2013 NFL Preseason: 5 Must-Watch Matchups of Week 2

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5 Must-Watch Matchups of 2013 NFL Preseason Week 2

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The first week of the NFL preseason has come and gone, and Week 2 is upon us today, starting with a trio of games at 4:30 p.m. PT.

Week 1 provided a number of interesting matchups to watch. Fans got to see the defending Super Bowl champions Baltimore Ravens rack up 44 points against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. The Oakland Raiders hosted the Dallas Cowboys as fans were treated to quite the show with one of the closest games of the week. There was even a shocker of a game in the Arizona Cardinals’ contest against the Green Bay Packers, in which the potent Packers offense was shut out 17-0.

Week two of the NFL preseason promises to be just as captivating. There are 16 games slated for the next five days, with two of them being nationally televised on ESPN. Fans will even be able to get the first Monday Night Football experience of the season as the Pittsburgh Steelers head to the nation’s capital to face off against the Washington Redskins. Redskins star Robert Griffin III is still recovering from injury, so it will be intriguing to see what the backups can do in his absence.

Another interesting matchup pits the Arizona Cardinals against the Cowboys. Tony Romo and the Boys will face off against a Cardinals squad whose quarterback position is more up in the air than the Redskins’, as Carson Palmer needs to assert himself into the starting lineup. Also, football fans everywhere look forward to seeing the infamous “Honey Badger” Tyrann Mathieu in action for the Arizona defense.

Although these and other games will be interesting, there are five matchups in Week 2 that NFL fans cannot miss. Enjoy the slideshow!

Isaac Comelli is a Los Angeles Dodgers writer for Follow him on Twitter @IsaacComelli, “Like” him on Facebook or follow him on Google.

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5. Vikings vs. Bills

Brace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sports

E.J. Manuel, the Buffalo Bills’ rookie quarterback, proved that he was a smart draft choice with an impressive first preseason game. Bills fans will be glued to the TV to see if Manuel can keep up his strong play in Week 2. The Minnesota Vikings are running with quarterback Christian Ponder, but most critics do not believe he is the long-term solution. Tune in to see if Ponder is looking better or if he may be replaced by one of the Vikings’ backups.

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4. Chargers vs. Bears

Rob Grabowski-US Presswire

The Chicago Bears have an interesting position battle on their offensive line. My fellow writer at Rant Sports, Ryan Heckman, does a great job explaining how the Bears’ rookies are dominating the offensive line. Fans should watch this game to see how well the young front line can hold back the San Diego Chargers' defensive unit. Fans will also need to tune in to see if Ryan Mathews, Danny Woodhead or Ronnie Brown can make their cases as the Chargers’ featured running back.

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3. 49ers vs. Chiefs

Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

There are so many interesting position battles involved in this game that it is impossible to name them all. One of the highlights of those competitions will be seeing if the San Francisco 49ers’ offseason acquisition Nnamdi Asomugha can prove himself worthy of a starting position in the defensive backfield. Also, Kansas City Chiefs running back Jamaal Charles suffered an injury scare this past week, so his presence in the game is questionable. Fans will want to tune in to see if he does indeed bounce back and play in Week 2 and see which back might be seeing more playing time if Charles is not healthy.

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2. Colts vs. Giants

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The headline story from the Indianapolis Colts’ matchup against the New York Giants is the return of running back Ahmad Bradshaw, who was signed by the Colts in the offseason after spending the last six seasons with the Giants. My fellow writer at Rant Sports, E.J. Mckinley, believes that Bradshaw will be an important focus for the Colts’ running game in this game, so it will be fun to watch him get to play against his old team. This game also features two of the best QBs in the game in Andrew Luck and Eli Manning. Even if the two only play for a series or two, getting a look at them before the season starts will be worth watching.

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1. Buccaneers vs. Patriots

Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

The Bucs are eager to see if Week 2 could see the return of Darrelle Revis from injury. Bucs fans are equally as anxious to see if Revis can find a new “Revis Island” near the Gulf Coast. On the other sideline, the New England Patriots will put their uncertain run game to the test against 2012's leading rush defense. My colleague at Rant Sports, Tyler Ash, did a great job of summarizing this interesting test for the Patriots’ running backs.

With the unexpected injury of Tom Brady, the Patriots’ backup quarterbacks will likely see much more playing time. As I said in my article, this could be a great opportunity for Tim Tebow and Ryan Mallett to prove to be a potential replacement if Brady is down for the count.

That does it for my list of five must-see games in NFL preseason Week 2. Please leave a comment below if you have something to say or are excited about seeing one of these games or another.