Quick Hits (Details in individual
Week 11 Injury Report (available
- No more byes
- AZ DE Berry officially done for season, Smith gets shot
- SF S Parrish breaks ankle and leg, on IR
- NE CBs Starks and Gay to IR is latest mess for secondary
- AZ LB Dansby could miss time with groin injury
- CAR LB Morgan "aggravates" shoulder
- WAS FS Taylor misses game with ankle injury
- CHI CB Vasher has record-breaking missed FG return
- MIN CB Smoot out with broken collarbone
- SEA LB Sharper out with staph infection
- Sack string snapped for IND DE Mathis, still leads NFL
- Forcing four consecutive turnovers locks up win for CAR
- DET D riddled with injuries
- NYG DT Joseph dislocated elbow
With DE Bert Berry out with a torn left pectoral muscle, Antonio
Smith got the start at RDE opposite Chike Okeafor. The 2004 fifth
round pick out of Oklahoma State spent most of 2004 on the practice
squad and was allocated to Europe over the summer, where earned
All-NFLE honors, starting 9 of 10 games for the Hamburg Sea Devils
and posting 6 sacks. Smith had 4 solo tackles in his first career
start. I assumed Antonio Cochran would have gotten more of a look,
as well, but Smith looks to have some value in deep leagues with
Berry now done for the season after being put on the IR. Cochran
will get no chance, as he was released this week. The team then
signed another Seattle cast-off, Anton Palepoi, for depth at DE.
Okeafor had just 2 tackles (1 solo) and is playing with an injured
wrist and sore ribs that kept him out of some practice last week.
Already playing through a sore knee, OLB Karlos Dansby left in
the first half with a groin injury. Rookie Darryl Blackstock saw
some more work in his place and had an assist, as well as a solo
tackle on special teams. Dansby is likely to miss this week, and
could miss up to three. Blackstock would seem to be the beneficiary
of more time, but HC Denny Green seems reluctant to give him a
chance. LB Isaac Keys was promoted from the practice squad. MLB
James Darling had the only sack of the game among his 10 tackles
(7 solo). SS Adrian Wilson led the team with 14 tackles (10 solo)
and broke up 2 passes.
OLB Demorrio Williams continued his breakout season, leading the
team with 13 solo tackles, as well as a pick and forced fumble.
Rookie Michael Boley remained the starter opposite, with Brooking
in the middle. Boley had 9 tackles (5 solo) and Brooking had 5
DE Brady Smith missed another game with a broken toe and Chauncey
Davis was limited with a knee injury, so rookie Jonathan Babineaux
got another start at RDE and shared a sack with LDE Patrick Kerney.
After a career-high 13 sacks last year, Kerney has just 4 this
FS Bryan Scott seemed OK after a neck injury the previous week.
He had 6 solo tackles and broke up 2 passes.
Without MLB Ray Lewis (hamstring) and SS Ed Reed (ankle) in the
lineup, the Ravens defense forced no turnovers and allowed Jacksonville
RB Greg Jones, replacing an injured Fred Taylor, to get his first
100-yard game. Reed is out of his walking boot and optimistic
he can play this week, but was expected to miss another game and
Lewis at least two more. Tommy Polley continued to be an effective
fantasy replacement for Lewis. He led the team with 8 tackles
(6 solo) and had a pass defensed. Chad Williams had 4 solo tackles
in place of Reed at SS.
LB Bart Scott, who also has seen more time with Lewis out, shared
a sack with DE Jarret Johnson. Johnson returned to a back-up role
as Anthony Weaver returned to the starting lineup after missing
several weeks with a toe injury. The half-sack was among 5 tackles
(3 solo) for Johnson, who continued to see significant time with
DE Terrell Suggs limited by a thigh injury. Suggs had one solo
tackle and Weaver had four.
DB Dale Carter was inactive after pulling a hamstring in Week
The run defense was weakened by the absence of DT Sam Adams, who
was inactive with a knee injury, and it showed as KC RB ran for
132 yards at a clip of 4.9 per carry. However, timely sacks and
turnovers prevented it from being converted into more than just
three points. Overall, the defense forced four turnovers and sacked
KC QB Trent Green six times to allow the fewest points since their
2003 season-opening shut out of the Patriots. Tim Anderson replaced
Adams, who is expected back this week. MLB London Fletcher led
the way, with a season-high 20 tackles (13 solo), including a
sack and forced fumble. Fletcher looked like he got healthy over
the bye after a disappointing first half for one of the consistently
elite fantasy LBs. His 20 tackles were more than he had in the
previous four games combined. OLB Angelo Crowell continues to
be an effective fantasy replacement for Takeo Spikes. Crowell
had the best game of his career with 16 tackles (10 solo, including
one on special teams), a sack and 2 passes defensed, including
one for a pick. SS Lawyer Milloy rounded out the trio with double-digit
tackles, as he posted 12 (9 solo). Streaky DE Aaron Schobel didn’t
get cold over the bye, as he had 2 sacks, giving him back-to-back
games with multiple sacks and at least one in three straight.
