What To Look For In Week 3 of the 2010 NFL Season

You have probably already read our NFL week 3 picks and predictions and entered our Beat the House contest, but those are both subjective. Here are some interesting facts as we head into the third round of the 2010 NFL Season that may add to your viewing enjoyment:

History shows that 0-2 teams advance to the playoffs more often than people might think. Since the current playoff format was instituted in 1990, 22 teams started 0-2 and still qualified for the postseason.

The 1993 Dallas Cowboys started 0-2 before winning Super Bowl XXVIII. The 0-2 New England Patriots of 1996 played in Super Bowl XXXI, and in 2001, the 0-2 Patriots won Super Bowl XXXVI. Most recently, the 2007 New York Giants started 0-2 before winning Super Bowl XLII.

In the NFL, there is little room for error. One play can mean the difference between winning and losing, as games are often decided by the slimmest of margins – especially in 2010. Close games have been a theme for the league after the first two weeks of play. In fact, 19 of the 32 games (59.4%) have been decided by seven points or fewer, the most at this point of the season in NFL history.

With some excellent matchups slated for Week 3, games should continue to be thisclose. If eight games are decided by seven-or-fewer points this weekend, the 2010 season will feature the most ever seven-points-or-fewer games through the first three weeks, topping the 1988 season, which had 26 such games.

New York Jets running back LA DAINIAN TOMLINSON has recorded 180 scrimmage yards (138 rushing, 42 receiving) in the first two games of the season, upping his career totals to 12,628 rushing yards and 3,997 receiving yards. This Sunday against Miami, Tomlinson needs three receiving yards to become the fifth player in NFL annals to record 12,000 rushing yards & 4,000 receiving yards.

Last week, Detroit Lions running back JAHVID BEST became the first rookie in NFL history with at least 75 rushing yards, 150 receiving yards and three touchdowns in a single game. In his first two games, Best has amassed 268 yards from scrimmage (98 rush, 170 receiving) and leads the NFL with five touchdowns (four rush, one receiving). With two touchdowns against the Minnesota Vikings this Sunday, Best would become the first player in NFL history to record seven touchdowns in his first three career games.

Through the first two games of the 2010 season, San Diego Chargers tight end ANTONIO GATES has 10 receptions for 133 yards and three touchdowns, tied for first in the AFC. Gates, who has 62 career receiving touchdowns, needs one touchdown catch this week to surpass SHANNON SHARPE for second-most touchdown receptions by a tight end in NFL history. Atlanta Falcons tight end TONY GONZALEZ ranks first with 82.

NFL teams will host community events and gameday celebrations throughout Hispanic Heritage Month (September 15- October 15). This week, 15 clubs – Arizona, Baltimore, Carolina, Chicago, Denver, Houston, Jacksonville, Kansas City, Miami, Minnesota, New England, New Orleans, New York Giants, St. Louis and Tampa Bay – will participate.

The NFL’s celebration of Hispanic Heritage Month will feature a series of special events surrounding the two primetime games in Week 3. The NFL, Telemundo and NBC Sports will broadcast the Sunday Night Football contest between the New York Jets and Miami Dolphins (8:20 PM ET, NBC) in both English and Spanish, with Telemundo airing its first-ever Sunday Night Football game on its New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Dallas and Miami stations. The festivities will continue with Monday Night Football as the NFL, ESPN and ESPN Deportes will team to show the game featuring the Green Bay Packers and Chicago Bears (8:30 PM ET, ESPN and ESPN Deportes).

In Miami, five-time Grammy award-winning singer and Dolphins limited partner MARC ANTHONY will sing the national anthem along with fellow Dolphins limited partner FERGIE of The Black Eyed Peas. International superstar ENRIQUE IGLESIAS will perform at halftime, and will be introduced by Dolphins limited partner and seven-time Grammy-award winner GLORIA ESTEFAN.

Many NFL teams will designate their home games in the next several weeks in honor of the month with in-stadium festivities.

Did you know the TMR Zoo has a few NFL-related contests running right now? You can win a football autographed by Lions’ QB Matthew Stafford by simply guessing the Thanksgiving game score. You can also win a DVD prize packs, a Nerf Pro Grip Football or a Jagermeister Cooler in our exclusive Beat the House contest, where you go toe-to-toe with our in-house football expert. We’ve already awarded some great prizes so far this season, so give it a shot!