Robert Griffin III may be a rookie but he is maturing fast for the 2-2 Washington Redskins.
After showing great poise under pressure against the 1-3 Tampa Bay Buccaneers last Sunday, he now faces his biggest test in the 4-0 Atlanta Falcons this Sunday, 7 October, at 12noon Cayman time on FOX.
While the home crowd is on his side, Griffin III’s biggest asset is his ability to make plays outside of the pocket.
Granted, Atlanta have a good enough defence to slow down the Heisman Trophy winner. Plus quarterback Matt Ryan is on a high coming off a miraculous comeback win over the 1-3 Carolina Panthers. But the Falcons have to falter eventually and odds are Washington will reign them in with a six-point upset.
As usual, there is no shortage of intrigue on Sunday. Other contests to note are the 2-2 Denver Broncos battling the 2-2 New England Patriots at 3.25pm on CBS and the 3-1 San Diego Chargers facing the 0-4 New Orleans Saints at 7.20pm on NBC.
The Broncos-Patriots match is essentially a showdown between Peyton Manning and Tom Brady. Both are coming off resounding victories last week against the Oakland Raiders and Buffalo Bills, respectively. Denver have arguably the more complete team and odds are the Broncos win by a touchdown.
The Chargers-Saints match-up looks, on paper, like an easy call. San Diego have done well behind Phillip Rivers and a 12th ranked defence. However the Saints, behind Drew Brees, have too much firepower to be this bad. Expect New Orleans to get the upset by a field goal.
For the record, the 4-0 Arizona Cardinals battle the 2-2 St. Louis Rams on Thursday, 4 October, at 7.20pm on NFL Network. Kevin Kolb is playing very well and should take Arizona to a 10-point victory.