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

Prediction: TEN 20, KCC 10

Update: Tony Gonzalez was limited in practice on Wednesday but returned for a full workload on Thursday. His ankle is slightly sprained but should not effect him this week. Kolby Smith was also limited on Wednesday and back on Thursday with his sprained knee and is also expected to play. No reason to change the projections. Larry Johnson continues on a limited basis in practices but is not likely to play this week at the least.

This is going to be a cold game with temperatures well below freezing and the Titans are only 3-3 on the road but the Chiefs have lost their last six games and are only 2-4 at home. The Titans still have a shot at a wildcard that is fading fast but the Chiefs are just fading.

Tennessee Titans (7-6)
Homefield: LP Field
  Opp Score Spread Over/Under
1 @JAC 13-10 +6.5 37.5
2 IND 20-22 +7 46
3 @NO 31-14 +4 45
4 BYE - - -
5 ATL 20-13 -8 41
6 @TB 10-13 +2.5 37
7 @HOU 38-36 +2 37.5
8 OAK 13-9 -7 41
9 CAR 20-7 -4 40
10 JAC 13-28 -4 35
11 @DEN 20-34 +2.5 38
12 @CIN 6-35 -1.5 42
13 HOU 28-20 -3.5 43
14 SD 17-23 +1 41
15 @KC   -4 34
16 NYJ 23-Dec SUN 4:15 PM
17 @IND 30-Dec SUN 1:00 PM
TEN at KC Rush Catch Pass
QB Vince Young 20   180
RB Chris Brown 50,1 10  
RB Lendale White 80,1 20  
TE Bo Scaife   30  
WR Justin Gage   50  
WR Eric Moulds   20  
WR Roydell Williams   30  
PK Rob Bironas 2 FG 2 XP  
Pregame Notes: The Titans at 7-6 and behind the Browns (8-5) and Jaguars (9-4) and are tied with the Bills (7-6) for third best record in the AFC going for a wildcard. This week is a challenge if only because it is on the road and next week at home against the Jets coming off whatever the Pats do to them is a likely win. And with some luck, the Colts will not care what happens in week 17 since it will not affect their playoff status one way of the other. But the TItans now have to win out AND have the Browns lose a game to head to tie breakers. It's a tall order now but all the Titans can do is try to win and accept what happens.

Quarterback: Vince Young was knocked out of the game last week by LB Shawn Merriman (who was later knocked himself... hmmm) but Young returned to play and had sore ribs after the game. He is expected to play this week but could be a little limited. Last week was his first time below 240 passing yards since week nine and the ripple effect was felt by all receivers.

Running Backs: LenDale White was expected to be a little limited last week because of his injured finger but he ended with 30 carries for 113 yards and one score and even had two catches for 24 yards. Chris Brown was planned for more playing time but only has five carries for 16 yards and one score. That is favorable for all White owners relying on him this week since Brown was not given more than a relief role and White was relied on heavily in the loss to the Chargers. He had not been above 13 carries since week nine.

Wide Receivers: The only Titans wideout with any fantasy value is Justin Gage who was held to only one catch for 12 yards by the Chargers after four straight games over 60 receiving yards. Even with Young's passing explosion over the last month, no wideout really benefited beyond Roydell Williams having a score and 74 yards against the Texans. There have only been six receiving touchdowns by the Titans wideouts this year and only one effort that exceeded 100 yards. This unit still is one of the weaker in the league and relies on Gage to have what would only be an average showing on most other NFL teams.

Tight Ends: Not unlike Gage, Bo Scaife has been pretty consistent around 40 receiving yards in most games but only came up with two receptions for 14 yards last Sunday with Young ailing. Scaife has been more consistent than any other wideout other than Gage.

Match Against the Defense: The Chiefs have a very strong secondary that should hold Young to only moderate numbers at best this week - think Young of early season - and he is banged up and may not run as much as well. It's likely that the Titans have no passing scores here since the Chiefs have only given up seven passing touchdowns in Kansas City this season.

