Seahawks Insider

A pick …

Post by Todd Dybas / The News Tribune on Jan. 10, 2014 at 2:33 pm with 74 Comments »
January 10, 2014 8:54 pm

Let’s breakdown the units and make a pick.

Quarterback
It’s the better situation, not straight up better quarterback. Drew Brees had one of the worst games of his career just more than five weeks ago against the top-ranked Seattle defense. Russell Wilson will face a Saints defense that has lost its top player in the secondary since they were last here. He also tortured them the first time around.
Edge: Seahawks

Running back
Marshawn Lynch ran for 1,257 yards. The Saints ran for 1,473 yards, despite trying to run the ball more often at the close of the season and last week against the Philadelphia Eagles. This is a distinct advantage for Seattle’s power approach.
Edge: Seahawks

Wide receivers
The return of Percy Harvin levels this out for a Seahawks receiving squad which has been viewed as the soft spot on the team despite efficient production throughout the season. Marques Colston and Kenny Stills are complemented by running back Darren Sproles.
Edge: Saints

Tight end
Zach Miller has been to the Pro Bowl in the past, but it’s Jimmy Graham’s time now. Graham is arguably the best in the league, though his hands aren’t on the level of a Tony Gonzalez in his prime. Also, Seattle backup Luke Willson is still hobbled by a high ankle sprain. He’ll play, but be slowed.
Edge: Saints

Offensive line
A week of rest should help Seattle’s offensive line, notably left tackle Russell Okung who re-injured the toe that kept him out for eight weeks earlier in the season. The Saints’ line had trouble pass protecting the last time, but has improved in run blocking of late.
Edge: Seahawks

Defensive line
No Seahawk can approach the 12.5 sacks for Saints defensive end Cameron Jordan, but New Orleans has just five more sacks than the Seahawks. The Seahawks also have better packages specific to the run or pass.
Edge: Seahawks

Linebackers
The Saints have three solid ones Curtis Lofton, Junior Galette (12 sacks) and former Seahawk David Hawthorne (91 tackles). The Seahawks counter with Bobby Wagner (120 tackles), plus versatile Malcolm Smith and Bruce Irvin. Losing K.J. Wright is a blow for the Seahawks, but no a decisive one.
Edge: Even.

Defensive backs
An argument could be made either way for most of these other categories, but not here. Byron Maxwell is proving to be an upgrade over Brandon Browner and his three running mates were named All-Pro first or second team. Walter Thurmond is a starter anywhere else and merely a nickel back in Seattle.
Edge: Seahawks

Special teams
The Seahawks have the best punt coverage unit in the league and a kick return team that will get a boost from the return of Harvin. Steven Hauschka was the second-most accurate kicker in the league (94.3 percent); the Saints’ picked up veteran Shayne Graham three weeks ago, though he has been perfect (6-for-6) since.
Edge: Seahawks

Coaching
Sean Payton has won a Super Bowl, been an AP NFL coach of the year and is 6-3 in the postseason. Pete Carroll is 3-4 in his career in the playoffs, going 2-2 with the Seahawks. He still has things to prove. Payton does not.
Edge: Saints

Pick
Usually this is a spot to say something clever, but I’ll stick with simplicity: It won’t be close.

Seahawks 31, Saints 17

Here are our other staff picks:

Dave Boling, Columnist: Drew Brees and the Saints will be fired up to reverse December defeat, but it won’t be nearly enough. Seahawks 30, Saints 17

John McGrath, Columnist: Rematch won’t resemble the mismatch of Dec. 2, but the Saints are signing guys off the street for help in their secondary. Look for the Hawks to break it open late. Seahawks 27, Saints 16 

Darrin Beene, Sports Editor: The game will be closer than what you think, but the Seahawks will advance to the NFC Championship game. Seahawks 28, Saints 27

 

Leave a comment Comments → 74
  1. 28-10 Seahawks

  2. Sticking with 31-10 Seahawks

  3. I’m going with Seahawks 23-16 with the Saints putting in a late score to make the game look closer. The Seahawks are aided by several Saints turnovers.

  4. Bonus Sunday: Carolina 17-13

  5. MikeFromNewJersey says:

    Just win baby!!!!

  6. Hawks 27-24

  7. I hope the hawks and niners win, the niners come to town, Seattle gets the game out of hand, one of the backup safeties picks off Kaepernick, and scores, and Carroll goes for 2. Seahawks beat the niners 66-3

  8. seahawkNJ says:

    42-16 Hawks…Let’s roll baby!!!

