My humblest of apologies to the faithful, but an abbreviated version follows this week…we’ll be back to the regular full blown article next week. In the meantime, offense at a bit of a premium in some games this week. A slew of kickers get mentioned here and allow me to lead the “Damn You, Antonio Gates!!” chant….
Chicago 19, at Detroit 13 (overtime)
Battle for divisional supremecy goes the way of the Bears in this one. Despite a good effort from Kevin Jones (66 yards, TD), Chicago’s Charles Tillman intercepted a Jeff Garcia offering in overtime and went 22 yards untouched to end the game. Earlier in the fourth quarter, Thomas Jones left in the fourth quarter and did not return.
at Dallas 34, Arizona 13
Marion Barber (127 yards, 2 TD) was Bill Parcells’ RB du jour, and he ran very well as the Cowboys romp. Of note, Anquan Boldin left the game with an injury that may end up costing him some playing time in the weeks to come.
at New York Giants 36, Washington nil
Suffice to say that the Giants had emotion and something beyond this world on their side in this one as they thrash the Redskins. Jay Feely (5 FG, 3 PAT), Tiki Barber (206 yards, TD), and the Giants D (5 sacks, shutout) all perform well in the laugher. Of note, Clinton Portis was shaken up early in the game, and with things out of reach he played very little of the second half.
at Cincinnati 21, Green Bay 14
The Bengals picked off Brett Favre five times as they squeeze out a close win. Carson Palmer (237 yards, TD) the lone fantasy entity from either side to get a mention in this game. Of note, Chad Johnson got hurt in this one, but played thru the injury and should be ok.
at Carolina 38, Minnesota 13
The Vikings season continues to spiral downward as it looks like Duante Culpepper may miss the rest of the season with a knee injury. For the Panthers, Steve Smith (201 yards, TD) and Stephen Davis (40 yards, 2 TD) put up solid fantasy numbers in the easy win.
at Houston 19, Cleveland 16
Houston wins, Houston wins, Houston wins!! The Texans ride the leg of Kris Brown (4 FG, 1 PAT) as he’s the only fantasy player worthy of a mention from this contest.
at St.Louis 24, Jacksonville 21
Playing without Mark Bulger, Torry Holt and Isaac Bruce, the Rams turned to their young RB, and did he ever respond. Steven Jackson (179 yards, TD) had a career day in helping the Rams to the victory. Fred Taylor (165 yards, TD) and Ernest Wilford (145 yards, TD) put up good numbers in a losing effort.
Oakland 34, at Tennessee 25
The Raiders take a rare road victory. Lamont Jordan (136 total yards, TD) and Kerry Collins (238 yards, 3 TD, 1 int) get kudos for the winners. The Titans couldn’t get out of their own way, as penalties and turnovers cost them at key moments in the game. Steve McNair (229 yards, TD), Chris Brown (97 yards, TD), and Courtney Roby (83 yards, TD) get into the ink this week in a losing effort.
Miami 21, at New Orleans 6
The struggles of the Saints continue, this week at the hands of the opportunistic Dolphins. Miami did just enough offensively as their defense did well to earn the win. Olindo Mare (4 FG, 1 PAT) the only player getting a mention from either side in this slow offensive game. Of note, Joe Horn did play in this one, and did relatively well (though not enough to get an official mention as he caught seven balls for 99 yards). Also, Ricky Williams did see more of the ball this week as well (16 rushes for 82 yards) but Ronnie Brown got the bulk of the work (23 rushes for 106 yards).
at San Diego 28, Kansas City 20
Kansas City had no answers for Player of the Week Antonio Gates (145 yards, 3 TD), and he ran wild all day. Trent Green (347 yards, 2 TD), Eddie Kennison (115 yards, TD), and Tony Gonzalez (97 yards, TD) did well for the visitors, but it was not enough to take the win. Of note, Priest Holmes left the game in the third quarter with an apparent concussion and did not return.
at Denver 49, Philadelphia 21
The Broncos scored early, then they scored late in this offensive showcase event. Jake Plummer (309 yards, 4 TD), Mike Anderson (126 yards, TD), and Tatum Bell (107 yards, 2 TD) all did well for the winners. On the other side, Donovan McNabb (283 yards, 3 TD, 2 int), Terrell Owens (154 yards, TD), and Brian Westbrook (104 total yards, TD) all put in their best effort, but it was not enough to overcome.
at San Francisco 15, Tampa Bay 10
An offensive offensive game came down to the kicking game, Joe Nedney (5 FG) brings rare victory to the Niners. Joe Galloway (149 yards, TD) performed well in a losing effort.
at New England 21, Buffalo 16
Despite dominating the time of possession 40:20, Buffalo could not put enough points on the board, and the Patriots take the come from behind win. When the Bills weren’t running with Willis McGahee (136 yards), Eric Moulds (125 yards, TD) was getting free in the secondary. New England got a rare turnover late in the game, and used Corey Dillon (72 yards, 2 TD) to win the game. Of note, Dillon did not start in the contest, Patrick Pass was running well, but he left the game early with a hamstring pull.