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David Dorey
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The Huddle
WEEK 3
~ 2009 ~
Season Ticket
Sunday
Sunday
Sunday
Sunday
Monday
Sunday Late
*updated

Prediction: WAS 23, DET 16

Saturday Update: Campbell returned to a full practice and will start with no limitations. Portis was limited all week to rest his ankles and did not practice on Friday but is expected to play despite being listed as questionable. HC Jim Zorn himself said he expected Portis to be playing.

Friday Update: Clinton Portis and Jason Campbell were both limited in practice this week but are expected to play on Sunday without limitation.

The Redskins have to avoid becoming "IT" by letting the Lions end their 19 game losing streak. The Skins came close enough to the unthinkable when they barely beat the Rams who were the visitors. Chances they were caught looking forward to this game? Not very good. The Lions at home are better but as their record shows - never good enough.

The Skins won 25-17 in Detroit last season.

Washington Redskins (1-1)
Homefield: FedEx Field
Grass
  Opp Score Spread Over/Under
1 @NYG 17-23 +6.5 37
2 STL 9-7 -10 37
3 @DET - -6.5 38
4 TB - - -
5 @CAR - - -
6 KC - - -
7 PHI - - -
8 BYE - - -
9 @ATL - - -
10 DEN - - -
11 @DAL - - -
12 @PHI - - -
13 NO - - -
14 @OAK - - -
15 NYG - - -
16 DAL - - -
17 @SD - - -
WAS at DET Rush Catch Pass
QB Jason Campbell 20   250,1
RB Clinton Portis 80,1 10  
RB Ladell Betts 20 20  
TE Chris Cooley   80,1  
WR Santana Moss   70  
WR Antwaan Randle El   40  
WR Malcolm Kelly   20  
PK Shaun Suisham 2 FG 2 XP  
Pregame Notes: It was bad enough to barely clip the Rams last week but even worse to be unable to score a touchdown. After two weeks, the Skins only have one offensive touchdown and what should have been a formidable rushing game has yet to take off. Losing RG Randy Thomas for the season is going to make it even tougher to run. The defense remains better that most but yet again the offense is not taking off.

Quarterback: Jason Campbell admitted that he played Sunday's game with a sprained right ankle. Then again he ran seven times for 28 yards and passed for 242 without a turnover or touchdown. If there is one central reason why the offense remains stagnant despite several seasons of tinkering it is because of Campbell who has proven to be just another average quarterback who has never taken the next step. Being under HC Jim Zorn was supposed to jump start his development but he seems forever stuck at 200 yards and one score in most games. He is expected to be limited in practice this week because of his ankle but I will assume he will play without much limitation.

Campbell passed for 328 yards and one score in Detroit last year.

The Lions have already given up eight passing touchdowns thanks to Drew Brees and Brett Favre. Campbell had a decent game there last year and should manage the same sort of numbers.

Running Backs: Clinton Portis has only gained 141 yards on 35 carries this year without any scores or almost any receiving yards. Especially troublesome was when he could gain more than 79 yards against the visiting Rams. The loss of Randy Thomas will only make matters worse. On the plus side, Ladell Betts has been little more than a third down back that has not detracted from Portis at all. That is fortunate since there is not much there to share.

Portis gained 126 yards on 24 carries versus the Lions last season.

The Lions are giving up 100+ rushing yards per opponent but held Adrian Peterson to only 92 yards and a score last week in Detroit. Look for a decent game by Portis but not as big as it was last year. Portis just doesn't look as good running this year.

Wide Receivers: So far only Antwaan Randle El has turned in something remotely close to a decent game. Last week none of the wideouts had more than 41 yards and have not scored this season. Santana Moss has a whopping five catches for 41 yards on the season and Malcolm Kelly has taken his new role as the flanker and only managed five receptions for 57 yards. This offense doesn't throw well and not just because the first two opponents were tough. The Rams? They allowed Seattle three passing scores.

