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St. Louis Rams score 19 special teams points in win vs. Seattle Seahawks

Greg Zuerlein kicks four field goals and Johnny Hekker throws the game's only touchdown pass. It was that kind of game for the St. Louis Rams' offense.

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Sam Bradford so-so in Week 4 after polarized start

Sam Bradford wasn't great against the Seattle Seahawks, but he could have been much worse.


Daryl Richardson falls flat against the Seahawks

Daryl Richardson looks to have ousted Isaiah Pead, but the St. Louis Rams are still stuck on Steven Jackson.


Rams Real Talk: Week 4

Shirtless Twitter profile pics. Johnny Cueto. A Zexy leg. And the rest of St. Louis Rams Real Talk: Week 4.


Steven Jackson still isn't right

Steven Jackson's struggles continue, befuddling St. Louis Rams fans and fantasy football owners.


Greg Zuerlein's officially a Big Deal

Greg Zuerlein has been Missouri's favorite St. Louis Rams rookie since the preseason, but Sunday was his national coming-out party.


Danny Amendola is every Ram's favorite receiver

Danny Amendola's touchdown pass didn't come from Sam Bradford, but it still counted.


Rams top Seahawks, 19-13

The St. Louis Rams defeated the Seattle Seahawks on Sunday, winning by a final score of 19-13.

The Rams used a strong second quarter to take control, scoring 10 unanswered points. Both teams traded multiple field goals in the second half, but Seattle was unable to find the endzone in the game's final minutes. Russell Wilson was picked off by cornerback Bradley Fletcher, sealing Seattle's fate.

The Rams improved to 2-2 on the season, while the Seahawks fell to 2-2.

Fantasy studs/duds

Seattle running back Marshawn Lynch went full beast mode for the Seahawks, accumulating 155 total yards and a touchdown. St. Louis wide receiver Danny Amendola continued his hot start to the season, picking up 55 yards and a touchdown of his own.

Russell Wilson, on the other hand, struggled big time. He threw three interceptions to go along with a modest 160 passing yards.

Touchdown, punter

The Rams used a bit of trickery to score a second-quarter touchdown, using a fake field goal from punter Johnny Hekker to hit Danny Amendola in the back of the endzone. See the play for yourself.



Did they cover?

The Seahawks entered the game as the favorites on the road, but failed to cover the spread after falling to the Rams. They were anywhere between one and three point favorites.

What's next?

The Rams will next take on the upstart Arizona Cardinals on Thursday, Oct. 4. The Seahawks will face off against The Carolina Panthers in Carolina.


Steven Jackson limited again in Rams win

Sunday afternoon St. Louis Rams took the ball at midfield with minutes to go in the fourth quarter and the chance to close the Seattle Seahawks out for good, and after a heroic 10-yard rush up the gut it looked like Steven Jackson would finally be able to put the Rams on his back and end the game. Unfortunately, it didn't happen: the Seahawks brought everyone in on third-and-one, and he was stopped behind the line to force a punt. The Rams won anyway, their defense forcing a third Russell Wilson interception, but the near-miss was characteristic of Jackson's game—and his season so far.

Jackson finished the afternoon with 18 rushes for 55 yards and 12 yards on a reception at the line of scrimmage, and it was feast or famine all day—he began the day with rushes of one, one, 23, and four yards, and he ended it with rushes of one, minus-one, 10, and minus-two. He also had a touchdown taken away on a holding penalty just before the Rams' perfect fake field goal got the offense, such as it was, its only points of the night.

The Rams continue to give Steven Jackson the bulk of the carries, and that looks unlikely to change any time soon; Daryl Richardson had six for 16, and Isaiah Pead wasn't even active. He'll have every chance to regain his old form, but so far he's proven unable to do it.


Russell Wilson's interception seals Rams win

With a minute to go, down by a score of 19-13, the Seattle Seahawks looked like they'd be able to ride Marshawn Lynch to a last-minute touchdown and a major win against NFC West rivals the St. Louis Rams. Instead, with a minute left, Russell Wilson threw his third interception of the afternoon when his receiver slipped, leaving Bradley Fletcher all alone with the ball and the Rams to their second victory.

