Historically, Denver has been something of a house of horrors for Seattle, especially during the Terrell Davis years. As a fan, you knew that Seattle’s defense knew that Denver was going to hand the ball to Davis running downhill. You knew that Seattle’s defense knew that on 3rd and long Denver would throw deep to Rod Smith. And, you knew that Seattle’s defense knew that they were powerless to stop it. Fortunately, this Sunday, with both teams at 7-4, and looking to establish new identities, none of that history is likely to matter much.
These are new times in Denver. Mike Shanahan's decision to bench erstwhile golden boy Jake Plummer for rookie Jay Cutler has proven once again that the backup quarterback is always the most popular guy in town. Since this is a Seahawks blog I don’t care to get wrapped up in Denver's QB controversy but I will make one observation about Cutler. Rarely has a rookie QB entered the league with such anticipation without the benefit of most fans and analysts having seen him play many (if any) college games. Vanderbilt, the red-headed stepchild of the fabulously overhyped Southeastern Conference, rarely found itself on national TV. I watched Cutler with some regularity over the 2004 and 2005 seasons, living as I do here in Steve Spurrierville. Ironically, the QB Cutler reminds me of most is Jake Plummer (with a better arm); right down to his penchant for playing his team into games with his right arm and his guts, and out of games with killer picks forced in to double and triple coverage. I anticipate truly interesting times ahead for Bronco fans.
In this game, even the “homerest” of Seahawks homers would have to concede that it would be an upset forSeattle to leave Denver with a win. Given its overall inconsistency there are too many "ifs" for Seattle to be favored. Denver has played better this year notwithstanding its own inconsistencies. Nevertheless, Seattle has more than a puncher's chance once we look at the matchups closely and factor in some of Denver's unknowns. I will start with special teams then look at both defenses and offenses.