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Week 11
11/18/04

Week 11
Sunday - 1:00 PM EST Sunday, 4:00 PM EST
NYJ at CLE - CB ATL at NYG - AD
PIT at CIN - CB WAS at PHI - AD
SF at TB - CB MIA at SEA - CB
STL at BUF - CB SD at OAK - CB
TEN at JAX - CB  
ARI at CAR - AD Sunday - 8:30 PM EST
DAL at BAL - AD GB at HOU - CB
DEN at NO - AD Monday - 9:00 PM EST
DET at MIN - AD NE at KC - AD
IND at CHI - AD  

Last Week's Projections
(9-5) Straight Up - 64.2%
(9-5) Against The Spread - 64.2%

For The Season
(83-61) Straight Up - 57.6%
(80-62-2) Against The Spread - 56.2%

N.Y. Jets at Cleveland (pick) , 1:00 pm
Horrible coaching last week in Giants Stadium. First, the team allowed 30 seconds to expire off the clock to go from 49 to 19 seconds with the game on the line. The coaching staff blamed the QB but this was not the first time a Herman Edwards coached team has had problems with clock management. Q-Car looked great in the first half and then couldn't hit the south side of a barn in the second. That was vintage Quincy and the reason why he couldn't earn the starting job in Dallas. My grandmother is more accurate with her dart throwing than he is with a football. I have never seen more ground ball 10 yard outs than what Carter throws. Curtis Martin tried his best to keep the Jets in it with 119 yards and 2 TDS but it wasn't enough. This team is in bad shape unless Carter can gather some magic. The defense played ok but really the Ravens offense was not that much of a challenge.

A lot of hot air was spent at Cleveland last week as Gerrard Warren was spewing about knocking Big Ben in the head. I didn't see much of that game but his stat line said one tackle and I do not think that was on Ben. Great line by Shannon Sharpe about how Warren should worry more about paying the Browns back their salary that has been wasted on him for four years and not paying the fines to the league. Another Browns pick that wound up a bust. Basically the Browns were outclassed and did absolutely nothing on offense. I hear some dissension in the ranks from Garcia who says the Browns offense is too predictable. I can see that. They suck. Lee Suggs is doing nothing right now. With no running game team are laying the wood to Garcia and his numbers have suffered. I think they will have enough firepower to beat the Jets. As they will put a little heat on Carter. If you look at Big Ben's line it was not all that great. Only 134 yards and 1 interception and Carter is no Big Ben.

Final Score: Browns 23, Jets 20

Pittsburgh (-4 ½) at Cincinnati, 1:00 p.m
It was a trap game for the Steelers last week as they were coming off big wins against the Pats and Eagles but the handled it beautifully. The numbers from an offensive standpoint were not great. They really didn't run over the Browns but the defense did. Just like Steeler teams of old they really put in on them with a relentless pass rush getting to Garcia 4 times. They caused four turnovers including two interceptions and two fumbles. I think they will be doing the same to the Bengals. This is another trap game as they are clearly the better team but I think they will need to be better offensively than they were last week. Jerome Bettis looks like he will be the man again this week as Staley is not ready to go again. Look for the Bus, Ben, and Burress to have big games. If you have the defense start it again as well. Hopefully this week there will be no fights with Joey Porter. What a stupid ass.

The Bengals beat a pitiful Skins team that had the preseason eye this year. Obviously, Gibbs is having problems and probably will continue to have trouble as the Skins dive into cap hell in the future. But to the Bengals. They really needed this win as they are 4-5 and still in the playoff race. Palmer tossed the rock a lot with 39 attempts and completed a good 24 of them. However only for 217 yards which makes his completion yardage a mere 6 yards per catch. He has to cut down on his interceptions as he made two possibly costly mistakes in the final quarters. They will have some problems moving the ball against this defense. They are dialed in and will take advantage of the Bengals pitiful offensive line. Rudi Johnson returned to the 100-yard club with 102 on Sunday. However play the Johnson brothers this week, as they seem to strive against good teams and talent.

