Seattle Seahawks

Seahawks next opponent preview, the Arizona Cardinals

Arizona Cardinals head coach Bruce Arians called CenturyLink Field his team’s homefield. The Seahawks might have a different opinion on that.
Arizona Cardinals head coach Bruce Arians called CenturyLink Field his team’s homefield. The Seahawks might have a different opinion on that. AP

SEAHAWKS’ NEXT OPPONENT

ARIZONA CARDINALS (7-8)

1:25 p.m. Sunday, CenturyLink Field, Ch. 13

Line: Seahawks by 8.

Against the Seahawks: The series is tied at 18 wins apiece, with one tie, last season’s 6-6 epic slog in Arizona. The Cardinals have won two straight at CenturyLink Field and three of their last four in Seattle. That includes their 34-31 win over the Seahawks on Christmas Eve 2016 and 39-32 in Seattle on Nov. 15, 2015.

What to know: After not playing for five games, Drew Stanton replaced Blaine Gabbert as Arizona’s quarterback (regular starter Carson Palmer is out for year) last weekend against the Giants. And Arizona smacked New York 23-0 at home. Stanton completed 20 of 34 passes for 209 yards, two TDs and two INTs. That was Stanton’s first start since the Cardinals last played the Seahawks. He completed just 24 of 47 throws with a touchdown Nov. 9 against Seattle. … Stanton’s career numbers against the Seahawks: three games, all losses, with a 50.6-percent rate of completions, one TD, three INTs and a passer rating of just 57.3. Seattle has sacked Stanton seven times in those three games. … The Cardinals iconic receiver Larry Fitzgerald has 101 catches and is tied for second-most in the NFL. It’s his third consecutive season with 100 receptions, and the fifth such season of his 14-year career. This is his ninth season with at least 1,000 yards receiving. The 34-year-old is averaging six catches and 10 targets per game against Seattle, 155 receptions in 26 career games, with 11 TDs. … With workhorse David Johnson out since wrist surgery in September, the Cardinals’ running game is even worse than the Seahawks’. Kerwynn Williams is Arizona’s leading rusher through 15 games with 351 yards, and the Cardinals are ranked 30th in the NFL in rushing offense (84.7 yards per game). … The Giants actually out-gained the Cardinals 293-289 last weekend, but Arizona forced three New York turnovers. … Arizona is 14th in passing, 22nd in total offense and 25th in scoring. … The Cardinals have scored 18 or fewer points in nine of their 15 games. One big reason: Their offensive line has allowed 51 sacks, most in the NFC and third-most in the league behind Indianapolis (55) and Houston (52). … Arizona’s swarming defense has been much better: sixth overall and fourth against the run. … Chandler Jones leads the NFL with 15 sacks. He’s the strongside linebacker in Arizona’s 3-4 defense, but expect the Cardinals to get him over Seahawks’ right tackle Germain Ifedi no matter which side is the strength of Seattle’s formation on passing downs. … Former University of Washington star Budda Baker from Bellevue High School has become a rookie star, a Pro Bowl special-teams player and now starter at strong safety. He replaced Tyvon Branch, who tore a knee ligament in early November. Baker had just 14 plays on defense in Arizona’s first eight games. … Baker is one of four Cardinals selected to the Pro Bowl, with Fitzgerald, Jones and cornerback Patrick Peterson.

Quotable: “We’ve got a big one next weekend, now. All right? We know that’s our home field. We’re goin’ up there and kick their (rear ends).”—Cardinals coach Bruce Arians to his players in the locker room immediately after last weekend’s win over the Giants, on a televised video about Sunday’s game at Seattle’s CenturyLink Field.

gregg.bell@thenewstribune.com @gbellseattle

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