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Week 8 Passing Matchups

by Mark Wimer and Joe Bryant, Exclusive to Footballguys.com

Great Matchups: [CHI] [IND] [JAX] [NO] [STL]
Good Matchups: [BUF] [DAL] [DEN] [DET] [GB] [SEA] [TEN]
Neutral Matchups: [NYJ] [PHI] [SD]
Tough Matchups: [ARI] [ATL] [BAL] [CAR] [CLE] [HOU] [MIA] [MIN] [NYG] [OAK] [SF]
Bad Matchups:


PLEASE NOTE: This does NOT replace the Cheatsheet ranking. The Cheatsheet rankings are the final say on where we see a player for that week. The Matchup Breakdowns are simply one more tool in the box when it comes to helping choose your lineup.

Also note, just because a player has a "bad" matchup, it does NOT mean he's not a starter in your league. If Peyton Manning is playing the toughest pass defense in the league, that just means he's got a tough matchup that week. He's also your starter unless you're loaded at QB. In the same way, if the worst QB on your roster has a "great" matchup that week, it doesn't necessarily mean he's your starter. It means we think he'll fare better than normal that week.

Bottom line is that the cheatsheets are the final say.


Chicago Bears Passing Offense vs Cleveland Browns Passing Defense (Great Matchup)

Jay Cutler has been forced into multiple turnovers by his most recent two opponents - he was held to 26/37 for 251 yards, one TD and three interceptions by the Bengals in the 45-10 loss last week, and threw for 27/43 for 300 yards, two TDs and two interceptions vs. Atlanta in the 14-21 loss there two weeks ago. In fantasy terms, he's been a QB #2 over the past four weeks, with 71/108 for 692 yards, five TDs and five interceptions (9/46/1 rushing), landing at #14 among signal callers during that time span. In short, he's been decent, but not outstanding, in recent games. Greg Olsen (10/82/2 receiving); Johnny Knox (12/107/1 receiving); and Devin Hester (15/186/1) have been his main receivers during the second quarter of the season. Hester set a career high with 8/101/1 receiving last week - it was his first time going over 100 yards receiving as a Bear. He's finding a comfort zone with Cutler as the games go by.

The good news for Chicago is the hapless, helpless Browns are coming to town. This team has allowed 1025 net passing yards in their last four games, and lead the NFL during that time span with 1,666 net yards allowed from scrimmage. Green Bay piled up 16/22 for 258 net yards, three TDs and one interception vs. Cleveland last week in the 3-31 loss to the Packers - Ben Roethlisberger threw for 23/35 for 403 net yards, two TDs and one interception vs. Cleveland the week prior. All told, the Browns average 244.3 net yards allowed per game, with 10 passing TDs given up vs. just three interceptions and 12 sacks generated to date. These guys are bad.

It's a great week to have Chicago players on your roster.

Weather: Soldier Field expects nice weather (for Chicago in November) - a high of 49 F and a low of 40 F with a 20% chance for precipitation. If the forecast holds up, weather conditions shouldn't play a big role in determining the outcome of this game.

The official NFL injury report with Probable, Questionable, Doubtful and Out designations will be available by Saturday. Please refer to the week 8 injury report for the latest injury news regarding your players.


Indianapolis Colts Passing Offense vs San Francisco 49ers Passing Defense (Great Matchup)

Peyton Manning has been outstanding this season, with 90/119 for 897 yards, eight TDs and two interceptions passing in the last four weeks and 156/215 for 1880 yards, 15 TDs and four interceptions thrown to date. However, the Colts have injury issues coming into this contest. Anthony Gonzalez may or may not be ready to return to the field this week - head coach Jim Caldwell has this to say on Anthony Gonzalez Monday - 'He ran some routes on Saturday. He thought he felt really good. He feels like he's close to going. Whether that's this week or next week remains to be seen. I think we may see a little something out of him this week.' Also, Reggie Wayne injured his groin last week (he had 7/83/1 receiving before exiting the game for good) - 'We'll probably have a little better feel for it as the week goes on. At this point, there's just a strain,' Indianapolis Colts coach Jim Caldwell said of Wayne's injured groin. 'He's getting it treated. He felt pretty good about it, but we'll see how it goes.'.

In the event that neither Gonzalez or Wayne can play, the Colts can still bring Austin Collie (4/36/1 receiving last week; 24/264/4 receiving to date (29th best fantasy WR in PPR leagues)) and Pierre Garcon (3/24/0 receiving last week; 14/240/2 to date (52nd best fantasy WR so far)) to the table to complement Dallas Clark (3/44/1 last week; 38/485/3 receiving to date, making him the #1 fantasy TE in points per game so far). It's not like the cupboard is bare for Manning, but it could be pretty thin this week - stay tuned.

San Francisco is currently 21st in the NFL averaging 236 net passing yards allowed per game, with eight passing TDs given up vs. six interceptions generated to date. The team is tied for 20th in the NFL with 13 sacks so far this year - this is a sub-par unit by most standards. Matt Schaub threw for 20/30 yielding 246 net yards, two TDs and zero interceptions last week; Matt Ryan piled up 22/32 for 329 net yards, two TDs and one interception vs. San Francisco back in week five.

Manning is one of the premier QBs in this league - even taking into account the injury woes in his WR stable, this is still a great matchup for Manning and the Colts.

Weather: Inside Lucas Oil Stadium, weather conditions won't impact the contest on Sunday.

The official NFL injury report with Probable, Questionable, Doubtful and Out designations will be available by Saturday. Please refer to the week 8 injury report for the latest injury news regarding your players.


Jacksonville Jaguars Passing Offense at Tennessee Titans Passing Defense (Great Matchup)

David Garrard had his best game of the season back in week four, when the Jaguars whipped Tennessee 37-17. He posted 27/37 for 323 passing yards, with three TDs and zero interceptions (plus 8/38/0 rushing in addition to the passing yards). Since then, Garrard has been up and down, with 75/111 for 846 yards, three TDs and two interceptions thrown in his last three games. He did turn in over 300 yards passing in Jacksonville's most recent game vs. St. Louis, with 30/43 for 335 yards, zero TDs and two interceptions (Jacksonville won 23-20). Mike Sims-Walker (11 targets for 9/120/0), Torry Holt (8 for 5/101/0), Mike Thomas (9 for 7/52/0) and Maurie Jones-Drew (7 for 5/45/0) did most of the damage for Garrard most recently. 'When we're running and protecting, I think we're able to generate offense like that,' said Jaguars coach Jack Del Rio after the victory. 'It was good to see.'

Tennessee is dead last in the NFL averaging 310.7 net passing yards allowed per game, with 19 passing scores (last in the NFL) allowed vs. just four interceptions generated (tied for next-to-last in the league). They are tied for 26th in the NFL with just 11 sacks. New England humiliated them with 38/45 for 426 yards, six TDs and zero interceptions two weeks ago - the week before that, Indianapolis rang up 36/44 for 309 net yards, three TDs and one interception on the beleagured Titans' squad.

There has never been a better time to be invested in the Jacksonville passing attack. Advantage, Jacksonville.

Weather: LP Field expects moderate weather on the first day of November, with a high of 63 F and a low of 43 F - there is a 0% chance for precipitation. It should be a fine day to play pro football (maybe the Titans can play at that level in nice weather?).

