5 Greatest Rams vs Seahawks Games
The first meeting between the Rams and the Seahawks came in 1976, Seattle’s inaugural season. It was not a great game. Not even a good game. It was a rout in favor of the Rams. 45-6. The beat down was so bad, the Seahawks left the NFC and joined the AFC for 25 years. And just because the facts dispute the reason for the switch, it shouldn’t stop Rams fans from making this claim. The biggest reason for that is the Rams don’t have many bragging rights in the rivalry. In the 15 seasons between the 2002 realignment, until The Sean McVay era began, the Rams won only 11 of the 31 meetings. So, a little myth-making is needed to keep our egos intact.
But, in sports as in life, bragging rights are weighted heavily by recency bias and the McVay era has been very good for the #Mobsquad’s ego. They have gone 4-2 since 2017 and these have all been quality games. The recent Seahawks teams are a far cry from the basement-dwelling ‘76 team. All six games have all been important tilts on each team’s schedules and have had major playoff implications. This season is no different. The NFC West is a tight race and the winner of this year’s matchups may find themselves at the top. And the loser may find themselves on the outside, looking in through the playoff window.
The recent Rams vs Seahawks have been legit rivalry games, but even before it caught fire the two have played some great games. Here is a look back at the greatest Rams vs. Seahawks games.
2017 Series Split – Rams Play Spoiler
The Rams had a pretty good run against the Seahawks toward the end of Jeff Fisher’s tenure. From 2014-2016 the Rams won four of the six games. But the bad news for Fisher is he couldn’t beat anyone else. Those wins accounted for 23.5% of all the winning the team did in those three years. Long story short, the Rams fired him and hired Sean McVay.
McVay inherited a team that went 4-12 the previous season and a second-year QB that just had a trainwreck of a rookie season. Furthermore, McVay was untested and still in short pants, as far as NFL head coaches go. There was plenty of room for skepticism and no one could have predicted how dramatic the turnaround would be.
1,000 miles up the Pacific coast, the story couldn’t have been more different. 2017 was Pete Carroll’s eighth season as head coach and he had made the playoffs seven times, including back-to-back Super Bowl appearances. They also had Russell Wilson. There were no questions about Seattle. They were good. Period.
The first game came early on the schedule. Week 5. The Rams were off to a good start, 3-1. McVay’s talent was already apparent in the first few weeks of the season. The team was averaging 35.5 points per game and Jared Goff was looking like an MVP.
The Seahawks on the other hand were struggling. They were 2-2 and their offense was sputtering. It seemed that this would be the game that little brother would finally push big brother around.
In the first quarter, both team’s defenses bent, but wouldn’t break and each came up with a turnover. Points were finally put on the board early in the second quarter when Tavon Austin took a handoff 27 yards for a touchdown. It was a daring play call by McVay. It was third and 11, an obvious passing situation, but McVay called a run instead and was able to reap the rewards for a risky call. On the next offensive possession, they kicked a field goal to go up 10-0. That would be the last points the Rams would score in the game.
By half time, the Seahawks would tie the game. The Rams offense wasn’t shut down, but a missed Greg Zuerlein field goal and two Goff interceptions sealed the Rams fate. The Seahawks kicked just two more field goals in the second half, but that was plenty to get out of LA with a win.
The second game was in week 15. The Rams were rolling, they were 10-4 heading into the rematch. Seattle was still struggling, but they weren’t far behind LA in the West standings, 8-5. Both teams were coming off losses.
This game was nothing like the first. The Rams defense mauled Russell Wilson, sacking him seven times. They held him to 142 passing yards and held Seattle to only 78 rushing yards.
On offense, the Rams were also dominant. They scored 40 points, but rather than Goff bearing the burden, the Rams ran it down their throats. Goff attempted 23 passes for 120 yards. Todd Gurley ran for 152 of the team’s 244 rushing yards.
The Rams would go on to win the NFC West and make their first playoff appearance since 2004. To make the win even sweeter for Rams fans, this loss helped ensure that the Seahawks would miss the playoffs for the first time in five years.
