Can the Falcons beat Texans to go 4-0? NFC South Week 4 preview


The NFC South is a two-horse race right now, with the Atlanta Falcons (3-0) and Carolina Panthers (3-0) tied at the top. Behind them is the Tampa Bay Buccaneers (1-2) and New Orleans Saints (0-3). Here’s a look at this week’s games.

Houston Texans at Atlanta Falcons: Sunday at 1:00 p.m. EST

Not many predicted the Atlanta Falcons would be 3-0 heading into this game. Sure, they have had some good fortune by not having to play Tony Romo, Dez Bryant and Jason Pierre-Paul in recent weeks, but Dan Quinn’s team has still had to play hard to win two road games against tough opposition.

Up next is a Texans team coming off their first win of the season last week. They bring plenty of weapons on defense but not many on offense. J.J. Watt has three sacks this season, and 2014 first overall pick Jadeveon Clowney is probable with a shoulder injury. The defense has a collection of dominant pass rushers that will test this Falcons offensive line.

MORE: Falcons-Texans – Full game preview

This will be a classic battle between one of the league’s top offenses against a strong defense. The other battle might not be as intriguing—the Ryan Mallett-led Texans offense against a rebuilding Falcons defense. Whether Arian Foster plays or not could be huge.

Carolina Panthers at Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Sunday at 1:00 p.m. EST

The Buccaneers are rebuilding with a new quarterback, while the Panthers’ quarterback has his team on his back. Carolina is 3-0 despite a lack of weapons on offense outside of tight end Greg Olsen. Cam Newton has been outstanding, and alone he can cause this Tampa Bay defense a number of problems.

Can Jameis Winston find a way through the Panthers defense? Mike Evans is healthy and poses a mismatch at receiver. At home, can they find a way to get their second win and end the Panthers’ undefeated streak?

Dallas Cowboys at New Orleans Saints: Sunday at 8:30 p.m. EST

Drew Brees is probable after missing last week’s game with a shoulder injury, and this saves us from a primetime battle between Luke McCown and Brandon Weeden. Instead, it will likely be Brees up against Weeden.

The Saints have been bad, really bad, but they almost picked up the upset win against the Panthers last week with McCown under center. At home against a Tony Romo and Dez Bryant-less Cowboys, can they get off the mark?

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