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FANTASY FOOTBALL WEEKLY FEATURES

Predictions & Projections
David Dorey
The Huddle
WEEK 8
~ 2007 ~
Season Ticket
Sunday
Sunday
Sunday
Monday
On Bye
ARI, ATL
BAL, DAL
KC, SEA
*updated

Prediction: NYG 31, MIA 24

Wow. This game is being played in England at Wembley Stadium which will be a night game though only 1 PM EST here in the states. That means the NFL is trotting out their product for an international audience using a team that not only is 0-7 on the season, but that just lost the final shred of offensive capability. No team has allowed as many points as the Dolphins this year and they have given up 90 points in just the last two games. The only chance that this has to not be an ugly show is that playing in England in a different environment and with the Giants absolutely knowing that they should win this game could mean a bit of salesman golf in play with the Fins somehow looking better than they are. They will still lose of course, but they should come across as more than an entirely inept team.

Update: I am removing David Martin from the projections since he was unable to practice because of his groin strain. I have received numerous emails regarding the higher than perhaps expected projections for the Dolphins players but understand that there is a very low confidence in any projections for the Fins in this game since it is such a different affair than a normal NFL game. The risk is very high that they could fall short and because of this I would not recommend that you start any of their players.

New York Giants (4-2)
Homefield: Giants Stadium
FieldTurf
  Opp Score Spread Over/Under
1 @DAL 35-45 +5.5 44
2 GB 13-35 -2.5 38.5
3 @WAS 24-17 +3.5 40.5
4 PHI 16-3 +2.5 47
5 NYJ 35-24 -3 41
6 @ATL 31-10 -3 43.5
7 SF 33-15 -9.5 40
8 @MIA   -9.5 48
9 BYE - - -
10 DAL 11-Nov SUN 4:15 PM
11 @DET 18-Nov SUN 4:15 PM
12 MIN 25-Nov SUN 1:00 PM
13 @CHI 2-Dec SUN 4:15 PM
14 @PHI 9-Dec SUN 1:00 PM
15 WAS 16-Dec SUN 8:15 PM
16 @BUF 23-Dec SUN 1:00 PM
17 NE 29-Dec SAT 8:15 PM
NYG at LONDON (MIA) Rush Catch Pass
QB Eli Manning     230,2
RB Brandon Jacobs 100,1 10  
RB Derrick Ward 40,1 20  
TE Jeremy Shockey   50,1  
WR Plaxico Burress   80,1  
WR Sinorice Moss   20  
WR Amani Toomer   40  
PK Lawrence Tynes 1 FG 4 XP  
Pregame Notes: After opening the season with two losses, the Giants have now won five in a row and scored over 30 points in their last three efforts. The defense continues to look vastly improved and the team is a definite contender in the NFC East if not the NFC as a conference. The rushing game is healthy, Manning is not killing them with mistakes and the defense is starting to play like a unit to be feared. This is a vacation this week but during their time in London the Giants expect to squeeze in an exhibition-style win over the Dolphins.

Quarterback: While Eli Manning has yet to turn in a game without an interception, he also has always scored at least once each week even if it only meant finding Plaxico Burress simply because he can. His three best yardage games all came on the road and will face his softest match-up of the year. Maybe he cannot get much love and respect in New York but Manning could become the British equivalent of France's Jerry Lewis.

Running Backs: Brandon "brittle" Jacobs battled an ankle sprain last week in practice but still played on Sunday and gained a career high 107 yards on 18 carries with one touchdown and added three catches for 16 yards. He also tweaked his ankle yet again but is expected to make this weekly occurrence anyway. This week should have plenty of chances to run against a weak Fins squad so by the end all the running backs here could have some fantasy value. HC Tom Coughlin is mixing in ample proportions of Derrick Ward and Reuben Droughns (12 carries combined last week) in an effort to keep Jacobs from any more chances to stub his toe than is necessary.

Wide Receivers: The earth shifted off its axis on Sunday when Plaxico Burress only produced 43 yards on five catches and did not score for the first time this year. Amani Toomer had his second touchdown of the season but Burress has eight scores already and needs to get back on track this week in front of the Brits. There is a chance that Steve Smith returns this week but I will stick with Sinorice Moss as the slot guy until it is sure that Smith will play.

Tight Ends: While Jeremy Shockey has not been as productive this year with yardage as seasons past, he has scored in two of the last three games this year - both in home games. He is still good for around 40 yards per week or more but has not had more than 79 yards in any game this season.

Match Against the Defense: This game is hard to predict since it not only has the angle of playing a horrible defense, it is in England where there is some political reasons why this game needs to look competitive. Then again it is being held in a soccer stadium where a 1-0 final score sets half the stands off into drunken carousing for the night (actually any score for that matter). I like the Giants to post decent points here to secure the game and show what the NFL looks like because the Fins offense may not be able to teach anyone anything about NFL football.

