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Washington Redskins vs. Seattle Seahawks: Prediction, preview, pick to win

By
The Sports Xchange
Kirk Cousins and the Washington Redskins face the Seattle Seahawks this weekend. Photo by David Tulis/UPI
Kirk Cousins and the Washington Redskins face the Seattle Seahawks this weekend. Photo by David Tulis/UPI | License Photo

WASHINGTON REDSKINS (3-4) AT SEATTLE SEAHAWKS (5-2)

KICKOFF: Sunday, 4:05 p.m. ET, CenturyLink Field. TV: FOX, Kevin Burkhardt, Charles Davis, Pam Oliver (field reporter).

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SERIES HISTORY: 17th regular-season meeting. Redskins lead series, 11-5. The Redskins are 6-1 against Seattle in regular-season games since 2001. However, Seattle won the last meeting, 27-17 on a Monday night in Washington in 2014. The Seahawks also have defeated Washington three times in the playoffs since 2006.

KEYS TO THE GAME: Both teams have made moves to help their offensive lines, but the Seahawks probably made out a lot better with their acquisition of former Pro Bowl left tackle Duane Brown.

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The Seahawks, held to a season-low 33 rushing yards on 21 carries last Sunday, are ranked 21st in the NFL, averaging 97.6 yards per game. They hope Brown, who has a lot of experience in their zone scheme, will help them get it going.

Coach Pete Carroll also said they are going to lean on Eddie Lacy as their main ballcarrier in this game. Lacy has rushed for 108 yards on 42 carries (2.6 average). His high carries in a game this season is 11, which he's had twice.

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A successful Lacy against Washington would take pressure off quarterback Russell Wilson, who nonetheless threw for a career-high 452 yards and four touchdowns in a 41-38 win against the Houston Texans last week.

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Washington hasn't been much better running the ball. They're ranked 17th in the league, averaging 105.4 yards per game.

The Redskins played Week 8 without three starting offensive linemen and one of their top backups, then proceeded to lose two more of their front five. Washington signed three offensive linemen last week, and their lack of chemistry could pose a problem at Seattle's loud stadium.

"We'll be ready for it the best we can," QB Kirk Cousins said. "We understand what we're walking into from that standpoint, and we know we have to communicate very well, verbally and visually, and be ready to go, from the first snap to the last."

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MATCHUPS TO WATCH:

--Redskins LT T.J. Clemmings vs. Seahawks DE Michael Bennett. Bennett could have a field day against Clemmings, who likely will start again in place of five-time Pro Bowler Trent Williams. Bennett has 5.5 sacks to lead Seattle. Clemmings was cut by Minnesota after training camp and claimed by the Redskins. He is Washington's third-string left tackle behind Williams and Ty Nsekhe (core muscle surgery).

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--Redskins WR Terrelle Pryor vs. Seahawks CB Richard Sherman. Sherman was once defending passes from Pryor in Seahawks practices when Pryor was trying to make the team as a quarterback in 2014. Now a receiver, Pryor will have to challenge Sherman in a completely different way.

PLAYER SPOTLIGHT: Seahawks LT Duane Brown. Brown, a three-time Pro Bowl player, fills the single biggest need on Seattle's roster but will still have just three practices under his belt before playing in a new offense. Brown will be tasked with helping stop Washington's best defender, Ryan Kerrigan.

FAST FACTS: Washington QB Kirk Cousins ranks third in the NFL with a 103.3 passer rating. He has six TD passes and an interception in his past three road games. ... RB Chris Thompson had 94 scrimmage yards last week. He leads NFL RBs with 442 receiving yards and is tied for second with three TD catches. He is the only NFL player to lead his team in rushing and receiving yards. He has six TDs in his past five road games. ... WR Jamison Crowder led the team with nine catches for a career-high 123 yards last week, his fifth career 100-yard game. ... TE Jordan Reed has six TD catches in his past six road games. His 19 TD catches since 2015 are tied for the most among NFL tight ends. ... LB Ryan Kerrigan had two sacks last week, his 10th career game with at least two. He has six sacks in his past seven games and 7.5 sacks in his past 10 road games. Since 2011, he ranks fifth in the NFL with 64.5 sacks. ... LB Zach Brown led the team with 12 tackles last week and leads the NFL with 75 tackles. Since 2016, he ranks second in the NFL with 224. ... CB Josh Norman had a fumble recovery last week. He has two forced fumbles, two INTs and five passes defensed in his past three road games. Since 2014, he is tied for fourth in the NFL with 52 pass breakups. ... Seattle QB Russell Wilson passed for a franchise-record 452 yards and four TDs last week. In his past five home games, he has averaged 304.8 passing yards, with 14 TD passes and four INTs. He rushed for a career-high 122 yards and a TD in the last meeting. ... RB Eddie Lacy has 631 scrimmage yards and four in his past six games vs. the NFC East. ... WR Paul Richardson had 105 yards and two TDs last week, his first career multi-TD game. He is aiming for his third straight game with a TD. ... TE Jimmy Graham caught two TD passes, including the winner, last week. He has scored in three straight games. ... DE Michael Bennett had 1.5 sacks last week. He has four sacks in his past four home games. He had a sack in his only career home meeting vs. Washington. ... CB Richard Sherman had two interceptions and two passes defensed last week. He had an interception in his only career home meeting vs. Washington. His 28 INTs since 2012 are the most in the NFL.

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PREDICTION: Washington's depleted offense figures to have a tough time doing anything against a Seattle defense that will be on a mission after giving up 38 points last week.

OUR PICK: Seahawks, 31-13.

--Chris Cluff

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