Welcome to Week 12 of “On the Rise, On the Fall.” Throughout the season, I will discuss players whose stock is rising and others who are not having the same luck. I will avoid naming the obvious studs – Calvin Johnson, Adrian Peterson, etc – and will keep to players whose performance was not as foreseeable.
On the Rise
Pennington, QB, Dolphins
: If you read my playoff article a few days ago, you’ll know how I feel about
Domenik Hixon, WR, Giants
: The Giants have made it known that they will not put up with Plaxico Burress’ antics. Hixon has already shown he can step up and make plays. He did that in Week 4 against
Studs of the Week
Matt Cassel, QB, Patriots
: Back-to-back 400 yard games against divisional opponents … are you serious? We are used to seeing this from Tom Terrific, but not from Matt Cassel. His 30/43, 415-yard, four total touchdown day earns him the Stud of the Week.
Terrell Owens, WR, Cowboys
: It’s a multiple Stud of the Week this edition because when TO has a big game and he isn’t recognized for it, he gets upset and cries. Here’s to honoring TO for his seven-catch (tied season high), 213-yard (season high), one-TD game. Take a look at how meaningful his game was Sunday, or how disappointing his season has been so far. His yardage total from Week 6 until Sunday was 174 yards and his TD total was just one.
Michael Turner, RB, Falcons
: One stud at each position this week. How can you not add the back from
On the Fall
Willie Parker, RB, Steelers
: He’s been on the shelf for most of the year so it’s pretty obvious that he is on the fall. However, this time, it’s for good. He looked gimpy on Thursday night and was evidently injured as Mewelde Moore came in for him to finish the game. Even if Parker does come back, he has disappointed too many times to trust him. Not to mention, he still faces
: Better luck next year, Jags. Your 4-7 start after a playoff berth last year is very disappointing and you could finish the season in the AFC South cellar. A romping by the Vikings without their QB throwing a TD in your building was a nice way to go out. By the way, fumbling twice in the first 20 seconds of the game isn’t easy. Congrats on accomplishing that feat. Good luck in ’09.
Donovan McNabb, QB, Eagles
: The Phillies got their championship, but don’t expect the Eagles to be in the playoffs anytime soon. It appears the McNabb era is over or could be soon. He had a good run in Philly, but could never seal the deal and win a championship. The Eagles face the Cardinals on Thanksgiving night so it will be interesting to see who gets the start, but on a short week, I expect Donovan to be under center.
Jay Cutler, QB,
: What’s up Jay? Back-to-back 200 yard days, and this Sunday, he failed to throw a TD. Forget the upcoming schedule, which looks good for the most part, but something isn’t right in
Duds of the Week
Frank Gore, RB, 49ers
: It wasn’t the best matchup, but we definitely expected more than 14 carries for 26 yards and one catch for six yards. Let’s hope he can rebound in the cold city of
Plaxico Burress, WR, Giants
: You should have looked elsewhere with the injury concerns entering the week, but if you had no choice and waited for the news that Burress was active, you got burned. On the first play of the game, he caught a six-yard pass, but it was negated because of a penalty. He never saw the field again. It’s been a frustrating season for Plax owners, dealing with both on and off the field issues.
One Week Wonder
Trent Edwards, QB, Bills
: Don’t get too excited about this kid. He hadn’t thrown for multiple TDs in a game all season until Sunday. He also ran for two scores, which doubled his total on the year. Even though he faces the Niners next week, expect his numbers to revert to mediocrity, for the rest of the year.
No Need to Worry
: Have no fear, the Lions are here! Enjoy your Thanksgiving meal with these two running all over the
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