Last Week's Projections
(10-6) Straight Up - 62.5%
(9-6-1) Against The Spread - 60.0%
For The Season
(116-76) Straight Up - 60.4%
(107-81-4) Against The Spread - 56.9%
New Orleans at Dallas (-6.5),
The Saints played some horrible defense against the Panthers
in route to their 32-21 beating they suffered. They allowed Muhammad
to catch 10 balls for 179 yards. Secondly they let Delhomme throw
for 294 and a score. This may have been the last ride for Haslett.
The rumor is that he will be let go at year's end. Good riddance
I say. The team is just not responding to his bully mentality anymore.
Time to get some new blood in the door. Oh yeah, not to mention
the fact they were run over by Goings as he had 122 yards and a
score. New Orleans is in for a big beating this week against Dallas.
They just can't stop anybody. However they will put up some points.
Go with Brooks, McAllister, and Horn.
Dallas won a barnburner against the Seahawks last week. There
is a new Jones in town and it is not Jerry's long lost cousin.
It is Julius Jones. What a game by this guy. He rushed 30 times
for 198 yards and two scores. He basically put the team on his
back in the 4th and won the game by himself. Stephen Jackson who??
I guess this should put to rest the so-called "experts"
that said the Cowboys should have went for Kevin Jones or Jackson.
They not only got one the more electrifying runners I have seen
this year they received an extra first round pick out of it. The
Cowboys are still in the hunt for a playoff spot but need to cut
down on the turnovers to be a contender. Vinny threw two more
in this game and nearly gave it away. They need better game management
out of him to get in the playoffs. Start Vinny, Jones, Johnson,
Final Score: Boys 30, Saints
N.Y. Giants at Baltimore
(-10), 1:00 p.m.
The Giants just looked awful against the Redskins last week.
How bad was that? This is a bad start for the rookie. He certainly
doesn't look much like his brother. I keep hearing the "experts"
saying he will be ok he does things that make you think he will
be great one day. What is that exactly?? I haven't seen him do anything
besides be Peyton's brother that tells me jack about Eli. Until
he starts making some big throws and winning games I reserve judgment.
Going 12/25 for 113 yards don't do much for me. How do you think
the folks that paid $2000 to watch Coughlin mail in the season feel
about now? Not very good I would expect. Barber did nothing as well.
Not to take anything away from the Skins defense. They are good.
Play nobody from this team this week. The Ravens will kill them
The Ravens laid a surprise egg at home against the Bengals. It
is true that the Bengals are playing better but gosh I thought
that the Ravens could handle that offense enough to pull out a
victory. Having a bad day is one thing but giving up 382 yards
and 3 TDs is something else. They gave up 100-yards receiving
to two receivers for the first time since I can remember. Chalk
this one up as a one-time occurrence kind of like an eclipse.
They will kill Manning and that horrible offensive line. I have
a feeling Manning may not make it through this one. They may sack
this guy 15 times. They should run the ball well in this one so
start Taylor. I wouldn't look for much from the Ravens passing
Final Score: Ravens 23, Giants
Oakland (+7 1/2) at Atlanta,
Oakland lost the track meet in Southern California on Sunday.
Those of you that have had the unfortunate luck to have played
against Collins the last couple of weeks I feel sorry for you.
I mean he had another 343 yards and 3 TDS vs. the Chiefs. The
Raiders had zero for a rushing game however they really didn't
need any. The passing yards were piling up like logs for a campfire.
Ronald Curry had 141 yards and 2 TDS. However it looks as though
it is curtains for him as he is out for the rest of the year.
They will have some trouble against the Falcons defense but I
think they will have enough to stay within a TD. They will have
to try and contain Vick. Which is easier said than done however
there are not many QBS out there playing as well as Collins. Play
Collins and Porter.
Atlanta had a tough day against the Bucs. Folks like myself were
wondering why the Falcons were 2-point dogs in this one. I suppose
we found out. I don't know if we overrated the Falcons or underrated
the Bucs. Either way the Falcons simply don't get it done against
the Bucs. They really have Vick's number, as his stats are remarkably
worse against them. But losing 27-0 was much worse than I could
have imagined. Turnovers were the problem this day. They had three
INTS and 2 lost fumbles. You just can't do that and expect to
stay in it against the Bucs. You have to get a lead and maintain.