Final Score: Steelers 28, Bengals 20

San Francisco (+ 8) at Tampa Bay, 1:00 p.m.
Seems like a lot of points to me. The 49ers are horrible but the Bucs are not the Colts. It just seems to me that 8 points is a little steep. San Francisco didn't play horrible against the Panthers they just made way too many turnovers. Rattay had five turnovers and that just can't happen and expect to win. Barlow has been a major disappointment this season as he was seen in most drafts to be a top RB for most teams. He, as well as his team, has failed miserably. Chad Wilson is an up and coming receiver that I think might be further along than Brandon Lloyd at this point. I think the have just enough offense to stay with the Bucs but will lose this game because the Bucs have defense and the 49ers do not.

The Bucs got manhandled by the Falcons tough D. Giving up a lot of sacks at 7 at last count. That goes to show what an anemic running game will be to you. The Falcons just teed off on Griese like he was a big fat golf ball. The Bucs have had some success with Pittman this year as he has run for 100 yards a few times but they need more consistency from their offense. Mark Clayton had a great game with 6 catches for 90 yards. I think the defense will end up winning this game for the Bucs but they will not blow them out of the stadium.

Final Score: Bucs 21, 49ers 17

St. Louis (-1 ) at Buffalo, 1:00 p.m
I am not too fond of this pick. The Rams are not the same team away from the dome. This team has burned me before when they went to Miami and got the crap kicked out of them. But they really did a number on the Seahawks, as they really never let them into the game. They gave up crazy yards to Alexander as he racked up 176 but they got some running yards of their own as Faulk finally looked like Faulk with 139 yards. Jackson added another 47 to the total. Isaac Bruce continues to deny logic and has had a really good season when most folks thought he would fade away this year. I think Bulger, Faulk, Holt, and Bruce should have good games but not great as Buffalo's defense is not bad.

Not a great game for Buffalo. I don't think I have ever seen a more pitiful performance on offense. They really got absolutely nothing going. Bledsoe had 76 yards passing. Are you freaking kidding me?? 76 yards?? It was hard to tell in this game at times who exactly Bledsoe was playing for. He throw about a third of his completions to the other team. Nobody had any stats that would make you want to start them on your fantasy team. Quite honestly if they hadn't run a punt back for a TD then they would have been shut out. I think tough offensively they should be better this week. Maybe start Moulds and McGahee.

Final Score: Rams 27, Bills 20

Tennessee at Jacksonville (-3) , 1:00 p.m
I like Garrard as a QB he is the dual threat that you like in a QB. He had 198 passing yards and 42 rushing yards. That went along with 2 TDS. It looks like Jimmy Smith is his favorite target as he looked for him early and often. Smith ended up with 109 yards and a TD. Fred Taylor wore down the Lions with 144 yards and really controlled the game. The defense was tight as well because the Lions only managed 121 passing yards and 81 rushing yards. Harrington only completed 28% of his passes. That is good, solid, defense. I think Garrard will be another good start in this game along with Taylor and Smith.

The Titans seem to be a faded team. Losing to the Bears in OT by giving up a safety. That is pretty disgraceful. They are now 3-6 and probably do not have a chance at the playoffs. Volek did not do a bad job as he had 334 yards and a TD. Drew Bennett had a huge game with 144 yards and a TD. But they are a much better team than the Bears and should not have let Craig Krenzel and a team with practically no offense beat them. That shows a lack of heart and desire. I think they will be tough to come back from. Especially against a solid defense like the Jags. I think I will would only start Brown in this game. I don't think Volek will be able to make a big dent on this D.

Final Score: Jags 28, Titans 20

Arizona (+2.5) at Carolina, 1:00 p.m.
Emmitt Smith has left Walter Payton's career rushing record in the dust, has long surpassed Marcus Allen's rushing touchdown record, and is on pace to gain 1,124 yards this season on the ground. If he plays another two games, he'll surpass Allen's 222 games at running back - the most in NFL history.

The Cardinals will continue to use Smith - who is tied for sixth in the NFL with 8 rushing touchdowns - as long as he's still reaching the end zone. And Josh McCown will continue to put in Kyle Boller-like performances. Play Emmitt and sit Josh against a Panthers defense that still manages to get it done despite the team's humble 2-7 record. While it would be safe to play Anquan Boldin and Larry Fitzgerald as #3 fantasy receivers based on their potential alone, don't expect much from these guys this week. On defense, keep playing DB Adrian Wilson and DL Bert Berry (4 sacks last week). Also, take a look at rookie LB Karlos Dansby, who was solid against the Giants last week.

