Every week the Full10Yards NFL gang will preview the games gracing our TV screens, giving you the lowdown on the big games each and every weekend. Make sure that you get involved in our “pick em” competition and check out our podcasts and other great articles too!
Sunday Early Sky Sports Game, 6.00pm
Rams @ Bills
A fascinating Cross-conference matchup between two teams that don’t often face each other. Two relatively healthy teams for this one with the Rams RBs looking to be OK for this week. The Rams currently are 3rd in terms of rushing yardage per game in the first two weeks (172) and they’ll face what has been a stout run defence so far though the Bills have faced the Jets and the Dolphins so a truer test of their abilities will come to pass on Sunday in Week 3. The Bills let the Dolphins hang around for most of the game before exerting their dominance in the 4th Quarter at Hard Rock Stadium whilst the Rams have been as comfortable as they would have wanted to be against 2 potentially tricky opponents.
At the Quarterback position, Josh Allen has gone against type thus far this season and leads the league in passing yards (729) and just the 75 rush yards to add on to that, wehave seen Josh Allen have both his first 300 yard and 400 yard passing games out of the gate.
Whether that was a planned diversion due to the 2 fumbles he lost in week 1 or whether it’s the shrewd addition of Stefon Diggs (who is tied with Calvin Ridley for most receiving yards through week 2 with 239) that has helped his QB and this offence remains to be seen.
He’ll have a tough test against a Rams defence that has only given up an average of 150 yards to WRs thus far and just a notch over 500 yards in general. The Rams can be had on the ground so you may see Josh Allen reverting to his legs in this one and despite an impressive win against Philadelphia last week, I think that was more of a opportunistic victory against a struggling injury-ridden team.
Expect Diggs to be followed by Jalen Ramsey quite closely in what is a fascinating matchup so this could be a John Brown game for fantasy owners. That being said, Amari Cooper and the Cowboys quietly had success against him when Ramsey allowed 9 receptions on 11 targets for 114 yards (0 TDs).
On the other side, Jared Goff is not depended on as much in this Rams offence and his playmakers have done plenty after the catch. Goff’s 8.78 Net Yards/attempt is the best in the NFL. His longest play to date though is 31 yards, which is bottom 5 in the NFL. With Sean McVay scheming up sorcery thus far, he’ll continue to find the ways to get this offence clicking and producing yards and points and giving Goff the best chances to succeed in that offence. Week 1 was the short passing and misdirection, screens, WR sweeps, where as in week 2, TE Tyler Higbee burst on to the scoresheet. All that intertwined with some solid rushing from their 3 Running Backs who have shared the 61 attempts thus far.
Writer’s Pick (@Tim_MonkF10Y)
I think Josh Allen gives the Bills the edge in this one purely because he can do it with both his arm and his legs. Jared Goff is no slow coach himself but he’s not asked to control the offence in the same way Josh Allen is.Expect no inches to be given easily in a tough battle in the trenches, but Bills to come out on top in a tight one. Prediction : Bills 20 Rams 17
Sunday Late Sky Sports Game, 9:25pm UK
Cowboys @ Seahawks
It’s not unreasonable to expect a humdinger between two of the NFC’s top contenders this Sunday. Having lost a close one to the LA Rams in Week 1, Dallas (1-1) pulled off an epic comeback against the Falcons, recovering from 15 points down with five minutes left to win 40-39, secured by a last-ditch FG from Greg Zuerlein.
Atlanta confirmed their status as the Kings of Choke by clutching another defeat from the jaws of victory, despite their opponents giving them every chance. With three lost fumbles, two botched fake punts and a failed (and unnecessary) two-point conversion attempt that left them needing two scores rather than one, the ‘Boys were a bag of unforced errors and odd calls from the sidelines. But with Dak Prescott throwing for 450 yards and a TD while rushing for three more, and a huge slice of good fortune when they recovered an onside Zuerlein kick at the end, it all came out in the wash.
