Seahawks versus Eagles: Three key matchups
By Lee Vowell
The Seahawks and Eagles are both battling for a playoff spot. Who wins in week 12 might come down to these three matchups.
Football is a simple game: run fast, block your man, catch the ball or stop the guy from catching it. Simple. But with the Seahawks and for 12s nothing ever seems to come easy even though Seattle is mostly successful. Seattle has won four games this year by a field goal or less and that doesn’t include the overtime win against the Buccaneers in week 9.
This is a long way of saying that when Seattle plays the Eagles in week 12 on Sunday, the game will most likely be close with the usual Seahawk ebbs and flows. The game will probably come down to these three matchups.
Russell Wilson versus the Eagles secondary
For a lot of the year, Philadelphia wasn’t great against the pass. But they have gotten healthier as the season has gone on and the last two weeks have been very good. That said, the Eagles have been good against anemic offenses in the bears and the Patriots.
But the wind will be blowing and Philly is at home and they will be trying to focus on stopping Russell Wilson. The Eagles are fourth in the NFL at stopping the run and Seattle would be wise not to force the issue. They need to rely on Wilson to win (again). Philadelphia has allowed 17 touchdown passes and picked off 8 passes. Wilson has thrown just two picks. If Wilson can be his usual self, Seattle will win.
Zach Ertz versus ?
The Seahawks decided to release veteran nickelback Jamar Taylor this past week. To be fair, Taylor has not played especially well in 2019. Losing Taylor might be good in the long-term, but this week? It will be interesting to see who the Seahawks choose to replace him. Will it be rookie Ugo Amadi?
Whoever is Taylor’s replacement will have a tough task. Chiefly, covering Eagles tight end Zach Ertz. Seattle is 27th in the NFL in covering tight ends giving up 51 catches for 615 yards and four touchdowns. And Ertz will be one of the better tight ends Seattle has faced. Limiting Ertz when the Eagles are already struggling with injuries to their wideouts would be huge.
Fletcher Cox versus D.J. Fluker, Joey Hunt and Mike Iupati
Fletcher Cox is a full grown man. The Eagles defensive tackle was First-Team All-Pro in 2018. Cox isn’t having the same kind of season this year but he can still supply interior pass rush. Seattle’s tackles Duane brown and Germain Ifedi are playing pretty well, but a lot of the times Wilson feels heat is up the middle. Should the Seahawks keep Cox at bay, Wilson should have enough time to make a few big plays and lead Seattle to a victory.