2008 Seattle Seahawks NFC West Predictions June 20th, 2008
By: NFL Handicapping Staff
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NFL Football Futures Betting – Advance look at Seattle
Our best Sportsbooks has got the NFL covered – sports betting wagers are available on any of the league’s eight divisions, not to mention the AFC and NFC champions, and of course, the winner of Super Bowl XLIII. One team who has been to the Super Bowl recently – in fact, just a few seasons ago – is the Seattle Seahawks, who will bid adieu to their head coach, Mike Holmgren after this season (he’ll stay on in an executive capacity) So can the Seahawks send him out with another ring, like he won in Green Bay? We’ll examine that today.
First, here’s a look at the NFL football odds to win the NFC West title as well as the NFC championship, as it is posted at Our best Sportsbooks:
BetUS NFL Futures Odds
To Win NFC West
SEATTLE SEAHAWKS -120
Arizona Cardinals +220
St. Louis Rams +550
San Francisco 49ers +650
To win the NFC Championship
Dallas Cowboys +350
Green Bay Packers +1000
New York Giants +750
New Orleans Saints +900
Philadelphia Eagles +750
SEATTLE SEAHAWKS +900
Tampa Bay Buccaneers +1400
Washington Redskins +1600
Minnesota Vikings +800
Arizona Cardinals +2000
Carolina Panthers +2000
Detroit Lions +2500
Chicago Bears +1600
San Francisco 49ers +3000
St. Louis Rams +3000
Atlanta Falcons +7500
Mike Holmgren, who has won four consecutive division championships, will be stepping down as head coach after this season and turning things over to his assistant head coach, Jim Mora Jr. Because a serious contender in the division has not emerged, the Seahawks are once again a solid favorite to win the NFC West and the automatic spot in the playoffs that comes with it. But that doesn’t necessarily mean things are going to be cakewalk for Seattle.
There is the issue of how the Seahawks are going to engineer a running game, or whether there is going to be a running game at all. It was more or less abandoned toward the end of the season, as Matt Hasselbeck’s game plan consisted of mostly short passes. This season Seattle has made additions to the ground attack while the wide receiver corps has not necessarily been upgraded. Julius Jones, who lost out to Marion Barber as the primary back in the Dallas offense, came over via free agency, and Seattle also signed T.J, Duckett to a contract. They join Maurice Morris, who filled in when Shaun Alexander (since released) went down with injury.
Unquestionably the running game is going to be a key, as Hasselbeck does not have a deep crew of receivers to work with, as he did last year. First of all, Deion Branch has just had reconstructive knee injury, so how useful he is going to be is a subject of question. Bobby Engram may not show up to training camp at all. D.J,. Hackett left and signed with Carolina. Nate Burleson may have to have a big season to make up for some of that. And there is hope that Hasselbeck will be able to make a major target out of rookie tight end John Carlson out of Notre Dame. Needless to say, there are questions all around.
The defense seems a little more stable. There is Pro Bowl-level defensive end Patrick Kearney, who was second in the NFL in sacks last season. The rushing defense ranked 12th in the league, but the Seahawks have to be at least a little worried about the strength of their interior defensive line, which allowed Green Bay to exert complete dominance on the ground in a snow-filled NFC playoff game. If rookie Red Bryant, a fourth-round pick out of Texas A&M, doesn’t prove to be productive right away, defensive coordinator John Marshall may find himself stuck for answers. But look – the linebacking corps is top-shelf; LeRoy Hill, Lofa Tatupu and Julian Peterson may be as good a trio as you’ll find anywhere. And the secondary can be a team strength, anchored by cornerback Marcus Trufant, who is one of the best in the business.
For some reason, Seattle has often had special teams concerns under Holmgren. he went ahead and drafted two specialists, which is highly unusual. Placekicker Brandon Coutu, the seventh-round choice out of Georgia, may wind up beating out inconsistent Olindo Mare, while Tyler Schmitt of San Diego State may bring some stability to the long snaps. He had better, as Seattle spent a sixth-round pick on him.
The question here really becomes whether Arizona or St. Louis is ready to make a breakthrough in the NFC West, as Seattle is a very flawed team which gets an edge over the others because it more solid defensively than the others and because it is more experienced in so-called “big-game” situations. At -120, they might be a solid play to win the division, because Holmgren seems to have always found a way. But beyond that, this team doesn’t have enough offensive talent to be exceptional.
JAY’S PREDICTION FOR 2008:
Seattle Seahawks — 10-6, 1st place, NFC West
(-150 to win NFC West, +350 to win NFC, +900 to win Super Bowl)
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