After weeks of dominating opponents with a high-powered passing attack, things were bound to come back down to earth eventually for the Seattle Seahawks. That happened on Sunday as the Hawks struggled to move the ball on offense against the St. Louis Rams.
Most of the struggles came in the run game, as the team only picked up 60 total rushing yards. The team’s leading rusher was quarterback Russell Wilson who ran for 39 yards on six carries. Fred Jackson was the team’s second-leading rusher with 11 yards. The veteran only carried the ball twice. The team’s other three running backs, Bryce Brown, Christine Michael and Derrick Coleman, combined for a mere 10 yards on 14 carries.
The passing offense didn’t fare much better. Wilson was able to connect with Doug Baldwin and Jermaine Kearse for touchdowns, but the team couldn’t gather much momentum with the ball. Baldwin had eight catches for 118 yards while Kearse hauled in the late touchdown to make the final score close. The University of Washington product hauled in three catches for 38 yards.
Tight end Cooper Helfet chipped in with four catches for 43 yards. Helfet was forced into more snaps after starter Luke Willson left the game with an injury.
In total, the Hawks outgained the Rams in total yards. Seattle amassed 313 yards compared to the Rams 207 yards. However, turnovers were detrimental for the Seahawks.
On the day, Seattle fumbled the football five different times. The team lost two of them. One of the fumbles was recovered by the Rams for a touchdown. Seattle was unable to force any turnovers.
That score proved to be the difference for St. Louis.
The Rams didn’t light the world on fire offensively, but the team took care of the ball and found the endzone when it mattered. Quarterback Case Keenum completed 14 of 23 passes for 103 yards and a touchdown, while Todd Gurley scored a touchdown on 19 carries for 85 yards. In total, St. Louis outgained the Hawks on the ground with 104 total rushing yards.
However, the Rams’ defense was the star of the show. William Hayes in particular was a constant presence in the Seahawks’ backfield. The pass rusher totaled nine tackles, three sacks and four tackles for loss. Akeem Ayres and Eugene Sims also made an impact, combining for 13 tackles and a sack. Trumaine Johnson also intercepted Wilson. It marked the first time the Seattle signal caller was picked off since a Week 10 defeat at home against the Arizona Cardinals.
The Seahawks were also hurt by penalties. The hosts were called for 10 penalties. Those penalties set the Hawks back 83 yards and often negated big plays.
Seattle will travel to Arizona to take on the Cardinals in Week 17. The Rams return home to St. Louis to face the San Francisco 49ers.