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FANTASY FOOTBALL IN-SEASON FEATURES

Predictions & Projections
David Dorey
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The Huddle
WEEK 7
~ 2008 ~
Season Ticket
Sunday
Sunday
Sunday
Sunday Late
Bye Week
ARZ
Monday
ATL
JAX
*updated
PHI

Prediction: NYJ 20, OAK 23

The Jets hit the road where they are 1-1 on the season and face the 1-4 Raiders. The change in coaching staff certainly hasn't brought around any changes for the Raiders yet but this is the first time that Tom Cable will be in Oakland as the head coach. This is a coin flip game since the Raiders are due and the Jets have not been as good on the road.

New York Jets (3-2)
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 26-14 -6 45
7 @OAK - -3 42.5
8 KC - - -
9 @BUF - - -
10 STL - - -
11 @NE - - -
12 @TEN - - -
13 DEN - - -
14 @SF - - -
15 BUF - - -
16 @SEA - - -
17 MIA - - -
NYJ at OAK Rush Catch Pass
QB Brett Favre     240,2
RB Thomas Jones 50 10  
TE Dustin Keller   20,1  
WR Laveranues Coles   80,1  
WR Jerricho Cotchery   80  
WR Chansi Stuckey   20  
PK Jay Feely 2 FG 2 XP  
Pregame Notes: Two solid wins over weaker visiting teams have turned the Jets around into a winning record and the schedule still holds some gems coming up - OAK, KC, STL and SF. But the Jets now have to show that they can win on the road. The home stands of the past couple of weeks were great but the defense still needs work.

Quarterback: After his big six-touchdown pile-on against the Cardinals, Brett Favre backed off to only one score and 189 yards last week when the Bengals visited. This will be only his third game away from New York and the first two had him throwing multiple touchdowns in Miami and San DIego. Favre's penchant for turnovers continues with six interceptions and a lost fumble on the year but the important thing is that he continues to make it harder for Peyton Manning to ever catch him in the record book.

Running Backs: Thomas Jones comes off his best game of the year when he scored two rushing touchdowns and tacked on a third via a pass. But he still only ran for 65 yards on 17 carries against the visiting Bengals and that leaves him with just a 3.8 yard average. Jones worst game of the year was in his last road trip when he only gained 37 yards in San Diego.

Leon Washington is always rumored to be taking a bigger role but he has continued to just be relief and hasn't been running any better than Jones anyway.

Wide Receivers: The duo of Laveranues Coles and Jerricho Cotchery continue to offer at least moderate fantasy value each week. Coles has four scores on the season and has remained around 70 yards in most weeks while Cotchery has three touchdowns and also plays around 70 yards in most games. Chansi Stuckey has cooled off after starting the year with three scores and only having two catches for 12 yards over these last two weeks.

Coles and Cotchery remain the biggest weapons of this offense and both had 22 catches over the last three games. Cotchery was blasted by a defender in the last game on a failed two-point conversion but he only had the wind knocked out of him and is expected to be fine this week.

Tight Ends: After catching a touchdown in two straight games, Dustin Keller never even had a pass against the Bengals last Sunday. No other tight end here has the fantasy potential like Keller who has already shown chemistry with Favre.

Match Against the Defense: The Raiders defense has been giving up the run all year but that is the weakness of the Jets who are on the road as well. Expect nothing more than moderate yardage and no score from Jones as has been his standard.

Favre goes against a secondary that always allows at least one passing touchdown and decent yardage for teams like the Jets who prefer to throw anyway. I like healthy passing yardage this week with two touchdowns that should end up with Coles and Keller most likely. The Raiders have been bad against the tight end and Keller has Favre's trust.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points NYJ 6 26 2 12 26 2
Preventing Fantasy Points    OAK 24 27 12 30 15 10


Oakland Raiders (1-4)
Homefield: McAfee Coliseum
Grass
  Opp Score Spread Over/Under
1 DEN 14-41 +3 41.5
2 @KC 23-8 +4 34.5
3 @BUF 23-24 +9.5 36.5
4 SD 18-28 +7 46
5 BYE - - -
6 @NO 3-34 +7.5 47.5
7 NYJ - +3 42.5
8 @BAL - - -
9 ATL - - -
10 CAR - - -
11 @MIA - - -
12 @DEN - - -
13 KC - - -
14 @SD - - -
15 NE - - -
16 HOU - - -
17 @TB - - -
OAK vs NYJ Rush Catch Pass
QB JaMarcus Russell     160,1
RB Darren McFadden 40 10  
RB Justin Fargas 50,1    
TE Zach Miller   40,1  
WR Javon Walker   20  
WR Ronald Curry   30  
WR Johnnie Lee Higgins   40  
PK Sebastian Janikowski 3 FG 2 XP  

Pregame Notes: The bye week firing of Lane Kiffen and the installation of Tom Cable as the new head coach only signals the dysfunction that has been so prevalent with the Raiders in recent years. The first game certainly was no big rally around the new coach with a spanking in New Orleans. The passing game has been non-existent and the attempt to use more of the playbook blew up last week.

Quarterback: Jamarcus Russell was coming along slowly but the new coaching staff tried to get him to do too much last week and he responded with completing only 13 of 35 passes for 159 yards and one interception. Russell has four scores on the year and three came in home games. This week will be another test for Russell who will once again have the play calling scaled back to more familiar ground.

Running Backs: The rumors are that the Raiders are shopping Michael Bush and Justin Fargas around the league but there seems to be little credence in that. Darren McFadden has been ineffective since sustaining his turf toe but on Monday was his first time without a boot to protect his toe and there is hope that he will be able to practice fully this week. Justin Fargas came back last Sunday but only gained 35 yards on ten carries in New Orleans. That was still good enough to be the lead runner for the Raiders.

Michael Bush still played with Fargas back but was limited to only three carries. The game got away from the Raiders last week all too fast and that affected the rushing attempts. Back at home this week the sharing will continue but there should be more carries to distribute.

Wide Receivers: The Raiders are unhappy with all their receivers and that includes Ronald Curry and Javon Walker who both could lose their starting jobs as early as this week. The coaching staff is counting up dropped passes and they are still counting. This is a horrible group so far and that in part reflects having a first year starting quarterback. But there is no fantasy value in any wide receiver for the Raiders and they are about to till the soil and bench the lot of them. Do not be surprised if you see unfamiliar names catching passes for the Raiders soon. Be surprised if they catch very many or score though.

Tight Ends: Sadly, Zach Miller has been more consistently productive as a receiver than any other player for the Raiders. He has been blanked in one game but has been above 24 yards in all others and on this team - that is an accomplishment.

Match Against the Defense: The Raiders need to face a bad rushing defense to have a chance but the Jets have been pretty good this year in that regard. No rusher has turned in more than 67 yards against them though several have scored. Since the rushing load is split in three here, look for no more than moderate rushing numbers and probably two rushing scores since Russell is having a harder time.

The Jets secondary has been their weakness but that doesn't match up well with Russell. If he can get a passing score, they Raiders have a shot at winning

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points OAK 27 16 30 16 20 20
Preventing Fantasy Points    NYJ 25 16 18 27 9 27

The Huddle
WEEK 7
~ 2008 ~
Season Ticket
Sunday
Sunday
Sunday
Sunday Late
Bye Week
ARZ
Monday
ATL
JAX
PHI
 
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