One downside to the big day was the loss of FS Troy Vincent to
a shoulder injury in the second quarter. Rashad Baker replaced
him and broke up 2 passes, including picking one, and had 2 solo
tackles. CB Terrence McGee had a pick too, but aggravated a hamstring
injury during the game and is questionable this week.
Several tremendous individual efforts on defense prevented what
could have been a major upset to the Jets and triggered a 20-point
outburst in the fourth quarter to put the game away. Up by only
7 late in the third quarter, the Panthers defense forced turnovers
on four consecutive drives. CB Ken Lucas got it started with his
second pick of the day which resulted in a long TD drive for the
Panther offense. CB Ricky Manning forced a fumble on the ensuing
kickoff that was recovered by CB Chris Gamble. That led to a Carolina
FG four plays later. On the next play from scrimmage for the Jets,
Gamble had an interception that led to another FG. On the next
drive, DE Julius Peppers tried to get in on the act, forcing a
fumble on a sack, but Bollinger recovered it and Peppers covered
him, giving Peppers two tackles on one play. Peppers also shared
a sack with DE Mike Rucker earlier in the game. Two plays later,
Bollinger threw his fourth pick of the day and OLB Will Witherspoon
capped the incredible stretch by returning it for a TD. Witherspoon,
who was a fantasy disappointment at the beginning of the year,
has now put together three consecutive productive games, in which
he has 18 tackles (16 solo), 3 passes defended, a pick, a TD,
and a sack.
MLB Dan Morgan wasn’t in on the end game fun, but he led
the team with 7 solo tackles and forced a fumble that SS Marlon
McCree recovered, the first of the New York’s six turnovers.
He aggravated his shoulder injury in the second quarter and left
the game, but returned the next series. He dislocated the shoulder
during their Week 6 game and has been playing with a harness to
support the shoulder. He said it was the first time he hit the
shoulder square since, and it was just an “initial sting,
and then it went away”. Morgan owners beware.
CB Nathan Vasher was on his way to establishing himself as one
of the top young playmakers at CB last season when a 71-yard INT
return for a TD sealed a win over the 49ers. On Sunday, a disappointing
first half for the Bears, down 3-0 while hampered by turnovers,
had three seconds left when SF K Joe Nedney lined up for a 52-yard
attempt. As the teams got set at the line of scrimmage, Vasher
sprinted back toward the end zone. The kick came up short as time
ran out, but Vasher caught it on a fly over his shoulder in the
end zone and started up the left sideline. About 10 yards out,
he barely kept his balance with his hand on the ground after a
spin move, the started to cut across the field with a convoy of
blockers. Without any “speed” players on the field
goal team for San Fran, Vasher began to separate from the pack.
A helpless Nedney backpedaled and was run over as the last attempt
to stop him, and 108 official yards later, the Bears took a 7-3
lead and momentum heading into halftime, and Vasher had the longest
play in NFL history. Despite the improbability of it, lost in
record-breaking return was the logic of attempting a 52-yard FG
in winds that were gusting up to nearly 50 mph in the first place.
If you saw the highlights of the game, an earlier FG attempt by
the Bears on the same end of the field took a 90-degree hook during
flight that appeared to void the laws of physics and almost ended
up in Lake Michigan. Hopefully your league counts return stats
if you started Vasher, because he only had an assist for the game
for his regular defensive stats. Vasher could see his return duties
expand, as WR Bobby Wade had a putrid day as the punt returner,
fumbling two and muffing one, almost single-handedly costing the
Bears the game. Wade no friends Sunday on a defense that kept
finding itself back on the field after a nice stand, with their
backs up against the end zone. Vasher replaced Wade on the last
49er punt of the day, wisely choosing to not attempt to handle
The wind made a passing game challenging for anyone, and with
a third-string QB leading it, the Bears defense only allowed one
pass completion in 13 attempts. SS Mike Brown picked a ball tipped
by reserve DT Tank Johnson and reserve S Mike Green added to the
misery of SF QB Cody Pickett’s day even worse when he forced
a fumble after a nice 12-yard scramble by Pickett on a second-and-ten.
However, the 49ers managed to recover, despite a collection of
orange-clad Bears around the ball.
