Last Week's Projections
(12-4) Straight Up - 75.0%
(8-7-1) Against The Spread - 53.3%
For The Season
(95-65) Straight Up - 59.3%
(88-69-3) Against The Spread - 56.0%
Indianapolis (-9.5) at Detroit,
If Detroit fans become a little sleepy from the trypophan,
I'm sure Peyton Manning's aerial attack will wake them up.
The Colts get a chance this Thanksgiving to show the entire country
what Indianapolis area viewers already know: It's fun to watch Manning
throw touchdowns. Stop picking at the turkey skin and play Manning,
RB Edgerrin James, WRs Marvin Harrison, Reggie Wayne and Brandon
Stokley as well as TEs Marcus Pollard and Dallas Clark. Sure, somebody
might get left out - but your chances are good for a touchdown and
75 or more yards in offense at each of these skill positions. Defensively,
the standouts in the secondary are different from week to week depending
on injuries, but LB Cato June and DL Robert Mathis are pretty consistent
in the front seven. Also start DB Mike Doss, who is back this week.
The Lions have their work cut out for them keeping up with the Colts
juggernaut, but their fantasy performance should benefit from the
shootout atmosphere the Indy matchup propagates. Go with QB Joey
Harrington, WR Roy Williams and RB Kevin Jones. IDP options include
DBs Brock Marion and Dre Bly, LB Earl Holmes and DL James Hall.
Final Score: Colts 37, Lions
Cleveland (+6) at Cincinnati,
Butch Davis and Cleveland's coming
The Bengals are on their own
This Sunday I hear the drumming
The battle in Ohio...
Gotta get down to it
Holcomb is gunning us down
Should have been a starter long ago
What if you owned him and
Had him dead on the bench?
Now you can prove that you know.
The Browns, with Garcia injured, will probably turn over the once-capable
offense to proverbial backup Kelly Holcomb, who plays as efficiently
as the average NFL starter but can't get the clipboard out of his
hand to save his bacon. With RB Lee Suggs injured - again - the
Browns turn to William "Blood" Green. I think this will be a good
week for the Cleveland offense, which will likely be pretty loose
with such low expectations. I'm smelling a big upset, but that could
just be the turkey cooking. WR Antonio Bryant might catch a few
deep balls this week and TE Aaron Shea will continue to be a good
play. On defense, it's DL Kenard Lang, LB Andra Davis and DB Robert
The Bengals offense might have a tough time cracking the Browns,
who are underrated and have improved throughout the year. Stay away
from Palmer, but go with Rudi Johnson and Chad Johnson, just because
you have to. IDP options include DL Duane Clemons, DL Justin Smith,
LB Landon Johnson and DB Madieu Williams.
Final Score: Browns 31, Bengals
Jacksonville (+6) at Minnesota,
With my opponent sporting Daunte Culpepper and most of the Vikings
offense, I'm somewhat enthusiastic about Minnesota turning the
ball over six or seven times. And if I didn't know any better,
I'd keep my hunches to myself. But I think the Jaguars are bound
to play inspired ball coming off a tough loss to Tennessee and
facing against one of their toughest opponents yet.
The Jaguars have some uncertainty at QB, but either Byron Leftwich
or David Garrard will be good plays this week at Minnesota, which
is a breeding ground for fantasy points. RB Fred Taylor are WR
Jimmy Smith are also wise plays with a big win on the line for
Jacksonville. IDP options include DL Greg Favors, LB Mike Peterson
and LB Akin Ayodele.
The Vikings may get Randy Moss back this week, but beware the
false sense of security the Randy Ratio can bring. Even with two
or three touchdowns as a guarantee, I'd be surprised if Culpepper
didn't turn the ball over multiple times as well. Although the
Jags have a good run defense, RB Onterrio Smith will likely get
some catches and a score. Don't forget to start WR Nate Burleson
and TE Jermaine Wiggins. On defense, DL Lance Johnstone comes
off a huge game, so start him, LB E.J. Henderson and DB Antoine
Winfield, who has boatloads of tackles and a few picks this year.
Final Score: Jags 27, Vikings
Philadelphia (-7) at
N.Y. Giants, 1:00 p.m.
I knew the Giants would wake up and smell New Jersey sooner or
The Eagles have several excellent fantasy options this week, including
all of the stars from Week One: QB Donovan McNabb, RB Brian Westbrook,
WR Terrell Owens and TE L.J. Smith. On defense, it's a little
more complicated, but I'd go with LB Jeremiah Trotter and DBs
Lito Sheppard, Brian Dawkins and Sheldon Brown.
