Keys to the game
Turning it over
Seattle didn’t win the turnover battle last week for the first time this season — the Colts and Seahawks each had two. And not so coincidentally, the Seahawks didn’t win — they remain 21-3 under Pete Carroll when winning the turnover battle. That will be another real key this week as the Titans have feasted on turnovers so far, forcing 11 while losing just three, second-best in the NFL. Seattle, though, is right there on their heels, forcing 15 while losing eight for a plus-seven margin, good for third. Seattle is a plus-five in two home games. Expect that trend to continue.
The Seahawks talked frankly this week about the need to fix their issues on third down — they have converted just 6 of 25 in the past two games. The Titans, meanwhile, have been especially salty on defense on third downs, allowing teams to convert only 18 of 64 for the season, good for 28.1 percent and third in the NFL. One key for Seattle is staying out of third-and-longs to prevent obvious passing downs, the situations when the offensive line — which will again be without starting tackles Russell Okung and Breno Giacomini — has struggled the most.
On the run
Despite the revolving door on the offensive line, the Seahawks rank second in the NFL in rushing at 159 yards per game, due in large part to the tackle-breaking ability of Marshawn Lynch and the scrambling of quarterback Russell Wilson. Tennessee wants to run the ball with standout running back Chris Johnson. But the Titans have struggled, gaining 116.8 yards per game, with Johnson averaging only 3.1 yards per carry. The Seahawks will hope to hold down the Titans’ run in early downs to set up passing situations and force backup QB Ryan Fitzpatrick into mistakes.