NFL preseason Week 1: One thing to watch in each game of busy weekend, including Trey Lance vs. Jordan Love

The first official week of the 2022 NFL preseason is here. We’ve already got two games down after Thursday night, which means there are 14 more to go this weekend. That’s 28 teams in action over the next three days. We’ve got a Handy guide for you in the space below, with start times and TV listings, as well as what you should be looking out for in each and every contest.

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Friday, Aug. 12

Falcons at Lions

Time: 6 p.m. ET
TV: NFL Network

There will be two top-10 picks in action in this game, with Falcons wide receiver Drake London and Lions edge rusher Aidan Hutchinson taking the field for their first preseason action. We’re also likely to see a bunch of Atlanta’s third-round pick at quarterback, Desmond Ridder. Plenty of scenes from this game are likely to end up being Featured on next week’s edition of Hard Knocksso that’s worth watching out for as well.

Browns at Jaguars

Time: 7 pm ET
TV: NFL+, Check local listings

Jacksonville played in the Hall of Fame Game last week, but barely any of the first-team players saw any action. The starters — including Trevor Lawrence and Travis Etienne — are expected to play a couple series in this one. We’ll also get another look at No. 1 overall pick Travon Walker, who collected a sack against the Raiders in the preseason opener. For Cleveland, we should watch out for a ruling in the Deshaun Watson appeal, as Cleveland has indicated he will start this game, but if he receives a year-long suspension, he would be ineligible to play.

Cardinals at Bengals

Time: 7:30 p.m. ET
TV: NFL+, Check local listings

It seems like half of Arizona’s offense is on the injury report, so the players of note to watch on that side of the ball are likely running backs Eno Benjamin and Keaontay Ingram. Tight end Trey McBride may or may not be able to suit up. Arizona also has a couple of third-round pass rushers set to make their respective debuts in Myjai Sanders and Cameron Thomas. With Jessie Bates still not in Bengals camp, it’s certainly worth keeping an eye on first-round pick Dax Hill, who could be in line for a significant regular-season role if Bates doesn’t return to the fold before the season begins.

Jets at Eagles

Time: 7:30 p.m. ET
TV: NFL+, Check local listings

The Jets are expected to play their starters for the 1-2 series, which means there are a whole bunch of players to keep an eye on here, including Zach Wilson, Bryce Hall, Michael Carter, Elijah Moore, and Garrett Wilson. Denzel Mims could be a trade target for other teams, so if he shows out, that might help the Jets as well. On the other side of the ball, Rookie Sauce Gardner and Jermaine Johnson should see some action as well. Nick Sirianni was non-committal about how much action his starters would see, but any snaps featuring Jalen Hurts with both AJ Brown and DeVonta Smith on the field should be interesting, as will the team’s running back rotation with the first team. Oh, and Jordan Davis pushing New York’s pocket is something to watch out for.

Packers at 49ers

Time: 7:30 p.m. ET
TV: NFL Network

Jordan Love and Trey Lance are the ones to watch, for however long they’re out there. Plus, Packers Rookies Romeo Doubs, Devonte Wyatt, and Quay Walker and San Francisco’s running back rotation with the first team offense.

Saturday, Aug. 13

Chiefs at Bears

Time: 1 pm ET
TV: NFL+, NFL Network

Andy Reid said the starters will play the first quarter of this game, so all eyes will be on Kansas City’s wide receiver rotation while Patrick Mahomes is under center. JuJu Smith-Schuster, Marquez Valdes-Scantling, Skyy Moore, Mecole Hardman … who gets snaps, and where do they line up? Matt Eberflus indicated that his starters will get some time as well, so keep an eye on both Justin Fields and the Offensive line in front of him.

Panthers at Commanders

Time: 1 pm ET
TV: NFL+, Check local listings

This one is easy: Who gets the first-team action under center for the Panthers, and can either Baker Mayfield or Sam Darnold separate himself from the others in the quarterback competition?

Colts at Bills

Time: 4 pm ET
TV: NFL Network

Indianapolis plans to play its starters in the first quarter, so the new-look offense with Matt Ryan under center will be something to watch. Keep an eye on who gets the start at left tackle, as well as how snaps are divided up between the receivers after Michael Pittman. Josh Allen is not expected to play here, so it’s probably best to keep an eye on the other side of the ball, and particularly the cornerback situation for Buffalo. Rookies Kaiir Elam and Christian Benford could see some action.

Seahawks at Steelers

Time: 7 pm ET
TV: NFL Network

Geno Smith or Drew Lock? Mitchell Trubisky or Mason Rudolph (or Kenny Pickett)? Plus, Seattle’s rookie offensive linemen, Charles Cross and Abraham Lucas, and rookie running back Kenneth Walker. Steelers Rookie wideouts George Pickens and Calvin Austin III should see their first preseason action as well.

Dolphins at Buccaneers

Time: 7:30 p.m
TV: NFL+, Check local listings

Any discussion surrounding the Scandalous Tom Brady-to-the-Dolphins rumors, even though Brady won’t be there for this game as he’s away from the team dealing with a personal matter. With Brady out, we’re likely to see a bunch of Blaine Gabbert and Kyle Trask. Keep an eye on center Robert Hainsey, if he suits up, as he’ll be counted on to replace Ryan Jensen at the pivot. What Mike McDaniel’s Miami offense looks like will be fascinating to see, even if Tua Tagovailoa is not expected to play.

Saints at Texans

Time: 8 p.m
TV: NFL+, Check local listings

New Orleans has two coaches in new roles with former defensive coordinator Dennis Allen taking over as head coach, and offensive coordinator Pete Carmichael inheriting play-calling duties from Sean Payton. Rookies Chris Olave and Trevor Penning should see some action, and it’s worth watching running backs Tony Jones Jr. and Abram Smith, in case one or both are pressed into action in the event of an Alvin Kamara suspension. Unfortunately, Houston’s first-round picks, Derek Stingley and Kenyon Green, are not expected to play. Davis Mills should get some action, though, and it’ll be interesting to see how he looks heading into Year 2.

Cowboys at Broncos

Time: 9 pm ET
TV: NFL+, NFL Network

Dak Prescott and Ezekiel Elliott won’t play in this one, and it’s likely that CeeDee Lamb, Tyron Smith, Zack Martin, and many of Dallas’ defensive starters won’t, either. Therefore, attention should be focused on first-round pick Tyler Smith on the Offensive line, as well as the team’s young receivers, including third-round pick Jalen Tolbert and undrafted free agent Dennis Houston. Nathaniel Hackett has yet to indicate whether or not Russell Wilson and the rest of Denver’s starters will play at all against Dallas, but how much different his offense looks than that of his predecessor, as well as what Ejiro Evero’s defensive structure is, should be paid attention to.

Rams at Chargers

Time: 10 p.m. ET
TV: NFL+, Check local listings

These are two of the teams that give their starters the least amount of preseason action, so we’ll mostly be looking at which down-roster players show out and give themselves a chance to make the 53-man roster.

Sunday, Aug. 14

Vikings at Raiders

Time: 4:25 pm ET
TV: NFL Network

After last week, I guess we have to pay attention to the Raiders backfield, and how snaps are doled out between Josh Jacobs, Kenyan Drake, Ameer Abdullah, Zamir White, and Brandon Bolden. Plus, there’s the Derek Carr-to-Davante Adams connection, if they end up playing. Vikings quarterback Kellen Mond will likely see an extended run as he attempts to endear himself to new Coach Kevin O’Connell more than he did to Mike Zimmer. Minnesota’s Rookie defensive backs, Andrew Booth Jr., Lewis Cine, and Akayleb Evans are also worth watching.


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