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September 20, 2014 at 5:22 PM

Seahawks-Broncos: Prediction time

In case you missed it earlier, here are our predictions for Sunday’s game. As you can see, they are being compiled for the season so you can see how we are doing each week.

We’re all 1-1, as are the Seahawks.

But that will change this week with intrepid Times columnist Larry Stone picking Denver while the rest of us go with Seattle — including guest picker Michael Saunders of the Mariners.

As I wrote there, I think  the Seahawks will bounce back from last week’s loss and beat the Broncos, though in a much tighter game than the Super Bowl.

Seattle’s defense obviously had a really off day last week in San Diego, and lots of things contributed — the weather, for one, which while sounding like an excuse can’t be discounted. I’d expect the Seattle defense to play a lot better this week, and the offense to look more like its usual run-oriented self.

That said., Denver will be a handful. The Broncos are better defensively than they were in February, and their offensive line also should be better.

That latter point could loom critical. Denver’s starting tackles for this game are different than for the Super Bowl with Ryan Clady (injured then) now back, moving Chris Clark back to his usual spot at right tackle. Seattle’s pass rush dominated the Super Bowl.

Seattle needs really big games from Michael Bennett and Cliff Avril, and it also needs solid play when the backup linemen come in. Bruce Irvin’s health could loom critical in that regard. He seemed to be rounding into form before suffering a rib injury this week. If he can’t play, then the Seahawks will need even more good snaps from O’Brien Schofield and Cassius Marsh and maybe Greg Scruggs, who might be active if Irvin can’t play.

But having just pointed out some things to worry about,  I think Seattle will  rise to the occasion and get the job done.

In fact, that’s one thing the Seahawks have really done well since the run with this current group of players really began midway through the 2012 season — play well in big games. I expect them to do so again Sunday and get back on track.

 

 

 

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