Coming off a loss in the Super Bowl, the Seattle Seahawks were expected to hit the ground running and dominate early this season. But Pete Carroll's team dropped an overtime loss to the St. Louis Rams in their season opener and lost four of their first six games.
Defensively, Seattle didn't look anything like the team that made it to the Super Bowl last season. But in recent weeks, they have rallied nicely and have now won six of their last seven games, and each of their last four games. That includes big wins over the tough Pittsburgh Steelers and Minnesota Vikings.
They have potentially tough games against the Rams, a team they have already lost to, and the Arizona Cardinals, the NFC West leaders who they have also lost to, back in Week 10. They are currently fighting for a wild card spot, and with those tough games remaining, they can't afford to drop Sunday's game against the Cleveland Browns.
The Browns are 3-10, out of postseason contention but in the running for the top overall draft pick. With games against the Seahawks, Kansas City Chiefs and Pittsburgh Steelers, losing out is a distinct possibility, which may not be the worst thing for the organization at this stage. Then again, with Johnny Manziel set to make his second consecutive start, he's potentially auditioning for the starting role heading into next season so playing well will be his top priority.
It shouldn't be a surprise that most experts around the Internet think the Seahawks will win the game. Over at CBS Sports, all eight of their experts picked them, as did all 13 experts with ESPN, all seven experts here at SB Nation and the OddsShark Computer.
|Ryan Van Bibber
|CLE vs. SEA
* * *
SB Nation presents: Seahawks fans show what makes the 12th man so special