Here are the essential facts about week 8 in the NFL:
GAME OF THE WEEK: There are a bunch of noteworthy games on Sunday – Patriots vs. Rams in London (a geographic selection which never fails to confuse me) and the return of Joe Vitt as Interim Head Coach to the Saints in their night game in Denver – among them. But the big one to me is Giants at Cowboys: the classic NFC East battle. The Giants lost a shocker to the Cowboys on opening day of the season, but since then the roles have been reversed. The Cowboys have been frustratingly terrible and the Giants are coming off of multiple big wins in a row. However, you can never predict what will happen in a match up between these two teams. But you can predict the need for snacks ( see below) and a clearing of your schedule between 4:30 – 7:30pm.
PLAYER TO WATCH: Cam Newton. He came under quite a bit of fire this week for his downtrodden demeanor – both on the field and off – as it pertains to the Panthers losing streak. As many commentators have been wise to point out, this is the first time he’s actually lost and taken heat for it…ever. He’s always been on winning teams or been praised for his efforts. So he deserves a little time to adjust, but should probably speed up the process a bit to quiet the media and encourage his teammates.
(I find it ironic that he’s facing another QB famous for demeanor issues this week: Jay Cutler.)
STORYLINE TO KNOW: The unbeaten Falcons visit the floundering Eagles. Two big things to note here: 1. The Eagles are 13-0 under Andy Reid after the bye week. And this is the game after their bye week (excellent timing). 2. The Eagles fired their defensive coordinator, Juan Castillo, before the bye week, so there will be some first-time on-field adjustments to be made under a new coordinator, Todd Bowles. The Eagles are also playing at home, and the Falcons have not been overwhelmingly successful against the Eagles in the past.
So, all signs point to an Eagles victory. Which probably means the Falcons will win.
RECIPES TO MAKE:
(It’s halfway through the season…so let’s keep it healthy this week. Pace ourselves in preparation for the next 8 weeks.)