Rookie FS Chris Harris continued to be productive, leading the
team in tackles with 7 (6 solo) and breaking up a pass.
1st round pick David Pollack, who was limited in Week Nine and
missed Week 8 with a knee injury, was practicing during the bye
and expected to be fully ready this week.
Former starting LB Nate Webster continues to workout, but remains
on the PUP recovering from a knee injury. The team will have to
make a move with him by 11/28.
With no sacks or turnovers, CB Leigh Bodden had one of the few
defensive fantasy highlights, returning a blocked FG 59 yards
for a TD. Bodden has had a knack for a few big plays this year
and is worth a look in deep leagues that require corners, as he
is locked into a starting spot with Gary Baxter on the IR. Opposite
him, CB depth took another hit as Daylon McCutcheon was carted
off the field in the first quarter after inadvertently getting
kicked by PIT WR Hines Ward during a collision. Ray Mickens replaced
ILB Ben Taylor led the team with 12 tackles (5 solo).
The last few years, SS Roy Williams has not matched the fantasy
production and big plays he turned in during his incredible rookie
season. On Monday night, after the Eagles were in control most
of game, the Dallas offense got them within 6 with three minutes
left. With three timeouts, the HC Bill Parcells opted for a standard
kickoff and hoped for a defensive stand. On the second play from
scrimmage, Williams baited QB Donovan McNabb by showing blitz
before the snap, then breaking to the flat. McNabb looked like
he was expecting a curl from WR Reggie Brown as he threw the ball,
but Brown kept running downfield. Williams stepped in front of
it and took it 46 yards for the game-winning TD, his first since
his rookie season. Williams also broke up 2 other passes and had
4 tackles (3 solo). ILB Bradie James led the team with 12 solo
tackles, including a sack, and defended 2 passes. He also had
the key block, steamrolling McNabb, on the TD return by Williams.
ILB Dat Nguyen continued to have his snaps limited and share
time with Scott Shanle, who was the starter. Shanle had 3 solo
tackles and Nguyen had 2.
CB Anthony Henry will inactive with a lingering sore groin. Aaron
Glenn started in his place and broke up 4 passes, as well as had
5 tackles (4 solo).
CB Champ Bailey returned healthier from the bye to lead the team
in tackles with 10 (8 solo) and grab a pick. He also did a good
job spending most of his time on Randy Moss. Opposite him, rookie
Darrent Williams continued his exceptional rookie season. He returned
a punt 52 yards to set up the Broncos first TD and sealed the
victory with an 80-yard interception return for a TD ending a
chance for the Raiders to get back in the game in the fourth quarter.
Williams also had 4 tackles (3 solo).
The Brown-cos DLine had some decent fantasy productivity for
the first time in a while. LDE Courtney Brown and reserve DE Ebenezer
Ekuban each had a sack, the second of the season for each. It’s
been six games since Brown had one and five for Ekuban. RDE Trevor
Pryce also had his second sack of the season, but his have been
in back-to-back games.
Already crippled by injuries, the Lions defense took some more
hits on Sunday. All three starting LBs were hurt. MLB Earl Holmes
left with a knee injury and OLB Boss Bailey with knee and ankle
injuries, while James Davis injured his hand. Holmes was already
playing with a sore wrist from a sprained a couple of weeks ago
and now he has a grade two MCL sprain and is likely to miss this
week. Bailey is doubtful right now and needs further tests on
his ankle. Wali Rainer replaced Holmes and Donte’ Curry
saw more work in Bailey’s place. The LB corps was already
thin with Teddy Lehman out for the second straight game with a
foot injury and Nate Wayne, recently signed for depth, inactive.
At CB, the team has already been without their top two players,
with Fernando Bryant down for the year and Dre’ Bly inactive
with a dislocated wrist. Andre Goodman joined them in missing
the game due to a hamstring injury suffered in Week Nine. Goodman
should be back next week, while Bly is hoping to return for the
Thanksgiving game. With Goodman inactive, Kevin Smith got the
start opposite R.W. McQuarters. Smith had 5 tackles (4 solo) and
McQuarters had 2 tackles (1 solo) and a pass defensed. Rookie
Stanley Wilson was the nickel CB, and he also missed some time
during the game with shoulder problems. SS Kenoy Kennedy led the
team in tackles with 9 (7 solo) and joined the wounded with a
rotator cuff strain during the game.
There was some positive injury news, as DT Shaun Rogers returned
after missing a few games with a MCL sprain. He was still limited
and rookie Shaun Cody continued to see significant work, but strained
his shoulder during the game, as. DT Dan Wilkinson had his first
career safety when he wrapped up Arizona RB Obafemi Ayanbadejo
in the first quarter. DE Cory Redding forced a fumble by Arizona
RB Marcel Shipp on his only tackle, which was recovered by reserve
DE Kalimba Edwards. Redding also batted down 2 passes.
