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Predictions & Projections
David Dorey
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The Huddle
WEEK 10
~ 2009 ~
Season Ticket
Thursday
Sunday
Sunday
Sunday
Monday
Sunday
Bye Week
Sunday Late
NYG, HOU
*updated

Prediction: DAL 27, GB 20

Late Update: Finley did not practice and is already called out for Sunday.

Early Update: Jermichael Finley was considered 50/50 to play this week but has not practiced. Short of a full day on Friday and a glowing report, consider him out this week.

The Cowboys rise to 6-2 with their win in Philly and with that take a one game lead in the NFC East with a four game winning streak. The Packers fall to 4-4 after losing in Tampa Bay and eliminating the final NFL team without a win. The Cowboys are 3-1 on the road and the Packers are just 2-2 at home.

The Cowboys won 27-16 in Green Bay last year.

Dallas Cowboys (6-2)
Homefield: Cowboys Stadium
RealGrass
  Opp Score Spread Over/Under
1 @TB 34-21 -5 39
2 NYG 31-33 -3 43.5
3 CAR 21-7 -9 46
4 @DEN 10-17 -3 43
5 @KC 26-20 -9 42.5
6 BYE - - -
7 ATL 37-21 -5.5 47.5
8 SEA 38-17 -10 46
9 @PHI 20-16 +3 47.5
10 @GB - -3 47.5
11 WAS - - -
12 OAK - - -
13 @NYG - - -
14 SD - - -
15 @NO - - -
16 @WAS - - -
17 PHI - - -
DAL at GB Rush Catch Pass
QB Tony Romo     260,2
RB Marion Barber 50,1 20  
RB Felix Jones 30 10  
TE Jason Witten   50  
WR Roy Williams   60,1  
WR Patrick Crayton   40  
WR Miles Austin   60,1  
PK Nick Folk 2 FG 3 XP  
Pregame Notes: Winning in Philly puts a whole new slant on the season for the Cowboys who had been 2-2 and hating life but now are 6-2 and looking like a possible contender for a playoff spot. There are future games like @NYG and @NO that will be very big tests but the NFC East is apparently less formidable this year and as long as no one can stop Miles Austin, then the Cowboys have a chance. No one so far.

Quarterback: The good Tony Romo has been back for the last four weeks and maybe it is not just because of an easy schedule. Romo passed for a score in each of the last four games and had a total of nine touchdowns in that time,. He has also been over 300 yards in all but the easy win over the visiting Seahawks. Just as important - only one interception in that time and it actually was not returned for a touchdown like most the early ones.

Romo passed for 260 yards and one touchdown in Green Bay last year.

The Packers secondary is no where near as good as the ranking may suggest and four different quarterbacks have thrown for three or more scores against them. They are good against the run though and that will force Romo to throw with at least decent results. Expect decent yardage and at least two scores with a chance for a third if Barber is unable to find the endzone.

Running Backs: The Cowboys unveiled their own version of the wildcat last week using Tashard Choice as the direct snap player which means all three backs are again involved and destined to decrease each other's production. Felix Jones only had four carries last week instead of his standard eight and has no reliable fantasy starting quality to him. Marion Barber still produces moderate numbers but is capped around 14 carries each week which so far lands him around 50 yards per week with the occasional reception in road games.

The Cowboys had a big game rushing in Green Bay last season. Marion Barber ran 28 times for 142 yards and one touchdown and Felix Jones had 76 yards on six carries and a score as well.

This time around you can only rely on moderate numbers from Barber as the only fantasy significant player in this backfield. The Packers have been stingy with scores but Barber is as good as any near the endzone.

Wide Receivers: The Cowboys are trying to involve Roy Williams more and he had a season high eight targets last week with five catches for 75 yards. It is imperative - or at least more cost effective- to get him involved if only to stop the booing in home games when he drops another pass. Miles Austin has now scored in his fourth straight game and again - game winner. But it was his only catch and came late. He's bound to not score eventually. The Cowboys also used Kevin Ogletree for a couple of catches while Romo tries to spread the ball around enough that eventually Austin can get open for a long one.

No wideout had more than 17 yards in Green Bay last year other than Miles Austin who turned two catches into 115 yards and the lone passing score.

The Packers are actually weaker against split ends which means Miles Austin all over again. Three of the home games of the Packers have featured the split end scoring against them. And Dallas will bide their time until Austin can get free so I like both Roy Williams and Austin to score this week.

