What to watch: NFL Week 3 preview, schedule, live streams

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TAMPA, FLORIDA - NOVEMBER 23: Tom Brady #12 of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers looks to pass against the Los Angeles Rams during the second quarter in the game at Raymond James Stadium on November 23, 2020 in Tampa, Florida. (Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)
Tom Brady #12 of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers looks to pass against the Los Angeles Rams. (Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)

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For each of the past 10 off-seasons, the NFL community has collectively tried to write Tom Brady off. And every year, the same thing happens - Brady proves the doubters wrong.

The start to the 2021-22 NFL season has been no different. Through just two games, the six-time Super Bowl champion has thrown for 655 yards and a league-leading NINE touchdowns while leading the Tampa Bay Buccaneers to a 2-0 start.

Impressive stats for anyone, but when you add the fact that Brady is 44, it starts to get downright absurd.

Many believed before the season that the Buccaneers were favourites to represent the NFC in the Super Bowl for a second straight year, and through two weeks, who’s to say that won’t be the case?

However, headlining the Week 3 NFL slate is the toughest test so far for last year’s Super Bowl champs as they head on the road to take on another NFC contender.

The Week 3 slate also includes a pivotal divisional showdown, as well as a rematch of the 2020 NFC Championship. Here is everything you need to know about these three games:

Los Angeles Chargers vs. Kansas City Chiefs:

Sunday, Sept. 26 at 1:00PM ET | Live Stream

Spread: Chiefs -6.5

Over/Under Total: 55.5

Moneyline: Chargers (+250), Chiefs (-300)

There are two teams in the AFC West who are 2-0. Yes, the Las Vegas Raiders and Denver Broncos… just as everyone would have assumed.

The two teams at 1-1, the Kansas City Chiefs and Los Angeles Chargers, face off in Week 3, and with the Broncos taking on the hapless New York Jets, the loser will most likely find themselves two games behind in the divisional race.

It’s obviously early, but it doesn’t take a genius to know that 2-1 feels a whole lot better than 1-2.

After starting the season 1-0, both teams suffered heartbreaking losses in Week 2. The Chargers fell to the Dallas Cowboys on a last-second Greg Zuerlein field goal, while Patrick Mahomes was outdone by Lamar Jackson and the Baltimore Ravens in a Sunday night masterpiece.

The game features two of the top four passing attacks in the league through two games, with the Chiefs sitting second in the league, averaging 333.5 yards per game, while the Chargers are just behind at 323.5.

Each team will look to its playmaking safety to try and help slow down the high-flying offences. The Chargers’ Derwin James is picking up right where he left off after missing the entire 2020-21 season and most of the 2019-20 campaign, while the Chiefs’ Tyrann Mathieu was dynamic in Week 2, picking off Jackson twice.

But while the defensive stars will likely make their plays, Justin Herbert and the Chargers offence will have to score its share of points to have any hope, because, as usual, you can rest assured the Chiefs most certainly will.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers vs. Los Angeles Rams:

Sunday, Sept. 26 at 4:25PM ET | Live Stream  

Spread: Buccaneers -1.0

Over/Under Total: 55.0

Moneyline: Buccaneers (-115), Rams (-105)

The game of the week features the two teams currently favoured to represent the NFC in Super Bowl LVI at SoFi Stadium. And as it happens, that is exactly where this game will take place.

Brady and the Buccaneers will head across the country to take on the Los Angeles Rams and their new pivot, Matthew Stafford.

Sean McVay’s Rams are also undefeated after hanging on against the Indianapolis Colts in Week 2. There was a tremendous amount of hype coming into this season when Stafford left his long-time home in Detroit and joined the Rams, and so far he has lived up to expectations.

Stafford was Week 1 NFC Player of the Week after the Rams' win over the Chicago Bears and continued his strong play against the Colts. Maybe no one is happier to have Stafford in town than receiver Cooper Kupp, who through two games has racked up 271 yards and three touchdowns on 16 receptions.

But Stafford and the Rams will have their hands full with the Buccaneers in Week 3. The Tampa Bay defence forced Atlanta Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan into three interceptions in their Week 2 win, including two by safety Mike Edwards, who took both back for scores.

On the offensive side of the ball, Brady has weapons galore - Mike Evans, Chris Godwin and Antonio Brown, plus his ever-faithful tight end Rob Gronkowski.

The Rams will try and counter the high-flying Bucs offence with two of the best defensive players on the planet in defensive tackle Aaron Donald and cornerback Jalen Ramsey. But if there is one quarterback who won’t be intimidated, it is Brady.

It’s incredibly early, but if these teams end up where many predict at the end of the season, this game could be huge in determining which squad earns home-field advantage through the playoffs. Enjoy what should be a high-scoring affair with star power littering the field at all times.

Green Bay Packers vs. San Francisco 49ers

Sunday, Sept. 26 at 8:15PM ET | Live Stream 

Spread: 49ers -3.5

Over/Under Total: 48.0

Moneyline: Packers (+170), 49ers (-200)

This rematch of the 2020 NFC Championship game has big shoes to fill. Through the first two weeks of the NFL season, every primetime game – other than Rams vs. Bears – has been thrilling. None more so than Week 2’s Sunday Night clash between the Ravens and the Chiefs, which will most certainly be in the running for game of the year when all is said and done.

So when the Packers head to San Francisco to take on the 49ers this Sunday night, you can bet expectations will be high.

And, thankfully, after looking like a shell of himself in Week 1, Packers pivot Aaron Rodgers returned to form Monday in a dominating win over the Detroit Lions. The reigning MVP was clinical, throwing for 255 yards and four touchdowns on the way to a 35-17 victory. You could almost hear a collective sigh of relief from the Green Bay faithful on Monday night, as not only did Rodgers show signs of life but so did their other offensive stars. Aaron Jones scored four touchdowns against the Lions, while Davante Adams caught eight balls for 121 yards.

Unfortunately for the Packers, the defence is still an area of concern. Through two weeks, Jared Goff and Jameis Winston, not superstar quarterbacks by any stretch of the imagination, have both been able to have their way with the Packers defensive unit at times.

Enter 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan, one of the best offensive minds in football, and Packers fans might have a few sleepless nights. The fifth-year head coach has his team undefeated through two weeks, after wins over both the Lions and the Philadelphia Eagles.

Impressively, both the 49ers’ wins have come in completely different fashions. They won a shootout against the Lions in Week 1, while grinding out a defensive battle in Week 2 against the Eagles. That's a skill that could be important in the gauntlet of a division that is the NFC West.

An intriguing matchup to watch in this one may be the 49ers' No. 1 receiver Deebo Samuel going up against the Packers' shutdown corner Jaire Alexander. So far, no one has had much success stopping Samuel, as he currently leads the NFL in receiving yards with 282.

This matchup has all the potential to give us another gripping primetime showdown. Let’s see if it lives up to the hype.

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