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FANTASY FOOTBALL IN-SEASON FEATURES

Predictions & Projections
David Dorey
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The Huddle
WEEK 6
~ 2008 ~
Season Ticket
Sunday
Sunday
Sunday
Sunday Late
Bye Week
BUF
Monday
KC
PIT
*updated
TEN

Prediction: CIN 20, NYJ 27

Update: Shayne Graham is questionable to play and may end up getting replaced before kickoff. I am not changing him but a far safer route is to not use him since he is not 100% certain to play this week. Carson Palmer will miss this week because of his right elbow after being limited this week and then held out of practice on Friday. There is a chance he could come in off the bench but obviously not worth relying on. Of course that makes using Ryan Fitzpatrick a risk as well. I am updating the projections and the score as well. And Laveranues Coles is questionable and was limited in practice just like every week and is expected to play.

The Jets are rested after spending two weeks giggling about scoring 56 points on the Cardinals while the Bengals are 0-5 and remarkably still putting up a fight each week. The Bengals will win a game this year and here is a decent place for it but the Bengals won 38-31 when the Jets visited last year during week seven. It's payback time.

Cincinnati Bengals (0-5)
Homefield: Paul Brown Stadium
FieldTurf
  Opp Score Spread Over/Under
1 @BAL 10-17 -1 39
2 TEN 7-24 -1 37.5
3 @NYG 23-26 +13.5 42
4 CLE 12-20 +3.5 44
5 @DAL 22-31 +17.5 44
6 @NYJ - +6 45
7 PIT - - -
8 @HOU - - -
9 JAX - - -
10 BYE - - -
11 PHI - - -
12 @PIT - - -
13 BAL - - -
14 @IND - - -
15 WAS - - -
16 @CLE - - -
17 KC - - -
CIN at NYJ Rush Catch Pass
QB Carson Palmer 210,2
QB Ryan Fitzpatrick     190,1
RB Chris Perry 50 10  
TE Reggie Kelly   10,1  
WR Chad Johnson   40  
WR T.J. Houshmandzadeh   70  
WR Chris Henry   20  
PK Shayne Graham 2 FG 1 XP  
Pregame Notes: On the plus side, the Bengals do not have their bye until week 10 so Marvin Lewis will be getting more paychecks than either Lane Kiffen or Scott Linehan. But the Bengals are 0-5 and the schedule through week nine may very well deliver an 0-9 team to the bye week. The biggest news lately from the Bengals is the rumor that they are trying to trade away T.J. Houshmandzadeh to help ensure the #1 draft pick in April and probably load up on other picks for who ever the new coach will be. This team has not quit yet by any means but that is starting to be surprising.

Quarterback: Carson Palmer's elbow held up last week when he passed for 217 yards and two scores in Dallas. That is only the second game this year when he had a score but Palmer is getting back to form which pretty much means finding Houshmandzadeh at least until they trade him and the entire season away. The important thing is that Palmer is healthy again and starting on a team that always needs to throw.

Palmer passed for 226 yards and one score against the visiting Jets last year.

Running Backs: Chris Perry scored twice this year but has been on a downward spiral recently. He only rushed for 59 yards on 25 carries over the last two games and he has fumbled in every single game this year with three of them lost to the defense. Cedric Benson got in his first playing time when he ran 10 times for 30 yards in Dallas and he was impressive enough that HC Marvin Lewis plans to expand Benson's role so that there is no fantasy value in this backfield. On the plus side, Benson does not fumble. At least not yet. I will continue to project for just Perry but that may be changing if Benson has as many carries again this week.

Kenny Watson ripped the Jets for 130 yards on 30 carries and scored three times in week seven.

Wide Receivers: Chris Henry was back from his four-game suspension last week but never had a pass thrown to him. Chad Johnson still turns in the same production as your average tight end while T.J. Houshmandzadeh pretty much carries the entire load here with three of the four passing touchdowns and the only two games over 70 yards this year. He had two scores in Dallas and caught seven passes for 85 yards. In New York against the Giants, he had 12 receptions for 146 yards and a score. The only decent games - and the only scores - that T.J. had this year were in road games. Johnson has scored once but has topped out with 43 yards in a game. Each season he has more bad games and fewer big games. This year - no big and all bad.

Johnson caught three passes for 102 yards against the Jets last season while Houshmandzadeh had four catches for 43 yards and one score.

Tight Ends: No fantasy value.

Match Against the Defense: The rushing game here is sub-par at best and the Jets have not allowed more than 67 rushing yards to any runner this year. But they have allowed six rushing scores to drop their rankings. With Perry now sharing with Benson, even playing the Jets doesn't look that appealing.

