On Sunday, the Seattle Seahawks look to get into the playoffs for the 6th consecutive year by defeating the visiting Arizona Cardinals and getting some help from the Carolina Panthers. Unfortunately, the Seahawks play a divisional foe that has won in Seattle 3 out of the last 4 years. So, this game will not be a cakewalk for a desperate Seahawks team. Kickoff inside CenturyLink Field is at 4:25 PM ET.
The Arizona Cardinals and the Seattle Seahawks will meet for the 38th time this weekend. Each team has won 18 games apiece and one tie between them. Seattle holds a slim 10-9 home record over the Cardinals. The Seahawks defeated Arizona in their first game of the season by a score of 22-16.
The Cardinals (7-8) are 2-5 on the road, but have won 3 of their last 5 overall games. They’re playing solid defensive football and Drew Stanton has returned to the starting QB position. Last weekend, the Cardinals defeated the Giants 23-0 and look to extend their recent winning ways in Seattle by eliminating Seattle from playoff contention this weekend.
Seattle (9-6) is 4-3 at home this year, which is a bit of a down year for them. They look to beat the Cardinals this weekend and take one step closer to making the playoffs. Seattle beat Dallas last weekend in what was essentially a playoff elimination game. Seattle’s defense played their best game in nearly a month and they look to do the same this weekend. If the Seahawks beat the Cardinals, and the Panthers beat the Falcons, then Seattle will be in the playoffs for the 6th straight year.
The spread opened with Seattle favored by 7 points and it has gone up to 9.5 points. The Over/Under opened at 41 points, but it has come down to 38.5 total points.
Seattle is 17-7 at home over the last 3 years and they need a big defensive performance this weekend to close out the 2017 regular season at home. With playoff hopes on the line, Seattle should have enough talent on both sides of the ball to beat an average Arizona Cardinals team.
Coming into this matchup, it’s safe to say that injuries have derailed the potential for both teams. For Arizona, they lost their top running back and starting QB. For the Seahawks, they lost half of their Legion of Boom. But, Seattle has been able to stay in playoff contention despite these losses. Unfortunately, Arizona was eliminated a few weeks ago.
I believe this game will be close until late in the 4th when Seattle pulls away. This game will catapult Russell Wilson back into the MVP mix as he will deliver a magical performance to lead his team to victory. Despite having a decent running back in Mike Davis, Wilson still leads the Seahawks in rushing yards with 550. I expect him to make big plays with his legs this weekend as he picks up crucial 1st downs and extends drives. I wouldn’t be surprised if he scored his 4th rushing TD this weekend. Arizona only allows 88.9 rushing ypg, which means that they should shut down Mike Davis. This is exactly why Wilson will have to pick up most of the team’s rushing yards on Sunday.
Through the air, Wilson has 3,762 passing yards this season. He’s also thrown 32 touchdowns compared to just 11 interceptions. I expect Wilson to get at least 250 passing yards against Arizona this weekend as the Cardinals are giving up 238.3 passing ypg. This will push Wilson’s season total over the 4,000 yard mark. Don’t be surprised if Wilson also throws for 2 TDs with one or both of them being to TE Jimmy Graham who is a touchdown machine for Seattle.
On offense, Arizona only averages 84.7 rushing ypg. They’ve had a rotation of running backs all season long ever since David Johnson went out in Week 1. Although Seattle gives up 113.9 rushing ypg, I don’t see Arizona cracking the 100 yard mark this weekend. That means the battle for victory will come down to Stanton versus the Seahawks pass defense.
On the season, Seattle allows 231.4 passing ypg and 20.4 ppg. However, they played a great game last weekend holding Dallas to just 182 passing yards and forcing two interceptions. I see them having a similar performance this weekend, but I do see Stanton throwing at least one TD against Seattle unlike Prescott last weekend. Arizona struggles to put up points on the board as they only score 17.9 ppg. In their last road game, at Washington a few weeks ago, Arizona was only able to muster up 15 points which was the result of 5 field goals.
This weekend, I don’t see Arizona scoring more than their average of 17 points. I see Seattle pulling away late and putting this game out of reach with a late touchdown pass from Wilson to Graham. Seattle’s defense will put pressure on Stanton all game long and force a few turnovers, while shutting down the AZ run game. Seattle seemed to wake up last weekend and I expect them to continue their newfound defensive momentum. Look for Seattle to win 27-17 over the Cardinals.
Arizona is 8-16-1 ATS in their last 25 games, 1-6 ATS in their last 7 road games, 2-4-1 ATS in their last 7 games against Seattle, 3-7 ATS versus NFC opponents this year, and 5-14 ATS in their last 19 game against teams with a winning record. Seattle is 6-3 ATS in their last 9 games against teams with a losing record during the last half of the season.