Seattle Seahawks vs. New Orleans Saints - 1/11/14
New Orleans Saints (11-5) at Seattle Seahawks (13-3)
NFL Football: Saturday, January 11, 2014 at 4:35 pm (CenturyLink Field)
The Line: Seattle Seahawks -7.5 -- Over/Under: 48 See the Latest Odds
The Saints and Seahawks square off in the NFC semi-finals at Century Link Field with a berth in the NFC Championship game on the line.
The New Orleans Saints survived wild card weekend by outlasting the Philadelphia Eagles and now head to one of if not the toughest place to play in the entire NFL at Century Link Field in Seattle. The Saints finished behind the Carolina Panthers in the NFC South but still put up an impressive 11-5 mark and have a ton of weapons on both sides of the ball that should keep them up to speed with the ferocious Seahawks defense. New Orleans has already dropped a decision in Seattle this season by a score of 34-7 but they’ll look to make amends here and know that this is a do or die circumstance that could very well end their season prematurely before getting another shot of possibly taking down the Panthers. Drew Brees had another monster season behind centre and Jimmy Graham is far and away the game’s best tight end but the Saints will need to do a lot more on offense if they want to come away victorious as the Hawks defense is arguably the best complete unit in football. They would also love to avenge the last playoff loss they sustained in Seattle which came in their Super Bowl defense but this time they are the underdogs.
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The Seahawks had a very impressive season as they claimed the NFC West title and the top overall seed in the Conference giving them home field advantage throughout the playoffs. Seattle only dropped one of eight contests at Century Link this season and the Home of the 12th Man will surely be as vocal as ever in this one as they attempt to get back to the NFC Championship game and the Super Bowl. Seattle is dangerous on both sides of the ball as their defensive success is well documented but Russell Wilson is emerging as one of the game’s most dynamic signal callers and Marshawn Lynch might be the best bruiser back in the league. The key for Seattle here will be the play of their wide outs who often get overlooked but the likes of Doug Baldwin and Golden Tate are more than capable of winning a football game especially if the defense has success shutting down Lynch. Seattle should be able to dictate the pace of the game with the ground attack of Lynch and Wilson and the noise level I think will be too much for Brees to overcome. The only problem here is the line is crawling just above a touchdown and with this being the playoffs that is a little too much especially considering what we saw with the Chargers and Bengals. While I am not certain the Saints can win I do think they can keep it within reason as they play a much better game than they did a few weeks ago.