2004 NFC Wild Card Game
This meeting was between a team on the decline and one heading up. 2004 marked the end of “The Greatest Show on Turf” era for the Rams. This would be their last playoff game until 2017 and in 2004, they snuck in by the hair of their chin. They went 8-8 and edged out Minnesota and New Orleans, in part by sweeping Seattle in the regular season. Meanwhile, the Mike Holmgren-led Seahawks won the NFC West every year from 2003-07, making the Super Bowl in 2005.
But the Rams weren’t about to ride peacefully into the sunset and allow the up and coming gunslingers to walk off with a playoff win. On the first drive of the game, Marc Bulger led the team down the field 75 yards for a touchdown. Torry Holt caught two passes on the drive. A 52 yarder that set the team up on the Seattle 11 and a TD pass 3 plays later.
In the second quarter, Bulger again connected for a 50+ yard pass, this time to Kevin Curtis. This pass set up the Rams second TD, which was punched in by Marshall Faulk. Less than two minutes into the second quarter and the Rams were up 14-3. The Seahawks offense had shown no signs of life. But on the ensuing drive, the Seahawks drove down the field and narrowed the lead to four points with a touchdown of their own.
The score remained 14-10 heading into the second half. The third quarter consisted of, essentially, two drives. A field goal for each side. Together they ate up 13:30 of the third quarter. After the Rams’ field goal, Matt Hasselbeck used the remaining 2:30 to move the ball into Rams territory. Less than two minutes into the fourth quarter the Seahawks took their first lead of the game with a 23-yard strike to Darrell Jackson, 20-17.
The Rams were, apparently, still in the mood to chew up time to get a field goal. Their next drive took the clock down to 8:01 in the 4th quarter and tied the game at 20.
On the following drive, the Rams defense came up big, pitching the only four and out of the game. The Rams offense took advantage. They got the ball back at the Rams 24 with 5:42 left on the clock. Bulger took two chunks of field away from Seattle. First on a 31-yard throw to Shaun McDonald, then on the next play, he took 17 more with a pass to Kevin Curtis. Then Bulger took the final 17-yard chunk away with a touchdown pass to Cam Cleeland to go up 27-20. That capped off a masterful 7 play, 76-yard drive.
Unfortunately, the Rams hadn’t taken enough time off the clock. With just over two minutes left on the clock, Hasselbeck was looking to give his team a chance to win. He started making his own chunk plays. 19, 20, 14, 12. All the way down the field to the Rams five-yard line with 27 seconds remaining. But he couldn’t pick up the final 5 yards. On fourth down, under pressure, Hasselbeck whipped a ball underneath to Bobby Engram, but he couldn’t hold on. Rams win 27-20
The Rams went on to get creamed by the Falcons in the next round and there’s that thing about not making the playoffs for another 12 years, but not a bad way to cap a great run. In terms of bragging rights; the Rams are undefeated against the Seahawks in the playoffs. 1-0.
2015 Overtime Game
In 2014, the Seahawks lost the Super Bowl. Russell Wilson was picked off at the one-yard line. Pete Carroll opted to throw, despite having one of the most bruising backs in the league. It’s one of the most memorable plays in Super Bowl history.
The Rams went 6-10 in 2014, 4th in the NFC West. There was nothing memorable about the 2014 Rams.
But in 2015, the two played one great game in the first week of the season. The game was a close one all the way through. A Tavon Austin punt return for a touchdown gave the Rams the largest lead of the game, 24-13. But Russell Wilson did that thing that he does and erased that lead.
A fourth-quarter forced fumble returned for a touchdown gave the Seahawks a lead, 31-24. But, Nick Foles came up with some heroics of his own when he connected with Lance Kendricks for a 37-yard touchdown pass to tie up the game with 59 seconds remaining. The teams were headed to overtime. This would be only the second time the teams would go to overtime in their 44 meetings.
The Rams got the ball first and set Greg Zuerlein up for a successful field goal. The Seahawks got the ball back with a chance to answer. Russell Wilson was moving the ball down the field slowly and effectively. The Rams got dinked and dunked into their own territory. But the Rams defense forced a 4th and 1.
Of course, Seattle was going to go for it. Everyone was on pins and needles two see if Pete Carroll would hand it off to Marshawn Lynch to save the game this time. He did and Marshawn was tackled for a one-yard loss.
Knocking the NFC Champs down a peg is always great for bragging rights.
