Senior NFL Columnist

Ten things that intrigue me about NFL Week 4

Matt Cassel will make his first start since Nov. 18, 2012. (USATSI)

Will Matt Cassel do enough against the Steelers to keep the job? -- With Christian Ponder out with a rib injury, the Vikings will turn to Cassel as their starting quarterback. Ponder didn't play well the first three weeks, so if Cassel does it would seem to be his chance to win the job. Really, though, is there much difference?

Eagles and Broncos trying to run as many plays as they can with their no-huddle offenses -- How fun will this one be? It features two teams that love to play fast on offense. That will be enjoyable to watch. How many plays can they get off between the two of them? How excited is Peyton Manning to face that Eagles defense?

Texans WR Andre Johnson vs. Seahawks CB Richard Sherman -- Johnson is bothered by a shin injury, but he is expected to play. He had a big game the first game, but then had a concussion followed by the shin injury. Sherman loves a challenge, and two weeks ago he took Anquan Boldin out of the game. Johnson will be a much tougher challenge in man coverage for Sherman. Funny thing is, Sherman talks and Johnson doesn't.

Mike Glennon as the starting quarterback for the Bucs against the Cardinals -- I don't like the move to go to Glennon, but it's always interesting to see a rookie passer make his first start. Glennon has limited mobility, so it will be interesting to see if the Bucs change some of their deep passing routes, even if he has a big arm.

Larry Fitzgerald vs. Darrelle Revis -- This is one of the best vs. one of the best. Revis has done a nice job coming back from his torn ACL, and I would expect him to be on Fitzgerald a lot. They faced each other once before in 2008, and Fitzgerald had over 100 yards receiving. It was clear last week that Fitzgerald wasn't 100-percent healthy. He's closer to that now. Should be fun.

Can the Giants line protect Eli Manning to try and save their season against a fierce Kansas City pass rush? -- The Giants gave up seven sacks last week to the Panthers, and this Kansas City pass rush is fierce. Justin Houston and gang should get after Eli Manning. The Giants will also be without guard Chris Snee and center David Baas, although Snee has been struggling. Can the Giants show improvement up front with their backups? If not, their season could be done early.

Ryan Tannehill on the road vs. that Saints defense in the Superdome -- Did Tannehill have his moment of arrival last week with his game-winning drive against the Falcons? Can it carry over against the Saints? New Orleans has been impressive on the defensive side so far, and they are tough to beat at home. In front of a prime-time audience, we will find out a lot about Tannehill.

Is Brian Hoyer a one-hit wonder or can he build to something? -- Hoyer did some really good things in beating the Vikings last week. But he also made some mistakes. It will be interesting to see how that carries over this week against the Bengals. If he plays well, it should be his job the rest of the way.

What does Falcons defensive coordinator Mike Nolan have in store for Tom Brady and his young receivers? -- Nolan did some really innovative things to slow down Peyton Manning last year in Week 2. I imagine he will have a lot of those same types of things for Brady. It's not that Brady won't be prepared, but it's his young receivers I worry about. Reading on the run might be complicated for them against this defense.

Does Jake Locker have any carryover from his impressive play last week? -- Locker had a nice game last week against San Diego, even if he did run too much. Now he gets to show he can build on it against a good Jets defense. Locker has been way too inconsistent in his career so far. This is a big week for him.

 
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