During July, the Last Word On Sports NFL department will be analyzing the schedules of every team in the NFL and ranking each game in order of difficulty (with one being the most difficult). This series will be split into the eight most difficult games (ranked 1-8) and the eight easiest games (ranked 9-16) for each team. In this article, the Seattle Seahawks easiest games are the focus.
Seattle Seahawks Easiest Games in 2017
9. Week Seven at New York Giants
This game would seem difficult, but the Seahawks caught a break facing the Giants after a bye week. The Seahawks have usually dominated following bye weeks during the Pete Carroll era. Watching Odell Beckham and Richard Sherman battle should be exciting, but it’ll likely be more exciting than the game itself. The Seahawks defense thrives on turnover prone quarterbacks, and there aren’t many quarterbacks that throw more interceptions than Eli Manning. If the Seahawks are able to get pressure on Manning and force him into some questionable throws, this game could become a blowout (or a shutout like their previous matchup in New Jersey).
10. Week Nine vs. Washington Redskins
Will the real Kirk Cousins please stand up? Is Kirk Cousins any good? I’m not sure if Redskins fans even know the answer to that question. The Redskins surely don’t, which is why they haven’t signed him to a long-term deal. There’s been rumors about him being offered a huge deal, but it’s not worth believing until a deal is signed (and it doesn’t help that the team president thinks his name is Kurt). Cousins has moments where he looks like a top tier quarterback, then he follows that game up with a stinker that confuses and infuriates Redskins fans. Cousins is clearly the key to Washington’s season. If he’s able to build upon his 2016 success and elevate his teammates, then he’ll have a solid chance of leading his team to victory in Seattle. If not, this game could get ugly very quickly.
11. Week 14 vs. Jacksonville Jaguars
The Jacksonville Jaguars are one of the most intriguing and confusing teams in the NFL. Many fans and experts speculated that the Jaguars could break their playoff drought last season. But unfortunately for Jaguars fans, quarterback Blake Bortles regressed significantly. His mechanics have always been a work in progress, but last year were more of a work in regress. The Seahawks feast on turnover prone quarterbacks like Blake Bortles. Unless Bortles fixes his poor mechanics and decision making, the Seahawks should be heavy favorites heading into this matchup.
12. Week 13 vs. Philadelphia Eagles
Carson Wentz had an up-and-down rookie season. He started off hot, but hit a rookie wall midway through the season. One of his poor performance happened in Week 11 against the Seahawks. It’s not easy for any rookie quarterback to play in Seattle, but that experience should help him this time around. Wilson and company were able to shred Philadelphia’s defense last season. Wentz should have a better performance, but it won’t matter if his defense doesn’t rise to the occasion.
13. Week 17 vs. Arizona Cardinals
The Arizona Cardinals pulled off the road upset against the Seahawks in 2016. If Seattle already has the division and their playoff position locked up heading into the regular season’s final game, they might rest their starters and save them for the postseason. Otherwise, they’ll likely have something to play for. The Cardinals are coming off of a disappointing 2016, but they still have enough talent to make a postseason run. Seattle has struggled with the Cardinals at home during the Pete Carroll era. However, Carson Palmer has shown a tendency to regress during each season due to his age and deteriorating health. There’s a good chance that he’ll be banged up and ineffective towards the end of the season, which would give the Seahawks a great chance of winning their last game heading into the playoffs.
14. Week Eight vs. Houston Texans
The Houston Texans had the best defense in the NFL in 2016, and they played the majority of the season without arguably the best defensive player in the NFL. With a healthy J.J. Watt returning, the Texans defense should be lethal again. But it’s their offense that could keep them from returning to the postseason in 2017. Rookie Deshaun Watson is a great talent, but he could use a year on the bench to learn the system. Whether he or incumbent starter Tom Savage starts against the Seahawks, they’ll both have to face the daunting task of the Legion of Boom. The Texans overachieved last season and should regress towards in 2017. Their defense might be able to keep the game close, but they’ll need their offense to outperform their normal production to pull of this upset on the road.
15. Week 12 at San Francisco 49ers
The San Francisco 49ers are terrible. Seahawks fans might enjoy their rival struggling, but it’s unfortunate because the Seahawks-49ers rivalry during the Jim Harbaugh era led to numerous exciting games. But that 49ers team is gone and a dumpster fire has taken its place. The only hope for the 49ers is that the Seahawks accidently show up to the location of their old stadium and have to forfeit the game. In all seriousness, the Seahawks should win by multiple touchdowns.
16. Week Two vs. San Francisco 49ers
Did I mention that the San Francisco 49ers are terrible? They might be the worst team in the NFL. The Seahawks have owned the 49ers during the Pete Carroll era. This game is early in the season, and the Seahawks typically struggle during the first few games of each season with Pete Carroll at the helm. That’s the only hope that the 49ers have. They’ll have to depend on the Seahawks forgetting how to play football. Otherwise, this game shouldn’t be close.