To get to where we needed to go, we just had to beat the St. Louis Rams; which we did, 27-9. We shut them out in the first half – when our offense was an interception returned for a touchdown and two field goals – and we took control in the second half – when our running game finally took hold and their defense completely fell apart emotionally.
Boy, it really is something. I TOTALLY underestimated the hatred the Rams have for the Seahawks. It seemingly came out of nowhere, but then I remembered Golden Tate’s taunting. While that earned him a tough day at the cleaners, it didn’t really jibe with why the Rams’ defense is so up in arms. I guess it’s just one of those things. We get under their skin. Hell, we get under EVERYONE’S skin. And yet, I don’t seem to recall our guys taking it to the extreme of warranting a penalty very often this season. At the very least, we’ve never had the kind of meltdown that the Rams suffered in the second half yesterday. That was a full-blown temper tantrum and it was happening on seemingly every play! Culminating with about a million penalties inside their 20 yard line (and one unlucky ejection).
Is it about the Seahawks talking an inordinate amount of shit? That has to be part of it. But, the hatred wouldn’t be so extreme if the Seahawks weren’t winning nearly as often. Nobody cares about the yapping 6-10 team. But, it’s frustrating when the 13-3 team is lording their awesomeness over you every chance it gets. And, quite frankly, I have to believe we’re also getting away with some stuff that the refs either aren’t seeing or ARE seeing but aren’t calling. A late push here, an inconspicuous kick to the shins there. When it comes to pushing and shoving after every play, that’s not in retaliation to words being traded. That’s players taking things into their own hands because the refs have let the game get out of control.
Which works to our advantage, because I like to think the Seahawks are smart enough to know when to say, “When.” We’ve had a lot of growing pains in this area since Pete Carroll took over and I gotta believe all that practice at being dirtbags has paid off in stopping just before a flag is thrown. Likewise, as the better team in most games, we’re going to get the benefit of the doubt. It’s just the way things are done, regardless of whether you think it’s fair or not.
The Rams had no shot yesterday. We held them to something like -2 rushing yards in the first half and 13 rushing yards total. We picked off two more passes and would have had a third if a wounded duck didn’t attract three of our defensive backs at the exact same time, at the exact same spot in the endzone. We were lucky that the deflected ball didn’t land in the arms of an oncoming Rams receiver. We were unlucky in that it appears Richard Sherman strained his back or some damn thing upon hitting the ground. Hope that isn’t too serious.
It wouldn’t be an NFL football game if there wasn’t a ridiculous call (or five) by the refs. Most egregious: stopping the play on a run-of-the-mill offsides penalty when it should have been a “free play”. You see these panty-waist refs doing this more and more in recent years; they’re so fucking torn up inside about anyone or anything even breathing on the quarterback that – when in doubt (and when not really in doubt) – they blow the play dead. On this particular play, the defender didn’t touch a Seahawks lineman. He was not Unabated To The Quarterback; he was, indeed, jumping backwards to try to avoid the penalty. Also, he didn’t draw anyone on our side off. It was a regular ol’ defensive offsides penalty that resulted in a quick pass to Luke Willson that WOULD have resulted in a touchdown. Instead? After the penalty, we threw a short out to Luke Willson who was tackled and suffered a high ankle sprain (some might say it was a dirty tackle, but I have yet to see a good replay). In all likelihood, Willson is gone for the year (I’m told he might make it back by the Super Bowl, but that depends on how he heals), and it could have easily been avoided.
Just a few quick game balls before we settle into a fun week of obsessing over the playoffs.
Kam Chancellor earns the honor of best defender on the field yesterday. This seems to be swapped around to a different player every week, but yesterday Kam really stood out as an enforcer (and the scariest guy on the team, bar none).
Brandon Mebane was absolutely DESTROYING fools along the line yesterday! My God, how he has never made it to a Pro Bowl, I’ll never know.
Golden Tate took a good, old fashioned ass-whuppin’ in that game yesterday, between the hard tackles he suffered as a receiver and the even harder hits he endured in the punt return game. Yet, he held onto the ball and was easily our best offensive player of the day (8 catches, 129 yards, 1 TD).
Finally, what can you say about Marshawn Lynch that hasn’t already been said? Loved the part of the game where the Rams defender’s helmet came off and Lynch continued to stiff-arm him in the face. Hey, bitch! Strap down and tighten your helmet properly and you won’t be made to look like the ass-clown that you are! You’re REALLY going to come after Marshawn Lynch? Do you WANT the beat-down of a lifetime?