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

Prediction: PHI 16, MIN 17

Here's a sure to be messy game between two teams that are down on their luck - and offensive ability outside of one running back who is saving the team from complete offensive ineptitude. This is a true coin flip game because the Eagles two wins came against very soft defenses - not present this week. And the Vikings could not successfully complete a pass against the junior varsity at a school for wayward girls. This all smacks of a low scoring game that is decided on a defensive score so it's about which team makes the least mistakes. Again - get out your coin.

Update: L.J. Smith has returned to practice this week and could get some playing time but it will almost certainly be limited and not with considering in the best case. Tavaris Jackson has been limited in practice this week because of a fractured index finger on his throwing hand. He is expected to sit this week and I am adding Kelly Holcomb into the projections and that should result in an actual passing touchdown.

Chester Taylor has been limited this week because his groin has been bothering him. I am lowering his projections.

Philadelphia Eagles (2-4)
Homefield: Lincoln Financial Field
  Opp Score Spread Over/Under
1 @GB 13-16 -3 43.5
2 WAS 12-20 +7 38.5
3 DET 56-21 -6.5 44.5
4 @NYG 3-16 -2.5 47
5 BYE - - -
6 @NYJ 16-9 -4.5 43.5
7 CHI 16-19 -4.5 40.5
8 @MIN   -1 37.5
9 DAL 4-Nov SUN 8:15 PM
10 @WAS 11-Nov SUN 1:00 PM
11 MIA 18-Nov SUN 1:00 PM
12 @NE 25-Nov SUN 8:15 PM
13 SEA 2-Dec SUN 1:00 PM
14 NYG 9-Dec SUN 1:00 PM
15 @DAL 16-Dec SUN 4:15 PM
16 @NO 23-Dec SUN 1:00 PM
17 BUF 30-Dec SUN 1:00 PM
PHI at MIN Rush Catch Pass
QB Donovan McNabb     240,1
RB Brian Westbrook 60 60  
TE Matt Schobel   10  
WR Reggie Brown   40  
WR Kevin Curtis   100,1  
WR Jason Avant   20  
PK David Akers 3 FG 1 XP  
Pregame Notes: It appeared that the Eagles would get their second win in a row but the Bears drove down in the final two minutes and actually made it look rather easy. The amazing fact about the Eagles is that if you ignore the Lions game -and you should - the Eagles have not scored more than 16 points in a game this year. After this week they host the Cowboys and then travel to Washington. They get the freebie by hosting the Dolphins but then play in New England. Those 16 points may be hard to produce for the coming month.

Quarterback: While Donovan McNabb has improved his yardage totals in the last couple of games, he has not produced the points. McNabb only has seven touchdowns on the season and four of those came in one game. On the road he only has two scores in three games while being sacked a total of 16 times. McNabb has lost all semblance of any mobility and playing in Minnesota this week probably won't help him stay on his feet against a team that has 16 sacks on the season and seven interceptions and five forced fumbles on quarterbacks. At first it was like a weekly waiting game thinking that the old McNabb was going to show up. Against the Lions it appeared he did but after three successive bad games, McNabb '07 isn't worth more than being a fantasy back-up you hope you never have to use. He should be ecstatic that Jeff Garcia is gone and the temptation is not there to change quarterbacks.

Running Backs: The Eagles are little more than Brian Westbrook. He has totaled over 100 yards in every game this year and could score if the Eagles ever found themselves near the goal line. He has rushed for no less than 79 yards in any game this year and always factors in big as a receiver. Other than the one game when Westbrook was out, Correll Buckhalter has not been a factor.

Wide Receivers: Kevin Curtis is the only player here with any shred of fantasy value and even he turns in more mediocre games than good. Last week he only had five catches for 62 yards but that was good enough to lead the team and he does have four of the five touchdowns caught by a wideout this year. The revival of Reggie Brown has been put on permanent hold after it was noticed that five of his six games had less than 45 receiving yards. This week the wideouts will have a chance to since but there's little confidence that McNabb can get them the ball or that they will catch it if he does.

Tight Ends: Matt Schobel replaced L.J. Smith last week and caught a touchdown which is pretty significant since it was the only one by a tight end this year and one of only seven passing scores by the Eagles this year.

