And off we go!
That moment we all have been waiting for since the last time the Seattle Seahawks faced the Arizona Cardinals is upon us.
The first game of the season. Gone are the days of only reading about our Seahawks on the practice field. Gone are the days of watching the second and third string play during the preseason.
From here on out, the games count, and what better way to get our division championship season rolling than by getting the first win on the road in sunny Arizona!
Matchup: Seattle vs. Arizona
Venue: University of Phoenix Stadium
Date: September 9th, 2012
Weather: 100 high, 90 low. Isolated Thunderstorms. (Roof Closed)
Team Records: Seahawks (0-0) Cardinals (0-0)
Team Standings: Seattle tied for first (NFC West) Arizona tied for first (NFC West)
Game notes/How the match up
These are two teams that are going in separate directions it appears. Both are trying to get back to their Super Bowl years, where they both, incidentally, lost to the Pittsburgh Steelers.
Seattle’s running game should be no match for the defensive front line of the Cardinals, but the secondary is another story.
The Seahawks have the better unit, but Adrian Wilson is a super stud in terms of NFL safeties.
Defensively, the Hawks should dominate the passing game of Arizona, as John Skelton appears to have only one target every time he drops back, Larry Fitzgerald.
Beanie Wells is listed as questionable, so the Cardinals weak running game will be that much weaker if he is not able to go.
Arizona holds the edge in the kicker position as Jay Feely rarely misses. If the Cardinals make it as far as the red zone, expect Feely to have his leg tested against the Seattle special teams.
What to watch: Seattle
This game is all about the new additions to the Seahawks.
Can Russell Wilson take it to the Cardinals like he did against his preseason opponents?
How much of an impact will Braylon Edwards make for this new air assault?
And finally, will Bruce Irvin show up for his debut? It seemed to take a little bit of time before he felt comfortable against NFL offensive linemen, but this is Arizona we’re talking about. They may have the worst O line in the NFL.
This may not be the best test of true talent for us fans, but if we end up losing this one, look for some immediate changes as we have Dallas and Green Bay following this week.
What to watch: Arizona
John Skelton will be under center starting off the year in Arizona, beating out the struggling Kevin Kolb for number one on the depth chart.
Of course Larry Fitzgerald is always a threat for any defense, but the question here will be can the offensive line give Skelton enough time to get him the ball?
And last years surprise WR, Early Doucet will be a handful for the secondary as well.
With Beanie Wells listed as questionable, the Cardinals will probably send out Ryan Williams as their starter.
The Cardinals have some pretty good backs on this years squad, but once again, the offensive line will be the deciding factor on whether or not any of them have a good year.
Seattle O vs. Arizona D
This should be a piece of cake for the Hawks.
If Lynch is able to go, he will tear the front four a new one.
Russell Wilson will have to shake off his NFL debut jitters in a hurry.
The Cardinals secondary is nothing to mess with. If he has to scramble, he should be able to pull off some long gains though.
The Cardinals linebacking core reads like a who’s who of NFL players, except not in a good way. More like who in the hell are these guys.
If Wilson stays confident, he should be able to shred the Cards defense to a pulp.
Arizona O vs. Seattle D
If John Skelton is able to stay upright in the pocket, he will have to test the best secondary in the division.
The rush defense of the Hawks is no slouch either, so either Beanie Wells or Ryan Williams is going to have a very hard time breaking past the front line.
Bobby Wagner gets his first shot at a NFL offense in the MLB position, his veteran like poise will be an intimidating figure in the middle of the field for the Hawks.
Larry Fitzgerald and Early Doucet will have their hands full trying to get open in the secondary.
Arizona. Questionable: G Adam Snyder, CB Greg Toler, RB Beanie Wells. Probable: TE Rob Housler, S Rashad Johnson, WR Andre Roberts, OLB O’Brien Schofield, RB LaRod Stepehns-Howling.
Seattle holds the line at 2.5 points, but this is giving Arizona too much credit in my book. Here’s our Seahawks gambling insider post.