Seattle Seahawks will face diminished Panthers and Giants teams in next two weeks

The Seahawks have dealt with a few injuries already, but key players will be missing from Seattle's next two opponents.
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The Seattle Seahawks have missed several important players in the first couple of weeks of 2023. Would the defense have looked even better in Week 2, for instance, had the team had Boye Mafe on the field? But Mafe missed the game with a knee injury.

Seattle also didn't have Devon Witherspoon in Week 1 and he might have made a big difference as he was overall very good in Week 2. Jamal Adams hasn't yet played this year, but his ability to be aggressive from his safety spot and get pressure on opposing quarterbacks can change the outcomes of games. Seattle also played much of the second half without Pro Bowl corner Riq Woolen in Week 2, though his injury doesn't appear serious.

And I am not yet including the fact that Seattle had to play without both its starting offensive tackles in Week 2 and somehow quarterback Geno Smith still stayed fairly clean. Every NFL team has to deal with injuries, of course, but the Seahawks have already had more than they normally do early in a season. But Seattle's next two opponents are going to be missing two extremely important players.

Seahawks facing teams the next two weeks with major injury issues

In Week 3, the Carolina Panthers won't have cornerback Jaycee Horn. Horn was placed on injured/reserve after Week 1 as he is dealing with a hamstring injury. Horn will be out until at least Week 6 meaning he will miss the game against Seattle. The young corner has missed a ton of time already in his first three years, but he proved in 2022 when he played 13 games that when he is on the field he can be very good.

In 2022, Horn had a quarterback rating allowed of just 62.4 when targeted and allowed only 33 of 60 passes thrown his way to be completed. He also had 3 interceptions. Without Horn, the Carolina Panthers should have a much tougher time stopping the Seahawks wide receiver trio of DK Metcalf, Tyler Lockett and Jaxon Smith-Njigba.

In Week 4, the Seahawks will likely face a New York Giants team without running back Saquon Barkley. Barkley injured his ankle late in the Giants Week 2 come-from-behind victory over the Arizona Cardinals. The team believes that Barkley didn't suffer a terribly bad high ankle sprain, but his ankle was swollen after the game so getting Barkley back in two weeks seems like a stretch.

When the Giants and Seahawks played in 2022, Barkley ran 20 times for just 53 yards and scored a touchdown in Seattle's 27-13 victory. I never want to see a player get hurt, though, so hopefully Barkley can bounce back quickly. Still, expecting him to play against the Seahawks in Week 4 seems wrong.

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