Seahawks-Rams postgame recap: Stock Up, Stock Down report
Geno Smith, Seattle defense had something to prove against LA: Seaside Joe 1371
The Seattle Seahawks entered their Week 13 contest against the Los Angeles Rams in kind of a lose-lose situation. A loss against the Rams would obviously be a loss, on account of losing. But a win against the L.A. Rams would not carry as much weight as usual because never before has Sean McVay coached a team anywhere near as untalented as the roster he had on Sunday.
Even when McVay inherited a 4-12 roster from Jeff Fisher, with an offense that ranked 32nd in the NFL, the Rams of that season could play rope-a-dope with the Rams of this season.
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So the only way for the Seahawks to truly feel like they put forth an effort in Week 13 that erased the sour taste in our mouths about how they’ve played in their last two games would be to bruise, batter, and toy with the Rams, paving the way for Drew Lock to make his season debut in the fourth quarter.
That didn’t happen. And the only people who are banged and bruised right now are Seattle’s running backs.
But the Seahawks did get the win, beating the Rams 27-23 after Geno Smith finally did two things that Seattle has not done consistently enough in the last two years: Win a game on the final drive and finish an important drive in the red zone. Perhaps then the most positive takeaway from Week 13’s win—moving the Seahawks into seventh place in the NFC playoff standings—is not how Seattle started and played for three quarters.
It’s how the Seahawks finished.
Winning cures all and Seattle ended up learning some things about themselves that they really needed answers on before their final playoff push, like that DK Metcalf actually can finish spectacular catches and that Tariq Woolen really is the Defensive Rookie of the Year.
However, the Seahawks were also :36 seconds shy of losing to the worst team in the NFL. Can it be explained as easily as saying “Rams”?
Would you bet the rest of Seattle’s schedule (Panthers, 49ers, Chiefs, Jets, Rams) on that belief that this was just an ugly game against a team that the Seahawks always play ugly against? Because if the Seahawks do, and they’re wrong, they’ll continue to commit the same errors, week after week.
And they won’t be able to face John Wolford or one of the softest defenses in the league the next time. (But they will get to face the Rams again, so that’s not entirely true.)
Earlier in the season, we liked how the Seahawks started and we hated how they finished. Now, we hate how the Seahawks started and we LOVED how Geno Smith finished this game against the Rams. Can Seattle start putting together complete games beginning next week against the Panthers?
That will be the difference between a team that plays down to its competition and one that could go above and beyond.
WR Tyler Lockett
WR DK Metcalf
For the third time ever, Lockett and Metcalf both finished with at least 100 yards. Metcalf had eight catches for 127 yards and the game-winning touchdown. Lockett had nine catches for 128 yards and also had a touchdown; technically ALL of Seattle’s points on Sunday were “game-winning”.
I thought this was easily one of the best games of DK’s career and the way that he played increases the likelihood that Jalen Ramsey’s prime is in his past. Not every route by DK came against Ramsey, but he also wasn’t afraid of the former number one cornerback.
I also think this is one of the best games of Lockett’s career. Just an all-around perfect performance from one of the NFL’s best duos.
QB Geno Smith
If the Seahawks had lost this game without scoring at the end, the main storyline for me would be the fact that Seattle once again settled for three in the red zone because they couldn’t close out a drive. At that point, the Seahawks took a 20-16 lead instead of a 24-16 lead. That could have made it 24-24, at worst, after L.A.’s ensuing touchdown drive—which again is a reminder that today JOHN WOLFORD led a nine-play, 75-yard touchdown drive to give the Rams a 23-20 lead with 2:56 remaining.
But Geno Smith returned fire with a 10-play, 75-yard touchdown drive, completing passes to four different players. Geno finished 28/38 for 367 yards, 3 TD, 1 INT, 116.1 passer rating. He leads all NFL QBs in games with a rating over 100 (9, at least two more than any other QB), in games with at least 2 TD passes (11), and he is the seventh QB in Seattle history to throw for at least 360 yards.
More than acceptable! Leave your Geno game grades here:
CB Tariq Woolen
Special! Woolen’s three passes defensed is also the first time in his career that he had multiple PDs and he now has 12 on the season. He’s REMARKABLE.
OLB Uchenna Nwosu
Nwosu is the first Seahawks edge player to have at least nine sacks (Nwosu had two sacks on Sunday, giving him nine on the year) since Frank Clark in 2018.
Noah Fant, Will Dissly, and Colby Parkinson had seven catches on eight targets, gaining 76 yards and a touchdown. As a unit, they are the best tight end in the league! It’s not just how they make plays, but when. Any time the Seahawks need a boost, it feels like one of the tight ends is the spark.
LB Darrell Taylor
Strictly speaking on “stock status” then Taylor is going from sitting at the very bottom to at least moving in the right direction. Taylor had two QB hits and a vital sack late in the fourth quarter.
LB Bruce Irvin
To be fair, Bruce Irvin is basically like the 60th guy on the Seahawks 2022 roster. Everything is gravy since he ended up joining the roster and helped spark Seattle at a time when they desperately needed it. But he’s out of his element sometimes.
RB Kenneth Walker III
We don’t really address injuries in stock reports, but the Seahawks have to keep bracing for the worst at the running back position. Walker opened the game with a 30-yard run and unfortunately not much good happened after that at running back. Walker was jawing with Geno Smith during the game, then left with an ankle injury and did not return.
Seattle needs to probably call up a running back next week, Darwin Thompson and Godwin Igwebuike are on the practice squad, but it’s possible they’ll have Travis Homer back too. Hopefully, Walker’s fine.
LT Damien Lewis?
The Seahawks ran an “unbalanced line” and it didn’t work out well.
Seahawks run defense
The tackling was no better on Sunday! In fact, it is still atrocious. I don’t care who is to be blamed, but Seattle does not have great options in the front-seven. The Rams have THE WORST OFFENSIVE LINE IN THE NFL but the Seahawks were not getting pressure on Wolford and they weren’t stopping the run. You can talk about Jordyn Brooks, Cody Barton, Al Woods, Bruce Irvin, Quinton Jefferson, Poona Ford, Shelby Harris, etc. Doesn’t matter WHO you are talking about, it only matters WHAT you are talking about.
And what we are talking about on Sunday is that Seattle’s defense was bad against the worst offense in the NFL. Even the Panthers, next week’s opponent, is better. How can the Seahawks fix it in seven days?
Stock Up and Down Questions
Do we like Jordyn Brooks and Cody Barton?
Is Tre Brown on his way to starting soon?
Is DeeJay Dallas the toughest Seahawk?
Is Jason Myers the best kicker in Seahawks history?
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Just want to comment on the 4th down conversion Seattle gave up. Was I the only one who was saying “watch the Woolford bootleg!”?? Unbelievably bad contain on that side and wasn’t even that. It’s like no one even hypothesized it.
When you factor the challenge of the kicks, Myers is the second best kicker this year, behind only the GOAT Justin Tucker.
I knew Homer would be missed, and he was indeed. This is an easy game with Homer in. Geno may have even came out clean. We also probably force a fumble in one of the punts the rams fielded. But the impact to special teams was lower than I expected.
Tre Brown was put at the right time. This game should have been easy. It’s the perfect place for him to commit quasi-redshirt rookie mistakes.
I like Brooks and, to a lesser degree, Barton. Barton does great things, then awful things. Brooks used to be so reliable bringing guys down, he stepped back a little this year, but I don’t think he’s a liability.