3 NFL teams in must-win mode for Week 3: Cardinals, Broncos desperate

NFL, Russell Wilson, Denver Broncos - Photo by Dustin Bradford/Getty Images
NFL, Russell Wilson, Denver Broncos - Photo by Dustin Bradford/Getty Images /
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I know it seems ridiculous to say a game in week three is a “must win”, but for three 1-1 teams, it’s as close as you can get before the frost gets on the pumpkin. There are a number of teams that would kill to be 1-1. The Bengals, Raiders, and Titans all sit winless and wondering, just two weeks in. All three were playoff teams last year but have hit the skids thus far in 2022. So, while 1-1 seems preferable, it doesn’t mean certain teams don’t absolutely NEED to win this week to either keep pace or to keep from crumbling under the weight of expectations.

Much is made of confidence and momentum, but suffice to say if you lose either early, things can fall apart quickly. That being said, 1-2 isn’t a death knell for the three following teams, but with the injuries and the teams in their respective divisions, if they don’t get on the plus side of the won/loss column, things could fall apart in short order.

3 NFL Teams in Must-Win Mode for Week 3

NFL, Arizona Cardinals, Kyler Murray – Photo by Chris Unger/Getty Images /

1. Arizona Cardinals

The Cardinals have been as disjointed a mess as any team in the NFL through two weeks, but why? The Cards got steamrolled opening week by Kansas City, but even in catch-up mode, Kyler Murray could never really get in a rhythm. Obviously, injuries have taken their toll, and the defense is as bad as any in the league, but Kyler Murray was supposed to be a difference maker.

Instead, you got a guy that fails to see open receivers from the pocket (when they actually get open) and seems to be hesitant to tuck and run. Part of Murray’s skillset is his mobility, but Kliff Kingsbury doesn’t seem to want to exploit these skills with designed rollouts and runs.

While the Cards took the Raiders to overtime for the win in Week 2, it was late in the game before Murray utilized his legs, despite losing James Conner early. I realize that Arizona is waiting on Hopkins to return, but Hollywood Brown has been pedestrian, AJ Green is just a myth, and Greg Dortch, while a nice story is just a guy.

Arizona needs Murray to put the team on his back, but I’m not sure if he can. A Week 3 loss to the smoking hot Eagles might be more than Arizona can withstand.