Finally, we've made it to the fourth and final week of the 2017 NFL preseason. Our last warm-up for the 2017 regular season begins and ends on Thursday, when all 32 teams will take part in their final preseason contest.
Unlike Week 3 of the preseason, this week isn't about the starters getting their reps in. It isn't about getting into a rhythm for the regular season. It's all about the final roster battles.
Can Victor Cruz earn a spot on the Bears? Can Christian Hackenberg win the backup quarterback job in New York? Can seventh-round rookie Chris Carson continue his rise up the Seahawks' running back depth chart? Most importantly, can everyone just stay healthy for once -- please?
Below, you'll find all the information you need to tune in as the action unfolds this week. Let's get to it ...
Week 4 through streaming and TV
TV note: All preseason games will be shown on local TV, so check your local listings. Two games will be shown on national television. Those games will be highlighted below.
Streaming note: All Week 4 games that aren't nationally televised or available on local TV can be streamed online via NFL GamePass, which is available for $99.99. You can purchase it with a one-time payment or four installments. Also of note: You can sign up for a free trial and cancel at any point during that trial. Remember, by purchasing NFL GamePass, you'll be able to re-watch regular season games too.
Thursday, Aug. 31
Rams at Packers, 7 p.m. ET, NFL GamePass: It doesn't sound like Jared Goff will play, which means Goff will enter the regular season after a solid preseason in which he completed 75 percent of his passes, averaged 7.8 yards per attempt, and posted a 94.5 passer rating. Sean McVay would love for Goff to post somewhat similar numbers in the regular season. Don't expect to see Aaron Rodgers either. Rodgers has been his normal super-human self this preseason and doesn't need any more work.
Jaguars at Falcons, 7 p.m. ET, NFL GamePass: Blake Bortles was awarded the starting job, but it's not exactly clear why. Sure, he's younger than Chad Henne, but it's not like he went out and earned the job. After a horrific 2016 season, Bortles averaged 6.1 yards per attempt and posted an 81.2 passer rating in the preseason. Instead of keeping the competition open, the Jaguars handed Bortles the job and killed all the intrigue this game would've held. One positive: Dede Westbrook, a star of this preseason, is expected to play.
Bengals at Colts, 7 p.m. ET, NFL GamePass: Personally, I'm interested in watching AJ McCarron, because for some reason, the Bengals love him. In April, it was reported that the Bengals would only trade him for a first-round pick. Here's where it's worth pointing out that he has thrown 119 NFL passes since being drafted in 2014. So far this preseason, he's generated a 51.2 passer rating.
Eagles at Jets, 7 p.m. ET, NFL Network: This is all about Hackenberg. How will the second-year quarterback respond after losing the starting job to Josh McCown? According to Todd Bowles, the backup job is still up for grabs.
Lions at Bills, 7 p.m. ET, NFL GamePass: This might be a great opportunity for Bills fans to get an extended look at Nathan Peterman, the team's rookie developmental quarterback. With Tyrod Taylor and T.J. Yates both stuck in the concussion protocol, it'll likely be up to Peterman to quarterback the team. For the Lions, watch for Kenny Golladay to see if he can continue his rise to prominence as a potential Fantasy sleeper.
Giants at Patriots, 7:30 p.m. ET, NFL GamePass: A legendary Super Bowl rematch! Just kidding. After what happened to Julian Edelman last week, it's tough to see the Patriots playing anyone of importance, including Tom Brady of course. Still, it'll be interesting to watch Jimmy Garoppolo and Jacoby Brissett, two quarterbacks who would be trade chips in the future. For the Giants, keep an eye on Davis Webb, the team's developmental quarterback. The backup job is still available in New York.
Steelers at Panthers, 7:30 p.m. ET, NFL GamePass: Let's see if James Conner can build off his impressive debut. Considering Le'Veon Bell is yet to report to camp and has a history of injury issues, Conner might be an important player once the real games begin. On the other sideline, it'll be interesting to see how the Panthers handle Curtis Samuel. The rookie isn't in game shape, so he could benefit from extended snaps on the field.