They should be fired up for this one but I saw holes in this team
and I think Oakland can hang with them. I think I would only start
Vick and Crumpler this week.
Final Score: Falcons 24, Raiders
Seattle at Minnesota
(-5 1/2), 1:00 p.m.
I was a little disappointed in Minnesota last week. They really
just couldn't get over the hump against the Bears. The three picks
that Culpepper threw didn't help. Two of those were in the red
zone. Moss was back however I heard afterwards his hamstrings
tightened up on him a little and he only ended up with 31 yards
receiving and a lost fumble. Smith had a good game with 79 yards
rushing however I heard that he got injured as well but it won't
keep him out of this one. Seattle's pass defense is horrible and
the Vikings have got to have this one to stay in the division
race and the wild card race is getting tighter. I expect big games
from Culpepper, Moss, Robinson, and Smith.
As we spoke about above Seattle lost a heart breaker at home against
the Boys. They were up 10 points with 1:48 on the clock. Then
came the choke job just like the Rams game. They let the Cowboys
march down the field and score on a questionable touchdown catch
by Key that got the Cowboys within 3. They looked horrible on
a on-side kick and let Whitten just pick the ball out of the air
without so much as a tussle for the ball. Then gave up 20 yards
of Jones's 197 on a touchdown run that sealed their fate. They
will have a terrible time trying to hold down the Viking's offense.
They have got have battered ego's right now. Not good going into
this game with one of the best offenses in the game.
Final Score: Vikings 35, Seahawks
Chicago (+7.5) at Jacksonville,
Chicago Bears QB Chad Hutchinson faces a tougher defense this
week in Jacksonville, a team that desperately needs a win to stay
above .500 and remain in the playoff hunt. This one should stay
pretty close, as all Jaguars games do, but the cream should rise
to the top.
The Bears have some viable fantasy options, although it's nearly
impossible to decide who they will be from week to week. RBs Anthony
Thomas (15-55) and Thomas Jones (15-49) split carries for a decent
combined performance. They should put both their heads on the
same pair of legs (kind of like that bad 1970s movie with Rosey
Grier and Ray Milland wearing a big turtleneck) and have one fantasy
player named Anthony T. Jones. WR David Terrell and TE Desmond
Clark had good games with a touchdown a piece, but that probably
won't occur versus Jacksonville. Play it smart and bench everybody
unless you have no other choice. On defense, LB Brian Urlacher
is back from injury and appropriately omnipresent, so go with
him, DE Alex Brown, and DB Jerry Azumah.
The Jags play tougher than just about every other team in the
league and have a 6-6 record to show for it. Head Coach Jack Del
Rio is going to get burned out if they keep this up for the next
few years, which they might. I'd definitely start Byron Leftwich,
who is overdue for a big day, along with RB Fred Taylor, WR Jimmy
Smith (seriously overdue for a TD) and LBs Mike Peterson and Akin
Ayodele on defense.
Final Score: Jags 23, Bears
Cincinnati (+11) at New
England, 1:00 pm
It seems that Carson Palmer is settling in to his role as franchise
player very nicely, but with the World Champion New England Patriots
on the docket this week, Carson's efficacy will be tested. And
I can't help shaking the idea that he belongs jockeying videos
on TRL and interviewing Jude Law after Conan.
The Bengals are coming off a HUGE win against the Ravens that
was so big you can drop the "H" and pronounce it "YOOGE". Alas,
the Ravens really have no offense, a predicament that does not
plague the defending Super Bowl Champs. Be careful how crazy you
get this week with Bengals starters, since someone is bound to
poop all over the sheets and muddy up your fantasy lineup. Starting
Palmer and Chad Johnson seem to be almost no-brainers at this
point, but I would be most wary about Rudi Johnson and T.J. Houshmandzadeh
(is that right?). Defensively, it looks like LB Brian Simmons
and DB Madieu Williams are the best two, but strong safety Kim
Herring should gets lots of work this weak with the Patriots in
The Patriots have a great approach to football in the 21st century
but can be very frustrating to fantasy owners. The key is playing
a different receiver each week and crossing your fingers when
you post your lineup or call it in. In a game that should be relatively
easy pickings for Tom Brady, I'd play him with confidence and
start Corey Dillon, Deion Branch and David Patten. Until David
Givens is back with at least 6 catches AND 50 yards, I'd leave
him on the bench. And if Daniel Graham is still your tight end,
I'd recommend therapy and a motivational seminar on "Letting Go."