Where the Titans, and everyone else for that matter, will need to attack is with the run. Seven different runners have topped 100 rushing yards and the Chiefs have given up ten rushing scores to date and the Chiefs average 120 rushing yards allowed to opponents this year. That will be split between both Brown and White but should come in with at least moderate fantasy numbers for White and one score if not more.

Gaining Fantasy Points TEN 23 14 26 26 5 16
Preventing Fantasy Points KC 5 24 8 14 25 31


Kansas City Chiefs (4-9)
Homefield: Arrowhead Stadium
  Opp Score Spread Over/Under
1 @HOU 3-20 +3 38
2 @CHI 10-20 +12 34.5
3 MIN 13-10 -3 33.5
4 @SD 30-16 +13 38.5
5 JAC 7-17 +2 35
6 CIN 27-20 +3 42
7 @OAK 12-10 +3 37.5
8 BYE - - -
9 GB 22-33 -2.5 38.5
10 DEN 11-27 -3 37.5
11 @IND 10-13 +15 44
12 OAK 17-20 -5.5 34.5
13 SD 10-24 +3.5 43
14 @DEN 7-41 +6.5 37.5
15 TEN   +4 34
16 @DET 23-Dec SUN 1:00 PM
17 @NYJ 30-Dec SUN 8:15 PM
KC vs TEN Rush Catch Pass
QB Brodie Croyle     160,1
RB Kolby Smith 50 10  
TE Tony Gonzalez   50  
WR Eddie Kennison   20  
WR Samie Parker   30  
WR Dwayne Bowe   50,1  
PK John Carney 1 FG 1 XP  

Pregame Notes: The Chiefs not only have lost their last six games, it is getting worse. What was once only three point losses have been a deficit of 17-65 over the last two games. The Chiefs have not scored more than 17 points since week nine though the defense has held their own at least at home. Now Kolby Smith is questionable this week with a sprained knee. This is the final home game at Arrowhead but it's not shaping up to be a positive experience.

Quarterback: Brodie Croyle returned last week but only completed 15 of 29 passes for 132 yards and a score in Denver. He has never had more than one score in a game so far and never had more than 169 passing yards. This is all a learning experience for Croyle at the end of a lost season but so far the only lesson has been "lower your expectations".

Running Backs: Kolby Smith had been pretty solid in his first two starts - both at home - when he gained 150 yards and two scores against the Raiders and then had 83 yards against the Chargers. But last week in Denver he was held to only 12 yards on 13 carries and suffered a sprained knee. He is expected to be questionable to play this week and it will depend on practice and treatment as to whether he sill play. If he cannot, then Gilbert Harris will take over to complete the folly of this season. So far over three games, Harris had only gained 13 yards on eight carries.

I will assume that a limited Smith will play and update as needed.

Wide Receivers: The only wideout of any fantasy note here is Dwayne Bowe who has been on the decline since week ten with Croyle was made starter. He has only scored once since week four and his yardage has been on the wane with only around 50 yards per game for the last three weeks. By comparison to the other wideouts, that is still wildly productive.

Tight Ends: Croyle had killed the fantasy value of Tony Gonzalez and the one week that Huard got the start, Gonzo shot back up to ten catches for 140 yards. Last week with Croyle back, he still had a respectable seven receptions for 76 yards and one score so there is still hope that Croyle can make use of the best receiving tight end that has ever played the game.

Match Against the Defense: The Titans have been far softer against the run in the last month but in part that is thanks to playing DEN, SD, HOU and JAC. The Chiefs rushing attack is currently the worst in fantasy terms and Smith is banged up at best and will let Harris get mauled at worst. The Titans are solid against the run - much more so than the Chiefs can hope to have success against.

Croyle faces a secondary that is very good which does not describe what Croyle is yet. Since it is a home game, look for the one passing score that strongly favors Bowe and for Gonzalez to take another downturn against the #5 defenses against tight ends.

Gaining Fantasy Points KC 29 32 31 4 30 25
Preventing Fantasy Points TEN 7 15 18 5 9 14

The Huddle
~ 2007 ~
Season Ticket
Sunday Late

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