Sat, Jan. 8 2011- The Seattle Seahawks (7-9) defeated the defending champion New Orleans Saints (11-5) by a score of 41-36. The Hawks’ victory marked the first ever playoff win by a team with a losing record.
Drawing a lot of comparisons to the Hawks’ 2010 NFC wildcard matchup, the Carolina Panthers seek to record the third ever win by a losing team in the playoffs this Saturday at CenturyLink.
In their last five games, the Carolina Panthers have remained victorious and outscored their opponents 138-59 in doing so. However, the Panthers’ weakness of schedule may discount the spectacle of their recent achievements, considering the fact that they have only one victory against teams above .500.
Out with a broken foot, the Panthers will play without DT Star Lotulelei. Poised to matchup with Lotulelei’s replacement, Hawks’ C Max Unger is healthy and ready to play after suffering a high ankle sprain in week 11.
These are how the last three matchups against the Panthers have played out, each of them having resulted in a Seahawks victory: 13-9 (2014), 12-7 (2013), 16-12 (2012).
After traveling to Carolina for the past three years the Panthers are finally making the trek to Seattle. Equipped with home field advantage the end result should resemble a score that is less indicative of evenness.
In their most recent contest the Hawks were able to contain Panthers’ QB Cam Newton through the air and on the ground. Newton was held to 171 yards passing, while throwing zero touchdowns an interception and averaging only two yards per carry.
Generating offensive points has and will be the only concern for the Hawks. If the Hawks can dominate while on offense the road to victory will be a downhill joy ride.