NFL Preseason 2014: How to Watch 3rd Week of Exhibition Schedule

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NFL Preseason 2014: How to Watch 3rd Week of Exhibition Schedule
Mark Duncan/Associated Press

There are already six games from Week 3 of the NFL preseason in the books. Another 10 are on tap for the weekend.

The time is drawing close to when the games will count. Until then, football fans will have to scratch their itch for meaningful gridiron action with these games.

Saturday, August 23 Time (ET) TV Location
Tampa Bay at Buffalo 4:30 p.m NFL Ralph Wilson Stadium
Dallas at Miami 7 p.m. Check Local Listings  Sun Life Stadium
Tennessee at Atlanta 7 p.m.  Check Local Listings  Georgia Dome
Washington at Baltimore 7:30 p.m.  Check Local Listings  M&T Bank Stadium
New Orleans at Indianapolis 8 p.m. CBS Lucas Oil Stadium
St. Louis at Cleveland 8 p.m.  Check Local Listings  FirstEnergy Stadium
Minnesota at Kansas City 8 p.m.  Check Local Listings  Arrowhead Stadium
Houston at Denver 9 p.m.  Check Local Listings  Sports Authority Field at Mile High
Sunday, August 24 Time (ET) TV Location
San Diego at San Francisco 4 p.m. FOX Levi's Stadium
Cincinnati at Arizona 8 p.m. NBC U of Phoenix Stadium

Traditionally, the third preseason game is the one that sees the starters from each team play the most snaps of all the exhibition games.

For that reason, there's an extra incentive to tune in. 

Here's one question to be answered for three of the more compelling games remaining on the Week 3 preseason slate.

 

Will Hoyer Shine Now That He's Been Named the Starter?

Mark Duncan/Associated Press

Cleveland Browns head coach Mike Pettine has elected to go with Brian Hoyer as his starting quarterback over rookie Johnny Manziel. It doesn't help that Pettine won't totally commit to Hoyer. During an interview on SiriusXM NFL Radio's The Opening Drive, (h/t ESPN.com), he claimed he's pondering a two-quarterback system.

This is probably not the most popular decision amongst Browns fans, but Hoyer can quiet the rumblings with a solid performance against the St. Louis Rams on Saturday. 

If he struggles, we'll find out just how short of a leash he's on with the media and fans. Pettine figures to allow Hoyer to get at least three starts during the regular season before he calls on the former Heisman Trophy winner.

If the Browns get off to an unexpectedly good start, it'll likely keep Manziel on the sidelines even longer.

 

Will Sammy Watkins Play, and If so, Can He and EJ Manuel Connect?

Vincent Pugliese/Associated Press

EJ Manuel and the Buffalo Bills' first-team offense has struggled mightily this preseason. The unit has yet to score a touchdown. After falling 19-16 to the Pittsburgh Steelers on August 16, the second-year quarterback showed his angst with the situation.

"Coming off the field, it was frustrating," Manuel told Tim Graham of The Buffalo News. "I’m not going to lie."

Manuel has struggled to connect with prized rookie receiver Sammy Watkins, and the two need to find some chemistry if Buffalo's offense is going to be the best it can be this season.

Watkins didn't play against the Steelers, and as of Thursday afternoon, he hadn't been cleared to play on Saturday.

If he does suit up, there should be some opportunities to find a rhythm underneath against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers' Tampa-2 scheme. We'll see if Manuel and Watkins can get on the same page.

 

Will Robert Griffin III Silence Critics With Strong Showing?

Richard Lipski/Associated Press

These days, Robert Griffin III has his share of critics. Via his Twitter account, RG3 had a message for the doubters:

While he has completed eight of 12 passes in two preseason games, he didn't take proper care of the ball against the Browns in Week 2.

RG3 lost a fumble and threw a pick, and he still hasn't helped the first-team offense find the end zone yet in the exhibition season. When Washington takes on the Baltimore Ravens on Saturday, Griffin III will need to have his best performance to keep the whispers of support for backup Kirk Cousins from becoming yells.

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