  9. Woo hoo…just got the call…I’m going to the Game!

    GO HAWKS LIVE!!!

  10. GeorgiaHawk says:

    That’s more like it seahawkNJ.

  11. GeorgiaHawk, will Wilson cement his status as best quarterback to ever play the game?

  12. edstang45 says:

    I may be a homer…112-3 Hawks

  13. edstang45 says:

    66-3 Radeon……..yea baby…. is now my favorite poster

  14. GeorgiaHawk says:

    RADEoN- Wilson will cement his status when he wins MVP of the Super Bowl as one of the best young QBs to ever play the game.

    Agree?

  15. chuck_easton says:

    Well, if we are going to have to predict scores:

    3-2 Seahawks

    Harvin takes either the opening kick-off or the 2nd half kick-off return back to get Seattle into FG range. 3-0 Seattle.

    Game goes back and forth with neither offense able to move the ball.

    With :35 in the game and Seattle with the ball on Seattle’s 35 yard line and 4th and 15. Seattle elects to run out the clock instead of punting the ball and risking a big runback.

    Wilson runs around the field avoiding the tired defenders and is able to burn out the clock. Wilson then runs out the back of the endzone leaving the Saints no time to respond and no time to kick a FG.

    In other words if it was possible to get a 1/2 point I’d be fine with Seattle winning by .5 just as long as our team’s number is higher than theirs at final whistle.

  16. raymaines says:

    Sean Payton is the better game day play caller but I’m not sure he’s the better overall coach, and I’m very sure our D coordinator and our position coaches are better than their counter parts. Not so sure about the O coordinator though.

    I’m looking for a low scoring game that’s not as close as the score would indicate. A miserable 24-7 beatdown that ends with Seattle running out the clock.

  17. The OL edge definitely goes to NO, not SEA. SEA 27, NO 20.

  18. Seahawks take a comfortable lead in the third quarter, then play to run out the clock. A couple of late scores by the Saints makes the final score closer than it really is. Final score, 27-20 Seahawks.

  19. Just let Seattle have one more point than New Orleans when the game is over. That’s all I ask.

  20. GeorgiaHawk says:

    SI_DougFarrar @SI_DougFarrar
    Follow
    Richard Sherman had the lowest target percentage per snap of any NFL cornerback, and he still lead the league in picks. That’s stunning.

  21. “Richard Sherman had the lowest target percentage per snap of any NFL cornerback, and he still lead the league in picks. That’s stunning.”

    That is a great start I had not seen our heard before.

  22. Not a lot of love for the Hawks outside of the PNW (and Lake Havasu area?).

    http://msn.foxsports.com/nfl/laces-out/facebook-poll-reveals-where-nfl-fans-are-located-011014

  23. MikeFromNewJersey says:

    Pabuwal, seahawkNJ and myself. Three Seahawk fans from Jersey. I love it!!

  24. Just WIN Seattle!

    GO HAWKS!!!

  25. raymaines says:

    Obviously I’ll take any win the ‘Hawks come up with, but I’d sure feel better heading into next week if the O starts to function properly and they just bludgeon the Saints like I think they will.

  26. Dukeshire says:

    I second pabuwal’s prediction.

  27. montanamike2 says:

    Will i be able to sleep tonight?

  28. I’m with you fellers.

    Seahawks = W
    Saints = L

  29. Add another NJ Seahawk fan here! Cannot WAIT for this game tomorrow. GO SEAHAWKS!!

  30. seahawkNJ says:

    Sick. I didn’t know pabs was from NJ too. I better pay closer attention. Yes Radeon, best prediction all year. Btw, looks like Bowie starting LG tomorrow.

  31. GeorgiaHawk, if Wilson can string together 3 wins in a row, and do it convincingly, even when the running game and/or defense isn’t on the spot, I will call him the best quarterback in seahawks history.

  32. montanamike2 says:

    Man, this is the first time i’ve envied NJ guys, if we make the SB you guys get to go to the game.

  33. GeorgiaHawk says:

    RADEoN- Wilson already proved last year that he was the best QB in Seahawks history.
    Check out last years playoffs vs the Redskins and Falcons.

    How much more do you need to see?

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xiJ3jN-sjok

  34. montanamike2 says:

    The Best is yet to come!