Wilson got off to a strong start, but the Rams' turnover-happy secondary got to the Seahawks' game-managing rookie after the first quarter and forced three unconventional interceptions—not just the tripping receiver but also Trumaine Johnson's first career interception, which was plucked right off the receiver he was hitting's arm, and a Rocky McIntosh interception that came when Janoris Jenkins treated Wilson's arm like a mailbox flag and forced an awkward lob-to-nobody on a blitz.

The Rams' offense continues to struggle, but so long as their secondary keeps feeding Greg Zuerlein extra chances they'll be able to put points on the board. For an entire game's worth of updates, analysis, and animated GIFs, check out our Rams vs. Seahawks storystream.


Sam Bradford has to find the end zone

Sam Bradford had one of the best games of his St. Louis Rams career in Week 2, and one of the worst in Week 3. In Week 4 he's been—well, somewhere in the middle, there. With six minutes to go in the fourth Bradford is 16-for-30 with 221 yards and an interception borne of a miscommunication with Brandon Gibson. He's gotten the Rams into field goal territory five teams—but that's admittedly not very difficult when your kicker is Greg Zuerlein. Two red-zone shots have ended with a 24-yard field goal and the difference-maker so far, a fake field goal in which punter Johnny Hekker found Bradford's favorite target, Danny Amendola, for a touchdown. The score: 19-13. The defense: Struggling to contain Marshawn Lynch.

The Rams have to get back into the end zone, and Sam Bradford has to take them there. Steven Jackson has been solid but limited; Daryl Richardson hasn't gotten consistent yardage as the change-of-pace back. The Rams' young receivers, meanwhile, are proving they can make an impact—Chris Givens has a 52-yard reception, and Lance Kendricks, Austin Pettis, and even Brian Quick have all come up big in limited time.

Sam Bradford has the options. Compared to Aaron Rodgers, at least, he has the time. Now he needs to put a drive together to put the Seahawks away for good.


Danny Amendola's fantasy day made by a punter

St. Louis Rams wide receiver Danny Amendola is a fantasy football darling—at least in points-per-reception leagues—thanks to his relationship with quarterback Sam Bradford. Sunday, against the Seattle Seahawks, Amendola has just three receptions from his quarterback as Bradford struggles—luckily, he has a fourth from punter Johnny Hekker, who threw him a two-yard touchdown pass on a perfect fake field goal (GIF.)

Overall it's not one of his best fantasy performances—through three quarters he has four receptions for 25 yards and a touchdown, along with a six-yard end-around—but for once, at least, Amendola proved that he's something more than a manifestation of Sam Bradford's insecurities and Pat Shurmur's 2010 offensive scheme. He's also a manifestation of Johnny Hekker's insecurities, and Brian Schottenheimer's 2012 offensive scheme.

In the fourth quarter the Rams hold a narrow lead over the Seahawks, and as their defense struggles to contain Marshawn Lynch I'd expect to see Bradford hewing closely to Amendola and Steven Jackson as they try to eat clock and get some more points on the board. And if Hekker lines up under center, you'll know where he's going.


Marshawn Lynch is all the Seahawks have going

Through most of three quarters, the Seattle Seahawks' offense has been literally half Marshawn Lynch, and half every other skill player on the team. With Russell Wilson, 12-for-17 with 126 yards and two interceptions, a non-factor, Lynch has carried the ball 13 times for 75 yards and the Seahawks' lone touchdown—and, while he's at it, caught two balls for 21 yards. This is actually fewer times than Lynch usually carries the ball, but that's only because the Seahawks have spent so much time on defense; his 15 touches are actually just four touches fewer than every other wide receiver, running back, and tight end has managed on the Seahawks so far.

The St. Louis Rams know he's coming, but they can't really stop him; as brilliant as their pass defense has been so far, they've struggled against the run all year, whether it's backups like Kevin Smith and Michael Bush or shockingly overused stars like Marshawn Lynch.

For more fantasy football updates, injury alerts, and well-placed animated gifs, stay tuned to our Rams-Seahawks storystream, where we're liveblogging all the happenings and non-happenings of this big NFC West matchup.


Russell Wilson intercepted again off Jenkins blitz

The St. Louis Rams have put incredible pressure on Russell Wilson since the Seattle Seahawks' rookie quarterback got off to a solid start. In the third quarter, after a 69-yard kick return put the Seahawks deep into Rams territory, rookie cornerback Janoris Jenkins blitzed Wilson and grabbed his arm, leaving linebacker Rocky McIntosh in position to catch the resulting lob for the Rams' second interception of the afternoon.

