Sunday, Noon on FOX. The Seahawks come in at 2-2; 2 wins at home, 2 losses on the road. They have a stout run defense and good special teams. Offensively they are a work in progress... who am I describing? Both teams of course. The difference is the Bears are bit more talented on offense and defense, especially at QB & DE.
Teams Rankings (per game to account for bye weeks)
|Offense Rank||Defense Rank|
The Bears definitely have the edge with their defense. Hopefully Idonije, Peppers, Tommie, Toeaina, & Adams can have another great game.
212: Number of career NFL starts for the Bears offensive line which will start vs. Seattle
172: Number of career NFL starts for Olin Kreutz (that leaves 40 for the other 4 guys for you math majors).
5: Number of concussions "reported" that Jay Cutler has had in his career.
1: Number of concussions Jay has stated that he has sustained.
OUT: Major Wright-hamstring; Roberto Garza-knee
QUESTIONABLE or DOUBTFUL: Lance Briggs-ankle; Charles Tillman-calf
QUESTIONABLE or DOUBTFUL: Marcus Trufant (CB) - ankle
When Seattle Has the Ball:
They traded for enigmatic RB Marshawn Lynch. He makes his Seahawk debut vs. the Bears. With a 1-2 punch of him and Justin Forsett, Seattle has some talent in its backfield. The Bears have one of the most stout run defenses, and held the talented duo of DeAngelo Williams and Jonathan Stewart mostly in check last week.
The Seahawks are not a very good passing team. Matt Hasselbeck is past his prime by a few years. They also possess very little talent at wide receiver. In order to pass the ball against the Bears, Seattle needs to establish the run first. That is no small feat. If their run game stalls, as it should, look for the Bears defensive ends to pin their ears back and get after Hasselbeck. Despite his lack of mobility, he's only been sacked 9 times in 4 games. He's also thrown 6 picks to only 4 TDs and fumbled once. The Bears defense should dominate these guys.
Key Matchup: Julius Peppers vs. left tackle Russell Okung (rookie, 6th pick overall). Okung will get his first NFL start and in fact, will play in only his 2nd NFL regular season game ever. He gets Peppers. Wow.
X-Factor: Seattle has outstanding special teams. Sean Jensen discusses that here. Leon Washington has two kickoff return touchdowns.
When Chicago Has the Ball:
All eyes are on Jay Cutler. Are there any effects still lingering from the concussion? How many run attempts will Martz call? The Bears have a new look offensive line too, with Chris Williams being inserted at Left Guard for the injured Roberto Garza. How will he perform? Seattle has 11 sacks in 4 games (almost 3 per game). Can the Bears offensive line keep Jay's jersey clean?
Look for the Bears to run more than pass, but only slightly. The Seahawks have a poor pass defense, so it's the best way to attack them.
Key Matchup: Left defensive end Chris Clemons (4 sacks) vs. right tackle J'Marcus Webb. Webb gets his 2nd career start and goes up against a guy averaging a sack a game this season.
X-Factor: Jay Cutler's brain. Hope it's all healed and doesn't get knocked around.
And 1 More Thing:
Interesting note from Zach Zaidman tweet:
Leon Washington is top kickoff returner in the NFC. Danieal Manning is 2nd. Golden Tate is top punt returner in NFC. Devin Hester is 2nd.