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Senior NFL Columnist

Ten things from NFL Week 9 that intrigue me

Rex and Rob Ryan last met as opponents in the Cowboys-Jets 2011 season opener. (USATSI)
Rex and Rob Ryan last met as opponents in the Cowboys-Jets 2011 season opener. (USATSI)

Rob Ryan vs. Rex Ryan: Rob is the defensive coordinator of the Saints, and Rex is the head coach of the Jets. Both are known for their aggressive style. Rob has done a nice job improving the Saints defense and Rex is trying to save his job. It's bravado vs. bravado in this one.

Ravens OLB Terrell Suggs vs. Browns LT Joe Thomas: Suggs is having a nice season, a bounce-back following a disappointing season in 2012 after he tore his Achilles tendon. Thomas is one of the game's best pass blockers. Can he handle Suggs in those one-on-one situations?

How will Case Keenum play as the Texans' full-time starter: It's one thing to be an injury starter. Now it's Keenum's job. How does he respond? Can he save their season in a big game Sunday night against the Colts?

Jeff Fisher vs. his former team, the Titans: Fisher did a lot of good things with the Titans, including coming close to winning a Super Bowl. Now he gets to face his former team with a banged-up Rams team on a short week. The Titans are coming off a bye.

Can Eagles QB Nick Foles bounce back?: With Michael Vick out again with a hamstring injury, Foles is back in as the starter. He missed last week's game with a concussion. Foles really struggled in his previous start two weeks ago, and the Raiders defense isn't a pushover.

Cowboys WR Dez Bryant vs. Vikings secondary: Bryant had that high-profile sideline screaming match last week when the Cowboys blew a late lead at Detroit. So a lot of eyes will be on him this week. He should be able to show off for them against a Vikings secondary that isn't very good.

Rams DEs Robert Quinn, Chris Long vs. Titans OTs Michael Roos, David Stewart: I love games where good pass-rushing ends are matched against good tackles. Quinn and Long both had three sacks Monday night against Seattle and will provide a heck of a challenge for the two Titans tackles.

Bucs CB Darrelle Revis vs. Seahawks CB Richard Sherman: Yeah, they don't face each other, but after their year of getting into it with each other, it will be interesting to see who plays better. Is it Sherman, the young rising player? Or Revis, who is trying to regain his old form?

Can Cam Newton keep rolling?: Newton has the Panthers in prime playoff contention with three consecutive victories. The Panthers have struggled against the Falcons, but this is a hurting Atlanta team. Newton seems so much more comfortable now in this offense, and it will show here.

Will Tom Brady come out of his funk?: The Steelers have a solid defense, but I can't imagine Brady staying down the way he is for long. He is too good. It's time he gets more outside in the deep passing game. He will have shots this week.


Pete Prisco has covered the NFL for three decades, including working as a beat reporter in Jacksonville for the Jaguars. He hosted his own radio show for seven years, and is the self-anointed star of CBS Sports' show, Eye on Football. When he's not watching game tape, you can find Pete on Twitter or dreaming of an Arizona State national title in football.
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