Three years ago, we began honoring radio legend Steve Czaban — who was surprisingly booted from the SB Nation Radio morning lineup in 2016, despite having perhaps the most engaging program in the radio marketplace — with a “You Are Looking Live!” preview of each NFL weekend.
The bit was so well-received, so roundly praised by media pundits (including a few SB Nation writers) and Czabe’s legion of fans alike, that we decided to make “You Are Looking Live!” a permanent Friday staple of the BATSBY Sports Network blog.
So, without further ado, here’s a print doppelganger to the best 60 minutes in sports radio — Hour #3 of Czabe’s NFL-heavy Friday show (heard daily from 4-7 p.m. in Washington D.C).
As such, it makes perfect sense to include Brent Musburger and Joey Porter into the presentation, via YouTube:
BALTIMORE (2-0) @ KANSAS CITY (2-0)
TIME: 1 p.m. EST
LINE: Chiefs (-5 1/2) Over/Under: 52
REFEREE: John Hussey
TV ANNOUNCERS: Ian Eagle, Dan Fouts, Evan Washburn (CBS)
FUN FACT: Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes has logged only 21 starts in his NFL career (including the playoffs), but we already have a decent book on the reigning MVP’s track record against the AFC North.
Last year, Mahomes posted staggering averages of 359 yards passing and 3.8 touchdowns versus that rugged division.
One more thing: It’s worth mentioning that Mahomes needed 53 pass attempts to help the Chiefs squeak past the Ravens last season — a notable hike from the 33 average pass attempts against the Steelers, Browns and Bengals.
DETROIT (1-0-1) @ PHILADELPHIA (1-1)
TIME: 1 p.m.
LINE: Eagles (-6) … Over/Under: 45.5
REFEREE: Tony Corrente
TV ANNOUNCERS: Thom Brennaman, Chris Spielman, Shannon Spake (FOX)
FUN FACT: Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford has notched an impressive streak of nine straight September road games with multiple touchdowns. During this prolific span, dating back to 2014, Stafford holds rock-solid averages of 301 yards passing and 2.9 TDs.
Here’s one more thing to celebrate: Excluding that nasty blizzard game from December 2013, Stafford has averaged 276 yards passing and 3.3 touchdowns in four career outings versus the Eagles.
ATLANTA (1-1) @ INDIANAPOLIS (1-1)
TIME: 1 p.m.
LINE: Colts (-1 1/2) … Over/Under: 47
REFEREE: Alex Kemp
TV ANNOUNCERS: Andrew Catalon, James Lofton (CBS)
FUN FACT: Falcons wideout Julio Jones has been on a tear in his last 13 games, averaging seven catches, 96 yards and 0.8 touchdowns during this supreme stretch.
Digging deeper, for that 13-game span, Jones registered 100-plus yards nine times, collected nine-plus targets 10 times and amassed 11 total touchdowns.
In fact, Jones has scored at least one TD in six straight outings (eight total).
MIAMI (0-2) @ DALLAS (2-0)
TIME: 1 p.m.
LINE: Cowboys (-22 1/2) … Over/Under: 47.5
REFEREE: Adrian Hill
TV ANNOUNCERS: Kevin Burkhardt, Charles Davis, Pam Oliver (FOX)
AT STAKE: The Dolphins defense currently owns top-5 tallies with targets and receptions allowed to opposing wideouts; and yet, these same receivers have a sterling catch-to-target rate of 70 percent … and have already found the end zone four times on just 19 receptions.
This all bodes well for Cowboys wideout Amari Cooper, who boasts stellar averages of seven catches, 109 yards and one touchdown in his last seven outings at home (including the playoffs); and that includes a 20-yard clunker against the Buccaneers last December.
N.Y. JETS (0-2) @ NEW ENGLAND (2-0)
TIME: 1 p.m.
LINE: Patriots (-22) … Over/Under: 43.5
REFEREE: Carl Cheffers
TV ANNOUNCERS: Kevin Harlan, Rich Gannon, Dana Jacobson (CBS)
VEGAS-STYLE RANT: The Jets have surrendered only 40 points this season, good for 14th place among NFL scoring defenses; and yet, the experts envision New York as a 22-point underdog against New England.
This has all the trappings of a sucker’s bet … unless the Patriots can hold a fourth straight regular-season foe to three or fewer points.
DENVER (0-2) @ GREEN BAY (2-0)
TIME: 1 p.m.
LINE: Packers (-7 1/2) … Over/Under: 42.5
REFEREE: Brad Rogers
TV ANNOUNCERS: Chris Myers, Darryl Johnston, Laura Okmin (FOX)
FUN FACT: On the surface, Aaron Rodgers’ short-term history against Vic Fangio-led defenses looks pedestrian, with the Packers star averaging only 244 yards passing and two TDs against the Bears from 2015-18.
But here’s the good news: For those seven encounters versus Fangio, Rodgers racked up three or more touchdowns four times.
OAKLAND (1-1) @ MINNESOTA (1-1)
TIME: 1 p.m.
LINE: Vikings (-9) … Over/Under: 43.5
REFEREE: Jerome Boger
TV ANNOUNCERS: Dick Stockton, Mark Schlereth, Jennifer Hale (FOX)
QUIRKY SCHEDULING: The Raiders won’t play in Oakland for the next six NFL weekends. The club’s treacherous slate begins with a two-game road swing in the Midwest (Minnesota, Indianapolis), a London ‘home’ game versus the Bears, a bye week and then back-to-back road outings against the Packers and Texans.
