Notes from the North
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The Kansas City Chiefs walk into this weekend's game against Tampa Bay with the best back in the league and a rusty young quarterback who has never posted a quarterback rating better than 67.2, even when he did play.

The question in my mind: will the fact that it's going to be Brady Quinn behind centre for the Chiefs actually help KC at Tampa Bay?

It's possible that Quinn's presence might just convince KC to ride Jamaal Charles rather than trying to do too much through the air against a stout Tampa defense. Charles leads the league with 551 yards on the ground through five games, averaging more than 5 yards a pop. With Matt Cassell injured, the Chiefs might just prepare themselves to focus on the rushing game, giving them their best chance to beat Tampa.

Other football questions that are on my mind heading into the weekend?

1. Which team will continue its upward swing: St. Louis or Miami? I've been impressed with the Rams of late but that Dolphin team seems to be riding some magic carpet recently, with a string of strong performances. I'm picking Miami at home but I wouldn't be surprised to see St. Louis continuing to rise with a win.

2. Is that porous Arizona offensive line just the tonic Mario Williams and his Buffalo linemates need? The Bills defensive front was supposed to be a strength coming into this season with the addition of Marvellous Mario but it's been a bust so far. Meanwhile, the surprising Cards have been winning despite a weak offensive line, a fault that was exposed last week. Can Williams and Co. exploit that weakness this week and finally break out?

3. Does the Seattle defense really belong in the league's upper echelon? We'll find out this weekend when they face a Patriots offense that has been remarkably balanced and diverse this season. New England is running the hide off the ball, creating a great complement to that tight-end driven passing attack. The Seahawks (3-2) are currently ranked second in the league defensively by SI and held Cam Newton in check last week. The Pats, however, pose a test of an entirely different magnitude. We'll learn a lot about Seattle this weekend.

4. Is Indy even remotely for real? The Colts beat Green Bay last week in an emotional game. Can they continue that climb with a win over the Jests? New York is playing well defensively so it won't be easy.

 
October 13, 2012  06:39 PM ET

to #3 hell yeah

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