I know, because I'm just now reaching closure on my brief, torrid
Weeks 1-5 fantasy love affair with the guy. On defense, I'd play
it safe with DB Rodney Harrison, LB Tedy Bruschi and DL Richard
Seymour, who should get a sack against the Bengals.
Final Score: Pats 27, Bengals
Cleveland (No Line) at
Buffalo, 1:00 p.m.
This Lake Erie battle should be dominated by the Bills, who have
been rolling over opponents as of late and since Week 4 are 6-2,
with the losses coming versus Baltimore and New England.
The Browns may need to rely on rookie QB Luke McCown with injuries
to both Jeff Garcia and Kelly Holcomb, but don't let that convince
you to use him in your fantasy lineup. Against the Bills at Buffalo
in the freezing cold, the only useful fantasy starters will be
on defense. In a pinch, you could play Antonio Bryant, who seems
to be the number one target of McCown, but I'd stick with DL Kenard
Lang, LB Warrick Holdman and DBs Robert Griffith and Anthony Henry.
The Bills will get good games from Drew Bledsoe, Willis McGahee
and Eric Moulds. WR Lee Evans is another decent option after that
big day in Miami. On defense, play DL Aaron Schobel, LB Takeo
Spikes, LB London Fletcher, DB Nate Clements and DB Lawyer Milloy.
Final Score: Bills 31, Browns
at Houston, 1:00 p.m.
Could Peyton Manning have an easier matchup to break the NFL single
season touchdown pass record? He lit these guys up a few weeks
ago in the first half and then stopped torturing the secondary
after taking a five-touchdown lead.
The Colts should continue their decimation against Houston and
if you haven't noticed by now, the entire offense is worthy of
a fantasy start. Play everybody and see if Peyton decides to break
the record this week instead of just throwing four and waiting
until he's at home versus Baltimore. On defense, the best options
include LB Cato June and DBs Nick Harper, Mike Doss, Idrees Bashir
and Joseph Jefferson.
The Texans will benefit from Indy's swift offense and stinky defense
and see solid performances from David Carr, Andre Johnson and
Domanick Davis. IDP options include LB Jamie Sharper, DB Dunta
Robinson and LB Kailee Wong.
Final Score: Colts 41, Texans
San Francisco (+6.5)
at Arizona, 4:15 p.m.
With Arizona playing as badly as they are, the 49ers have a decent
shot at a win. I really have a hard time seeing any time going
1-15, so if another win is going to happen this year for the Niners,
this is the week. Unfortunately, the Cardinals owned San Fran
the last time around and this time they are at home.
The 49ers should get an okay start from RB Maurice Hicks, who
will start in place of the concussed Kevan Barlow, but don't look
for anything special from QB Ken Dorsey (starting in place of
Tim Rattay) or any of the receivers. TE Eric Johnson is probably
the best play and even he's been quiet as of late. IDP options
include LB Jamie Winborn, DB Tony Parrish and LB Derek Smith.
The Cards face a poor defense with Josh McCown back as the starting
QB and something to prove after a bad loss to Detroit. Go with
McCown, RB Larry Croom, WR Anquan Boldin and WR Larry Fitzgerald.
On defense, the Cardinals should get good games from DL Bert Berry,
LB Ron McKinnon and DB Adrian Wilson.
Final Score: Cards 20, 49ers
Louis (+6.5) at Carolina, 4:15 p.m.
Both teams are fighting for their playoff lives and are missing
key components of the offense. The Panthers have been missing
their stars all season long but have triumphed over adversity
to reach 5-7, while the Rams have underachieved their way to 6-6.
This one will see some scoring, and Carolina should roll.
The Rams are without QB Marc Bulger and will start backup Crystal
Chandelier (AKA Chris Chandler). The perennial concussion king
is a risky play at Carolina, where the defense has steadily improved
and has been getting some rest since the offense found their groove.
