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

Prediction: CLE 24, NYJ 20

Update: Laveranues Coles has been limited in practice this week and remains in some question for the game. It is most likely that he will play but I am lowering his projections. He could end up a gametime decision which is a problem since he is a later afternoon game so if you have another option, you would eliminate the risk of relying on Coles playing and being productive. Jerricho Cotchery is not being added to the projections since he is still unlikely to play but his broken finger is fitted with a cast and he has not been ruled out.

The Browns stumbled last week and are only 2-4 on the road while the Jets won big in Miami in their first road win. The Browns need this game to stay in the hunt for a wildcard while the Jets used up all their good mojo last week.

The Browns won 20-13 when the Jets visited during week eight of last year.

Cleveland Browns (7-5)
Homefield: Cleveland Stadium
  Opp Score Spread Over/Under
1 PIT 7-34 +4.5 37
2 CIN 51-45 +7 41.5
3 @OAK 24-26 +3 40.5
4 BAL 27-13 +4 40
5 @NE 17-34 +15.5 48
6 MIA 41-31 -4 45
7 BYE - - -
8 @STL 27-20 -3 43.5
9 SEA 33-30 -1 47
10 @PIT 28-31 +9.5 47.5
11 @BAL 33-30 -2.5 43.5
12 HOU 27-17 -3.5 51
13 @ARI 21-27 +1 51.5
14 @NYJ   -3.5 47.5
15 BUF 16-Dec SUN 1:00 PM
16 @CIN 23-Dec SUN 1:00 PM
17 SF 30-Dec SUN 1:00 PM
CLE vs NYJ Rush Catch Pass
QB Derek Anderson     270,2
RB Jamal Lewis 60,1 30  
TE Kellen Winslow   60,1  
WR Braylon Edwards   80,1  
WR Joe Jurevicius   60  
WR Josh Cribbs   20  
PK Phil Dawson 1 FG 3 XP  
Pregame Notes: The Browns now start their four game steak against teams that do not have a winning record and a nice chance at running the table for what would be an astounding 11-5 record on the year. Road games have been a much bigger challenge though and those games have never produced less than 47 total points thanks to the Cleveland defense. But the Jets are hardly an offensive powerhouse and Cleveland needs this win.

Quarterback: Derek Anderson is on the road for the second straight week but had thrown for two or more scores in four of the last five trips away from Cleveland with nice yardage in each. Typically the rushing game takes a downturn on the road which prompts Anderson to throw more. Anderson already has 24 passing scores on the year and four efforts with three or more touchdowns.

Charlie Frye passed for just 141 yards and one score versus the Jets last year.

Running Backs: Jamal Lewis was hit in the ribs last week but was still able to play in the second half. The hit came on his only touchdown catch of the season and Lewis has been a bigger factor in the passing game over the last month. He has also been less effective in road games this year where he has only once managed to gain more than 62 rushing yards and has scored only two of his nine touchdowns. Lewis at home against a soft opponent has been golden. On the road, much less so regardless of the defense he is facing. He only averages about 54 rushing yards per effort away from Cleveland.

Reuben Droughns was the starter in 2006 and ran for 125 yards and one score against the Jets.

Wide Receivers: Braylon Edwards managed to play last week despite nursing a hamstring injury and apparently injured his elbow as well but still turned in a season high 149 yards and a score on seven receptions. That gives him 12 scores on the season and his first 100+ yard game since week eight. Joe Jurevicius contributes around 50 or 60 yards every game but hasn't been in the endzone since week four.

Edwards only caught two passes for 21 yards against the Jets last year.

Tight Ends: Kellen Winslow only had 35 yards on three catches last week and that points at a troubling reality. He is always far more effective at home than on the road. His last five efforts in Cleveland all had more than 90 receiving yards but he has never had a game over 64 yards in the last five road games. He has scored three times but just never has the same yardage.

Winslow scored once on his seven receptions for 76 yards versus the Jets last season.

Match Against the Defense: The Jets come off their big win in Miami and are positioned for a nice fall this week. Their rushing defense has been horrible in most games this year but Lewis always plays down in road games and even the Jets are unlikely to change that. He has a reasonable shot at one score but his yardage is likely to remain average.

Anderson goes against a secondary that appears to be better than average but only because most teams run all over them and ignore the pass. That is not the Browns way to be sure and Anderson would end with a couple of scores here that will of course favor Winslow and Edwards. Anderson will have to throw more this week to win.

