Friday, October 5, 2012

My Panthers vs Seahawks prediction and some pregame notes

I'm really interested to watch two things Sunday for the Carolina-Seattle game at 4:05 p.m.: how well the Seahawks rush Cam Newton and how well the Panthers contain running back Marshawn Lynch.

The Seahawks decimated Green Bay's Aaron Rodgers in the first half of their game -- sacking him an astonishing eight times. Newton and his offensive line have quite a task in front of them.

Lynch is having a Pro Bowl type of year so far for the Seahawks -- the least number of rushing yards he had had in any game this year is 85. Lynch has only two fewer rushing yards by himself as DeAngelo Williams, Newton and Jonathan Stewart do put together (423 for Lynch, 425 for the Panthers' trio). I think Lynch and Newton will have more to do with who wins this game than any other player, including Seattle rookie quarterback Russell Wilson.

Because Seattle's run defense is so good -- the Seahawks are No.2 in the NFL in yards per carry (2.99) -- Newton's arm will be as important as it ever has been.

** Justin Medlock has an important job Sunday -- kick the ball all the way out of the end zone so Seattle's Leon Washington can't get to it. Washington is one of the most dangerous kickoff return men in the game, averaging an astonishing 37.7 yards per kickoff return so far this season. He's good on punt returns, too. The Panthers' coverage teams have been improved this season, but Washington will really test them.

** Carolina and Seattle don't play each other very much, and when they do the games haven't been terribly significant except for one. That was the 2005 NFC Championship, played in Seattle and won easily by the Seahawks, 34-14.

That game doesn't seem terribly long ago -- I still remember being shocked at how loud the crowd in Seattle was and how bad Jake Delhomme and the Panthers' offense was (until midway in the fourth quarter, Carolina's only score was on a Steve Smith punt return). Only four Panther players on that 2005 team remain on this one: Smith, Thomas Davis, Chris Gamble and Jordan Gross.

** Carolina-Seattle fact that may be interesting only to me: When the two teams last played in 2010 (and Seattle won), Seattle's kicker was Olindo Mare.

** Prediction time: I missed the Panthers' result the first two weeks and have hit it the last two. Sunday's pick: Carolina 24, Seattle 20.

12 comments:

Anonymous said...

I am wondering how long it will take Panther fans to notice the job that Jeff Fisher is doing in St. Louis. Wonder if they'd do a Riveria for Fisher trade mid-season?

Anonymous said...

If the Panthers can't run they won't win. Cam can't carry this team with his arm only.

Anonymous said...

Right, because St. Louis would so easily give up one of the 5 best coaches in football.

Smitty's backhand said...

Missing Hangartner will spell doom for the O-line. This team may put 10 sacks on the Panthers. Cam, wer extra pads and just pray you stay healthy.

Hawks- 32
Panthers- 21

Anonymous said...

We lost the 2005 game for two reasons - we were on our fourth RB (Davis, Foster, and Goings were all hurt) and all Seattle had to do was double or triple-cover Steve Smith. We were also on our third road playoff game, even though we won the first two convincingly.

Buckshot Jenkins said...

I have a bad feeling about this one and I hope that I'm wrong. If they're #2 in rush defense and our rushing game has struggled at times then Cam may have to do it all himself which is a recipe for interceptions.

Anonymous said...

Not getting hopes up anymore for Carolina to do anything. Get let down too often when you think they are finally there.

Anonymous said...

newton will not get much protection from offense,to bad because we could win this one.

Anonymous said...

a bad road team from the west coast is traveling for a 1:00pm kickoff on the East Coast...Panthers win by 10!

Anonymous said...

We could have traded down out of the 9 spot, picked up an extra pick and got that beast pass-rusher Bruce Irvin that's actually doing something as a rookie. Oh well, we had no need for an impact D-lineman in this past draft.

Anonymous said...

@Anon 3:48 - You must be one of those 'Real' panther fans.. Game starts at 4:00pm ET, not 1:00pm ET....Gezzzz

jamesgroves said...

It's time to move Kuechly to the middle and forget about it.

He was drafted to be that guy, let's watch him do it.