Thursday night features two NFC teams fighting for their playoff hopes facing off in what could be huge for playoff implications moving forward. The Packers lead the all time series 11-7, and the Packers have won the last 3 matchups by a combined 46 points.
The Packers defeated the Dolphins this past week 31-12. In week 8, they were outlasted by the Rams 29-27, and were handled by the Patriots 31-17 in week 9. The Seahawks fell 36-31 to the Rams on Sunday. In week 8, they handled the Raiders 27-3, and lost 25-17 to the Chargers in week 9.
Bovada has the opening line as -2 in favour of the Seahawks.
Green Bay Packers
The Packers are not quite in desperation mode yet, but have to be feeling the heat with the Bears and Vikings seemingly not giving any ground in the division. Aaron Rodgers is still the engine of this offense, and has thrown for 2741 yards and 17 TDs to just 1 interception. Davante Adams has been his go to receiver, and Adams has 62 catches for 787 yards and 9 TDs on the year, while rookie Marquez Valdes-Scantling has come on strongly catching 23 balls for 402 yards and 2 TDs thus far. Aaron Jones has assumed full control of the running back position, rushing 73 times this season for 495 yards and 4 TDs.
The Packers defense has been solid this season. They are in the top 10 in passing yards allowed at just 225 per game, and have given up 14 TDs through the air. They are average against the run, allowing 120.9 yards per game on the ground, and have allowed 9 TDs on the ground. They are also middle of the pack in turnovers, picking off 6 passes and recovering 5 fumbles this year, but lead the league (tied) with 31 sacks.
Injuries and Inactive Watch
S Kentrell Brice (ankle) – questionable, EDGE Nick Perry (knee) – questionable, CB Bashaud Breeland (groin) – questionable
The Seahawks are fighting for their playoff hopes at this point after defeat by the Rams, as they have almost no chance of winning the NFC West and are outside looking in right now at the Wild Card. Russell Wilson has been dialed back big time as the Seahawks are attempting to run a 1980’s offense, reliant almost fully on the ground. The problem is, running doesn’t win you games. They have a top-flight quarterback in Wilson, but he has only thrown for 1967 yards, but has 21 TDs and just 5 interceptions. The Seahawks run game has been a juggernaut, between Chris Carson, Mike Davis, Wilson and Rashaad Penny, they are averaging over 150 yards per game on the ground this year, which is good for best in the league. Tyler Lockett is their leading receiver with 33 catches, 483 yards, and 7 TDs on the year.
The Seahawks defense has been pretty good as well, ranking top 5 in yards allowed through the air at 218.5 per game and have allowed 12 TDs. They are middle of the pack in run defense, allowing 118.6 yards per game and 7 TDs on the year. They have turned teams over well, picking off 10 passes and recovering 6 fumbles to go along with 23 sacks.
Injuries and Inactive Watch
RB Chris Carson (hip) – questionable
The Seahawks defense is a capable unit, but will struggle to generate pressure on Rodgers, which is a huge concern. Their only real cover guy is Shaquill Griffin, who will spend a lot of the game on Davante Adams, but Rodgers will still find ways to get his guy involved as well as Jimmy Graham (revenge game alert) and Marquez Valdes-Scantling. Aaron Jones just had a huge day and could carry that confidence into a matchup with an average run defense.
Seattle is going to commit to the run. The Packers need some big plays on 3rd downs to get off the field to avoid long drives and get the ball back to #12. The Packers do have some solid cover guys, and the Jaire Alexander-Tyler Lockett matchup should be fun. Seattle is going to have to be creative against an innovative defensive playcaller in Mike Pettine who will have things dialed up to slow down Russell Wilson. All in all, I think Rodgers and the Pack have more playmakers on both sides of the ball and win outright here.
Final Pick: Packers (+2)