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2012 Seattle Seahawks Schedule Features Games Against NFL Powerhouses: Fan Take

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A 5-1 stretch near the end of the 2011 season, along with the acquisition of quarterback Matt Flynn, should bring a lot of hope for 2012 for Seattle Seahawks fans. With the release of the NFL schedule for the upcoming season, we'll get a good indication as to just how far the Seahawks have come since their disastrous 2-6 start last year.

The 2012 Seattle Seahawks schedule is packed with NFL powerhouses. If the team can get through this season with a respectable record, it will show that the 'Hawks are back as a force to be reckoned with.

Here are a few games that I'm particularly looking forward to, outside of the annual division contests.

Green Bay Packers (15-1 in 2011) at Seattle Seahawks, Sept. 24

Monday Night Football at the Link, baby! I love, love, love it when the Seahawks host a Monday Night Football game. Not only do I get the rare treat of watching my favorite team live from way out here in central Indiana, but the 'Hawks always seem to play outstanding football on the big stage, especially at home.

And who better to tangle with than the Packers? Gosh, you think Flynn is going to know any of the guys on the other sideline? Flynn vs. Aaron Rodgers, head to head, mano a mano, student vs. teacher. The Packers trying to operate in front of the deafening 12th Man. Seattle's Top 10 scoring defense from 2011 vs. Green Bay's No. 1 scoring offense. This game is going to be awesome! I'm already drooling with anticipation.

New England Patriots (13-3) at Seattle Seahawks, Oct. 14

Tom Brady has never had the "pleasure" of trying to run his offense in front of the 12th Man. The last time the Patriots came to town--a narrow 24-21 victory for New England in 2008--Matt Cassel was running the show because Brady had blown his knee out in the first game of the year.

Much like the Green Bay game, the Seahawks defense is going to be challenged in this one. New England sported the No. 3 scoring offense in the league last year. But with 72,000 of their closest friends bringing the auditory pain crashing down on the Patriots for 60 minutes, I'm willing to bet that the defense will hold up just fine.

Given my location in the country, I'm also a fan of the Indianapolis Colts, so as required by state law, I despise the Patriots. Nothing would please me more than to watch Brady, Bill Belichick, and the rest of the Patriots flounder in Seattle when they can't hear themselves think.

Seattle Seahawks at Detroit Lions (10-6), Oct. 28

These aren't the same old Detroit Lions that have been so pitiful for so many years. No, these Lions won 10 games last year, boasted the No. 4 scoring offense in the league, and went to the playoffs. They even pounded Tim Tebow and the Denver Broncos 45-10 at the height of Tebowmania. 

Traditionally, the Seahawks turn into pumpkins when they have to travel into the Eastern Time Zone, so when they visit Motor City and face off against Matthew Stafford, Calvin Johnson, and crew, here's where we'll get a good look at how far the team has come. Seattle has to be able to win games against quality opponents east of the Mississippi River if they're going to be true contenders.

Flynn's experience with the Packers should come in handy here. His Jan. 1 coming-out party--six touchdown passes against the Lions--happened in Green Bay, but it was against a Detroit team that was trying to win, so Flynn had to beat their starters. He also has four years' worth of experience in preparing for the Lions twice per season, even if it was as a backup. Every little bit helps when trying to contain Stafford and Megatron at Ford Field.

In addition to these three challenging games, the Seahawks, of course, have two games against the San Francisco 49ers, who went 13-3 last year and narrowly missed a trip to Super Bowl XLVI. They face Tony Romo and the Dallas Cowboys (8-8) as well as Tim Tebow (or Mark Sanchez, I suppose) and the New York Jets (8-8) at home, and they have their seemingly annual trip to Soldier Field to take on the Chicago Bears (8-8), who were tearing the league up until Jay Cutler was lost to injury.

This season won't be easy, but it will be a great test packed with lots of exciting football.

The 2012 Seattle Seahawks Schedule

(Home games in bold)

Sept. 9: at Arizona Cardinals

Sept. 16: vs. Dallas Cowboys

Sept. 24: vs. Green Bay Packers

Sept. 30: at St. Louis Rams

Oct. 7: at Carolina Panthers

Oct. 14: vs. New England Patriots

Oct. 18: at San Francisco 49ers

Oct. 28: at Detroit Lions

Nov. 4: vs. Minnesota Vikings

Nov. 11: vs. New York Jets

Week 11 Bye

Nov. 25: at Miami Dolphins

Dec. 2: at Chicago Bears

Dec. 9: vs. Arizona Cardinals

Dec. 16: at Buffalo Bills (in Toronto)

Dec. 23: vs. San Francisco 49ers

Dec. 30: vs. St. Louis Rams

The author grew up in Washington State and is a lifelong fan of the Seahawks. He's also a Featured Contributor in Sports with the Yahoo! Contributor Network. You can follow him on Twitter at @RedZoneWriting and on Facebook.

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