The Seahawks have won only eight season-opening road games in their history, and in only one of those did they beat a team coming off a playoff campaign.
Throw out the 2012 “Fail Mary” game and the NFC Championship corker two seasons later, when Seattle rallied improbably to win in overtime after trailing 19-7 with four minutes remaining in regulation, and the Seahawks have not enjoyed much success against the Green Bay Packers. Especially at Lambeau Field, where the teams will re-engage Sunday (1:25 p.m. PT kickoff) in the 2017 season opener.
Seattle hasn’t won there this century.
The last victory was in 1999, Mike Holmgren’s first year as coach of the Seahawks. Since then, Seattle has dropped seven consecutive contests at Lambeau, including a 38-10 shellacking Dec. 11 in which QB Russell Wilson notched the same number of interceptions (five) as Aaron Rodgers had incompletions (18-for-23).
In Wilson’s two games in Green Bay, the Seahawks have been outscored 65-27.
Not only are the Seahawks accommodating visitors at Lambeau, they pull pratfalls more often than not when they open a season on the road.
In the Pete Carroll era (since 2010), Seattle is 1-3 in road openers, the only win coming in 2013 when the Seahawks launched what would become a Super Bowl-winning campaign with a 12-7 victory over the Panthers in Charlotte. Over the course of franchise history, the Seahawks are 8-15 in road openers.
Paltry as is that mark, it’s actually worse than it seems. In only one of those eight road wins did Seattle defeat a team that reached the playoffs (or had a winning record) the previous season. And seven of the eight wins came against clubs that went on to finish with losing marks, further diminishing the road win. A closer look at the eight season-opening road wins:
|Year||Opponent||Score||Prev. Yr.||How opponent fared after losing|
|1985||Bengals||28-24||8-8-0||Finished 7-9-0 under Sam Wyche|
|1988||Broncos||21-14||10-4-1||8-8-0 after losing Super Bowl XXII|
|1994||Redskins||28-7||4-12-0||Finished 3-13 under Norv Turner|
|1998||Eagles||38-0||6-9-1||Finished 3-13 under Ray Rhodes|
|2001||Browns||9-6||3-13-0||7-9-0 with Tim Couch at quarterback|
|2004||Saints||21-7||8-8-0||8-8-0 with Aaron Brooks at quarterback|
|2006||Lions||9-6||5-11-0||3-13-0 with Jon Kitna at quarterback|
|2013||Panthers||12-7||7-9-0||Went 12-4-0, won NFC South|
Seattle’s only win on the road in an opener over a club that had a winning record the previous season was Sept. 4, 1988 at Mile High Stadium, where the Seahawks, with two touchdowns from Curt Warner, defeated John Elway and the Broncos 21-14.
Denver was coming off a 42-10 loss to Washington in Super Bowl XXII and, after losing to Seattle to open 1988, fell to 8-8 in a Super Bowl hangover year.
Green Bay isn’t coming off a Super Bowl, but almost. After starting 4-6 last year, the Packers reeled off six consecutive victories, including the rout of Seattle, to finish 10-6. Green Bay then knocked the New York Giants and Dallas Cowboys out of the playoffs before falling to Atlanta 44-21 in the NFC Championship game.
During Green Bay’s eight-game winning streak, Rodgers threw 21 TDs, one interception and had a passer rating of 117.87, including an absurd 150.8 against the Seahawks (second-highest passer rating against Seattle, trailing Doug Flutie’s perfect 158.3 for Buffalo Dec. 23, 2000).
In his past two games against Seattle, Rodgers has five TDs and no picks for a rating of 132.7. No quarterback has done better against Seattle. In fact, Rodgers has a higher career passer rating against the Seahawks than any modern-era Hall of Fame quarterback (based on a minimum of five games vs. Seattle):
No non-NFC North team has notched more sacks against Rodgers than Seattle’s 17 (Dallas has 16), but that hasn’t mattered much since Rodgers and the Packers have outscored Seattle by an average of 27-18 in Rodgers’ seven contests against them, including 38-12 at Lambeau.
Sacks aside, the Seahawks have been easy pickings for Rodgers. Meanwhile, the Packers are Russell Wilson’s biggest nightmare.
In his past two outings against Green Bay, Wilson has tossed two touchdowns and nine interceptions for a passer rating of 43.94. Five of those picks were nine months ago.
Given that, it’s a surprise Green Bay is only favored by three.