The Seattle Seahawks are suddenly a popular darkhorse candidate to reach the Super Bowl based on their excellent play over the last month, but keep in mind that this is a team that went 3-5 away from the incredibly loud Seattle home crowd this season, and the most impressive win away from home was not even a true road game, as the 50-17 win over the Bills was in Toronto.
The Redskins meanwhile come in with great momentum, having won seven straight games and winning the NFC East in the final game of Week 17. And yet, the Seahawks are -3 favorites on the road with the total set at 46.
SEAHAWKS – REDSKINS PLAYOFFS BETTING LINE:
OPEN: SEAHAWKS PK | CURRENT: SEAHAWKS -3 | O/U: 46
1. Why Washington will cover the spread: The Redskins will cover this spread and win this game outright if they can keep Marshawn Lynch to less than 100 yards. Seattle quarterback Russell Wilson has been a great story, but Washington would take its chances with the rookie being asked to win on the road in his first career playoff game. A second key for Washington is running back Alfred Morris being able to run on the Seattle defense, and you may be surprised to learn that the Seahawks allowed 4.5 yards per rushing attempt this season. If Morris is successful, then it makes Robert Griffin III even more dangerous as the Seahawks will not know who to defend.
2. Why Seattle will cover the spread: The Seahawks will cover this spread if Wilson can thwart the Redskins’ strategy by having early success throwing against the 30th ranked Washington pass defense that’s allowed 281.9 yards per game. The Seahawks have not really asked much of Wilson in recent weeks while they have been running through everyone, but he may be asked to do a bit more here because the Redskins surprisingly ranked fifth in the NFL in rushing defense allowing only 95.7 yards per game. A second key for Seattle is its defense not allowing Morris to get on track, as Griffin has been hobbled by his knee injury in recent weeks and has not thrown the ball as effectively as before the injury.
3. Total Talk: We would love the Redskins in this spot if Griffin was 100 percent healthy, but as it is, we still like this game to go ‘over’. If you listened only to media reports, you would be under the impression that the Seattle defense is impenetrable. However, as mentioned, the Seahawks can be run on and they simply do not play with the same defensive intensity on the road. On the other side, look for Wilson to throw the ball more than he has been and to be reasonably successful doing so, which might also open up some running lanes for Lynch. In the end, we are calling for an upset with Redskins kicker Kai Forbath, who was 17-for-18 in field goal attempts this year, playing a key role.
4. Betting Trends for Skins/Seahawks: The Seahawks are 9-22 ATS in their last 31 games after allowing less than 15 points in their previous game. The ‘over’ is 12-5 in the Seahawks’ last 17 road games vs. teams with winning home records.
Washington 26 – Seattle 24
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