With Wilson Faltering, Should the Seattle Seahawks Focus on Their Upstart Defense to Seal Playoff Win?

Published 01/09/2021, 11:53 AM EST
Nov 15, 2020; Inglewood, California, USA; Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson (3) runs with the ball against the Los Angeles Rams during the second half at SoFi Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Robert Hanashiro-USA TODAY Sports


A little over 2 weeks ago, the Seattle Seahawks and the Los Angeles Rams squared off at Lumen Field for a crucial regular-season game. With both sides looking to seal a playoff berth, the NFC West rivals were also vying for the division’s top seed.

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While the game ended in favor of the Seahawks, it wasn’t their franchise QB Russell Wilson who led them to victory. Instead, it was their strong defense.

Seattle Seahawks strong defense could hold the answers

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The Seattle Seahawks defensive unit has quietly established itself as one of the best in the league. In the second half of the season, the Seahawks limited their opposition to 1.5 points per drive. A stat that shows that the Seahawks are one of the best in the league at choking their opponents out.

The Seahawks defense was at the receiving end of a lot of flak last season. And at the start of the 2020 season, it looked much of the same for the Seattle-based outfit.

Over the course of their first 6 games in 2020, the Seahawks allowed an average of 480 yards and 28.6 points per game. This, however, is in stark contrast to their much recent form.

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Nov 15, 2020; Inglewood, California, USA; Los Angeles Rams tight end Gerald Everett (81) is brought down by Seattle Seahawks middle linebacker Bobby Wagner (54) strong safety Jamal Adams (33) and strong safety Ryan Neal (35) during the first half at SoFi Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

Over the course of their last 7 games, the side has conceded an average of just 14 points a game. Less than half of what they conceded in the early stages of the season. Even the amount of yards allowed is now south of 300 a game.

The last time the two sides met, Rams starter Jared Goff was fit and healthy. All that changed in the 4th quarter of the tie when he dislocated his thumb. The injury required surgery, and Goff is still not a certain starter for his side’s playoff game.

With inexperienced backup John Wolford playing in the pocket, the Seahawks could have their task made a whole lot easier.

Rams defense could pose issues for Wilson

If the Seahawks defense is good, then the Rams are even better. The LA Rams possess the best pass defense stats in the league.

They’re #1 in the NFL for yards allowed per game and yards per pass attempt. An inconsistent Russell Wilson could have a tough time against the Rams defense that boasts of the likes of All-Pros Aaron Donald and Jalen Ramsey.

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Dec 27, 2020; Seattle, Washington, USA; Los Angeles Rams defensive end Aaron Donald (99) sacks Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson (3) during the third quarter at Lumen Field. Mandatory Credit: Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports

As a matter of fact, in Week 10, when the 2 sides met for the first time this season, Russell ended the night with 2 interceptions and his lowest passer rating of the year (57.0).

This tie could very well end up going down to which side plays the best defense. Thus, for the Seahawks, it might be a good idea to make sure to shut out the Rams before they do the same to them.

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Shivayan Roy

739 articles

Shivayan Roy is currently an NFL writer at EssentiallySports. After completing his Masters Diploma in Journalism from the Asian College of Journalism, Roy functioned as a reporter for Goal.com and extensively covered the FIFA U-17 World Cup.

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