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NFL Mailbag :: Week 10
by John Lubic
Published: November 9, 2007, 4:47 pm

Two weeks until Thanksgiving? Are you kidding me? This football season has been going by entirely too fast, and we’ve also reached the unfortunate time of year that features NBA games. (This lasts, including playoffs, approximately 11 months of the year.) As we race towards the holiday season, let's take time to name the ever-so-obvious...

Fantasy Playmaker of the Week

Congratulations to Adrian Peterson for the most obvious win of the season in this spot, as well as the slightly more reputable record of most rushing yards in a single game. The game of the year for Peterson comprised of 296 rushing yards and three touchdowns, but one wonders what he would have done had he gotten off to a quicker start. 253 of those yards – as well as two of those touchdowns – came in the second half. Peterson is a slam-dunk for Offensive Rookie of the Year honors this offseason, and fittingly had the game of his young career against the San Diego Chargers and LaDainian Tomlinson. Which will be the number one overall pick in the majority of fantasy drafts next season?

Lubic’s Top Five

1. New England* - Some Patriots* fans, including the formerly enjoyable Bill Simmons, who is becoming increasingly unreadable this year, are still complaining about the officiating in the win over the Colts last Sunday. First of all, did more questionable calls go against your team than the Colts? Yes. Was it a gross amount? No. Did they affect the outcome of the game? No. Bostonians are rapidly becoming the most annoying fans in sports. (Except for adam, dc, riles, and all of the rest of you awesome FPM-ers of course…)

2. Indianapolis – Tony Dungy and Peyton Manning, both of whom have the hearts of champions, will not be selling last week’s performance as a moral victory. Nor will I. But the Colts showed that the gap between 1 and 2 isn’t as large as we may have thought it to be.

3. Pittsburgh, Dallas, Green Bay are still the next three. Still waiting for some separation there. The Giants and Lions are next. Tennessee and Jacksonville are not for real.

Fearless Predictions

Detroit at Arizona – Somehow, the Lions are actually underdogs in this game despite winning three straight while the Cardinals have lost three straight. I see the Lions taking this one easily.
---Detroit 28, Arizona 20

Cincinnati at Baltimore – Both of these teams have fallen on hard times, having lost consecutive games against the Steelers and Bills. The Bengals’ season seems to be in worse shape, however, and I can’t see them winning this game on the road.
---Baltimore 20, Cincinnati 19

Buffalo at Miami – This could be the Dolphins best chance to avoid going winless until they host the Jets on December 2. The Dolphins have a higher ranked offense and defense than the Bills, but have been getting worse since losing Ronnie Brown while the Bills have been improving. Buffalo wins a squeaker on the road.
---Buffalo 24, Miami 20

Atlanta at Carolina – Joey Harrington vs. David Carr!
---Carolina 20, Atlanta 14

Chicago at Oakland – The Bears aren’t that bad, are they? Are they?
---Chicago 19, Oakland 17

Dallas at New York Giants – Now we’re talking! The battle for NFC East supremacy moves to the Big Apple (kind of) for the game of the week. I love to favor the home team in these types off games, but I’m just not sold on the Giants. They struggled to beat Miami by a field goal at a neutral site their last time out. Cowboys in a close one.
---Dallas 31, New York Giants 27

Minnesota at Green Bay
– I like Minnesota to keep this one closer than people think (Green bay is favored by 6 ½. Did anyone see what Adrian Peterson and the Vikings did last week?) Still, the Packers have an above-average run defense as well as home-field advantage, while the Vikings are having a radio call-in contest to determine their starting quarterback for the game.
---Green Bay 27, Minnesota 24

Indianapolis at San Diego – Which Chargers team will show up on Sunday night? The team that was throttled by Peterson and the Vikings 35-10 last week, or the team that had won its previous three games 104-27? My money’s on the latter team, making for an entertaining prime-time game.
---Indianapolis 30, San Diego 27

Denver at Kansas City – I still have no idea what to think of these AFC West teams. None of them have shown any consistency, with the exception of the Raiders, who are consistently awful. Home team wins.
---Kansas City 17, Denver 14

St. Louis at New Orleans – Lock. The Saints are back, baby, and the Rams are awful. One loss closer to a winless season.
---New Orleans 38, St. Louis 10

Cleveland at Pittsburgh – This will finally tell us whether the Browns are for real. (My guess: They’re not.) Both teams have had incredibly easy schedules and identical 5-2 records since the Steelers throttled the Browns 34-7 in Cleveland to open the season. Sorry, Browns fans. The run ends on Sunday.
---Pittsburgh 30, Cleveland 13

Jacksonville at Tennessee – I don’t like either of these teams as playoff contenders, but one of them has to win. I can’t figure out how the Titans keep winning with Vince Young at quarterback. As awful as he is, they have to start losing at some point. My guess is that it starts this week.
---Jacksonville 13, Tennessee 10

Philadelphia at Washington – Two struggling quarterbacks meet in this NFC matchup that should put an unofficial end to the Eagles’ season.
---Washington 23, Philadelphia 17

San Francisco at Seattle – Remember when Monday Night Football had compelling football games?
---Seattle 24, San Francisco 10

 To the Mailbag!

Our question this week comes from Jill in Philadelphia,

“Will Tom Brady break Peyton Manning’s single-season touchdown record?””

Great question, Jill, thanks for sending it in. Manning set the record with 49 touchdown passes in 2004, and Brady has an excellent chance at breaking it. Through nine games, Brady has 33 touchdowns, meaning he will need to throw 17 in his final seven games, an average of 2.4 touchdowns per game. (His current pace is 3.7). Now, I can’t predict him to maintain that absurd pace, but let’s break things down and look at the rest of New England’s schedule.

Nov 18 @ BUF
Nov 25 PHI
Dec 3 @ BAL
Dec 9 PIT
Dec 16 NYJ
Dec 23 MIA
Dec 29 @ NYG

As you can see, Brady still has to face the league’s #1 and #2 defenses in back-to-back weeks (Baltimore and Pittsburgh) as well as the solid defenses of the Giants, Eagles, and Bills.

So what’s my prediction? Brady sets the new record by one, finishing the season with an even 50 scoring passes.

Send in your fantasy football related questions!

Tags: Fantasy Football Advice, NFL Mailbag, NFL Predictions

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