Buffalo (4-4) at Seattle (4-2-1)
When: Monday, November 7th 2016
Where: CenturyLink Field, Seattle, WA
Time: 8:30 ET | TV: ESPN
The Buffalo Bills will look to stay in the Wild Card hunt when they travel to Seattle for a Monday night battle with the Seahawks. The Bills ran off four straight wins before dropping their last two games to AFC East rivals Miami and New England. They hope to go into their bye next week with some confidence as a brutal schedule awaits them that includes Pittsburgh, Cincinnati, and Oakland. The biggest issue for Buffalo is the health of star running back LeSean McCoy, who sat out last week’s game after being limited to 11 yards against the Dolphins in Week 7. McCoy, who ran for 470 yards and five touchdowns in Weeks 3-6, was limited at Thursday’s practice but is expected to suit up on Monday. Quarterback Tyrod Taylor would benefit most from the return of McCoy, with the Bills’ passing game ranking 31st in the league at 179.4 yards per game. Taylor has thrown nine touchdowns to only two interceptions this season, but has only completed 58% of his passes. The Bill are in the middle of the pack when it comes to defensive statistics, but are 25th against the run. Linebacker Lorenzo Alexander, who leads the league in sacks, was named AFC Defensive Player of the Month, but is questionable for Monday with a hamstring injury.
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Seattle has been a real tough team to figure out. They’re sitting at 4-2-1 despite averaging less than 20 points a game and with Russell Wilson really struggling at quarterback. Wilson, who is battling knee and ankle injuries, has zero touchdown passes and one interception in the last three games and has rushed for only 16 yards in 10 carries in that span. He does seem to do better against AFC opponents with 20 touchdowns and two interceptions in the last seven games against them. Rookie running back C.J. Prosise appears ready to assume a bigger role in the offense behind Christine Michael after accumulating 103 yards scrimmage last week. Defense is still the key to this team, ranking in the top 10 in all major categories including second in points allowed (15.6). Seattle allows 89.7 yards on the ground, but defensive end Michael Bennett is out and safety Kam Chancellor is questionable. Seattle has a tough stretch coming up that starts with a game at New England next week.
McCoy should play in this game, but he won’t be 100% and I expect the Seattle defense to slow him down. Taylor will get nothing through the air as Buffalo will struggle to score points in a loud environment. Look for Wilson to get back on track and for Seattle to blow-out the Bills on Monday night.
Pick: Seahawks -6.5