At just one place, the Seattle Seahawks have been a contender for the No. one seed, but they dropped to the fifth seed soon after losing to the San Francisco 49ers on a past-2nd, objective-line stand in Week seventeen.
For as very good as the Seahawks have been on the road this time (eight-one, together with last week’s first-spherical acquire at Philadelphia), and as fantastic as Wilson has been everywhere you go (4,552 total yards, 38 overall touchdowns), they have experienced historic struggles at Lambeau Subject. Wilson is -3 there with some of the worst figures of his profession. The Seahawks as a group have not won there given that 1999. And now they’re tasked with knocking off a Packers team that analytics say over-performed on their way to a 13-3 file.
The Seahawks and Packers have an unforgettable playoff historical past. Just inquire Matt Hasselbeck.
Really do not get it twisted: The Packers are perilous. They really don’t search like their teams of current memory — the protection is legit, and the managing video game has served acquire some pressure off 36-year outdated quarterback Aaron Rodgers — but they nonetheless pose a risk. The Packers escaped the Washington Redskins in early December, twenty-15, and Rodgers imagined the acquire symbolized the team’s time. It showed the Packers understood how to gain no issue the game’s fashion.
The essential to this transformation is that Rodgers no more time demands to put the franchise on his back, as he did through the team’s playoff operates in 2014 or 2016. The jogging match facilities on Aaron Jones, a person of the NFL’s breakout stars this year the 2017 fifth-round decide out of UTEP tied for the league lead in dashing touchdowns (sixteen).
The defense keys this grinding rate, way too, a byproduct of retooling the device very last offseason. The Packers introduced in outdoors linebackers Za’Darius Smith and Preston Smith, and they have permitted the crew to slice down on its blitz charge — the Packers rated in the top rated 10 of the league past time but are base five this year, enabling them to play far more defenders in protection. The Packers and their edge rushers will glimpse to get following Wilson, but Wilson has shown he can escape.