Match Against the Defense: When Marion Barber scored against the Vikings last week, it was the first rushing score allowed by the Vikings. No opposing runner has gained more than 55 rushing yards in Minnesota this year so expect Westbrook to shine with receptions which could be big this week.

McNabb faces a secondary that is the weak link and that has allowed at least one passing score in each of the last six games against the Vikings. Some teams have great yardage as well but McNabb has struggled this year and will be the object of a good pass rush. Expect one score here and anything more would be a big success for a quarterback who really needs it.

Gaining Fantasy Points PIT 8 1 6 13 1 15
Preventing Fantasy Points MIN 28 4 29 27 17 14


Minnesota Vikings (2-4)
Homefield: Metrodome
  Opp Score Spread Over/Under
1 ATL 24-3 -3 36
2 @DET 17-20 +3 42.5
3 @KC 10-13 +3 33.5
4 GB 16-23 +1 38
5 BYE - - -
6 @CHI 34-31 +5 35.5
7 @DAL 14-24 +9.5 46
8 PHI   +1 37.5
9 SD 4-Nov SUN 1:00 PM
10 @GB 11-Nov SUN 1:00 PM
11 OAK 18-Nov SUN 1:00 PM
12 @NYG 25-Nov SUN 1:00 PM
13 DET 2-Dec SUN 1:00 PM
14 @SF 9-Dec SUN 4:05 PM
15 CHI 17-Dec MON 8:30 PM
16 WAS 23-Dec SUN 1:00 PM
17 @DEN 30-Dec SUN 4:15 PM
MIN vs PHI Rush Catch Pass
QB Tarvaris Jackson 20 150
QB Kelly Holcomb     200,1
RB Chester Taylor 30 10  
RB Adrian Peterson 110,1 40  
TE Visanthe Shiancoe   10  
WR Troy Williamson   30  
WR Bobby Wade   50  
WR Sidney Rice   50,1  
PK Ryan Longwell 1 FG 2 XP  

Pregame Notes: The Vikings fell in Dallas after curiously limiting Adrian Peterson to only a dozen carries and the passing game has all but disappeared now that Tarvaris Jackson is the starter. But HC Brad Childress is comfortable with Jackson and Taylor as the starters while all Kelly Holcomb and Peterson do is produce when given the chance. The glorious win in Chicago was followed by an offensive flop in Dallas and now the Vikes are quickly sliding backwards again. As good as Peterson has been, be even more impressed realizing that he is the only player the defense cares about.

Quarterback: The Vikings continue to stand by Tarvaris Jackson as the starter despite his more than lackluster results this season. Last week in Dallas he only completed six of 19 passes for 72 yards. He has never turned in more than 166 passing yards in a game this year and that was against the Lions. And he threw four interceptions in that game. This passing attack is likely the worse in the league with Jackson under center. It is like the old Vick Falcons without all that running by Vick.

Running Backs: Adrian Peterson's string of three 100 yard games ended in Dallas when he only turned in 63 yards but that came on only 12 carries and he did score the lone Vikings offensive touchdown. Chester Taylor was given 10 carries and gained 47 yards yards but this offense is all about Peterson since he has six touchdowns and four games over 100 rushing yards on the year - and he is not even a starter. The Vikings have only played in two home games this year and in both Peterson scored and easily topped the century mark in total yardage.

Wide Receivers: If you have any Vikings wideouts on rosters in your league, you must have lazy owners that are not aware of the waiver wire. With Jackson under center, the only - THE ONLY - good thing that has happened was one long bomb scored by Troy Williamson. That is four games played, one good play.

Tight Ends: They exist only to make the wideouts seem productive.

Match Against the Defense: The Eagles rushing defense has been solid this year in only allowing two rushing scores but the reality is that they have not faced a good running back yet this season. Portis scored once and had 69 yards in Philly and Thomas Jones ran for 130 yards in week six. Otherwise they have faced DET, CHI and GB that do not run well. Derrick Ward had 80 yards against them on 19 carries. Look for a 100+ yard game by Peterson this week with a score and enough Chester Taylor to make you mad.

Jackson should also cross the 100 yard threshold (in passing) and not score. This will be the worst passing attack that the Eagles have defended against .

Gaining Fantasy Points MIN 30 2 31 29 22 1
Preventing Fantasy Points PHI 7 6 19 5 23 25

The Huddle
~ 2007 ~
Season Ticket
On Bye

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