RB William Green had a banner day rushing for over 100 yards against them in October. Because of injuries at receiver, it's of the utmost importance that they run the ball well.
Defensively, continue to shut down the run like they have for most of the season. Also, control WR Chad Johnson like they did in the first matchups with double-teams. The Bengals haven't shown that they can get another receiver to step up consistently this season since Peter Warrick was lost.
What the Bengals have to do to win:
Offensively, go with more two tight end sets to get the running game going. If successful, that should open up the passing game somewhat.
Defensively, load the box and shut down their running game and make QB Kelly Holcomb beat them.
Philadelphia at New York Giants
What the Eagles have do to win:
Offensively, it won't be easy to pass because of wind in the stadium plus rain is expected so they'll have to make a stronger commitment to run the football. Now would be a good time to get the tight ends more involved in the short passing game.
Defensively, they do a solid job against the run. If they can accomplish that, they should have little trouble against the Giants' offense.
What the Giants have to do to win:
Offensively, to take the pressure off of QB Eli Manning, they'll have to be successful running the ball and the earlier the better. The Eagles don't do a good job of covering the tight end so get Jeremy Shockey involved in the passing game.
Defensively, control RB Brian Westbrook who hurt them in the first matchup. Also, don't let QB Donovan McNabb make any big plays especially to WR Terrell Owens who scored three times earlier this year against them. Make sure to double-team him all day and make another receiver beat them.
Tampa Bay at Carolina
What the Buccaneers have to do to win:
Offensively, make a strong commitment to the running game because Carolina is very weak in that area and MLB Dan Morgan is out again. That should open things up for the passing game.
Defensively, they shouldn't have too much trouble against the run as Nick Goings isn't anything special. The Buccaneers run defense is a lot better than Arizona's. Double-team WR Mushin Muhammad who has seven touchdowns in his last three games.
What the Panthers have to do to win:
Offensively, they will have to find a way to run the football effectively with Goings. In fact, they should try to get RB Jamal Robertson the ball as a change of face. Expect Tampa to have a safety over the top in order to keep Muhammad in front so they should get rookie WR Keary Colbert more involved.
Defensively, pressure QB Brian Griese who has been playing solid ball since he took over the starting job. They should also move WLB Will Witherspoon over inside at times to help against the run.
Washington at Pittsburgh
What the Redskins have to do to win:
Offensively, although it will be tough to do so, make a strong commitment to the run as long as the game is close. That will help take the pressure off of QB Patrick Ramsey to win the game. Even if they run for less than three yards per carry, it's the amount of carries that is most important. If they can run the ball at least 25 times, that means that Pittsburgh will have less possessions and less time with the ball. When called upon, one of the receivers probably will have to make a big play.
Defensively, continue to blitz like they have against every other team. That will help keep the passing game under control. They also have to tackle well against the run as the Steelers are considered one of if not the top rushing team in the league.
What the Steelers have to do to win:
Offensively, the Redskins do a good job of stopping the run but they must be successful in that area in order to take the pressure off of QB Ben Roethlisberger to win the game for them. With WR Plaxico Burress out, it will be even more important to establish the running game.
Defensively, continue to shut down the run and make Ramsey beat them. He hasn't shown in a few years that he can win a game on the road.
Jacksonville at Minnesota
What the Jaguars have to do to win:
Offensively, run, run, and run the football early and often. The Vikings are really struggling against the run. If successful, that should alleviate most double-teams on WR Jimmy Smith. Also, get RB Fred Taylor involved in the passing game, as the Vikings' linebackers aren't that good in coverage.
We would expect QB Byron Leftwich to work a lot out of the shotgun formation in passing situations since he's playing with an injured knee and will likely wear a brace during the game. That will also help him buy time.
Defensively, double-team WR Randy Moss any time he's on the field. Also, they have to control their running game. Additionally, don't let QB Daunte Culpepper roll out and make plays where he's most dangerous.
What the Vikings have to do to win:
Offensively, don't continue to platoon the backs. Let one back get his rhythm and stick with him. Get Moss the ball early and get involved all day. That will help open things up elsewhere.
Defensively, load the box and don't let Taylor break off any big runs. When the Jaguars are looking to pass, force Leftwich out of the pocket because he should have limited mobility.
San Diego at Kansas City
What the Chargers have to do to win:
Offensively, the Chiefs can't stop the run so get LaDainian Tomlinson the ball early and often. That will make them keep an extra defender in and that should help get single coverage elsewhere. The Chiefs are also susceptible to the deep pass to get the ball down field.
Defensively, they must pressure QB Trent Green and control him. Green has been on fire of late. Blitz the right side where tackle Chris Bober takes over for the injured John Welbourn. Also, don't let RB Derrick Blaylock break off any big runs.
What the Chiefs have to do to win:
Offensively, Blaylock has to be more patient in the running game. He has to let the blocks set up. Also, Green should continue to spread the ball around so San Diego can't key on any one receiver or TE Tony Gonzalez.
Defensively, they have to find a way to control Tomlinson or it will be a long day for the defense. If they can keep him under 100 yards, they'll be able to double cover TE Antonio Gates more.
Tennessee at Houston
What the Titans have to do to win:
Offensively, whoever runs the ball must be successful in order to set the passing game up where the Texans really struggle. If the running game is successful, they should be able to get the ball down field.
Defensively, don't let RB Domanick Davis break off any long runs. If successful, they'll be able to double-team WR Andre Johnson more. They'll need to get safety help on him deep like the other opponents have done.
What the Texans have to do to win:
Offensively, the Titans' linebackers are banged up so get Davis also involved in the passing game. They'll have to find a way to get Johnson the ball although we expect him to be doubled the whole game. They'll need one of their other receivers to step up. Nickel CB Andre Woolfork is out so they should pick on his replacement.
Defensively, control their running game and limit the down field passing plays where Tennessee is very dangerous.
What They have to Do to Win on Sunday - Early Game
Scout NFL Network Top Stories
Newly signed Murray has surgeryLatavius Murray, the Minnesota Vikings’ replacement for Adrian Peterson had surgery, the team announced Wednesday.
NFL looking to cut down commercial timeNFL commissioner Roger Goodell is looking to make the game a better viewing experience for fans.
Scout NFL Network03/22/2017
Over-under stat lines for free-agent moversSeveral playmakers moved teams in NFL free agency (or trades), but the expectations aren’t that high, according to one gambling site.
Scout NFL Network03/22/2017
Giants sign veteran RB Shaun DraughnThe journeyman running back is excited to be back in the playoff hunt.
The Giants Beat03/22/2017
Zimmer talks state of the VikingsMike Zimmer made an appearance on KFAN Tuesday and got hit with questions from all sides about the state of his Minnesota Vikings.