Texans quarterback Matt Schaub vs. Steelers safety Troy Polamalu -- Schaub puts up big passing numbers and Polamalu struggles against good passing quarterbacks who can move him with their eyes. He is good when a team can't throw -- see last week against Indy -- but he struggles when a good passing quarterback is under center. How do the Texans take advantage of his aggressive approach?
Saints guards Carl Nicks and Jahri Evans against Jaguars defensive tackle Terrance Knighton -- Evans and Nicks are the best guard tandem in the NFL. Both are big and tough. Knighton is a 330-pound player who has played well the first three weeks of the season. Nicks told me Thursday he plays games weighing closer to 360. Knighton is tough to move off the spot, so if the Saints want to run the football the guards will have to handle him.
Panthers left tackle Jordan Gross vs. Bears defensive end Julius Peppers -- Peppers gets to face his former team. You know he's juiced. Gross is a top-level tackle and these two have to know each other's tendencies. It will be interesting to see who gets the best of this one. The other thing is Peppers often flips to the other side, which would mean he would work against Jeff Otah some as well.
Cowboys outside linebacker DeMarcus Ware vs. Lions left tackle Jeff Backus -- Backus had a tough go of it with Jared Allen last week. Allen had three sacks, although two were the fault of Backus. Ware has five sacks in three games, and he's the best pass rusher in the league. Backus will have his hands full.
Ravens outside linebacker Terrell Suggs vs. Jets left tackle D'Brickashaw Ferguson -- Suggs is off to a fast start with four sacks, but Ferguson is a top pass protector. If the Jets are to have success throwing the football, Ferguson has to keep Suggs off Mark Sanchez. Suggs seems to be playing with a lot more explosiveness than he did a year ago.
Bills offensive line vs. Bengals defensive line -- The Bills line has surprised some with how well they've played this season, especially left tackle Demetrius Bell. But this Bengals line is made up of young impressive players. They come in waves. If the Bengals are to upset the Bills, it will be this group that decides it.
Bucs running back LaGarrette Blount vs. Colts middle linebacker Pat Angerer --Blount has played well the past two weeks for the Bucs after doing nothing in the opener. It's no coincidence that the Bucs have won both games. Angerer, who is now the starting middle linebacker with Gary Brackett done for the season, had 20 tackles last week against the Steelers. He has to be big in the Colts' chances of slowing Blount.
49ers tight end Vernon Davis vs. Eagles safeties Nate Allen and Jarrad Page -- The Eagles are benching Kurt Coleman and putting Allen in as the starter opposite Page. Allen has more range, so it should help the pass defense. Davis had a big game last week against the Bengals, and I expect Alex Smith to go to him early and often in this one. Can Allen and Page slow him down? It's going to be tough.
Vikings defensive end Jared Allen vs. Chiefs left tackle Brandon Albert -- Allen is not happy the Chiefs let him go, and he said so this week. He is coming off an impressive performance against the Lions where he had three sacks. Albert, a former first-round pick, hasn't lived up to the hype, although he is improved this season. Look for the Chiefs to chip on Allen.
Patriots receiver Wes Welker vs. Raiders corners -- Welker is Tom Brady's go-to guy and leads the league in catches. He had 16 catches last week. He's often in the slot, which will make it interesting to see how the Raiders play him. Do they drop Stanford Routt or Chris Johnson inside on him? My guess is Routt gets him.