We are down to just eight teams remaining in the hunt for the Lombardi Trophy. This weekend features four Divisional playoff games, two on Saturday and two on Sunday. With the Kansas City Chiefs, Philadelphia Eagles, Cincinnati Bengals, and Green Bay Packers already eliminated, there are only seven games remaining in these playoffs. It only takes three wins to be crowned champion.
The Seattle Seahawks had a great regular season, finishing tied with the Denver Broncos for best in the league at 13-3. As a matter of fact, it also tied for the best record in Seattle history; the 2005 Seahawks, who lost the Super Bowl to the Pittsburgh Steelers, are the only other Seattle team to finish with that mark. They earned the number one seed, first round bye, and homefield advantage for the NFC Playoffs. But even with all those impressive accomplishments, the success of this season rests on the next three games… If they are lucky enough to get that far.
Russell Wilson is 24-8 as a starting quarterback in the NFL. He has all the talent in the world. Between Wilson, Andrew Luck, Cam Newton, and Colin Kaepernick, there are plenty of young and talented quarterbacks left in the playoffs. Russell Wilson is one of the best in the NFL at avoiding the rush and making something out of nothing. Another thing that makes Wilson great is how clutch he is. The biggest moments are when he shines the brightest.
The Seahawks defense is probably the best in the league. Even with all of the suspensions, they still remain tough against the run, even better against the pass, and a threat to take the ball away on every play. They led the league in turnover differential. Overall, they are the most complete team in the league; but they are beatable.
The Seahawks only three losses came to very good teams. The Colts, 49ers, and Cardinals were the only teams who could take down the ‘Hawks. The 49ers and the Cardinals were able to win the time of possession battle, and by a pretty significant margin. The ’9ers held it for five minutes longer than Seattle; the Cards had over 37 minutes of possession compared to 23 for the Seahawks. The two teams who took Seattle to overtime also won the time of possession battle.
In Seattle’s three losses, they have converted on just nine of their 37 third-down chances. Keep Russell Wilson and Marshawn Lynch from finding momentum. Get your defense off the field on third down. This goes along with the time of possession. If you let them extend drives, your defense will not be able to keep up with theirs in the fourth quarter. Win the battles on the early third-downs, set the tone of the game.
Stay committed to running the football. The Colts were the only team to beat Seattle while having fewer rushing attempts than the Seahawks. Seattle only had five more carries than Indy, so they at least kept it close. As I said earlier, Seattle’s pass defense is even better than their run defense, so run the ball.
(Keys to Beating the New Orleans Saints) (Keys to Beating the San Francisco 49ers) (Keys to Beating the San Diego Chargers) (Keys to Beating the Indianapolis Colts) (Keys to Beating the Cincinnati Bengals) (Keys to Beating the Kansas City Chiefs) Keys to Beating the Philadelphia Eagles) (Keys to Beating the Green Bay Packers)