RB Stephen Jackson is questionable and RB Marshall Faulk should
return this week from a knee injury. Faulk should have an okay
game, and at least contribute with some receiving yardage even
if he gets stopped on the ground. WRs Torry Holt and Isaac Bruce
aren't quite as solid with Chandler at the helm. IDP options include
DL Leonard Little, LB Tommy Polley and DB Adam Archuleta.
The Panthers have gotten some good games out of RB Nick Goings,
and will probably see more excellent performances from QB Jake
Delhomme and WRs Muhsin Muhammed (blowing up lately) and Keary
Colbert. As always on defense, DL Julius Peppers, LB Will Witherspoon
and DB Mike Minter are the best plays.
Final Score: Panthers 31, Rams
Bay (+5.5) at San Diego, 4:15 p.m.
An important game for both teams, this will be an interesting
matchup of a steadily improving defense in Tampa Bay versus an
offense in San Diego that has also gained a lot of momentum coming
off a big win against Denver.
The Bucs looked magnificent shutting out the Falcons - who are
a tough team to read - and making Mike Vick look human. Since
San Diego's not great on defense, the Bucs should get good performances
from QB Brian Griese, RB Michael Pittman, WR Joey Galloway and
TE Ken Dilger. IDP options include LB Derrick Brooks, DL Simeon
Rice and DB Ronde Barber.
The Chargers have three must starts every week, including QB Drew
Brees, RB LaDainian Tomlinson and TE Antonio Gates, but I wouldn't
start Eric Parker on Sunday. These guys might have some trouble
cracking the TB defense, but they should get some scores late
in the game. On defense, the best will be LB Donnie Edwards, DB
Jerry Wilson and DB Terrence Kiel.
Final Score: Chargers 24, Bucs
Miami (+10.5) at Denver,
I tried to tell everyone all year about Plummer and the fact that
the Broncos have been overrated all year. They lost again to the
Chargers mainly because of mental mistakes at the QB position.
They really had a good chance in this one. The defense did an
excellent job against Gates. The Broncs have been one of the only
teams to hold him in check. They also did a marvelous job on Brees
as he was held to only 106 yards passing and no TDS. However the
Tomlinson train came through with 113 yards and 2 TDS. The big
story though was the play of Plummer who again choked in a big
game. I know we have been on his ass all year but as a Denver
fan you have to agree he just doesn't have the make-up to win
big. He threw for 278 yards but had no TDS and 4 INTS. The Chargers
also did a number on Droughns and made him their next victim holding
him to only 38 yards rushing. The Dolphins D will do the same
and will surprise some folks this week by keeping it close. Play
Lelie and Smith. No Droughns this week.
The Dolphins played better again this week. You have to give it
them they have not mailed it in quite yet. They stayed pretty
close to the Bills all day. They were up 21-24 at halftime. Feeley
in general moved the ball but his 5 INTS really hurt. He had 303
yards and 3 touchdowns. He completed passes to 10 different receivers.
Travis Minor had a decent day at 82 yards and 1 TD. I think they
have found a little momentum with the offense and the defense
is still solid. Other than a couple of big plays to Lee Evans
the defense kept them in it. I think you will see them hand in
there against the Broncos and might be in it until the end. The
will certainly keep it within the 10.5. I wouldn't start anyone
but McMichael in this one however.
Final Score: Broncos 23, Dolphins
Jets at Pittsburgh (-5 1/2), 4:05 p.m
The Jets shook off a slow start to beat the Texans 29-7. They
were down 6-7 at halftime at home but started to run the ball
effectively as Curtis Martin ended up with 134 yards rushing and
a TD. Pennington didn't have a stellar day however he didn't need
to as the running game and defense really controlled things. They
forced Carr into two turnovers and they just didn't allow that
high-powered offense to get going. They held D. Davis to 52 yards.
I think they will have a chance in this one but will have to contain
the running game. They have to make Big Ben beat them. Crowd the
line of scrimmage and make him throw deep. I don't think anyone
has tried that yet against him. It is easier to win games when
you are handing it off 40 times and having success. Play Martin.