The Giants could roll up a big score in this one but how they do that could be any way that they want. Consider the likely suspects to do the damage this week. It is like a reward game of sorts.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points NYG 13 6 11 12 17 4
Preventing Fantasy Points MIA 31 23 28 17 31 18

 

Miami Dolphins (0-7)
Homefield: Dolphins Stadium
Grass
  Opp Score Spread Over/Under
1 @WAS 13-16 +3 35
2 DAL 20-37 +3.5 40.5
3 @NYJ 28-31 +3 35.5
4 OAK 17-35 -3.5 40
5 @HOU 19-22 +5.5 43
6 @CLE 31-41 +4 45
7 NE 28-49 +17 51
8 NYG   +9.5 48
9 BYE - - -
10 BUF 11-Nov SUN 1:00 PM
11 @PHI 18-Nov SUN 1:00 PM
12 @PIT 26-Nov MON 8:30 PM
13 NYJ 2-Dec SUN 1:00 PM
14 @BUF 9-Dec SUN 1:00 PM
15 BAL 16-Dec SUN 1:00 PM
16 @NE 23-Dec SUN 1:00 PM
17 CIN 30-Dec SUN 1:00 PM
MIA vs NYG in London Rush Catch Pass
QB Cleo Lemon 20,1   180,1
RB Patrick Cobbs 30 10  
RB Jesse Chatman 70,1 10  
TE David Martin 40
WR Derek Hagan   30  
WR Marty Booker   50,1  
WR Ted Ginn Jr.   40  
PK Jay Feeley 1 FG 3 XP  

Pregame Notes: In the 42 year history of the Dolphins, they have never been 0-7 before so we can know how long it has been when they go 0-8, 0-9, 0-10, etc.. The season already was on the ropes and the loss of Ronnie Brown is the knock-out punch. This season is over, this team is lost and Cam Cameron may end up with one of those rare "one year was enough, thanks" head coaching careers. If taking Trent "don't touch the melon" Green was a bad idea, then trading away Chris Chambers and losing Ronnie Brown sets this team back to about Division AA college level in ability. We thought the Raiders of 2006 were one of the worst teams of all time - oh no, we were wrong.

Quarterback: It is always darkest before the dawn unless you lose Ronnie Brown in which case it just remains "un-lit coal mine" dark. Cleo Lemon has looked almost passable as a quarterback with Green out and has scored in both the last two games but now that Brown is gone and Chambers is laughing his ass off in San Diego, what to expect from a undrafted quarterback with nothing more than Marty Booker and Derek Hagan for targets? The Fins are going to be fighting with the Rams for that #1 draft pick in April and it should go down to the wire.

Running Backs: Rest in peace, Ronnie, and know that we will look back at your accomplishments this year with admiration even if Cam Cameron would not give you the rock for the first two weeks. Brown is gone for the rest of the season but that's probably a mercy killing because he was in line to be beaten to a pulp each week anyway and now he can heal up for two more months than he would have had if he went for a full season. Jesse Chatman takes over as the starter which would be laughable if this wasn't all such a crying shame. Patrick Cobbs will figure in as well and even Lorenzo Booker should be making a showing soon. Nothing left but to see who may remain next year and there is certainly an opening now for someone to step up.

Wide Receivers: With Chambers gone, Derek Hagan took his first start and turned in a surprisingly decent four catches for 56 yards though most came very late in the game. Marty Booker only had three catches for 28 yards last week against the Pats because now he is the biggest concern to the secondary. Ted Ginn has now delivered on his high draft pick by turning a career high three catches for 37 yards. It was his first game of more than one catch.

Tight Ends: David Martin only had three catches for 22 yards last week but that was much better than usual and should increase as the season progresses. Justin Peele turned in 42 yards on four catches but Martin is the one that the Fins expect to use more. Have to believe that the tight ends here will figure in more as the season goes on and Lemon needs to find the closest receiver.

Match Against the Defense: Without Brown, this offense could completely fall apart but this week is more salesmanship than competition so look for decent numbers here to make it appear to be an actual game. Jesse Chatman starts and could score once while Lemon will look like a great passer to the Brits who just do not play games where you throw the ball. This should be a shutout if played in the states but I like there to be a bit more offense than seems reasonable.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points MIA 12 4 26 13 15 32
Preventing Fantasy Points NYG 24 18 14 26 3 12

The Huddle
WEEK 8
~ 2007 ~
Season Ticket
Sunday
Sunday
Sunday
Monday
On Bye
ARI, ATL
BAL, DAL
KC, SEA


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