Recent history: The Seahawks defeated the Eagles at the Linc, 24-14, on Dec. 7, 2014. The series, which is tied, 7-7, began in 1976.
WHEN EAGLES RUN THE BALL
The Eagles are coming off their best rushing performance of the season - a 38-carry, 208-yard effort against the Falcons. Prior to that, the Eagles' ground game had been up and down much of the season. The loss of RT Lane Johnson, five games into his 10-game PED suspension, didn't help. But his replacement, Halapoulivaati Vaitai, has shown improvement. Much of the run success, particularly vs. Atlanta, has been on inside runs. Ryan Mathews, who got just nine carries in back-to-back losses to Cowboys and Giants, rushed for 109 yards on 19 carries vs. Atlanta. Rookie Wendell Smallwood, who is averaging 4.7 yards per carry, also ran the ball well, gaining 70 yards on 13 carries. The Seahawks are third in the league in yards allowed per carry (3.5). But the teams that have beaten them or played them close all stayed committed to the run.
WHEN EAGLES PASS THE BALL
Carson Wentz had 100-plus passer ratings in three of his first four starts, but none since. He's averaging just 6.1 yards per attempt in the last four games and has thrown just two TD passes in the last five games. With the exception of the Giants game, when he had a dozen throws of 20-plus yards, he's mostly been dinking and dunking. Over the last four games, 73.5 percent of his throws have been 10 yards or less. Twenty-three of his 25 completions last week against the Falcons were caught by either an RB (Darren Sproles, Ryan Mathews), a TE (Zach Ertz, Brent Celek) or a slot receiver (Jordan Mathews). The Eagles have gotten little from their outside receivers. Nelson Agholor hasn't had more than four catches or 42 receiving yards in a game this season. The Seahawks have given up a league-best six touchdown passes, none to Tom Brady last Sunday.
WHEN SEAHAWKS RUN THE BALL
With their best running back, Thomas Rawls, missing the last eight games with a leg injury, the Seahawks' ground game hasn't been very productive. They are 30th in rushing (77.7 yards per game) and 31st in yards per carry (3.3). That could change Sunday with the expected return of Rawls, who averaged 5.7 yards per carry last year as a rookie. The Seahawks are just 25th in rushing attempts (23.8 per game) and 19th in run-play percentage (39.1). Christine Michael has been their primary ballcarrier in Rawls' absence. But rookie C.J. Prosise, who had just nine carries in the first eight games, had 17 carries for 66 yards in Sunday's win over the Patriots. The Eagles are 24th in opponent rush average (4.4), but have held their last two opponents to 2.8 yards per carry. The Eagles really have had just two games where they've struggled vs. run: Washington (33-230) and Dallas (34-187).
WHEN SEAHAWKS PASS THE BALL
Russell Wilson is as good as any quarterback in the league at getting outside the pocket and extending plays. He only has thrown 10 touchdown passes, but has just two interceptions in 304 attempts and is fifth in the league in yards per attempt (8.03) and 10th in completion percentage (66.8). WR Doug Baldwin and TE Jimmy Graham are Wilson's go-to receivers. They have caught eight of his 10 TD passes. Baldwin has been targeted 65 times and has 50 catches, He has a team-high 14 third-down catches, including 13 for first downs, and five red-zone TDs. Graham has 42 catches and is tied with Baldwin for first-down catches (30). Despite playing with a depleted cornerback group, the Eagles held the Falcons to seven passing first downs, which was Atlanta's fewest in a game since 2009. Ryan's 54.5 completion percentage was his season-low.
The Eagles are first in the league in kickoff return average (33.7) and third in punt return average (14.1). They have two KRs for touchdowns. At 33, Darren Sproles still is one of the league's most dangerous punt returners. The Eagles' coverage units have been outstanding. They are first in the league in average drive start after kickoffs and have allowed opponents to advance just two of 53 kickoffs beyond the 25-yard line. Kicker Caleb Sturgis has made 23 of 27 field goal attempts. One of his misses was from 55 yards and another was blocked. Seahawks kicker Steven Hauschka has missed two sub-30-yard FG attempts, including a potential game-winner in their 6-6 tie with Arizona. Hauschka also has missed three PATs. Tyler Lockett had punt and kickoff returns for TDs last year and is averaging 27.2 yards on KRs and 9.8 on PRs this year.
The Eagles are 4-0 at home, but 1-4 on the road. Now, they're going to one of the toughest places in the NFL to play. The Seahawks are 31-5 at CenturyLink Field since 2012 and have lost to just two non-division foes at home during that time.
Domo's prediction: Seahawks 20, Eagles 17
1. Eagles DE Brandon Graham vs. Seahawks RT Garry Gilliam: Graham, who has a team-high five sacks, is the Eagles' best edge-rusher. He had one sack and set up another last week. Advantage: Eagles
2. Eagles S Malcolm Jenkins vs. Seahawks TE Jimmy Graham: Graham is one of the league's top two or three pass-catching TEs. His size and speed make him a difficult matchup. Jim Schwartz probably will mix up his coverage of Graham. Advantage: Seahawks
3. Eagles SWR Jordan Matthews vs. Seahawks NCB Jeremy Lane: Matthews has been targeted 34 times the last three games and has 23 catches, 11 for first downs. Advantage: Eagles
HOT AND NOT
Eagles: RB Ryan Mathews. Rushed for 109 yards and two TDs in win over Atlanta.
Seahawks: QB Russell Wilson. Has thrown five TD passes in last two games, averaging 10 yards per attempt.
Eagles: WR Nelson Agholor. Hasn't had more than four receptions or 42 receiving yards in a game this season.
Seahawks: PK Steven Hauschka. Has missed three PATs and two FG attempts of less than 30 yards.
@Pdomo Blog: ph.ly/Eagletarian.com