The Giants will play better than in the season opener, but I still
can't recommend starting rookie QB Eli Manning. RB Tiki Barber
and TE Jeremy Shockey should be safe, but stay away from wide
receivers Amani Toomer and Ike Hiliard. On defense, DB Gibril
Wilson, LB Kevin Lewis and LB Nick Greisen are all good plays
if healthy come gametime.
Final Score: Eagles 30, Giants
Chicago at Dallas (-3),
Thanksgiving day in Big D. It is a yearly tradition that we all
love. The Cowboys especially as they have won over 70% of Turkey
Day games over the years. Many teams have wanted to share the
national spotlight on this day but the NFL won't let it happen.
The Julius Jones and Drew Henson era has begun officially this
week. Speaking of official the Cowboys got officially thumped
by the Ravens last week. They lost 30-10 and made Kyle Boller
look like a superstar. This defense is pitiful and badly in need
of an overhaul. It doesn't help your cause when your QB continues
to put the defense in bad positions with interceptions. Testaverde
has thrown 8 over his last thre games. Parcells is loyal to a
fault however it is time to break in the new kid while there is
season left to play. I think they will come out fired up and the
defense will not have to be great to stop this offense. Henson
has more tools than Testaverde and Jones should have a big day
and take some pressure off the kid.
The Bears were not expected to do much last week against the Colts
and that is what they did. Nothing. Getting the crap kicked out
of them by 31 and letting the Edge steamroll them for 200 yards.
That is pathetic. However pick your poison with that team. If
you concentrate on the run Manning will let the cannons fire on
you. If you go Vice Versa and try to stop the pass then the Edge
has alot of running lanes. What are you going to do? The Bears
decided not to stop anything last week and let Manning roll up
211 yards and 4 TDS. The Bears just decided to let this game go
and wait for Thursday, as the opponent will be more to their liking.
Krenzel will still be behind center and that is not good. I have
never seen anyone do less as a QB and be 3-1. But that is today's
NFL. Thomas Jones is back but is really going to be keyed on this
game. I wouldn't start anyone really.
Final Score: Cowboys 21, Bears
San Diego (+3) at Kansas
City, 1:00 p.m
Curious line this week on this game. The Chargers are the leagues
hottest team yet they are 3-point underdogs? Against a depleted
Chiefs team that is still looking for a pass interference call
on Tony Gonzalez. Weird but true. The Chiefs tried their damndest
to beat the defending champs last week but didn't have the slightest
bit of defense to do it. They just couldn't stop Brady and he
carved them up like turkey on Thanksgiving. Looks like Holmes
will be out again this week and Blaylock gets the start. The difference
is that the Chargers have a good defense. Great against the run
as they have not allowed a 100-yard rusher all year. So Blaylock
will not be a good start in this one. Go with Green, Gonzo, and
maybe Morton. Green had a fabulous game last week by the way.
It just looks to be a too little too late.
We knew at the first of the year that one of these teams would
be looking for the division crown at this point. We just didn't
think it would be the Bolts. Marty has got to be coach of the
year if this keeps up. I mean gosh some people thought they might
not win a game. Picking up McCardell has been a genius move and
they have just been rolling ever since. They are tied with the
Broncs for the lead and should not be looking forward to that
game until they get through this one. Tomlinson finally had a
breakout game last week rushing for 164 yards on a man sized 37
carries. That is what owners envisioned at the first of the year.
He is looking healthy and ready for the stretch run. But the big
story in Chargers-vile is the play of Antonio Gates. I usually
don't compare folks to the great Gonzalez but this guy may be
the next coming. He leads the AFC in TDs with 9 just behind Owens
for the league lead. That is incredible for a guy who didn't play
college football at Kent State. He is the #1 TE in football in
my opinion. Start Brees, Tomlinson, Gates, and McCardell.
Final Score: Chargers 30, Chiefs
Tampa Bay at Carolina
(+2 1/2) , 1:00 p.m.
