Last week was an utter disappointment, to say the least. A game in which the Rams should’ve definitely won, turned into an embarrassing loss to the New York Jets. That loss dropped them into second place in the NFC West and the NO. 5 seed for the playoffs. This week is crucial for the Rams as they take on the Seattle Seahawks who hold the No. 3 seed and are first in the division. A win could put them back into first and the No. 3 seed, while a loss and a Cardinals win could drop them out of the playoff picture altogether.
We’ve broken down three keys that could help prevent that from happening.
3. Next Man Up
Cam Akers won’t suit up this week as he suffered a high-ankle sprain that will have him sidelined for at least this week. Losing Akers is a huge blow for the offense as he’s dominated the run game for the Rams in the past four weeks. The Rams will now have to turn to the duo of Malcolm Brown and Darrell Henderson.
— NFL (@NFL) December 6, 2020
Both backs have taken a back seat view in recent weeks as they’ve combined for 23 rushing attempts for 78 yards and 1 touchdown. With Akers out of the picture, both should see an increase in their workload. However, the Rams will need them both to make the most out of it and help keep the run game alive to open up the field.
2. Better Play Calling
With so much on the line this week for both teams, the game may likely come down to the wire. Every down will be crucial in deciding the division and playoff picture. Lately, Sean McVay’s play-calling has been criticized by fans. Most notably was how he handled the Rams last drive against the Jets.
— Dov Kleiman (@NFL_DovKleiman) December 20, 2020
The Rams had 5 and a half minutes left in the 4th quarter to tie or take the lead. They marched all the way down to the Jets’ 37-yard line before taking not one but two deep pass attempts to take the lead. While there would’ve been no complaints had it worked, it didn’t and the Rams lost the game. Instead of going for the first down on 3rd and 4 or tying the game with a field goal on 4th down, the offense failed to convert. That can’t happen this week if the Rams hope to stay in the playoff hunt.
1. Get to Russell Wilson 2.0
The last time these two teams faced each other, Wilson was under a lot of pressure from the Rams pass rush. They managed to sack Wilson 6 times while adding on 12 QB hits. That kind of production stifled Wilson as he threw two interceptions. It shouldn’t be hard for the Rams to get close to replicating such numbers as they are tied for second in the league with 44 sacks.
Rams pick Russell Wilson off again 😳
— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) November 16, 2020
Washington’s defense put a lot of pressure on the MVP candidate during their matchup, holding him to only 121 passing yards throughout the whole game. The Seahawks offensive line has done a better job recently as Wilson hasn’t been sacked once in the past two weeks.
Los Angeles Rams (9-5) @ Seattle Seahawks (10-4)
Sunday, December 27, @ 1:25 PM on Fox