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article imageOp-Ed: NFL Games of the Week – Week 4

By Mike Rossi     Sep 25, 2014 in Sports
If you were confused by the events of Week 3, you are among friends here.
The 49ers lost on the road to the Arizona Cardinals...
...who — under the leadership of backup quarterback and NFL journeyman Drew Stanton — managed to put 17 second-half points on the board while simultaneously shutting out the Niners for a 23-14 victory.
At 3-0, the Cardinals now lead the NFC West over both San Francisco (1-2) AND Seattle (2-1).
Meanwhile the Packers and Saints have completely underwhelmed through three games.
Neither Aaron Rodgers nor Drew Brees have successfully found their offensive rhythm this season and both of their respective teams are floundering mightily.
And how about that Oakland–New England game? The people of Poland have got to feel proud.
With the Cardinals and Bengals on a bye this week, two of the NFL’s three unbeaten teams will maintain their unblemished records heading into Week 5. Only the Eagles run the risk of earning their first loss though they’ll have the benefit of playing a masochistic 49ers team.
With that in mind, here are the games to watch heading into Week 4…
New York at Washington - 9/25 at 8:25 EST on CBS & NFL Network
Hey! New York won a game!
Following two embarrassing losses to kick-start their season, Tom Coughlin’s New York Giants capitalized on a three-interception performance from Houston quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick and put one in the win column.
Eli Manning looked halfway decent — maybe inspired by his brother’s near heroics in Seattle? — and managed to NOT throw an interception (crazy, right?), but the real star of that game was Giants running back Rashad Jennings who tallied almost 200 yards on the ground.
Eli Manning - YDS and TD by Year | FindTheBest
It will be interesting to see if the G-Men can maintain the momentum of last week against a Washington Redskins team that looked downright formidable during their slugfest with the Philadelphia Eagles.
RG III replacement Kirk Cousins put on an aerial clinic, throwing for 427 yards and 3 TDs in his shootout against opposing quarterback Nick Foles (325 yards and 3 TDs) and the Redskins as a
whole looked like an elite football team despite the three-point loss.
If the Skins can step onto FedEx Field with half of the intensity they brought to Philly last week, it’s going to be a loooooong game for the Giants.
Tune in on Thursday night to see which team will bounce back to .500 and which team will take on a very unappealing 1-3 start to the season.
Green Bay at Chicago - 9/28 at 1:00 EST on FOX
What can I say about Green Bay that hasn’t already been said by the media this week?
The Packers deserve to be 0-3 and if not for a comical collapse by the New York Jets during Week 2, they would be.
The offensive line has been porous.
The defense has struggled against the run and the pass.
Most concerning of all, all-pro quarterback Aaron Rodgers has looked nowhere near good. In fact, he’s toiled mightily just to look mediocre.
The Packers desperately need a win on the road this week to restore their confidence, but that win won’t come easily — they’re facing the hated Chicago Bears at Soldier Field.
For all the preseason question marks surrounding the offense and defense, the Bears have played well enough to warrant a 2-1 start.
Chicago has demonstrated an ability to move the ball successfully whether by Jay Cutler’s arm or Matt Forte’s legs and, looking past their Week 1 fiasco against the Bills, the defense led by Jared Allen and Lance Briggs has looked capable of being a Top 10 D.
Still, the Bears are a far cry from fearsome and will have their hands full with a Packer team that, though struggling, has more than enough skill to walk away from Soldier Field with a win.
This game will come down to two things: Aaron Rodgers and turnovers. If the Pack can hold onto the ball and if Rodgers can throw for 300 yards, Green Bay should come out on top.
Aaron Rodgers Completion % and YD/Game | FindTheBest
Tampa Bay at Pittsburgh - 9/28 at 1:00 EST on FOX
Tampa Bay sucks and the Steelers should roll to a victory. There is little else to say.
This is a game of the week for the sheer fact it will feature longtime and recently UNretired Steeler linebacker James — I’m the scariest man in the NFL — Harrison.
The Steelers called the former LB last week after a slew of injuries decimated their defense. Harrison was presumably awaiting the call in his hyperbaric chamber
Philadelphia at San Francisco - 9/28 at 4:25 EST on FOX
It will be interesting to see how the two former Pac-12 foes — Eagles coach Chip Kelly (Oregon) and 49ers coach Jim Harbaugh (Stanford) — prepare for their first NFL reunion this week,
particularly considering their two current teams are in drastically different situations.
As strange as it sounds, the 1-2 San Francisco 49ers don’t need a win as much as they need a quality second half performance free of turnovers, penalties and an absence of scoring.
During the 3rd and 4th quarters this season, the Niners have been:
—Outscored 52-3 .
—Flagged for 196 yards worth of penalties.
—Responsible for turning the ball over four times.
Gross.
Meanwhile the Philadelphia Eagles just keep on winning.
Following a near Week 1 catastrophe against Jacksonville, the birds have been duly impressive in their last two outings on the way to posting a 3-0 record.
Running back LeSean McCoy has gotten off to a slow start, but quarterback Nick Foles has picked up where he left off at the end of last season, racking up yards and touchdowns galore.
Offseason acquisition Darren Sproles has been impressive thus far in all of his appearances and the much maligned Philly D has been good enough, despite being nowhere near actually good.
Can the Eagles make it 4-0, or will the Niners get themselves back to .500?
Check out FOX on Sunday to find out.
San Francisco 49ers - NFC West Standings | FindTheBest
This opinion article was written by an independent writer. The opinions and views expressed herein are those of the author and are not necessarily intended to reflect those of DigitalJournal.com
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