The Huddle on Facebook Facebook   The Huddle on Twitter Twitter   The Huddle Mobile Mobile Welcome, GuestJOINHELP


Predictions & Projections
David Dorey
Sortable Player Projections
Game Predictions Summary

Projections by Team
Print this page Print 
The Huddle
~ 2009 ~
Season Ticket
Bye Week

Prediction: MIN 23, GB 24

Late Update: Jermichael Finley is out as expected and never practiced. Aaron Rodgers had a full day of practice on Friday and is good to go. Bernard Berrian was limited again on Friday and while he likely will play I have decreased his projections slightly since he will not be healthy anyway. Percy Harvin has missed practices the last two days because of migraines but is expected to play.

Early Update: Jermichael Finley has not practiced and although they are not ruling him out it is not likely to see him this week. His knee is being rehabbed but he’s not reliable this week in any case.  Aaron Rodgers has been limited in practice because of his foot but should have a full day Friday and play with no limitation. Bernard Berrian was held out on Wednesday and had some limited work on Thursday. I am not changing his projections yet but he is no lock to play and would be limited in any case. Friday’s practice will yield a clearer status for him. Brett Favre has been limited to rest his hip but he would play in Green Bay even if he was in a wheelchair – no problem with him playing.

This is a critical game in the NFC North since the Vikings can take a two and a half game lead plus have the first tie breaker over the Packers who are 4-2. But a win by the Packers puts them only a half game back with half a season left to play. These divisional rivals traded home wins in 2008 with the Packers winning the season opener 24-19 and the Vikings later squeaking past 28-27. The Vikings won 30-23 in the first matchup in Minnesota this season.

Of course this is the Brett Favre Bowl II, with Favre not only facing his old team but playing in Green Bay for an added surreal quality. Favre put on a nice show at home but now plays on his turf. I mean their turf. Whatever. The camera crew will spend 90% of this game searching for stupid signs or any other vestiges of Brett Favre.

One thought - how can this game go off and not have any snow? That is a travesty.

Minnesota Vikings (6-1)
Homefield: Metrodome
  Opp Score Spread Over/Under
1 @CLE 34-20 +3.5 40
2 @DET 27-13 -10 47
3 SF 27-24 -7 40.5
4 GB 30-23 -3.5 46
5 @STL 38-10 -10 39
6 BAL 33-31 -3 44.5
7 @PIT 17-27 +6 46.5
8 @GB - +3 47
9 BYE - - -
10 DET - - -
11 SEA - - -
12 CHI - - -
13 @ARI - - -
14 CIN - - -
15 @CAR - - -
16 @CHI - - -
17 NYG - - -
Favre at GB Rush Catch Pass
QB Brett Favre     290,2
RB Adrian Peterson 70 10  
TE Vishante Shiancoe   40,1  
WR Bernard Berrian   30  
WR Sidney Rice   100,1  
WR Percy Harvin   60  
PK Ryan Longwell 3 FG 2 XP  

Pregame Notes: The Vikings fell from the ranks of the unbeaten with the loss to the Steelers last week, and they are not favored against the same team they beat by ten points just a month ago. With only the bye week on the other side, this is a must win for the Vikes because it means freedom from the schedule knowing they can stay ahead of the Packers for the division title. And the remaining schedule doesn't look all that bad. But above all, this is Brett Favre...Favre... arve... At Lambeau.... Lambeau... Lambeau... beau...beau... o...

A nice drinking game would be to take shots with every interview that mentions Favre, and drink the pitcher for every photo montage.

Quarterback: Favre. Brett Favre.

How weird is it to play in a stadium with your name on the street outside?

Favre passed for 271 yards and three scores when the Packers visited Minnesota this year. Now we get to see how well he adheres to his trend. Favre has passed for multiple touchdowns in four games - three were at home and one was in Detroit (155 yards, 2 TDs). In all three home games, Favre passed for at least two if not three touchdowns. He never had less than 278 yards at home. He is not at home this week.

The best any quarterback has done against the Packers was Favre. The most any opposing team has done in Green Bay was the Bengals who had Carson Palmer passed for 185 yards and three touchdowns. But this game has the potential to not follow past trends and it is not going to be "by the numbers" because the variables of Favre wanting to do well, the Packers wanting him not to and wanting Rodgers to look better, all the divisional drama and such. But you have to like this game to not be low scoring. I'll expect Favre to pass for healthy yardage and at least two scores. He'll light it up if he can.

Running Backs: Adrian Peterson is currently second to only Cedric Benson with 720 rushing yards and he is on track for 1600+ yards on the season. He has an NFL high eight rushing touchdowns and has either a score or 99+ yards in every game this year. Peterson rushed for just 55 yards on 25 carries but scored once against the visiting Packers this season.

The Packers at home have not allowed a runner to score in three games and only Benson had more than 61 rushing yards. Peterson suffered a bit to the pass happy Favre last time and that could certainly happen again this week and the Packers legitimately have a stout rushing defense. I like Peterson to post at least decent numbers this week but not to score against the #1 defense against the run.

Wide Receivers: Bernard Berrian pulled his hamstring in the second quarter last Sunday and his status this week will be determined in practice. Berrian has only been a bit player in the passing offense and his three touchdowns all came in home games. I will assume he can play at least limited and update as needed.

