What games can you watch on free-to-air television this week? Check out our previews here.We’re two weeks into the 2013 NFL season, and what a fantastic two weeks it has been! From quarterbacks passing for record numbers to temperamental weather, this season is off to a crazy start. It only looks like it will get better, with a set of great games on Channel One to start your Monday morning. Don't forget to check out our TV Guide for all the games here.
Detroit Lions @ Washington RedskinsWhen and where: Monday September 23, FedEx Field, Maryland Coverage: LIVE on Channel One, 3:00 AM AEST The week is kicked off with the Detroit Lions (1-1) travelling to the US capital to take on the Washington Redskins (0-2). Detroit will be hoping to rebound from a tough loss to Arizona, while the Redskins will do anything it takes to get their first win on the board. The Lions were in a great position to run away with their game last week versus Arizona before their offence stalled in the second half. That stall seemed to coincide with dual threat RB Reggie Bush leaving the game with a knee injury late in the second quarter, so Detroit will need to have Bush, who is listed as questionable this week, back in the line up if they want to have any long-term success. Many seem to think the sky is falling in Washington, but that’s not the case. A Week 2 loss to a red hot Aaron Rodgers and the Green Bay Packers was hardly a surprise, and for all of the criticism Robert Griffin III is facing, he is still playing pretty decent football. Focus should be on the defence, which has allowed 71 points through two games, and will need to tighten up drastically if Washington want a shot at winning against the Lions this week. Watch out for: While he hasn’t been that bad this year, Robert Griffin 3 and his team are starting down the barrel of an 0-3 start. With that looming over his head, RG3 will explode out of the blocks this week, slinging the pigskin to all corners of the field. Final word and prediction: Detroit are undoubtedly a good football team, however the Redskins are on their home turf and are mad to get a win, and that will cause them to ride to victory. Washington win 31-24.
Indianapolis Colts @ San Francisco 49ersWhen and where: Monday September 23, Candlestick Park, California Coverage: LIVE on Channel One, 6:15 AM AEST The second game of the morning could be the game of the week, as Andrew Luck goes up against his college coach, Jim Harbaugh, for the first time, with the Indianapolis Colts (1-1) taking on the San Francisco 49ers (1-1) Indianapolis made headlines this week after agreeing to a highly unexpected trade that sent Cleveland Browns RB Trent Richardson to Indianapolis in exchange for a 2014 first round pick. The Colts got one of the most promising young running backs in the league here, and with Andrew Luck on the same team, the Colts’ offence will be a daunting task for any defence in the league to take on. Indianapolis’ defence still has some questions, but if Richardson is integrated into the team’s offence by this weekend, the Colts will be a tough team to take down. San Francisco were heralded as perhaps the best team in the NFL, before being thoroughly thumped 29-3 by the Seattle Seahawks in Week 2. QB Colin Kaepernick had the worst game of his career, as Seattle’s defence sacked him three times and forced him into throwing three interceptions. Despite the lopsided loss, San Francisco’s defence still played a pretty strong game, and will certainly be a tough opponent this week. The question is, how will Kaepernick respond? Watch out for: It might be an obvious choice, but Andrew Luck is the one to keep an eye on this week. He’s taking on his old coach and mentor, so this game will mean a lot to him. Expect him to make a statement. Final word and prediction: This game will be very, very close. The 49ers will make a show of it, however with the Luck-Harbaugh matchup, and the entire team buoyed by the acquisition of Trent Richardson, the Colts will walk away from this one the victors. Indianapolis win 27-24.
Chicago Bears @ Pittsburgh SteelersWhen and where: Monday September 23, Heinz Field, Pennsylvania Coverage: LIVE on Channel One, 10:20 AM AEST NBC’s Sunday Night Football this week features a pair of teams which seem to be moving in opposite directions. The Chicago Bears (2-0) are off to a perfect start under new Head Coach Marc Trestman, while the Pittsburgh Steelers (0-2) are still searching for their first win of the season. Chicago’s hiring of Marc Trestman, a Canadian Football League coach with no prior NFL head coaching experience, was heavily criticised when it happened, however the move seems to be paying dividends as the Bears look to be one of the strongest teams in the league through two weeks. Jay Cutler is playing solid football, and while the defence has been up and down, the team has shown mental strength by coming back to win from a pair of 4th quarter deficits. Pittsburgh, however, looks a shadow of the team which went to the Super Bowl in 2011. The Steelers’ offence has shown an inability to get anything done, and while the defence has done a good job of limiting opposing teams, the offensive ineptitude is just too much for Pittsburgh to overcome. QB Ben Roethlisberger will need to come up with something special if the Steelers want any hope of winning this game. Watch out for: RB Matt Forte has been a big part of Chicago’s success in the past, however he hasn’t managed to make a significant impact yet this season. Look for him to break out this week against a dispirited Pittsburgh team, and put up a couple of touchdowns. Final word and prediction: This game looks pretty straight forward. Chicago are playing very well, Pittsburgh are playing very badly, and it would take something big to change the fortunes of both teams. The Bears will leave Heinz Field the victors. Chicago win 31-10. Week 3 is shaping up to be an exciting week of football, and even as we see some teams streaking away and some teams struggling to find answers, it is still early days and anything is possible! How do you think these games will turn out? Let us know in the comments section below!