So much for the 49ers hanging with the Bucs for 8 1/2. What a
slaughter that was. I mean I don't think the 49ers got passed
the 20. Erickson needs to find another job. I would want to get
out of there too. That team is horrible and doesn't look to be
getting better anytime soon. Griese got in there and looked to
do some things right but he had a few mistakes. Didn't hurt them
though as the 49ers could not score all day. Pittman looked good
with 106 yards and two TDs. I never understood why Gruden went
and got Garner anyway. Pittman is younger and a better player
for that matter. I know his off-field issues are alarming but
concentrate on someone who isn't on the south side of 30 for a
change. This game will be much different for the Bucs. They are
away from home. They will be facing a much better offense. We
will see how they respond.
Carolina broke out the offense and the defense against the Cardinals
who were playing some decent ball before last week. However the
defense forced three interceptions from King and one fumble recovery.
Nick Goings rushed for 121 yards and three scores. It looks like
Daivs may be done for his career and if he is still available
you need to pick up Goings as he looks to be the man for the time
being. I don't think there is a hotter receiver not named T.O.
than Muhammad right now. They guy has had 3 100-yard games in
his last four and 7 TDs in that same span including 5 in the last
two weeks. He is putting up monster numbers right now and you
have to ride the wave until it is gone. The Carolina defense would
not be a bad play in this either. Start Delhomme, Goings, and
Muhammad in this one.
Final Score: Panthers 24, Bucs
Tennessee at Houston
(+1 1/2), 1:00 p.m
The Texans put on a great effort against the Packers last week.
But as many teams have seen the greatness of Favre usually comes
through. As my friend said last week as he Packers were starting
their final drive. "They should just give him the ballgame now
and avoid the embarrassment". A few minutes later Longwell is
driving one down the middle, game over. Heartbreaking but a lesson
to Carr on how a champion wins games. Carr had a decent game as
he didn't turn the ball over but his numbers were not that great
and he didn't make enough plays to win it. The defense kept Favre
under wraps for most of the game with a zone blitz and confusing
shifts. He got his yards but they had a bend don't break thing
going on. They let Donald Driver go nuts and torch the hell out
of them. Offensively the Texans were not at their best other than
Johnson who had 100-yards receiving. Go with Carr, Davis, and
Johnson in this one.
The Titans are an enigma to me. Every time I pick against them
they win then every time I pick with them they lose. Maybe they
won't me to pick against them every week. Well they got their
wish this week. McNair was back last week against the Jags and
looked ok. They played some consistent ball and won this game
surprisingly. Smith had 95 yards rushing in Chris Brown's absence.
There was not much offense in this one as the defenses ruled the
day. I think however this week may be different. I like the Texans
offense to make some big plays this week and the Titans offense
to cough up the ball at least twice. McNair is bound to have a
bad start in him trying to come back from injury and crowd will
be on him in Houston. Start Smith.
Final Score: Texans 32, Titans
Washington at Pittsburgh
(+10 1/2) , 1:00 p.m
The Steelers won the game last week but not convincingly. They
were big favorites against the Bengals and almost let them pull
out a victory. Roethlisberger finally had a game that he might
want to forget as he made some mistakes. He missed several open
receivers, fumbled the ball, and generally looked like a rookie
in this one. I know everybody thinks he is the second coming of
Joe Namath but give the kid some slack it will take him some time
to get there. He is going to have many games like this before
he reaches his full potential. He had a miserable 138 yards passing
mostly on short routes as they kept the offense simple for him.
At some point defenses are going to figure that out and take the
Bus away and make Ben beat them. In the playoffs you will see
that and don't be surprised if the kid falters. He has a lot of
football in him so expectations are important. However the Skins
will not pose a challenge. Start Bettis, Plax, and Ward.
Joe Gibbs probably wished he were still racing right now. You
have to understand that this is a different NFL than what Gibbs
is used to. His biggest mistake was Brunell because he has nothing
left in the tank. Believe me when I say this situation is not
going to get any better. The credit card bill will come due in
about 2 years and all of these free agent pick-ups will weight
this team down for years. See 49ers. Portis just had a horrendous
game with only 37 yards rushing. Hope he isn't your start back.
You are probably about 2-8 right now. He has only had two 100-yard
games out of 10. In that same span he has been less than 70 yards
5 times. He has only 3 TDs. You can blame it on the offense, the
line, whatever. But he hasn't done his job either. Right now you
would have to say the Broncos are living the dream. I hate to
say that because I hate the Broncos but I call it like I see it.
Start nobody from this team, as the Steelers will put the finishing
touches on this week.
Final Score: Steelers 28, Skins
at New England (+7), 4:15 p.m
New England at home. It is about as automatic as dying and taxes.
