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

Prediction: MIN 20, DET 13

The Vikings come off a thrashing of the Browns thanks to Adrian Peterson while the Lions are on an 18 game losing streak and just allowed Drew Brees to throw for six touchdowns. Let's not ruin the mystery here - Vikings win. Like any other team would have done, the Vikings swept the Lions last year, winning 12-10 at home and then 20-16 in Detroit. The games were lower scoring and closer than the line suggests.

Minnesota Vikings (1-0)
Homefield: Metrodome
  Opp Score Spread Over/Under
1 @CLE 34-20 +3.5 40
2 @DET - -10 47
3 SF - - -
4 GB - - -
5 @STL - - -
6 BAL - - -
7 @PIT - - -
8 @GB - - -
9 BYE - - -
10 DET - - -
11 SEA - - -
12 CHI - - -
13 @ARI - - -
14 CIN - - -
15 @CAR - - -
16 @CHI - - -
17 NYG - - -
MIN at DET Rush Catch Pass
QB Brett Favre     190,1
RB Adrian Peterson 120,1 10  
RB Chester Taylor 20 20  
TE Vishante Shiancoe   40,1  
WR Bernard Berrian   20  
WR Sidney Rice   40  
WR Percy Harvin   50  
PK Ryan Longwell 2 FG 2 XP  
Pregame Notes: The debut of Brett Favre was a non-event since he wisely spend his time feeding Adrian Peterson his ration of carries. The Vikings open with a very kind schedule that could see than undefeated going into week five. That's when a nasty three game streak could result in all losses. It may seem hard to be motivated to play the Lions, but eventually they will win a game and no one wants to be "it".

Quarterback: No straining for old man Brett Favre. He only passed for 110 yards and one score and yet still managed to be sacked four times. These next games will let him acclimate with the team before his big week four when they host the Packers.

The Vikings had Tarvaris Jackson and Gus Frerotte combine for only 175 passing yards with one touchdown in Detroit last year. Frerotte later threw for 296 yards and a score in the home meeting.

Expect more substandard numbers since the rushing game should take care of this. Favre will throw for a score just because that's one more for Peyton to chase but this is not an attractive start. The Vikings always play the Lions to a low scoring affair

Running Backs: La Machine.

Adrian Peterson scorched the Browns for 180 rushing yards and three scores and that still left seven carries for Chester Taylor to take, Peterson has become the franchise and so far the stud running back that no one can stop. This week should be another nice outing since Peterson rushed for 105 yards on 22 carries in Detroit and later had 111 yards on 25 runs at home but never scored against the Lions last year.

He'll notch his 100 yard game here and I like him to score finally.

Wide Receivers: Percy Harvin already has his first NFL score when he caught three passes for 36 yards against the Browns. Bernard Berrian did play despite his hamstring but had no catches from the two passes thrown to him. Berrian will play again this week but his hamstring remains an issue.

No wideout had more than 29 yards in Detroit last year but later Berrian turned five catches into 131 yards and a score in the home matchup. Look for lower numbers this week.

Tight Ends: Vishante Shiancoe managed to catch three passes for 26 yards during the Peterson rushing frenzy in Cleveland. He led all receivers in Detroit when he had five receptions for 65 yards and a score last season. He later only had one catch in the home meeting.

Gaining Fantasy Points MIN 29 2 22 26 3 8
Preventing Fantasy Points    DET 32 28 31 30 28 22

Detroit Lions (0-1)
Homefield: Ford Field
  Opp Score Spread Over/Under
1 @NO 24-45 +13.5 49
2 MIN - +10 47
3 WAS - - -
4 @CHI - - -
5 PIT - - -
6 @GB - - -
7 BYE - - -
8 STL - - -
9 @SEA - - -
10 @MIN - - -
11 CLE - - -
12 GB - - -
13 @CIN - - -
14 @BAL - - -
15 ARI - - -
16 @SF - - -
17 CHI - - -
DET vs MIN Rush Catch Pass
QB Matthew Stafford     180
RB Kevin Smith 60,1 50  
TE Casey Fitzsimmons   10  
WR Calvin Johnson   60  
WR Bryant Johnson   30  
PK Jason Hanson 2 FG 1 XP  

Pregame Notes: The more things change...

The Lions come off a humbling loss™ when the hapless® defense couldn't stop Drew Brees even if they had all been outfitted with .50 caliber Browning machine guns. This makes the 18th loss in a row which means the Lions are no longer minors in the World of Losing™. There are good things happening though and the rookie quarterback is playing very well. It is not all negative here, but until they get a one in the left column, it's all just moral victories.

Quarterback: Matthew Stafford showed some signs of why he was the first player drafted during his 205 yard performance in New Orleans. He still has not thrown for a score but already has a rushing touchdown. He also had three interceptions but that is to be expected from most rookie quarterbacks. With Calvin Johnson around, Stafford will have an easier time getting up to speed.

The Lions passed for 150 yards and one score in the road game against the Vikings and later Dante Culpepper threw for 220 yards and one score in the home meeting.

The Vikings held Quinn to 205 yards and a score last week. That's going to be hard to attain since the Vikings will run the ball and shorten the game. He's worth watching develop but Stafford has a ways to go before he becomes a viable fantasy start.

Running Backs: Kevin Smith only gained 20 yards on 15 carries in New Orleans but had one rushing score. He also had seven receptions for 52 yards and Stafford's closest outlet. That mix of roles will continue and help keep Smith viable to start in most weeks.

Smith gained 62 yards on only five runs in Minnesota last year and later had 64 yards on 21 carries at home. The Vikings on the road in Cleveland allowed Jamal Lewis 57 yards on 11 carries. Expect Smith to have decent total yardage with catches and a score as well.

Wide Receivers: Stafford only had three completions with Calvin Johnson despite throwing a team high 13 times towards him. Johnson converted it into 90 yards and nearly scored. Too early to assess what the full year picture looks like but so far Stafford knows where he needs to thrown and Johnson is getting open even with the added coverage he commands.

Bryant Johnson had a quiet start but his four catches for 45 yards came from eight passes. He too will grow into being a bigger factor as Stafford matures.

Johnson gained 85 yards and a score on four receptions in Minnesota last year and later had three catches for 84 yards and one score in the home meeting. The Vikings secondary is starting out better this season though with no wideout gaining more than 28 yards against them in Cleveland. Expect a lesser game from all wideouts this week.

Tight Ends: The tight ends don't matte much so far. Stafford has gone with Kevin Smith as his preferred outlet so the tight ends remains mainly blockers.

Gaining Fantasy Points DET 21 22 21 30 6 3
Preventing Fantasy Points    MIN 14 9 5 28 26 26

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