We’re approaching the one-third mark into the season and the one factor I can say for sure is that I do not know what’s occurring this 12 months. I do know I say that each week, however I’m going to maintain saying it till it’s now not true.
Every thing nonetheless feels up for grabs at a time we will usually have some pretty sturdy feeling on how the season is shaping up. There are such a lot of groups underperforming expectations, and others doing vastly higher than we imagined — and that’s all rolling collectively to create large unpredictability.
Right here’s what I wish to discover out in Week 5:
No. 1: Can City Meyer survive this week?
It’s been an absolute mess for the Jaguars off the sector due to City Meyer, and it’s solely getting worse. There are studies he’s misplaced the locker room, and now Jacksonville has a brutal divisional recreation in opposition to the Titans.
Extra vital than profitable this recreation is taking inventory of how they carry out. Bear in mind the Titans look weak this season, they usually’re simply coming off a loss to the Jets. That makes Week 5 the most effective time to get an precise sense for what the City Meyer period in Jacksonville is.
I imply, if Zach Wilson can battle together with the Jets and beat Tennessee, then the Jaguars get blown out, what does it say? The Jets are a equally dangerous group, additionally taking lumps with a rookie QB, and led by a first-year coach. The expectation ought to completely be that the Jags can play the Titans shut, and in the event that they don’t, effectively, I truthfully don’t understand how lengthy it’ll be earlier than the plug is pulled.
No. 2: Can the Rams bounce again from adversity?
Los Angeles had their asses handed to them by the Cardinals simply as everybody was getting on the Rams hype wagon. Now they face the Seahawks on quick relaxation in a divisional recreation that has large ramifications for each groups.
The NFC West is a minefield and everyone seems to be gifted. The Rams have to get again on observe and show their dangerous loss was a hiccup they’ll transfer previous, quite than getting misplaced within the second and struggling to return again. In the meantime the Seahawks wants a win to maintain up within the race, so there’s every part to play for.
It has been pretty easy crusing for the Rams up till final week, so their demeanor on Thursday night time is every part.
No. 3: Are the Panthers able to show they weren’t a fluke?
Beginning the season 3-0, the Panthers had a sobering expertise as they confronted the Cowboys and misplaced. It ended up being a reasonably shut recreation, but it surely was clear Dallas had their quantity. Now, going from taking part in dangerous groups to Dallas was like turning the dial as much as 11 instantly, however Week 5 in opposition to the Eagles is a unique story.
Carolina appears to be going all-in this 12 months, making daring trades like buying Stephon Gilmore and there appears to be an inside perception they’ll make a run. That doesn’t occur if they’ll’t beat gifted, however middling groups just like the Eagles.
A loss to Philly would present this was a paper tiger to start out the season. A convincing win might push them again within the dialog as a group to observe.
No. 4: Can the Bengals shock everybody?
The stunning Cincinnati Bengals are at 3-1 and atop the AFC North, when most would have thought of them the worst group within the division. They’ve been quietly getting the job achieved whereas the main focus has been on different groups, now they should show they’re a official menace.
That received’t be straightforward in opposition to the Packers, who’ve moved previous their Week 1 catastrophe and look as dominant as they did a 12 months in the past. Inexperienced Bay is the right form of assertion recreation for Joe Burrow and firm to show they’re legit this season, and a win might actually imply taking a look at them nearer as a group that would win the division.
No. 5: Can Justin Fields shine?
It’s going to be a tough Week 5 for the Bears in opposition to a Raiders group seeking to bounce again following a crushing loss to the Chargers. Nevertheless, that is the form of good recreation for a rookie like Fields to interrupt out and achieve some confidence.
Las Vegas is an unbelievable group offensively, however their protection has been very suspect. This may put the strain on Chicago’s protection to carry out, whereas permitting their rookie QB loads of alternative to make performs and show to everybody why he was a prime prospect.
It doesn’t matter what occurs it’ll be too early to put in writing off Fields, however a giant recreation will work wonders in giving him one thing to construct off.
No. 6: Can the Chiefs flip this round?
Kansas Metropolis followers will not be pleased with the Chiefs’ 2-2 begin to the season, placing them on the backside of the AFC West — however there’s an unwavering perception this group will put it collectively and return to dominance. That can’t occur with no win in opposition to Buffalo.
That is a type of video games you’d have circled earlier than the season as one to observe, but in addition an okay place to perhaps drop one in case you’re a Chiefs fan. The one downside: You seemingly thought the group can be 4-0 proper now after video games in opposition to the Browns, Ravens, Chargers and Eagles.
Kansas Metropolis gave up two video games which ought to have been wins, that means they should carry out in opposition to a lot better opponents. If the Chiefs lose they merely dig this gap deeper, and in some unspecified time in the future all of the fan religion on this planet received’t be sufficient to drag themselves out.