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

Prediction: JAC 17, IND 27

Update: So much for Harrison being ready for week 13. He has not practiced this week and once again is expected to not play this week. I am removing him and inserting Craphonso Thorpe. Anthony Gonzalez will take Harrison's place and Thorpe will fill the slot role.

This is the other big game of the week. While the Packers and Cowboys battle for the #1 seed in the NFC, the 8-3 Jaguars head to Indianapolis where the 9-2 Colts are only one game ahead in the AFC South and have never been as vulnerable. And the Jaguars are 4-1 on the road though the Colts won 29-7 in Jacksonville back in week seven. If the Colts lose this game, might as well pack up the AFC until the Super Bowl because no team will challenge the Patriots.

Jacksonville Jaguars (8-3)
Homefield: J'ville Municipal Stadium
  Opp Score Spread Over/Under
1 TEN 10-13 -6.5 37.5
2 ATL 13-7 -10.5 34.5
3 @DEN 23-14 +3 35.5
4 BYE - - -
5 @KC 17-7 -2 35
6 HOU 37-17 -7 37
7 IND 7-29 +3.5 45
8 @TB 24-23 -4 32.5
9 @NO 24-41 +3.5 40
10 @TEN 28-13 +4 35
11 SD 24-17 -3 41
12 BUF 36-14 -7.5 36
13 @IND   +7 44.5
14 CAR 9-Dec SUN 1:00 PM
15 @PIT 16-Dec SUN 1:00 PM
16 OAK 23-Dec SUN 1:00 PM
17 @HOU 30-Dec SUN 1:00 PM
JAX at IND Rush Catch Pass
QB David Garrard 20   210,1
RB Fred Taylor 60    
RB Maurice Jones-Drew 40,1 30  
TE Marcedes Lewis   20  
WR Dennis Northcutt   50  
WR Ernest Wilford   30  
WR Reggie Williams   40,1  
PK Josh Scobee 1 FG 2 XP  
Pregame Notes: The Jaguars are on a three game winning streak and even losing their starting quarterback for three weeks was enough to keep them down. The offense is rolling up 24+ points in each of the last five games while the defense has been in top form lately. A win here would mean the Jaguars have their first shot at the division title in years but a loss is hardly enough to keep them from being a near-guaranteed wild card this year.

Quarterback: David Garrard has been back for two weeks now and the Jaguars passing game has been good enough in most games with Garrard as the starter. He was on a one touchdown per game streak but has scored five times over his last three full games and more important than that - he has yet to throw an interception this year. Not one in 209 pass attempts. He's always been a lock for 200 yards and a score but recently has been scoring twice and comes off a career best game of 296 passing yards against the Bills.

Garrard only threw for 72 yards against the Colts in week seven and Quinn Gray came in to add 56 yards.

Running Backs: With Garrard as the starter, the rushing game fares better and even Fred Taylor comes off his first 100 rushing yard game of the year when he ran 14 times for 104 yards against the Bills thanks to a 50 yard touchdown sprint. Taylor typically has around 50 yards in tough games and up to 80 in the softer match-ups.

Maurice Jones-Drew has scored once in the last three games and has seven touchdowns on the year - all rushing. He has not been as featured in the passing game as last year but already has two efforts over 100 yards this year. His yardage totals have been lower lately with four of his last five efforts totaling less than 60 yards but he's always a threat to score.

Taylor gained 55 yards on 11 carries against the Colts in week seven while Jones-Drew gained 52 yards on 13 runs and scored the only Jags touchdown in the game.

Wide Receivers: The passing numbers are distributed among all receivers and Dennis Northcutt remains the most consistent player but even he has turned in several sub-40 yard games this year and only has two scores on the season. Ernest WIlford is the split end that never scores while Reggie Williams leads all Jaguars receivers with six touchdowns. He rarely has more than two catches in a game and last week only had one catch - for a 59-yard touchdown. Sandwiched around his most recent scoring games were efforts of 13, 17 and 0 yards so he's still not reliable.

No Jaguars' wide receiver had more than 53 yards versus the Colts this year.

Tight Ends: Marcedes Lewis comes off a season high game of five catches for 57 yards but that trailed two games with only one catch. He's an occasional feature in the offense but only has one score so far.

Match Against the Defense: The Jaguars have been playing much better offense since the first meeting with the Colts but this game will be on the road and the Colts are healthier - though without Dwight Freeney. The best chance here for the Jaguars is to focus on their rushing game and Jones-Drew should manage a score here. The yardage will be a function of how quickly the Jags fall behind but expect moderate gains by both Taylor and Jones-Drew.