Paris Lenon got the start at SLB, but Na’il Diggs returned
from a MCL tear and saw the bulk of work. Diggs finished with
4 solo tackles. MLB Nick Barnett led the team with 7 solo tackles,
including a sack, and 2 fumble recoveries. SLB Robert Thomas left
the game due to a thigh injury, but is expected back this week.
After GB scored on their opening drive, DE Kabeer Gbaja-Biamila
hit ATL RB Warrick Dunn from behind on a screen pass, forcing
a fumble as the ball flew into the hands of SS Mark Roman. The
Packers quickly added another TD and got out to a 14-0 lead quickly
that kept the Falcons could never quite recover from. KGB had
another solo tackle in the game, while Roman also had 6 tackles
(5 solo) and broke up a pass.
CB Ahmad Carroll remains frustratingly inconsistent. He angered
the coaching staff with taunting the Atlanta bench at one point
during the game, but more so with the TD he gave up and 43-yard
pass interference penalty he drew. With just 4 solo tackles, his
fantasy owners weren’t too thrilled with him either.
OLB Antwan Peek had the only sack of the day, giving him three
on the season and tying NT Set Payne for the team-lead. CB Dunta
Robinson led the team with 9 solo tackles. ILB DaShon Polk also
had 9 tackles (8 solo) and a pass defended.
DE Gary Walker, who was in his third game back after missing
almost a month due to a shoulder injury, was dinged up and had
to limp off the field, at one point. However, he returned and
finished the game, posting 4 tackles (3 solo).
As expected, CB Demarcus Faggins was inactive with a hamstring
injury from Week Nine and Phillip Buchanon, the former Oakland
1st round pick Faggins replaced as a starter earlier this year,
was back with the first team. Buchanon had 4 solo tackles. The
depleted secondary took another hit when top reserve S Jason Simmons
left with a right hamstring injury and did not return.
Pass rush specialist DE Robert Mathis didn’t have a sack
for the first time this season, snapping his eight-game streak.
He still leads the NFL with nine. DE Dwight Freeney, playing on
a gimpy foot, had his seventh sack of the season through nine
games. Freeney remains two behind Mathis, but don’t be surprised
by a big second half for Freeney. On his way to a franchise-record
16 sacks in 2004, he had just 6 through nine games. Freeney also
had another solo tackle and a pass defensed.
WLB Cato June led the team with 14 tackles (9 solo) and appeared
unaffected by a sore knee added in Week Nine to his existing health
issue with a sports hernia.
SS Michael Doss was active, but did not play, as he continues
to battle a right shoulder problem and seek more medical opinions
on treating the lingering pain and movement limitations. Joseph
Jefferson started in his place. FS Bo Sanders left after the first
half with a knee injury. HC Tony Dungy said it was precautionary
and he was walking Monday. An MRI revealed no significant damage,
but he still hasn’t been cleared to play this week. Gerome
Sapp replaced him. Special teams’ mistakes by key secondary
players were costly for the Colts. CB Jason David, who has also
struggled in coverage lately, took a punt off his helmet and reserve
rookie CB Marlin Jackson couldn’t hang on to a ball he attempted
to cover on a punt he incorrectly thought had hit a teammate.
Both were recovered by Houston, and Jackson’s led to a TD.
MLB Mike Peterson returned his third INT of the season 26 yards
for a TD that put the Jaguars over 30 points for the first time
since 2001. Peterson also broke up another pass and led the team
with 10 solo tackles, including his third sack of the season.
A tremendous all-around game for one of the top fantasy LBs. Pass
rush specialist DE Bobby McCray had his first multi-sack game
of his career, getting a solo on Baltimore’s first drive
and sharing one with nickel CB Terry Cousin later in the first
half. Cousin also had two picks in the game, giving him a new
career-high with three for the season. Reserve DT Rob Meier had
a sack, giving him one in back-to-back games and setting a new
career-high with three.
With FS Deon Grant (ankle) and SS Deke Cooper (shoulder) playing
through injuries, rookie Gerald Sensabaugh saw some more action
and had 2 solo tackles, as many as Grant and Cooper combined for.
Reserve LB Jamie Winborn had his first tackle on defense as a
Jaguar. He also had one on special teams.
