By Matthew Asher
Currently just one of seven unbeaten teams in the NFL, the Seahawks are on the verge of their best start to a season ever. The last time they started a season 3-0 was in 2006, the year after Seattle went to the Super Bowl. The Hawks have never started off a season 4-0.
Last season, Seattle started off the season 2-1. While a 3-0 start may not seem like that much of a difference, what is amazing is how poorly all the other top NFC teams from last year are doing in the first three weeks.
The six teams to qualify for the 2013 NFC playoffs, from top to lowest seed, were the Atlanta Falcons, San Francisco 49ers, Green Bay Packers, Washington Redskins, Seattle Seahawks and Minnesota Vikings. With three weeks completed in the current season, how many have winning records? Believe it or not, only Seattle is currently above .500 out of all of those teams.
It gets even weirder. Seattle has as many wins as the other five NFC Playoff teams from last year combined. Last year’s top three NFC teams are all 1-2 and both Washington and Minnesota have yet to win a single game this season.
Other than “the intangibles,” what are the main reasons for Seattle’s success? It’s obvious, but never an easy thing to do: scoring more points than the opponents. Nobody in the entire NFL has done that better than Seattle so far this season.
While Seattle is not leading the league in points scored (Denver has put up 127 points; Seattle’s 86 points are the fourth most), they are doing the next best thing: limiting their opponents’ scoring. So far, the Seahawks have given up just 27 points, the best in the league.
Not only have they allowed the least points in the NFL, but they also have the best point differential in the entire league, scoring 59 more points than their opponents. Out of the other five NFC Playoff teams, the Packers are the only other team with a positive point differential at eight.
What about the other four teams? Atlanta is currently at negative three, Minnesota is negative 15—and then it really starts to get ugly. Washington has allowed 31 more points than they have scored and San Francisco has been outscored by 40 points so far.
If Seattle wants to show the entire NFL that they are the team to beat in the NFC this season, they need to keep doing what they’ve been doing against Houston this week. Kickoff is scheduled for 10 am PDT.
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Matthew Asher is a freelance journalist. From an early age, sports have played a major role in his life. He graduated from Emory University with a B.A. in Journalism. After college he spent 2 years working with CNN Sports and still occasionally writes sports articles for several publications both in the United States and Canada. His work can be found on Examiner.com.