Bet the farm on this one as the Pats are making their annual run
through the bottom half of the schedule in fine fashion. They
got back their leading receiver in Branch last week as if this
offense needed any more firepower. When a guy like Troy Brown
has to play defense just to get on the field then you know you
have some receivers. This offense will not be stopped I can tell
you. You are going to have to outscore them. The Chiefs tried
last week but could not get it done. Brady had another fine day
at the office with 315 yards and a score. Corey had has normal
workman like day with 98 yards and 2 scores and the aforementioned
Branch had 105 and a score. Looks like Patriot football to me.
The Defense is still having problems with the fact they have no
secondary right now. However they bent but did not break last
week not allowing Gonzo to score to beat them. FYI though I have
to go with the Chiefs on this one. Gonzo got mugged.
The Ravens pitched an almost shutout against the Cowboys. Defensively
they had a field day. Harassing any QB that wanted to come under
center. Forcing a fumble and two picks. Boller looked good against
the Cowboys secondary (who doesn't) throwing for 232 yards and
2 scores. His favorite target being Travis Taylor who had 69 yards.
Lewis got injured in the first quarter and does not look to be
playing this week. Look for Taylor to get the start. Chester Taylor
that is. However without Lewis they just don't have the firepower
to stay with the Pats at home. Ray Lewis and his band of merry
men will try to do their thing but the offense has to score and
I don't think they will do that. Start nobody from this team as
Final Score: Pats 28, Ravens
at Seattle (-5), 4:15 p.m
Hate picking against Buffalo. I didn't want to last week as I
thought they might have chance against the Rams and they did.
I just didn't have the balls to pull the trigger. But they are
away from that purgatory they call a stadium and are in Seattle
where the Seahawks do not lose (that often). Buffalo simply played
an inspired half against the rams as they did what most teams
that beat the Rams do. They were very physical and got into their
heads. Martz team is not very good when it becomes a physical
showdown. They like the frilly offensive showdowns. Why is it
that Martz complains constantly when his team loses? It is always
about cheap shots. Just take the loss, heal, and shut up. Anyway,
Bledsoe came back strong and had 185 yards and 3 scores. Mr. McGahee
broke the 100-yard barrier and had another 27 yards rushing. I
like the fact that Buffalo will be able to score on this defense
so start Bledsoe, Moulds, and Willis.
Seattle's receivers are laughable. It is getting ridiculous with
all the drops. I watched Dilfer walk off the field on Sunday smiling
to himself. It is like you are amazed when they do catch it. Jerry
Rice was the leading receiver with 86 yards and a score. He knows
how to catch a ball. He probably will be better at catching a
ball than Darrell Jackson when he is 50. Shaun Alexander continued
his torrid pace and had 96 yards and a score. His is bordering
Top 3 territory. I think they will have a tough time moving the
ball against Buffalo if Dilfer starts. They need Hasslebeck to
move this offense and the receivers to catch the damn ball. Start
Hasslebeck if he plays, Alexander, and Jackson.
Final Score: Seahawks 24, Bills
New Orleans (+9.5) at
Atlanta, 4:05 p.m.
Atlanta has a four game lead on New Orleans and Tampa Bay in the
NFC South, and there's nothing to lead me to believe that gap
won't become larger.
The Saints have surrendered 288 points in ten games this year,
second only to San Francisco in terms of defensive futility. Offensively,
the outlook is much better, with the Saints somewhere in the middle
of the pack. I would expect these guys to score a few less since
Atlanta is one of the better defenses in the NFC, but you never
know. QB Aaron Brooks is a good play only in deep 1QB leagues
or as a #2 QB, but RB Deuce McAllister and WR Joe Horn are must
starts each week. WR Donte Stallworth, coming off the best game
of the season, might be a good #3 receiver, and TE Boo Williams
is probably safe as well. On defense, start DB Jay Bellamy, LB
Orlando Ruff and DL Charles Grant.
The Falcons have been the toughest team to call from week to week
this season. Start QB Mike Vick at home against New Orleans and
his cousin Brooks. In addition, RB Warrick Dunn and Alge Crumpler
will have big games, but beware WR Peerless Price and RB T.J.
Duckett, who have been anemic at times this season. IDP options
include DL Patrick Kerney, DL Rod Coleman, LB Keith Brooking and
DB Bryan Scott.
Final Score: Falcons 23, Saints
(No Line/Pick) at San Francisco, 4:15 p.m.