The official NFL injury report with Probable, Questionable, Doubtful and Out designations will be available by Saturday. Please refer to the week 8 injury report for the latest injury news regarding your players.


New Orleans Saints Passing Offense vs Atlanta Falcons Passing Defense (Great Matchup)

Drew Brees wasn't at his best vs. Miami (22/38 for 298 yards, one TD and three interceptions passing last week), especially early in the game as New Orleans fell behind 24-3 at one point. However, he helped his team (and his fantasy owners) with 2/3/2 rushing which helped offset the turnovers and also helped his team come-from-behind to win 46-34. In the end, it was enough to keep the Saints unbeaten. The usual suspects led the team in receiving - this week, Jeremy Shockey was #1 with five targets for 4/105/0; Marques Colston converted 12 chances into 5/72/1; and Devery Henderson handled six targets for 4/71/0 on the day. Lance Moore came back down to earth last week with four targets for 2/18/0.

This week, the Saints face their only legitimate rival for the NFC South crown, Atlanta, at home in the Louisiana Superdome. The Falcons have coughed up 768 net passing yards in their last three games (256 per contest, on average), with three interceptions and seven sacks to their credit in those contests. Tony Romo blew them up for 21/29 for 299 net yards, three TDs and zero interceptions last week, though - the banged-up Atlanta secondary is using a lot of journey-men and rookies in their DB rotation and the lack of experienced, quality personnel showed last week against Dallas. 'On the defensive side of the ball, we had some opportunities to stop some plays short of the first down and we did not do that,' coach Mike Smith said after the loss. 'We need to work more on our tackling. It's something that we pride ourselves in.' This team looks pretty suspect heading into the Superdome. On Tuesday, the DB cupboard got a little more bare as rookie S William Moore (2nd round pick), who has struggled with a hamstring injury since training camp, went on the IR due to the nagging complaint.

It's a bad thing to have a suspect secondary when your team is facing the Saints - advantage, New Orleans.

Weather: Inside the Louisiana Superdome, weather conditions won't play a role in determining this divisional grudge match.

The official NFL injury report with Probable, Questionable, Doubtful and Out designations will be available by Saturday. Please refer to the week 8 injury report for the latest injury news regarding your players.


St. Louis Rams Passing Offense at Detroit Lions Passing Defense (Great Matchup)

Marc Bulger had a rough game against the top-tier Colts last week, eking out 14/26 for 140 yards, zero TDs and two interceptions (Indianapolis has only allowed two passing TDs all year long). In fact, he's had a rough season with 78/135 for 780 yards passing, three TDs and three interceptions to his credit (currently 38th-ranked fantasy QB in average points per game). He's just .05 points per game ahead of Brady Quinn this year, to give you a reference point. Donnie Avery overcame his sore hip to post 2/58/0 receiving (four targets), followed by Danny Amendola (5 targets for 5/39/0) and Keenan Burton (5 for 3/28/0). The Rams lost 42-6.

The Lions are currently 30th in the NFL averaging 258.5 net passing yards allowed per game, with an astronomical 17 pass TDs given up to date (second-most behind Tennessee's 19). Green Bay bombed them for 29/37 yielding 328 net yards, two TDs and one interception back in week six; Pittsburgh recorded 23/30 for 262 net yards, three TDs and one interception the week before that. The Lions have only four interceptions (tied for next-to-last in the NFL) and 12 sacks (tied for 22nd in the NFL).

This is one of the best matchups St. Louis will see this year, thanks to the ineptitude of the Lions - advantage, St. Louis. We aren't excited about any of the Rams receivers, but if they're going to go off, this would be the week for it.

Weather: Inside Ford Field, weather won't be a concern for either team.

The official NFL injury report with Probable, Questionable, Doubtful and Out designations will be available by Saturday. Please refer to the week 8 injury report for the latest injury news regarding your players.


Buffalo Bills Passing Offense vs Houston Texans Passing Defense (Good Matchup)

'Lee's been my guy when I've been in there,' QB Ryan Fitzpatrick said after the 20-9 win over Carolina last Sunday. 'I enjoy throwing to Terrell [Owens] and Lee and Josh [Reed] as well. Lee's done a good job.' Fitzpatrick put together 11/22 for 123 yards, one TD and zero interceptions vs. Carolina, with 9 targets for 5/75/1 flowing to Evans. Two weeks ago, in relief of Edwards vs. the Jets, he threw 10/25 for 116 yards, one TD and one interception - Evans caught the TD in that one, too, with 11 targets for 4/68/1 - but the salient point here is Buffalo has won two straight games with Fitzpatrick at the helm . He's starting again this week. Terrell Owens (4/36/0 receiving over the last two games) owners probably aren't happy to hear that, but Evans owners are smiling at the news.

The Houston pass D is the team's weak link, with 904 net yards allowed in the last four games (226 per game, on average) - San Francisco's Alex Smith took over for a struggling Shaun Hill last week and almost overtook Houston with 15/22 for 206 yards, three TDs and one interception - all told, Houston gave up 21/33 for 238 net yards, three TDs and one interception last week. Carson Palmer managed 23/35 for 250 net yards, one TD and one interception vs. Houston two weeks ago. To date, the Texans average 228.4 net passing yards allowed per game (18th in the NFL), with nine passing TDs given up vs. four interceptions generated. They are tied for 29th in the NFL with just nine sacks - this is a sub-par pass defense, on the whole.

Fitzpatrick is gaining confidence - the sub-par Texans should allow him a good chance to take another step forward with his game. Advantage, Buffalo.

Weather: Ralph Wilson Stadium expects a high of 59 F with a low of 48 F on Sunday - there is a 20% chance for precipitation that day. As long as the forecast holds up, it should be a nice day to play (or watch) some pro football.

The official NFL injury report with Probable, Questionable, Doubtful and Out designations will be available by Saturday. Please refer to the week 8 injury report for the latest injury news regarding your players.


Dallas Cowboys Passing Offense vs Seattle Seahawks Passing Defense (Good Matchup)

Dallas WR Roy Williams wasn't happy with his return to the field, calling it the 'Worst game ever in my life'. Williams (1/16/0 receiving vs. Atlanta) continued, 'I don't know if I was a little rusty being out for two weeks, but what a good football team we got. That's all I can say.' While Williams was bumbling about wasting four of his five chances and becoming an afterthought in the Dallas attack, Miles Austin continued his tear through the NFL with 8 targets for 6/171/2 vs. Atlanta. He's Tony Romo's new #1 WR, folks. Jason Witten was second on the team last week with 7 targets for 5/53/0, and Martellus Bennett was third with 3 for 3/32/0. All told, Romo threw for 21/29 for 311 yards, three TDs and zero interceptions. He has posted 66/105 for 917 yards, five TDs and one interception in the last three games (ninth best fantasy QB in points per game during that span), while Austin has blazed to 19/440/4 to lead all fantasy WRs in points per game during that span of time. It's been an amazing emergence on Austin's part.

The Seahawks blanked the Jaguars in week five (holding Garrard and company to 19/32 for 161 net yards), but were embarrassed the next week by Arizona to the tune of 34/43 for 282 net yards, two TDs and one interception in a 27-3 loss. To date, the team is 16th in the NFL averaging 220.3 net yards allowed per game, with seven passing TDs given up vs. three interceptions generated (tied for last in the NFL). The team ranks eighth in the NFL in sacks generated, with 16, but the secondary isn't forcing turnovers this year. On balance, this is a what-you-see-is-what-you-get group - they are a mediocre pass D.

