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Biggest Week 8 NFL questions, stats and predictions

Taking a spin around the NFL to get you ready for Week 8:

The big questions

Can Brock Osweiler get going against the Detroit Lions?

Here's a look at where Osweiler ranks in several statistical categories seven games into his tenure as the starting quarterback for the Houston Texans:

There's no way to sugarcoat it. The Texans' decision to sign Osweiler to a four-year, $72 million deal is looking like a complete disaster, especially considering the other talent they have on the offensive side of the ball.

If Osweiler can't turn things around against the Lions, all hope might be lost. Opponents have completed 74.2 percent of their passes against the Lions this year with a passer rating of 117.2 and a QBR of 83.8. All three numbers rank last in the NFL.

Can the Buffalo Bills slow down Tom Brady?

Since returning from suspension, New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady has thrown eight touchdowns and no interceptions. He has a passer rating of 132.6 and a QBR of 92.0 during the three-week span -- all victories. Both marks are tops in the NFL.

The Patriots' weakness has been their pass defense, which ranks 25th, according to Football Outsiders. With LeSean McCoy doubtful, this is a tough spot for the Bills. Tyrod Taylor will have to hit on a number of big plays in the passing game to keep it competitive.

The Bills are 6.5-point underdogs at home.

How will the matchup between rookie quarterbacks Dak Prescott and Carson Wentz play out?

Last week against the Minnesota Vikings, the Eagles' Wentz delivered the type of performance that's typical of a rookie quarterback going up against a great defense. The first few weeks of the season didn't mean he was headed for the Hall of Fame. And the last few don't mean he's overrated.

Wentz has shown everything the Philadelphia Eagles could want in a franchise quarterback, but there are going to be growing pains, especially considering his below-average supporting cast on offense.

Prescott, meanwhile, has seemed to avoid those growing pains for the time being. He ranks near the top of the pack in just about every statistical category.

Prescott will be facing an Eagles defense that ranks first in DVOA through seven weeks. With a win, the Dallas Cowboys would have a two-game lead over the Eagles in the NFC East. Dallas is a five-point favorite.

Numbers that matter

11: The number of sacks the Atlanta Falcons have produced in the past three weeks, second most in the league. Their sack rate (8.1 percent) is fourth best over that span. The Falcons' pass rush was a major question mark coming into the season, but it's improved, and Vic Beasley Jr. is up to 6.5 sacks. The defense still has struggled (26th overall), but pressuring Aaron Rodgers on Sunday will be crucial. The Falcons are three-point favorites at home against the Green Bay Packers.

6: The number of San Diego Chargers games that have been decided by one possession this season. They lost the first four but won the past two and would suddenly be at .500 (4-4) with a win over the Denver Broncos. Despite a lackluster supporting cast, Philip Rivers is averaging 8.24 yards per attempt (fourth), has a passer rating of 102.4 (sixth) and is third in QBR (76.3). The Chargers play the Broncos for the second time in three weeks and are 4.5-point underdogs.

19.7: The percentage of Carolina Panthers' offensive possessions that have ended with a turnover. That ranks 31st, ahead of only the New York Jets. Last year, they were 10th (10.3 percent). The Panthers need to improve in a number of areas, but taking care of the ball against an Arizona Cardinals defense that has played well will be critical.

What we'll be talking about after Week 8

Minnesota's offensive struggles: The offensive line looked terrible last week against the Eagles, and the Vikings rank 32nd in rushing efficiency. The Chicago Bears are mediocre defensively, but Sam Bradford has never shown the ability to carry an offense under difficult circumstances. The Vikings' defense should be good enough to lead them to a win over the Bears, but if they want to make serious noise in the NFC, they need to find answers on the other side of the ball.

The Cleveland Browns' first victory: This game features the worst (Browns) and second-worst teams (Jets) in the league, according to Football Outsiders. At 0-7, this is Cleveland's best opportunity for a victory. Hue Jackson's squad pulls off the upset as three-point underdogs at home.

A Saints win over the Seahawks: Offensively, Russell Wilson is dealing with his third injury (right pectoral) in six games, and the Seattle Seahawks likely will be going with a backup rookie free agent at left tackle. Defensively, they'll be without their most disruptive defensive lineman, Michael Bennett (knee). The New Orleans Saints' offense, meanwhile, is averaging 29.33 points per game (second best). Drew Brees & Co. pull off the upset as 2.5-point underdogs at home.