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FANTASY FOOTBALL IN-SEASON FEATURES

Predictions & Projections
David Dorey
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The Huddle
WEEK 8
~ 2008 ~
Season Ticket
Sunday
Sunday
Sunday
Sunday
Bye Week
CHI, MIN
Monday
DEN, GB
 
* updated

Prediction: SEA 16, SF 24

Update: Josh Morgan was held out of practice on Wednesday to rest his sore groin and then had a limited day on Thursday. Today he had a full practice and is expected to play. Start him without a worry.

The 49ers won 33-30 in Seattle back in week two but this time host the Seahawks with a new interim head coach in Mike Singletary. The Seahawks have only won one home game and are still decimated by injury while the 49ers are only 1-3 at home and have lost their last four games. This is a coin flip game that will be messy but the 49ers are at home against one of the only two teams they could beat.

Seattle Seahawks (1-5)
Homefield: Qwest Field
FieldTurf
  Opp Score Spread Over/Under
1 @BUF 10-34 +1 39
2 SF 30-33 -8 38.5
3 STL 37-13 -10 44
4 BYE - - -
5 @NYG 6-44 +7 43.5
6 GB 17-27 -2.5 46.5
7 @TB 10-20 +11 39
8 @SF - +4.5 42.5
9 PHI - - -
10 @MIA - - -
11 ARZ - - -
12 WAS - - -
13 @DAL - - -
14 NE - - -
15 @STL - - -
16 NYJ - - -
17 @ARZ - - -
SEA @ SF Rush Catch Pass
QB Seneca Wallace     150,1
RB Julius Jones 50 10  
TE John Carlson   20  
WR Bobby Engram   40  
WR Keary Colbert   20  
WR Koren Robinson   30,1  
PK Olindo Mare 3 FG 1 XP  

Pregame Notes: It's called going out with a whimper for Mike Holmgren who could not get a healthy set of wideouts and once he finally did, he lost his quarterback. And all the while his defense is falling apart like never before. This is the easier stretch of the schedule with games against SF, MIA and ARZ looming but nothing in their recent past suggests that the Seahawks can take advantage of it. After so many years, the Seahawks have gone straight from the penthouse to the basement of the NFC West.

Quarterback:While HC Mike "where's my gold watch?" Holmgren will not rule out Matt Hasselbeck yet he has not ruled him in either and that should mean another week of watching Seneca Wallace prove that short college quarterbacks do not make the transfer to the NFL well. His first start had him complete 12 of 23 passes for 73 yards, one touchdown, interception and lost fumble. Even the 49ers with a mid-season new coach has to love this game. Maybe Singletary can just win and then retire as the winningest head coach of all time.

Hasselbeck passed for only 189 yards and two interceptions in week two against the 49ers.

Running Backs: Since the two home games against the 49ers and Rams where Julius Jones scored and had 120+ rushing yards in each, he has been on a decline. A rather sharp one at that since he has not score since week three and not rushed for more than 61 yards in a game. T.J. Duckett has been even less effective and only had seven carries combined over the last three games. This is not a road team and Jones will not be replicating what happened in Seattle when he ran for 127 yards on 26 carries and scored once against the visiting 49ers in week two. T.J. Duckett had a short touchdown as well.

Wide Receivers: Until the Seahawks can get a healthy Hasselbeck back, there is no fantasy value here among the wideouts. Bobby Engram has one catch for eight yards over the last two weeks and Koren Robinson has the high game with two catches for 23 yards. Deion Branch may return this week from his heel injury but I will not include him until cleared. Updates and consolations as warranted.

The receivers were mostly injured in the previous meeting with the 49ers and Billy McMullen led the wide receivers with just 48 yards.

Tight Ends: There was no yardage attached but John Carlson had the lone receiving touchdown last week when he caught three passes but only gained 11 yards. He's a Wallace favorite now.

Carlson caught six passes for 78 yards in the first meeting with the 49ers.

Match Against the Defense: The Seahawks do not rush well on the road and have a bad quarterback situation this week. Expect minimal numbers from Julius Jones since he will need a long gainer to get any yardage here. Teams with quarterbacks have a hard enough time here as it is.

