Momentum is a huge part of the NFL. Offenses feed off momentum, while defenses look to it to cause turnovers. A sack is a vital momentum killer for offenses, while defenses that manage multiple sacks are often on the better side of the result at the end of the game.
Here are a few teams that could be in trouble and struggle to keep their quarterbacks upright this week.
Tarvaris Jackson was sacked five times against the San Francisco 49ers last week.
This week, the Seahawks travel to Pittsburgh to face the Steelers. The Steelers couldn't get to Joe Flacco last week as LaMarr Woodley had the team's only sack.
This week, Woodley and his teammate James Harrison will be out to prove themselves all over again as the best pass rushing tandem in the league. This spells trouble for Jackson, as the Seahawks don't figure to be able to run the ball consistently, either.
San Francisco 49ers
The San Francisco 49ers have talent on their offensive line, but struggled to protect their QBs during the preseason.
Last week, they kept Alex Smith's jersey clean. However, facing off against the Seattle Seahawks and the Dallas Cowboys are two totally different propositions.
DeMarcus Ware was disruptive against the New York Jets and should have a huge game this week.
He is the most difficult player to block in the league and is almost guaranteed a sack every time he gets on the field. Ware has a tough matchup with Joe Staley, but Rob Ryan will deploy him all over the field.
St. Louis Rams
The Rams will likely be without Steven Jackson against the New York Giants next Monday night.
Despite giving up five sacks last week, the Rams' offensive line is very talented. However, if Jason Smith struggles like he did against the Eagles, Justin Tuck alone could match that number this week.
Without Jackson, the Giants will be expecting the Rams to put the offense on Sam Bradford's shoulders, which will allow them to pin their ears back in pursuit.
Even if Justin Tuck doesn't overcome his neck injury, the Giants have enough talent upfront to get to Bradford. The Rams will need Carnell Williams to have a huge game.