In what was an even tougher NFC West division then last season, the St. Louis Rams are looking to make a slight improvement to last years (7-8-1) record. Although they did not dominate the division like they did the past season, the Rams are looking to finish .500 for the first time since 2006.It will be a daunting task as they travel to CenturyLink Field to take on the Seattle Seahawks.
The Seahawks have been a dominating team all season with a (12-3) record and (6-1) at home. The 12th man is so effective at home they even registered a mild earthquake back in week 13 against the New Orleans Saints. They are a balanced football team that can beat you in multiple ways. Quarterback Russell Wilson has not shown any signs off a sophomore slump and they poses a top 5 running game behind Marshawn Lynch. Oh yeah, and they have the top ranked defense behind Richard Sherman and his league leading 8 interceptions.
Luckily for the Rams they won’t be airing the ball out as much against Sherman and the secondary as they have built their offense around Zac Stacy and the running game. He has really come into a groove even getting within 42 yards of 1,000 rushing yards with only 11 games as the starter. Kellen Clemens has also done a respectable job filling in for the injured Sam Bradford. In fact Clemens was one play away from pulling off the upset way back in week 9 against these same Hawks.
But if the St. Louis Rams want to actually pull off the upset they will need to rely on what has been working best for them, a running game and a dominate defense. Although the Rams rank outside the top 15 on defense, their run defense, led by defensive player of the year candidate Robert Quinn, is ranked 7th in the league. Quinn is rightfully in the discussion for DPOY as he leads the league in sacks with 18. Usually defensive ends can have a hard time sacking a mobile quarterback, but Quinn has shown he has a second gear of his own to make them pay for running.
The Seahawks have a lot more on the line in this game and will make it tough for the Rams to get anything going on offense. If the Rams want to end the season on a high note they will need to rely on the defense to get some turnovers. This is a young Rams team that is improving with every game they play. The St. Louis Rams may be a year or two away from playoff contention, but they have shown fight in them. Although they probably won’t get to .500 this year, a bitter loss to end the season may be the kick in the mouth they will need to get things going in 2014.