Week 1: Seattle Seahawks At Arizona Cardinals

Seattle Seahawks v Kansas City Chiefs
Oakland Raiders v Arizona Cardinals
Winner Russell Wilson did not have the pedigree of Andrew Luck or Robert Griffin III, but he will be the Seahawks’ starting quarterback. The third-round pick beat out Matt Flynn because of his poise, athleticism and accuracy.
Ken Whisenhunt still had not made an official selection at quarterback. John Skelton and Kevin Kolb seem to have little to offer at this point and it seems likely that Skelton has the better chance to improve at this point.
The Seahawks should be able to take some of the pressure off of their rookie quarterback with the running game. Marshawn Lynch is coming off a 1,204-yard season and is ready to meet or exceed those numbers. Sidney Rice is the best receiver of an ordinary group.
Winner If the Cardinals can get any kind of positive traction from quarterback, they have one of the best receivers in the game in Larry Fitzgerald. Todd Heap can go up and get it in third-down situations. Beanie Wells gives them solid production from running back.
Pete Carroll understands defense and the Seahawks showed steady improvement in that area last year. Red Bryant seals the edge on the run while Chris Clemons had another double-digit sack season.
Winner The Cardinals have to look at their team and realize that the defense must carry the team. Defensive coordinator Ray Horton depends heavily on Calais Campbell to put pressure on the quarterback and he gets help from Darnell Dockett.
Special Teams
Winner The Seahawks were not overly effective on special teams in 2011, but they have two excellent special teamers in Leon Washington and Michael Robinson. Placekicker Steven Hauschka and punter Jon Ryan are a solid duo as well.
Patrick Peterson is 2012-speak for Devin Hester. Peterson is coming off a season in which he returned four punts for touchdowns. Like Hester, it seems Peterson can take it to the house any time he wants.

We'll Just Call it a Tie

Seattle Seahawks v Kansas City Chiefs Oakland Raiders v Arizona Cardinals

The checkmarks may be even, but you have to favor the Seahawks because the Cardinals are so moribund at the quarterback position. That sounds strange considering the Seahawks are going with a rookie third-rounder, but Wilson earned the spot because he can put the ball on the money. That’s what the position is all about.


  1. MINNEAPOLIS, MN - OCTOBER 9: Quarterback Brock Osweiler #17 of the Houston Texans drops back to pass during the first quarter of the game on October 9, 2016 at US Bank Stadium in Minneapolis, Minnesota. (Photo by Hannah Foslien/Getty Images) SAN DIEGO, CA - OCTOBER 13:  Trevor Siemian #13 of the Denver Broncos warms up before the game against the San Diego Chargers at Qualcomm Stadium on October 13, 2016 in San Diego, California.  (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)
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  2. SEATTLE, WA - OCTOBER 16:  Quarterback Russell Wilson #3 of the Seattle Seahawks passes against the Atlanta Falcons at CenturyLink Field on October 16, 2016 in Seattle, Washington.  (Photo by Jonathan Ferrey/Getty Images) GLENDALE, AZ - OCTOBER 17:  Quarterback Carson Palmer #3 of the Arizona Cardinals looks to make a pass against the New York Jets in the first half of the NFL game at University of Phoenix Stadium on October 17, 2016 in Glendale, Arizona.  (Photo by Norm Hall/Getty Images)
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  3. FOXBORO, MA - OCTOBER 16:  Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots prepares to receive a snap during the game against the Cincinnati Bengals at Gillette Stadium on October 16, 2016 in Foxboro, Massachusetts.  (Photo by Jim Rogash/Getty Images) PHILADELPHIA, PA - SEPTEMBER 25:  Quarterback  Landry Jones #3 of the Pittsburgh Steelers throws a pass during warm ups before playing against the Philadelphia Eagles at Lincoln Financial Field on September 25, 2016 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.  (Photo by Rich Schultz/Getty Images)
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