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Fact or Fiction: Keys for Giants vs. Seahawks


The Giants need to rush for more than 150 yards to win Sunday in Seattle.

John Schmeelk: Fiction - The Seahawks are one of the best run defending teams in the NFL, ranking third in rush yards per game and yards per rush. Only seven teams load the box with eight players more frequently than Seattle does, according to Pro Football Focus. Seattle has one of the best trio of linebackers in the league with perennial All-Pro Bobby Wagner, KJ Wright and rookie Jordyn Brooks. They also have Jamal Adams, who is one of the best players around the line of scrimmage in the league. Starting defensive tackles Poona Ford and Jarran Reed are loads in the middle of the defensive line as well. If the Giants want to win this game, they are going to have to win it through the air and might have to throw for at least 275 yards to win .

Lance Medow: Fiction – The Giants need to run the ball effectively to win but maybe they wouldn't have to go this far. Case in point, the Bills ran for just 34 yards against Seattle in Week 9 and the Rams had 106 the following week in wins against the Seahawks. Part of the reason? Seattle was plagued by turnovers in both games, something you can't count on.

It's going to take more than success in the run game to top the Seahawks. The Giants will need to protect the ball, prevent the big explosive plays on defense and slow down a Seattle rushing attack that is now back to full health with Chris Carson and Carlos Hyde.

View photos from Giants practice as they gear up for Week 13 vs. Seattle.

James Bradberry is the most important non-quarterback for the Giants in their matchup with the Seahawks.

John Schmeelk: Fiction – Let's go with Logan Ryan and Julian Love. Bradberry will certainly be important in how he plays against an excellent pair of wide receivers in DK Metcalf and Tyler Lockett, but safety play will be even more critical. The Giants have morphed in a zone-heavy team and their safeties playing assignment sound football over the top to prevent big plays from Russell Wilson will be critical. Wilson will buy extra time with his legs and the safeties have to remain disciplined to not allow his wide receivers leak behind the defense.

Lance Medow: Fact - In all likelihood, Bradberry will see a lot more of Seahawks wide receiver DK Metcalf than the rest of his teammates and the latter is Seattle's most dangerous weapon outside of Russell Wilson. Metcalf is 6-4 and has a very strong frame that allows him to make contested catches. You also need to deal with his blazing speed, which was documented in Week 7 when he chased down Cardinals safety Budda Baker on an interception and prevented an Arizona touchdown. Metcalf has had at least 92 receiving yards in eight of the team's 11 games and he leads Seattle with nine TD catches.

Jamal Adams is the biggest non-quarterback threat on Sunday.

John Schmeelk: Fiction - Adams, as a SAFETY, leads Seattle's defense in sacks and is tied for the most quarterback hits despite missing four games this season. He is a legitimate edge rusher and an excellent player against the run. With that said, no one talks about Bobby Wagner enough. He is probably the best middle linebacker in football and already en route to his sixth All-Pro season. He is a monster against the run, a good pass rusher, and very disciplined in coverage. He makes plays and forces turnovers. As good as DK Metcalf, Tyler Lockett, Adams and Chris Carson are, Wagner is one of the best players in football at any position and the Giants have to know where he is at all times.

Lance Medow: Fact – There's a very strong case for DK Metcalf but, on the defensive side of the ball, it's absolutely Adams. He's missed four games this season due to injuries yet he still leads the team in sacks (6.5) and tackles for loss (9). Adams is a Swiss Army Knife. He can play deep, up on the line of scrimmage, can tackle in the open field, make opportunistic plays and has a knack for tackling the quarterback. The Giants will need to be aware of his location on every snap because, in a split-second, he's more than capable of making a game-changing play. New York already knows that first-hand after Adams – as a Jet - ripped the ball out of Daniel Jones' hands in Week 10 last season and returned it for a touchdown. You can't overlook linebacker Bobby Wagner and pass rusher Carlos Dunlap, but Adams does a little bit of everything.

Russell Wilson is the frontrunner for NFL MVP.

John Schmeelk: Fiction - Wilson is a wonderful player. There is nothing he does not to like. He has the second-most touchdown passes in the NFL, but he is not having the season Aaron Rodgers or Patrick Mahomes are having. Both of those players also have at least 30 touchdown passes and have fewer than five interceptions. Wilson has an uncharacteristic 10 interceptions this year. The Packer and Chiefs have records as good or better than Seattle. Wilson is in the top five conversation, but he is not the front-runner.

Lance Medow: Fact - The Seahawks are 8-3 and in first place in the NFC West and Wilson is a big reason. Seattle's defense is starting to click, thanks to several players returning from the injuries and the acquisition of pass rusher Carlos Dunlap. Yet it's been an inconsistent defense. The Seahawks rank last in total defense and passing yards allowed per game, 26th in scoring defense, 29th in third-down defense and 24th in red zone defense. So how has this team won eight games? Well, Seattle is fifth in total offense, fourth in passing yards per game and third in points per contest. The Seahawks are averaging 31 points and Wilson has thrown for 31 touchdowns with 10 interceptions while completing 71 percent of his passes. This is his fourth straight season with at least 31 passing touchdowns.


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