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Week 7 Cheat Sheet

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Everything you need to know as kickoff approaches...

Key game-time decisions

All players questionable unless noted

Harrison: Week 7 predictions
Can the Chargers and Cowboys each notch their sixth win of the year? Elliot Harrison projects Week 7's winners and losers. READ

Jimmy Graham (shoulder) TE, New Orleans Saints

Graham was limited on Thursday and Friday. He will test his shoulder out prior to the game. There is some speculation the tight end could play as a red zone specialist this week. UPDATE: NFL Media Insider Ian Rapoport reports that Graham is likely to play Sunday against the Lions. The plan is for Graham to be used mostly in red-zone situations.

Calvin Johnson (ankle) WR, Detroit Lions

Coach Jim Caldwell said, "Miracles can happen" when asked Friday if Megatron would play. Then the Lions labeled the wideout as questionable. So you're tellin' me there's a chance? UPDATE: Rapoport says it's unlikely Johnson plays Sunday.

Kelvin Benjamin (concussion) WR Carolina Panthers

The rookie practiced in full on Fridaypassed a concussion test and was cleared to play Sunday, Rapoport reported, according to sources.

A.J. Green (toe) WR -- DOUBTFUL -- Cincinnati Bengals

Another week without the star for Andy Dalton. Mohamed Sanu will be the go-to receiver once again. UPDATE: NFL Media's Jeff Darlington reports Green will not play.

Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie (back, hamstring) CB, New York Giants

DRC returned limited on Friday. NFL Media's Kimberly Jones reported Saturday the cornerback traveled to Dallas with the team -- indicating he could be healthy enough to go.

Vernon Davis (back) TE -- PROBABLE -- San Francisco 49ers

The tight end was full all week and should be fine.

Tramaine Brock (toe) CB; Chris Culliver (shoulder) CB; Jimmie Ward (quadriceps) S, San Francisco 49ers

Having a boatload of defenders out (Patrick Willis) or questionable is never good when facing Peyton Manning.

Eric Ebron (hamstring) TE -- DOUBTFUL -- Detroit Lions

The rookie missed all week. Expect a bigger role for Brandon Pettigrew in the passing game if Ebron indeed sits out, as expected.

Zac Stacy (ankle) RB -- PROBABLE -- St. Louis Rams

Stacy will likely play, but offensive coordinator Brian Schottenheimer has reiterated he plans to go with the hot hand in his running back-by-committee (fantasy football fans don't like hearing that).

Jake Locker (right hand) QB, Tennessee Titans

It's not looking good for Locker, again. Expect Charlie "Clipboard Jesus" Whitehurst to get the start, again.

Jarrett Boykin (groin) WR; Tramon Williams (ankle) CB, Green Bay Packers

Boykin was limited all week. Williams returned Friday (limited) after missing Thursday's practice. With Sam Shields already declared out, the Packers' defense would sorely miss Williams if he can't go.

Marcel Reece (quadriceps) RB; Justin Tuck (knee) DE, Oakland Raiders

Both returned Friday on a limited basis after missing two practices.

MNF

Jadeveon Clowney (knee) LB, Houston Texans

The No. 1 overall pick was limited on Friday and Saturday.

Ryan Shazier (knee) LB, Pittsburgh Steelers

The rookie missed the last three games and was limited all week in practice.

Weather Tracking*

Not much precipitation to worry about this week (especially Sunday), but winds could start to become a factor as fall continues to blow in.

Vikings at Bills -- 45 degrees / Winds (Around 17 mph at kickoff)
Falcons at Ravens -- 53 degrees / Winds (13 mph)
Titans at Redskins -- 55 degrees / Winds (13 mph)
Texans at Steelers (Monday) -- 52 degrees / Chance of rain (28 percent)
*Forecasts courtesy of Weather Underground

Three matchups to watch

Peyton Manning vs. San Francisco 49ers banged-up defense

Brooks: Must-see matchups
What are the most intriguing Week 7 battles in games across the NFL? Bucky Brooks provides his scouting eye. READ

Manning is gunning for Brett Favre's touchdown record (508) -- in case somehow you hadn't heard. The Niners' stout defense is allowing just 287.2 yards per game in total offense (second in the NFL) and has yet to allow a 300-yard passer. But that defense also hasn't faced at team with the diverse weaponry Manning will employ. Patrick Willis (toe) being out will hurt immensely -- especially with Julius Thomas lurking. If the plethora of injured defensive backs can't go for San Francisco, it will make slowing Manning's precision passing game that much more difficult.

Saints offensive line vs. Lions defensive front

The Lions went off for eight sacks last week. The back end of the Lions' No. 1 ranked defense has given a dominant front four time to get to the quarterback each contest this season. Meanwhile, the Saints have surprisingly lacked big plays. New Orleans' line has performed well at times this season but will need a big effort to keep Drew Brees clean. If Brees gets time, he could carve up the Lions. But if Ndamukong Suh, Ezekiel Ansah and Co. get consistent pressure, it could be another big-play deficient day for the Saints.

