In week 4 of the NFL season, long time rivalries are renewed and they make up the three best games of the week. The Baltimore Ravens at the Pittsburgh Steelers, the Washington Redskins at the Philadelphia Eagles and the New England Patriots at the Miami Dolphins.
Baltimore Ravens at Pittsburgh Steelers-
This game has all the makings of some good old fashioned smash-mouth football. The Steelers come into this game with the 3rd best running game in the NFL but the 32nd ranked passing offense. The Baltimore Ravens defense is ranked number one against the pass but only 22nd against the run. Expect to see a lot of Steelers RB Rashard Mendenhall as Charlie Batch tries to manage the game. For the Ravens, with RB Ray Rice a bit banged up, I expect to see Joe Flacco air it out to Anquan Boldin.
Washington Redskins at Philadelphia Eagles-
This game has all the storylines, Michael Vick as the Eagles starter and Donovan McNabb returning to the Linc for the first time as a Redskin. Michael Vick has been sensational for the Eagles as a starter, he has yet to throw an interception in 2 1/2 games. McNabb has been less than spectacular and has thrown only two touchdowns all season, yet he doesn’t have the offensive weapons that Vick has. It remains to be seen what kind of reception McNabb will receive when he walks out on the field, I’m guessing it will be a mixed greeting. You know McNabb would love to beat his former team but I just don’t see the Redskins having enough firepower to beat the Eagles.
New England Patriots at Miami Dolphins-
These two division rivals split their home and away series in 2009. The Dolphins acquired WR Brandon Marshall in the offseason and we’ll see Monday night if he can exploit the youth in the New England Patriots secondary. Statistically speaking, the Patriots defense is in the bottom third of the league and they are allowing 27 points a game. I envision this to be another hard fought game between these two and the game possibly coming down to a late field goal.