The Panthers will have their hands full with the hot Arizona Cardinals, especially with still more injuries in the backfield. If QB Jake Delhomme plays, he'd still be a questionable start, although I might still take a shot with Keary Colbert and/or Muhsin Muhammed. Don't mess around with any of the Carolina RBs, since they look like the walking wounded and play even worse. On defense, I've said it before and I'll say it again...LB Will witherspoon, DL Julius Peppers and DB Mike Minter.

Final Score: Cards 23, Panthers 17

Dallas (+8) at Baltimore, 1:00 p.m.
Other than TE Jason Witten, how useless is Dallas right now? I've see better performances in Ed Wood movies.

The Cowboys are getting no respect right now, but maybe that's because their coach is treating them like Dwight Yoakam treated Billy Bob Thornton in Sling Blade. All those guys need is some country lovin' and a few French fried per-taters. You can't call somebody stupid and expect them to respond, and I'm sickened by the fact that Parcells thinks he is somehow beyond reproach. If I were Jerry Jones, I'd have a serious talk with Parcells about curbing the blame game and moving forward with the rest of the season. Now that I've got that off my chest, he's the poop: Witten and Keyshawn are the only fantasy starts on offense worthy of any value. On defense, I'd give the okay to DL Greg Ellis, LB Dat Nguyen and DB Roy Williams.

The Ravens might get gothic like a Poe novel on the Cowboys this week, bloodying up bid D with overdose injections of Jamal Lewis. As a Lewis owner, I've been waiting for this matchup for a couple weeks, and even as a Dallas fan, I seriously hope he runs right through the defense and makes Parcells wake up and smell the irony. Go with Lewis, sit Boller and steer clear of those receivers, unless Clarence Moore's two scores REALLY made an impression on you. On defense, I think it's safe to play DB Ed Reed at this point, even if you're in a TD-only IDP league, for Pete's (Rozelle's) sake. Also, play the monster Ray Lewis and sometimes DL/LB Adalius Thomas.

Final Score: Ravens 30, Cowboys 17

Denver (-4) at New Orleans, 1:00 p.m.
Okay, okay, I'll get off Jake Plummer's case. At least for one week, since he's facing one of the worst defenses in football.

The Broncos might get two or three touchdown passes from Plummer, although that doesn't mean he won't get sacked four times and throw multiple picks. Start him, Reuben Droughns (the luckiest guy in the NFL) and both Rod Smith and Ashley Lelie. TE Jeb Putzier has also been solid. IDP options include LB Al Wilson, DB Kenoy Kennedy and LB D.J. Williams. If DB John Lynch is healthy, he also might be an okay start.

The Saints have their usual array of offensive starters, although QB Aaron Brooks might have some trouble with the Broncos defense. Play RB Deuce McAllister, WR Joe Horn and TE Boo Williams. On defense, I like LB Orlando Ruff, DB Jay Bellamy and DL Charles Grant, who is bound to get to Plummer after a few games without a sack.

Final Score: Broncos 27, Saints 20

Detroit (+7.5) at Minnesota, 1:00 p.m.
This one might be closer than you'd think, but I still like the Vikings getting another win and racking up some scores.

The Lions will get decent performances from QB Joey Harrington, RB Kevin Jones and WR Roy Williams, who is almost back to 100 percent. Sure, there are a few more guys that might get involved, but you can't take that chance with all the injuries and inconsistency. On defense, start DBs Brock Marion and Dre Bly, LB Earl Holmes and DL James Hall.

The Vikings will see huge days from Daunte Culpepper, RB Onterrio Smith, WRs Marcus Robinson and Nate Burleson and TE Jermaine Wiggins. Again, there are a few other guys (Michael Bennett, Moe Williams, the injured Randy Moss) who may contribute, but you just can't commit to those guys. IDP options include DB Corey Chavous, DB Brian Russell and LB E.J. Henderson, who looks like he's finally 100 percent. If you have LB Chris Claiborne, you may want to wait another week or two until you play him.

Final Score: Vikings 37, Lions 27

Indianapolis (-7.5) at Chicago, 1:00 p.m.
Some questions. First, it doesn't get more clear cut than this one, does it, folks? Or does it? Any additional comments on Peyton Manning's technique last week running up that scoreboard from those that had the misfortune of facing him?

