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

Prediction: NYG 17, BUF 13

Update: Brandon Jacobs may appear on the injury report but he has been practicing fully this week and will be good to go. Sinorice Moss has been held out both days this week because of his back and may not play. I am replacing him with Steve Smith in the projections since Smith should see increased time this week. As always, Plaxico Burress was held out of practices this week but is expected to play.

Robert Royal has been held out by the Bills this week with a sore knee but has not been ruled out. I am leaving him in the projections at his minimal level but he may not play.

The Giants stumbled last week but their 9-5 record is still two games better than any other NFC team hunting for a wildcard. The Giants are 6-1 on the road this year and face the Bills who are 4-3 at home. The Bills remain in contention for a wildcard in the AFC but it is so unlikely to happen to not even consider it. A reality playing in New York - this week the forecast called for a chance of rain and 20+ mile an hour winds and both teams lost last week in bad conditions.

New York Giants (9-5)
Homefield: Giants Stadium
  Opp Score Spread Over/Under
1 @DAL 35-45 +5.5 44
2 GB 13-35 -2.5 38.5
3 @WAS 24-17 +3.5 40.5
4 PHI 16-3 +2.5 47
5 NYJ 35-24 -3 41
6 @ATL 31-10 -3 43.5
7 SF 33-15 -9.5 40
8 @MIA 13-10 -9.5 48
9 BYE - - -
10 DAL 20-31 +1.5 49
11 @DET 16-10 -2.5 49.5
12 MIN 17-41 -7 41
13 @CHI 21-16 -1.5 43
14 @PHI 16-13 +3 42.5
15 WAS 16-22 -4.5 40
16 @BUF   -3 34.5
17 NE 29-Dec SAT 8:15 PM
NYG at BUF Rush Catch Pass
QB Eli Manning     170,1
RB Brandon Jacobs 100,1 20  
TE Kevin Boss   20  
WR Plaxico Burress   50,1  
WR Amani Toomer   20  
WR Steve Smith   30  
WR Sinorice Moss 40
PK Lawrence Tynes 1 FG 2 XP  
Pregame Notes: The weather has been an issue with the Giants and that may not be changing soon since the final game will be at home against the Patriots. The Giants just need to win this one to secure the wildcard and make the week 17 game against the Patriots immaterial. But the loss of Shockey with a broken fibula means that Manning is down to Plaxico Burress and no one as receivers. The rushing game has been solid with Jacobs but on the road this week is bound to be a major challenge.

Quarterback: On the plus side, Eli Manning has scored in every game this year. On the other hand, the last seven games have only had a single touchdown while Manning has been wildly inconsistent in yardage. Though he plays in a very weather sensitive stadium, he hasn't proven yet to be capable of playing in adverse conditions and only completed 18 of 52 passes last Sunday. He is following the pattern he set the last two years with late season slides which could be weather related to some degree.

Running Backs: Brandon Jacobs was built for a bad weather game and rumbled for a season high 130 yards on 25 carries against the Redskins and he added three catches for 30 yards. Unfortunately, he was thrown ten passes and dropped pretty much the remaining seven not unlike other Giants players in the game but that won't endear him to HC Tom Coughlin as a viable option out of the backfield. It is an area left as a big void when Tiki Barber retired. Jacobs has not scored a rushing touchdown since back in week seven.

Wide Receivers: While Plaxico Burress had a very nice game in week 14 of 136 yards and a score against the Eagles, he was little help in the wind last week with only three catches on 12 passes thrown to him. Certainly not all were his fault but enough were that the Giants ability to move the ball in bad weather is decreased significantly. Amani Toomer dropped all nine passes thrown his way including what would have been a touchdown. Surprisingly, Sinorice Moss was the most successful wideout with five catches for 53 yards against the Skins. The loss of Shockey changes the dynamics on this team but how much remains to be seen since last week was just a bad game all around for the wideouts and Manning.

Tight Ends: The loss of Shockey makes the rookie Kevin Boss become the starting tight end along with help from Michael Matthews. Boss was only thrown three passes last week but caught two for 31 yards and the only passing score in the game.

