After a bit of time away, we are back for the 2014 NFL Schedule Breakdown & we pick up at week 7 of the season. Now that the NFL Draft is completed, we have a better idea of the rosters & matchups for the upcoming season. After last weekend, games that weren’t exactly the top of our watching list have now become must see television all of a sudden.
Which is a great thing for the NFL. Here are the games to look at for Week 7.
New Orleans Saints @ Detroit Lions – 1:00 p.m, FOX
After the Detroit Lions picked up tight End Eric Ebron from North Carolina, the expectations for making a deep run in the NFL playoffs are higher than ever. The fans of the area are expecting for Detroit Lions QB Matthew Stafford to take the next step to becoming one of the true elite players in the league & have one of the best offenses in the game.
An area that many fans were expecting the Lions to go after is cornerback, which the depth of the team’s group will be tested in this game against Drew Brees & the New Orleans Saints, who boast one of the most prolific offenses in the NFL, & have for the last 7-8 seasons. The Saints bring in all of their weapons from a year ago, minus Darren Sproles, who signed with the Philadelphia Eagles earlier in the offseason.
This could end up being the most entertaining game of the day as both teams are suspect defensively & both can score with the best in the league.
Don’t be surprised if this game is moved from 1:00 p.m. to a more lucrative time slot depending on the flex scheduling options.
Cleveland Browns @ Jacksonville Jaguars – 1:oo p.m – CBS
Yes, we will be keeping our eye on this game, but not because we feel as though the Jacksonville Jaguars & Cleveland Browns will be great by any stretch, but this would be a premier matchup of young rookie quarterbacks in Johnny Manziel & Blake Bortles.
The Browns & Jaguars both needed a fresh restart to their franchises & did very much to address those needs in the NFL Draft. For the Browns, aside from drafting Manziel, the team drafted CB Justin Gilbert from Oklahoma State, a bonafide lockdown cornerback, & with a newly resigned Joe Hayden patroling the opposite side of the field, the Browns have a pass defense that is very formidable for opposing teams.
The Jaguars bolstered their offense by drafting not only Bortles, but also Marquise Lee from USC & Allen Robinson from Penn State. Both of those receivers will basically replace Justin Blackmon, who has not been a contributor to the team since he was drafted in 2011 because of substance problems & being suspended by the NFL numerous times.
This game may not be the game of the day, but in terms of seeing the future of the league, it may be the type of game people will watch years from now to see what the new stars of the NFL played like early on in their careers.
Cincinnati Bengals @ Indianapolis Colts – 1:00 p.m, CBS
This game is one of the top games in the 1:00 p.m. slot for CBS. The Cincinnati Bengals are showing faith in Andy Dalton by building around him the right way on offense & defense, but in the NFL Draft, the team brought in A.J. McCarron from Alabama, who is the winningest quarterback in the history of the Alabama program & if Dalton falters a bit, Bengals Head Coach Marvin Lewis will show no hesitation in bringing in McCarron, who won 2 National Championships & 36 games under Nick Saban at Alabama.
The Indianapolis Colts are growing steadily just as Andrew Luck is growing. The team had a great playoff run in 2013, but this game will be a true measuring stick for what the Colts will be this season. The Colts have a solid team all the way around, but the team will be looking for another wide receiver that can complement T.Y. Hilton, especially after the ACL injury to an aging Reggie Wayne last season. The organization may have found it in WR Donte Moncrief, a second-round draft pick from Ole Miss.
San Francisco 49ers @ Denver Broncos – Sunday Night Football – 8:30, NBC
This will be a game that I can assure you will not be flexed out unless a catastrophe happens. The San Francisco 49ers & Denver Broncos will have one of the better games of the season, & not really because the game will mean a ton in terms of either team is elite because we know both are SuperBowl contenders, but the key matchup will be whether Peyton Manning can handle seeing another top level defense from the NFC West, has he did with the Seattle Seahawks in the SuperBowl & earlier in the season.
For the first time in many years, there is a true blueprint on how to get Manning & the world saw it at the SuperBowl. The Seahawks & 49ers both have the talent to stifle Manning & the Broncos squad, but the team has reloaded on the offensive side of the ball & if the 49ers don’t have their star linebacker helping Patrick Willis in Navarro Bowman, that could add a bit of an extra storyline to this big time Sunday Night game.