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FANTASY FOOTBALL WEEKLY FEATURES

Predictions & Projections
David Dorey
The Huddle
WEEK 16
~ 2007 ~
Season Ticket
Thursday
Sunday
Sunday
Sunday
Sunday Late
Saturday
Monday
*Updated

Prediction: NYJ 10, TEN 27

Update: Laveranues Coles has not been ruled out this week but he has only had very limited work in practice and has been considered for just being shut down for the season. He only lasted one play last week and is not a worth a fantasy start on Sunday regardless of his official status. Jerricho Cotchery has also been limited in practice because of his finger but the same was true last week and he played without a problem. He is expected to play this week as well. The entire Jets receiving squad is busted up. TE Chris Baker has been limited and is not certain to play and even Brad Smith was limited in practice as well and also is not a lock to play. Chad Pennington has been named the starter this week but may be short of receivers outside of Cotchery. Even Justin McCareins was limited in practice. But also realize, these are the Jets with HC Eric Mangini who learned his mis-use of the injury report from Bill Belichick so any practice reports are to be taken with a grain of salt. I am not changing the projections but the entire Jets passing game looks like it will be worse this week.

Lendale White has been held out of practice this week but should return on Friday. There has been nothing suggesting that he will not play this week and is likely just being rested as he was last week. Check on his status after Friday practice to be sure but there doesn't appear to be any concerns here at this point even with him taking off two days.

The Titans are in the 7th spot for the AFC that only has six teams go to the playoffs. They must not only win, but hope that the Browns or Steelers lose so it can go to tiebreakers. The Titans are only 4-3 at home but the Jets are just 1-6 on the road and only that thanks to a trip to Miami.

The Jets won 23-16 when the Titans came to New York in the 2006 season opener.

New York Jets (3-11)
Homefield: Giants Stadium
FieldTurf
  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 18-24 +3.5 47.5
15 @NE 10-20 +24.5 50.5
16 @TEN   +9 38
17 KC 30-Dec SUN 8:15 PM
NYJ at TEN Rush Catch Pass
QB Chad Pennington     170,1
RB Thomas Jones 50 10  
TE Chris Baker   40,1  
WR Brad Smith   40  
WR Jerricho Cotchery   60  
WR Justin McCareins   20  
PK Mike Nugent 1 XP 1 FG  
Pregame Notes: The Jets escaped New England with only a ten point loss which probably resulted in high fives on the plane home. The final game at home against the Chiefs holds some promise but the Jets have been terrible on the road this year and the Titans are still playing like they might end up in the playoffs. The Jets are only playing out a season that never got on track and two of the three wins came against the Dolphins. On the road this week, it's just a matter of getting through this week.

Quarterback: Kellen Clemens suffered what is loosely described as a rib injury by the always vague HC Eric Mangini. Until news to the contrary comes out, I will assume that Chad Pennington takes the start this week and he was more productive in a fantasy sense than Clemens has. He faltered against top defenses but had three games with two or more scores. It doesn't materially change the predictions for the Jets either way, particularly with Laveranues Coles likely out this week. There are some reports that Clemens has a cracked rib.

Pennington passed for 319 yards and two scores at Tennessee last season.

Running Backs: In case you were thinking that Thomas Jones could not get any worse, he rushed for 19 yards on nine carries in New England and was showed up by Leon Washington who gained 57 yards on just four runs. Washington doesn't get enough action to merit projections and Jones does not do enough to merit a fantasy start in most weeks. On the road in 2007, Jones has averaged a hefty 48 yards on 17 rushes.

The Jets only had 71 rushing yards but scored one rushing touchdown versus the Titans last year.

Wide Receivers: Laveranues Coles only lasted for one play against the Patriots before his high ankle sprain flared up and forced him from the game. Now there is talk about shutting him down for the final two games of the season so I will not be projecting for him. The loss of Coles is catastrophic to the passing game that really only relied on him and Jerricho Cotchery who has only one touchdown on the season. The loss will promote Justin McCareins and Brad Smith into more playing time but nothing so far says that they will rise to the challenge. Cotchery is playing with a broken right index finger but had a nice 119 yard game against the Browns.

Coles had a big game against the visiting Titans last year, catching eight passes for 153 yards. Cotchery turned in 65 yards on five receptions and scored once.