As for the home side, they’re sitting at 2-0, having also seen off Atlanta (a more routine 38-25) before defeating the Patriots 35-30. MVP candidate Russell Wilson threw five TDs against the Pats – all to different receivers. DK Metcalf is the deep threat if his QB goes large. He corralled over 90 yards and a TD with just four catches, and if he can do that against Stephon Gilmore, watch out Dallas.
Wilson has completed 52 of 63 passes for 610 yards so far, with nearly as many touchdown passes (nine) as incomplete ones (11). But last week, Prescott was also cooking on gas. He threw the ball 47 times and completed over 72% of his passes. I say let CeeDee Lamb, Amari Cooper and Michael Gallup run free, especially if Cooper can replicate that amazing one-armed catch.
In contrast to their high-octane attacks, both defences have had their issues, conceding 114 points between them already. Matt Ryan threw for a league-high 450 yards against Seattle and Cam Newton logged 397, leaving the Seahawks dead last in total defence and 30th in yards per play allowed (the Cowboys rank 25th). They only have five sacks between them.
Despite the Seahawks’ defensive frailties, new safety Jamal Adams does give most running backs a headache. It should be interesting to see him up against Zeke Elliott, who racked up more than 120 total yards last weekend with 22 carries and six catches.
Writer’s Pick (@seantyleruk)
The early betting line has the over/under at 55.5, the highest points tally across the Week 3 schedule. That’s not surprising, given that Seattle ranks second with 36.5 points per game while Dallas lies second for total offence with 475 yards per game. Add a couple of leaky defences and you have yourselves the recipe for a shoot-out at CenturyLink Field, so the over is looking tempting.
It’s a hard one to call. Seattle are the 4.5-point favourites but the Cowboys could run them close, if they can put a stop to the self-inflicted wounds. That’s probably the difference between the teams at the moment so I’m backing Seattle to sneak it. Prediction: Seahawks 34 Cowboys 27.
Sunday Night Football – Monday 1:20am UK
Packers @ Saints
Who would have thought after just two weeks there are already some thoughts creeping into Saints fans minds that they may want to go into the garage and fire up the Winstonmobile, as QB Drew Brees has certainly not looked his old self. If you are pondering replacing a surefire Hall of Famer with the inaugural member of the 30:30 club then something isn’t clicking.
Saints Coach Sean Payton (former Leicester Panthers QB) had to suffer the team loss and a financial loss last week as one of a number of NFL head coaches flaunting the PPE wearing protocol on the sideline.
A MNF embarrassment against the Las Vegas Raiders, in the 188th venue to host an NFL game, was not on the cards, and it was obvious to anyone watching that Brees missed his superstar WR more than the desert misses the rain. New Orleans looked average on defense, and made Derek Carr in turn look like the much better passer on the day.
As this was going on the Green Bay Packers are getting praise heaped upon them like a child at an all-you-can-eat ice cream dispenser, and the cherry on top has been the stellar performance of RB Aaron Jones (pictured) with 312 total yards and 4 TDs in two games.
Green Bay are the only team to have scored over 80 points in the first two weeks (85) and are one of only 5 teams left undefeated in the NFC. We go back a year and the Packers again started strong (2-0) but after two games they had scored just 31 points.
The Saints (1-1) are being held together by RB Alvin Kamara, who unlike last season, is finding the end zone with relative ease, tying Aaron Jones with four combined touchdowns (three rushing and one receiving). Kamara has had to up his game with Micheal Thomas missing game time, and as a result he leads his team in targets (17), receptions (14), and yards (146).
The Saints defense are allowing over 28 points a game and looking vulnerable. Stud DE Cam Jordan is yet to have a sack, and the absence of 3rd year pass rusher Marcus Davenport is already showing. Stepping up is 4th year reserve DE Trey Hendrickson, with a sack in the first two games.
In the Saints secondary Marshon Lattimore (pictured) will continue to man mark opponents best WR, he has one pick so far and 9 tackles. If Davante Adams is fully fit he will be talking trash to Lattimore all night. On the flip side double Super Bowl winning S Malcolm Jenkins was badly abused on MNF last week by Derek Carr, especially when he was targeting man-beast that is TE Darren Waller.
