The Seattle Seahawks could theoretically clinch a playoff spot in Week 17. They would need a little help, though. Seattle would have to beat a decent Pittsburgh Steelers team and then hope that the Minnesota Vikings and Green Bay Packers game ends in a tie. That is unlikely but possible.
A couple of Seahawks could get to milestone numbers on Sunday as well. DK Metcalf needs just 2 receiving yards to get to 1,000 for the season. That would be the third time in five years he has reached the 1,000-yard mark.
Edge rusher Boye Mafe needs just one sack to reach 10 for the season. He would become the first Seahawk to reach double-digits in sacks since Frank Clark and Jarran Reed both did so in 2018. Oddly, while Seattle is tied for the lead in the NFC for the most sacks (45), only two Seattle players (Mafe and Reed) have more than 4.5. But here are some bold guesses for what will happen in Week 17.
Prediction No. 1 - Seahawks running back Kenneth Walker runs for 120 yards
The Steelers are 8-7, like the Seahawks, but they have mostly gotten to that record because of the play of their defense. Pittsburgh is seventh in the NFL in fewest points allowed per game (19.6 - Seattle is 23 at 23.5) and has a very good pass defense. Pittsburgh also likes to try to disrupt and blitz quite a bit and are very good at hiding where the blitz is coming from. The Steelers blitz the fourth-most in the NFL (35.7 percent of dropbacks) and are 12th in sacks (42).
But where Pittsburgh's defense is somewhat suspect is in run defense. The Steelers have allowed the 13th-most rushing yards per game (117.5) and 12th-most rushing yards per attempt (4.2). Plus, one way for Seattle to keep Pittsburgh pass rush honest is to run the ball a bit more than they have been doing. This should mean Kenneth Walker getting the ball a lot.
Walker only has one game in 2023 where he has rushed for more than 100 yards. That was in Week 7 when he carried the ball 26 times against the Arizona Cardinals for 105 yards. Walker has a couple more games where he has had over 100 total yards, including Week 15 against the Philadelphia Eagles, and Walker does still need to be used in the passing game, but this needs to be a week he gets to 100 yards rushing and at least a touchdown. I think he gets 118 yards carrying the ball and 2 touchdowns.