Redskins at Buccaneers, 7:30 p.m. ET, NFL GamePass: Nobody will be under more pressure than Buccaneers rookie running back Jeremy McNichols. As ESPN's Jenna Laine reported Monday, McNichols needs a strong outing to survive final roster cuts. Last week, he was benched after just two plays.
Dolphins at Vikings, 8 p.m. ET, NFL GamePass: Latavius Murray signed with the Vikings this offseason to take over for Adrian Peterson. Now, it looks like he won't even win the starting job. Dalvin Cook appears to be first in line for the starting job instead. Murray made his debut last week and a strong outing in the finale could help him earn a larger role in the regular season.
Ravens at Saints, 8 p.m. ET, NFL GamePass: Another rookie running back is also stealing the show: Alvin Kamara. He's in a crowded backfield, but has probably forced the Saints to get him onto the field. There's no way Adrian Peterson or Mark Ingram play in the preseason finale, so hopeful Kamara gets more chances to run. For the Ravens, it'd be nice if Ryan Mallett could make them feel better about their quarterback situation behind the injured Joe Flacco. This preseason, Mallett has completed 56 percent of his passes, averaged 4.6 yards per attempt, and posted a 57.8 passer rating.
Browns at Bears, 8 p.m. ET, NFL GamePass: If the Bears are truly set on starting Mike Glennon (they shouldn't), they should let rookie Mitchell Trubisky get all the reps in this game. Trubisky's been brilliant so far this preseason and deserves starting consideration. And if the Bears won't consider that possibility, Trubisky deserves another chance to get valuable reps before he heads to the bench. The complete opposite happened in Cleveland, where the Browns have given the starting job to rookie DeShone Kizer. We'll see if Hue Jackson lets Kizer play in this one.
Texans at Cowboys, 8 p.m. ET, NFL GamePass: Originally scheduled to be held at NRG Stadium in Houston, the NFL decided to move the game a few hours north to Arlington due to the devastation that Hurricane Harvey is causing. This is the last chance the Cowboys have to get Ezekiel Elliott reps before his suspension begins, but it seems unlikely they'd risk an injury in the final preseason game. For the Texans, it's all about Deshaun Watson and getting him reps so that at some point this year he can take over for Tom Savage.
Titans at Chiefs, 8:30 p.m. ET, NFL GamePass: This is a fun one, namely because Patrick Mahomes will get the start for the Chiefs. Mahomes hasn't done enough to unseat Alex Smith, but that doesn't change how impressive he's been, going 25 of 38 for 207 yards, three touchdowns, and a 105.9 passer rating. Unfortunately, Titans rookie receiver Corey Davis isn't expected to play.
Cardinals at Broncos, 9 p.m. ET, NFL GamePass: Due to Paxton Lynch's sprained shoulder, which will force him to miss a couple of regular season games, the Broncos will need to keep three quarterbacks on their roster. That's great news for rookie Kyle Sloter, who is 16 of 20 for 193 yards and two touchdowns this preseason. Sloter should get some solid playing time in the finale. He's playing for his job.
Chargers at 49ers, 10 p.m. ET, NFL GamePass: More rookie quarterback fun! C.J. Beathard can't win the starting job, but he can continue to make us understand why the 49ers drafted him in the third round. In three preseason games, he's generated a 119.0 passer rating.
Seahawks at Raiders, 10 p.m. ET, NFL Network: It's only the preseason, but the Raiders would sure like to see some signs of life from their defense. After three preseason games, the Raiders have made opposing quarterbacks look like Joe Montana. Jared Goff even went 16 of 20 for 160 yards against them. The fourth preseason game probably won't feature Russell Wilson, but it'd nice for the Raiders to make Trevone Boykin look like ... Trevone Boykin. Meanwhile, look for Chris Carson to continue his remarkable preseason.