Seattle Seahawks: First Game Against Carolina Panthers is Crucial

Jeremy Brevard-USA TODAY Sports

The Seattle Seahawks have some high expectations for this season, as Russell Wilson and the ‘Hawks are projected by many to make an appearance and possibly win Super Bowl XLVIII.

First things first. The Seahawks must travel across the country and take on Cam Newton and the Carolina Panthers. Certainly the Panthers are not what you would call a Super Bowl contender, but in NFL vernacular, this game could be labeled in a particular way.

Namely, a “trap game.”

What this means is that the Seahawks are supposed to win. They are favored, and on paper Seattle is clearly more talented. However, the team must make a long flight and work out their first-game jitters in an unfriendly environment. The Seahawks are not going to sneak up on anyone this season.

Much can happen in the first game of an NFL season. Training camp and preseason can quickly become a distant memory once the ball is kicked off to start the regular season. The Seahawks must hit the ground running (with Marshawn Lynch, of course).

Keep in mind that the Seahawks lost their opener in 2005 before finishing the season 13-3 and making their way to the Super Bowl. Therefore, an opening loss can be absorbed. Still, the scrutiny could be magnified if Seattle is unable to get out of Carolina with a W.

One assumes that Pete Carroll will have his team ready to go against the Panthers, but they cannot look past this week. The San Francisco 49ers will be coming to CenturyLink Field in Week 2, but that hurdle must wait.

A loss to the Panthers won’t doom the season, but it would still be a bad way to start.

Todd Pheifer covers the Seattle Seahawks for Rant Sports. Follow him on Twitter @tpheifer, “Like” him on Facebook and add him to your network on Google+.


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