Percy Harvin is always limited in practice because of his shoulder but he always plays. He has not scored offensively since week two and had a high of 66 yards on the year. Sidney Rice is the clear primary receiver on this team with two scores and two monster games when the Vikings needed him most. Rice gained 176 yards on the Ravens and then had 136 yards on 11 receptions in Pittsburgh. Favre has truly brought Rice into being one of the most productive wideouts in the league.

Rice (5-70) and Berrian (6-76) both scored once against the visiting Packers this year. Harvin only had 39 yards on two receptions.

Tight Ends: Visanthe Shiancoe had a three game scoring streak end in Pittsburgh but he has scored in four of the last six games including two times against the Ravens. His yardage remains below 50 each week but he usually scores. Shiancoe scored once but only had three catches for 18 yards against the visiting Packers in week four. I like him to get another touchdown this week.

Gaining Fantasy Points MIN 16 4 9 18 4 3
Preventing Fantasy Points    GB 11 1 10 12 2 17

Green Bay Packers (4-2)
Homefield: Lambeau Field
  Opp Score Spread Over/Under
1 CHI 21-15 -4 46
2 CIN 24-31 -9 42
3 @STL 36-17 -6.5 41
4 @MIN 23-30 +3.5 46
5 BYE - - -
6 DET 26-0 -13.5 47.5
7 @CLE 31-3 -9.5 41.5
8 MIN - -3 47
9 @TB - - -
10 DAL - - -
11 SF - - -
12 @DET - - -
13 BAL - - -
14 @CHI - - -
15 @PIT - - -
16 SEA - - -
17 @ARI - - -
GB vs Favre Rush Catch Pass
QB Aaron Rodgers     320,3
RB Ryan Grant 60 50  
TE Donald Lee   30,1  
TE Spencer Havner   30  
WR Greg Jennings   60  
WR Donald Driver   80,1  
WR James Jones   30,1  
PK Mason Crosby 1 FG 3 XP  

Pregame Notes: The Packers need this win to maintain hopes of the playoffs if not the division but the schedule is dotted with very easy and very tough games. A win here ensures nothing but there is the entire emotional content to this. Favre the iconic Packer returns to Lambeau wearing a Vikings uniform. Just seems wrong. John Wayne was never an indian. Bruce Willis has never been a terrorist. And the crowd will react to Favre to be sure. And the Packers coaches and players would just as soon crush the Vikes and make their lives easier. It will be an interesting game, photo montages or not.

Quarterback: Aaron Rodgers has been on a nice streak for four games of throwing for at least 250 yards and two touchdowns. He currently has 11 passing scores and only two interceptions though he has been sacked 25 times already including a season high eight times in the Minnesota game. Rodgers passed for 384 yards and two scores when he visited the Vikes in week four. So far Rodgers biggest game came in Minnesota.

Rodgers already had the high game against the Vikings though Joe Flacco did almost the exact same to them as well. I like Rodgers with a chip on his shoulder in this game.

Running Backs: Ryan Grant comes off his best effort of the year when he gained148 yards on 27 carries and scored once in Cleveland. That was only his third touchdown of the year and first since week two. It was also his first effort over 100 yards. Grant only gained 51 yards on 11 rushes in Minnesota this year but tacked on four catches for 50 yards. that was his only notable yardage as a receiver so this week will be interesting to see if he falls back into that role or not.

The Vikings have a top rushing defense though and have allowed only one runner to score against them. Figure on Grant producing about as much as he did in week four and hope that his role as a receiver continues.

Wide Receivers: Donald Driver (4-55) and Greg Jennings (3-31) had quiet games against the Viking in week four but Jordy Nelson scored once and had 47 yards on three catches. Most of the action went to Jermichael Finley that week. but Driver remains highly productive this year with that game in Minnesota as his only without a score and/or 100 yards. His three touchdowns lead the receivers. Greg Jennings is still in his funk of no scoring and only moderate yardage in the last several weeks. James Jones has scored in the last two games while never turning in more than 55 yards. With Finley out this week, at least some of that workload ends up here and likely James Jones gets the bump in production because of it.

The Vikings are average against wideouts particularly on the road and at least two of the scores should end up here. That naturally favors Driver and Jones since Jennings has just not been able to score yet. Driver is a must start but Jones and Jennings have upside if you are scraping the free agent barrel for a wideout this week.

Tight Ends: Jermichael FInley was having a break out season but suffered a knee sprain last week and will miss at least this game and potentially the Tampa Bay point-fest the following weekend. Donald Lee will continue his role as a possession tight end for three or four catches per week and Spencer Havner will also get more work. He replaced Finley last Sunday and had two catches for 59 yards and a touchdown. I like one score and decent yardage to come from the tight ends. Finley had 128 yards and a score in the first meeting.

Gaining Fantasy Points GB 4 22 10 4 6 5
Preventing Fantasy Points    MIN 17 5 13 31 17 21

The Huddle
~ 2009 ~
Season Ticket
Bye Week
Other Features
Fantasy Statistics
Early Injury Report
Free Agent Forecast
Commentary From the Edge
Game Recaps
Tunnel Vision
a d v e r t i s e m e n t