Romo and Austin are on a roll - against the so-so Seahawks, the Cowboys hold the advantage.

Weather: The forecast for Dallas Cowboys' Stadium is quite nice (69 F for a high with a low of 53 F, and a 0% chance of rain). The retractable roof may be open in such conditions, although if it turns stormy they'll close the roof. Weather conditions aren't likely to make a big impact on this game.

The official NFL injury report with Probable, Questionable, Doubtful and Out designations will be available by Saturday. Please refer to the week 8 injury report for the latest injury news regarding your players.


Denver Broncos Passing Offense at Baltimore Ravens Passing Defense (Good Matchup)

Kyle Orton has shocked the NFL and the fantasy community by excelling in his first season with the Broncos - he's currently the 17th best fantasy QB in the land in average points per game, with 124/194 for 1465 yards, nine TDs and only one interception through six games. If you play in a league that penalizes heavily for interceptions, he's likely on the cusp of the top 12. Over the last four weeks, Orton has been the 11th best fantasy QB in the land, with 75/106 for 802 yards, six TDs and the one interception thrown - as Orton has grown comfortable in Denver and with Brandon Marshall - who seems to have settled down and gotten with the program in recent weeks (he's the 10th best fantasy WR in the last four weeks, with 17/204/3 receiving during that time span), Orton has grown more and more productive. Only Eddie Royal, who leads the team in targets over the last four weeks with 25, has failed to thrive so far this year (he has 12/106/0 to his credit during that time span). Tony Scheffler has turned 14 targets into 13/172/1 receiving and looks very simpatico with Orton entering week eight, by the way.

The Ravens' D is not what it used to be - they are in the middle of the NFL range this year with 130 points allowed to date (the range being 66 (Denver) to 203 points allowed (Tampa Bay)). The drop-off is largely due to ineffective play in the secondary (the defensive front has only given up three rushing scores this year) - in fact, the Ravens' pass D is currently 23rd in the NFL with an average of 241.5 net yards allowed per game, with nine passing TDs given up vs. seven interceptions generated. They are currently tied for 16th in the NFL with 14 sacks to date (far less than usual) - meanwhile, the Broncos aren't very vulnerable to pass pressure with just nine sacks allowed to date (tied for sixth in the NFL). Brett Favre cruised to 21/29 for 259 net yards, three TDs and zero interceptions vs. Baltimore two weeks ago; Carson Palmer hit them for 18/31 yielding 261 net yards, one TD and one interception the week before that.

Orton and company are building momentum in this phase of the game, while the Ravens are regressing - this looks like a good matchup for Denver despite the hostile field.

Weather: M and T Bank Stadium expects temperate weather on Sunday, with a high of 60 F and a low of 44 F with a 10% chance of rain. As long as this forecast holds up, conditions shouldn't have a big impact on the game.

The official NFL injury report with Probable, Questionable, Doubtful and Out designations will be available by Saturday. Please refer to the week 8 injury report for the latest injury news regarding your players.


Detroit Lions Passing Offense vs St. Louis Rams Passing Defense (Good Matchup)

The news out of Detroit as of Tuesday, October 27th is mixed - Calvin Johnson says he feels 'optimistic' about playing vs. St. Louis, while Matthew Stafford is less committal, saying only that his knee feels better than the last time he tested it on October 14th, but that he doesn't know if he'll be available to play on Sunday. With Daunte Culpepper also nursing a sore knee, it's possible that we'll see Drew Stanton under center again, although Culpepper did practice on Tuesday. Whoever is under center is praying that Johnson can play -RB Kevin Smith outgained both Drew Stanton (5/11 for 57 yards, zero TDs and two interceptions) and Daunte Culpepper (6/14 for 48 yards, zero TDs and one interception) with 14/61/0 rushing in the 0-26 loss to Green Bay. Stafford was practicing fully on Wednesday, while Johnson was sidelined at mid-week.

The Rams' pass D is just as bad as their defensive front, having allowed an identical 11 TDs passing to the 11 they've handed over in the rushing phase of the game. The Rams are 25th in the NFL averaging 249.6 net passing yards allowed per game, with just five interceptions and only 12 sacks (22nd in the NFL) to their credit. Peyton Manning and the Colts hung 42 points and 23/34 for 235 net yards (zero sacks allowed) with three TDs and zero interceptions on the Rams last week.

Two bottom-of-the-barrel units clash in this one. We give the Lions a slight edge (they have home field advantage, for one thing), but we can't get excited about anybody on this unit other than Calvin Johnson (if he plays).

Weather: Inside Ford Field, weather won't be a concern for either team.

The official NFL injury report with Probable, Questionable, Doubtful and Out designations will be available by Saturday. Please refer to the week 8 injury report for the latest injury news regarding your players.


Green Bay Packers Passing Offense vs Minnesota Vikings Passing Defense (Good Matchup)

The Packers came up short in the Metrodome during week four, dropping the game 23-30. Aaron Rodgers did his part to win that game, though, with 26/37 for 384 yards, two TDs and one interception to his credit. Jermichael Finley (7 targets for 6/128/1), and Jordy Nelson (4 for 3/47/1) handled the TDs on that day. Since the loss, the Packers have won two straight games (with only three points given up in the last two contests), while Rodgers has piled up 44/57 for 604 yards, five TDs and only one interception (and the Packers a total of 57 points scored vs. Detroit and Cleveland). Unfortunately for the Packers, Finley suffered a knee sprain last week and is likely out of this contest. Last week, Rodgers was extremely efficient with his passes (15/20 for 246 yards, three TDs and zero interceptions), hitting Donald Driver (3 targets for 2/84/1) and LB/TE Spencer Havner (2 for 2/59/1) for TDs, along with James Jones (1 for 1/5/1). Greg Jennings handled the most balls, with eight targets for 5/52/0 to his credit. The Packers won 31-3.

The Vikings' pass D is the big issue for this club - they are currently 20th in the NFL averaging 234.7 net yards allowed per game, with 10 passing TDs allowed vs. six interceptions generated. The team leads the NFL with 24 sacks this year. That is an issue for the Packers, who have allowed 25 sacks to date, second-worst in the NFL - Rodgers was sacked eight times and hit nine more times (4.5 sacks went to Jared Allen) during the first game of this matchup. The noisy Metrodome contributed to the problems, without a doubt, but eight sacks in a game is just practically unheard of - do the Vikings have a key they are using to get a jump on the Packers' snap counts? It's possible... Last week, the Vikings managed to hold Ben Roethlisberger and company to 14/26 for 153 net yards, one TD and zero interceptions; but two weeks ago Joe Flacco threw down for 28/43 yielding 367 net yards, two TDs and zero interceptions vs. the Vikings.

Rodgers did well against Minnesota despite intense pass pressure back in week four - with improving health on the OL (Cleveland had zero sacks of Rodgers last week, though Detroit did notch five the week before), Rodgers may have better protection this week. In Lambeau Field, against the suspect Vikings' secondary, we think this is a good matchup on balance, despite the ferocious Minnesota pass rush.