A frustrating day came to head when DE Eric Hicks and DT Lionel
Dalton were ejected for a fight with BUF OL Chris Villarial near
the end of the game. One of the few big defensive plays for the
day came on the play after the disqualifications, when SS Sammy
Knight forced BUF RB Willis McGahee to fumble and DE Jimmy Wilkerson,
who replaced Hicks, recovered it. Knight also led the team with
11 tackles (4 solo). Hicks had to leave the game earlier due to
a knee injury, but returned. The other two highlights were DE
Jared Allen’s two sacks. He knocked BUF QB Kelly Holocomb
out of the game and forced a fumble that was recovered by reserve
DE Carlos Hall on one of them. However, even that play ended up
backfiring, because BUF QB J.P. Losman would take over for Holcomb
on the next drive and lead the team to their first, and decisive,
TD. Hall also suffered a thigh bruise during the game, but returned
CB Patrick Surtain returned after missing Week Nine with a sprained
left knee. CB Eric Warfield played through a hip pointer as was
victimized on both TD passes by Losman. CB Dexter McCleon suited
up, but did not play, as he battled a lingering groin injury.
LB Shawn Barber, who has missed all of the season so far recovering
from a torn ACL, is expected to be activated off the PUP this
week. He is unlikely to step back into a starting role, but Kendrell
Bell has been a disappointment, so that may be where he sees some
MLB Zach Thomas led the team with 12 tackles (7 solo). DEs Jason
Taylor and Kevin Carter each had a sack. The two are tied for
the team-lead with 5, and is the first time this season Taylor,
who is playing through a torn plantar fascia in his foot, has
had sacks in back-to-back games.
DE Jason Taylor had his first sack in almost a month, since suffering
a torn plantar fascia, and it almost propelled the Dolphins to
victory. He caught Atlanta QB Mike Vick deep in Falcon territory
on third down halfway through the fourth quarter, forcing a punt
that gave Miami the ball at Atlanta’s 42-yard line. The
offense drove to the 8-yard line, but ended with the only turnover
of the day, spoiling the comeback attempt. Taylor also posted
5 tackles (3 solo). DT Vonnie Holliday had a toe injury aggravated
when it was stepped on during the game.
CB Will Poole, who has been on the PUP recovering from a torn
ACL since the start of the season, will not be activated and be
moved to the IR, so his season is officially over.
If you started the Vikings in a league with team defense, you
were the beneficiary four picks and of them being the first team
in NFL history to score on punt, kickoff, and interception returns
in the same game. For IDP leagues, you were the beneficiary if
you started FS Darren Sharper. In addition to the 92-yard INT
return for a TD, Sharper also had two other picks among his 5
passes defended, as well as 4 tackles (3 solo). He now leads NFC
in interceptions with five. CB Brian Williams, starting in place
of Fred Smoot who was inactive with a small fracture in his collarbone
from a shoulder injury he aggravated in Week Nine, returned a
pick 26 yards. Along with the 123 yards in returns on Sharper’s
three picks, the two combined for more yardage than the Minnesota
offense. Smoot is expected to miss at least three weeks. Williams
should remain the starter. Depth at CB is thin after the team
released Ken Irvin last week.
OLB Keith Newman is enjoying the Vikings return to a base 4-3.
After his most productive fantasy game of the season in Week Nine,
his encore was leading the team with 11 tackles (8 solo), breaking
up a pass, and sharing a sack with DT Pat Williams. On a bit of
a hot streak and with some stability finally in the lineup, Newman
is looking like a viable starting candidate in deep leagues.
Erasmus James started for the second consecutive game at RDE
opposite Darrion Scott. James had 4 tackles (2 solo) and batted
away a pass. Scott had a sack among 4 tackles (3 solo). It didn’t
show in the box score, but DT Kevin Williams had a nice game.
He was collapsing the pocket for others to make plays and broke
up 3 passes, but had just 1 solo tackle.
Despite injuries already decimating the secondary, HC Bill Belichick
didn’t hesitate to put CB Duane Starks on the IR, although
he recently appeared to be past a variety of nagging injuries
since the preseason. There were rumors that Starks would be released
after getting benched in the second half of their Week Nine loss
to Indianapolis, so we could see the NFLPA get involved if there
are any questions of motivation for the IR move, other than injury.
Randall Gay was active and played, although he was unexpected
to and ended up worsening his high ankle sprain. This left rookie
Ellis Hobbs, who missed some practice himself last week with a
thigh contusion, in the starting lineup opposite Asante Samuel.
In his first career start, Hobbs lost WR Chris Chambers for a
TD on a third-and-goal from the three and fumbled an INT, but
he recovered it himself, and otherwise played well. He finished
with 7 tackles (5 solo), broke up 4 passes (including the one
he picked) and recovered 2 fumbles (including his own on the INT
return). The other fumble recovery was forced by OLB Rosey Colvin,
who also had 7 tackles (4 solo).
