The Los Angeles Rams will host the Seattle Seahawks in Week 14 in a game that could decide whether the Rams make the playoffs. The Rams are currently 7-5, in third place in the NFC West.
Before Sunday’s game is played, the San Francisco 49ers and Minnesota Vikings hold the two Wild Card spots in the NFC. Considering that the 49ers are 10-2, it’s likely that Los Angeles will need Minnesota to fall short somewhere to get into the playoffs.
At the same time, the Rams can control their own destiny by winning the rest of their games. That will be easier said than done when their scheduled includes the Seahawks, 49ers, Dallas Cowboys, and Arizona Cardinals.
In the end, it comes down to what version of the Rams show up on Sunday night. On the other hand, Seattle has won five games in a row, which is the second-longest winning streak in the NFL behind the Baltimore Ravens.
With that being said, here are four reasons why the Rams will defeat the Seahawks in Week 14.
4. The Rams’ offense showed signs of life in Week 13
Last week against the Cardinals, Los Angeles was able to blowout their divisional foe 34-7 behind the play of the offense. It was arguably the first time all year that Jared Goff and the Rams’ offense looked like the group we saw torching defenses in 2018.
Goff easily had his best performance of the season as he completed 32 of his 43 attempts for 424 yards and two touchdowns. Above all, the fourth-year quarterback was able to avoid turning the ball over.
With the Rams’ offense showing signs of life, this Los Angeles team can absolutely secure a win at home. Since Sean McVay became the head coach of the Rams in 2017, four out of the past five games against the Seahawks have been decided by six or fewer points (with Los Angeles winning three out of the five).
3. Sean McVay is finally utilizing Todd Gurley more in the offense
From the moment the season began, McVay has been criticized for how he’s utilized Todd Gurley. Whether it be because of his knee ailment or just being stubborn, the All-Pro running back was an afterthought in the offense for a majority of the season.
However, in recent weeks, Gurley has seen his workload drastically increase. Over the team’s past three games, Gurley has touched the ball 20 or more times twice.
Before those two games, the dual-threat running back had yet to have an outing where he was given more than 19 touches. Despite Seattle having a stout run defense, the usage of Gurley in recent weeks is pleasant to see for the Rams.
2. The Rams have a run defense who can slow down the Seahawks’ rushing attack
The Seahawks are undoubtedly a run-oriented offense despite having Russell Wilson as their quarterback. Chris Carson has been the featured back for the past two seasons but now Rashaad Penny is beginning to also get involved in the backfield.
In Seattle’s past two games, Carson and Penny have combined for 331 rushing yards and three rushing touchdowns. There’s no doubt that the Seahawks want to keep their dynamic duo rolling on Sunday night.
While the Seahawks want to pound the rock, Los Angeles has a run defense that can slow them down. Through the first 13 weeks, the Rams have the 13th ranked run defense that allows 104.2 yards per game.
1. The Rams have Jalen Ramsey this time
Earlier this season, the Seahawks were able to squeak out a narrow victory over the Rams in Seattle in Week 5. Many people forget that Los Angeles should’ve won that game had Greg Zuerlein made a 44-yard field goal near the end of regulation.
Now, this time that the two teams meet, the Rams have Jalen Ramsey on their defense. It’s likely that Ramsey draws the responsibility of covering Tyler Lockett for the majority of the contest.
Since Ramsey arrived in Los Angeles in Week 7, the Rams have only allowed two teams to throw for over 200 yards. By looking at the box score, Ramsey hasn’t produced many statistics but he’s still playing at an All-Pro level.