With the Seahawks getting back to work this week, here's a look at the schedule that remains for Seattle.
The Seahawks get back to work Monday following their bye, now facing 11 games in 11 weeks to end the season.
That could loom as a challenging physical test for a team whose core isn’t getting any younger. But it’s not one they haven’t faced before — the Seahawks last year had their bye after the fourth game winning four of the first six after the week off, with another game ending in a tie, to all but secure the NFC West title.
The bye week also serves as a good time to re-set the season and take a look at what is ahead for Seattle the final 11 weeks.
Here’s a rating of each of Seattle’s remaining 11 games in terms of just, well, how good of a game it looks like it’ll be.
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Like Drake, we’ll start from the bottom and work our way up.
11 — Nov. 26, at San Francisco: This game offers two reasons not to look forward to it — it probably won’t be all that exciting given how many of the recent Seahawks-49ers games have developed, and Seattle might have more of a chance to lose it than you’d think. This game comes on the Sunday following a Monday nighter against Atlanta, always a tricky turnaround. And while the 49ers are 0-6 they have lost each of their last five by three points or less, a streak that began with a 12-9 defeat in Seattle on Sept. 17, the first time that has happened in NFL history. The 49ers are due to break out at some point.
10 — Oct. 22, at New York Giants: This game is similar to the one above. The Giants are just 1-5, and last week the NFL flexed the Cincinnati-Pittsburgh game to the afternoon time slot to give TV viewers another option than just Seattle-Giants and Denver-San Diego to watch in the afternoon this Sunday. But as New York’s win at Denver Sunday night showed, the Giants are more than good enough to beat the Seahawks, making this one a game to watch mostly with gritted teeth.
9 — Dec. 10, at Jacksonville: Here’s another game that looms as mostly a nothing-to-gain, everything-to-lose proposition for the Seahawks. Jacksonville looks better this year, but as Sunday’s loss to the Rams showed, still deeply flawed. But as the only 10 a.m. game Seattle has all season following a cross-country trip against a largely unfamiliar opponent, it’ll be a nerve-wracker.
8 — Nov. 9, at Arizona: So what now to make of the Cardinals? They looked dead in the water, potentially playing out the string, following a blowout loss last week at Philadelphia. Then came Sunday and the rebirth of Adrian Peterson, and apparently the Cardinals themselves. Seattle hasn’t lost at Arizona since the opening game of the 2012 season, Russell Wilson’s first NFL game.
7 — Dec. 31, Arizona: Will the Cardinals’ Peterson-led revival last long enough to give this game meaning? Playoff seeding could also be on the line for the Seahawks as well as a chance to avenge having lost three of the last four in Seattle against the Cardinals.
6— Oct. 29, Houston: Maybe this is too low for a game featuring one of the NFL’s top young quarterbacks in Deshaun Watson — due to his quick maturation Houston is suddenly tied for second in the NFL in points per game at 29.5. But the fact that Houston superstar defensive end J.J. Watt is out takes some of the star power off this matchup.
5 — Nov. 5, Washington: As can maybe be said of almost every team in the NFL, it’s hard to know what to make of Washington, which almost blew a 17-0 lead Sunday against the 49ers at home and needed a late drive and controversial penalty to secure the win. But Kirk Cousins and a defense currently ranked fifth in the NFL will make this a challenge.
4 — Dec. 24, at Dallas: What looked like maybe Seattle’s game of the year when the schedules were announced has lost some luster with the Cowboys off to a 2-3 start and now facing having to play without Ezekiel Elliott for six games, which could result in Dallas playing for nothing by the time this game rolls around. Still, it’s America’s Team on Christmas Eve.
3 — Dec. 17, Los Angeles Rams: Are the Rams really going to be able to stay in the NFC West long enough for this game to have great meaning? The win at Jacksonville Sunday following the tough loss to the Seahawks the week before indicates maybe so. A game this week against the Cardinals in London will be especially telling. LA has its bye the following week (as does Arizona) meaning they could be 5-2 and assured no worse than a tie atop the NFC West standings heading into November with a win against the Cardinals.
2 — Nov. 20, Atlanta: The Falcons looked like the best team in the NFL at 3-0 and now, like most of the rest of the NFL, merely look confounding after losing two straight home games to Buffalo and Miami. But the return of Dan Quinn and Steve Sarkisian on a Monday night, and a rematch of last year’s playoff loss and most interesting regular season game make this one still worth great anticipation.
1 —Dec. 3, Philadelphia: Are the Eagles really for real? They have looked like it so far, likely to be at the top of just about everyone’s NFL power rankings this week following another impressive showing last Thursday with the win at Carolina. The Eagles play four of their next five at home before coming to Seattle meaning this game could have significant post-season implications.