Weather: Lambeau Field expects a high of 43 F and a low of 31 F with a 30% chance of precipitation on Sunday. If the weather is stormy at game time, the precipitation could fall as freezing cold rain, sleet, snow, or a mixture of all three. In such conditions, all phases of the game become more difficult - owners of Vikings or Packers will want to look at a shorter-term forecast before setting their lineups this week.

The official NFL injury report with Probable, Questionable, Doubtful and Out designations will be available by Saturday. Please refer to the week 8 injury report for the latest injury news regarding your players.


Seattle Seahawks Passing Offense at Dallas Cowboys Passing Defense (Good Matchup)

Since Matt Hasselbeck's return to action, the Seahawks' performance has been a study in contrasts: 18/30 for 241 yards, four TDs and zero interceptions in the 41-0 victory over Jacksonville, followed by a 10/29 for 112 yards, zero TD and one interception performance vs. Arizona during a 27-3 loss. The constant targeting of T.J. Houshmandzadeh (7 and 8 targets, respectively, for 9/111/2 receiving during the two weeks in question) and Nate Burleson (8 and 5 targets, leading to 8/138/2) demonstrate who Hasselbeck will likely lean on in weeks to come - John Carlson (3 and 6, respectively, for 4/86/0) and Deion Branch (4 and 7, for 4/32/0) will likely be in the mix, too.

The Dallas pass D has been regularly giving up TDs (Matt Ryan threw for 19/35 for 174 net yards, two TDs and two interceptions last week; Matt Cassel hit them for 23/41 yielding 232 yards and two TDs back in week 5; Kyle Orton threw for 20/29 for 221 net yards and two TDs during the game prior), but they did manage to turn up the heat on Matt Ryan last week with four sacks and the two picks (putting them at 14 for the season, tied for 16th in the NFL). Currently, the unit ranks 22nd in the NFL averaging 238.5 net yards allowed per game, with 10 passing scores allowed vs. four total interceptions generated (tied for next-to-last in the NFL in that category). Most weeks, it's pretty easy to pass the ball when playing Dallas.

The Seahawks have been up and down with Hasselbeck at the helm, but he's had another week to heal up his ribs and has a good matchup in front of him this week despite the hostile stadium.

Weather: The forecast for Dallas Cowboys' Stadium is quite nice (69 F for a high with a low of 53 F, and a 0% chance of rain). The retractable roof may be open in such conditions, although if it turns stormy they'll close the roof. Weather conditions aren't likely to make a big impact on this game.

The official NFL injury report with Probable, Questionable, Doubtful and Out designations will be available by Saturday. Please refer to the week 8 injury report for the latest injury news regarding your players.


Tennessee Titans Passing Offense vs Jacksonville Jaguars Passing Defense (Good Matchup)

Since the 37-17 loss to Jacksonville back in week four, Tennessee's quarterbacks have been in a rapid downwards spiral (picture a flushing toilet here) - Kerry Collins went from 29/48 for 284 yards, one TD and two interceptions vs. Jacksonville to 2/12 for -7 yards, zero TDs and one interception vs. New England two weeks ago (a 59-0 loss was the result). However, as bad as Collins has been, at least he's completing some passes - Vince Young has zero completions out of five attempts in relief of Collins so far, and has shown zero reason for the Titans to turn to him over Collins. The Tennessee offense comes out of the bye week in extreme distress (their coach, Jeff Fisher, has started wearing Colts' jerseys at public events in order 'to feel like a winner.'). It's bad in Tennessee right now, folks. For those who'd like to blame the lemon game on the bad weather in New England two weeks ago, remember that Tom Brady and his backup, Brad Hoyer, threw for 38/45 for 426 net yards, six TDs and zero interceptions in the identical weather. Collins' take on the last game went like this: 'I know this: We are all responsible for this loss and for the past couple of losses,' Collins said. 'I know there are things we can all do better.' If owner Bud Adams has his way, Collins won't get a chance to improve as Adams is publicly calling for Vince Young in the lineup, although coach Jeff Fisher refuses to reveal who'll start this week for 'competitive reasons'. We're not sure it's going to make much difference who starts - the offense is in a shambles right now, and neither QB is playing well (although coach Fisher reports that each had a good week of practice last week, with Collins putting in the best showing). Our bottom line here is it's probably best to avoid Tennessee players, especially the QBs, unless you have no other choice due to bye week pressures/a lack of quality waiver wire options.

Jacksonville is currently 31st in the NFL averaging 262 net yards allowed per game, with 12 passing scores given up vs. just fivce interceptions and a league-worst five sacks generated so far. Marc Bulger managed 22/34 for 207 net yards, one TD and one interception against Jacksonville two weeks ago (he has three TDs this season, by the way) - Matt Hasslebeck blasted these guys for 18/30 for 236 net yards, four TDs and zero interceptions three weeks ago. Nobody fears the Jaguar's secondary.

Both teams are really bad in this phase of the game - given what Collins was able to do vs. Jacksonville in the first game (and the Titans' home field advantage), we give Tennesee a slight edge in this phase of the game, but realize that Vince Young, and not Collins, may be slinging the football on Sunday - and he has zero completions this year.

Weather: LP Field expects moderate weather on the first day of November, with a high of 63 F and a low of 43 F - there is a 0% chance for precipitation. It should be a fine day to play pro football (maybe the Titans can play at that level in nice weather?).

The official NFL injury report with Probable, Questionable, Doubtful and Out designations will be available by Saturday. Please refer to the week 8 injury report for the latest injury news regarding your players.


New York Jets Passing Offense vs Miami Dolphins Passing Defense (Neutral Matchup)

Miami won the first matchup between these two teams in week five, 31-27, on a TD run by Ronnie Brown with six seconds left in the game after Thomas Jones put the Jets ahead at 5:12 in the fourth quarter with a three yard TD run - it was a back-and-forth divisional battle the first time these teams met. Mark Sanchez threw for 12/24 for 172 yards, one TD and zero interceptions in the game. During the weeks surrounding that game, Sanchez has struggled mightily, sandwiching careful outings between disastrous games (45/95 for 572 yards, two TDs and eight interceptions thrown over the last four weeks). Last week, against the moribund Raiders, he had a careful outing with 9/15 for 143 yards, one TD and zero interceptions - it helped that the team rushed the ball 54 times for 316 yards and four scores. David Clowney was the top receiver last week with five targets for 4/79/1, followed by Dustin Keller (4 for 1/26/0). There isn't a lot of juice on this unit right now, fantasy owners.

The Dolphins field the league's 19th ranked pass D at this point in the season, averaging 233.5 net yards allowed per game, with seven pass TDs given up over six games vs. six interceptions generated. They are tied for 6th in the NFL with 17 sacks to date - the Jets are in the middle of the NFL with 13 sacks allowed so far this year. Last week, this team challenged Drew Brees with three interceptions, but eventually lost the game 46-34 while allowing 22/38 for 276 net yards, and one TD (in the second half) to Brees. On balance, the Dolphins are what they appear to be - a mediocre-to-sub-par unit that just lost their top CB, Will Allen, for the season due to a torn ACL.

The Jets have an inconsistent rookie at the helm, but against the mediocre Dolphins (who have to juggle their lineup this week), they have an even chance at a decent showing vs. the divisional rivals at home in the Meadowlands.