Gaining Fantasy Points CLE 4 11 10 4 5 18
Preventing Fantasy Points NYJ 8 29 13 17 28 24


New York Jets (3-9)
Homefield: Giants Stadium
  Opp Score Spread Over/Under
1 NE 14-38 +6.5 40.5
2 @BAL 13-20 +9.5 33
3 MIA 31-28 +3 35.5
4 @BUF 14-17 -3 37.5
5 @NYG 24-35 +3 41
6 PHI 9-16 +4.5 43.5
7 @CIN 31-38 +5.5 46.5
8 BUF 3-13 -3 37
9 WAS 20-23 +3.5 35.5
10 BYE - - -
11 PIT 19-16 +9.5 40.5
12 @DAL 3-34 +14.5 47
13 @MIA 40-13 +1 38.5
14 CLE   +3.5 47.5
15 @NE 16-Dec SUN 1:00 PM
16 @TEN 23-Dec SUN 4:15 PM
17 KC 30-Dec SUN 8:15 PM
NYJ vs CLE Rush Catch Pass
QB Kellen Clemens     240,2
RB Thomas Jones 90 10  
RB Leon Washington 30 30  
TE Chris Baker   40,1  
WR Laveranues Coles   50  
WR Brad Smith   30,1  
WR Justin McCareins   50  
PK Mike Nugent 2 FG 2 XP  

Pregame Notes: The Jets enjoyed rare offensive success last week in Miami but are only 2-4 at home this year. The remaining schedule is fairly brutal with this game followed by road trips to New England and Tennessee and what is worse is that no player has really emerged to give hope to 2008. Kellen Clemens so far as the look of an eventual average quarterback and Thomas Jones has mostly been a bitter flop as a free agent acquisition. Like last year, the only aspect of the offense that has lent a spark is Leon Washington who will never be the primary back.

Quarterback: Kellen Clemens comes off one of his better games with 236 yards and one score in Miami but he has never had more than just one touchdown in a game this year. He gets sacked at least three times in most games and almost always throws at least one interception but he is still learning his job and has made fewer mistakes than Chad Pennington had, even if that comes at the expense of better production.

Pennington only passed for 108 yards against the Browns last year.

Running Backs: Roll out the red carpet, Thomas Jones is returning to New York with his first touchdown of the season only a short 12 games into his career as a Jet. Granted, he only had 75 yards on 24 carries and was upstaged by Leon Washington who scored twice in that game, but at least the primary back has finally changed the scoreboard for the first time. Jones has only averaged around 70 yards per game and sports a 3.7 yard per carry average.

Leon Washington made the difference last week with two rushing scores and 68 yards on only ten carries. That was reflective of the ample lead by the Jets though since he had never had that many runs in any game this year and usually only settles for four or five relief carries.

The Jets only gained 67 total rushing yards in Cleveland last season.

Wide Receivers: The passing attack was happy to get Laveranues Coles back from his high ankle sprain last week but he only had five catches for 69 yards and Jerricho Cotchery appears gone for the season with a broken finger. That leaves Brad Smith and Justin McCareins to help out which should appear to be acceptable this week against a soft Cleveland defense. But neither wideout has gained more than 51 yards in a game this year and even that was from the lone catch made by McCareins just last week.

Both Coles and Cotchery had about 40 receiving yards against the Browns in 2006.

Tight Ends: Chris Baker is about as standard for a tight end as they come. He can be as good as 50 yards in a game and usually ends up with about 30 yards. He has scored only once in the last ten games.

Match Against the Defense: No doubt that the Browns defense gives away nice yards and scores but the Jets are hardly the team to make a lot of use of the softer game. Jones did just score last week but the Browns have only allowed three rushing scores by a running back all year. He should manage decent yardage this week but a score is a tall order given his past.

Clemens faces the softest secondary of his rookie year and whatever he does is as good as it will get. All teams throw for at least one score against them and the Browns can be beaten by just about any receiver. I like Clemens to have his first multiple touchdown game here which should favor Baker and Coles unless Brad Smith takes it away.

Gaining Fantasy Points NYJ 24 32 15 26 13 19
Preventing Fantasy Points CLE 32 10 32 32 31 13

The Huddle
~ 2007 ~
Season Ticket
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