Michael Stone started at SS and led the team with 8 tackles (6
solo, including 1 on special teams). It was the four-year vet’s
first career start. Rookie James Sanders, who may also get a shot
at the job, but has been limited by an ankle injury, as well,
saw some time in the secondary and had a solo tackle. The secondary
situation could get worse, as FS Eugene Wilson went down near
the end of the game and had to leave with an undisclosed injury.
The CB situation declined further when Gay was placed on the
IR this week, as well. To fill the latest hole, the team signed
Artrell Hawkins, a former starter for the Bengals who couldn’t
stick with Washington or Carolina. They still need more depth,
even with Hawkins aboard. Troy Brown saw his first defensive action
of the season on Sunday as a slot corner in a few long-yardage
situations. His value seems to get the immediate boost. With all
the injuries and Belichick’s lack of apprehension of plugging
anyone on the roster in, there could still be another DB on the
way who will be productive before the season is over. CB Santonio
Thomas and S Ray Ventrone are two options from the practice squad.
Former Cowboy Pete Hunter worked out for the team on Saturday,
but did not sign immediately. There are rumors DEN CB Lenny Walls,
a Boston College alum, may be released by Denver soon.
DE Richard Seymour was active for the first time in over a month
due to a knee injury and back in the starting lineup. He had 2
tackles (1 solo). Jarvis Green returned to a reserve role.
It didn’t show up in his stats, but ILB Tedy Bruschi is
slowly returning to making big plays. One of his 2 passes defensed
was a diving fingertip deflection of a likely TD pass in the second
quarter on third-and-thirteen. The Dolphins missed a FG on the
next play. He also had 4 tackles (1 solo).
New Orleans/Baton Rogue/San Antonio
As if the Saints didn’t have enough problems, another stupid
one happened to the defense. CB Fahkir Brown was arrested for
a DUI last week during the bye. It seems likely he’ll at
least be benched for the start of this week’s game.
MLB Courtney Watson did not practice over the bye as he nurses
a sprained MCL and is questionable for this week. Ronald McKinnon
will continue to start, probably even once Watson is healthy.
McKinnon replaced Watson after he was benched in Week Eight for
a DUI arrest. McKinnon remained the starter in Week Nine, as well,
when Watson hurt his knee as a back up.
New York Giants
You hold an offense to no TDs and just 12 yards rushing on 21
carries, and the defense not only did a good job, but you think
the team did enough to win. However, turnovers and special teams
ruined a very good defensive effort. MLB Antonio Pierce and DE
Osi Umenyiora led the way. Pierce led the team with 10 tackles
(7 solo) and a fumble recovery. Umenyiora had his third multi-sack
game of the year, getting 2 among his 9 tackles (4 solo). He has
5 sacks in his last three games and moved into a tie with SF DE
Bryant Young for the NFC lead with eight. DE Michael Strahan and
SS Gibril Wilson each had a sack. Wilson now has sacks in back-to-back
games and remains hot after a slow fantasy start in the first
half of the season.
The defense remains hit hard by injuries. OLB Carlos Emmons missed
another game with a torn pectoral muscle. OLB Nick Greisen played
through some sore ribs. Reserve S Shaun Williams was inactive
with a hamstring pull. Reserve DE Justin Tuck was out with a sprained
ankle. DT William Joseph left the game near the end with a dislocated
elbow and is expected to miss a month. And CB Will Peterson occupied
his normal weekly slot on the inactive list due to his back fractures.
New York Jets
Rookie Justin Miller got his first career start at CB as David
Barrett was inactive due to problems with his eye after getting
poked in it during Week Nine. Miller had a rough day, getting
beaten for a TD and losing a fumble on a kickoff. Opposite him,
CB Ty Law showed he was still a shutdown corner, holding the Steve
Smith to just 34 yards and no scores on 3 catches. Smith had been
one of the hottest players in the league, with over 100 yards
and at least 1 TD in his last four games. Law had 5 tackles (3
DE John Abraham seemed to have tied the game at 10 in the third
quarter when he appeared to sack CAR QB Jake Delhomme and forced
a fumble that was returned for a TD by reserve S Rashad Washington.
However, the play was challenged and reversed, ruled an incomplete
pass. Abraham finished with 6 tackles (3 solo). OLB Victor Hobson
led the team with 7 tackles (6 solo).
After falling behind early, both sides of the ball failed to capitalize
on opportunities to swing the momentum in the fourth quarter.
