Seahawks and Bengals. Let’s take a look at the keys of the game.
Geno Atkins vs. Justin Britt
This is the big one. In Sunday’s matchup, Justin Britt will have the pleasure of protecting Russell Wilson from Geno Atkins, the all-pro defensive tackle who has already registered three sacks and a whole bunch of pressures and QB hits for the Bengals this season. In Seattle’s first four matchups, the offensive line has given up a total of 18 sacks – and that number could easily be higher if it weren’t for Russell Wilson’s Houdini-like-abilities.
If Britt can provide Wilson with even just a little bit of time, the Seattle offense might be able to get something going. However, the amount of points Seattle puts up will be a direct result of the offensive line’s performance. Britt will need to have a decent game if Seattle is going to win. Watch closely to see how Justin Britt performs in pass protection.
LOB vs. AJ Green and company
Since Kam Chancellor’s return, the Seattle defense has not allowed a single offensive touchdown. However, Seattle (since Chancellor’s return) has yet to face an opponent with the caliber of offensive weapons like the Bengals possess. A.J. Green is a stud and easily one of the NFL’s top receiving threats. Dalton and Green seem to have a deep threat chemistry that shreds opposing defenses. After an injury-ridden season in 2014, Green has re-assumed his natural form and already logged 417 receiving yards and 3 touchdowns.
The Seattle defense prioritizes taking away the deep threat – and the Bengals offense prioritizes on taking advantage of it. If Seattle can limit the amount of explosive plays by the Cincinnati offense, they’ll be in good shape to win this game.
Drew Nowak was a straight up liability on Monday. Multiple bad snaps and lapses in pass protection held the Seattle offense back from getting anything going. Nowak HAS to play better – or it might be time to explore other options at center.
Watch to see how Nowak performs in pass protection, run blocking, and if he delivers catchable snaps to Russ.