Cam Newton vs. Clay Matthews/Julius Peppers

SuperCam is back! Last week's 107-yard performance was a great sign for the Panthers' balanced attack. Newton has been great from the pocket, but when he's picking up chunk yardage with his feet, he's otherworldly. Missing multiple running backs, the Panthers should employ plenty of read option on Sunday. The Packers have a history of getting beaten by running quarterbacks, including this year. Teams have used Clay Matthews' aggressiveness against him on multiple occasions this season. If the Packers outside 'backers can't contain Newton, it could be a long day for the defense.

Did You Know?

General Knowledge

Twenty teams (62.5 percent) are in or within one game of first place in their respective divisions, tied for the most through Week 6 since realignment in 2002 (20 teams in 2010).

Of the 479 touchdowns, 303 have been passes, the most through the first six weeks of any season (previous high was 289 in 2013; 277 in 2012; 268 in 2011; 263 in 2002).

Atlanta Falcons at Baltimore Ravens

Over the last three weeks, Matt Ryan has completed just 26.7 percent (8-of-30) of his passes of 15-plus air yards, the third lowest percentage among quarterbacks with at least 10 such pass attempts. During the first three weeks of the season, Ryan had completed 69.0 percent (20-of-29) of 15-plus air yard passes, the highest percentage.

The Ravens have scored on 47.7 percent of their drives this season (best in NFL) and gone three-and-out on only 12.3 percent of drives (third lowest percentage in NFL). Against a clipped Falcons' defense, that three-and-out percentage should only go down.

Minnesota Vikings at Buffalo Bills

The Vikings' defense has at least one sack in every game this season (14 total), but it's also given up 100-plus yards rushing in five straight games and has just five takeaways this season, all via interceptions.

One big reason Kyle Orton is better than EJ Manuel: This season, Orton has a completion percentage of 81.0 on third down, the highest in the NFL among signal callers with at least 20 third-down pass attempts. Manuel completed just 50.0 percent of third-down passes this season, second lowest in the NFL among QBs with at least 20.

Miami Dolphins at Chicago Bears

The Dolphins are 0-3 this season in games with fewer than 360 total yards and 2-0 with 360-plus total yards. Those totals are directly tied to a defense that has forced six turnovers in their two wins and just two in the three losses.

The Bears are the only team in the NFL with four players with 300-plus receiving yards: Alshon Jeffrey, 495; Matt Forte, 376; Martellus Bennett, 364; and Brandon Marshall, 301.

File this one in the "Who Knew?" category: Jay Cutler has not thrown a TD pass of 20-plus air yards in 2014. Cutler is the only quarterback in the NFL to have at least 20 attempts of 20-plus air yards without a TD.

New Orleans Saints at Detroit Lions

Drew Brees' season stats: 68.8 completion percentage, 314.8 yards per game, nine TDs, six INTs, 91.8 passer rating. He is on pace for 5,037 yards, 29 TD, 19 INT this season, which would mark his fewest yards since 2010 (4,620) and fewest TDs since 2007 (28).

With Calvin Johnson dealing with ankle issues last two weeks, Matthew Stafford has completed just one pass of 15-plus air yards. In Weeks 1-4 he completed 13 of such passes.

Carolina Panthers at Green Bay Packers

Cam Newton's 17 carries in Week 6 were the most rush attempts by a quarterback in a game since Tim Tebow had 22 for Denver in Week 12, 2011 at San Diego (Broncos won in OT, 16-13) [semi-relevant Tebow reference -- bonus points, activated!].

Aaron Rodgers is the first player in NFL history with at least 15 touchdown passes and no more than one interception through the first six games of a season. Rodgers has 14 TDs and zero INTs since Week 2.

Cleveland Browns at Jacksonville Jaguars

The Browns have eight rushing touchdowns on the season after totaling four all of last year. Those touchdowns have helped Cleveland score at least 21 points in every game this season. The last time the Browns scored 21 points in five straight games was 2007, when they did it in eight straight games (Weeks 6-14) -- the starting quarterback was Derek Anderson, and they finished 10-6, second in AFC North.

The last time the Browns scored 21-plus points in each of their first five games of a season was in 1969 (first seven games) led by starting quarterback Bill Nelsen and running back Leroy Kelly.

Blake Bortles set a Jaguars' rookie record for passing yards (336) Week 6 at Tennessee. However, the Jags' offense has yet to score more than 17 points in a game this season and has two or more giveaways in four straight games (12 on the season). Bortles has thrown at least one interception in all four of his outings and has seven total.

Cincinnati Bengals at Indianapolis Colts

The Bengals have lost six straight games versus the Colts on the road. The last time Cincy beat Indy on the road: Week 11, 1997, when a 36-year-old Boomer Esiason replaced a woozy Jeff Blake in the third quarter with the Bengals trailing 10-7 and led the Bengals to a 28-13 victory. Esiason had two TD, zero INT. On the other sideline, Kelly Holcomb (starting in place of injured QBs Jim Harbaugh and Paul Justin) threw one TD and three interceptions.

Per Pro Football Focus, opposing quarterbacks have a passer rating of just 34.3 when targeting Vontae Davis this season, second lowest in the league among CBs with at least 20 targets. For Davis, it is a big improvement from 2013, when opposing signal callers had a 98.2 passer rating targeted him -- that was the 81st lowest rating in the NFL among cornerbacks with at least 30 targets.