Weather: The Meadowlands expects temperate weather on Sunday, with a high of 58 F and a low of 41 F - there is a 20% chance for precipitation. As long as the forecast holds up, it should be a nice day to play and watch pro football.

The official NFL injury report with Probable, Questionable, Doubtful and Out designations will be available by Saturday. Please refer to the week 8 injury report for the latest injury news regarding your players.


Philadelphia Eagles Passing Offense vs New York Giants Passing Defense (Neutral Matchup)

Donovan McNabb has been playing steadily productive football in recent weeks, with 53/92 for 689 passing yards, four TDs and zero interceptions (with 9/33/0 rushing) over his most recent three games. Last week, McNabb led his team to a big divisional win over Washington with 15/25 for 156 yards, one TD and zero interceptions, while understudy Michael Vick had 1/1 for five yards passing and 3/9/0 rushing in his time on the field. McNabb clearly remains the top option for the Eagles. The usual suspects handled most of McNabb's passes last week, with DeSean Jackson leading the team (2/69/1), followed by Jeremy Maclin (5/53/0), LeSean McCoy (5/30/0) and Brent Celek (3/8/0). The Eagles enter this divisional showdown at 4-2 and in position to grab a share of the NFC East lead.

The Giants' pass D has not been outstanding in recent weeks - they recovered (somewhat) from the 23/30 for 369 net yards, four TDs and zero interceptions allowed to Drew Brees two weeks ago and held Kurt Warner to 20/36 for 216 net yards, one TD and one interception lat week - but the Giants still lost 17-24. They've given up 728 net passing yards in the last four games (182 per game), but that number is skewed by the shellacking of Oakland three weeks ago. One thing the Giants have done well in recent weeks is compile sacks, with 14 to their credit in the last four weeks (four games) - the only have one interception during that span, though. The Giants' pass D is vulnerable entering week eight, friends.

The Eagles have many options in this phase of the game, while the Giants are struggling to get back to top form vs. opposing passers - this looks like a neutral matchup to us.

Weather: Lincoln Financial Field expects a high of 58 F with a low of 41 F and a 10% chance for rain on Sunday - that's pretty decent weather for Philadelphia in November. Weather conditions shouldn't play a big role in deciding this game as long as the forecast holds up.

The official NFL injury report with Probable, Questionable, Doubtful and Out designations will be available by Saturday. Please refer to the week 8 injury report for the latest injury news regarding your players.


San Diego Chargers Passing Offense vs Oakland Raiders Passing Defense (Neutral Matchup)

Philip Rivers played well enough to earn a 'W' over the Raiders in week one, with 24/36 for 252 yards, one TD and one interception (leading to a 24-20 victory). The usual suspects, Antonio Gates (9 targets for 5/83/0) and Vincent Jackson (7 for 5/56/1), led the team in receiving during the contest. Since then, Rivers has been a boon to his fantasy owners, currently ranking sixth among fantasy QBs in points per game to date (126/213 for 1787 yards, 10 TDs and three interceptions thrown to date) and sixth among all fantasy QBs over the past four weeks (59/99 for 796 yards, seven TDs and zero interceptions thrown). Antonio Gates has led the team in targets during the most recent three games (past four weeks), with 27 for 19/249/2 receiving; Vincent Jackson is second on the team with 23 for 13/244/2 receiving to his credit. Chris Chambers has been targeted 30 times this season, but he has only eight receptions to date, and he dropped an easy TD last week (among many flubs on the ball) - Chambers was unable to haul in a single pass last week among his four targets and appears to be falling out of favor - he might be riding the pine soon, folks.

The Raiders' pass D stands at 12th in the NFL currently, with an average of 207.4 net yards allowed per game. They have coughed up seven passing TDs vs. just four interceptions to date, but Oakland has managed 16 sacks so far (tied for eighth in the NFL in this category). Rookie Mark Sanchez touched them for 9/15 yielding 131 net yards and one TD with zero interceptions last week - Donovan McNabb could only manage 22/46 for 216 net yards, zero TDs and zero interceptions two weeks ago. If there is a bright spot on this team for the San Diego faithful, the play of the pass defense is it.

Rivers is playing at a high level entering week eight, but the Raiders' D won't just lay down for their divisional rival - this looks like a fairly even matchup from where we're sitting.

Weather: Qualcomm Stadium expects a beautiful Southern California day on Sunday, with a high of 79 F and a low of 56 F with a 0% chance for rain. It should be a great day to play (and watch) pro football.

The official NFL injury report with Probable, Questionable, Doubtful and Out designations will be available by Saturday. Please refer to the week 8 injury report for the latest injury news regarding your players.


Arizona Cardinals Passing Offense vs Carolina Panthers Passing Defense (Tough Matchup)

Kurt Warner is the 19th-ranked fantasy QB over the last four weeks (3 games), with an average of 19.4 fantasy points scored per game (78/115 for 809 yards, five TDs and two interceptions thrown during that span of time). His #1B receiver, Anquan Boldin, is trying to play through a high ankle sprain but was obviously hobbled by the injury last week - he just didn't have his usual burst of acceleration or his top speed, and couldn't separate from the Giants' DBs. Even at less-than-full-strength, though, Boldin still grabbed 3/75/0 out of seven targets. As usual, Larry Fitzgerald led the team in receiving (13 targets for 6/83/0 receiving), while Steve Breaston was third on the team with two targets for 1/23/0). Boldin owners will want to keep an eye on his practice status this week as he continues to rehab that sore ankle. At the end of the game vs. New York, Warner could boast of 20/36 for 231 yards, one TD and one interception.

The Panther's pass D has been stout over the past four weeks, with a mere 359 net yards allowed - they've amassed 11 sacks, two fumble recoveries and one interception during that span of time. Ryan Fitzpatrick was held to 11/22 for 114 net yards, one TD and zero interceptions last week; Josh Johnson managed 11/17 for 121 yards, zero TDs and one interception vs. Carolina two weeks ago. To date this year, the Panthers' pass D is #1 in the NFL averaging just 149.7 net yards allowed per game, though they do have seven passing TDs allowed vs. just three interceptions. If only their offense would stop turning over the ball 3 or more times a game, this team might go places.

Warner has been pretty ho-hum of late, and one of his best targets is not at 100%. The Panthers' D is not the team's problem this year (especially in the second quarter of the season when they've come on strong) - this looks like a tough matchup for the home team, friends.

Weather: University of Phoenix Stadium expects a high of 83 F with a low of 53 F and a 0% chance of rain on Sunday - that's nice enough weather that the roof may be opened up, though if bad weather threatens they'll button up before game time.

The official NFL injury report with Probable, Questionable, Doubtful and Out designations will be available by Saturday. Please refer to the week 8 injury report for the latest injury news regarding your players.


Atlanta Falcons Passing Offense at New Orleans Saints Passing Defense (Tough Matchup)

This is a huge NFC South game, between the only contenders for the divisional title. Matt Ryan comes into this contest off and up-and-down contest vs. Dallas in which the Falcons jumped out to an early lead, but then foundered under the weight of turnovers and several short offensive series. All told, Ryan threw for 19/35 for 198 yards, two TDs and two interceptions last week, hooking up with Roddy White for 6/50/1; Tony Gonzalez for 4/37/0; and Eric Weems for 2/33/1. Brian Finneran and Michael Jenkins both hauled in 2/22/0 during the contest. Over the last four weeks, Ryan has thrown 60/100 for 712 yards, six TDs and five interceptions, with 6/17/1 rushing thrown in - he's the 13th best fantasy QB in average points per game. White is a hot WR right now, with 18/316/4 to his credit during the same time span (third best fantasy WR).

