You can almost hear MC Hammer in the back ground, “you can’t touch this.” That is what the Seattle Seahawks are thinking right now as they prepare to take on the Atlanta Falcons on Sunday. They are a physical team and they will bully the Falcons until they break. Players like RB Marshawn Lynch, CB Richard Sherman, Brandon Browner, DE Red Bryant and S Kam Chancellor, really all the Seahawks, play with a physicality that is unmatched in the NFL today.
Last week the Seahawks put a beating on the Washington Redskins‘ offense for the final three quarters. They could not compete. The only reason the Redskins were able to put up points in the first quarter was because the Seahawks’ defensive line was respecting Robert Griffin III. This week, QB Matt Ryan will not be so lucky.
The Seahawks will start rookie DE Bruce Irvin for the first time in his NFL career and this will work in Seattle’s favor. The Falcons have no rushing attack to speak of, so Irvin will be able to attack the quarterback for four quarters. Ryan is not going to have the best of times scrambling for his life all day.
You can say the Falcons are the best team in the NFC, and their record shows it, but take a look at their schedule: They beat two playoff teams all season long, including the Denver Broncos, before Peyton Manning got into his rhythm, and the Redskins. If the Falcons didn’t make the playoffs this year, they would have had to be a pretty terrible team.
Atlanta has a great offense. I will not take that away from them. Roddy White and Julio Jones are one of the best receiver duos in the NFL and “old man” Tony Gonzalez is still solid as a rock. Ryan has done a great job of delivering the ball right on the money for most of the season and if we throw out a couple bad games and he is right up there for MVP of the league. However, the Seahawks corners are bigger and they are going to want to hit. White and Jones like being physical, but they are going to change their mind when they go against corner backs that are 6’3″ or taller.
The Falcons have not faced a team like the Seahawks. When the they try to throw a punch, they are going to break their fist. If they want to catch the ball, they better be ready to get smacked. If they want to tackle Marshawn, they better be ready to take a ride.
Ryan and Gonzalez, along with most of the Falcons, have not had a playoff win in their NFL career. The Falcons’ numbers haven’t been that great as of late and to quote my man Richard Sherman, “Women lie, men lie, numbers don’t lie.”
Prediction: Seahawks 34, Falcons 17
Follow Kase Brammer on Twitter @KBlive33