Week 1: Drew Brees (New Orleans Saints) vs Tom Brady (Tampa Bay Buccaneers)
The Tom Brady era is officially here for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers as they travel to New Orleans to face Drew Brees and the Saints. It is great that the NFL is giving us such a meaningful divisional matchup to start the year. The Saints will earn the win here as they open up the season at home and have more chemistry as a team. The Bucs are playing their first game with the GOAT and there will be an adjustment period for the team before they get into a rhythm.
Week 2: Deshaun Watson (Houston Texans) vs Lamar Jackson (Baltimore Ravens)
The Houston Texans’ first two weeks will be extremely difficult as they start the year on the road against the defending Super Bowl Champions, then have a home opener against the reigning MVP Lamar Jackson. This game will be a fast-paced matchup as both quarterbacks have the ability to make clutch plays in extremely crucial situations. Baltimore will take the road win as their defense is too much to handle and the Texans won’t be able to stop the running attack of the Ravens.
Week 3: Lamar Jackson (Baltimore Ravens) vs Patrick Mahomes (Kansas City Chiefs)
The MVP matchup in primetime. Everyone will be watching as this will be THE game of the week. The defending Super Bowl Champions Kansas City Chiefs led by Patrick Mahomes are traveling east to face MVP Lamar Jackson and the Baltimore Ravens. This game will get so much marketing and attention, as it should. Both of these teams will be competing at a high level and this game could very well go down to the wire in Baltimore.
Week 4: Dak Prescott (Dallas Cowboys) vs Baker Mayfield (Cleveland Browns)
Baker Mayfield has a lot to prove this season if he wants to remain the guy in Cleveland. He can show a lot if he beats ‘America’s Team’ in their stadium. Dak Prescott needs to have another big season as well to prove he is more deserving of the annual dollar amount he is requesting. Both of these guys have a lot to prove this season and both of their offenses are primed to help them, so expect this to be a high scoring matchup in the big D.
Week 5: Ben Roethlisberger (Pittsburgh Steelers) vs Carson Wentz (Philadelphia Eagles)
By Week Five a lot of teams are figuring out who they are. Some teams start hot and others not so much. This game will be a big matchup in Pittsburgh as both teams are hoping to win their divisions. Carson Wentz and Big Ben play a similar style of game—standing tall in the pocket, keeping plays alive, and making unreal throws down the field. Both defenses have a good pass rush and a rebuilt secondary that will be doing their part to disrupt the opposing quarterback. Expect a lot of wild plays and great throws in this matchup.
Week 6: Tom Brady (Tampa Bay Buccaneers) vs Aaron Rodgers (Green Bay Packers)
The Green Bay Packers and Aaron Rodgers make their way to Tampa Bay to face Tom Brady and his array of offensive weapons. It would be a huge surprise to see either quarterback throw an interception this game as they both are known for taking care of the ball and putting points on the board. The game will come down to who makes fewer mistakes as a team and it would not be a surprise if this were a shoot out.
Week 7: Kyler Murray (Arizona Cardinals) vs Russell Wilson (Seattle Seahawks)
These divisional matchups are going to be fun to watch next season as the Arizona Cardinals offense has added DeAndre Hopkins and the Seattle Seahawks receiving corps makes a highlight play every week. It will be interesting to see how Murray has developed this far into year two as the starting guy. Russell Wilson is most likely being discussed as an MVP candidate once again at this point in the year. This should be the game of the week as well in Arizona.
Week 8: Carson Wentz (Philadelphia Eagles) vs Dak Prescott (Dallas Cowboys)
The first big match up for these division rivals is taking place in Philadelphia for Sunday Night Football. That atmosphere will be electric that evening and we are going to be watching another close game between these teams. If the offense is going well, we could see Carson Wentz have a monster game with his speedy receivers. The same can be said for Dak with his multiple weapons that include Ezekiel Elliott in the pass and run game.
