And to be clear, that headline isn’t meant to imply that Marshawn Lynch has been anything short of runner Seattle fans have come to know and love the last few years.
It’s simply to point out that Lynch hasn’t had quite as many really big games as a year ago, when he had 10 100-yard rushing games (and another in the playoffs) seven times rushing for 111 or more.
He has just one 100-yard game this season, that at 102 in the loss at Indianapolis.
I wrote a little about all of that in my preview story for today’s game.
As that story notes, though, Seattle statistically is running the ball just fine, getting 154.4 per game, which entering the weekend ranked second in the NFL.
And as the story also notes, tonight they play a St. Louis team that is 30th defending the run, at 126.4 per game. Put all of that together, and it has the makings of maybe being a breakout game for Lynch and the running game today.
If Seattle hits its rushing average tonight, it would take over the top spot in that category in the NFL.
The top two teams in rushing after Sunday’s games are San Francisco at 1,224 for the season, and the Eagles at 1,203. Seattle has 1,081 (and all will have played the same amount of games, eight, after this weekend).
Of course, the numbers that really will matter to Seattle tonight are 7-1, which the Seahawks can be for the first time in franchise history (they’d never been 6-1 before last week so every win from here on out without a loss will set a new mark) with a victory tonight.
Here are a few more links as we get set for kickoff tonight:
— Seahawks.com with four matchups to watch;
— Seahawks.com also says Pete Carroll is kicking aside any potential distractions;
— ESPN.com offers three things to watch;
— ESPN with a more detailed breakdown of the game;
— The St. Louis Post-Dispatch says the odds are stacked against the Rams tonight;
— The St. Louis Post-Dispatch also lists seven things to watch tonight;
— The Post-Dispatch also details what a busy sports night it will be in St. Louis with Game 5 of the World Series occurring at the same time as the football game;
— Dan Caesar of the Post-Dispatch picks Seattle 17-13;
— Here’s the NFL Today video preview of the game;
— The New York Times picks the Seahawks;
— Pete Schrager of Foxsports.com picks the Seahawks to win 24-13 but also says to watch out for the 49ers in the long run;
— San Jose Mercury News columnist Tim Kawakami says the 49ers are taking aim at the Seahawks after their big win over the Jaguars, their fifth in a row after a 1-2 start;
— Crazy to think that if the season ended today, the Broncos and 49ers would each be No. 5 seeds;
— Finally, ESPN’s John Clayton notes that outside of a few teams, such as the Seahawks, a lot of clubs are putting their running games on the back burner.