NFL Week 5: 10 Things You Must See
Week 4 saw the two out of the three unbeaten teams suffer their fist loss, leaving only the Kansas City Chiefs, who were on a bye, as the only unbeaten team.
There are still, however, three winless teams, some of whom may have a good shot at winning their first game this week.
Other highlights this week include: teams trying to gain momentum; a young quarterback making his first start; and a quarterback/wide receiver pairing that has been four years in the making.
Here are the 10 things you must see in the NFL this week.
The Bears vs. The Panthers
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The Bears' offensive line performance on Sunday night against the Giants was one of the worst in history, allowing nine sacks in the first half alone. Quarterback Jay Cutler did not help his situation, often holding on to the ball far too long when he was given any amount of time.
The good news for the Bears and their offensive line is that they will be facing the Carolina Panthers, who are near the bottom of the league when it comes to sacks, with only four on the season.
The Panthers will need a strong performance out of rookie quarterback Jimmy Clausen if they hope to put up points and get a win against the Bears' top-rated run defense.
Kevin Kolb Is Once Again the Eagles' Starting Quarterback
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After losing his starting job in Week 1 due to a concussion, Kevin Kolb will once again have a chance to be the starting quarterback for the Eagles, after Michael Vick sustained a rib injury in a loss to the Redskins.
Kolb did not look particularly sharp against the Redskins and will be going up against a 49ers team that is desperate for a win.
The 49ers are 0-4 after a last second loss to Atlanta, but are only two games behind the Rams, Seahawks, and Cardinals, none of whom look like they are deserving of a postseason bid.
Chiefs vs. Colts
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I can't imagine that anyone, when asked who would be the last undefeated team in the NFL, would guess that it would be the Kansas City Chiefs, but after beating the Chargers, Browns, and 49ers, the Chiefs are the only undefeated team in the NFL.
Coincidentally, the team they are playing this week was the last team to be defeated last year, the Indianapolis Colts. The Colts are 2-2 going into this week after losses to the Texans and Jaguars, but quarterback Peyton Manning is again playing at an MVP caliber level.
I'm a skeptic when it comes to the Chiefs' ability to be a legitimate contender, but a win on the road against the Colts would go a long way in changing my mind.
The Packers vs. The Redskins
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Coming off a big win against the Eagles, the Redskins will have another tough opponent in the Green Bay Packers, who come in with a 3-1 record.
Despite their 3-1 record, the Packers have been playing less than inspired football, racking up 18 penalties against the Bears and allowing the Lions' second-string quarterback, Shaun Hill, to throw for 331 yards.
Like the Packers, the 2-2 Redskins have not been playing mistake-free football, losing to both the Texans and the Rams, but they do have home field advantage this week, which could give them a slight edge in the matchup.
The Bills' Best Shot at a Win so Far This Season
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Ok, so this might not be a marquee matchup, but it may be one of the best chances the Bills have of winning a game this season thus far.
The Jaguars are coming off a win against the Colts, but they have been very inconsistent this year, as they have also been blown out by both the Chargers and the Eagles.
If the Bills' secondary can force quarterback David Garrard into making some mistakes, and they can run the ball successfully with Fred Jackson and C.J. Spiller, the Bills could get their first win of the season.
The Rams vs. The Lions
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Unlike the Bills, the Lions have played relatively well this season despite being 0-4. To their credit, the Lions have lost close games against a very tough schedule so far, playing all of their division rivals on the road, with their only home game so far being against the Eagles.
The Rams are 2-2 and tied for the lead in the NFC West, behind the play of Sam Bradford, who is looking like a Rookie of the Year candidate.
Both teams are playing at a higher level than they have in years, but I think the Lions will finally be able to pull out a win this weekend.
Titans vs Cowboys
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Dallas is a disappointing 1-2 on the season, and after an early bye week, they will be trying to maintain the momentum they had built up after beating the Texans in Week 3.
The Titans are 2-2 after losing to the Broncos on Sunday, and have at times looked like they could contend with the Colts and Texans in the NFC South.
If either team has any hope of making the playoffs, they must start playing at a higher, more consistent level.
The Giants vs. The Texans
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The Giants have been about as inconsistent as any team in the NFL, beating both the Bears and Panthers handily, yet getting blown out by both the Titans and Colts. This Week 5 matchup could be a barometer as to how good or bad the Giants actually are.
The Texans have looked very good against the Colts, Redskins, and Raiders, but failed one of their biggest tests, at home against the Dallas Cowboys.
The Giants defensive looked good against the Bears, holding them to only three points, but Houston's trio of Matt Schaub, Andre Johnson, and Arian Foster will be much more difficult to contain.
Undrafted Rookie Max Hall Gets the Start for the Cardinals
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The Cardinals made the decision to cut Matt Leinart before the season, feeling that quarterback Derek Anderson would give them a better chance of winning, but Anderson's play has not been any better than it was in Cleveland.
So, coach Ken Whisenhunt has decided to start undrafted free agent rookie Max Hall this Sunday. Hall, who played his college ball at BYU, beat out fellow rookie, and fifth-round pick, John Skelton, for the backup quarterback position during the preseason.
Even with the talent they have on the offensive side of the ball, the Cardinals, without a legitimate starting quarterback, could be looking at a rebuilding year.
Favre and Moss Together at Last
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The Vikings were desperate for a spark for their passing game, and they may have found it by trading for Randy Moss. Quarterback Brett Favre desperately wanted the Packers to trade for Moss before the 2007 season, and now will finally get his wish to throw the ball to him on the Vikings.
The Jets are probably the hottest team in football right now and should get All-Pro cornerback Darrelle Revis back just in time to once again face off against Moss.
Even with the addition of Moss, the Vikings will still have a difficult task to beat the Jets at home.