CINCINNATI (0-2) @ BUFFALO (2-0)
TIME: 1 p.m.
LINE: Bills (-6) … Over/Under: 44
REFEREE: Clete Blakeman
TV ANNOUNCERS: Tom McCarthy, Jay Feely (CBS)
AT STAKE: The unblemished Bills have quickly become the toast of Buffalo, relying on a stout defense, opportunistic rushing attack and playmaking quarterback in Josh Allen, who has tallied multiple touchdowns in four of his last five games.
TRIVIA TIME: Can you name the AFC East’s last non-Patriots team to start a season at 3-0?
Strange but true: The 2018 Dolphins won their first three outings … only to incur 10 double-digit-point defeats over the next 11 months.
CAROLINA (0-2) @ ARIZONA (0-1-1)
TIME: 4:05 p.m. EST
LINE: Cardinals (-2 1/2) … Over/Under: 44.5
REFEREE: Craig Wrolstad
TV ANNOUNCERS: Dan Hellie, Brady Quinn, Sarah Kustok (FOX)
DID YOU KNOW THAT … Kyle Allen (slated to start Sunday, if Cam Newton’s injured foot sidelines the former MVP) and Kyler Murray both transferred out of Texas A&M at roughly the same time in December 2015?
And now, the quarterbacks could be battling on the same field come Sunday.
You know, if the NFL had a dark sense of humor … the league would let former Texas A&M head coach Kevin Sumlin conduct the pre-kickoff coin toss.
N.Y. GIANTS (0-2) @ TAMPA BAY (1-1)
TIME: 4:05 p.m.
LINE: Buccaneers (-6) … Over/Under: 47.5
REFEREE: Bill Vinovich
TV: Kenny Albert, Ronde Barber, Tiki Barber, Sara Walsh (FOX)
HELLO, WORLD: The Giants waited only three weeks to tap Daniel Jones for his first NFL start.
Here’s our general rule with heralded rookie quarterbacks: Once you start ’em … there’s no turning back for a three-year period, barring injury.
So hopefully, Jones is up to the dual challenge of giving New York fans hope for the future, while also paying homage to his celebrated predecessor, Eli Manning, who apparently won’t be seeking a trade this year.
FUN FACT: It’s hard to find a flaw in Saquon Barkley’s fantasy game, short of the Giants coaches failing to get him 20-plus touches every Sunday.
Charting his four career outings on natural grass, Barkley boasts elite-level averages of 142 total yards and 0.8 touchdowns.
HOUSTON (1-1) @ L.A. CHARGERS (1-1)
TIME: 4:25 p.m. EST
LINE: Chargers (-3) … Over/Under: 48.5
REFEREE: Clay Martin
TV ANNOUNCERS: Spero Dedes, Adam Archuleta (CBS)
NEW ORLEANS (1-1) @ SEATTLE (2-0)
TIME: 4:25 p.m.
LINE: Seahawks (-4 1/2) … Over/Under: 44.5
REFEREE: Ron Torbert
TV ANNOUNCERS: Jim Nantz, Tony Romo, Tracy Wolfson (CBS)
AT STAKE: If the Seahawks, 49ers and Rams all hold serve this weekend, it will mark the first time in history that three NFC West clubs stood undefeated after three weeks.
PITTSBURGH (0-2) @ SAN FRANCISCO (2-0)
TIME: 4:25 p.m.
LINE: Niners (-6 1/2) … Over/Under: 43
REFEREE: Scott Novak
TV ANNOUNCERS: Greg Gumbel, Trent Green, Melanie Collins (CBS)
TRIVIA TIME: Can you name the last Steelers quarterback NOT NAMED Ben Roethlisberger to win a game in the state of California?
In 2015, Michael Vick engineered Pittsburgh’s 24-20 victory over the San Diego Chargers, despite completing only 13 or 26 passes (for one touchdown).
This would also mark Vick’s last road victory as a starting NFL quarterback.
L.A. RAMS (2-0) @ CLEVELAND (1-1)
TIME: 8:20 p.m. EST
LINE: Browns (+3) … Over/Under: 47.5
REFEREE: Shawn Smith
TV ANNOUNCERS: Al Michaels, Cris Collinsworth, Michelle Tafoya (NBC)
FUN FACT: The Browns haven’t been featured on NBC’s Sunday Night Football — TV’s top-rated primetime program in America for many years running — since September 2008.
To encapsulate how long that’s been …
**Sean McVay was an assistant coach for Jon Gruden’s Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
**Freddie Kitchens was the tight ends coach with the Arizona Cardinals.
**Quarterbacks Baker Mayfield and Jared Goff were in 8th- and 9th-grade, respectively.
One more thing: The four Browns QBs for 2008 (Derek Anderson, Brady Quinn, Bruce Gradkowski, Ken Dorsey) accounted for only 11 touchdown passes. Quite sad.
CHICAGO (1-1) @ WASHINGTON (0-2)
TIME: 8:30 p.m. EST
LINE: Redskins (+4) … Over/Under: 41
REFEREE: Walt Anderson
TV ANNOUNCERS: Joe Tessitore, Booger McFarland, Lisa Salters (ESPN)
WHOA, NELLIE: In the Daniel Snyder ownership era (1999-present), the Redskins have a 5-23 record when playing on Monday Night Football … highlighted by an inexplicable home mark of 1-16 during this span.