While it’s not really a secret that the Seattle Seahawks mostly rely on their strong and ball-hawking defense to dominate over the last two seasons, they can’t afford to have Russell Wilson get sacked 7 times in one game, managing to create a very sad 135 yards of offense against a division rival.
Luckily for them, the St. Louis Rams aren’t going anywhere this season, and don’t have the ability or the quarterback to get them touchdowns. Kellen Clemens threw two interceptions on his first start this season, allowing the Seahakws to win 14-9 thanks to short yardage situations, denying the Rams from getting into their endzone.
But the offensive line, which struggled before this season, especially in the loss to the Colts, has got to start playing better. The Rams do have a strong defensive line for the last couple of years, but a team with Super Bowl aspirations like the Seahawks can’t afford to have their quarterback so easily sacked or finish games with record-low numbers.
The last team to win a game with 135 or fewer total yards was the Dolphins against the Jets in 2010, a game that was also the last time a team with 7 first downs or less managed to win a game, just like the Seahawks. Seattle didn’t turn the ball over – they just got stuck, time after time, punting the ball nine times and averaging only 3.37 yards per play.
The Seahawks are averaging 140 yards per game on the ground this season, but Marshawn Lynch was held to only 23 yards, his lowest production in over two years. It’s also been over two years since he ran the ball only 8 times in one game, with the Seahawks gaining only 44 yards on 15 carries.
Wilson, dropping back 25 times in the game, was under pressure on 48% of them, and has seen pressure on 38.5% of his dropbacks this season, more than any other NFL quarterback. He has never before in his short career been sacked 7 times in one game.
However, the Seahawks still find ways to win – one of them is Wilson himself, always surprising with his responsibility and accuracy, finishing completing 10-of-18 for 139 yards and two touchdown passes, including an 80-yard completion with Golden Tate, who mocked safety Rodney McLeod on his way to the touchdown, earning himself a penaly for it. The Seahawks are 12-1 in their last 13 regular-season games with Russell Wilson, who has now won 18 games since entering the NFL, tied for second in the NFL over the last two seasons, trailing Peyton Manning by 2.
The defense did the other part, as usual, picking off Clemens twice: Richard Sherman with his fourth interception this season and Bruce Irvin with his first. The Seahawks are tied for the lead in the NFL with 13 interceptions this season (along with Denver) and have a total of 21 takeaways this season, more than anyone else in the league.
We were very fortunate. Under the circumstances with a new quarterback, they did a great job. We just couldn’t get going on offense. Fortunately, the defense hung together and gave us a chance to win the game.