Seattle and Atlanta already gave us one of the regular season’s best matchups, a 26-24 Seahawks win in Week 5. But now Seattle travels to Atlanta, where a rested Falcons teams awaits — and we’re likely to get a whole bunch of RICHARD SHERMAN going up against JULIO JONES. Good on good. Hell, elite on elite. Get your popcorn ready.
And while I know Sherm doesn’t often leave his post at left corner, you can bet your ass that he’s taking dead aim at Julio — knowing full well that slowing Jones down is the key to leaving Atlanta alive, and that he’s the only DB left in the L.O.B. that can do the job.
You want a study of opposites, get a look at this matchup. Sherm and Julio. One guy doesn’t talk, one won’t STOP talking. Sherman’s excellence comes as much from technique and intelligence as it does from athleticism and ball skills. Julio is just a flat out freak — a 6-foot-3, 220-pounder with greyhound speed and sledgehammer strength, a can’t miss guy since the Falcons mortgaged their future to trade up to get him out of Alabama.
Last we saw these two battle, Jones may have diced up the Seahawks secondary for 7 catches, 139 yards and a score, but it was Sherman who got the last laugh — getting his hands on a pass headed to Jones that Earl Thomas picked off late to set up Seattle’s game-winning field goal. And then it was Sherman who MAY HAVE gotten away with one in deep coverage on Jones — a late, controversial, no-call that helped Seattle ice the win.
This is the matchup. This is what you want. Two of the game’s best — going head up. And Sherman has to do it. Because Thomas won’t be out there this time — a rebuilt Seahawks secondary needing to find a way to slow down the NFL’s best offense in their own house. And after nearly melting down mid-game when Atlanta exploited a handful of coverage breakdowns for easy scores, you know Sherm’s going to take things into his own hands — that fearless half-Compton, half-Stanford cat who’ll go head up with Julio — the most dangerous weapon on the most dangerous offense in the league.
Man’s game. CAN’T WAIT.