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Predictions & Projections
David Dorey
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The Huddle
~ 2009 ~
Season Ticket
Sunday Late

Prediction: IND 20, MIA 13

The Colts squeaked past the visiting Jaguars last week but lost Anthony Gonzalez in the process. The Fins were handled by the Falcons and return for their home opener still searching for a win. This is a coin flip game with both teams playing under their 2008 levels so far. This has a great chance to be one of the more boring Monday night games of the year.

Indianapolis Colts (1-0)
Homefield: Lucas Oil Stadium
  Opp Score Spread Over/Under
1 JAC 14-12 -6.5 44.5
2 @MIA - -3 42
3 @ARI - - -
4 SEA - - -
5 @TEN - - -
6 BYE - - -
7 @STL - - -
8 SF - - -
9 HOU - - -
10 NE - - -
11 @BAL - - -
12 @HOU - - -
13 TEN - - -
14 DEN - - -
15 @JAC - - -
16 NYJ - - -
17 @BUF - - -
IND at MIA Rush Catch Pass
QB Peyton Manning     230,2
RB Joseph Addai 40 30  
RB Donald Brown 30 20  
TE Dallas Clark   40,1  
WR Reggie Wayne   90,1  
WR Austin Collie   20  
WR Pierre Garcon   20  
PK Adam Vinatieri 2 FG 2 XP  

Pregame Notes: The Colts played a better game than the 14-12 score suggests last week but like many teams had just bad things happen at the wrong moments. Manning threw an interception, Addai lost a fumble. Vinatieri missed a field goal. Still, Manning came through and Reggie Wayne had a monster game. The rushing game isn't a game winner yet, but it is better than when it left off last season. The parts are still all there, they just need to work better together.

Quarterback: Peyton Manning started out with his typical 300 yard game with one score and thanks to the loss of Anthony Gonzalez, over half that yardage all came with Reggie Wayne. That cannot happen every week - cool as it is to imagine - so Manning will have to balance the passing attack since Gonzalez is expected to miss significant time.

The Dolphins allowed Matt Ryan 229 passing yards and two scores with no turnovers. Back in Miami, they played far better defense last year when all but one team had less than 235 passing yards and one score. But the exception was Matt Cassel and his 415 yards and three scores. Expect a solid game from Manning this week but less likely he will have a huge game.

Running Backs: Joseph Addai gained 42 yards on 17 carries (2.5 YPC) but scored one touchdown and had five receptions for 35 yards. His role as a receiver could increase with the injury to Anthony Gonzalez.

Donald Brown had his debut and only gained 33 yards on 11 carries. Addai still gets the bigger chunk but not by much. Addai also was used at the goal line for the score.

The Dolphins limited Michael Turner to 65 yards on 22 carries in Atlanta and that doesn't bode well here. Thanks to the split, neither runner is an attractive play this week though another rushing score is possible. Addai is the better option if needed because he'll factor in more as a receiver than Brown.

Wide Receivers: Anthony Gonzalez suffered a knee injury which has progressively getting worse with every update. Now he is expected to miss considerable time but team President Bill Polian said it would not end his season. The Colts are hunting for a replacement which will not include Marvin Harrison. Unfortunately, great receivers are rarely sitting at home and waiting for the phone to ring at this time of the season.

Reggie Wayne warmed every fantasy owners heart when he turned in ten catches for 162 yards and one score against the Jaguars. but he had almost no help from Austin Collie (2-15) or Pierre Garcon (3-24). Wayne should continue to post good numbers despite the certain coverage he will get. He was getting it anyway.

The Dolphins secondary held up Roddy White well enough last week but stopping Wayne will be a tall order. Shy away from starting Garcon or Collie but Wayne is a must start every week.

Tight Ends: Dallas Clark was largely held in check last week when he had just four catches for 39 yards but the Dolphins had a bad time keeping up with Tony Gonzalez of the Falcons last week. Consider Clark the must start you already would. He should manage a score in this game.

Gaining Fantasy Points IND 11 15 5 22 28 30
Preventing Fantasy Points    MIA 23 22 6 26 21 30

Miami Dolphins (0-1)
Homefield: Dolphins Stadium
  Opp Score Spread Over/Under
1 @ATL 7-19 +4 43.5
2 IND - +3 42
3 @SD - - -
4 BUF - - -
5 NYJ - - -
6 BYE - - -
7 NO - - -
8 @NYJ - - -
9 @NE - - -
10 TB - - -
11 @CAR - - -
12 @BUF - - -
13 NE - - -
14 @JAC - - -
15 @TEN - - -
16 HOU - - -
17 PIT - - -
MIA vs IND Rush Catch Pass
QB Chad Pennington     170
RB Ronnie Brown 70,1 10  
RB Ricky Williams 60 20  
TE Anthony Fasano   20  
WR Ted Ginn Jr.   40  
WR Greg Camarillo   30  
WR Davone Bess   40  
PK Dan Carpenter 2 FG 1 XP  

Pregame Notes: The Dolphins opened with a loss but much of that stemmed from losing an interception and three fumbles. The Fins had a lackluster effort all around with few positives in the game. This week continues what is turning out to be a bad schedule since looming games against the Jets and Bills may be tougher than last season. But the offense here has done nothing to upgrade any position so no reason not to expect the same offensive mediocrity of last season.

Quarterback: While Chad Pennington opened the season with an efficient 21 of 29 completion rate, he only passed for 21 yards and one score while losing a fumble and an interception while being sacked four times. The tricks are starting with Patrick White but his first and only pass so far was an incompletion. This remains a very mediocre offense with no apparent spark. Pennington played generally well last year but at least after one week there has not seemed to be any progress.

The Colts secondary only allowed six passing scores during all of last season. Last week Garrard only had 122 yards and no score. Stay away from the Miami passing attack this week.

Running Backs: Ronnie Brown is expected by some to take the next step this year with him being two seasons removed from his knee surgery. But he only had ten carries in the opener that gained 43 yards and his three catches only totaled ten more yards. Worse yet was Ricky Williams looking remarkably spry when he gained 39 yards on seven carries in Atlanta and had two receptions that included a touchdown. Williams is not the one to get in this offense. But maybe no one should be since the duo continues to share at a 60:40 clip that negates the potential one player could have.

The Dolphins need to run to stay in this game and both runners should see some success against the weakness of the Colts. Expect at least one rushing score and the combination to top 100 rushing yards. Just neither by themselves.

Wide Receivers: No major changes here from a squad that had no player over 60 yards last week and none scored. Greg Camarillo got the start over Davone Bess but only had two catches for 20 yards while Bess had a team high seven receptions for 57 yards. Ted Ginn only managed 26 yards on two catches. The fantasy value in this unit is questionable at best and unreliable in all cases. Meeting the Colts secondary makes them an even less attractive option for you this week.

Tight Ends: Anthony Fasano may see a decrease in use for a while. He only had two catches for ten yards against the Falcons and managed to lose both as fumbles recovered by Atlanta. Hands off Fasano for now.

Gaining Fantasy Points MIA 26 18 24 24 30 28
Preventing Fantasy Points    IND 1 21 2 6 13 12

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