  35. GeorgiaHawk says:

    I don’t think Elway or the great Montana ever did string together 3 wins in a row, convincingly, even when the running game and/or defense isn’t on the spot, much less any past Seahawk QBs.

    Especially in the playoffs.

  36. SeahawkNJ: “Btw, looks like Bowie starting LG tomorrow.”

    Curious where you got that from, NJ…?

  37. WiscCory says:

    I don’t care if it’s 2-0, as long as the Hawks win.

    However, for some reason I’m feeling like the Hawks will put up their first 50 point game of the season. :)

  38. GeorgiaHawk says:

    BTW-RADEoN ,
    name one other QB in NFL history that averages 12 wins a year, over 100 passer rating and 500 yards rushing a year.

    All that behind one of the worst O-lines in the NFL and an average receiving group to work with.

  39. montanamike2 says:

    I think both these rookies might be sticking with us next year.

  40. montanamike2 says:

    Bowie and Baily that is.

  41. MikeFromNewJersey says:

    @pfah -welcome my jersey brother. I live in essex county and only met a few hawks fans my entire life living here. But i was very impressed with the tuenout against the giants. I had alot of fun at that game.

    @georgia -pretty funny but i actually have a connection for SB tix and am going. Im not even thinking about the possibilty

  42. seahawkNJ says:

    No link…rookie mistake.

    https://twitter.com/davishsuseattle/status/421797000464433152.

    Looks like Bowie on the left side of the huddle with the 1’s. Makes sense and a good move IMO.

  43. seahawkNJ says:

    I was at that game too Mike. 12’s were deep. I’d trade 10 SB tix for one ticket to the NFC championship at the Clink.

  44. MikeFromNewJersey says:

    seahawkNJ-If you never been out there you should plan a trip, well worth i!

  45. Georgia, I definitely get the point, but I don’t subscribe to the passer rating argument. I think RW is the quarterback for THIS team, but if he doesn’t have the strong running game, and the defense, he would be consistently an 8-8 quarterback.

    Just look at the stats.

    Very concerned about the offense sputtering over the last few weeks, and it starts with the quarterback position.

  46. seahawkNJ says:

    Going next year for sure. Will try to hit Hawks/Giants. My wife is a huge Giants fan. I’m already excited for it.

  47. banosser says:

    SeahawkNJ: “Btw, looks like Bowie starting LG tomorrow.”

    Curious where you got that from, NJ…?

    me too?

    btw.. 27 – 16 Hawks

  48. MikeFromNewJersey says:

    You will be in heaven. My fiance is also a giants fan so i know that feeling.

  49. At least your wives/girlfriends are outside of the division. Otherwise I would put the over/under at 2 years. lol

    One thing is for sure regarding Wilson, he’s the best QB the Seahawks have ever drafted.

    Hawks 23-17

  50. WilliamPercival says:

    27-13 Hawkmania
    2 picks
    1 FR
    4 sacks
    1 Def TD
    2 Rush TD
    1 Percy TD
    2 Hausch Dimes
    1 Off TO off fumble
    12- noise level

  51. MoSeahawk12 says:

    This game features a great offense VS the #1 defense. The three phases of the game, Saints have the better offense, but we have the better defense and special teams. Throw in defensive genius coach Carroll VS offensive genius coach Payton. Another huge advantage is the home field fans and location.
    I’m feeling a win for our beloved Seahawks! I’m In!!

  52. MoSeahawk12 says:

    Jordan Hill out again. Dudes been hurt all season.

  53. “if he [Wilson] doesn’t have the strong running game, and the defense, he would be consistently an 8-8 quarterback.”

    Isn’t that true about EVERY quarterback? There aren’t any QBs better than 8-8 without a running game and defense. Peyton Manning was 6-10 when his team lacked a good defense.

  54. My girlfriend is a packers fan. Made the fail mary a big deal. Our hatred for the bears bonds us.

  55. seatowntp says:

    No rhetoric, just a win.

    Seahawks 27
    Saints 13

  56. Stevos, I guess I should have been more specific. This defense is elite. If they’re able to win the super bowl, it’s in the discussion for best ever, imo.

    If Sherman doesn’t pick six against the texans, that’s a loss.

    Same for the rams.

    I’m just not comfortable with the offense right now. They seemingly already peaked.

    And the same saints were playing tomorrow won the super bowl with the 20th ranked scoring defense.

    http://www.pro-football-reference.com/teams/nor/2009.htm

    We saw what happened to the texans last year. I’m very concerned that we’re going to see the same thing happen.