Wallace will fare better this week but nothing dramatic. Look for improved passing numbers that remain below 200 and one passing score that favors Robinson slightly.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points SEA 30 21 30 16 19 31
Preventing Fantasy Points    SF 17 24 23 2 32 32


San Francisco 49ers (2-5)
Homefield: Monster Park
Grass
  Opp Score Spread Over/Under
1 ARZ 13-23 +2.5 41.5
2 @SEA 33-30 +8 38.5
3 DET 31-13 -4 46
4 @NO 17-31 +6 48.5
5 NE 21-30 +3 41.5
6 PHI 26-40 +5 43
7 @NYG 17-29 +10.5 45
8 SEA - -4.5 42.5
9 BYE - - -
10 @ARZ - - -
11 STL - - -
12 @DAL - - -
13 @BUF - - -
14 NYJ - - -
15 @MIA - - -
16 @STL - - -
17 WAS - - -
SF vs SEA Rush Catch Pass
QB J.T. O'Sullivan     210,2
RB Frank Gore 110,1 20  
TE Vernon Davis   10  
WR Isaac Bruce   60,1  
WR Josh Morgan   70,1  
WR Arnaz Battle   30  
PK Joe Nedney 1 FG 3 XP  

Pregame Notes: The 49ers have elected to dump HC Mike Nolan a week before the bye because the plan was leaked and made the organization look bad worse. Of course anyone above the age of 12 with a rudimentary knowledge of the NFL also could see it coming so maybe it wasn't a leak but an easy guess. Regardless, Mike "I'm looking at YOU" Singletary takes over as head coach. The 49ers brought on ex-defensive coordinator Nolan to help the defense mostly and the 49ers are #32 in points allowed with 196 though per game the Lions edge them out. The great thing is that the 49ers get to face perhaps one of only a handful of teams that they could beat this week.

Quarterback: There are rumors that J.T. O'Sullivan will be replaced this week but that appears premature. Granted, O'Sullivan leads the league with ten interceptions and with his five lost fumbles added in, he's not only #1 in turnovers, he five ahead of #2 Brett Favre. And he has been sacked 29 times already but that's all a part of being a Martz quarterback. O'Sullivan hasn't even gotten to the annual rib injury yet. Another great reason why he will not be replaced this week? O'Sullivan passed for 321 yards and one score in Seattle for his best game of the year so far.

Running Backs: Frank Gore had been maintaining his fantasy value almost in spite of what the offense around him was doing but he finally fell victim last week in New York when he only had 11 yards on 11 carries but added 50 yards on three catches. Gore's best games this year have been at home where four of his five touchdowns were scored and both of his 100 rushing yard games occurred.

Gore rushed for 61 yards on 19 carries and scored once against the Seahawks in week two. He added five catches for 38 yards.

Wide Receivers: Isaac Bruce has enjoyed a decent possession role with the 49ers but has done little over the last two weeks. The biggest change of note here is that Josh Morgan has bypassed Bryant Johnson on the depth chart to become the starting split end and turned in five catches for 86 yards and one score against the Giants. New coach next year or not, Morgan is part of the youth movement that is actually working.

Bruce enjoyed a season high four catches for 153 yards in Seattle this year. Johnson turned in six receptions for 78 yards and one score.

Tight Ends: Hopefully we have all ran to the waiver wire to grab Vernon Davis for the last time. After turning in six catches for 75 yards in Philly during week six, Davis followed that up with one catch for five yards against the Giants. He only had one other pass thrown to him - a perfect strike 25 yards down the field that he dropped.

Davis had no catches in Seattle this year.

Match Against the Defense: Gore had moderate success in Seattle and should nearly double that at home with the Seahawks using Seneca Wallace. Look for 100+ rushing yards and at least one score.

JTO had thrown for over 300 yards in Seattle but will tone that down with a better rushing game this time. Look for two scores here unless Gore gets two. The starting wideouts should both manage a touchdown.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points SF 13 25 19 24 6 21
Preventing Fantasy Points    SEA 30 21 31 10 31 25

The Huddle
WEEK 8
~ 2008 ~
Season Ticket
Sunday
Sunday
Sunday
Monday
Bye Week
CHI, MIN
DEN, GB
Other Features
Fantasy Statistics
Tuesday Injury Report
Free Agent Forecast
Commentary From the Edge
Game Recaps
Tunnel Vision
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