Week 9 of the NFL schedule is chock full of potential blowouts, and that means it should be a favorable week for quarterbacks looking to lead their teams to victory.
The quarterbacks in line for big games on Sunday aren't necessarily the names that show up on lists like this one every week. Sure, a few signal-callers are always constants on such predictions, but this week is rare. So many quarterbacks have an opportunity to shine.
Week 9 should be full of lopsided affairs. For those who love offensive juggernauts, it's probably a good idea to watch these quarterbacks make easy work of lackluster defenses.
Drew Brees is the obvious quarterback here. He seems to rip apart every defense he faces, and he should post especially good numbers this week against the New York Jets.
The Jets boast the NFL's strongest run defense, so the New Orleans Saints may be forced to lean on the passing game even more than they already do. The Jets allow 237.1 yards per game through the air (15th in the NFL), and Brees' ability to carve up the toughest defense makes him a candidate to go off in Week 9.
Throw in the potential lack of a run game, and Brees has a recipe for success.
In four career games against the Jets, he has a 2-2 record with 798 passing yards, three touchdowns and a completion percentage of 61.95. While those numbers aren't fantastic, his season marks of 2,290 yards, 19 touchdowns and 67.5 completion percentage are.
Look for him to throw around 400 yards through the air with a few touchdowns along the way.
Philip Rivers is in for a huge game this week against the Washington Redskins.
Washington ranks 27th in the NFL against the pass, allowing opposing quarterbacks to rack up 273.7 yards per game through the air. Couple that with Rivers' league-leading 73.9 completion percentage, and he's primed to put on a passing clinic.
He has benefited this year from breakout performances by rookie wideout Keenan Allen and running back Danny Woodhead in the flat. Woodhead has already tied his career high with 40 receptions for 314 yards and three touchdowns, as he has also profited from being a member of the San Diego Chargers.
Having him in the flat helps to keep Rivers composed when things go wrong. Rivers used to be infamous for forcing throws downfield into tight coverage when nothing developed over the middle, which resulted in a high number of interceptions or tipped passes.
Now, he can easily check down to Woodhead and rely on him to pick up tough yards after the catch. Expect to see a lot of that on Sunday.
Cam Newton has come into his own in recent weeks, leading the Carolina Panthers to four straight blowout victories against subpar teams. They face another lackluster team in the Atlanta Falcons in Week 9, and that means big things for Newton and his wide receivers.
He has been strong through the air, totaling 12 touchdowns and just five interceptions through seven games. He's on pace for a career-high 64.9 completion percentage and also for a career high in touchdowns.
The key for Newton in dismantling the Falcons defense will be his progress on the ground. He averages just less than 33 yards per game on the ground, but if he picks his spots against Atlanta, he'll easily surpass that.
I expect at least one passing and one rushing touchdown from Newton against an Atlanta defense that allows 363.7 yards per game.