The Steelers just didn't look quite right on Sunday. I watched
a little of this game and saw the power running game just wasn't
there without Bettis. If the Steelers were smart they would go
with the horse that has been running the last couple of weeks
and try and pound the ball with Bettis. I doubt that will happen
as Cowher is a creature of habit and is too stubborn to change.
No way Bettis sees significant playing time on Sunday. Staley's
17 carries for 51 yards is not going to get it done against the
Jets. They will need more. This game hinges on the running game
for the Steelers and the defense of the Jets. I say the Steelers
put it away at home. Play Staley and Ward.
Final Score: Steelers 24, Jets
Detroit (+10) at Green
Bay, 4:15 p.m
Just when you think the Packers are looking ready for prime time
they put out a stinker like the one on Sunday. It just shows there
are the Eagles in the NFC and then everyone else. The Packers
said they were ready for them but it was obvious they weren't.
Favre had nothing to give this week as he only had 131 yards and
2 picks. His consecutive game streak with a TD ended as well.
Green was a non-factor with only 37 yards rushing. I think they
will play better and win this week but 10 points is too much for
me. They will still have a hangover effect from this beating it
has to be discouraging. I would start Favre, Green, and Walker
but the Lions defense is known for causing turnovers. We will
Detroit was busy knocking Cardinal QBS out of the game Sunday
as Arizona' latest in Navarre was knocked out with a fracture
thumb. I suppose they may be a reason for his 168 yards and 4
picks. Kevin Jones is emerging as big star as he had his first
big game with 196 yards and a TD. That is what the Lions were
looking for when they drafted this guy. Harrington has got to
make some plays if the Lions are going to have a chance in this
one. I don't think they have a big window here. They just need
to play smart football and let that defense cause some turnovers.
As evidence on Sunday and just about every Sunday the Packers
defense will let you score in bunches you just want to do your
best to keep #4 off the field. Here is saying the Lions can do
it enough to stay within the 10.
Final Score: Packers 30, Lions
at Washington, 8:30 p.m.
Washington will get a nasty wake-up call when Philly comes to
The Eagles are 11-1 and are nearly unbeatable. Their 47-17 drubbing
of the Packers showcased the finest of their fantasy performers
- QB Donovan McNabb, RB Brian Westbrook and WR Terrell Owens -
players that should see similar stats against the Redskins. Westbrook
will get more carries this week, and the Eagles should win even
bigger. IDP options include LB Jeremiah Trotter and DBs Brian
Dawkins, Lito Sheppard and Sheldon Brown.
The Redskins certainly have their hands full, and will have a
hard time getting started versus the Eagles. Despite his three
TD passes versus the Giants, I would stay away from QB Patrick
Ramsey and his receivers. TE Chris Cooley and WR Rod Gardner are
probably the best of the corps, and RB Clinton Portis should also
catch some passes and compile about 50 yards on the ground. He
may even score, but it will be tough. On defense, I'd start LB
Antonio Pierce, LB Marcus Washington and DB Sean Taylor.
Final Score: Eagles 38, Redskins
Kansas City at Tennessee,
The Chiefs hung around and won the scoring showdown with the Raiders.
At early press time I have no idea if Holmes will be playing in
this one. I doubt it. It looks more like it will be week 15. Larry
Johnson had a great game finally and posted 118 yards and a TD.
He may be the man this week against the Titans. I think they want
to see what this kid has and make a decision at the end of the
year. He also had 56 yards receiving and another TD. Great game
by Green as well as he put up 340 yards and 3 TDS. The problem
still with this team is defense. They just plain suck and are
not getting any better. Collins lit them up for 343 and Volek
will probably do the same. Here is saying that the Chiefs will
be able to outscore them again. Play Green, Johnson, Kennison,
Well another victim to the Manning express on Sunday. The Titans
got to see up close and personal what that looks like. They allowed
a ridiculous 425 yards passing and 3 TDS to Manning. They allowed
James to rush for 105 yards and another 2 TDS. That is just horrible
and really overshadowed a pretty good performance by Volek who
threw for 269 yards and 2 TDS. He has to cut down on the turnovers.
He had two picks in this game. I just don't think they have enough
to hang with the Chiefs. Expect another high scoring affair in
this one. Play Volek, Brown, Bennett, and Mason.s
Final Score: Chiefs 35, Titans