Seattle Seahawks (11-5) at Green Bay Packers (13-3)
Sunday, January 12th, 6:40 pm EST.
This is a tough one. The Packers come in at 13-3 with Aaron Rodgers looking as good as he has in years. Or does he? The Seahawks looked as good as any team in the league halfway through the season, but now they’re limping in without any of their top three running backs. That’s a problem for the league’s fourth-best rushing attack.
Much has been made of Aaron Rodgers lack of targets this season, but the team is staying in manageable situations, and Rodgers is getting them over the line. That said, the Packers aren’t particularly great at anything. Total offense? Eighteenth in the league. Total defense? Eighteenth. Passing offense? Seventeenth. Rush defense? Twenty-third. You get the point.
Sometimes, teams aren’t quite as good as their record, or have a fatal flaw (See: Patriots, New England). I suspect that Green Bay is just such a team. They’ve won games because in most instances, they have the better of the two quarterbacks in a close game. In fact, Green Bay has the worst point differential of the three 13-3 NFC teams at +63. The Saints and Niners were both well over +100 for the season.
In this one, however, they’ll face a Seahawks unit with a quarterback in Russell Wilson who’s pulled off just as many miracles as A-Rod, despite losing the last two regular season games. D.K. Metcalf went off in Seattle’s wildcard weekend win over Philadelphia, and I expect to see more of the same in this one.
Prediction: Metcalf becomes a red zone nightmare for Green Bay’s defense, hauling in two TDs and well over 100 yards. Green Bay settles for a few field goals early and comes up just short in the final minutes.
Seattle 21 – Green Bay 20
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Image Source: AP Images