the injury and making it even more long-term. Bryany Johnson was held out on Wednesday to rest a quadricep injury but returned on Thursday and is expected to be fine this week.

Carolina Panthers (3-2)
Homefield: Bank of America Stadium
  Opp Score Spread Over/Under
1 @STL 27-13 -1 42
2 HOU 21-34 -6.5 39
3 @ATL 27-20 -4 37.5
4 TB 7-20 -3 39
5 @NO 16-13 +4 43
6 @ARI   +3.5 40.5
7 BYE - - -
8 IND 28-Oct SUN 1:00 PM
9 @TEN 4-Nov SUN 1:00 PM
10 ATL 11-Nov SUN 1:00 PM
11 @GB 18-Nov SUN 1:00 PM
12 NO 25-Nov SUN 1:00 PM
13 SF 2-Dec SUN 1:00 PM
14 @JAC 9-Dec SUN 1:00 PM
15 SEA 16-Dec SUN 1:00 PM
16 DAL 22-Dec SAT 8:15 PM
17 @TB 30-Dec SUN 1:00 PM
CAR at ARI Rush Catch Pass
QB David Carr 20   180,1
RB DeShaun Foster 50 20  
RB DeAngelo Williams 20 20  
TE Jeff King   20  
WR Steve Smith   60,1  
WR Keary Colbert   30  
WR Drew Carter   30  
PK John Kasay 2 FG 1 XP  
Pregame Notes: The Panthers managed to comeback and win in New Orleans last week but scoring only 16 points against the Saints is like passing out shot glasses at a keg party. The loss of Delhomme is now officially for the season and David Carr takes over for however long he can remain upright (so far not an entire game). The Panthers have played an absolute cakewalk of a schedule so far and still lost two games. This week in the desert is shaping up to be the third just in time to sink to .500 for their week seven bye.

Quarterback: Remarkably, David Carr took a game against the Saints and only turned it into 119 yards and one touchdown later in the game. He's proving to be exactly half what Delhomme has been since Jake never threw for less than two scores and now Carr can barely manage one against a soft secondary. The Panthers will be bringing in some free agents this week looking to sign someone as a backup but Matt Moore could hold them off.

Running Backs: The loss of Delhomme could spell more trouble for a rushing attack that has been lackluster anyway. DeShaun Foster only managed 59 yards on 19 carries in New Orleans - NEW ORLEANS - and only gained 64 yards in Tampa Bay with Delhomme out. DeAngelo Williams is down to only half a dozen carries a week with little to show for it. The running game should be a way to relieve pressure from Carr but so far has not met expectations this year.

Wide Receivers: Two weeks of Carr and the receivers are no better there. Steve Smith did score once last week but only had 47 yards on four catches and only gained 32 yards on five catches the previous week. So far the loss of Delhomme has meant the demise of a productive Smith who started the year with big yardage efforts and four touchdowns in two games. In the three games since - just ten catches for 89 yards combined. That's called a decline. A severe decline. A catastrophic decline if you own Smith.

Keary Colbert had 74 yards last week as a season high but he's not even safe to keep his role this week. The rookie Dwayne Jarrett has played in only one game and sooner or later the Panthers are going to start on next year and that means Jarrett gets some game time reps.

Tight Ends: Those impressive opening weeks with Delhomme for Jeff King have now turned to just three catches for 47 yards over the last two Carr weeks. Not a good sign.

Match Against the Defense: The Cardinals rush defense has been very good this year and better when at home. No place to expect that Foster is suddenly going to catch fire. Look for moderate yardage and no score here.

Carr faces a secondary that is the weaker link in the defense but it won't be any worse than what the Saints had last week. Look for only moderate yardage in this game purely because the Panthers will need to throw a lot. That has to favor Steve Smith if only eventually because no other wideout here is stepping up.

Gaining Fantasy Points CAR 9 16 12 18 24 32
Preventing Fantasy Points ARI 20 10 26 6 25 10


Arizona Cardinals (3-2)
Homefield: University of Phoenix Stadium
  Opp Score Spread Over/Under
1 @SF 17-20 +3.5 45
2 SEA 23-20 +2.5 42.5
3 @BAL 23-26 +8 35.5
4 PIT 21-14 +6 42.5
5 @STL 34-31 -3 40.5
6 CAR   -3.5 40.5
7 @WAS 21-Oct SUN 1:00 PM
8 BYE - - -
9 @TB 4-Nov SUN 1:00 PM
10 DET 11-Nov SUN 4:15 PM
11 @CIN 18-Nov SUN 1:00 PM
12 SF 25-Nov SUN 4:05 PM
13 CLE 2-Dec SUN 4:05 PM
14 @SEA 9-Dec SUN 4:05 PM
15 @NO 16-Dec SUN 1:00 PM
16 ATL 23-Dec SUN 4:05 PM
17 STL 30-Dec SUN 4:15 PM
ARI vs CAR Rush Catch Pass
QB Kurt Warner     230,2
RB Edgerrin James 100,1 10  
TE Leonard Pope   10  
WR Jerheme Urban   30  
WR Larry Fitzgerald   100,1  
WR Bryant Johnson   60,1  
PK Neil Rackers 1 FG 3 XP  

Pregame Notes: After a few weeks of subbing in Kurt Warner for a struggling Matt Leinart, the Cards turn to Warner for good with Leinart being placed on Injured Reserve with a broken collarbone. Unlike trading Delhomme for Carr, this swap is actually an upgrade for the Cards who already have a solid rushing attack with Edgerrin James. A win here means that even a loss in Washington will give the Cards a winning record going into their week eight bye.

Quarterback: Now that Leinart is gone, the only concern is keeping 36-year old Kurt Warner from getting injured while the team decides who the back-up will be. Like the Panthers, the Cards are looking at options. Warner has looked very sharp this year and has scored twice in the two games when he had significant playing time. No drop-off in production with Warner under center - it may be much better.

Running Backs: Edgerrin James has only played in two home games this year and scored in each despite facing the Seahawks and Steelers. He's averaging almost 90 rushing yards per week and has scored three times this season. Every week they say that Marcel Shipp is going to be more involved and yet we are still waiting for Shipp to have more than one carry in any game.

Wide Receivers: Anquan Boldin has missed the last two games with a hip injury and is not a given to return this week. In his place, Larry Fitzgerald has been on fire, recording ten catches for 120 yards against the Steelers and nine receptions in St. Louis for 136 yards and one score. This unit will not miss Leinart, not at all. Bryant Johnson has replaced Boldin and gained a season high 80 yards on six receptions last Sunday. This passing attack under Warner should return weekly big numbers once Boldin returns.

Tight Ends: Leonard Pope only has one catch in the last three games. No fantasy value this year.

Match Against the Defense: The Panthers have a good rushing defense that has held opposing runners to under 100 yards every week but then again - the Panthers have yet to face any offense that actually can run. Look for solid yardage here and one rushing score. James likely won't have a big game but should definitely have upwards of 25 or more carries.

Warner goes against a secondary that statistically has been good but again - look at who they have played this year. This is the same defense that allowed Harrington to throw for 361 yards and two scores. I like Warner to have decent to good passing numbers this week with two touchdowns that will favor Fitzgerald twice or split with Johnson.

Gaining Fantasy Points ARI 10 21 4 28 9 10
Preventing Fantasy Points CAR 17 17 18 13 22 13

The Huddle
~ 2007 ~
Season Ticket
Sunday night
On Bye

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