Michael McKean is an experienced writer with a portfolio that includes work on the subjects of sport, gambling, travel and finance. With a background rooted in journalism, Michael first ventured into the professional writing world based in Switzerland, where he wrote for a number of language and travel sites and magazines before moving into the world of sports writing and gambling sites.
As an avid soccer fan, who follows everything from the Scottish lower leagues to the European elites, he has earned himself a solid reputation as a reliable football betting tipster and predictor. Outside of work, Michael has always gotten involved with grassroutes football everywhere he has worked and lived - UK, Spain, Portugal, Switzerland and Brazil - and still isn’t shy when it comes to pulling the boots on himself. As well as soccer, he has also developed a love of North American sports, particularly ice hockey - a love which began in Switzerland and saw him venture across the pond to follow the NHL. Moving away from dry land, he’s also a keen longboard surfer and is happiest when writing with a view of the ocean.
The first two weeks of the NFL haven’t been short of thrills and spills across both divisions. The NFC North was winless through week one but the Packers have rebounded to face an unbeaten 49ers team. The two longest-tenured NFL head coaches face off and an inter-divisional rivalry that may show fans a glimpse of who will sit atop come January. Here are the most important matchups to watch in week three of the NFL.
Green Bay Packers at San Francisco 49ers
As previously mentioned, the Green Bay Packers were winless entering their week two divisional matchup with the Detroit Lions. They rebounded from their dismal showing against the New Orleans Saints with a 35-17 win on Monday Night Football at Lambeau Field. The Packers’ rebound coincided with Aaron Rodgers’ resurgence against the Lions who threw for four touchdowns and led his team to victory.
As for the San Francisco 49ers, they have had an unbeaten start to NFL proceedings this season. After being injury hit in 2020, the 49ers look back to their best with impressive victories over the Detroit Lions and the Philadelphia Eagles. The only question mark for San Francisco is Arik Armstead. The solid defensive tackle hasn’t practiced through Wednesday but he should be ready for Sunday.
New Orleans Saints at New England Patriots
The two longest-tenured head coaches in the NFL faceoff on Sunday. Bill Belichick, head coach since 2001, and Sean Payton, head coach since 2006, will meet for only the third time during the regular season. Both teams have split wins during their other regular-season encounters but veterans Drew Brees and Tom Brady won’t be under center for either team.
The New Orleans Saints made Jameis Winston the heir to Drew Brees before the season began. The former Buccaneers quarterback started well with a five-touchdown game against the Green Bay Packers. However, he was disappointing in week two. He threw two interceptions against the Carolina Panthers as the New Orleans Saints began the season 1-1.
The New England Patriots are also 1-1 with a new face at quarterback. Alabama rookie Mac Jones is the starter in New England and he has impressed through two weeks. Though they lost in week one, the new Patriots quarterback completed 29/39 passes and a touchdown. In week two, Jones continued his steady rise as he threw for 22/30 passes with an over 70% completion percentage.
Both sides have had polarising beginnings in the 2021 season. But which head coach will come out on top and make their team 2-1?
Philadelphia Eagles at Dallas Cowboys
Two interdivisional rivals lock horns on Monday Night Football in the wide-open NFC East. Both the Cowboys and Eagles are 1-1 after two weeks so a win on Monday could give either team the chance to take control of their division for the remainder of the season.
The Philadelphia Eagles opened the season with a 32-6 victory over the Atlanta Falcons. Jalen Hurts shone at quarterback against the Falcons but rookie Devonta Smith stole the headlines with his first NFL touchdown on his first play. As for week two, the Eagles weren’t as impressive offensively in a 17-11 defeat. The interdivisional match on Monday is crucial for the Eagles to get back to winning ways and prove themselves as possible division winners.
The Dallas Cowboys have started similarly to the Eagles. They lost a tight game to the Super Bowl champions in the season opener but turned it around in week two. The Cowboys visited So-Fi Stadium in their second road game against the Los Angeles Chargers and sealed the victory through a Greg Zuerlein kick. After missing the playoffs last season, the Cowboys will be hoping to win against their rivals and take the lead in the division.