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Seattle Seahawks: Stat Projections for Key Players vs. St. Louis Rams

Sam BeardContributor IIOctober 10, 2016

Seattle Seahawks: Stat Projections for Key Players vs. St. Louis Rams

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    Fresh off one of the most controversial victories of all time, the Seattle Seahawks head to St. Louis to play an up-and-coming yet still under-the-radar Rams squad. 

    The Seahawks dominated the Rams in their two matchups last season, winning by scores of 24-7 and 30-13. 

    In both games last year, the Seahawks looked much like the Seahawks of 2012—securing victories behind the stellar play of a strong defense and running game.  I look for that trend to continue this Sunday.

    Here are my stat projections for the Seahawks key starters and reserves, with no help from the refs this time.

Quarterback Projections

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    Russell Wilson 

    Analysis

    This year's passing game looks quite different with a smaller, more intelligent quarterback under center.  Looks can be deceiving, however, as the statistics still look the same on paper.

    The Seahawks are dead last in the league in passing, throwing for a woeful 128 yards per game. In my eyes, the reasons for such  low output are twofold:  First, Wilson has faced some of the league's toughest pass defenses in his first three games. Second, Pete Carroll has opted to roll with a conservative game plan, rather than let Wilson air it out, in an attempt to minimize turnovers.

    I believe the Seahawks will look to expand their passing game against the Rams this week.  Unfortunately, I just don't see Wilson having much success against an underrated secondary, led by free-agent acquisition Cortland Finnegan and second-round pick Janoris Jenkins, both of whom are playing at or near a Pro Bowl level. 

    The Rams are currently ranked 16th in the league in pass defense (238 YPG) and are tied for first in number of passing TDs allowed (2).

     

    Projected Stats Against Rams

    14-of-26, 150 yards, one TD, two INTs; four rushes, 24 yards

Running Back Projections

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    Marshawn Lynch

    Analysis

    With Marshawn Lynch leading the way (203 yards and two TDs in the two games), the Seahawks averaged 135 YPG rushing against the Rams last year.  This year, Lynch is averaging just over 100 YPG, while the Seahawks as a unit are averaging 141 YPG.

    The Rams weakness on defense is stopping the run.  They are currently ranked 21st in the league in rush defense (121 YPG allowed) and are tied for 31st in rushing TDs allowed (five).

    This matchup obviously favors the run-heavy offense of the Seahawks, and I look for Marshawn Lynch to build upon his strong start to the season.  There won't be many opportunities for carries behind Lynch, however, so don't expect much out of either Robert Turbin or Leon Washington.

     

    Projected Stats Against Rams

    22 carries, 145 yards, two TDs

Wide Receiver/Tight End Projections

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    Analysis

    Based on the first three weeks of the season, it's unlikely any one receiver or TE will have a big game against the Rams.  In three games, the Seahawks' leading receivers have netted only 43, 41, and 68 yards, respectively.

    No receiver has more than five catches in a game, and only Golden Tate has scored multiple TDs, thanks in part to a gift score on Monday night.

     

    Projected Stats Against Rams

    Golden Tate—three receptions, 45 yards, zero TD

    Sidney Rice—four receptions, 57 yards, one TD

    Anthony McCoy—one reception, seven yards, zero TD

    Zach Miller—three receptions, 24 yards, zero TD

Defense/Special Teams Projections

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    Analysis

    With a defense this deep, it's difficult to project who will have the better numbers.  One thing we can be certain of, though, is that this unit will produce.

    Currently, the Seahawks defense ranks first in points allowed (13), fourth in yards allowed (272), fifth in sacks (10), and first in forced fumbles (6). 

    This should spell trouble for a Rams team that has struggled to run the ball consistently and has turned the ball over five times in three games.  The Seahawks' defensive line should be able to control the line of scrimmage and force the Rams to abandon their running game quickly, allowing pass-rushing specialists Chris Clemons and Bruce Irvin to focus on their attack.

    On special teams, look for Leon Washington to have a big day as a punt returner.  Although he has yet to bring one to the house, he came close twice in Arizona, and he should have multiple opportunities for returns with the stingy Seahawks defense holding up their end of the bargain.

     

    Projected Stats Against Rams

    Kam Chancellor—10 tackles, one INT

    Chris Clemons—two tackles, 1.5 sacks

    Bruce Irvin—one sack

    Brandon Browner—four tackles, one INT, two PD, three penalties

    Leon Washington— two kickoff returns, 45 yards; three punt returns, 79 yards, one TD

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