In a battle for NFC supremacy, the Saints and Seahawks will be thinking about playoff tiebreakers and home-field advantage, even though it's early.
How will Buffalo welcome back Willis McGahee? How will he respond? It's the subplot that will draw the most attention.
The Mike Tomlin era in Pittsburgh will be well under way by late October, but it will get an acid test against division foe Cincinnati.
In January, Patriots defenders wilted in the RCA Dome heat, lost to the Colts and missed the Super Bowl. Bill Belichick hasn't forgotten.
A week after playing the Patriots, the Colts have to face Tomlinson with their rebuilt defense. Advantage, Tomlinson.
Another game that could determine the postseason seeding in the NFC. If Bears QB Rex Grossman has made it this far, he must be doing OK.
Brian Billick will have to be at his best to navigate the Ravens through a three-week, playoff-like stretch, starting in San Diego.
Adalius Thomas returns to Baltimore with the Patriots, but the Ravens still might have the better defense. They'll need it against Tom Brady.
One more chance for a statement game for the Ravens. They let the playoff game against the Colts get away last season; they won't want to let it happen twice.
The top seed in the NFC could be at stake here. If Donovan McNabb is healthy, the Eagles may be the favorites.
The Cowboys could be pushing for a playoff spot. Unless Joe Gibbs turns things around, the Redskins could be pushing him out the door.