Week 5 in the NFL hosts some interesting matchups, but I’m most looking forward to Denver traveling to Oakland to face the Raiders in an AFC West game.
The Broncos will enter the stadium undefeated this season, but the Raiders just might have what it takes to end the winning streak. The true test on the field will be how each quarterback handles himself against the opposing defense.
Led by veteran Von Miller, the Denver defense will carry its second-ranked team into a head-to-head duel with Oakland’s young and talented defense (13th overall).
These rankings seem distant in comparison, but Oakland linebacker Aldon Smith said he expects “quarterbacks will probably be getting hit.” The offense-driven matchup to watch this week is Seattle at Cincinnati.
Cincinnati seems to have found chemistry that is working well on all sides of the ball. Quarterback Andy Dalton has shown improvement in accuracy and precision since last season, and his primary target, A.J. Green, has more than 400 receiving yards receiving in just 4 games.
The defense has not allowed a single first-half touchdown all season. All of these factors have contributed to Cincinnati’s dominance at home and No. 1 overall ranking.
Russell Wilson will need Seattle’s offensive line to step up and protect him a little better this week. Jimmy Graham has been a weapon utilized in various ways by the Seahawks, but the Bengals shut him down last season and rendered him virtually useless for the Saints.
I predict the Bengals will remain undefeated after Sunday.
Other notable matchups are Chicago at Kansas City and San Francisco at New York Giants.
Jamal Charles is having a great season. Kansas City’s ground game will carry them to a victory over the Bears.
I anticipate that Eli Manning will carry his team to a victory over the Niners. who are still struggling to get their offense going.
*Editor’s note: This column was written before Sunday’s games