Kickoff Monday, Sep 12th 8:15pm Eastern

Broncos (
25) at

Hawks (
19)

Over/Under 44.0

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Notes

Key Matchups
Broncos Run D
18th DVOA/26th Yards allowed per carry
Seahawks Run O
20th DVOA/5th Yards per carry
Broncos Pass D
4th DVOA/1st Yards allowed per pass
Seahawks Pass O
4th DVOA/20th Yards per pass
Seahawks Run D
17th DVOA/22nd Yards allowed per carry
Broncos Run O
28th DVOA/28th Yards per carry
Seahawks Pass D
17th DVOA/19th Yards allowed per pass
Broncos Pass O
25th DVOA/8th Yards per pass

XANDAMERE’S SHOWDOWN SLANT

Week 1 closes out with the Broncos visiting the Seahawks in a 44 total game with Denver favored by a whopping seven points (quite a haul for a road team). For those doing the math at home, that means our home team Seahawks have a team total of just 18.5, which is a rare low number, especially for such a brand name team. Of course, Seattle has moved on from Russell Wilson, who is now in Denver. Good job on the scheduling here, NFL, to get us a few grudge matches to start the season!

Seattle

We’ll start with Seattle and their run game. Rookie back Kenneth Walker is surprisingly listed as questionable but nothing I can find makes it look like he has any realistic chance to play so this seems to just be Pete Carroll being a jerk with his injury news power plays once again. Rashaad Penny should be the guy here and we can expect a large workload. After Penny took over last season, he saw 16+ carries in four of five games to close out the year. What he isn’t likely to see is much passing game work so he’s basically a 2-down back albeit with a voluminous role and a coach who is unlikely to tilt to the passing game almost no matter the game situation. Penny’s ceiling is high relative to his salary but his floor is somewhat shaky with no meaningful passing game role unless he gets into the end zone. Behind Penny, some combination of Travis Homer and DeeJay Dallas will pick up passing down work and backup snaps, with Homer more likely to be the primary receiving back. Both are in play as punt options at cheap prices.

Final Countdown

(duh-duh-duh-DUH, duh-duh-duh-duh-DUHHH, duh-duh-duh-duh…)

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The Seattle passing attack is likely going to be a mess with Geno Smith at quarterback. Tyler Lockett and DK Metcalf are both elite talents, but Smith will hold them back, as will Seattle’s run-first philosophy. Both should be viewed as tourney-only plays in a tough matchup, but both are certainly capable of booming here despite a tough matchup. Dee Eskridge is in play as the WR3 and a cheap punt option. At tight end, we have a confusing situation. Noah Fant has always been viewed as a strong receiving option but Seattle’s preseason use of him was discouraging, to say the least. The Seahawks also gave Will Dissly a big contract, and Dissly is the better blocker, which supports Seattle’s run-first strategy. Fant can be played here, it’s not as if he won’t see the field, but I am very down on him and would prefer Dissly. 

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Overview

  • 3rd lowest total (42) on week
  • DEN favored by 6, the 4th largest spread (opened at 4)
  • DEN hasn’t made the playoffs since the 2015 season (Kubiak + Manning)
  • Nathaniel Hackett hired as HC of DEN, was formerly with GB as OC
  • Hackett + Aaron Rodgers led the league in pts/g in 2020 (31.5/g)
  • DEN avg 19.7 pts/g in 2021 // SEA avg 23.2 pts/g
  • SEA won their division in 2020 (12-4) but lost in the WC round (7-10 last season)
  • Russell Wilson was traded to DEN to work with Hackett
  • SEA HC Pete Carroll has made the playoffs in 9 of 12 years with SEA

Russell Wilson

  • Wilson only had 1 gm w/ 300+ pass yards last season
  • He had 5 300+ pass yd games in 2020 (322 // 315 // 360 // 388 // 390)
  • All five came in the 1st 8 games & SEA started 6-2 during this stretch
  • This was the “Let Russ Cook” season
  • SEA allowed 30.6 DK pts/g to QBs last season (2nd most)

Courtland Sutton/Jerry Jeudy

  • Jeudy only played 10 games last season: (0 gms over 100+ yds // 0 with 10+ tgts // 0 TDs)
  • Sutton had 3 games with 20+ DK pts: (27.9 // 28.0 // 23.4) 
  • All of these came within the 1st 6 WKs
  • These were the only games Sutton had 10+ tgts, 90+ rec yds, or scored a TD (scored 1 TD in 2 of these games, his only 2 TDs on season)
  • SEA allowed 34.8 DK pts/g to WRs last season (T-11th least)

Javonte Williams/Melvin Gordon

  • Williams atts:yds:TDs (203:903:4 TDs) // Gordon (203:918:8 TDs)
  • Williams rec:yds:TDs-tgts (43:316:3 TDs-53 tgts) // Gordon (28:213:2 TDs-38 tgts)
  • Snaps: Gordon (514) // Williams (551)
  • Gordon is 29 years old & in his 7th season
  • Williams is 22 years old & in his 2nd season
  • Expect another timeshare season between the two
  • SEA allowed the 2nd most DK pts/g to RBs last season (30.6)

Geno Smith

  • Geno is 13-21 career as starter
  • He went 1-2 in starts for SEA last season
  • 5 TDs (4 pass:1 rush):0 INTs in those starts 
  • Geno didn’t throw for many pass yds (209 // 167 // 195) or have many rush yds (-1 // 12 // 8) in his starts last season
  • DEN allowed 16.7 DK pts to QBs last season (3rd least)

DK Metcalf

  • In Geno starts: (6:58:0 TDs-7 tgts // 11.8 DK pts) // (2:96:1 TD-5 tgts // 17.6 DK pts) // (6:43:2 TDs-6 tgts // 22.3 DK pts)
  • Metcalf led the team with 129 tgts and had a 27% tgt share
  • He finished last season WR15 in PPR scoring & 11th in non-PPR 
  • He caught 12 TDs, 8 came in the 1st 8 WKs of the season
  • Metcalf’s increased his TD count every year in the league (7 // 10 // 12)

Tyler Lockett

  • Lockett had 6 games without breaking 10 DK pts: (7.1 // 6.4 // 5.5 // 3.2 // 4.3 // 6.0) 
  • But 5 games with 20+ DK pts: (29.0 // 34.8 // 29.2 // 30.2 // 27.0)
  • In Geno Starts: (2:35:0 TDs-7 tgts // 5.5 DK pts) // (2:12:0 TDs-3 tgts // 3.2 DK pts) // (12:142:0 TDs-13 tgts // 29.2 DK pts)
  • He had 107 tgts for a 23% target share
  • DEN allowed 33.5 DK pts/g to WRs last season (8th least)

Rashaad Penny

  • Penny has missed 28 games due to injury in his 4 year career
  • He only played in 10 games last season
  • Final 5 gms of last season: WK 14 (16:137:2 TDs // 29.8 DK pts) // WK 15 (11:39:0 TDs // 6.4 DK pts) // WK 16 (17:135:1 TD // 22.5 DK pts) // WK 17 (25:170:2 TDs // 35.5 DK pts) // WK 18 (23:190:1 TD // 28.0 DK pts)
  • Penny led all RBs with 671 yds & 6 TDs in the last 5 games of season
  • SEA drafted Kenneth Walker in the 2nd round, he’s questionable
  • DEN allowed 22.1 DK pts to RBs last season (T-11th least)

Noah Fant

  • Fant was traded from DEN to SEA in the Russell Wilson trade
  • Geno targeted TEs on 14% of throws in his 3 starts last season
  • DEN allowed 8.6 DK pts/g to TEs last season (4th least)