Are there two teams more pathetic than these two in the league?
Considering the Colts have outscored BOTH Miami and San Fran COMBINED
so far this season, it's hard to day there is.
The Dolphins have only two decent fantasy starters - WR Chris
Chambers and TE Randy McMichael. Stay away from everybody else
if you can. On defense, there's a few good IDP guys, including
DL Jason Taylor and LB Zach Thomas. Watch and see if Thomas plays
this week, and consider starting DB Patrick Surtain.
The 49ers have been so bad, it's hard to recommend starting anybody,
but RB Kevan Barlow, WR Brandon Lloyd and TE Eric Johnson are
still the best these guys have. On defense, stick with LB Jamie
Winborn, LB Derek Smith and DB Tony Parrish.
Final Score: Dolphins 13, Niners
N.Y. Jets (-3) at Arizona,
Despite a 3 point win over the Browns, I still wouldn't recommend
taking a team led by Quincy Carter, who won't be happy with the
multiple blitzes he sees from the Arizona defense this week.
The Jets have just one solid option this week - RB Curtis Martin
- but might get some points from WRs Santana Moss and Justin McCareins.
On defense, go with DL John Abraham, LB Eric Barton and LB Jonathan
The Cardinals come off a bad showing in Carolina, where the Panthers
dominated from the opening kickoff. RB Emmitt Smith is still this
team's best fantasy performer, but WRs Larry Fitzgerald and Anquan
Boldin deserve a chance against the Jets, who will get worn down
by Arizona this week and are due to give up some big yardage.
Defensive options include DB Adrian Wilson, LB Ronald McKinnon
and DL Bert Berry, if he's active Sunday.
Final Score: Cards 24, Jets
Oakland (+11) at Denver,
As much as Cliff and I have ripped Denver this year, they continue
to get it done in a tough division - where everybody but Oakland
is capable of scoring big points. Heck, even the Raiders have
rattled the scoreboard a couple times this year.
The Raiders don't have much going for them right now, but if I
had to pick somebody to play for me, it would be RB Tyrone Wheatley,
who seems to thrive from Raider adversity. QB Kerry Collins, and
the wide receivers are too inconsistent to play anymore, and they've
been very bad against the Broncos. IDP options include DL Tyler
Brayton and LB Danny Clark. Somebody from the secondary might
have to step up as well, so consider DBs Charles Woodson and Philip
The Broncos have a slew of solid fantasy options this week, including
QB Jake Plummer, RB Reuben Droughns, WRs Rod Smith and Ashley
Lelie and TE Jeb Putzier. Look for Plummer to rock the Oakland
defense all day long and put up a few scores. IDP options include
LB Al Wilson, DL Reggie Hayward and DBs Champ Bailey and John
Final Score: Broncos 27, Raiders
St. Louis at Green Bay
(+6), 9:00 p.m
WAHHHHH...WAHHHH...WAHHH. You know what that is. Mike Martz after
a loss. Pitiful loser mentality. That is why his team always cracks
under pressure or a physical defense. They adopt the same mentality
as the coach. They blame losses on cheap shots and officiating.
Just get physical back, stand up for yourself and quit being pushed
around the field. What a loser. In any event Martz will try and
get his team ready to play an important game against the Packers.
Because if my predictions are correct Martz will need this win
to keep up with the Seahawks for the division lead. Unfortunately
I don't think they will get it. Bulger had an ok game with 287
yards and two TDS. The three picks are what hurt this team. That
and a running game that was non-existent. They are going to Green
Bay were wins a scarce right now for opposing teams. Green Bay
will try and do the same thing. Push them around and make them
lose concentration. The Rams simply are not the same team indoors
and on grass. Play Bulger, Faulk, Holt, and Bruce
The Packers were in rare Sunday night form. Got to love Favre
right? What a competitor. It is almost unfair sometimes. You see
it coming but you can't stop it. Green Bay squeezed out the win
in regulation against the Texans. As mentioned above Favre played
late night heroics and drove the length of the field to win the
game. Sound familiar? People wonder what keeps him in it. I think
so saw why on Sunday. Driver had a terrific game. Green got hurt
earlier but game back and then left again. We really don't know
his availability is this week. However the Pack know they need
wins to keep up with the Vikes who might have Randy Moss this
week against the Jags at home. Go with the Pack on this one. Start
Favre, Driver, Walker, and Green if he plays.
Final Score: Packers 32, Rams