I guess it is time (or past time) to break this game down. The big factor for this game may turn out to be the weather. It is supposed to be cold and wet. This would figure to benefit the Redskins who have a much more solid running game. Shaun Alexander is simply not himself anymore, and the Seahawks rely heavily on their passing game.
The problem here on defense is that I don’t know how well we match up. Our strength since injuries to Rogers and Taylor has been stopping the run. I’m a bit concerned about them being able to stretch us out and take advantage of our lack of depth. The good news is that their best receiver, Deion Branch is a game time decision with calf issues. If we can truly shut down Alexander (and I think we can), and force them into a bunch of 3rd and longs, I think we will be able to handle the spread attack. It is the 3rd and 5 and less type plays that are hard to defend when you have to defend the whole field. Our linebackers have been giving up the 6 and 7 yard middle routes a lot (by design) and if we are forced to shut those down, it will be tough to avoid giving up the big play on the outside.
On offense, I like how we matchup a little better. Seattle’s defense is average (15th in the league), but better against the pass due to a very good pass rush and agressive backfield. Their run defense is not special, and we should be able to control the clock. My biggest concern is Clinton Portis’ recent spate of fumbles. With the wet ball, CP needs to be extra careful. Another concern is Heyer against Patrick Kearney. Though Heyer did a great job against Strahan so let’s hope he can repeat the effort.
Assuming we control the clock and stop the run, we will be very much in this game. If Cooley and Collins can keep moving the chains when we need it, look for a big game for Portis to seal the deal in a close, hard fought game. I’m predicting 23-19. Hail Skins!