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chiefStats: Five stats that could determine the Chiefs’ game against Seahawks

The latest edition of Chiefs stats takes a look at Sunday Night Football.

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Can you believe there are only two weeks left in the regular season? Where has the time gone?

This week, our attention turns towards the Seahawks, and below is their overview taken from Bill Connelly’s advanced stats guide.

Looking at the overview, the Seahawks aren’t exactly blowing the NFL away with their numbers. The Seahawks are in the middle or bottom half of the NFL in many categories — which is somewhat comforting.

1. Seattle’s home-field advantage?

Over the years, we’ve been fed some fairly strong storylines about how the Seahawks have one of the best home-field advantages in the NFL — but is this actually true in 2018?

Seahawks Home Record Since 2012

Year Record
Year Record
2012 8-0
2013 7-1
2014 7-1
2015 5-3
2016 7-1
2017 4-4
2018 4-2

The Seahawks were great at home in 2012, 2013, 2014, and 2016 — but not great in 2015, 2017, and 2018. In three of the past four seasons, the Seahawks have had more than two home losses on the season.

Will playing in Seattle be a difficult contest? The answer is yes.

But should we as Chiefs fans be afraid of playing in Seattle more so than any other location? My answer is “ehhhhh.... no”. The hesitation is because Seattle is still a good team, and they were dominant at home for a time period... but it looks like that time period has faded.

2. Seahawks vs good offenses

One area in which I saw the Seahawks were consistently attacked on social media was their lack of success against teams who have a good offense.

The Chiefs must turn this game into a shootout if they want to win, but the numbers above are hard to argue with.

The Chiefs offense is going to force the Seahawks to do some things they may not usually do — such as pass the ball more frequently. If the Chiefs can take the Seahawks out of their game, it could spell good things for the Chiefs.

In 2018 particularly, the Seahawks have had a difficult time against top offenses:

I know the Seahawks are a great team, and I don’t want to diminish their accomplishments, but all the numbers point to the Seahawks having problems with great offensive teams.

3. The Legion of Whom?

Storylines are consistently changing in the NFL, and oftentimes, old narratives die hard. The Seahawks are not the Seahawks of old, and any expectation of the Seahawks pass defense playing great on Sunday should be thrown out the window.

The Seahawks pass defense of old, is just that — old. This version of the Seahawks defense is attackable, and I’m going to paint a comparison that does a good job illustrating what the Chiefs are up against on Sunday.

I mean, we all know the Chiefs have the worst defense in the history of the universe, amirite??? ... but what if I told you the following:

If Mahomes does not light up the Seahawks defense, I will be very worried about the Chiefs’ chances of success in the playoffs. If Mahomes struggles in Seattle, that’s a very, very bad sign.

I’m betting on Mahomes playing well, and the Chiefs offense lighting up the scoreboard.

4. Seahawks offensive tendencies

So what exactly are the Seahawks offensively? If their defense is having as many troubles as listed above, how can they have a winning record (8-6)?

Well, the Seahawks offense has carried the team this year — on a side note, we should all expect a shootout in this game.

The Seahawks run a bizarre style of offense, that somewhat reminds me of Alex Smith’s era in Kansas City:

One thing about the Seahawks is they don’t turn the ball over. Another thing about the Seahawks is they run an odd run/pass blend.

It appears as though the Seahawks want to run a ball control style offense between the 20s, and then open up the passing game towards the red zone.

Unfortunately for the Chiefs, they are not good at stopping the run or holding quarterbacks from throwing a lot of touchdown passes. The Chiefs have allowed the ninth-most touchdowns to opposing quarterbacks, and they also allow a league-worst 5.0 yards per rushing attempt.

All signs are indicating this game will be a shootout, and it will probably be close.

5. Quarterback comparison

Many times in tight shootouts, it comes down to which quarterback can carry his team at the end of the game. This is why I think it’s important to run a comparison between Mahomes and Wilson.

QB Comparison

QB Y/A TD% INT% Rating
QB Y/A TD% INT% Rating
Wilson 8.0 (8th) 8.2 (2nd) 1.6 (5th) 111.6 (4th)
Mahomes 8.8 (*1st) 8.7 (1st) 2.1 (14th) 114.8 (2nd)

One key stat I normally jump towards is passer rating — because I have found passer rating has the highest correlation to winning football games over the years.

Fortunately for the Chiefs, Mahomes has the edge over Wilson in terms of passer rating. However, Wilson is close to Mahomes in many key metrics — pushing me to believe this game will be a shootout, and we’ll have to subject ourselves to even more Chiefs induced stress.

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