The changing of the guard.
That’s what the Los Angeles Rams’ 42-7 Week 15 demolition of the Seattle Seahawks represents.
Hoping to sustain their fading playoff hopes, the Seahawks entered Sunday’s game having won 11 of their previous 12 home games against the Rams, with nine of those wins by double digits. In what was the most lopsided loss of head coach Pete Carroll’s eight-year tenure however, we saw a Seahawks team that was undisciplined, unprepared, and most surprisingly, a team that quit.
The reality is that Seattle, in danger of missing the postseason for the first time since 2011, has been a poser all season long. Posing as a playoff team, posing as a shutdown defense, posing as an offense good enough to absorb its paper-mache offensive line – all while Russell Wilson has carried this team on his back. In the end, however, even the wizardry of No. 3’s talent could not overcome the mundane predictability of a stalled offensive scheme and an injury-ridden defense.
L.A. decimated the Seahawks on their storied home field Sunday afternoon and made a resounding declaration to the entire NFL with this reckoning: An undeniable changing of the guard.
And yet, this game was as much about the Rams’ growth as a championship caliber team as it was about the Seahawks’ ineptitude. Sean McVay’s young team announced itself as the new kid on the block. And for good reason.
The Rams have a coming of age quarterback, an otherworldly running back and a defense stout enough to handle even the most explosive of offenses. All of this to go with a take-charge offensive line – the only unit to start the same five players in every game this season.
Jared Goff’s rapid development in his second year has been a revelation, as has been McVay’s creative offensive concepts and play-calling. Mixing up-tempo patterns with a heavy dose of Todd Gurley, Los Angeles led Seattle 34-0 at the half, following a 57-yard touchdown run from Gurley on third-and-20 that was called only to set up a punt. Gurley, well on his way to a second All-Pro selection in his three NFL seasons, finished with 152 yards rushing (140 before the half), along with four total touchdowns.
The 10-4 victors didn’t so much as beat the 8-6 Seahawks as they embarrassed them. Things even got so bad that the home crowd, as loyal and fierce as any in pro football , booed its team off the field at halftime, only to shower it with more boos throughout the second half and following the game as well. In fact, a throng of 12s could be seen hitting the exits as early as halftime.
— Ted Land (@TedLandK5) December 17, 2017
The famed duo of coach Carroll and general manager John Schneider, who for years have created and sustained an elite team, will have much to ponder in the aftermath of this loss and in the upcoming offseason. One thing we know for certain is that the NFL is not a place for posers, something this roster is littered with.
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Follow Jordan Schultz on Twitter @Schultz_Report
Jordan Schultz is an NFL, NBA and NCAAB insider/analyst for Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at Jordan.Schultz@Oath.com.
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