Missing Mike Zimmer? The Bengals have the NFL's 28th ranked total defense (398.8 YPG) after having the league's third ranked total defense (305.5 YPG) in 2013.

Seattle Seahawks at St. Louis Rams

Even before the Percy Harvin trade, it appeared Marshawn Lynch would see the ball more this week. Last year in a near loss to the Rams, Lynch had eight carries. Offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell gave him 25 and 27 touches the following two weeks, respectively.

Of Russell Wilson's 31 rushing attempts, 23 (74.2 percent) have gone for 4 or more yards, the highest percentage in the NFL among players with at least 10 rush attempts.

Wilson has fewer than 250 passing yards in four of his five games this season. The Rams have allowed fewer than 250 passing yards in four of their five games.

Your weekly reminder: THE ST. LOUIS RAMS STILL ONLY HAVE ONE SACK THIS SEASON. Unfathomable. They became the first team since 1964 (as far back as we can check) with one or fewer sack through their first five games.

Tennessee Titans at Washington Redskins

Quick stats:

Tennessee has intercepted seven passes this season (T-fifth in NFL), including one in four straight games.

Kirk Cousins leads the NFL with eight INTs, including three in his last game.

The Titans are converting 31.9 percent on third down in 2014, last in the NFL.

The Redskins held their last two opponents to a combined 12-of-31 (38.7 percent) on third down.

Washington has 300-plus yards of total offense in every game this season.

Tennessee has allowed 300-plus yards in five straight games.

The Redskins have held their last two opponents to 250 passing yards or fewer.

Charlie Whitehurst (likely starter) has one career game (in six starts) with 200-plus passing yards.

Kansas City Chiefs at San Diego Chargers

Alex Smith is averaging just 6.5 air yards per pass attempt this season, lowest in NFL (minimum 75 pass attempts).

Branden Oliver became the fifth undrafted rookie since 1936 (first NFL Draft) to rush for 100-plus yards in back-to-back games, joining LeGarrette Blount (2010 Buccaneers), Dominic Rhodes (2001 Colts), Fred Lane (1997 Panthers) and Clark Gaines (1976 Jets).

Antonio Gates is 90 yards shy of passing Lance Alworth to become the franchise's all-time leader in receiving yards.

New York Giants at Dallas Cowboys

Tony Romo and Eli Manning have met 14 times in their careers, and their numbers are eerily similar in those games. Romo's completion percentage is 65.2, while Manning's is 62.3. Manning averages 8.6 passing yards per game more than Romo (273.1 to 264.5). Romo has thrown one more TD (30 to 29) and two more INTs (16 to 14) than Manning. As for head-to-head wins, the two are tied at seven.

The Cowboys have gone three straight games with 400-plus yards of total offense, which is the first time that happened since Weeks 5-7, 1983, when Danny White and Tony Dorsett were their offensive leaders. The last time Dallas had four straight games with 400-plus yards total offense: Weeks 1-4 in 1976, behind Roger Staubach and Drew Pearson.

Arizona Cardinals at Oakland Raiders

The Cardinals are going three-and-out 29.3 percent of the time, third worst in the NFL. The Raiders, 31.5 percent (worst).

Arizona has 60 plays of 10-plus yards this season, third fewest in the NFL. Oakland has 55.

Arizona's defense has not allowed 100-plus yards rushing this season and has not allowed 65 yards rushing to any single player.

Derek Carr's eight TD passes is tied for the Raiders rookie record (with Matt McGloin, last year). The quarterback has been sacked three times in his first five NFL games. His older brother, David, was sacked 31 times in his first five NFL games.

San Francisco 49ers at Denver Broncos

When Michael Crabtree has fewer than 50 yards this season, the 49ers are 4-0. When Crabtree has over 80 yards, S.F. is 0-2.

The 49ers are allowing an opposing passer rating of 73.7 this season and have not allowed a 300-yard passer.

Peyton Manning's offense has no giveaways in three of five games this season. The Broncos have gone 50 consecutive trips into the red zone with points (second longest active streak in NFL -- SD, 51) and is averaging 29.4 points per game (third in NFL).

Houston Texans at Pittsburgh Steelers

Just marvel at J.J. Watt's stat line through six games: 26 tackles, four sacks, one INT (80-yd return for TD), two fumble recoveries (including a 45-yard return for TD), six passes defensed, one TD reception.

The Steelers are 7-0 on Monday night at Heinz Field. Ben Roethlisberger is 5-0 at home in his career on Monday night. Only Peyton Manning (8-0) and Randall Cunningham (6-0) have more wins without a loss on Mondays. For one more night, Neil O'Donnell finds himself right next to Roethlisberger, with an identical 5-0 Monday night record as starter.

Le'Veon Bell and Antonio Brown are currently ranked second in rushing yards and receiving yards in the NFL, respectively.

The latest Around The NFL Podcast previews every Week 7 game and recaps the Patriots' win over the Jets. Find more Around The NFL content on NFL NOW.

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