Four NFL Match Ups to Watch in Week One

Stephen AnglissAnalyst ISeptember 4, 2008

The time has finally arrived. No more training camp, no more mock drafts, no more preseason predictions, or season previews, just pure NFL football. All that happened last year is forgotten. 32 teams in the NFL are ready to start on a clean slate, and show the league that they are a force to be reckoned with.

All that was worked for during training camp will be put into action, and all the rookies that were drafted will be put to the test. Week 1 in the NFL is easily the most anticipated game in the regular season, and possibly the most critical. Every match up in Week 1 is important, but there are five games that cannot be missed.

Washington vs. New York:
The season opener between the Redskins and the Giants is a critical game in the fact that both teams desperately need to win to prove themselves from last year. The Redskins are looking to prove that Jim Zorn has turned them into a dominant force in just a couple months, while the Giants are out to prove that they are still the Superbowl champions that everyone saw last February.

It could possibly be even more critical for the Giants given the fact that they are being counted out after losing their three best players. The Redskins, however, must prove that they are better than last place in the NFC East by winning a convincing game.

For the Redskins, if they lose they will have an excuse of a new coach and offensive scheme, but if the Giants lose they will only confirm the predictions of not being the team to beat. All in all, it looks like this game will be close. Possibly too close to predict, but it will all come down to who wants it more.

Minnesota vs. Green Bay:
The Brett Favre saga will officially end when Green Bay's new quarterback, Aaron Rodgers, gets under center for the Packers. This will be the defining moment for all Green Bay fans, who want to find out if maybe they still have a starter for the record books.

Aaron Rodgers will have a long way to go to be considered along with F, but if he finds himself winning this week he will have a lot more friends in Green Bay. For Minnesota, they must prove that Adrian Peterson is still the best in the league and that missing the playoffs last year was just a fluke.

Expect to see the Vikings pull out on top only because of their defense, which will keep Rodgers from emerging this week.

Arizona vs. San Fransisco
What's interesting about this match up is that these two teams have a lot in common. They both were never as good as what they hoped for, and both had rookie quarterbacks who had high expectations but emerged as less than good. These two teams want to win badly.

So bad, that the 49ers hired the offensive genius, Mike Martz, and the Cardinals returned to the 38 year old veteran. I believe that Arizona has the slight edge only because of the experienced quarterback, but I see this game as being one to remember this week.

New York vs. Miami
What makes this game a must watch is what made the Green Bay/ Minnesota game a big game. Brett Favre is returning to football, only this team in a different shade of green, and will have many wondering eyes on him this weekend. He must play well to get this team started. The Jets season could be a great one, or a poor one.

It all hinges on how Favre will play. On the other side the Miami Dolphins will arrive as a new team. While they might not be Superbowl material, the Dolphins are no longer the 15-1 team that we saw last year. I will rate this match up as a surprise game because I believe that Miami will give the Jets something they don't expect and come out to win.

Week One is always an exiting game in football and will set the tone for the season. I'm sure that there will be many more surprises than what I mentioned, but these four games will be ones that can't be missed