After ending the shutout with a TD early in the quarter, 1st round
pick CB Fabian Washington recovered a Rod Smith fumble on the
next play from scrimmage in Bronco territory. After driving to
the 11-yard line, they had to settle for a FG, cutting the lead
to 13. On third down at Denver’s 18-yard line on the next
possession, LB Kirk Morrison stepped in front of a slant and simply
dropped a sure pick that possibly could have been returned for
a TD. Denver punted and the Raiders went three-and-out. On the
next Denver possession, DE Derrick Burgess forced DEN RB Tatum
Bell to fumble and SS Jarrod Cooper recovered at the Denver 33-yard
line. In the ensuing possession, QB Kerry Collins was intercepted
and it was returned for a TD, sealing the loss. In addition to
the pass defended, Morrison led the team with 12 tackles (11 solo).
Washington and Renaldo Hill continue to replace CB Charles Woodson,
inactive with a broken leg. Hill had 10 tackles (9 solo). Woodson
is expected to miss at least three more weeks.
DT Warren Sapp had a sack erased on an offside by DE Tommy Kelly.
A week after a three-sack game, Kelly had just 1 solo tackle.
DE Bobby Hamilton remained inactive again with an ankle sprain.
DE N.D. Kalu was inactive with a shoulder injury that limited
him in Week Nine, as well. DT Darwin Walker slid over to start
at RDE opposite Jevon Kearse, who is playing through a sprained
AC joint in his shoulder, with Sam Rayburn joining the starting
lineup at DT in place of Walker. Rookie Trent Cole continued to
thrive in a pass rush role with Kalu out. Cole had 2 sacks, giving
him three in the last two games. The all-conference DE from Cincinnati
was third behind Antwan Peek (starting OLB Texans) and Andre Fraizer
(college teammate who is similar rookie tweener on Steelers) in
career sacks in Bearcat history and second to Peek in career tackles-for-loss.
He slipped to the fifth round because he is undersized for an
end, but obviously has nice upside as a pass rush specialist.
MLB Jeremiah Trotter, battling a sore knee, led the team with
11 tackles (10 solo). Zeke Moreno was released after a short stint
and Justin Ena was brought back for another tour of duty at LB
for the Eagles. Simoneau or Ena would see more work if Trotter’s
knee becomes more of a problem.
SS Michael Lewis suffered a minor concussion and rib injury in
the Monday night game. The team sounds a bit concerned about his
As expected, Clint Kriewaldt started in place of ILB James Farrior
who is out with a grade two MCL sprain. Farrior was hopeful about
playing Sunday, so don’t rule him out for returning this
week. Kriewaldt had 4 tackles (3 solo) and a pass defensed. OLBs
Clark Haggans and Joey Porter each had a sack. Porter also had
his first pick of the year. Haggans may not be 100% back from
a partially torn groin and Porter continues to play with a sore
knee. ILB Larry Foote led the team with 7 tackles (6 solo).
The play of rookie CB Bryant McFadden likely played a role in
the release of veteran Willie Williams. A starter until Ike Taylor
supplanted him, Williams fell even further with the rise of McFadden.
A week after his first career sack and forced fumble, McFadden
had a solo tackle and his first career fumble recovery. He’ll
still see limited time, but McFadden is developing nicely as a
The defense had no sacks and couldn’t stop SEA RB Shaun
Alexander. LB Pisa Tinoisamoa led the team with 10 tackles (8
solo). DE Leonard Little returned after missing two games after
the tragic death of his brother and had 4 tackles (2 solo).
FS Mike Furrey remains the impact player. He had a pick for the
third straight game and has made a big play in each game since
becoming a starter. He also broke up another pass in the game
and had 5 tackles (2 solo).
OLB Steve Foley, who missed the previous two games with an abdomen
injury, didn’t practice over the bye week and seems unlikely
to play again this week. Shaun Phillips will continue to replace
him as long as he is out.
After timing the surgery to heal over the bye, 1st round pick
Shawne Merriman is expected to play this week in a cast after
having pins inserted to support a dislocated wrist last week.
He has 19 tackles (16 solo), 4 sacks, and a forced fumble over
his last three games since becoming a starter.
Despite wind conditions that forced both teams to mostly run the
ball, the 49er defense was fantasy-deprived of the chance to put
up more tackle stats due to a plethora of Chicago turnovers, mostly
on punts. CB Shawntae Spencer made a nice pick in the end zone
with a beautiful break on the ball, after baiting rookie CHI QB
Kyle Orton into to lobbing one to a seemingly open Mushin Muhammad.
He also had 4 tackles (2 solo).
SS Tony Parrish broke his left ankle and fibula on the first
series of the game and will miss the rest of the season. Parrish
had started 121 consecutive games, including never missing a game
after surgery to remove a testicle due to an abnormality prior
to the 2002 season when signed as a free agent after leaving the
Bears. Keith Lewis replaced him and had 4 tackles (3 solo). Lewis
should get first crack at retaining the starting job, but Ben
Emanuel will see more work too.
