Week Three Preview

by Zack Cimini

Week three presents some great matchups, including on Monday night when the Raiders play the Broncos. It is also the first week that teams will have byes, and those teams are Philadelphia, Chicago, Dallas, and Carolina. The Jets, Cardinals, Chargers, Browns, Bengals, and Jaguars are all trying to avoid 0-3 starts. With their matchups though all six of them will probably fall to 0-3. Well here is a preview of each game this weekend.

New York Jets vs. New England
The Patriots bounced back very well against the Eagles, and Testaverde knows he is in trouble this week. Last week the Patriots sacked McNabb several times, and we know how hard it is to sack McNabb. Both teams have a very weak running game, except when the Patriots use Kevin Faulk. So it?ll likely come down to Tom Brady and Vinny Testaverde throwing the football.

Kansas City vs. Houston
Houston played tough against the Saints, but fell apart in the middle of the third quarter. This week they face a Chiefs team that is rolling, but the Chiefs better not overlook the Texans. Priest Holmes will likely only touch the football 10-15 times a game, so look for Tony Richardson and Larry Johnson to carry the load. If the Texans are going to have any chance to win this game, than they are going to need to keep the Chiefs offense off of the field. That means Stacey Mack will have to be effective.

Tampa Bay vs. Atlanta
Usually when these two teams get together, it turns into a great game. This one though could be a blow out in the Buccaneers favor, if the Falcons don?t bring their defense. One thing the Falcons have on their side is that they know the Buccaneers are going to throw the football. If the Falcons can play defense than this one will come down to the last seconds.

Pittsburgh vs. Cincinnati
Don?t be surprised to see the Bengals pull this one out. Their defense has played very well, and we all know that Tommy Maddox can?t go a game without making a couple of mistakes. Add to the fact that Jon Kitna has developed a very nice chemistry with his receivers, spells trouble for the Steelers.

Minnesota vs. Detroit
Week one Joey Harrington looked fabulous, and then he returned with a horrible outing against the Packers. Developing consistency is always a problem for young quarterbacks, but Harrington has the tools. The Lions should be able to spread the Vikings defense out now that they have Az Hakim back. The Vikings talented offense is just too much though, and in the end the Vikings should win comfortably.

New Orleans vs. Tennessee
The Titans had it put to them last week in Indianapolis, and now they come into this week a banged up team. The Saints finally played to their ability, and we?ll see if they can keep it up this week. When Steve McNair plays injured he seems to carry this team better, but he?ll need to get more effort out of Eddie George. As far as the Saints go, they?ll just need another great game from Deuce McAllister.

Jacksonville vs. Indianapolis
In only a year Tony Dungy has transformed the Colts into a defensive team. They look very impressive this way, and it has taken a lot of pressure off of Peyton Manning. Edgerrin James seems back to 100 percent, and the Colts look like they are ready to get back too the playoffs. The Jaguars look like they need a change, and Byron Leftwich seems to be the answer.

St. Louis vs. Seattle
The Seahawks enjoyed their first bye week against the Cardinals last week. All the Seahawks had to do was sit back and watch the Cardinals turn over the football. This week will be a little bit different, but their defense should cause some problems for Marc Bulger. Bulger showed last week that he has a hard time with blitzes, so expect the Seahawks to throw in plenty of blitz packages. We?ll see if Bulger can handle the pressure now that he knows he is the starter until he loses it.

NY Giants vs. Washington
Both of these teams like to light it up with their offenses, so this will be another classic shoot out. Wasn?t it just two years ago that the NFC East had some of the worst ineffective offenses in the league? You have to like the Giants in this game, just because of what happened to them on Monday Night. But Steve Spurrier has this team running and gunning on offense, so it should be a great game.

Green Bay vs. Arizona
People are already forgetting that Emmitt Smith is on the Cardinals. It is hard to remember when you?re on a team that can?t win more than four games in a season. This could be one of the games the Cardinals can win, especially if Favre has one of his erratic games. The key will be Ahman Green, who?ll likely have a huge day against the Cardinals defense.

Baltimore vs. San Diego
David Boston and Reche Caldwell are out, and the Chargers have yet to see LT have a great game. The Chargers defense isn?t helping out either, as it is one of the worst in the NFL. That means Jamal Lewis can add to his two game total and have a great shot at breaking OJ Simpson?s record.

Cleveland vs. San Francisco
I?d give Kelly Holcomb until halftime to do something on the field, or Tim Couch will be out there coming into the second half. Butch Davis can?t stand losing, and has always said Couch will get the chance if Holcomb folds. This game has a Terrell Owens day written all over it.

Buffalo vs. Miami
The Bills have a shot at separating themselves by two games from everyone in their division. They?ll need a little help from the Jets, but they can take care of the other half themselves. Drew Bledsoe has always played well against Miami, and won twice last year against them. This is a must win for the Dolphins, and they can ill afford to have stupid turnovers. The Bills feed off of turnovers and will capitalize on them. This is the game of the week.

Oakland vs. Denver
Steve Beurelein will likely start for Denver, but don?t expect that to affect the Broncos offense. Beurelein has been around for a while, and knows the system better than Jake Plummer. So if anything he adds more to the offense this week against the Raiders, but expect Clinton Portis to touch the ball 30-35 times. Oakland almost lost last week, and could be headed to 1-2 if they don?t start playing football.


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