Who could have imagined the NFL game between the teams with the best records this week would involve the New York Giants (6-1) and Seattle Seahawks (4-3)?
The Giants’ mastery of the fourth quarter has led to this incredible start for rookie coach Brian Daboll. Meanwhile, the Seahawks lead all teams with 136 points in October.
Once again, the Giants are a 3-point road underdog with a total of 45 points at many of the top-rated sportsbooks.
We have a few NFL picks and predictions for this surprisingly important Week 8 matchup in the NFC.
New York Giants vs. Seattle Seahawks
Sunday, October 30, 2022 – 04:25 PM EDT at Lumen Field
Running Back Showdown?
In an NFL week that starts with Lamar Jackson vs. Tom Brady and ends on Sunday night with Josh Allen vs. Aaron Rodgers, it is rather hilarious that the top statistical quarterback matchup in Week 8 is between Geno Smith and Daniel Jones. Both rank among the top six quarterbacks in QBR this season with Smith at No. 4 and Jones at No. 6.
This is Week 8 already too, so this is not just a funny two-game sample size issue. The league is just turned upside down right now with Smith leading all quarterbacks in completion percentage (73.5%) and Jones (343) has more rushing yards than running backs like Najee Harris (329), David Montgomery (308), and Damien Harris (265).
But this could be a matchup where both running backs shine, as Saquon Barkley is second in the league with 726 rushing yards and rookie Kenneth Walker III has been an instant success for Seattle with 353 yards in the last three games since starter Rashaad Penny was injured.
Both backs can hit the big play, and that is a problem for defenses that rank among the bottom eight in yards per play allowed this season. Worse, the Seahawks have allowed a league-high 1,048 rushing yards. The Giants are not far behind at 1,011 yards, and runners average a league-high 5.7 yards per carry against New York.
The Player Prop Picks
It is a bit early in the week to get the betting odds on rushing yardage props for this game, but taking the over for Walker and Barkley would make sense.
Either way, both should be able to find the end zone in this matchup, so we would prioritize them as touchdown scorers.
If you had to trust one over the other, go with Barkley as the Seahawks have allowed 10 rushing touchdowns compared to four for the Giants.
NFL Pick: Saquon Barkley Anytime Touchdown Scorer (-139) at Bovada
Let’s Go Nuts and Take the Over Too
It seems like the Giants lose a starter on offense every week to injury, but as long as Barkley is in the backfield and Jones has his legs at quarterback, this offense is getting the job done with somewhere in the low-to-mid 20s in points.
The Giants also had a season-high 436 yards of offense in Jacksonville last week. This offense topped 400 yards one time in the last two seasons combined under coach Joe Judge.
No one is going to confuse this offense for being great yet, but it does seem to be improving. Three of its top four games in offensive EPA have been the last three weeks according to Pro Football Reference.
Meanwhile, the Seahawks have played in some real shootouts this year with finals of 27-23, 48-45, 39-32, and 37-23 as an upset win in Los Angeles against the Chargers on Sunday. Two of the very low-scoring games for Seattle were the division matchups with the 49ers and Cardinals.
The Over/Under Pick
Fun fact: Giants (eight) and Seahawks (seven) have recovered more fumbles than any other defenses in the NFL this year. This is not likely to sustain itself, so the Giants especially need to start doing more to intercept passes as they have just one this season.
But if you do not fumble the ball, then these defenses are not good at taking the ball away. Add in them not stopping the run well, and this has the potential to lead to a fair number of points that should be able to take care of the over for your NFL picks.
Even a 24-21 game would get a push at 45 points.
NFL Pick: Over 45 Points (-110) at Bovada
Final Giants-Seahawks Prediction: Does New York Get to 7-1?
The winner of this game is going to be right on the cusp of its preseason win total before November 1st, which is insane to think about. It is hard to say which one would be more surprising.
Every Giants game has been decided by one possession. Jones came into this season with a 3-14 record at game-winning drive opportunities, the worst record among active starters.
But Jones can now say he is the first quarterback in NFL history to lead five game-winning drives in his team’s first seven games. Crazy stuff.
That is also a valid reason to favor the Giants if this game is close in the fourth quarter. Seattle is 1-2 in close games this season, and Smith’s 3-15 (.167) record at fourth-quarter comeback opportunities is the second worst in the NFL, only ahead of Trevor Lawrence (1-10), who came up short with the Jaguars last week against the Giants.
There are other reasons to prefer the Giants in this one too.
The Giants blitz at a league-high 38.8% rate. In the four games where Smith has been pressured at least 25% of the time, he failed to lead Seattle to 20 points in three of those matchups.
Seattle wideout DK Metcalf suffered a knee injury on Sunday and his status is unknown for this game. He would be a big loss if he cannot play as he is a game-changing talent.
The Final Pick
Both running backs should eat well in this matchup, but I trust the Giants to get the job done, to increase that defensive interception total on the road, and get at least a cover, if not an outright win to move to 7-1 for your NFL picks.
Score Prediction: Giants 24 - Seahawks 23
NFL Pick: Giants +3 (-110) at Bovada
*The line and/or odds on picks in this article might have moved since the content was commissioned. For updated line movements, visit BMR’s free betting odds product.