Garrard has been better as the season progresses and should play much better this time around. But only two quarterbacks have managed more than one score as a visitor so look for decent yardage and that one score which should favor Wilford by position but he's just too unlikely to catch it. As unreliable as he is, Williams is the best chance for a passing score here but he could just as easily get blanked this week.

Gaining Fantasy Points JAC 18 4 20 15 19 14
Preventing Fantasy Points IND 4 9 1 5 3 8


Indianapolis Colts (9-2)
Homefield: RCA Dome
  Opp Score Spread Over/Under
1 NO 41-10 -6 51.5
2 @TEN 22-20 -7 46
3 @HOU 30-24 -6 47.5
4 DEN 38-20 -10 46.5
5 TB 33-14 -9 45
6 BYE - - -
7 @JAC 29-7 -3.5 45
8 @CAR 31-7 -6.5 45
9 NE 20-24 +5.5 56.5
10 @SD 21-23 -3.5 49
11 KC 13-10 -15 44
12 @ATL 31-13 -12 45
13 JAC   -7 44.5
14 @BAL 9-Dec SUN 8:15 PM
15 @OAK 16-Dec SUN 4:05 PM
16 HOU 23-Dec SUN 1:00 PM
17 TEN 30-Dec SUN 1:00 PM
IND vs JAC Rush Catch Pass
QB Peyton Manning     250,2
RB Joseph Addai 100,1 20  
TE Dallas Clark   50,1  
WR Marvin Harrison 40
WR Craphonso Thorpe   20  
WR Reggie Wayne   100,1  
WR Anthony Gonzalez   60  
PK Adam Vinatieri 2 FG 3 XP  

Pregame Notes: The Colts finally managed to get the offense back to using the scoreboard with 31 points in Atlanta and having ten days to prepare for the visiting Jaguars has been a blessing since this will be the toughest remaining game. This is also the most important game for the Jaguars as well who are only one game behind the Colts in the AFC South. This is slated to be the week that Marvin Harrison returns and none too soon for such an important game.

Quarterback: While Peyton Manning only had 163 passing yards against the visiting Chiefs when he had so many receivers injured, he came up with 272 yards and three scores in Atlanta and is due to get Harrison back this week. Manning only has two games over 300 yards this year and with 19 passing scores in 11 games, he's well behind his normal pace but he's never had the misfortune of being the much-targeted world champs that has undergone extensive injury problems this year.

Manning passed for 259 yards and one score in Jacksonville during week seven.

Running Backs: Joseph Addai was banged up again last week though he returned to the game. He settled for only ten carries for 44 yards and a score while Kenton Keith had 17 runs for 74 yards to not only keep Addai from further injury, but to keep him fresh for this week when he will be needed more. I will assume that Addai will be 100% healthy for this week and update if warranted. Addai suffered what was later deemed a neck sprain.

Addai ran for 85 yards on 16 carries in Jacksonville while Kenton Keith added 56 yards on 15 runs and scored once.

Wide Receivers: HC Tony Dungy has reiterated last week that Marvin Harrison is due to return after missing six of the last seven games with a balky knee injury. He may not be needed again during the regular season but this week ensures that the Colts take the AFC South and Harrison will play if at all possible. Dungy said on Monday that he's back to "unsure" if Harrison will play. I will assume he can but update as warranted.

While he has been out, Reggie Wayne has been a great help to the offense and is working on a career best year. He already has seven scores and four games over 100 yards. He is on pace for 1450 yards on the season.

Aaron Moorehead was placed on injured reserve but Anthony Gonzalez returned last week and posted his career best game of six receptions for 105 yards. He is still waiting for his first NFL touchdown.

Wayne turned in nine receptions for 131 yards in Jacksonville and Harrison was out that week.

Tight Ends: Dallas Clark also returned to form after sub-par numbers since week seven which included a concussion. He had 49 yards and one touchdown in Atlanta and had been scoring each game beginning week two through seven.

Clark caught four passes for 66 yards and one score against the Jaguars this season.

Match Against the Defense: This is a repeat game and the Colts already handled the Jaguars earlier this year. Addai had 85 yards in Jacksonville so look for better numbers at home if he is healthy. The Jags are tough on the run but have allowed seven rushing scores which should get one for Addai unless Kenton Keith comes in to steal it.

Manning would obviously like to have Harrison back but already beat the Jags without him. Expect a solid game here from Dallas Clark with a score since that is a weakness of the Jags and Wayne already has been effective against the them in the first meeting.

Gaining Fantasy Points IND 6 3 16 3 10 12
Preventing Fantasy Points JAC 23 14 14 25 9 4

The Huddle
~ 2007 ~
Season Ticket
Sunday night

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