The Seattle Seahawks visit the Jacksonville Jaguars in Week 14 of the 2017 NFL season. PFF previews the top player matchups of the game.
Coverage by: Mike Cahill
Matchup: Seattle Seahawks offense vs. Jacksonville Jaguars defense
- WR Doug Baldwin vs. Jaguars Cornerbacks – It doesn’t matter where Doug Baldwin lines up on Sunday, the Jaguars have two cornerbacks (Jalen Ramsey and A.J. Bouye) that rank in the top-six coverage grades among cornerbacks. Ramsey is second with his 94.2 while Bouye is sixth with his 89.3. They also have slot cornerback Aaron Colvin that has allowed zero touchdowns on 292 coverage snaps in the slot and is allowing the eighth-lowest average yards per coverage snap in the slot at 0.80. Baldwin is currently 15th in passer rating when targeted among wide receivers at 100.0 on 92 targets. Meanwhile, he is also averaging the 13th-most average yards gained per route run on 414 routes (12th in the slot at 1.71). With Baldwin’s receiving grade tied for sixth at 86.3, we are going to see a fun matchup.
- T Germain Ifedi vs. Edge Calais Campbell – In his matchup against the Eagles, the team with the league’s highest pressure rate, right tackle Germain Ifedi allowed three quarterback pressures. Considering he has had two games with six or more twice, it felt like a win for him. For the second straight week, Ifedi will face an edge rusher with an elite PFF pass-rush grade (Elite is 90.0+) in Calais Campbell, who owns a 90.0 pass-rush grade. Campbell is currently tied for seventh among edge defenders in total quarterback pressures with 55 (tied with teammate Yannick Ngakoue), though only 18 of them have come since Week 8. Ifedi’s pass-blocking efficiency over the last four games is currently tied for 31st among all tackles at 94.7, while Campbell’s pass-rush productivity ranks 34th among edge defenders at 9.4.
- QB Russell Wilson vs. Jaguars Pass Rush – Wilson was under pressure on 44.4 percent of his dropbacks (seventh most) in Week 13 while ranking fourth in passer rating under pressure with his 96.9. Week 14 will not be the time to rest, as the Jaguars are currently generating pressures at the fifth-highest rate at 37 percent of passing plays and are tied for fifth in total pressures generated with 225. Wilson has been one of the best quarterbacks under pressure since Week 10, as he has the fourth-highest adjusted completion percentage at 72.4, with two touchdowns and zero interceptions.
PFFELO Ranking: 12
Coverage by: Aaron Resnick
Matchup: Jacksonville Jaguars offense vs. Seattle Seahawks defense
- QB Blake Bortles vs. S Earl Thomas – Coming off his best game to date, Bortles has a tough test this week in what’s a great measuring stick for the Jaguars. With an adjusted completion percentage of 72 percent, Bortles is on pace for a career year in terms of his accuracy. One reason could be due to his deep passing, where his accuracy percentage of 34.1 represents a big increase from his 2016 numbers. Despite the Seahawks’ secondary struggling with key injuries, Thomas has continued to produce with an overall grade of 88.6 and a coverage grade of 90.1, which both rank fifth among safeties. In coverage, Thomas has allowed a reception once every 38.5 coverage snaps, while allowing 0.40 yards per coverage snap. If Bortles is going to try going deep, he’ll have to do it against Thomas.
- WR Marqise Lee vs. CB Shaquill Griffin – Aside from Week 12 where he saw shadow coverage, Lee has been peppered with targets over the past two months. For the season, Lee has an overall grade of 77.4, and despite lining up all over the field, he figures to see plenty of Griffin this Sunday. In his rookie season, Griffin’s overall grade of 75.5 ranks 58th among cornerbacks and now has an even bigger role due to Richard Sherman‘s absence. For the year, opponents have thrown at Griffin once every 5.9 coverage snaps, and he has allowed 1.10 yards per coverage snap. When against the rookie, Lee should be targeted frequently, but Griffin has shown things won’t necessarily come easy.
- RB Leonard Fournette vs. LB Bobby Wagner – While Fournette’s recent struggles could be due to his nagging ankle injury, the case could be made he has been a boom-or-bust runner. Since Week 5, 43.9 percent of Fournette’s rushing yards have come from five runs that went for 15 or more yards. That percentage is fifth among backs in that span, but none of the backs above Fournette have seen his volume of carries. Wagner will be given the task of stopping Fournette, and he’s in the middle of an absolutely dominant season. Wagner’s overall grade of 98.5 is the highest among all players at any position, and his grade of 91.5 against the run ranks second among linebackers. Against the run, Wagner’s 31 stops rank second at his position, and he has yet to miss a tackle in the passing or running game, which is notable with Fournette’s love for contact.