Sloppy Seahawks use last-second defensive stand to squeak by Rams


Oct 28, 2013; St. Louis, MO, USA; Seattle Seahawks linebacker Bruce Irvin (51) intercepts a pass against the St. Louis Rams as free safety Earl Thomas (29) and cornerback Brandon Browner (39) look on during the first half at Edward Jones Dome. Mandatory Credit: Nelson Chenault-USA TODAY Sports

The Seahawks defense came up with a last-second goal-line stand to boost Seattle to a 7-1 record and a 14-9 victory over the St. Louis Rams on Monday Night Football.

Heavy-favorites coming into the contest, the Seahawks played sloppy from start to finish and survived just long enough to leave St. Louis with the win. The offense totaled just 135 yards and the defense allowed 339 yards to a team that was only a week removed from losing its star quarterback.

Rams quarterback Kellen Clemens, who started because of Sam Bradford’s torn ACL, threw for 158 yards and two interceptions, but also orchestrated a six-minute, 96-yard drive at the end of the fourth quarter that came three yards short of upsetting the Seahawks.

The Seattle defense, which was outplayed for most of the evening, came up with a tough fourth-down stop on their own 3-yard line with four seconds left in the game to preserve the win for the Seahawks.

Greg Zuerlein kicked the first points of the game to give the Rams an early 3-0 lead in the first quarter. The Seahawks offense, meanwhile, managed just 17 total yards in the quarter and punted the ball away on all three of their possessions.

In the second, Russell Wilson found Golden Tate for a 2-yard score to give the Seahawks a 7-3 lead.

The Seahawks took the lead into halftime despite being utterly outplayed for the entire half.

The Rams had 131 total yards in the first half, while Seattle had just 38, third fewest in the NFL in a first half this season. Wilson only had nine passing yards in the half.

The difference in the game was two interceptions by the Seattle defense, one of which set up the touchdown. The Seahawks now have 21 takeaways this season, most in the NFL.

In the third quarter, Zuerlein kicked his second field goal, this one from 28 yards out that narrowed the Seattle lead to 7-6. On the Seahawks’ next possession, Wilson found Tate for an 80-yard touchdown that made it a 14-6 affair.

Tate finished the game with five catches for 93 yards, 80 of which came on the touchdown.

In the fourth, Zuerlein kicked another field goal and the score was 14-9. He finished the day 3-for-4, his longest field goal coming from 33 yards away.

Wilson was under pressure for the entire night and was forced to adapt once again to a poor offensive line that was outplayed for the whole game. He was sacked a career-high seven times, hit 10 times, and went 10 for 18 for 139 yards and the two touchdowns.

Marshawn Lynch rushed for just 23 yards on eight carries. The Rams’ Zac Stacy rushed 26 times for 134 yards against a defense that had only allowed 91 yards per game coming into the contest.

The Seahawks will return home in Week 9 to take on the Tampa Bay Buccaneers (0-7), one of two winless teams left in the NFL.

Five of the Seahawks last eight games of the season will be played at CenturyLink Field, where they have won 11 consecutive games.

The Seahawks 7-1 start is its best record through eight games in franchise history.