Seahawks and Jaguars set for a tight battle
Defences should rule in Florida
Sky Sports Action, 9.25pm Sunday
Seattle provided a signal of intent last week when they became only the second team this season to beat Philadelphia but the Seahawks have no room for complacency and have to go on the front foot again when they face Jacksonville.
Quarterback Russell Wilson was inspirational against the Eagles and with him in full flow the Seahawks will always have a chance, but Jacksonville are such a strong unit that they could take all the beating.
The Jaguars are in the thick of a duel with Tennessee for the AFC South title – each team have an 8-4 record – and much of the credit goes to their fearsome defence who have conceded an average of just 14.8 points a game, more than two better than any other team in the league.
Jacksonville have also allowed the fewest number of touchdowns – just 16 in their 12 matches.
On seven occasions this season their opponents have failed to score more than ten points, which goes a long way towards making up for the lack of confidence many observers have in quarterback Blake Bortles.
He could struggle against a Seahawks defence who cannot afford to be distracted by what should be a showdown for the NFC West title when the Los Angeles Rams visit CenturyLink Field next week.
With so much to play for it would be no surprise if this turned into a scrappy affair. While 40.5 points is not a substantial points line, it could still be too high in a game between two teams who have decent chances of going deep into the playoffs.
Under 40.5 points
1pt 19-20 Coral, Ladbrokes
Venue EverBank Field, Jacksonville, Florida
Weather Clear, 4C
Vegas handicap Seattle +2.5
Vegas points line 40
Guard Oday Aboushi is ruled out with a shoulder injury, while defensive end Dion Jordan is questionable with a neck issue.
Linebacker Telvin Smith (concussion) and cornerback Jalen Ramsey (hamstring) have been listed as questionable.
The points total has gone under the line in five of Seattle's last six away matches.
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