Highlighting the Key Games in Week One

The 3 biggest NFL games this weekend

9/5/13 in NFL   |   Andrew_Ericksen   |   230 respect

Aug 29, 2013; Denver, CO, USA; Denver Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning (18) before the preseason game against the Arizona Cardinals at Sports Authority Field. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY SportsThe football gods were kind to us in their week one scheduling.  Thursday night kicks of the season in excellent fashion, while Sunday features a promising array of matchups as well.
 
The NFC East will instantly go head to head with inner-division play: Giants at Dallas Sunday night and Philly in Washington for part one of Monday night’s festivities.  Then there’s a battle of potential playoff teams in Chicago with the Bears and Bengals while the NFL’s two most talented offensive weapons - Adrian Peterson and Calvin Johnson - are on display in Mo-town.
 
All in all, the NFL’s back in a big way, and here are the 3 matchups you should make sure to focus on in week one:
 
3. Atlanta at New Orleans
Sunday, 1:00 PM EST
 
Last year was a fluke for the Saints.  Drew Brees knows it.  Sean Payton knows it.  And the Atlanta Falcons better know it too, because after starting 2012 off with 4 straight losses, you better bet the Saints are prepared to defend their home turf against the 2012 NFC South Champs.
 
Matt Ryan made some major strides in 2012, none of which more important than his first career playoff victory against the Seattle Seahawks.  After a nearly monumental collapse, Ryan rallied his troops for one last drive with 30 seconds left, connecting with Hugh Douglas for 22 yards and Tony Gonzalez for 19 yards to set up Matt Bryant for the game-winning field goal.
 
This year, Ryan is joined by star running back Steven Jackson and expectations are as high as ever in Atlanta.
 
Expect a shootout from two of the top offenses in the NFC, probably the entire NFL.
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