Tight Ends: A possible sign of hope is that without Coles last week, Chris Baker had his season best game of eight catches for 66 yards. That too was a function of the good Patriots secondary and the bad weather but should play into this week as well with Coles out.

Baker caught four passes for 34 yards and scored a touchdown versus the Titans last year.

Match Against the Defense: Jones is only averaging about 50 yards on the road and that fits well into what the Titans would allow, No reason to expect more from Jones this week and certainly little chance of a score.

Pennington faces a secondary that can be beaten but all he has to use is Cotchery and Baker. Leon Washington could see an uptick as a receiver but he;s rarely had more than three catches in a game. There is no element here that is an attractive fantasy start, not even Cotchery who now gets the primary attention from the secondary. I like one passing score late in the game but it could go anywhere. I am giving it to Baker but it is not a vote of confidence.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points NYJ 23 31 17 21 13 24
Preventing Fantasy Points TEN 8 14 19 8 8 13

 

Tennessee Titans (8-6)
Homefield: LP Field
Grass
  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 26-17 -4 34
16 NYJ   -9 38
17 @IND 30-Dec SUN 1:00 PM
TEN vs NYJ Rush Catch Pass
QB Vince Young 20   170,1
RB Lendale White 100,1 10  
TE Bo Scaife   20  
WR Justin Gage   40,1  
WR Eric Moulds   30  
WR Roydell Williams   60  
PK Rob Bironas 2 FG 3 XP  

Pregame Notes: The Titans can at least secure a winning season here and this is the final home game of the year. The final week in Indianapolis will almost certainly see the Colts resting players so a 10-6 record is not out of reach thanks to the schedule. The offense is still inconsistent and the defense has taken a step backwards in recent weeks but the team still has plenty to build up next year.

Quarterback: Vince Young was on a role passing well each week until week 14 against the Chargers. He was back in the saddle with two scores and 191 yards in Kansas City last Sunday. Young still remains highly inconsistent but has improved this year as a passer, at least marginally. He still has no wide receivers that would qualify as any better than a #3 on any other NFL team and what he accomplishes is mostly all about Young. He's really been placed in a difficult position to succeed with sub-standard receivers.

Collins was the starter in 2006 when he passed for 223 yards versus the Jets in the season opener.

Running Backs: Chris Henry is eligible to play again after serving his four week suspension but after being gone for a month, he'll likely be inactive or just play special teams this week. LenDale White has been running well enough and has gained over 90 yards in the last two games and has seven scores on the year. As long as the opponent doesn't get a big lead - unlikely this week - White routinely gets 20+ carries each week.

Chris Brown has been used for just relief work and only had five carries in both the most recent games. He did score in both week 13 and 14 but had minimal yardage.

The Titans ran for only 86 yards but scored two rushing touchdowns against the Jets last year.

Wide Receivers: After having an encouraging month, Justin Gage has been quiet for the last two games with only four catches for 57 yards combined. That leaves the TItans without any "go to" receiver and this motley crew has now turned into Roydell Williams as the primary wideout who scored twice last week in Kansas City and also in week 13. But those sandwiched a 30 yard game against the Chargers and followed only nine yards in Cincinnati - there is just relying on a Titans wideout this year. For whatever reason, the team wants Young to make something out of nothing and that doesn't happen each week.

Tight Ends: Bo Scaife was having a decent string of games with 30+ yards since midseason but in the last two weeks only had two catches for 14 yards against the Chargers and then no catches in Kansas City.

Match Against the Defense: The Jets rank well against the pass but only because they suck against the run and teams just rush their way to a win. On the road they routinely allow 100 yard games and have given up eight rushing scores away from New York in seven games. Look for a healthy game here by White with good yardage and a score and there could be some bleed over for Brown to get into the act as well.

Young will have another moderate game here because that is all he will need to do. I like him to throw for one score but it could go anywhere. I will credit Gage but the confidence level is very low. I like there to be one defensive score here as well.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points TEN 20 16 24 27 3 13
Preventing Fantasy Points NYJ 7 29 7 11 27 28

The Huddle
WEEK 16
~ 2007 ~
Season Ticket
Thursday
Sunday
Sunday
Sunday
Sunday Late
Saturday
Monday
*Updated

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