Two desperate teams will take the field on Thursday evening as the Green Bay Packers and Seattle Seahawks square off. The Packers, coming off their most complete game of the season, venture to the historically unfriendly confines of CenturyLink Field hoping to remain in the playoff hunt before a pivotal divisional matchup at Minnesota.
One thing going for Green Bay is that Thursday football has been friendly to them.
Under Mike McCarthy since 2006, the Packers have been fairly dominant in Thursday games. Heading into this week’s game against Seattle, the first and only Thursday night game of the Packers’ 2018 season, Green Bay owns a 10-4 record in all Thursday games with McCarthy in charge. Green Bay has won its past three contests, including a 35-14 home victory over the Chicago Bears last season in which Aaron Rodgers threw for four touchdowns. On a Thursday outing coming off a short week, the Packers have been even better, posting an 8-2 mark since 2006.
But their opponent hasn’t been a slouch either. With Pete Carroll as head coach since 2010, the Seahawks are 7-1 in Thursday football. In fact, they have won their last six games, last losing all the way back in 2012. While Seattle’s superiority in the NFC has waned since the middle years of Carroll’s leadership, the Seahawks (4-5) still represent a tall task this week with a much stronger showing as of late since beginning the season 0-2.
Still, the Packers have been excellently prepared on an abbreviated weekly schedule overall with a 19-8 mark in McCarthy’s tenure. That not only includes those weeks in which the Packers have had Thursday night games after a Sunday contest, but those in which the Packers have competed Monday night before rolling into a regularly-scheduled Sunday game. Shortened weeks due to holidays also apply in this tally. Green Bay’s 5-1 record in these games over the past three seasons is favorable (they lost a Sunday game after a Monday game this season against the Los Angeles Rams, but had their bye week in between).
Fresh off a thrashing of the Miami Dolphins, the Packers enter Thursday night action with some momentum and will look to put behind recent struggles in Seattle. Green Bay has lost its last three road games against the Seahawks, including the demoralizing postseason loss of 2015. Its last evening game in Seattle in 2012 will always be remembered for the controversy surrounding it, but the Packers have an opportunity to remember this one as a launching pad in the 2018 season. After all, they have won the last three games at home in the series.
Thursday night has carried favorable results for both Green Bay and Seattle in their current coaching regimes. And this year’s clash will be one with playoff implications for both squads.