Wilson was 8-for-10 to start the game, with 85 yards, but he's thrown two quick interceptions since—one on a great physical play by rookie Trumaine Johnson, and another forced by Jenkins's pressure as the offensive line collapsed around him. Wilson's probably played a little better than his numbers look so far, but since that first quarter he's been unable to get the Seahawks downfield, with Marshawn Lynch—who has 11 carries for 64 yards and a touchdown—once again their only reliable offensive weapon.

Partway through the third quarter, the Rams are holding onto a 16-7 lead against their NFC West rivals, on the strength of this wild Danny Amendola fake field goal touchdown and three increasingly long field goals from wunderkind Greg Zuerlein.


Rams' fake field goal finds Danny Amendola (video)

Danny Amendola, as it turns out, is everybody's favorite St. Louis Rams wide receiver—even punter Johnny Hekker. Near the goal line, and appearing to go for the easy points, Jeff Fisher and the Rams called for a fake field goal, and Hekker found a wide-open Danny Amendola on the sidelines. The result: A two-yard reception and an easy touchdown. The Rams now have their first lead of the afternoon, going up 10-7 inside the two-minute warning of their wild game vs. the Seattle Seahawks.

The Rams' rookie punter has looked excellent doing his usual work, and while I'm not sure he should consider a future career as a backup quarterback, he proved that anybody, given an oncoming rush and a nervous desire to find their slot-receiver, can throw the ball to Danny Amendola.

For more updates on the St. Louis Rams' NFC West matchup with the Seattle Seahawks—score alerts, injury updates, fantasy football notes and nervousness—stick to our Rams vs. Seahawks liveblog, which we'll be updating all day.


Brian Quick comes alive (a little!)

The St. Louis Rams finally found second-round wide receiver Brian Quick Sunday vs. the Seattle Seahawks, with Sam Bradford firing a bullet up the middle on third-and-long to hit Quick on the numbers for a 19-yard-gain that left them 10 yards from the end zone. Quick, who was inactive two weeks out of three to start his career and was targeted just once in his appearance, had become a concern among Rams fans who are maybe too acutely aware of Mardy Gilyard syndrome.

And now, after fellow rookie wide receiver Chris Givens picked up 52 yards on exactly the deep route the Rams drafted him for, the Rams' would-be-No.-1-of-the-future has a key reception of his own. Brian Quick may have a way to go before he fulfills all that raw-talent-y potential, but it won't take nearly all of that to climb up the Rams' depth chart; if he can just be, you know, occasionally competent, we'll be seeing a lot more of him.

Through most of the first half Bradford's targeted five different receivers, getting Brandon Gibson and Danny Amendola twice and going to Givens, Quick, and Austin Pettis once each. For more score updates, injury alerts, and fantasy notes, stay tuned to our liveblogged Rams-Seahawks storystream.


Trumaine Johnson

St. Louis Rams rookie DB Trumaine Johnson got on the board with his first career interception Sunday, putting a hit on Doug Baldwin and simultaneously swiping the ball off the receiver's back arm. The interception—the Rams' sixth so far this season, and the second from their rookie secondary members—put the Rams back on the prowl at midfield, and marked Russell Wilson's first mistake so far. (The Seahawks rookie is now 8-for-10 with 85 yards and an interception.)

Johnson was part of Jeff Fisher's ambitious plan to remake the Rams' beleaguered secondary, which through a combination of injuries and ineffectiveness was one of the worst parts of perhaps the worst team in football. Janoris Jenkins, their second-round cornerback, picked off Matthew Stafford in Week 1; Cortland Finnegan, their big free-agent splash, has an interception in each of the Rams' first three weeks.

And now Trumaine Johnson, through a strange, physical, effective play, has an interception of his own. For more Rams vs. Seahawks score updates, injury alerts, and fantasy news, stay tuned to our Rams-Seahawks storystream, where we're just hoping Sam Bradford doesn't get himself killed holding onto the ball. (He was watching Aaron Rodgers on Monday, right?)


