The (10-6) Seattle Seahawks will travel to Dallas to take on the (10-6) Cowboys, January 5th, 8:15 PM on Fox TV.
The Seahawks lost 4 games in pre-season and the first 2 games of the regular season before Pete Carroll decided to change the direction of his team. Seattle defeated the Cowboys in week 3, 24-13. They rushed for 113 yards in that game and they committed to the run for the rest of the season. They finished the season #1 in rushing offense, averaging over 159 yards per game.
Russell Wilson continues to be the most underrated quarterback in the NFL. The Former Wisconsin Badger threw for over 3,500 yards and had 35 touchdowns and 7 interceptions. WR, Tyler Locket had 10 touchdown passes. When Wilson throws to Locket, their completion percentage is over 81%. The Seahawks want to control the clock by running the ball. They use three running backs, but Chris Carson is their best runner on their roster. Carson averages 4.66 yards per rush and had over 1,100 yards and 9 touchdowns.
On defense, Seattle is good, not great. They finished 11th in the NFL giving up only 21.7 points per game. Bobby Wagner led the team with 138 tackles and Jarren Reed had 10.5 sacks. Shaquill Griffin is becoming a rising star at the defensive back position.
The Dallas Cowboys season turned around when they acquired WR, Amari Cooper from the Oakland Raiders. Cooper finished the season with 75 catches and 7 touchdowns passes. If there ever was a team that subscribed to the Bill Parcells coaching philosophy of “Run the ball and play good defense” it is the Dallas Cowboys. Ezekiel Elliott rushed for over 1400 yards and continues to be their number 1 and number 2 option. Dak Prescott threw for 3,885 yards and had 22 touchdown passes.
Defensively, the Cowboys were 5th against the run, and ranked 6th, giving up only 20.6 points per game. Rookie, Leighton Vander Esch, had 140 tackles and DeMarcus Lawrence had 10.5 sacks. Dallas has great team speed defense. Linebacker, Jaylon Smith had 121 tackles and is an absolute playmaker.
There are two things working for the Seahawks in this match-up. They have a better quarterback and a better coach. I had Carroll winning coach of the year for the job he has done this season.
Both teams want to control the clock and run the ball as much as possible. But the passing game will favor Seattle. Locket has become a big play wide receiver and Doug Baldwin almost never drops a pass thrown to him. The Cowboys are heading in the right direction, they will be a force for the next 5 years. But, take the Seahawks in a slight upset. Wilson will make plays in the 4th quarter.
Seahawks 24… Cowboys 20.
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