Green Bay Packers vs. Seattle Seahawks: Live Score and Analysis

Marlon Maloney@@marlonmaloneyCorrespondent ISeptember 4, 2014

SEATTLE, WA - SEPTEMBER 24: Green Bay Packers in the huddle during the game against the Seattle Seahawks at CenturyLink Field on September 24, 2012 in Seattle, Washington. (Photo by Kevin Casey/Getty Images)
Kevin Casey/Getty Images

Packers running back Eddie Lacy emerged as an elite running back in the absence of Aaron Rodgers last season, but injuries to the team's offensive line have thrust a rookie into the starting role.

Center Corey Linsley is forced to line up across from one of the best defensive tackles in the game, Seattle starter Brandon Mebane. Seahawks linebacker Bruce Irvin had a few words for reporters (h/t USA Today) to chide the Green Bay rookie:

I'm going to pray for him," Irvin said Tuesday of Linsley, a fifth-round draft pick out of Ohio State. "It's going to be a long night, man. We've got to just take advantage of it.

The weakness in the Packers' offensive line could be just the edge the Seahawks need to stuff Lacy in the backfield. Despite the proliferation of Green Bay's ground game, the Packers will remain a pass-oriented offense.

Aaron Rodgers is an elite quarterback who has had his offense humming throughout the preseason, and regardless of how well the Seahawks performed a year ago they must still prove themselves all over again.

Offensively, Seattle has a rookie offensive lineman of its own to be concerned with. Right tackle Justin Britt will be tasked with holding Clay Matthews or Julius Peppers at bay throughout the Thursday night contest. 

The biggest factor in the game has to be playing in front of "The 12th man" at CenturyLink Field, where the Seahawks have lost just once in two seasons (including pre- and postseason).

While the Packers pose several challenges for the Seahawks on both sides of the ball, this should make for an exciting kickoff to the 2014 NFL season.