Fans may still be reeling from the Seahawks’ Week 15 loss to the Jaguars on the road, but with the most important game of the season coming up on Sunday, Seattle has no choice but to look forward to its next opponent: the 9-4 Los Angeles Rams.
The Seahawks face off against the Rams at home on Sunday in a game that will likely determine the NFC West, and according to 710 ESPN Seattle’s Danny, Dave and Moore, the key to winning the contest will be another fast start.
“Seattle can’t start like it did in Jacksonville,” Danny O’Neil said. “The Rams are too talented to be a team that (the Seahawks) can outlast in the second half after they no-show on offense in the first half.”
Against the Jaguars, Russell Wilson was 9-of-15 passing for 36 yards and a 36.8 passer rating in the first half. Wilson also threw an interception, and the Seahawks’ offense converted just 2 of 6 third-down attempts (33 percent). The defense held the Jaguars to a field goal, but a 38-yard attempt by Seattle kicker Blair Walsh to tie it up before the half sailed right of the goal post.
Seattle’s offense has the tools to get off to a faster start, which it did in its Week 13 home contest against the Eagles. In that game, Wilson completed 10 of 12 passes for 101 yards and a touchdown to tight end Jimmy Graham in the first half, and the defense held the league’s top-scoring offense to three points.
At 8-5, the Seahawks not only need to beat the Rams, but will also likely need to win out for a postseason run. While the Seahawks leave Jacksonville with injuries to their two Pro Bowl linebackers (Bobby Wagner and K.J. Wright), the Rams are also battered after a home loss to the Eagles. They lost cornerback Kayvon Webster for the season to an Achilles injury, and saw cornerback Trumaine Johnson, left tackle Andrew Whitworth, and right tackle Rob Havenstein leave with injuries. (Of note, Rams head coach Sean McVay anticipates a return for those three players Sunday.)
“(The Rams) lost at home to a team that was down to its backup quarterback in Nick Foles, and while Carson Wentz played most of that game, including the go-ahead touchdown, they’re coming on the road to play again after losing one at home and they have no cushion left,” O’Neil said. “I’ll be interested to see which team comes out looking better.”
Listen to Danny, Dave and Moore preview Seattle’s upcoming game against the Rams, embedded above.