By Jim Moore
After five weeks of predicting Seahawks’ outcomes, I’m 4-1 against the spread after correctly guessing that Seattle, as a 2.5-point underdog, would beat Carolina last week.
The Seahawks won 16-12 in a much lower-scoring game than my projected result of 34-24. I should have known there wouldn’t be many points scored by either team – every Seattle game has gone under the total this year.
This week’s over-under against New England is 44, and the Patriots are favored by 3.5 points.
It’s a classic matchup featuring the NFL’s best offense against the NFL’s best defense. The Patriots score 33 points a game; the Seahawks allow 14 points a game. The Patriots average 439 yards a game; the Seahawks allow 259 a game.
New England’s Tom Brady is a future Hall of Famer, but he hasn’t played a game in Seattle’s CenturyLink Field. (AP photo)
There’s also a lot of talk this week about New England’s no-huddle offense. The Patriots have become the Ducks of the NFL, running 97 plays last week against Denver. They’ve been highly effective, going three-and-out only twice all season and racking up more than 100 first downs in the last three weeks.
But the hell with those prolific numbers. And with all due respect, the hell with Tom Brady, too. While we’re at it, the hell with Bill Belichick and his hoodie. And the hell with New England this and New England that.
I’m sick of the Patriots. Everything about them makes me ill, particularly their constant winning. I can’t wait for Sunday. Well, actually, I can wait for Sunday – I can’t wait for Saturday night and the Coug game if I’m being totally honest. I think we’re going to beat Cal straight up as seven-point underdogs.
Here’s the thing about the Patriots: they’re perceived as invincible when they’re really not. We’re supposed to be in awe of them, and I wonder: “Why is that? We’re supposed to be in awe of a team that lost to Arizona at home?”
There are parts of me that can see New England driving up and down the field against the Seahawks. But there are other parts of me that can see New England being stuffed, stifled and stoned by the Seahawks’ defense.
Somebody tell me what I’m missing here. Since the Seahawks shut down Tony Romo and Aaron Rodgers at CenturyLink Field, shouldn’t they be able to shut down Brady, too? Understanding that Brady is a future Hall of Famer, but is he that much better than those guys? I’ll give you a yes on Romo, but Rodgers, too?
And the last time we saw the Seahawks at home, didn’t they have eight sacks against the Packers? I mean, these defensive guys are hell on wheels wherever they play, but aren’t they even better at home?
Won’t the 12th Man adversely impact the Patriots’ no-huddle offense? I would certainly think so, even if they’ve taken measures to cope with the noise.
Then when you take a look at the other side of the ball, Russell Wilson, just as he did last week at Carolina, should find some downfield opportunities against New England. The Patriots are 30th in the league against the pass, allowing 290 yards a game. That’s 40 yards worse that Carolina’s pass defense.
Here’s another factor I’ll mention that you won’t see anywhere else – New England’s Zoltan Mesko is among the worst punters in the league. Maybe Leon Washington can make something happen with one of Mesko’s wobblers.
When I put it all together, I can’t see why New England is favored by 3.5. I thought it would be more like a pick-’em game.
Unless I’m mistaken, a good defense usually has the upper hand against a good offense, especially when the good defense is supported by 68,000 ear-shattering fans.
I’m going to ignore the fact that the Patriots are 12-1 vs. the NFC in their last 13 road games and take the Hawks to put it in their invincible faces on Sunday.
My prediction: Seahawks 24, Patriots 16
For the Go 2 Guy’s picks on the Husky and Cougar games, visit his website www.jimmoorethego2guy.com. Jim also writes for the Kitsap Sun and Cougfan.com. You can reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org and follow him on Twitter @cougsgo.