The NFL likes these kinds of matchups, so it’s no surprise the first Monday Night Football of the NFL season will see the Denver Broncos and new QB Russell Wilson facing off against Wilson’s former team, the Seattle Seahawks. It should also be no surprise to see the Broncos, who are favored on the road, prevail against Pete Carroll’s team. And it’s not even just about Wilson, though Broncos fans are certainly excited to have a franchise QB for the first time since Peyton Manning retired.
What can we expect from the matchup, and for the season ahead for both teams? We break it down.
Why Denver Should Win
It sounds cliche to say the Broncos have the better team, even though they do. In fact, the Broncos had a pretty solid team last year, one that finished with a Top-10 defense in yardage and points. And now, they have an above-average quarterback, which means they feel very confident they can break the streak of six consecutive seasons without making the playoffs.
That’s not all that’s new in Denver, though. The Broncos also have a new head coach in Nathaniel Hacket and new ownership in the Walton-Penner group. And though they have a very tough division (Patrick Mahomes is looking like Patrick Mahomes in the best way), if they’re going to stumble, it seems more likely they’ll do so with a team other than Seattle, even while playing on the road to start off the season.
Lumen Field might be a complicated venue for opposing QBs, but Russell Wilson knows it pretty well.
Is Seattle in Rebuilding Mode?
Pete Carroll isn’t looking to rebuild. Instead, the Seahawks have retooled around Geno Smith, who beat out Denver’s former QB, Drew Lock for the starting job. And they do have some tools, like DK Metcalf, Rashaad Penny and newcomers Charles Cross and Kenneth Walker III. But Denver has a talented secondary, and Smith hasn’t exactly proved he can consistently make plays against a good unit.
Plus, having Wilson on the other team will surely be distracting for the team. Maybe Seattle can be a better team than people expect them to be, but it is indeed a tall order to ask them to start off with a win against the Broncos and former quarterback Russell Wilson. Stranger things have indeed happened in the NFL, but this probably won’t be added to the list.
The Denver Broncos and Seattle Seahawks will face off tonight at 8:15 PM ET.