Los Angeles Rams (4-9) vs Seattle Seahawks (8-4-1)
8:25pm ET Thursday on NBC
Rams head coach Jeff Fisher finally pulled the trigger last month, inserting overall #1 draft pick Jared Goff as his starting QB. Sadly, Goff’s been even worse than Case Keenum, the man he replaced. Goff last week ran his record to 0-4 with a 42-14 loss to the Atlanta Falcons, as he completed 24 of 41 for 235 yards, zero TDs, 2 interceptions – one of which was run back for a touchdown – and a fumble that was recovered for another touchdown. In summation, the Falcons scored as many points off Goff turnovers as the Rams scored all day, as the Rams didn’t see the end zone until the 4th quarter, by which time they were already down 42-0. Todd Gurley, the reigning Offensive Rookie of the Year, had a ho-hum day, carrying the ball 16 times for 62 yards and a touchdown, afterward telling the press his team “looked like a middle-school offense out there.” Gurley’s had a tough sophomore campaign, with his yards per carry down 1.5, and his yards per game off by 28.2, while he’s scoring touchdowns at half the rate of last season. While the offense has scored a league-worst 14.9 points per game, the defense has been only marginally better, allowing 23.4, despite holding teams to 340 yards. A big part of the problem is they seldom force turnovers, with just 13 all season, leading to a -11 differential. Incredibly, Fisher just got a contract extension in the midst of his fifth consecutive losing season with the Rams, then very next week, he tied Dan Reeves for the NFL record for losses at 165, and then hours later Rams owner Stan Kroenke pulled the trigger, canning Fisher. John Fassel, the Rams’ special teams coordinator, has been named interim head coach, and you can be sure he’ll have this ship turned right around in no time…
The Green Bay Packers awoke from their slumber last Sunday, and the Seattle Seahawks had the misfortune of being on the field when it happened, taking it on the chin 38-10, as the Seattle defense fell all the way from 1st to 4th in points allowed per game in the absence of safety Earl Thomas, who’s out for the year with a fractured tibia. The Packers wasted no time, as Aaron Rodgers hit Davante Adams as he streaked up the right side with a 66-yard touchdown pass on the third play from scrimmage. The Seahawks would counter with a 66-yard drive that culminated in a field goal, but the Pack then scored 24 unanswered points. Rodgers was the very model of efficiency, completing 18 of 23 for 246 yards and 3 touchdowns. While Rodgers was enjoying a career day, his defense was giving Seahawks QB Russell Wilson nightmares, as he hit on 22 of 39 for 240 yards, 1 TD and a career-high 5 interceptions – in fact in that one game Wilson doubled his total for the season – 3 of them leading directly to Green Bay touchdowns, and 3 sacks for a loss of 22 yards. The Seahawks O-line has been a problem all year, failing to give Wilson the time he needs to make things happen, if the secondary, typically a strength, starts flagging, Seattle is gonna have trouble – but not against the Rams.
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