The Saints' pass D frustrated Chad Henne and company to the tune of 18/37 for 197 net yards, zero TDs and two interceptions last week and won 46-34. Two weeks ago they held Eli Manning and the first-string Giants to 14/31 for 178 yards, one TD and one interception during their 48-27 dismantling of New York. To date, the Saints are the 14th ranked pass D in terms of yards allowed (214.3 on average), but they are tied for fist in the NFL with 13 interceptions and have only handed over five passing TDs in six contests. They are tied for 16th in the NFL with 14 sacks generated to date, while Atlanta is tied for 2nd in the NFL with only six sacks allowed (although Arizona racked up four sacks last week on the Falcons).

Ryan and company are playing at a high, but not elite, level entering week eight, while the Saints are playing very tough pass D right now. With the noisy Superdome crowd at the Saints' back on Monday Night Football, this looks like a tough matchup for the visiting Falcons.

Weather: Inside the Louisiana Superdome, weather conditions won't play a role in determining this divisional grudge match.

The official NFL injury report with Probable, Questionable, Doubtful and Out designations will be available by Saturday. Please refer to the week 8 injury report for the latest injury news regarding your players.


Baltimore Ravens Passing Offense vs Denver Broncos Passing Defense (Tough Matchup)

Both Baltimore and Denver come into this game off bye weeks, so each team should be close to 100% healthy and well-prepared for each other in this critical AFC matchup. Joe Flacco has been competent and productive in his three most recent games, with 77/121 for 835 yards, five TDs and three interceptions thrown (15th-ranked fantasy QB in points per game during the past four weeks). He ably carved up Minnesota before the break in the schedule, with 28/43 for 385 yards, two TDs and zero interceptions to his credit - Ray Rice led all receivers with 11 targets for 10/117/0, while Derrick Mason (12 for 7/97/1) and Mark Clayton (8 for 3/57/1) handled the TDs. Todd Heap caught all three passes that came his way (3/51/0) and Kelly Washington also had three receptions (5 for 3/48/0). The Ravens' offense is on fire, folks - it's their defensive failures that have led to two straight losses.

The Broncos field the league's 8th ranked pass D, currently averaging 182.8 net yards allowed per game, but they've given up a miserly three passing scores through six contests, with six interceptions and 21 sacks generated (tied for 2nd in the NFL in the latter category). They are by far the top team in the NFL when it comes to points allowed, with a mere 66 total points given up through 6 games (11 per contest, on average). Philip Rivers managed 20/33 for 238 net yards two weeks ago (with one TD and zero interceptions), and even Tom Brady was held to a relatively-modest 19/33 for 209 net yards, two TDs and zero interceptions back in week five. Even the elite QBs are kept in check by the Broncos.

Flacco and the Ravens' offense is going strong, but they have a tough challenge ahead of them when the puissant Broncos' defense comes to visit M and T Bank Stadium.

Weather: M and T Bank Stadium expects temperate weather on Sunday, with a high of 60 F and a low of 44 F with a 10% chance of rain. As long as this forecast holds up, conditions shouldn't have a big impact on the game.

The official NFL injury report with Probable, Questionable, Doubtful and Out designations will be available by Saturday. Please refer to the week 8 injury report for the latest injury news regarding your players.


Carolina Panthers Passing Offense at Arizona Cardinals Passing Defense (Tough Matchup)

Jake Delhomme has been awful all year. He's currently 34th among all fantasy QBs in average fantasy points per game (that's right, he's behind some of the backups in this league, like Alex Smith and Kyle Boller). He's thrown 106/177 yielding 1172 yards, a mere 4 TDs and a totally unacceptable 13 interceptions this year. Top WR Steve Smith doesn't have a TD catch yet, six games into the season (27/358/0, 37th fantasy WR in the land to date). 'The way I feel today is the way I felt after the last game," Smith said after the game on Sunday. 'I'm not excited about it. You want to win and you want to be involved. We still didn't win, so I'm not happy about it.' As Delhomme put it after his most recent debacle against Buffalo (27/44 for 325 yards, zero TDs and three interceptions) 'Let's be honest - I don't think I'm a dummy - when you're not playing well offensively, you always have to look at the quarterback... I'm certainly not looking to give it up by any stretch of the imagination. But let's be real here. Two big turnovers today really affected us.' Delhomme is definitely on thin ice as the starter in Carolina - if they had any sort of proven backup there, he'd probably already be riding the pine, but Matt Moore and recently-signed A.J. Feely don't represent big upgrades over Delhomme (although they may get a look-see soon as it would be hard to play worse than Delhomme has this year). At mid-week, rumors are circulating in Charlotte that Moore (69/122 for 793 yards, three TDs and five interceptions since joining Carolina in 2007) may get in the game this week, but head coach John Fox reiterated on Wednesday, Oct. 28th that Delhomme remains the starting QB because he gives the team 'the best chance to win.' How long Delhomme remains the starter remains to be seen, though - he'll have to perform better early in this game to avoid sitting on the bench.

Arizona has given up 705 net passing yards in their last three games (235 per contest), but they've also hauled in five interceptions and generated eight sacks during that time frame. Delhomme has thrown six interceptions during his past three games - uh oh, Carolina fans. Arizona is tied for eigth in the NFL with 16 sacks this year - Carolina is tied for 15th-most allowed, with 15 handed over to date. To date, the Cardinals are 29th in the NFL averaging 257.7 net yards allowed per game in this phase, but they've tightened up ship during the second quarter of the season. Eli Manning couldn't do much against these guys, with 19/37 for 220 net yards, one TD and three interceptions thrown in the 24-17 Arizona victory on Sunday night football.

The Arizona pass D is becoming respectable of late - the Panthers' passing attack is pretty far from decent. That means that Delhomme is probably in for another tough day on Sunday - advantage, Arizona.

Weather: University of Phoenix Stadium expects a high of 83 F with a low of 53 F and a 0% chance of rain on Sunday - that's nice enough weather that the roof may be opened up, though if bad weather threatens they'll button up before game time.

The official NFL injury report with Probable, Questionable, Doubtful and Out designations will be available by Saturday. Please refer to the week 8 injury report for the latest injury news regarding your players.


Cleveland Browns Passing Offense at Chicago Bears Passing Defense (Tough Matchup)

How tough has the sledding been for the Cleveland offense this season? Well, the Browns have scored four offensive touchdowns in over 80 possessions to date. The Browns have played four games without a touchdown this year, and against the Packers last week, the Browns converted two of 12 third downs. In the two weeks previous, the Browns converted 5 out of 13 (vs. Pittsburgh) and 4 out of 16 third downs (vs. Buffalo). Last week, Mohamed Massaquoi, the new #1 WR in Cleveland, caught one of the eight targets he saw, gaining 22 yards. His counterpart, Brian Robiskie, didn't make a single catch (five targets). All told, Derek Anderson targeted four wide receivers 17 times - and only three balls became receptions. Massaquoi commented afterwards: 'But at the same time, they [the Browns] brought us in, both of us [he and Robiskie], to make plays. We have to grow up fast. We have to take some of the pressure off the running game and go out and contribute.' Anderson threw for 12/29 for 99 yards, zero TDs and one interception vs. Green Bay; 9/24 for 122 yards, one TD and one interception vs. Pittsburgh; and 2/17 for 23 yards, zero TDs and one interception vs. Buffalo in week five (somehow, the Browns won that game!). As you can see, fantasy points are pretty sparse in these parts, folks.

