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

Prediction: SEA 17, ATL 20

Update: Deion Branch was held out of practice on Wednesday and was limited on Thursday because of a calf injury. I am removing him from the projections because it is unlikely he would get much playing time in a meaningless game and will be needed next week. There is a chance that D.J. Hackett gets to play this week but I am not adding him into the projections. As fragile as he has proven to be this year, it would be surprising if he had any significant action this week if he even plays.

Michael Jenkins has not practiced yet this week because of a quadriceps injury and is unlikely to play in the season ender.

The Seahawks have locked up the NFC West and have nothing to play for in this game other than to keep player healthy - particularly since the carpet of the Georgia Dome has taken out several knees in the past. The Falcons are actually favored in this game which says it all.

Seattle Seahawks (10-5)
Homefield: Qwest Field
  Opp Score Spread Over/Under
1 TB 20-6 -6 41
2 @ARI 20-23 -2.5 42.5
3 CIN 24-21 -3 50
4 @SF 23-3 -1.5 40.5
5 @PIT 0-21 +6 41
6 NO 17-28 -6 43
7 STL 33-6 -9 40
8 BYE - - -
9 @CLE 30-33 +1 47
10 SF 24-0 -10 39.5
11 CHI 30-23 -5.5 37.5
12 @STL 24-19 -3 44.5
13 @PHI 28-24 +3 43
14 ARI 42-21 -7 44.5
15 @CAR 10-13 -7 38
16 BAL 27-6 -10 40
17 @ATL   +2.5 38
SEA at ATL Rush Catch Pass
QB Matt Hasselbeck     200,2
RB Shaun Alexander 50    
RB Maurice Morris 40 20  
TE Marcus Pollard   10  
WR Deion Branch 50
WR Bobby Engram   60,1  
WR Nate Burleson   50,1  
PK Josh Brown 1 FG 2 XP  
Pregame Notes: The Seahawks have already won all they are going to win with the NFC West locked up. They played flat last week in the loss in Carolina and now go to Atlanta with the intention of not getting anyone injured. Seattle has to play next week so this is the only time to rest any players. Add in that the carpet of the Georgia Dome can cause injuries and this week is going to be one of those "get them out of there" sort of games.

Quarterback: Matt Hasselbeck is enjoying a career best year with 27 passing scores and already 3819 yards. But he only had 199 passing yards against the Ravens with only 27 passing attempts - a season low. In most games., Hasselbeck has been a lock for multiple scores but he should see Seneca Wallace take over at some point this week.

Running Backs: Shaun Alexander ran for 73 yards on 13 carries last week for his best performance - easily - since week three. Alexander only has three scores on the season and enters into this week with only 685 rushing yards on 199 carries for a paltry 3.4 yard average. No doubt that Alexander will rest some this week but then again, Maurice Morris has been more productive in most games and he needs to be rested as well. Relying on any component of the rushing game this week is overly optimistic.

Wide Receivers: Bobby Engram became the franchise's single-season leader in receptions with 90 for the season.He only has five scores on the year but has been solid around 60 or more yards in most games. Deion Branch has varied greatly this year with two games over 100 yards but several minimal efforts as well. Nate Burleson actually leads the crew with seven touchdowns though he has never had more than 71 yards in any game. Hasselbeck does a nice job of missing these guys up every week so that the total is good but the individuals rarely have more than a moderate game.

Tight Ends: No fantasy value this year. The loss of Jerramy Stevens has never been compensated for and Marcus Pollard is already one of the older tight ends in the NFL.

Match Against the Defense: Playing the Falcons should be cause for celebration but as the Seahawks proved last week when they lost 10-13 in Carolina. This is just a meaningless road game now and there is no reason to get anyone injured before playing in the first round next week. Expect about half efforts from most players here who will be hard to rely on for a full game. The Falcons will want to win their final game, at home no less, and the Seahawks will likely allow them as much. It just doesn't matter.

Gaining Fantasy Points SEA 7 21 6 26 9 4
Preventing Fantasy Points ATL 13 28 9 25 20 30


Atlanta Falcons (3-12)
Homefield: Georgia Dome
  Opp Score Spread Over/Under
1 @MIN 3-24 +3 36
2 @JAC 7-13 +11 34.5
3 CAR 20-27 +4 37.5
4 HOU 26-16 +2.5 39.5
5 @TEN 13-20 +8 41
6 NYG 10-31 +4.5 43
7 @NO 16-22 +9 43
8 BYE - - -
9 SF 20-16 -3 37
10 @CAR 20-13 +4.5 36.5
11 TB 7-31 +3 35
12 IND 13-31 +12 45
13 @STL 16-28 +4.5 42
14 NO 14-34 +4.5 42.5
15 @TB 3-37 +10 39
16 @ARI 27-30 +10.5 43
17 SEA   -2.5 38
ATL vs SEA Rush Catch Pass
QB Chris Redman     230,2
RB Warrick Dunn 40 10  
RB Jerious Norwood 40 20  
TE Alge Crumpler   20  
WR Laurent Robinson   60,1  
WR Michael Jenkins 40
WR Roddy White   80,1  
PK Morten Andersen 2 FG 2 XP  

Pregame Notes: The Falcons are on a six game losing streak and could have won in Arizona but figured that a field goal was better than going for a touchdown in Arizona. No head coach, no rushing game and Chris Redman looking like he is the best option at quarterback only because of how poorly Joey Harrington and Byron Leftwich played. Vick not only ruined his own career, he brought down an entire NFL team in the name of fighting some dogs.

Quarterback: Chris Redman comes off the only 300 yard game by a Falcons' quarterback this year when he passed for 315 yards and two scores in Arizona. Granted, he crashed and burned in Tampa Bay in the wake of Petrino leaving but he had 298 yards and two scores the previous week against the Saints. It doesn't really matter in the big picture though since the new coaching staff is almost certain to sweep the shelves bare and start over for quarterback next year.

Running Backs: If three plays could describe the Falcons entire season, it came last week in the fourth quarter when they reached the Cardinals seven-yard line down with a tied score and opted to run Warrick Dunn three straight times to gain one yard. Dunn had 12 carries in the game for a total of 13 yards. They decided he was the best option there in a game that had several minutes left to play. No using Jerious Norwood who gained 33 yards on seven carries and has always run better than Dunn. No passing by Redman who already had been successful. They ran Dunn. And they ended up losing. The new coaching staff has to dump Dunn or at least put him on the bench where he belongs.

Wide Receivers: The lone bright spot for the Falcons was the play of Roddy White who topped 1000 receiving yards for the first time since Terance Mathis did it in 1999. White has 1140 yards on the season and dwarfs the play of any other wideout here. Joe Horn has been out for several weeks and never did anything when he played. There was a reason why the Saints allowed him to leave - he is over the hill and ineffective. Laurent Robinson has looked promising in relief of Horn and should take over the spot in 2007 barring the addition of a free agent.

Tight Ends: Alge Crumpler scored last week for only the third time this year but he's been a huge disappointment without Vick there to solely rely on him. Crumpler only has 377 yards on the season and isn't even worthy of being a fantasy backup.

Match Against the Defense: The Falcons are all playing for jobs next year (on which team is hard to say) and showed up well in Arizona last week. This is the chance for them to finally get a win and end the year on a very small positive note thanks to the Seahawks likely to rest some players. Look for Redman to get a couple of scores here that will end up with the wideouts. This is hard to call since Seattle will rest players.

Gaining Fantasy Points ATL 29 30 19 28 29 30
Preventing Fantasy Points SEA 4 24 15 7 7 5

The Huddle
~ 2007 ~
Season Ticket
Sunday Late

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