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Predictions & Projections
David Dorey
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The Huddle
~ 2008 ~
Season Ticket
Sunday Late

Prediction: WAS 20, SEA 13

Update: Clinton Portis was held out of practice this week until Friday when he only had partial practice. He is questionable to play this week and although he was in a similar place last week and played, that was against divisional rival Dallas and now Seattle. Plus Portis has the Giants waiting after this week. I am leaving him in the projections but if you intend on using him make sure you check the inactives and realize even if he plays he won't be 100% and could be limited in the game.

Antwaan Randle El is also considered questionable but HC Jim Zorn already said he expects him to play.

The Redskins come off a home loss to the Cowboys but still are tied for second best in the NFC East and remain in the wildcard hunt at worst. They even sport a 3-1 road record but the Seahawks have lost three straight and at 2-8 are a but a shell of the once powerful team a short couple of seasons ago. Seattle wants this one but the Skins need it.

Washington Redskins (6-4)
Homefield: FedEx Field
  Opp Score Spread Over/Under
1 @NYG 7-16 +3.5 41
2 NO 29-24 -1 42.5
3 ARZ 24-17 -3 42
4 @DAL 26-24 +11.5 46
5 @PHI 23-17 +5 43
6 STL 17-19 -13.5 44
7 CLE 14-11 -7.5 42.5
8 @DET 25-17 -8 43.5
9 PIT 6-23 -1.5 37
10 BYE - - -
11 DAL 10-14 +1.5 43
12 @SEA - -3.5 41.5
13 NYG - - -
14 @BAL - - -
15 @CIN - - -
16 PHI - - -
17 @SF - - -
WAS @ SEA Rush Catch Pass
QB Jason Campbell     250,2
RB Clinton Portis 60 10  
TE Chris Cooley   50  
WR Santana Moss   90,1  
WR Antwaan Randle El   50,1  
WR Devin Thomas   30  
PK Shaun Suisham 2 FG 2 XP  
Pregame Notes: Tough loss last week even with the surprise appearance and play of Clinton Portis. But the Skins have beaten the Eagles and Cowboys earlier this season and replay the Giants in two weeks. The Skins should be angling to no worse than a 9-7 record and could be better all depending on themselves. This week could be a trap game given that the Giants loom on the other side but being on the road after a loss should be focus enough.

Quarterback: A surprisingly good start to the season has dramatically slowed and likely reflects defenses getting a better idea about the new offense of the Redskins and in particular how Jason Campbell will run it. He only has three scores over the last six games and never more than one per game. He's even been intercepted three times in the last two weeks after going without any until then. But Campbell has cleared the Steelers and Cowboys now and should be the game manager again this week. Campbell could end up with some bad weather games by the end of the year and that makes him even less attractive as a fantasy backup.

Running Backs: Clinton Portis barely practiced last week and appeared unlikely to play against the Cowboys but was able to suit up and gain 68 yards on 15 carries. LaDell Betts and Shaun Alexander only had one carry each in that game so it was still the Portis Show but with lesser results. Portis had gained 121 yards on 21 carries in Dallas but is playing dinged up and nursing a sore knee. These last two weeks have really seen Portis take a nosedive in the stats but he had to face the Steelers and then the motivated Cowboys.

Expect Portis to miss practice time again this week and he could end up getting at least some rest every week from here on out. He has been made the franchise in this new offense and responded well until recently. The Redskins cannot afford to lose him or wear him down any more than necessary.

Wide Receivers: Fortunately there is a key to knowing when to start Santana Moss. He began the season red hot in the new offensive scheme but since has settled down to playing poorly against good secondaries and then exploding against bad secondaries. Moss is the long and short of all Washington receivers this year and no others have any fantasy merit. Moss comes off two very bad weeks but had scored and gained 215 yards over the two previous weeks thanks to Detroit and Cleveland. There is a concern that the Redskins overall are starting to slump a bit with Portis ailing and the offense not passing as well. Add in the likely worse weather and the prospects for Moss go down for the rest of the year.