The Bears' pass D is currently tied for 16th in the NFL averaging 220.3 net yards allowed per game. They have coughed up 11 passing TDs vs. just five interceptions generated during that time frame, though - they are tied for 16th in the NFL with 14 sacks to their credit. As you can see, they are a mediocre bunch by most yardsticks. Last week, the secondary was humiliated by Carson Palmer for 20/24 for 233 net yards, five TDs and zero interceptions. Ouch - every team has nightmare games at some point during the season. Chicago isn't usually that bad.

The Cleveland passing game is struggling mightily - look for the reeling Bears' D to bounce back in this game. Advantage, Chicago.

Weather: Soldier Field expects nice weather (for Chicago in November) - a high of 49 F and a low of 40 F with a 20% chance for precipitation. If the forecast holds up, weather conditions shouldn't play a big role in determining the outcome of this game.

The official NFL injury report with Probable, Questionable, Doubtful and Out designations will be available by Saturday. Please refer to the week 8 injury report for the latest injury news regarding your players.


Houston Texans Passing Offense at Buffalo Bills Passing Defense (Tough Matchup)

Matt Schaub is the fifth-ranked fantasy QB over the last four weeks in points per game, with 94/142 for 1251 yards, nine TDs and three interceptions to his credit during that time span. However, his number one receiver Andre Johnson was hospitalized during week seven due to a bruised lung suffered in the game vs. San Francisco. He will undergo tests each day this week to determine his status for Week 8, so pay attention to Footballguys.com's players in the news later in the week - obviously, the Texans' passing game isn't as good if Johnson is held out of the game this week. Owen Daniels had a monster game while carrying the load for Houston last week (9 targets for 7/123/1 receiving), and Kevin Walter caught all the balls that came his way (3 for 3/29/0) - Steve Slaton handled the second TD thrown by Schaub last week with 4/22/1 receiving on six targets. In all, Schaub threw for 20/30 for 264 yards, two TDs and zero interceptions last week.

The Buffalo pass D was under seige by Jake Delhomme last week (27/44 for 309 net yards), but they held up when it counted and didn't give up a TD while creating three interceptions. The Bills lead the league with 13 interceptions and are currently eighth with 16 sacks to their credit - they are a legitimate top-ten pass D averaging 190.4 net yards allowed per game, with only six passing TDs handed over to date. Mark Sanchez and the Jets crawled to 10/30 for 96 net yards, zero TDs and six interceptions vs. Buffalo two weeks ago. The ball-hawking secondary is making a difference for Buffalo, who have won two straight games.

Schaub is playing at a different level than Delhomme or Sanchez this year - we'll see if he can overcome the surging Bills this week. On balance, this looks like a tough matchup. However, the Bills' D wil be tested strenuously this week, and Schaub is too hot to sit down right now.

Weather: Ralph Wilson Stadium expects a high of 59 F with a low of 48 F on Sunday - there is a 20% chance for precipitation that day. As long as the forecast holds up, it should be a nice day to play (or watch) some pro football.

The official NFL injury report with Probable, Questionable, Doubtful and Out designations will be available by Saturday. Please refer to the week 8 injury report for the latest injury news regarding your players.


Miami Dolphins Passing Offense at New York Jets Passing Defense (Tough Matchup)

Miami won the first matchup between these two teams in week five, 31-27, on a TD run by Ronnie Brown with six seconds left in the game - it was a see-saw, back-and-forth affair. Chad Henne played his best game of the season vs. the Jets, with 20/26 for 241 yards, two TDs and zero interceptions thrown. Ricky Williams (3/70/0), Tedd Ginn Jr. (2/57/1) and Anthony Fasano (4/38/1) were the main receivers during the contest. Last week, Henne struggled vs. the Saints' solid pass D, managing just 18/36 for 211 yards, zero TDs and two interceptions. Ted Ginn Jr. disappointed with a mere 2/16/0 receiving out of eight opportunities, while Brian Hartline (5 targets for 3/94/0) and Greg Camarillo (6 for 5/55/0) rolled up most of the available yards - Anthony Fasano was also in the mix with four targets for 3/21/0.

The Jets suppressed JaMarcus Russell (6/11 for 61 yards, zero TDs and two interceptions with a fumble lost) and Bruce Gradkowski (10/19 for 97 yards, zero TDs and zero interceptions) last week. They held the Buffalo QBs to 15/30 for 154 net yards, one TD and one interception two weeks ago - this team is pretty stout in the passing phase of the game. To date, New York averages 181.4 net yards allowed per game, with just four passing TDs given up to date vs. seven interceptions generated - they are light on sacks so far, with just eight to their credit (but Calvin Pace was put in a position to attack the opposing QB last week and responded with three sacks and a forced fumble vs. Oakland). Miami is in the middle of the NFL range with 15 sacks allowed to date (tied for 15th in the NFL).

Henne had good results the first time he saw the Jets, but they've come on strong in this phase of late and have home-field advantage at their backs this time - this looks like a tough matchup for the inconsistent youngster.

Weather: The Meadowlands expects temperate weather on Sunday, with a high of 58 F and a low of 41 F - there is a 20% chance for precipitation. As long as the forecast holds up, it should be a nice day to play and watch pro football.

The official NFL injury report with Probable, Questionable, Doubtful and Out designations will be available by Saturday. Please refer to the week 8 injury report for the latest injury news regarding your players.


Minnesota Vikings Passing Offense at Green Bay Packers Passing Defense (Tough Matchup)

Brett Favre had his first serving of vengeance on the Packers during week four, throwing for 24/31 for 271 yards, three TDs and zero interceptions in the Metrodome - Minnesota won 30-23. Bernard Berrian (10 targets for 6/75/1) and Sidney Rice (6 for 5/70/1) handled most of the yards and two TDs, while Visanthe Shiancoe grabbed the other TD (3 for 3/18/1). Since that victory, Rice has emerged as one of Favre's favorite targets, with 19/373/0 receiving over the past three games - he's been a big boost to owners in PPR leagues. Last week, Rice piled up 10/136/0 vs. Pittsburgh. Adrian Peterson (4/60/0), Percy Harvin (3/42/0) and Visanthe Shiancoe (4/27/0) all contributed to Favre's 34/51 for 334 yards, zero TDs and one interception outing vs. Pittsburgh - unfortunately, the single interception at 1:00 left in the fourth quarter sealed the win for Pittsburgh (17-27 loss for Minnesota).