    I’m probably (hopefully) being excessively paranoid because I’m used to subpar play from key positions, but the last showings on offense, starting with Arizona, leave a lot to be desired.

    If any coach can blueprint from what the cardinals did, it’s Payton

  57. William, you are already at 28 pts before the “2 hausch dimes”.

  58. seaturkeys says:

    Seahawks 33 Saints 13
    Seahawks dominate time of possession.

  59. RADEoN, I’m with you on the paranoia as I think it’s par for the course for long-time fans. Certainly, NO can look at the AZ tape, but STL had that tape too and the Hawks managed a win against them.

    Looking back at AZ, Seattle was 2 of 13 on 3rd down and I think you have a different outcome if they even get to their season average (37%, from google). How much of 2/13 is execution and how much is play calling I don’t know, but looking at the game log:

    3 & 5, deep pass, incomplete
    3 & 3, deep pass, incomplete
    3 & 2, deep pass, complete
    3 & 6, short pass, complete
    3 & 8, short pass, incomplete
    3 & 12, short pass, incomplete
    3 & 1, deep pass, incomplete
    3 & 1, short pass, incomplete
    3 & 8, deep pass, incomplete
    3 & 8, deep pass, incomplete
    3 & 3, deep pass, incomplete
    3 & 8, sack (and Carp called for holding)
    3 & 12, sack

    So, thirteen third downs, two sacks (which I assume were probably going to be passes) and seven “deep” balls, and the rest “short” passes. And *no* Beast Mode. I get the “hey, don’t want to be predictable”, but in staying away from runs on “obvious” running situations (say, 3 and <5 which is roughly half of the 3rd down situations they were in), they got totally predictable. I wonder if this was just a case where they over-thought the play calling.

    Certainly, we can't know how many times the Hawks broke the huddle on 3rd intending to run only to have RW check out of the run play based on what the D was showing.

    Based on the winds and rain expected tomorrow, I gotta figure we won't see the repeated home run shots this time around and maybe that puts the offense in higher-percentage plays tomorrow.

    tw

  60. I’m going with 28 – 17 Hawks.

    I may have missed this with all the links earlier, but has anyone seen the Derrick Coleman commercial? Pretty cool, check it out….
    http://www.seahawks.com/videos-photos/videos/Derrick-Coleman-TrustYourPower-closed-captioned/7d52b3bb-cefb-4806-b010-cd247d4c6fac

  61. thanks jboard1 nice link. 28-6 hawks!!!!

    Go Percy
    Go Mike Rob
    Go DEFENCE
    GO HAWKS !!!!!!!

  62. seatowntp says:

    That Coleman commercial is excellent! I love it!

  63. RAD, yeah we all are a little bit nervous about the Seahawks O. I think the only thing wrong with them is a very inexperienced offensive line. Other than that, the Seahawks offense is every bit as good as the Ravens offense was last year, while the D and Teams are better. And Wilson is better than Flacco.

    You know we are going to kick the snot out of the Saints. Their Defensive front seven is not close to what the Cardinals or Rams put up against us. The Saints D is going to down at the C-Link tomorrow.

  64. Dukeshire says:

    Aside from Sweezy, who are the “inexperienced” o linemen? Aside from him, they are anything but inexperienced in the NFL.

  65. This is the third year Okung, Giacomini, McQuistan and Unger have played together.

    “According to research compiled by Chase Stuart of Footballperspective.com, the 2013 Seahawks boast one of the top five pass defenses of the last 64 years — and the second-best since the 1970 merger.

    Dan Quinn’s defense is just the fourth in history to rank No. 1 in interceptions and passing yards allowed. The other three wound up in the Super Bowl.”

  66. All due respect my Brothers, but Okung, Giacomini, and Unger do not play “together”.

    They each play next to guards, and those guards are either rotating in and out of the game (Carp, McQ) or are inexperienced and still learning the craft (Carp, Sweezy).

    Great zone blocking lines have continuity and footwork in synch between the guards and the players next to them. Not because the guards are all pros, but because of the coordination. That takes continuity together, and that’s what I mean by experience.

  67. SnakeDoctor says:

    Worst case – The only way for a Saints win is to jump out early (silence the 12th man) and they jump out to a 27 – 7 lead. Wilson brings back the hawks and win on last second field goal. 31-30.

    How I really feel based on this team. We don’t allow them to get the momentum and cruise to a 42 – 17 win.

    Go Hawks !

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