This may only be the 2nd time this season that Tom Brady isn't the top performing NFL QB of the week (the other was after his bye). Despite a few dropped passes, Drew Brees looked sharp in the Saints win...Brees threw for 3 TDs and ran for another in a big game for New Orleans. Kurt Warner threw 48 times for 484 yards against San Fran, but lost the game in OT on a sack in the endzone. Brett Favre looked as spry as ever on Sunday as he threw for nearly 400 yards with 3 TDs. The Eagles were thought to have no chance against the Patriots on SNF with a replacement QB (A.J. Feeley)...but Feeley was excellent and nearly pulled off the win against the undefeated Pats (stirring up a bit of a QB controversary upon Donovan McNabb's return). Carson Palmer was stellar for the Bengals while completing 32 of 38 and throwing 3 TDs to Chad Johnson. Peyton Manning tossed 3 TDs for the Colts in their win on Thanksgiving Day in Atlanta. Philip Rivers got things done for San Diego with 3 touchdown passes. The Broncos and QB Jay Cutler were ahead by 2 TDs with just a few minutes left in the game before losing in OT to the Chicago Bears. Tom Brady was a mere 34 for 54 for 380 yards and only 1 TD in the near defeat on SNF...putting just a bit of pressure upon himself for the passing TD record in '07 (although he should still have little problem achieving 50 TDs with 5 games remaining). Jason Campbell completed 60% of his passes for 300 yards.
Frank Gore finally has a good game in 2007...Gore put ups a whopping 214 all-purpose yards and 2 TDs just after many of his fantasy owners had given up on he and the Niners. No Larry Johnson!? No Priest Holmes!? Enter Kolby Smith!...Smith busted out for 150 rushing yards and 2 TDs for the fantasy owners fortunate enough to land (and start) Smith in week 12. In another similar story (although in Denver), it was Andre Hall with the nod...Hall replaced injured Travis Henry and Selvin Young with 167 yards and a TD against the Bears. Justin Fargas wasn't exactly a widely mentioned FFL name in preseason, but that didn't stop the Raiders RB from knocking down 157 yards and a score this week. Ryan Grant (notice a trend here with preseason unknowns?) had another solid game for the Packers as he rushed for over 100 yards and caught 6 passes from Favre in another dominating Green Bay win. Jamal Lewis is running like it's 2003...Lewis rushed for 134 and a TD on Sunday for the Browns. Kevin Jones put together 120 yards and a score for the Lions on T-Day. Fred Taylor had one of his better games this season for Jax with over 100 yards rushing. Marion Barber put up 100 rushing yards and a score at home on Thanksgiving Day. Steven Jackson seems to be fully recovered...SJax had 105 yards and a score against the Eagles. Brian Westbrook, Anthony Thomas, Chester Taylor, Rudi Johnson, Adrian Peterson (Bears), and Earnest Graham all had 80+ versatile yards and a score apiece for their NFL teams and fantasy owners. LaDainian Tomlinson nor Clinton Portis found the endzone, but each managed over 100 yards.
Almost exactly like last season, Chad Johnson waited until mid-season to have a huge 12 catch - 3 TD game to satisfy his patient fantasy owners. In similar fashion to CJ, Larry Fitzgerald chose week 12 to demonstrate his own talents with a 156 yard - 2 TD performance for the Cardinals. Greg Lewis hadn't caught much all season for the Eagles, but the change at quarterback (and while playing the Patriots on SNF) seemed to be the key as Lewis caught balls for 88 yards and 2 TDs. Greg Jennings caught 2 of Brett Favre's 3 TD passes. Roddy White scored a TD on 100+ receiving yards for the Falcons on Thursday Night against the Colts. Brandon Marshall appears like the real deal in Denver...Marshall caught 4 balls for 97 yards and a TD against the Bears. Plaxico Burress, Marques Colston, and Deion Branch all had 90+ yards and a score in week 12. Wes Welker and Donald Driver had very impressive catch and yardage totals, but each was somehow kept out of the endzone on a collective 23 catches for 296 yards between the two receivers. Jabar Gaffney, Calvin Johnson, and Sidney Rice all had 80+ yards and a score...but only Johnson is of any fantasy concern. With Marvin Harrison still ailing, rookie Anthony Gonzalez recovered from his own injury and played well in Harrison's absence...Gonzo didn't score, but did catch enough balls from Peyton Manning to surpass 100 receiving yards.
Once again, it's Antonio Gates edging Kellen Winslow in tight end performance...in one-two fashion and just the way the two TE studs rank in season totals. Both had nice catch totals with over 100 yards, but it was Gates whom scored 2 TDs compared to a sole TD for Winslow. Chris Cooley continued his success from week 11 and had another nice game this week (96 yards and a TD from Jason Campbell). Owen Daniels and Tony Scheffler each put up 82 yards and a TD. Jason Witten scored again for the Cowboys to the delight of his fantasy owners. Dallas Clark knocked his TD total up to 7 with a scoring grab for the Colts. Vernon Davis seems to be grooving with the Niners and had a nice 6-catch (with a score) game on Sunday from backup QB Trent Dilfer. Ben Utecht and Billy Miller each caught 4 and scored in week 12.
News and Notes - Ricky Williams played a few downs on MNF prior to leaving the contest with an injured shoulder...Did anyone see the sand-wedge looking punt on MNF in the slop?...With Larry Johnson out and Priest Holmes retired (official last week), Kolby Smith stepped in and performed perfectly - similar to the situations in Minnesota and Denver (with Chester Taylor replacing Adrian Peterson and Andre Hall replacing Travis Henry / Selvin Young)...Cedric Benson was injured against the Broncos and is done for the season - with the starting nod going to Adrian Peterson for the rest of the season (Peterson should do as well or better than Benson in the Chicago offense)...Adrian Peterson (Vikes) is set to return this week for Minnesota...Expect a bit of a QB debate upon the return of Donovan McNabb with the performance of A.J. Feeley on SNF...So which is more likely? - New England going undefeated or Miami going winless? - New England nearly lost on SNF and Miami nearly won on MNF (so it's anyone's guess)...No word yet on Travis Henry's appeal, but we should find out today (Tues)...Don't forget the NFL Network's game this Thursday! - Green Bay faces Dallas (in Dallas) in a matchup of 10-1 teams...Sadly, Sean Taylor (Redskins DB) passed away one day after suffering from a gunshot wound early Monday morning at his home
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