Three key matchups: Seahawks vs. Patriots

Seahawks SS Kam Chancellor vs. Patriots TE Rob Gronkowski: This the power matchup of the game. The hard-hitting Chancellor against the rugged and fast Gronkowski. There certainly will be fireworks here. Chancellor is the tone-setter for the rugged Seahawks defense and is a thunderous hitter. Gronkowski lines up all over the field, with the Patriots trying find a matchup. "He's a great player, no doubt," Gronkowski said. "He plays fast, and he's all over the field. He knows how to make plays."

Seahawks RB Marshawn Lynch vs. Patriots LB Chandler Jones: Lynch has averaged 108 yards per game and 5.5 yards per carry in two playoff games. He helped to close-out Green Bay with a 24-yard touchdown round in the NFC Championship game. The Patriots know that it takes an army to bring the hard-charging Lynch to the ground. "They have a very powerful offense," Jones said. "Marshawn Lynch is a guy that could run through and run over your whole defense if you let him, if you don't wrap up."

Seahawks LB Bobby Wagner vs. Patriots RB LeGarrette Blount: Wagner was a two-star recruit coming out of high school and accepted his only offer, from Utah State. He's now a Pro Bowler on the NFL's top-rated defense. He'll lead the charge against the powerful Blount, who's had a troubled but productive career. He rushed for 148 yards in the AFC Championship game victory over Indianapolis.