The NFL's 2017 schedule was released Thursday night. Here's a look at what I predicted for the Seahawks. (Updates in parentheses to show how I did).
1. The Seahawks will open on the road
This one is easy. The first Sunday of the season is Sept. 10. The Seattle Sounders FC, which shares CenturyLink Field with the Seahawks, is hosting the L.A. Galaxy that night. So the Seahawks will have to be on the road -- unless the team wants to try to convert the field for a for Monday Night Football game less than 24 hours after the Sounders are done. But that Monday late game will probably go to the Chargers in their new Los Angeles digs.
Another possibility is the Sounders game gets moved to Saturday, but it has the potential for a primetime viewing audience, so it will likely stay put.
The Sounders are also scheduled to host games on Oct. 15 and Oct. 22, so the Seahawks won't be playing at home those Sundays either unless the Sounders slide.
Prediction: They open at Jacksonville, at Tennessee, or at the L.A. Rams
(Result: Seahawks will open at the Packers)
2. Five primetime games again
The Seahawks remain a popular TV draw as long as they keep winning and show their engaging personalities. So we should expect to see them under the lights five times for the third straight season.
The most likely candidates:
Arizona Cardinals -- they remain Seattle's biggest threat in the NFC West. This is likely a Sunday night matchup.\
Atlanta Falcons -- The defending NFC champs almost pulled one out at CenturyLink last season and defeated the Seahawks in the playoffs
Green Bay Packers -- Of course
San Francisco 49ers -- A team on the rebuild will probably be a Thursday night opponent for the Seahawks
Houston Texans or Indianapolis Colts -- The Seahawks often get a non-division opponent on their lone Monday Night appearance
(Result: Only four -- vs. the Colts, at the Cardinals on a Thursday, vs. the Falcons on a Monday and vs. the Eagles.)
3. But what about Thanksgiving?
Always a tough call. But guess who the Seahawks have to play on the road this season? The Dallas Cowboys. Seattle could be tapped to play in one of the traditional Thanksgiving games. Or perhaps the night game in Green Bay.
These are fearless predictions, so I am going for it: We'll see them on Turkey Day in Big D.
(Result: Nope. Seahawks will enjoy the day off)
4. Only one home primetime game
There's been this ongoing rumor that the NFL doesn't like to give the Seahawks home primetime games because the team is so dominant. Seattle is 19-3-1 in all primetime under Pete Carroll since 2010. And they continued that trend last year with blowout primetime home wins against the Panthers and Rams in December. I'm going to say the Monday nighter and one other game at home, the other three on the road.
(Result: Boy, was I off. They are getting three primetime games at home)
5. How many 10 a.m. games?
You know those dreaded early kickoffs? Seattle could have as many as five (Dallas, N.Y. Giants, Jacksonville, Tennesee, Green Bay). But the law of averages says a couple of those will be moved to an afternoon start if FOX or CBS needs a marquee late game. So assume the less attractive matchups against the Jaguars, Titans, and Giants will stay as early kickoffs.
(Result: Surprisingly, there is only one 10 a.m. kickoff on the schedule, Dec. 10 at Jacksonville.)
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