No knock on the Washington Redskins, Carolina Panthers, Dallas Cowboys, or Tampa Bay Buccaneers - OK, maybe a little knock on the Bucs - but the Nick Foles Development Thermometer will get a true high-temperature test Thursday against a big-boy NFL defense.
It should be interesting, and if Foles can perform competently and confidently against the Cincinnati Bengals, then the organization will know even more than it did after the rookie's four previous starts against lesser units.
The Bengals are ranked among the top dozen defenses in the league against both the pass and the run, and overall they are the sixth-ranked defense in the NFL. In real, not numerical terms, Foles will also have to deal with a defense that is the best around at bringing pressure on the quarterback. Cincinnati leads the NFL in sacks and has enough veteran tricks to make it a long game for an inexperienced quarterback.