The Colts have been shredding opposing secondaries like Marsh & McLennan bid-rigging documents while owners of Manning, Brandon Stokley and Reggie Wayne reap the benefits. Where was Marvin Harrison last week. Between Stokley and TE Dallas Clark, who had 4 touchdowns between them, there wasn't much to go around. Hey, if you've got ANY of those guys, you must play them. I expect Edgerrin James to also have a big day, even if he doesn't reach the end zone, but hey, what else is new? On defense, go with DL Robert Mathis (while he's smoking hot), weakside LB Cato June and backup DB Bob Sanders, who has filled in admirably.

The Bears might succeed where others have failed in limiting the Colts offensive output to only about three or four touchdowns instead of five or six, but that doesn't mean they still won't struggle to stop this juggernaut. Offensively, the best guys are the running backs, but since Thomas Jones is just getting back and A-Train Anthony Thomas may split carries with him, the value goes down. Combine that with the Colts run and gun offense, and I don't see much chance of the Bears slow-playing this one like a flopped straight. Watch out, because you may see the last worthwhile start of the season (maybe even career) out of David Terrell, who has provided fantasy football owners a new meaning of underachiever. Talk about a sleeper! The only problem is that this guy never woke up. Peep this: Terrell is the Bear's best WR, and he's ranked 64th. WR Bernard Berrian is the most attractive possibility based on his two TDs, but the rookie has only caught seven balls all year. You know what that tells me? Play Bobby Wade. On defense, LB Lance Briggs is the man with Brian Urlacher hurt, and DBs Mike Green and Jerry Azumah should get lots of work. DL Alex Brown is playing like a Pro-Bowler, and should be considered every week.

Final Score: Colts 38, Bears 20

Atlanta (-3) at N.Y. Giants, 4:15 p.m.
I can't wait to see the Giants try to run down Mike Vick. Let's see "Father Time" Tom Coughlin put a clock on him.

The Falcons should run wild against the Giants this week, considering they are starting Eli Manning and he'll turn the ball over four times in Atlanta territory. Play Vick, Warrick Dunn, T.J. Duckett, Peerless Price and Alge Crumpler, and doff your cap to Coughlin, who will be getting a much-needed wake-up call when the Falcons score 40. On defense, play anybody on the Falcons defensive line (Patrick Kerney, Rod Coleman) LB Keith Brooking and DB Bryan Scott.

The Giants got a much-deserved loss last week, although it is not really Kurt Warner's fault. So to all you Eli Manning fans out there - pipe down! He's not going to do any better, especially against this defense. Obviously, you should start RB Tiki Barber, WR Amani Toomer and TE Jeremy Shockey, just don't expect Eli Manning to throw for five TDs like his brother. IDP options include rookie DB Gibril Wilson, LB Kevin Lewis and DL Fred Robbins, who might snag a few tackles.

Final Score: Falcons 40, Giants 23

Washington (+11) at Philadelphia, 4:15 p.m.
The Washington secondary is not as bad as the Dallas secondary, but that just means Donovan McNabb and Terrell Owens will just have to get more creative - a scary proposition.

The Redskins compiled about two passing yards and have only one viable offensive weapon each week - RB Clinton Portis. Don't start Patrick Ramsey just yet, and be careful with WRs Laveranues Coles and Rod Gardner. If anything, you might look to TE Chris Cooley. On defense, I'd imagine that rookie DB Sean Taylor is a solid play, as long as he keeps his nose clean. LBs Antonio Pierce and Marcus Washington started out decent, but have tailed off lately, so look to the rest of the secondary with CB Fred Smoot, CB Shawn Springs and safety Ryan Clark.

The Eagles won't have the field day they did Monday Night, but they should be okay. Start McNabb, Owens, Westbrook and TE L.J. Smith. IDP options for Philly include DL Jevon Kearse, Washington castoff and second-time Eagles LB Jeremiah Trotter, and DBs Lito Sheppard and Sheldon Brown.

Final Score: Eagles 31, Redskins 17

Miami at Seattle (+10) , 4:05 p.m
The Seahawks are just not the team they are capable of being right now. They have had too many mental mistakes that are costing them games. Jackson dropped a key grab in the end zone then another 50 yarder later. I have never seen worse receivers with a case of the drops than these guys. They are just not concentrating and it makes touchdowns into field goals. That is not going to cut it against a great offensive team like the Rams. The fumble by Alexander was huge as well. Alexander is now the leading rusher and will continue smacking folks and will dominate this Dolphins team.

