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

Prediction: MIA 7, PHI 27

Update: John Beck has been given the nod this week and the new era has begun. He could have been given a better situation for his first start (like playing on another team) but he starts his NFL career this week.

Are you my Mommy? Not only did I read that book 100 times to my toddler, it is also the question the Dolphins are asking each opponent this season because so far they have all been "Your Daddy". The Eagles at home need this win and the Fins are just the team to give it to them. Could be a trap game but the Eagles are not good enough to take anyone less than seriously.

Miami Dolphins (0-9)
Homefield: Dolphins Stadium
  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 10-13 +9.5 48
9 BYE - - -
10 BUF 10-13 +3 41
11 @PHI   +10 40.5
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 at PHI Rush Catch Pass
QB John Beck     150,1
QB Cleo Lemon 20 140,1
RB Jesse Chatman 50 20  
TE David Martin   30,1  
WR Derek Hagan   30  
WR Marty Booker   20  
WR Ted Ginn Jr.   20  
PK Jay Feeley   1 XP  

Pregame Notes: It is really sort of sad in a way. The Dolphins have lost all nine games this year but five of them were by just three points. Without Ronnie Brown around, the offense cannot post more than 10 points in a game and that could see the Fins challenge that 0-16 mark.

Wonder if they members of the team would meet annually like the 1972 Dolphins? Each year they could have Cam Cameron on ESPN until the last remaining winless team beats someone. Many of these players may have little else to look forward to in their post-football lives that could be starting as early as next spring..

Quarterback: Two non-Ronnie Brown starts and Cleo Lemon is hanging right around 140 yards per game with one score because eventually the opponent no longer cares and it's not like the Dolphins are going to win anyway. So far Lemon's best game is still less than Trent Green's worst one.

The Fins may opt to finally start the rookie John Beck. HC Cam Cameron said he was undecided about who the starter would be this week and will decide on Wednesday. I am assuming Lemon keeps the job but will update if Beck becomes the starter.

Running Backs: Jesse Chatman certainly looked like a suitable replacement last week when he gained 124 yards on 27 carries against the visiting Bills and he no doubt gets the benefit of opponents not exactly getting super-motivated to play the Fins. He gained 79 yards on 16 carries in London as well and looks like the team is settled on him. One caveat here though - he has not had a carry in a road game yet (London doesn't count for many reasons) so this week he faces a bigger challenge.

Wide Receivers: Imagine Derek Hagan being the top wideout over the last two weeks of Lemon as the starter because he totaled four catches for 48 yards. Welcome to the new Dolphins.

Tight Ends: David Martin missed the London game but returned last week to catch four passes for 34 yards. That makes him the lead receiver for the Dolphins now and even that doesn't have any fantasy relevance. If any player is going to have a decent game, it is likely Martin but that doesn't mean it has to happen.

Match Against the Defense: Chatman has ran relatively well in his brief time as a starter and the Eagles have given up a few big games to running backs this year but in Philly, no opposing runner has topped 69 rushing yards so far and Chatman is unlikely to challenge that mark.

Lemon faces a secondary that has been the weaker spot but if he throws more than one touchdown here it will be astounding. The only hope is that the Eagles get a big lead and let up later in the game. As always, bench your Miami receivers this week. In fact, why would you even have them still?

Gaining Fantasy Points MIA 15 8 28 15 17 32
Preventing Fantasy Points PHI 18 6 23 19 23 16


Philadelphia Eagles (4-5)
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 23-16 -1 37.5
9 DAL 17-38 +3 46
10 @WAS 33-25 +2.5 37.5
11 MIA   -10 40.5
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 vs MIA Rush Catch Pass
QB Donovan McNabb 20   250,2
RB Brian Westbrook 80,1 50  
TE L.J. Smith   30  
WR Reggie Brown   80,1  
WR Kevin Curtis   70,1  
WR Jason Avant   10  
PK David Akers 2 FG 3 XP  

Pregame Notes: Big road win over the Skins last week keeps the dim postseason hopes alive for the Eagles and this game should add a little more fuel to the flickering flame. There is virtually no chance that the Eagles will get caught looking past this game because week 12 means a road trip to New England and Andy Reid still has not told the team about it. McNabb has quieted his critics after last week and the Dolphins are coming to town. La Dolce Vita.

Quarterback: Donovan McNabb caught fire last week when he threw for 251 yards and four touchdowns in Washington despite only having 240 yards and no scores when the Redskins were the visitors in week two. That makes five consecutive games with at least one touchdown for McNabb who also had a season high of seven rushes for 37 yards. He had never had more than 18 rushing yards in any other game this year and the lack of his mobility was considered one of his biggest problems. If McNabb can start showing more running ability, it can only help this offense.

Running Backs: Brian Westbrook is the engine to this offense - pure and simple. Last week he ran for 100 yards on 20 carries, caught five passes for 83 yards and scored three touchdowns including two via receptions. His four receiving scores are #1 for NFL running backs as is his 518 receiving yards. He ranks second in catches only to Reggie Bush who has played one more game. Westy has been particularly effective in the last three weeks when he had scored six of his nine touchdowns for the year. He rising up and resuming his role as one of the most productive fantasy backs in the league.

Wide Receivers: Kevin Curtis hasn't scored since week six and comes off his worst game of the year with only 20 yards on three catches. He still remains a good option for McNabb but has been supplanted by Reggie Brown over the last month as the primary wideout. Brown scored his first touchdown of the season last week and has been good for around 60 yards per game for the last month. While this unit has a handful of big games, in most weeks they take a backseat to Westbrook and L.J. Smith is starting to return to form which will not help these numbers.

Tight Ends: L.J. Smith had two catches for 34 yards against the Cowboys and last week turned in four receptions and 49 yards with one score against the Skins. His absence this year was never filled by Matt Schobel and it's encouraging for the offense to have him back to productive playing.

Match Against the Defense: The Eagles won't take the Dolphins too lightly since they have lost their last two games by only a field goal but this is a home stand against a team that the Eagles should take down handily if the recent progress of the offense was real. Of course Westbrook will have a good game here with one score and a shot at two touchdowns.

McNabb is hardly so comfortable that he won't want to have a good game in front of the home town fans. Look for two scores here that should be split between Curtis and Brown unless Smith snags one.

Gaining Fantasy Points PHI 11 3 15 26 11 28
Preventing Fantasy Points MIA 30 22 24 7 28 14

The Huddle
~ 2007 ~
Season Ticket
Sunday night

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