Tight Ends: He has only one score on the season but otherwise Chris Cooley has been solid this year and rarely spectacular. Campbell has settled down to using him for around seven catches per game with nominal yardage. He's been a decent fantasy plug in but not worthy of where he was usually drafted.

Match Against the Defense: The Seattle defense has been better at home this year but that doesn't mean they've been good. They have not allowed any runners to top 100 yards as a visitor and only given up two rushing scores at home. With Portis still banged up, look for a good game but likely nothing that big and likely no rushing score.

Campbell goes against a secondary that has always given up a passing score in every game this year and the yardage has been above 300 in three games already. Look for the one score and better than usual yardage. There is a chance that he could throw for two scores as well and Campbell has some interesting potential this week.

Gaining Fantasy Points WAS 25 15 21 13 18 31
Preventing Fantasy Points SEA 31 22 32 9 31 18

Seattle Seahawks (2- 8)
Homefield: Qwest Field
  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 34-13 +4.5 42.5
9 PHI 7-26 +6.5 43
10 @MIA 19-21 +9 43
11 ARZ 20-26 +3.5 47.5
12 WAS - +3.5 41.5
13 @DAL - - -
14 NE - - -
15 @STL - - -
16 NYJ - - -
17 @ARZ - - -
SEA vs WAS Rush Catch Pass
QB Matt Hasselbeck     190,1
RB Julius Jones 50    
TE John Carlson   40  
WR Bobby Engram   50  
WR Koren Robinson   30  
WR Deion Branch   60,1  
PK Olindo Mare 2 FG 1 XP  

Pregame Notes: Well, it just doesn't get any better for the Seahawks who still have not won outside of their own division and haven't even been favored in a game for seven weeks (and they lost the last time they were). The return of Matt Hasselbeck did little to spark the offense and last week's loss to the Cardinals was the official passing of the torch in the AFC West. Mike Holmgren has already made it clear that he is taking a sabbatical from football next season which means he will not answer the phone. After this year, he's got a lot of fishing to do so he can regain normal blood pressure.

Quarterback: Matt Hasselbeck's first game back since week five wasn't a celebration when he only threw for 170 yards and one score against three interceptions. In the post game presser, he appeared to be somewhat out of it as if he had been concussed with glazed eyes and not clearly answering questions. Hasselbeck was returning from back and leg injuries but has since insisted that he was not concussed last week. Perhaps he was just shocked to discover what his team has turned into this year.

Running Backs: Julius Jones has cashed the checks and theoretically has another year on his contract but it is unlikely he'll see that with the new coaching staff next year. Jones has not scored since week three and other than two home games against the Rams and 49ers, he's struggled to be even mediocre. Last week had him gaining 19 yards on ten carries and that isn't even his worst on the season. He almost never shares carries with anyone, but does little with the few he gets anyway. A tough remaining schedule will ensure that Jones is just passing through town this year and in particular, his game in Dallas the following week should be telling.

Wide Receivers: With Hasselbeck back, the passing numbers here... did not really change anything. All told last week, this unit combined for only eight catches for 102 yards and no scores divided out among four different wideouts. Deion Branch was the main target with four catches for 54 yards and yet Bobby Engram came is next best with only two catches for 30 yards. And this was against the visiting Cardinals secondary.

The next three games are WAS, @DAL and NE. That should continue to depress whatever this crew could do.

Tight Ends: The rookie John Carlson had three catches for 39 yards with Hasselbeck back last week and that falls into line with what he had been doing in most games this year anyway. Carlson hasn't scored since week seven but remains one of the options for Hasselbeck. That could see some further decline though as Hasselbeck gets up to speed better and starts connecting better with his wideouts.

Match Against the Defense: There is little chance that Jones will see decent rushing numbers this week against a top ten rushing defense. Expect the same mediocre showing as every other game this year.

Hasselbeck is also a concern because he was battered last week and now faces a secondary that likes to apply the pressure. Look for one passing score eventually in this game but any thing beyond that is a big success. The Skins have a solid defense across the board and come off a loss. The scoring will be low here but should definitely favor the Skins.

Gaining Fantasy Points SEA 31 16 31 23 26 19
Preventing Fantasy Points WAS 6 7 8 6 9 16

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