The game came down to one play. 4th down from the one yard line with four seconds left. Kellen Clemens in the shotgun, empty set, lobbed a pass to Brian Quick, who could not come down with the catch. And with that the Rams lost to the Seahawks 14-9.
The World Series was going on down the street, but the fans still managed to pick the Rams over the precious Cardinals on Monday Night, and would they get their money’s worth.
It almost seemed too good to be true, the Rams playing with their backup quarterback, outplayed the Seahawks out gaining them 339 to 135 and Zac Stacy rushed for 134 yards, becoming the first Rams running back not named Steven Jackson to rush for over 100 yards in a game since Brian Leonard in 2007. Not to mention the defense by far played their best game of the season, but yet it still was not enough, the Rams were missing that one play, that one play that would have shocked the nation.
The Rams took advantage of good field position by scoring a field goal to take an early 3-0 lead midway through the first quarter. The Rams once again got good field position on the next drive and had the ball inside the Seahawks 40 yard line only to have Clemens throw one of his two interceptions on the day, this one intended for Jared Cook. Cook ran the wrong route, and Clemens could have hit a receiver or two that were open on underneath routes. Clemens finished 15/31 for 158 yards.
The defense bailed the offense out, but the offense did not thank them in a proper manner. Clemens may have won the game for the Seahawks late in the second quarter by throwing his second interception, this one intended for Pettis who slipped on the route. The Seahawks did not let the Rams get away with yet another costly mistake. On third and goal from the one Wilson threw to Golden Tate on a slant for a touchdown.
The Rams were only down 7-3 headed into the half in a game where they had no business in being behind. Sound familiar? The “If Bradford would not have been hurt” comments are going to happen, but the fact is that, he wasn’t and the Rams backup quarterback, Clemens, had hurt the Rams in the first half by taking away a potential three points from the offense and then giving the Seahawks seven.
The Rams pulled within one point with another Greg Zuerlein field goal, but on the next Seahawk possession Russell Wilson hit Golden Tate on an 80 yard pass down the sideline and Golden Tate danced his way into the end zone extending the Seahawks lead to eight. Those 80 yards were over half of the Seahawks entire offensive production. Marshawn Lynch was held to eight carries that went for only 23 yards.
The Rams would not give up however, the offense lead by the second string quarterback, took the team all the way down to the three yard line only to be stopped to yet another field goal. The Rams had second and third and goal from the three yard line and instead of running the ball with Stacy who, quite frankly was having a great game, decided to throw the football two consecutive times.
On the next offensive possession the Rams drove down to the 33 yard line only to have Greg Zuerlein attempt a 50 yard field goal that just missed. The Rams forced the Seahawks to punt and the Rams would start their final possession from their own three yard line.
They would have to go 97 yards in 5:42 in order to win the game. Zac Stacy started things off with two runs that netted 26 yards to give the offense some breathing room. Stacy would sprain his ankle and come out which would prove to be costly.
Clemens lead the Rams offense all the way down the field to the two yard line, where the drive would eventually stall. Givens failed to pull in a catch on a slant route that probably would have been a touchdown, Richardson got stuffed, and then on the final play Zac Stacy came back in, only to have the Rams split him out wide and Clemens miss a covered Brian Quick in the corner of the end zone.
It was a heartbreaking loss for Rams fans for sure. The Rams should have won this game, but due to early turnovers, not capitalizing on opportunities(scoring touchdowns), and poor play calling, the Rams lost this game.
The Rams were not thought to have any chance in the game, but they proved everybody wrong. The defense stepped up and played the way everybody thought they would at the beginning of the season recording seven sacks and not giving the Seahawks anything all game. Jeff Fisher gave his team a chance to win. It’s just a shame the Rams could not come out with the upset under the lights in prime time.
Next week Jeff Fisher will get a chance to coach against his old team, the Tennessee Titans, and you have to wonder how this young team is going to bounce back after a tough loss such as the one they suffered tonight.