The Seahawks will return home in unfamiliar territory after dropping consecutive games for the first time in 2012 with a 28-24 loss to Detroit in the waning seconds.
Quarterback Russell Wilson put on another strong performance to lead the offense with 236 yards through the air and a pair of scores, but it was the Lions passing game that had the final say as Matt Stafford fired a late score to Titus Young from a yard away to secure the final margin.
Despite the 28 points surrendered to the Lions, Seattle still ranks sixth in the NFL in scoring defense at just under 17 points per game. The Vikings, by contrast, are allowing nearly 21 points per contest.
Jared Allen is tied for seventh in the league with seven sacks, the same number as Seattle pass rusher Chris Clemons.
Minnesota quarterback Christian Ponder, a second-year man from Florida State, is completing 65.3 percent of his passes for the season and has thrown ten touchdowns against seven interceptions.
Ponder’s main target has been Percy Harvin, who has 60 catches for 667 yards and three scores on the year. No receiver has more catches than Harvin, who is averaging 11.1 yards per reception.
Tight end Kyle Rudolph has also been a threat in the passing game for Minnesota and has hauled in five touchdowns for the year.After facing Jason Witten of the Cowboys, Rob Gronkowski and Aaron Hernandez of the Patriots and Jermichael Finley from Green Bay, the Seahawks have plenty of practice limiting the impact of pass catching tight ends.
But he will likely spend much of the afternoon handing the ball off to dynamic running back Adrian Peterson, who has rehabbed from a knee injury to lead the NFL in yards (775), yards per carry (5.1) and yards per game (96.9).
Seahawks running back Marshawn Lynch is second in each of those categories.
Head coach Pete Carroll said in his weekly press conference that third down defense was the deciding factor in the game against the Lions, but added that the Seahawks were able to do some positive things that they should be able to build on going forward.
“We had as many close games as anybody and we had a chance to win them all,” he said. “We will try and take those experiences and try to execute better.”