NFL Week 7 preview: 49ers’ Brock Purdy back in action; Jets and Giants battle for bragging rights
The NFL is nearing the halfway point of the regular season, and things are beginning to heat up.
Once Super Bowl favorites, the San Francisco 49ers are on a two-game skid after losing to the Minnesota Vikings in a “Monday Night Football” showdown and are trending in the wrong direction after the Cleveland Browns snapped their 15-game regular-season win streak the week before.
With Brock Purdy out of concussion protocol on Saturday, the Niners can at least rely on their young signal-caller to turn things around in Sunday’s game against the Cincinnati Bengals.
Taylor finished last week’s win over the Commanders 18 of 29 for 279 yards and two second-quarter touchdown passes.
The biggest hurdle for the Giants will be overcoming the Jets’ defense, whose 13 takeaways are tied for third most in the NFL with a plus-5 differential.
On the line? Bragging rights, of course.
Battle of the rookies
The top two picks in the 2023 NFL Draft will face off Sunday when Bryce Young and the winless Carolina Panthers host C.J. Stroud and the Houston Texans in what will be the ultimate rookie showdown.
Even more compelling, the two young quarterbacks are longtime friends.
“They killed us terribly,” Stroud told reporters this week of a middle school game the two played against one another. “He had a really good game. I played terrible.”
But much has changed since that game nearly a decade ago, and Stroud is leading the way.
He has the 10th best quarterback rating in the league with nine touchdown passes and only one interception, while the No. 1 overall draft pick is 0-5 as a starter and 29th in league with his quarterback rating.
Not so Purdy
The season certainly isn’t on the line for the 49ers when they take on the Bengals Sunday, but Kyle Shanahan’s offense needs to turn things around to avoid a three-game losing streak.
To make matters worse, San Francisco was facing the possibility of being without Brock Purdy. He was listed as questionable and still in concussion protocol Friday. But good news came Saturday with “Mr. Irrelevant” being cleared and ready to start.
But the Bengals are on a bit of a hot streak and hoping to keep things going in that direction.
No days off!
For the first time in 12 years, every NFL team will play in Week 8 despite the start of byes.
The scheduling oddity comes after the Cincinnati Bengals, Dallas Cowboys, Tennessee Titans, New York Jets, Carolina Panthers and Houston Texans all had a week of rest last week. For the 2023 season, bye weeks began in Week 5.
But for Halloween weekend, the NFL has a game scheduled for all 32 teams.
The last time this happened was in 2011 when the NFL scheduled no byes for Week 10, according to a CBS Sports report.
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