Palmer faces a secondary that can be beaten but what does Palmer have to use outside of Houshmandzadeh? Sure, every Johnson owner will start him and cross their fingers for the sixth time this year but even this matchup doesn't warrant starting him until he does something positive. I will project for two passing scores and Houshmandzadeh should have at least one of them. The Jets are also horrible against tight ends so I will give the other score to Kelly but place low confidence in that.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points CIN 25 32 20 30 24 25
Preventing Fantasy Points    NYJ 29 26 23 30 17 21


New York Jets (2-2)
Homefield: Giants Stadium
FieldTurf
  Opp Score Spread Over/Under
1 @MIA 20-14 -3 36
2 NE 10-19 -1.5 39
3 @SD 29-48 +9 44
4 ARZ 56-35 -3 45
5 BYE - - -
6 CIN - -6 45
7 @OAK - - -
8 KC - - -
9 @BUF - - -
10 STL - - -
11 @NE - - -
12 @TEN - - -
13 DEN - - -
14 @SF - - -
15 BUF - - -
16 @SEA - - -
17 MIA - - -
NYJ vs CIN Rush Catch Pass
QB Brett Favre     200,2
RB Thomas Jones 60,1 10  
TE Dustin Keller   20,1  
WR Laveranues Coles   60,1  
WR Jerricho Cotchery   50  
WR Chansi Stuckey   40  
PK Jay Feely 2 FG 3 XP  

Pregame Notes: The Jets had a "feel good" game before taking their bye week when they throttled the visiting Cardinals (some say ran up the score) 56-35 and Brett Favre treated the hometown fans to a six-touchdown performance. But the reality too is that the defense here gave up 84 points over just the last two games and the rushing game is still sluggish. The Jets are tied with the Dolphins for the AFC East cellar but at least the schedule gets an easy stretch now with CIN, OAK, KC and STL coming in the next five weeks.

Quarterback: Brett Favre did a nice bit of passing on his stats by throwing for six touchdowns against the Cardinals. The final one came with only two minutes left when the Jets already had a 14 point lead and on fourth down and five, Favre threw his final touchdown pass in the game in case the Cardinals might score three touchdowns in the final 1:46 in the game. That doubled the number of scores that Favre had on the season. Favre has been as good as those six scores and as bad as 181 yards and one score against the Patriots. At least in fantasy terms he isn't shy about running up the score.,

Chad Pennington passed for 272 yards and three touchdowns in Cincinnati last season.

Running Backs: There is a major concern that Thomas Jones has turned the corner on his career. He turned 30 years old two months ago and has apparently lost a step in the process despite the major upgrades to the offensive line made in the offseason. Jones is only averaging 3.8 yards per carry and much less than that for the last three games. He has not scored this year and hasn't topped 46 rushing yards since week two.

There is a growing call for using Leon Washington more but in the last game he only has seven carries for 26 yards and rushed just nine times in the three previous games. The lack of a decent rushing game may delight Brett Favre, but it is making the offense become one-dimensional.

Jones gained only 67 yards on 19 carries in Cincinnati last year.

Wide Receivers: Laveranues Coles may have been cold about the departure of Chad Pennington but he;s apparently finally gotten over it. Coles led the Jets with eight catches for 105 yards and three scores against the Cards and had a score in the previous game as well. Jerricho Cotchery had two scores against the Cards with four receptions for 67 yards.

The only loser in the last game was Chansi Stuckey who finally had a game without a touchdown. The passing game has come together more as Favre gains chemistry with these wideouts.

Coles had eight receptions for 133 yards and two scores against the Jets last season while Cotchery turned in six catches for 60 yards and one score.

Tight Ends: The rookie Dustin Keller only has six catches on the season but recorded a touchdown in the last two games. Too little yardage for fantasy purposes but he's becoming a worthy bye week filler.

Match Against the Defense: Jones faces a defense that has allowed well over 100 rushing yards in every game but Jones hasn't yet proven to be up to the task. Even against the Cards when the Jets scored 56 points Thomas had a rather minor role. This will be as good a game as it gets for Jones but that doesn't mean he has a great one.

Favre faces a secondary that has allowed at least a passing score for the last four weeks and in an easier game such as this, the Jets will be throwing and scoring because they can. No wideout has recorded more than 70 yards against the Bengals including Owens and Burress. Not likely a big game here but a solid win. Coles and Keller are the most likely scores here.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points NYJ 1 30 2 8 25 1
Preventing Fantasy Points    CIN 13 22 7 21 20 20

The Huddle
WEEK 6
~ 2008 ~
Season Ticket
Sunday
Sunday
Sunday
Sunday Late
Bye Week
BUF
Monday
KC
PIT
TEN
Other Features
Fantasy Statistics
Tuesday Injury Report
Free Agent Forecast
Commentary From the Edge
Game Recaps
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