Tight Ends: It is truly official. Jason Witten is a very solid tight end but no longer an elite one. He does account for four or five catches per week but has only one score on the season and has now gone past several defenses that were weak against the fight ends. Romo still does not look for him near the endzone.

Witten ended with 67 yards on seven receptions.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points DAL 9 14 8 12 7 12
Preventing Fantasy Points GB 17 2 9 15 5 23


Green Bay Packers (4-3)
Homefield: Lambeau Field
Grass
  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 26-38 -3.5 46.5
9 @TB 28-38 -10 43.5
10 DAL - +3 47.5
11 SF - - -
12 @DET - - -
13 BAL - - -
14 @CHI - - -
15 @PIT - - -
16 SEA - - -
17 @ARI - - -
GB vs DAL Rush Catch Pass
QB Aaron Rodgers     280,2
RB Ryan Grant 50 10  
TE Donald Lee   20,1  
WR Greg Jennings   60,1  
WR Donald Driver   90  
WR James Jones   40  
PK Mason Crosby 2 FG 2 XP  

Pregame Notes: The loss in Tampa Bay was painful signaled that the Packers not only could not beat really good teams, they cannot even beat all the really bad ones either. The Packers offense has scored at least 26 points each game since the week five bye week but facing quality opponents have given up back-to-back losses with 38 points allowed. This week is the first time that the Packers are not favored at home and the Cowboys are vulnerable coming off a big road win with a four game winning streak.

Quarterback: Blame whomever on the Packers for their problems but do not include Aaron Rodgers who has thrown for at least two scores in each of the last six games, remained above 250 yards in each, tossed in a couple of rushing scores and, oh yes, is getting brutalized by the pass rush that has sacked him 37 times already this season. There were only six quarterbacks with more sacks in all of last season. The Packers are only halfway through the season. He is on pace for 74 sacks which would be two less than the NFL all-time record. The chances that teams blitz Rodgers is really kind of high by this point.

Rodgers passed for 290 yards and rushed in one score against the visiting Cowboys last year.

The Cowboys have allowed every opponent to throw for at least one score and most have two touchdowns. None have three though and since week one no opponent has thrown for more than 250 yards. Expect Rodgers to challenge that mark and to get the two scores. The Cowboys secondary is only average and due to let down a little after a good week nine showing.

Running Backs: Ryan Grant comes off a 96-yard effort with one score in Tampa Bay and has scored a total of four times on the season but he's been mediocre at best. Against weak opponents, Grant has been solid but when facing teams with winning records he is stuck at around 50 rushing yards and no scores. Ahman Green has rejoined the team and while he had six carries for 45 yards in Tampa Bay, I am not including him in the projections yet. That was one game against a bad team.

The Packers only rushed for 74 yards and no scores against the Cowboys last season.

The Cowboys rushing defense has been stellar since week one with just one rushing touchdown allowed. Look for a lower output game again for Grant.

Wide Receivers: Rodgers love affair with Donald Driver continues with his fourth score on the season and continued string of games over 60 yards per week. Driver is as consistent as any receiver with moderate yardage and always has a chance for a higher effort. One odd trend - three of his scores were in road games. Greg Jennings has been consistent in the last month with moderate yardage and while he has only scored twice, both did happen in home games. James Jones popped up for a career best game of 103 yards and a score in Tampa Bay and that was his third touchdown in the last four games. But his yardage had not ben more than 55 yards until last week.

Jennings had eight receptions for 115 yards and Driver ended with 76 yards on four catches when the Cowboys visited last year.

The Cowboys secondary is most usually victimized by the #1 wideout of the opponent but that is the split end on most teams. The Packers rely more on the flanker Driver who has the tougher matchup with Terence Newman. I like Jennings to actually score this week but Driver should continues with solid yardage at the least. Jones could come into play as well.

Tight Ends: The Cowboys have been good against tight ends this year with none gaining more than 58 yards but three have scored a touchdown against them and there should be an opening for a tight end score this week. Jermichael Finley may return this week but currently is "50/50" according to him. I will credit Donald Lee with a score but it could end up with Spencer Havner just as easily. I will update if Jermichael looks likely to play. He is currently a game time decision.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points GB 1 22 9 4 8 11
Preventing Fantasy Points DAL 20 12 24 14 13 7

The Huddle
WEEK 10
~ 2009 ~
Season Ticket
Thursday
Sunday
Sunday
Sunday
Monday
Sunday
Bye Week
Sunday Late
NYG, HOU
Other Features
Fantasy Statistics
Early Injury Report
Free Agent Forecast
Commentary From the Edge
Game Recaps
Tunnel Vision
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