Match Against the Defense: The Bills rushing defense has been their Achilles heel this year and Jamal Lewis just ran for 163 yards against them last week. This is where the Giants must have success and Jacobs has a nice opportunity to turn in good yardage and a score this week. When teams commit to the run against the Bills, they usually have very good results.

Manning has been good for one score per game but the Bills have been much better against the pass then their ranking may suggest. Over 14 games, the Bills have surrendered 18 passing scores and nine of those came in just two games against the Patriots. That means over 12 other games, the Bills only gave up nine passing scores. Look for the one touchdown that Manning always has but his yardage should be no better than moderate here and the rushing game should be the biggest component of the game plan, particularly if high winds exist.

Gaining Fantasy Points NYG 16 7 18 12 19 9
Preventing Fantasy Points BUF 21 26 23 15 19 3


Buffalo Bills (7-7)
Homefield: Ralph Wilson Stadium
  Opp Score Spread Over/Under
1 DEN 14-15 +3.5 37
2 @PIT 3-26 +10 37.5
3 @NE 7-38 +16.5 41
4 NYJ 17-14 +3 37.5
5 DAL 24-25 +10 42
6 BYE - - -
7 BAL 19-14 +3 35
8 @NYJ 13-3 +3 37
9 CIN 33-21 +1 43.5
10 @MIA 13-10 -3 41
11 NE 10-56 +15.5 46.5
12 @JAC 14-36 +7.5 36
13 @WAS 17-16 +5.5 37
14 MIA 38-17 -7.5 36.5
15 @CLE 0-8 +5.5 45
16 NYG   +3 34.5
17 @PHI 30-Dec SUN 1:00 PM
BUF vs NYG Rush Catch Pass
QB Trent Edwards     160
RB Marshawn Lynch 70,1 10  
TE Robert Royal   20  
WR Lee Evans   50  
WR Josh Reed   30  
WR Roscoe Parrish   30  
PK Rian Lindell 2 FG 1 XP  

Pregame Notes: The Bills never managed to score last week in the snow storm in Cleveland and that monster four score game against the Dolphins by Trent Edwards reverted back to his marginal norm. This is the final home game this year and the 14th time this year the Bills are underdogs - the only exception being the two games against the Fins. The Season is winding down as little more than training time for Edwards and hopefully a good start for Marshawn Lynch.

Quarterback: Trent Edwards has started six games this year and did throw for four scores against the Dolphins but otherwise his only one touchdown came in his first start back in week four. He has only two games over 176 passing yards and is just going through the natural learning cycle of a rookie. So far, the Miami game has been the only indicator that Edwards has promise. In the snowy conditions last week, Edwards completed only 13 of 33 passes for 124 yards.

Running Backs: Marshawn Lynch has only logged two games over 100 rushing yards this year but has scored in six contests and usually remains around 80 rushing yards. He is currently only 60 yards short of a 1000 yard season and has averaged 3.9 yards per carry. Once Lynch has a passing game supporting him and concerning the defense, he has definite promise in the future.

Fred Jackson is also in the mix though last week was limited to just seven carries for 16 yards and was used on three catches while Lynch has been largely ignored as a receiver.

Wide Receivers: Lee Evans has been the only wideout with any fantasy value for the Bills this season and while he was held to just 36 yards last week in the snow, he had scored twice against the Dolphins with 79 yards. The switch to Edwards depressed Evans' stats though since his best efforts and only big games all came with Losman as the starter.

Tight Ends: No reliable fantasy value from Robert Royal. He had two scores against the Dolphins but then was back to only one catch for nine yards last week. Edwards hasn't come to rely on him.

Match Against the Defense: The Giants rushing defense has been solid this year with the occasional lapse like last week. But they have only allowed eight rushing scores this season and most runners struggle to top 80 yards against them which fits into what Lynch has been doing anyway. Decent chance for a score here but Fred Jackson will be taking at least some carries away from Lynch.

Edwards is back at home but the Dolphins are not coming so do not expect a touchdown this week. The Giants can cover one player and that is all that the Bill have.

Gaining Fantasy Points BUF 32 24 26 22 26 16
Preventing Fantasy Points NYG 17 12 16 22 10 22

The Huddle
~ 2007 ~
Season Ticket
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