There has been a lot of bad football in the first half of the NFL season, but at least the games have been competitive.

In fact, a near-record number have been decided by seven points or fewer. The 56 one-score games through seven weeks is second only to 57 to start the 2012 season.

MORE: Week 8 NFL Power Rankings

Thursday’s game (8:25 p.m. ET, NFL Network) between the Jaguars (2-4) and Titans (3-4) to kick off Week 8 may not be a marquee matchup, but history shows it should be competitive. Their past six meetings have been decided by one score.

Jaguars quarterback Blake Bortles has struggled this season, throwing for 1,567 yards with nine touchdowns but with nine interceptions and two lost fumbles.

"I’ve got to continue to do what I’m doing — just better," Bortles said. 

Second-year Titans quarterback Marcus Mariota has also shown a proclivity for turnovers, with six picks and three fumbles to go with 1,604 yards and 12 touchdowns.

"Sometimes I'm trying to force a throw here or there where I shouldn't have," Mariota said. "I've just got to be better at some of those decisions and make them with the best of our team in mind."

WEEK 8 PICKS: Straight up | Against the spread

Sunday’s games begin in London for the second straight week as the Redskins (4-3) face the Bengals (3-4) at Wembley Stadium (9:30 a.m. ET, Fox).

It’s still baseball season in Chicago and Cleveland, for which Bears and Browns fans are thankful. The 0-7 Browns play the Jets (2-5) on Sunday, and the 1-6 Bears play host to the Vikings (5-1) on Monday.

The week's top games (all times Eastern):

Patriots (6-1) at Bills (4-3), 1 p.m. Sunday (CBS)

The Patriots will attempt to avenge their only loss, but this time they have Tom Brady.

He was serving a four-game suspension when the Bills won 16-0 on Oct. 2 in Foxborough, the first time the Patriots had been shut out at home since 1993.

Brady has been red-hot since his return, throwing for 1,004 yards and eight touchdowns with no interceptions in three games. The Bills counter with NFL sacks leader Lorenzo Alexander, who has had at least one sack in each game.

The Bills had won four straight before Sunday’s 28-25 loss in which Dolphins running back Jay Ajayi ran for 214 yards and a touchdown. The Bills now face LeGarrette Blount, coming off a 127-yard, two-touchdown performance against the Steelers, and New England’s sixth-ranked rush offense.

"I don't know how much more important it could be than this one," Bills coach Rex Ryan said. "I could lie to you and say it's not important, but this is a critical game for us. There's no doubt about it. Does it break your season if you lose? I hope I don't have to worry about that."

Chargers (3-4) at Broncos (5-2), 4:05 p.m. Sunday ET (Fox)

The Broncos remain even with the Raiders atop the AFC West and hope to avenge a Week 6 loss to the Chargers.

The Bolts finally have some life after consecutive wins over the Broncos and Falcons. Running back Melvin Gordon is giving the Chargers the productivity they were hoping for when he was taken in the first round of the 2015 draft. The former Wisconsin star leads the NFL with 10 touchdowns, eight on the ground.

Things won’t come easy against Denver’s third-ranked defense, but Gordon ran for 94 yards on 27 carries in the 21-13 victory two weeks ago.

Packers (4-2) at Falcons (4-3), 4:25 p.m. Sunday ET (Fox)

Green Bay has won four straight over Atlanta, dating to a 48-21 win in the 2010 playoffs. Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers has feasted on the Falcons with a 69-percent completion rate while throwing for 1,746 yards with 12 touchdowns and one interception in five games.

The Falcons, hoping to snap a three-game slide, should have some success through the air. The Packers are thin at cornerback, and Atlanta receiver Julio Jones is having another stellar season (40 catches for a league-high 830 yards and four touchdowns). Packers coach Mike McCarthy called Jones’ 20.8 yards-per-reception average “outrageous.”

IYER: Packers should let Aaron Rodgers keep chucking

“We’re very well aware of what he’s capable of,” McCarthy said. “He has the whole package. He can beat you deep, he can beat you on the back-shoulder throw, he goes up and high-points the football. He gets out of breaks on crossing routes. Everybody wants to talk about the tale

nt, but he’s an accomplished route-runner.”

Eagles (4-2) at Cowboys (5-1), 8:30 p.m. Sunday (NBC)

The season's two best rookie quarterbacks square off at AT&T Stadium as Carson Wentz leads the Eagles against Dak Prescott and the Cowboys.

But it could be a different rookie who makes the difference. Running back Ezekiel Elliott has been the focal point of the Cowboys' offense and leads the NFL with 703 yards in six games, a league-high 117.2 yards per game.

The Eagles have the NFL’s fifth-best defense but are 14th against the run. That could spell doom for Philadelphia, which could face a no-win situation. If the Eagles stack the box to stop Elliott, Prescott could have success through the air. The Eagles' defense was impressive in handing the Vikings their first loss.