With a five-game winning streak in place, the Seattle Seahawks look to continue their current ride when they host the NFC West Division rival St. Louis Rams Sunday. Seattle (9-5), which clinched an NFC playoff spot this past weekend, will also look for a little revenge, having lost to St. Louis 34-31 in overtime in the season opener in the Gateway City. With Arizona’s dominant win at Philadelphia this past Sunday evening, the Seahawks are locked into a wild card spot. Meanwhile, St. Louis (6-8) and head coach Jeff Fisher, one of the NFL head coaches rumored to be on the hot seat, are playing out the string these last two weeks of the season having already been eliminated from post-season contention with Seattle’s win last Sunday at home over Cleveland.
Rams May Head West Permanently
The Rams, who have been rumored for a possible relocation back to the Los Angeles area, come into the game fresh-off a home victory a week ago Thursday over Tampa Bay. Heading into the Seattle contest, the Rams are under the direction of backup quarterback Case Keenum. In the win over Tampa Bay last week, Keenum was 14-of-17 for 234 yards passing and a pair of touchdowns. For the season, Keenum has thrown for 494 yards and three touchdowns.
Among the top receiving targets for the Rams are Kenny Britt (551 yards receiving, two TDs) and tight end Jared Cook (476 yards receiving). When it comes to the ground game, St. Louis has turned to their top draft pick out of Georgia, rookie Todd Gurley. To date, Gurley has rushed for 1,023 yards and nine TDs, though he was held to just 48 yards in the win over the Bucs.
For a team which has been better known for its defense in recent years, the Rams turn to Mark Barron (105 total tackles), Trumaine Johnson (six INTs) and Aaron Donald (11 sacks) to lead the way.
St. Louis, which again has been rumored for a possible move back to the West Coast, finishes out the last two weeks of the season ironically on the Left Coast; visiting Seattle and San Francisco, respectively.
Focus On Playoff Run
For the Seahawks, the focus is on getting healthy for the NFC playoffs, most notably getting starting running back Marshawn Lynch back from his recovery from abdominal surgery. In their win over Cleveland last Sunday, the Seahawks once again had a dominant game from quarterback Russell Wilson. During the recent five-game winning stretch, Wilson (3,538 yards passing on the season, 29 TDs) has thrown for 19 touchdowns and gone over 250 yards passing in four of the five games.
Looking for a little payback off the season-opening loss in St. Louis, expect the Seahawks to make a push for six straight victories come Sunday in the Pacific Northwest, while yet getting the band in-tune for another playoff run starting the second weekend in January.
Dave Thomas has been covering the sports world since his first job as a sports editor for a weekly newspaper in Pennsylvania back in 1989. He has covered a Super Bowl, college bowl games, MLB, NBA and more. His work can be found on Examiner.com.