3 Things for Lions to win
1. Max protect. The Lions aren’t pushing the football down the field as evidenced by Matthew Stafford’s 6.4 yard average through the air, the lowest average for Stafford since his injury shortened 2010 season. Calvin Johnson is healthy and Golden Tate has demonstrated the ability to stretch defenses but the Lions haven’t been able to take advantage of either deep threat because the protection from the offensive line hasn’t held up. Keep a tight end and a back in to block on occasion to afford yourself the opportunity to utilize Stafford’s arm strength. Even if you don’t get a completion, there’s always the chance that Tate or Johnson could draw an interference call.
2. Make this game Ameer Abdullah’s coming out show. No Joique Bell in this one may force the Lions to finally realize that they have a gem in Abdullah. One way to take the pressure of your quarterback is to commit to the running game . Therefore, feed Abdullah early and often.
3. Take the fight to the Seahawks. No Marshawn Lynch, so tackle the running back on the way to the quarterback. Force Russell Wilson to beat you from the pocket and maintain disciplined rush lanes.
3 Things for Seahawks to win
1. The Lions have given up a touchdown to the tight end position every week thus far. Jimmy Graham is by far the most talented tight end they will have played through 4 weeks. Execute the offense and get him involved early.
2. Take advantage of a bad offensive line. The difference between today’s Seahawk team and the 2013 Super Bowl Champs is the inability to send wave after wave of pass rusher at the opponent. You had to invest big in your stars so you can’t keep everyone, but those defensive linemen that remain have to raise their level of play if the Seahawks want to continue to sit in their 4-3 base, Cover 3.
3. Don’t waiver from your identity. This is a run first offense. Certainly the passing game should feature Jimmy Graham but even without the services of Beast Mode, tout the pill. Keep Fred Jackson and Thomas Rawls busy and allow your fairly new offensive line to fire-off and attack the defense.
What to watch for…
Turnover margin. The Lions are a desperate team and the Seahawks aren’t whole without the pulse of their offense, Marshawn Lynch. Execution and ball security always loom big but when you are desperate for a win or missing a key ball-carrier the turnover margin carries additional weight.
The Front Office Says…
The Seattle Seahawks to win.