The Packers have picked on two woeful teams since the first game against Minnesota, limiting Cleveland to 12/29 for 81 net yards, zero TDs and one interception, while Detroit staggered to 11/25 for 71 net yards, zero TDs and three interceptions two weeks ago. It's no wonder that Green Bay has given up only 423 net passing yards and 33 points in their last four games - Cleveland and Detroit combined for three points in the last two weeks. However, good teams are supposed to win the games in which they are favored - the Packers have certainly done that over the past two weeks. The Packers are fourth in the NFL averaging 174 net passing yards allowed per game, with nine pass TDs allowed balanced by eleven interceptions and 12 sacks so far this year.

Favre didn't have much trouble with the Packers in week four, but this week the vitriol of the Packers' faithful awaits him in Green Bay - and he's in for a tough time, according to our book.

Weather: Lambeau Field expects a high of 43 F and a low of 31 F with a 30% chance of precipitation on Sunday. If the weather is stormy at game time, the precipitation could fall as freezing cold rain, sleet, snow, or a mixture of all three. In such conditions, all phases of the game become more difficult - owners of Vikings or Packers will want to look at a shorter-term forecast before setting their lineups this week.

The official NFL injury report with Probable, Questionable, Doubtful and Out designations will be available by Saturday. Please refer to the week 8 injury report for the latest injury news regarding your players.


New York Giants Passing Offense at Philadelphia Eagles Passing Defense (Tough Matchup)

The Giants' passing attack has slowed to a crawl in recent weeks, with 19/37 for 243 yards, one TD and three interceptions thrown by Eli Manning last week (vs. Arizona's 29th-ranked pass D) and 14/31 for 178 yards, one TD and one interception thrown against New Orleans in the 27-48 loss two weeks ago. The big three receivers for the G-men remain Mario Manningham (17 targets for 8/97/1 during weeks six and seven); Steve Smith (16 targets for 8/113/0 during the same time span); and Hakeem Nicks (15 for 9/194/2). Manning has the tools to succeed, but his young receivers have to elevate their game if he's going to prevail in the tough divisional matchups (like this game).

The Eagles average 190.2 net passing yards allowed per game (ninth in the NFL), but have coughed up 10 passing TDs to balance against their 12 interceptions (third in the NFL) and 21 sacks generated (tied for second in the NFL). This team brings pressure to bear up front and in the secondary - which is a worry for Manning with his four interceptions during the last two games (the Giants are tied for fourth in the NFL with only eight sacks allowed to date). Philly gave up 29/43 for 246 net yards, two TDs and one interception to Jason Campbell last week, but a lot of those totals came during garbage time after the Eagles were up 27-7 late in the third quarter.

Manning and his compatriots on the passing offense have sputtered of late, while the Eagles are playing their usual, high-pressure, turnover-oriented ball games - advantage, Philadelphia.

Weather: Lincoln Financial Field expects a high of 58 F with a low of 41 F and a 10% chance for rain on Sunday - that's pretty decent weather for Philadelphia in November. Weather conditions shouldn't play a big role in deciding this game as long as the forecast holds up.

The official NFL injury report with Probable, Questionable, Doubtful and Out designations will be available by Saturday. Please refer to the week 8 injury report for the latest injury news regarding your players.


Oakland Raiders Passing Offense at San Diego Chargers Passing Defense (Tough Matchup)

JaMarcus Russell threw for a score and led the Raiders to within :18 of a win over San Diego in week one (they did lose 24-20, but it was a close game). Close game is not how you'd describe the Raiders' results of recent weeks - the wheels have come off the Raiders' offense, which has been completely ineffective most weeks (they were blanked last week by the Jets 38-0 and were embarrassed by the Giants in week five 44-7). Even in their win, vs. Philadelphia, the team only managed 13 points. The Oakland team has 20 points scored in the last three games. Russell was finally benched for ineffective play last week (6/11 for 61 yards, zero TDs and two interceptions) and replaced by Bruce Gradkowski (10/19 for 97 yards, zero TDs and zero interceptions) during the shut-out loss to the Jets. Russell fumbled the first snap from scrimmage, apparently due to not having the team in the proper formation for the play called - 'You wouldn't expect to have that kind of mental error on the first play of the game,' HC Tom Cable said in the aftermath of the embarrassing loss. The lead receiver for Oakland last week was Louis Murphy (10 targets for 4/58/0) - nobody else got over 30 yards receiving during the shut-out loss. Russell figures to start again this week, but it remains to be seen how long he'll stay in the game.

The Chargers' pass D is currently ranked 11th in the NFL averaging 194.7 net passing yards allowed per game, with nine passing TDs given up vs. seven interceptions generated (tied for seventh in the NFL). However, they aren't generating much pass pressure up front, with 11 sacks to date (tied for 26th in the NFL). Over the past four weeks, the Chargers have allowed 629 net passing yards (209.6 per contest), with a mere 11/26 for 82 net yards, one TD and three interceptions given away to the sad-sack Chiefs last week. Two weeks ago, Kyle Orton posted 20/29 for 227 net yards, two TDs and zero interceptions vs. San Diego - it's fair to say the unit has been up and down during the past few weeks.

Even a mediocre pass D like the Chargers' will present a stiff challenge to the Raiders - advantage, San Diego.

Weather: Qualcomm Stadium expects a beautiful Southern California day on Sunday, with a high of 79 F and a low of 56 F with a 0% chance for rain. It should be a great day to play (and watch) pro football.

The official NFL injury report with Probable, Questionable, Doubtful and Out designations will be available by Saturday. Please refer to the week 8 injury report for the latest injury news regarding your players.


San Francisco 49ers Passing Offense at Indianapolis Colts Passing Defense (Tough Matchup)

San Francisco officially made Alex Smith their starting QB this week, after he led the team to within three points of a come-back victory last week (21-24 loss to Houston). 'I've been out for two years now. I don't know if I was getting any hungrier,' Smith said. 'I've kind of been waiting. It's been frustrating and I've got a chance to get back out there and make the most of it.' It looks like the move back to Smith is permanent (barring injury) - coach Mike Singletary said on Tuesday 'We're not going to be a flavor-of-the-month kind of team.' Smith and Vernon Davis were an explosive combination vs. Houston - Smith threw for 15/22 for 206 yards, three TDs and one interception vs. the Texans (all the TDs came in the second half of the game), making a fantasy monster of Vernon Davis (11 targets for 7/93/3 last week). Josh Morgan (4 targets for 4/62/0) and Michael Crabtree (6 for 5/56/0) were the next-most-prolific receivers last week. Smith supplied a big spark to the offense - hopefully, he'll continue to fan the flames for the 49er's this week.

This week, though, the 49ers' passing offense faces a stern test in Lucas Oil Stadium. The Colts have given up just two passing TDs this year through six games, while averaging 179.8 net passing yards per game. Over the last four weeks (three games), the Colts have allowed 502 net yards passing (167.3 per contest) and a league-low 32 total points. Marc Bulger could only muster 14/26 for 117 yards, zero TDs and two interceptions last week; Kerry Collins and Vince Young posted 19/35 for 155 net yards, zero TDs and one interception vs. Indianapolis back in week five. It's hard to throw the ball effectively vs. the Colts, especially in deafening Lucas Oil Stadium.

This looks like a tough matchup for Smith and company.

Weather: Inside Lucas Oil Stadium, weather conditions won't impact the contest on Sunday.

The official NFL injury report with Probable, Questionable, Doubtful and Out designations will be available by Saturday. Please refer to the week 8 injury report for the latest injury news regarding your players.