LA Rams next challenge is to test validity of Seahawks defense
By Bret Stuter
LA Rams game day poses quite the challenge. The Seattle Seahawks stout defensive play has them winning again. But how real is that Seahawks defense?
The LA Rams are not exactly playing lights out on offense right now. But they’ll need to figure a lot of things out quickly, because here come the NFC West leading Seattle Seahawks. Or rather, there go the Rams, into the lion’s den as the Rams travel to face the Seahawks in Seattle.
In the first game, it was the Rams defense that stole the stage. The Rams held the Seahawks to just 16 points, and harassed quarterback Russell Wilson the entire game. If you recall, the Rams defense held Wilson to just 22 of 37 for 248 yards, no touchdowns and two interceptions. And the Rams were able to contain Wilson by setting a solid edge and sacking him six times in the game.
Goff didn’t gaffe
The Rams offense played one of it’s better games of the season. After a error-filled outing against the Miami Dolphins, the Rams needed a mistake free game from the offense, and nearly accomplished that goal. The Rams were very efficient with their running game, putting up three touchdowns on the ground.
And inconsistent quarterback Jared Goff played a solid game. He threw for 27 of 37 for 302 yards and no touchdowns but also no interceptions. He did fumble the football once. But all in all, he put up a game winning performance against a division rival, something that is always welcome.
How good is Seahawks D?
We know that the LA Rams struggle with their identity so far this season. But suddenly the Seahawks poor defense is ‘fixed’? Well, that’s what head coach Pete Carroll stated today.
After all, the Seahawks have averaged giving up 16 points per game since losing to the Rams. But they have faced the Arizona Cardinals (10th), Philadelphia Eagles (25th), New York Giants (31st), New York Jets (32nd), and Washington (26th) offenses over that time frame. So how have they played? Since facing the Rams, the Seahawks have recorded 18 quarterback sacks and four interceptions. That pressure on the quarterback is a much better pace than prior to the addition of defensive end Carlos Dunlap.
Mirage or bona fide?
The Seattle Seahawks defense has improved dramatically since adding Dunlap. While still allowing offenses to move the ball, the Seahawks are now ranked as the 15th-stingiest defense to score against. But is that a mirage due to recent scheuling against some of the worst offenses in the NFL, or are they the real McCoy?
The real point is that the Seahawks offense remains one of the most dangerous scoring machines in the NFL. If their defense has truly improved, then the Rams are in for a tough game this weekend. Two teams, both with a crisis of identity. The game will determine which team has managed to solve the enigma first. Either the LA Rams offense or the Seattle Seahawks defense will emerge the better of the two.
This weekend will answer a lot of questions for both teams. This game is probably the most crucial one of the season. Go Rams!