Santana Moss had nine catches for 140 yards and a score in Detroit last year, no other wideout had more than one catch. I am going to project a decent game for Moss since he typically has one of his few decent games each year in favorable venues like this but he is still a risk to do much. The Skins passing has been poor at best and leans heavily on Chris Cooley.

Tight Ends: Chris Cooley has retained his fantasy value despite being the only Redskin who has delivered. He has the only touchdown scored by the offense and both games produced seven catches for either 68 or 83 yards. That is astronomic in this offense.

Cooley turned in six receptions for 74 yards in Detroit last year. The Lions have allowed three touchdowns to tight ends already this year. No reason to expect less than a good game from Cooley.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points WAS 23 27 30 7 16 23
Preventing Fantasy Points    DET 32 26 28 29 28 24


Detroit Lions (0-2)
Homefield: Ford Field
FieldTurf
  Opp Score Spread Over/Under
1 @NO 24-45 +13.5 49
2 MIN 13-27 +10 47
3 WAS - +6.5 38.5
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 WAS Rush Catch Pass
QB Matthew Stafford     150,1
RB Kevin Smith 60 40  
WR Calvin Johnson   60,1  
WR Bryant Johnson   30  
WR Dennis Northcutt   10  
PK Jason Hanson 3 FG 1 XP  

Pregame Notes: When you lost 19 games, what's one more really going to matter? This week is a decent shot at a win though Vegas will disagree. The Lions best chance probably lies in week eight when the Rams come to visit. The bigger issue remains the defense and so far the offense under Matthew Stafford has shown promise. If the Lions can acquire another playmaker beyond Calvin Johnson, the offense can compete but until the defense improves, the losses will just continue to pile up.

Quarterback: Matthew Stafford is still very much a rookie quarterback and it has not helped that only Calvin Johnson has been much help. Stafford passed for his first NFL touchdown last week against the Vikings but had two interceptions to add to the three in New Orleans. No surprise for a rookie on a bad team but he is making progress. Soon as any other receiver can step up, Stafford will improve but he needs more seasoning to have the confidence to throw it to more than Johnson.

The Redskins have given up one passing score per game but it is too early to expect much yardage from Stafford. He remains outside fantasy relevance so far.

Running Backs: Kevin Smith remains the only other solid contributor outside of Calvin Johnson. He gained 83 yards on 24 carries against the visiting Vikings but stepped down to just two catches for 10 yards after an eye-popping seven receptions in week one. With almost no sharing with other backs, Smith remains a decent fantasy play but needs to resume his role as a receiver to be more than just another mediocre back.

Smith only gained 12 rushing yards on four carries but had seven receptions for 50 yards when the Skins visited in 2008. The Skins rush defense has been surprisingly soft considering the addition of Albert Haynesworth and Steven Jackson rolled up 107 rushing yards last week in Washington. Look for another moderate rushing game but with enough catches to make Smith a decent play this week.

Wide Receivers: There is only one. Calvin "Megatron" Johnson has been almost the entirety of the receiving for the Lions and even then he's only totaled eight catches for 141 yards and one score this year. Typically one long catch each week has salvaged his fantasy value. Bryant Johnson had a minor role in week one but then was blanked against the Vikings. If Johnson could turn in more catches and yards each week, it would have a dramatic effect on this offense. But until then, it's just pitch and catch with Megatron each week hoping there are not too many interceptions.

Johnson only managed four catches for 57 yards but scored once against the Skins last season.

The Skins have already allowed a passing score to a wideout in both games and will no doubt try to contain Johnson. I am giving him the lone passing score because so far he is the only player capable of catching it.

Tight Ends: No fantasy value.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points DET 25 21 26 29 12 8
Preventing Fantasy Points    WAS 6 7 19 8 13 22

The Huddle
WEEK 3
~ 2009 ~
Season Ticket
Sunday
Sunday
Sunday
Sunday
Monday
Sunday Late
Other Features
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Early Injury Report
Free Agent Forecast
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