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2000: The Track Race
Before the 2002 realignment, the Rams and Seahawks had played just seven times and this is the only one worth talking about and that’s simply because it was just a fun football game. There were a combined 71 points scored and only four punts.
This time it was the Rams coming off a Super Bowl appearance. They were road favorites coming into Seattle and looking at the numbers, Seattle never should have kept this game so close. They were bad on both defense and not much better on offense this year. But the game was close all the way to the end. The largest lead was a touchdown. Seattle was up by 7 once and the Rams twice, but on each of the next drives the other team struck back.
At half time, the score was 13-10 despite the Rams possessing the ball for over 20 minutes and offense outpacing the Seahawks by 152 yards. Kurt Warner had almost 100 more passing yards than Jon Kitna, but Warner had also thrown a pick-six. But that was the first half. For those keeping track, we still have 48 points left to go. And, spoiler alert, there is only one more punt in this game.
Right out of the gate, the Seahawks took the first drive down the field for a touchdown. Jon Kitna marched the team down the field in a well balanced orchestrated 11 play drive. The Rams had an answer. The answer was Kurt Warner’s arm. He threw the ball on seven of the nine plays, not missing one throw. Touchdown, but the Seahawks answered with a game-tying field goal. 20-20. 31 points to go. One-quarter of football to play.
The next two drives are back to back touchdowns. The Rams touchdown was set up by a huge 50-yard catch by Isaac Bruce deep in Seattle territory. Doing his best Kurt Warner impression, on the next drive Kitna threw for 78 yards to tie it back up at 27.
The next possession is that pesky last punt by the Rams. But as a good football game goes, Jon Kitna coughed up the ball on the first play of the next drive and the Rams returned it for a touchdown. Unphased, Kitna came back on the next drive, throwing for another 95 yards. The final throw of the drive was a 34-yard touchdown pass to Darrell Jackson, 34-34. 3 points to go.
Kurt Warner had 1:58 on the clock to get his team into field goal position to win the game. Six plays into the drive the Rams were at midfield with 32 seconds remaining. Warner had just been sacked, it was 3 and 17. But, Warner uncorked a bomb down the sideline to Torry Holt. A 41-yard competition, out of bounds at the 9-yard line. Jeff Wilkins came on to seal the deal with a 27-yard field goal.
Really there are no bragging rights coming out of this game. Seattle hung with the Super Bowl Champion and the Rams got to see Kurt Warner be a hero. Sometimes, everyone wins, right?
1-Point Loss: Rams Miss Playoffs
There were high hopes for the 2019 Rams having just come off a phenomenal season and a trip to the Super Bowl. Heading into the first Seattle game they were off to a good start. They were 3-1. The game before, they lost a high scoring shootout to a frisky Tampa Bay team. The Seahawks were also 3-1. For the first time in a while, the two teams were evenly matched and this game bore that out.
The largest lead of the game was six points and the lead changed hands six times. The biggest difference between the two teams was how they went about moving the ball. Jared Goff threw the ball 49 times for 395 yards, while the Seahawks ran the ball 43 times for 167 yards. The Seahawks also were able to hold the Rams to three field goals rather than giving up touchdowns. The Seahawks, on the other hand, scored four touchdowns and a field goal.
By mid-way through the fourth quarter, LA had a five-point lead. With 9:19 remaining, the Seahawks got the ball back and orchestrated an amazing 12 play, 75-yard drive to take the lead back. The drive only had two plays for more than 10 yards, yet the Seahawks continued to take ground and take time off the clock. When it was all said and done, the score was 30-29 and there was only 2:28 left of the clock.
After two four and outs, the Rams had the ball back with just 1:38 left on the clock. In order to preserve some time to work with the Rams had burned their last timeouts in the previous possession.
It was Goff’s chance to do a Kurt Warner impression. And he almost did. He completed eight passes to set up Greg Zuerlein for the game-winning 44-yard field goal. Zuerlein missed to the right by less than a foot. The Rams lost by one point.
The two would meet for their second game later that season and the Rams would win that battle. But Seattle won the war. They made it back to the playoffs. It was Seattle’s year to play spoiler. The Rams went on to go 9-7, missing the playoffs by one game.