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Sunday's Must-Watch NFL games

By Dave "Deuce" Mason

1. 49ers (6-2) vs. Panthers (5-3)-1 p.m.-A lot of people are talking about Carolina as the Panthers face their biggest challenge of the season in San Francisco.  You have two great defenses and two exciting quarterbacks.

Kaep vs. Newton and the Panthers strong run defense vs. one of the best rushing attacks in the NFL.

What's not to like about this one?

2. Cowboys (5-4) vs. Saints (6-2)-5:30 p.m.-The Sunday night game is the perfect game to cap off the football weekend. Former Cowboys defensive coordinator Rob Ryan is now the Saints defensive coordinator.

Cowboys owner Jerry Jones on his weekly radio show in Dallas said he fired Ryan because he wanted his defense to be "less aggressive."

The Saints were the worst defensive team in the NFL last season and Ryan has transformed the unit into one of the most improved in the NFL.  Meanwhile, the Cowboys defense has struggled.

Ryan has had this game circled on the calendar for sometime so expect him to show Jones why it was a mistake to fire him. This game could turn into a shootout but Brees and company should be able to get the home win

3. Lions (5-3) vs Bears (5-3)-10 a.m.-Good news for the Bears: Jay Cutler is back. Bad news for the Bears: the defense still isn't good. This should be a high-scoring affair and it's a huge game for both teams in the race for the NFC North.

Lions head coach Jim Schwartz told reporters this week that this game is "pivotal" while Bears first-year head coach Marc Trestman took a difference stance.

Trestman said this game is not more important than any other game on the schedule. Huh?

These two teams combined for 72 points in the Lions week four win in Detroit.

Honorable Mention-Monday Night Football

4. Dolphins (4-4) vs. Bucs (0-8)-Florida football teams are having a rough year. Jacksonville is 0-8, the Bucs locker room is a mess, and the Dolphins have had to spend the whole week dealing with the Richie Incognito-Jonathan Martin situation.

How many camera shots will we see of the Dolphins offensive line on the sideline?  Who will get more camera time: Dolphins head coach Joe Philbin or Bucs head coach Greg Schiano?

This has the makings of a weird game and don't be surprised if Tampa Bay is able to get its first win of the season over a team that may be a bigger mess right now.

Best part about these must-see games? They do not conflict with each other.

Sunday Snack

Oven-baked Sweet Potato Fries—Go to the store and buy two sweet potatoes. Peel those bad boys, chop them up however you like, throw them in a bowl with some olive oil, cayenne pepper and other seasonings you like.

Throw the potatoes on a baking sheet and pop them in the oven for about 30 minutes (check after 15 minutes).

Underrated condiment with the sweet potato fries is a mix of mayo and sriracha chili sauce.

You can thank me later.

You can hear Deuce weekdays from 12-3 p.m. on KHTK Sports 1140 with Jason Ross. Follow him on twitter: @deucemason.

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