The Dolphins were on a bye and Lord knows they needed it. They have lost their coach, changed their QB's again, and still will play like hell. What they do have to look forward to is the first pick in the draft as they hare headed in that direction. Whether it is Feeley or Fielder it really doesn't matter. This offense is horrible and there really is no reason to start any of these guys. The defense is solid but they really do not cause enough turnovers to be effective in fantasy circles. Maybe Ricky will come back and they can sign Drew Brees. They need both.

Final Score: Hawks 30, Fins 13

San Diego (-3 ) at Oakland, 4:05 p.m
I think this may be the lock of the week. The Chargers are simply the hottest team going not in Pittsburgh. Antonio Gates just might be the best TE in football. He leads the league in TD and yardage for TE's. He has to do it more than one year but right now he is the man. Tomlinson is till hurt with a groin injury so stash away Chatman just in case. He will still be effective and is way to valuable to bench. I think he will lay the smack down on the Raiders as he always has good games against them. Understand they need this game to keep pace with the Broncos for the division lead. Of course I cannot talk about this team without taking about Brees. Great comeback story and should land him some serious jack in the off-season. I think they should keep Brees and trade Rivers. Problem being is that it would too much of a salary cap issue. Play Brees, Tomlinson, MCCardell, and Gates.

Oakland is going nowhere fast. The defense is horrible. They are 3-6 and you can mark them up as done as well. No playoffs for a team that spent major dough in the off-season to bring in big names. Sapp and Washington should be playing better than they are and have been stopping nobody. Gannon has had problems getting comfortable behind center all season and has been largely ineffective. The offense ranks 20th in the league with 314 yards per game. 81 penalties doesn't help either and shows an undisciplined team but that has been a Turner staple for all of his teams. The problem is that Turner us a great coordinator, not a great head coach. They need to start from scratch with personnel. Maybe E. James could help restore something to the offense.

Final Score: Chargers 35, Raiders 21

Green Bay (-3) at Houston, 8:30 p.m
I know the Texans have been playing well but they are not where the Packers are right now. The Packers maybe the hottest team on the NFC side of things. Green Bay is 4th in the league in offense with almost 400 yards per game. Favre is absolutely dialed in like Verizon right now. The defense came close to giving the game away last week to the Vikings. If the Pack falls short that is the first place to look. That secondary is weak as my wife's coffee. Ahman Green got slightly injured in the game but came back and ended up with 145 yards rushing. Favre had four TDS and was basically flawless. He will be too much for the Texans to handle as their defense has given up some big games this year. I think Favre, Green, Driver, Walker will all have big games and big plays.

The Texans ran into a buzz saw named Manning on Sunday. They just were not prepared for that offense. Neither is anybody else. Again they allowed an offense to abuse that secondary and they were not competitive in this game. Giving up five TDs is pitiful and it doesn't get any better this week with Favre coming to town. They gave up two 100 yard receiving days for Stokely and Dallas Clark. Carr didn't help matters with his mistakes. That is another area where they have to improve. The defense is bad enough not to give away opportunities with turnovers. They will suffer in this game and it could be a shootout.

Final Score: Pack 35, Texans 28

New England (-3) at Kansas City, 9:00 p.m.
I thought the Indy-Chicago contest would be pretty high-scoring, but this might surpass it. John Madden and Al Michaels eyes will be spinning around like slot machines. The Patriots face a bad, banged up defense with a great offense. Play QB Tom Brady, RB Corey Dillon, WRs David Givens and David Patten. Even TE Dan Graham, who has three straight weeks with goose eggs, should do SOMETHING, but play somebody else if he's in the top ten. On defense, DB Rodney Harrison should bounce back from an off week, and LBs Tedy Bruschi and Mike Vrabel are good plays. LB Willie McGinest might also be a good play this week, as the KC line might give up some sacks to him and DL Richard Seymour.

The Chiefs face a banged up defense that still ain't bad with an offense that is missing Priest Holmes. Derrick Blaylock may have had his way with the Saints, but the Patriots have much better linebackers and they are guaranteed to step it up in this one. Play Trent Green, Blaylock if you've got no better options, WR Eddie Kennison, WR Johnnie Morton and TE Tony Gonzalez. These guys will score, but the Patriots are still the toughest, scrappiest team in football. IDP options include LB Scott Fujita (I told you to play him last week) DB Greg Wesley (him too) and DB Jerome Woods.

Final Score: Pats 30, Chiefs 24