The Seahawks Game specialized in games that went down to the wire in 2019.
An NFL-high 12 of their 16 regular-season games were decided by one score, as were both of Seattle’s playoff contests. The Seahawks went an impressive 11-3 in those games last season, with Russell Wilson consistently putting the team on his back with fourth-quarter heroics.
Odds are they’ll need a little more this season to maintain their playoff status. The NFC West is without question the best division in football, featuring four teams that reasonably believe they have a shot at making the playoffs.
With the NFL schedule being released Thursday, let’s take a look at how the Seahawks stack up heading into 2020.
Seattle Seahawks Schedule
Week 1 : Sun., Sept. 13 — Seattle Seahawks vs Atlanta Falcons (Mercedes-Benz Stadium), 1 p.m. ET on FOX
Week 2 : Sun., Sept. 20 — Seattle Seahawks vs New England Patriots (CenturyLink Field), 8:20 p.m. ET on NBC
Week 3 : Sun., Sept. 27 — Seattle Seahawks vs Dallas Cowboys (CenturyLink Field), 4:25 p.m. ET on FOX
Week 4 : Sun., Oct. 4 — Seattle Seahawks vs Miami Dolphins (Hard Rock Stadium), 1 p.m. ET on FOX
Week 5 : Sun., Oct. 11 — Seattle Seahawks vs Minnesota Vikings (CenturyLink Field), 8:20 p.m. ET on NBC (Sunday Night Football)
Week 6 : – BYE –
Week 7 : Sun., Oct. 25 — Seattle Seahawks vs Arizona Cardinals (State Farm Stadium), 4:05 p.m. ET on FOX
Week 8 : Sun., Nov. 1 — Seattle Seahawks vs San Francisco 49ers (CenturyLink Field), 4:25 p.m. ET on FOX
Week 9 : Sun., Nov. 8 — Seattle Seahawks vs Buffalo Bills (New Era Field), 1 p.m. ET on FOX
Week 10 : Sun., Nov. 15 — Seattle Seahawks vs Los Angeles Rams (SoFi Stadium), 4:25 p.m. ET on FOX
Week 11 : Thurs., Nov. 19 — Seattle Seahawks vs Arizona Cardinals (CenturyLink Field), 8:20 p.m. ET on FOX/NFL Network/Amazon Prime (Thursday Night Football)
Week 12 : Mon., Nov. 30 — Seattle Seahawks vs Philadelphia Eagles (Lincoln Financial Field), 8:15 p.m. ET on ESPN (Monday Night Football)
Week 13 : Sun., Dec. 6 — Seattle Seahawks vs New York Giants (CenturyLink Field), 4:05 p.m. ET on FOX
Week 14 : Sun., Dec. 13 — Seattle Seahawks vs New York Jets (CenturyLink Field), 4:05 p.m. ET on FOX
Week 15 : Sun., Dec. 20 — Seattle Seahawks vs Washington Redskins (FedEx Field), 1 p.m. ET on FOX
Week 16 : Sun., Dec. 27 — Seattle Seahawks vs Los Angeles Rams (CenturyLink Field), 4:05 p.m. ET on CBS
Week 17 : Sun., Jan. 3 — Seattle Seahawks vs San Francisco 49ers (Levi’s Stadium), 4:25 p.m. ET on FOX
The Seahawks are tied for the 13th-hardest schedule in football this season, based on their opponents’ 2019 rankings. The NFC West’s common opponents in 2020 are the AFC and NFC East, which looks solid on paper.
The New England Patriots will almost certainly take a step back in the post-Tom Brady era, and there is no obvious heir apparent in the AFC East, save a surprise improvement from Josh Allen. All four of those games are winnable, and the Seahawks will likely be favored in at least three of those contests.
The same can be said for the NFC East, which features two solid playoff contenders (Philadelphia Eagles, Dallas Cowboys) and another pair of teams (New York Giants, Washington) years away from contention. If the Seahawks simply manage to win the games they’re favored in and lose the ones where they’re underdogs, they’ll probably go 6-2 against common opponents.
Their non-common opponents (Minnesota Vikings, Atlanta Falcons) are two of the most high-variance teams in football, so let’s be fair and give Seattle a 1-1 split. That’s a 7-3 mark with six games remaining against a division that ranks as the best in football, bar none.
In other words: The Seahawks need to get things done against their NFC West foes. The San Francisco 49ers and Los Angeles Rams could just as easily find themselves 7-3 or 6-4 against non-divisional opponents. The Arizona Cardinals are probably a year away from actual divisional contention, but they have the talent to rise to around .500 with improvement from Kyler Murray and the arrival of DeAndre Hopkins.
It’s possible that no team in the NFC West loses more than eight games.
The only way Seattle reaches the postseason is if it manages to get at least three wins in the division, preferably four. Adding a seventh team to the postseason increases the odds for a solid-but-not-great team like the Seahawks playing into January, but this is going to be a gauntlet.