Week 9: Jimmy Garoppolo (San Francisco 49ers) vs Aaron Rodgers (Green Bay Packers)
The NFC Championship rematch takes place this week on Thursday Night Football. Jimmy G was not needed much in their last matchup, but hopefully, that is not the case as the Green Bay Packers will be ready for the run game this time. Aaron Rodgers will be playing this season with a redemption mentality, so expect this game to mean even more to him.
Week 10: Drew Brees (New Orleans Saints) vs Jimmy Garoppolo (San Francisco 49ers)
Jimmy Garoppolo and the San Francisco 49ers now travel across the country to face Drew Brees. This will be a schematic matchup as both these head coaches will try to out scheme each other. The defensive matchup will be fun as well with both teams having a pass rush that can disrupt either quarterback. This could be a deciding factor in playoff rankings, so expect emotions to be high and a higher level of competition in both teams.
Week 11: Phillip Rivers (Indianapolis Colts) vs Aaron Rodgers (Green Bay Packers)
Phillip Rivers and the Indianapolis Colts are probably having a good year at this point and doing well in the AFC playoff rankings. Aaron Rodgers has had several big matchups through the first 11 weeks and this one is no different. Expect big plays and a close game that goes all the way down to the wire with both of these guys having that clutch factor.
Week 12: Tom Brady (Tampa Bay Buccaneers) vs Patrick Mahomes (Kansas City Chiefs)
The Kansas City Chiefs will be traveling down to Tampa Bay late in the season to face Tom Brady and the Buccaneers. At this point in the year, the Bucs are most likely clicking on all cylinders with Tom Brady and might even be on a winning streak before this game as they are a week away from the bye. An aging Tom Brady, in week 12, without a bye yet. Could that be the difference that helps the Chiefs get their first win in Tampa Bay this year?
Week 13: Lamar Jackson (Baltimore Ravens) vs Dak Prescott (Dallas Cowboys)
Coming into a short week for both teams will be the difference this late into the year as the Cowboys travel to Baltimore. This will be a great game late in the season as they are both most likely pushing for a higher ranking with the playoffs nearing. The different offensive game plans will make this game an enjoyable one on Thursday night with the Cowboys going to an air raid offense and the Ravens pounding the rock.
Week 14: Carson Wentz (Philadelphia Eagles) vs Drew Brees (New Orleans Saints)
Drew Brees and the New Orleans Saints who are used to the warm weather and a dome are heading to a cold Philadelphia in December to face the Eagles. The Eagles thrive in this weather and their revamped offense that has plenty of speed, which could be the difference-maker. Drew Brees is older, but playing in a cold game, late in the year will be a factor that cannot be ignored. This game could be holding two MVP candidates with Wentz and Brees leading their teams to another successful season. This game will come down to the wire and the winning team will most likely be the one who has the ball last, to lead a comeback victory.
Week 15: Drew Brees (New Orleans Saints) vs Patrick Mahomes (Kansas City Chiefs)
This could be a Super Bowl preview with the Kansas City Chiefs traveling down to New Orleans. Both of these teams are sure to have big seasons with their star quarterbacks and the great supporting cast they each have. Andy Reid and Sean Payton are going to have their work cut out for them as both offenses have the ability to score quickly.
Week 16: Ben Roethlisberger (Pittsburgh Steelers) vs Phillip Rivers (Indianapolis Colts)
This may be the last time we see the two future Hall of Fame quarterbacks play each other, let alone play a big game depending on how their seasons go. These guys have been at the top of their profession throughout their careers and this game could be the shoot out to end it in stylish fashion. This is a must match game in week 16.
Week 17: Jimmy Garoppolo (San Francisco 49ers) vs Russell Wilson (Seattle Seahawks)
If this season comes down to the wire for NFC rankings like it did last year, we are in for one hell of a game. They could very well be playing for the division title and a bye week in the playoffs once again. All eyes will be on the NFC West with these guys going at it to end the season.