ILB Derek Smith led the team with 7 tackles (5 solo). OLB Julian
Peterson had 5 solo tackles and broke up 2 passes.
CB Ahmed Plummer (ankle) and LB Saleem Rasheed (knee) both remained
out after arthroscopic surgery on their ailments a few weeks ago.
It was thought Plummer might return this week after returning
to practice, but he was inactive. HC Mike Nolan said CB Bruce
Thornton will remain a starter even when Plummer returns.
Two impressive back-ups once again stepped up, in starting roles
on Sunday. With DT Marcus Tubbs inactive due to leg injuries,
Rocky Bernard got the start and had a sack among his 5 tackles
(4 solo). Unfortunately, Bernard had to leave the game after a
right knee injury in the second half. Last week it was for D.D.
Lewis, this week rookie Leroy Hill got a start with OLB Jamie
Sharper out indefinitely with a staph infection in his right knee.
Hill stayed at WLB, where he replaced Lewis in Week Nine, while
Lewis, who returned from his own knee injury, moved over to Sharper’s
SLB spot. Hill had 4 solo tackles, including his fourth sack of
the season. Hill is undersized, but a playmaker with great athleticism
and instincts. He has nice dynasty potential, and could be the
next Demorrio Williams. He has good value as long as Sharper is
out. Sharper’s infection was unknown when he had the knee
drained before his Week Nine game, but swelling returned and it
was drained again last week. It’s now looked at as fairly
serious and he could miss up to a month. This was the first game
Sharper missed in his nine-year career, after playing in 136 consecutive
games and starting in all but one.
Rookie MLB Lofa Tatupu led the team with 10 tackles (9 solo),
including a sack.
Nickel CB Andre Dyson was injured again, leaving the game with
a lower back strain. Dyson had just returned last week after missing
two games with a hamstring injury. Kelly Herndon, who replaced
Dyson as a starter when he was out, had 8 tackles (6 solo). CB
Marcus Trufant had 3 tackles, including chasing down STL K Jeff
Wilkins and breaking up a bizarre and ill-advised fake FG attempt
that must have made Ram fans wonder if Mike Martz had returned
to the sidelines. FS Marquand Manuel had 8 solo tackles, broke
up a pass, and recovered a fumble. SS Michael Boulware had 6 tackles
(4 solo) and a pick.
Simeon Rice owners upset with his performance the last two weeks
faced even more frustration if they decided to bench him this
week. After two weeks of goose eggs, he posts 4 solo tackles,
including 2 sacks with 2 forced fumbles, as well as his fifth
career interception, for good measure. The second fumble was recovered
by DL Dewayne White deep in Redskin territory and set up a short
TD run. DE Greg Spires had to leave in the fourth quarter with
a sprain of the AC joint in his left shoulder. He is questionable
this week and Ellis Wyms or Dewayne White would replace him if
he is inactive.
With Dexter Jackson already out due to a hamstring injury, FS
Will Allen was sidelined with a left knee sprain. Kalvin Pearson
replaced him and it doesn’t look good for Allen this week,
so Jackson’s return could be expedited.
HC Jeff Fisher hopes the bye can help LB Peter Sirmon heal his
knee and ankle injuries. Sirmon was active, but did not play in
Week Nine. Fisher talked about the importance of Sirmon’s
presence not just for his football skills, but also as a coach
on the field for the defense.
After seven turnovers and ten sacks with Chris Simms at QB for
TB the previous two weeks, the Redskin defense couldn’t
muster one of either and struggled while missing DT Cornelius
Griffin and FS Sean Taylor in the lineup. Griffin missed another
game due to a strained hip flexor and was again replaced by Demetric
Evans, who posted 4 tackles (2 solo), a pass defensed, and a fumble
recovery. Pierson Prioleau replaced Taylor, whose ankle remained
in a boot cast on Monday. Taylor is also battling shoulder problems.
OLB Marcus Washington led the team with 6 solo tackles. OLB Lavar
Arrington remained a starter, but was a disappointment with just
3 solo tackles.
Several Redskin players were fined for uniform infractions in
Week Nine varying from un-tucked jerseys to different colored
socks and shoes. The fines totaled $55,000 and involved most of
the starting defense. Several players are appealing, but it is
apparent the NFL is out to make and example and/or has had previous
problems with the Redskin look. Only tangentially related to Washington
IDPs, but an interesting observation about the conform-or-pay
Gestapo tactics of the NFL front office when it comes to uniforms.