You may be wondering why it has taken this long for Aaron Rodgers name to appear, it’s partly reflective of the way he is being not being talked about. His stat line of 6TDs and no INTs to start the season is impressive, but MVP talk (way too early MVP talk) is focusing on Russell Wilson and Kyler Murray.
Rodgers will relish an opportunity to notch up another 300+ yards against a Saints team that was exposed by the Raiders. The Saints will be hoping to get production from their lesser know WR corps, but Brees, who is starting to show his age (41) is failing to get the deep passing game going. He will look for the likes of Kamara in the backfield and TE Jared Cook on short to intermediate routes.
Maybe it’s time to strap on the walking boots and climb the Taysom Hill, and use him more than as a gadget play specialist and special teams ace.
Writer’s Pick (@F10YRetro)
The Saints are at home, and they have won the last two regular-season matchups between these NFC powerhouses (in 2014 and 2017). Don’t look for this to be three in a row by New Orleans, as there is no significant home crowd in the Superdome cheering on the home team, and the Aaron Brothers (not literal ones like the Watt’s) are currently hotter than when Megan Fox appeared for the first time on Two and Half Men (you know the episode). Packers to put over 30 on the Saints and win with effort to spare. Prediction: Packers 33-24 Saints.
Monday Night Football, Tuesday 12.10am UK
Chiefs @ Ravens
This is the big one folks. That regular season game that happens almost every season that should probably be the Superbowl (even though this one can never be a Superbowl matchup, sigh…).
- Baltimore vs Kansas City
- Jackson vs Mahomes
- Harbaugh vs Reid
These two teams are so dominant in the NFL right now that I have no idea what to expect. I do, however, know what I want. Fireworks. Drama, Tension. No look passes. Duking LBs. Travis Kelce fighting his way to the end zone. Marcus Peters picking off deep balls. Patrick Mahomes stepping back about 40 yards in the pocket just so he can throw the ball 70 yards in the air. This game has all the elements to be a classic. There is no wonder it has been scheduled for the Monday Night Football slot..
Both teams come into this game 2-0 but off the back of somewhat underwhelming victories over the Chargers and Texans respectively. The expectations of these two young QBs is evident when throwing for 302 yards and 204 yards and had passer ratings of 90.0 and 113.9 respectively. Whenever these two take to the field people expect such lofty heights that the weight upon their young shoulders is already immense. Mahomes is 2-0 vs Lamar Jackson, will he go 3-0 or will Lamar finally get his W?
I think where this game will be won and lost is on the ground. Baltimore have had incredible success in the running game after they put up 230 yards of rushing with 1 TD vs Houston from 37 rushes averaging 6.2 YPC. Whereas Clyde Edwards-Hilaire was unable to match his impressive week 1 outing after he averaged only 3.8 YPC with 10 attempts. The Ravens held David Johnson to only 3.0 YPC in week 2 showing how dominant their run defence has become. This is where the Chiefs could come undone after their defence allowed 183 yards of rushing vs Los Angeles Chargers in week 2.
Just like the run game, another area to watch will be in the trenches. The Ravens offensive line allowed 4 sacks and 5 QB hits in week 2, which is evidence that if Kansas City’s pass rush can get going, they can certainly get to Jackson. Flip that over and Mahomes was sacked only once, but with 7 QB hits. Both of these QBs are incredibly elusive and so disrupting their rhythm and putting them on the ground could be vital to halting their progress down the field.
The Ravens have won 14 straight regular season games. The Chiefs have won 8 straight. The two longest active streaks in the NFL. The last time two teams met both on 8+ win streaks was in 1969. This game feels like it could have points, lots of points. I expect Jackson to test the Kansas City defence early on and try a couple of designed runs. On the other hand Andy Reid will be all too aware of the potency of this Ravens defence, as they sit atop the tree having only allowed 22 points so far this season, the best in the league.
Writer’s Pick (@SteTough)
This is such a tasty one. I could see it going either way, however the Ravens’ defence edges it for me. A smart man once said, ‘Defence wins Championships!’ Prediction: Baltimore 33-27 Kansas City.
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