Carolina became the first team to get to 3-0 this season when it started the third week with the victory over Houston Thursday night.
The winner of the only game pitting two 2-0 teams against each other this weekend — the Bucs and Rams is the late game on Fox Sunday — will also be 3-0.
—Four other 2-0 teams — Raiders, 49ers, Arizona and Broncos – will be going for 3-0. Arizona and Denver will be facing winless teams (Jaguars and Jets) so they have good shots at 3-0. The Raiders, facing Miami and the 49ers, taking on Green Bay, will have tougher tasks. The 49ers-Packer game will be on Sunday night.
—Two of the seven 0-2 teams – Giants and Falcons – will meet so unless they tie, the loser will go to 0-3. The Jets and Jaguars figure to go to 0-3 because they play 2-0 teams – Cardinals and Broncos. The three other 0-2 teams –Lions, Vikings and Colts – will be playing the Ravens, Seahawks and Titans. All three are 1-1.
—The Bucs-Rams game is the most interesting game of the day. Tom Brady, who 20 years ago became the Patriot starter when Mo Lewis of the Jets knocked out Drew Bledsoe, will go against Matthew Stafford, who is trying to resurrect his career with the Rams, after playing on mostly losing teams in Detroit. Brady was held to 13 points by the Rams defense in the Super Bowl three years ago, but won 13-3 because Jared Goff, who was shipped to the Lions in the Stafford deal, put only three points on the board. But last year the Rams beat Tampa Bay and Brady, 27-24, with Goff so it is up to Stafford to match that.
—The Chiefs, coming off a surprising loss to the Ravens, will try to get back on track against the 1-1 Chargers. With the Raiders and Broncos off to 2-0 starts, the Chiefs can’t afford another stumble.
—Davis Miles, the Houston rookie, became the 34th quarterback and the fourth rookie to start Thursday night in place of injured Tyrod Taylor. The Texans lost, so rookie quarterbacks are now 1-6. The fifth rookie quarterback and the 35th quarterback to start, Justin Fields, gets the nod in Chicago when he replaces Andy Dalton against the Browns.
—Jameis Winston faces a big test when the Saints go to New England. He was in the opener against Green Bay but then didn’t look good against Carolina last week and is looking to bounce back. Mac Jones, the only rookie quarterback to get a win this year, will try for a second one.
—Carson Wentz, who has ankle injuries, will be a game time decision for the Colts against the Titans, who will be having a reunion for the old Oilers. If Wentz can’t go, the Colts will go with second year player Jacob Eason or Brett Hundley.
—The MNF game will feature Dallas playing at Philadelphia in the renewal of an old division rivalry. The Cowboys look like the best team in the division and want to show it in their first division game this year.
—One thing to watch this weekend is the number of penalties that will be called. Rick Gosselin reports that last year the officials never called more than 198 penalties in a game. This year they called 214 and 221 the first two games. No explanation for the increase but the Washington Post reports the league isn’t yet ready to examine how the games are being called so far this year.