Marshawn Lynch puts the Seahawks up a touchdown

Marshawn Lynch is the Seattle Seahawks offense. The Seahawks are up 7-3 on the St. Louis Rams Sunday, less than halfway through Week 4. Therefore: Marshawn Lynch has scored a touchdown. He's got seven carries (to Russell Wilson's eight throws) for 35 yards and the touchdown, putting himself on pace for his usual fantasy football game of 50 carries, 85 yards, and two touchdowns.

Wilson's actually having a nice game, 7-for-8 with 78 yards so far, which means the Seahawks could open their offense up if they want to. But the Rams' secondary and pass rush is much better regarded than their run defense, and the Seahawks clearly want to see whether Marshawn Lynch knows who Larry Johnson is, so it probably won't happen.

Meanwhile: Steven Jackson has six carries for 33 yards for the Rams, though 23 of those came on one carry. For more St. Louis Rams vs. Seattle Seahawks score updates, fantasy notes, and injury alerts, stay tuned to our Rams vs. Seahawks storystream, where we're blogging live all day. Everyone gets a prize when Marshawn Lynch gets over 100 carries!


Sam Bradford finds Chris Givens deep, finally

The St. Louis Rams might not know what to do with Brian Quick, but the other guy they drafted for Sam Bradford, Chris Givens, has A Very Particular Set of Skills: He can run really fast downfield, and Sam Bradford can throw him the ball. After a few misses early in the season, Bradford and Givens finally connected downfield vs. the Seattle Seahawks, for a 52-yard bomb that put them deep into Seattle territory to end the first quarter.

Unfortunately: Sam Bradford threw an interception almost immediately afterward. Brandon Gibson, who had a disastrous performance against the Chicago Bears in Week 3, either wasn't where he was supposed to be or wasn't where Sam Bradford thought he was; a Seattle Seahawks defender was, which ended an exciting drive before it could put the Rams in the end zone for their first touchdown.

For more Rams-Seahawks score updates, injury alerts, and fantasy football crap, stay tuned to our St. Louis Rams Week 4 storystream, where we're blogging live throughout the game. Hopefully we'll see more Chris Givens and less Brandon Gibson.


Greg Zuerlein cannot be contained

At some point Greg Zuerlein will have to miss a field goal, just like at some point the sun will have to expand and swallow our deserted, desiccated home planet. In the meantime, the St. Louis Rams rookie is comically good at kicking footballs. In the first quarter of Week 4's Rams vs. Seahawks showdown, Zuerlein kicked a 58-yard field goal to put the Rams on the board. They're down 7-3, but at least the Seahawks understand, now, that the Rams' mediocre offense will only have to get within, say, 60 yards of those uprights to score some points.

Zuerlein has attempted six field goals from at least 40 yards out in his four-game career, and he's made all of them. He's got a huge leg, and as skeptical as most Rams fans were about drafting a kicker, Greg the Leg (or Young GZ, if you like your nicknames a little more street) has won most of St. Louis over with his astounding range and accuracy.

He's a kicker. He's the Rams' most exciting young player. That might be a bad thing, but at this point the Edward Jones Dome isn't going to take anything for granted, so long as it's exciting.


Isaiah Pead sits as Steven Jackson plays

The Seattle Seahawks will head into their game at the St. Louis Rams with seven players inactive, the same number of players who were inactive heading into their controversial victory over the Green Bay Packers on Monday Night Football during Week 3.

The Seahawks will be without the services of defensive tackle Alan Branch, cornerback Danny Gorrer, strong safety Winston Guy, defensive tackle Jaye Howard, wide receiver Charly Martin, cornerback Byron Maxwell and guard John Moffitt.

The Rams will have seven inactive players as well. Not playing for the Rams are defensive tackles Matt Conrath and Jermelle Cudjo, quarterback Austin Davis, running back Isaiah Pead, offensive tackle Rodger Saffold and wide receiver Steve Smith.

The Seahawks welcome back wide receiver Doug Baldwin to the offense after he was inactive last week, and the Rams will have the services of running back Steven Jackson, who is battling a groin injury.

The Seahawks are on a two-game winning streak and are 2-1 on the season. The Rams are 1-2 and are coming off a loss.

This post originally appeared on


Rams running back will play on Sunday

St. Louis Rams running back Steven Jackson will play on Sunday against the Seattle Seahawks, according to ESPN's Adam Schefter:

Jackson has been hampered all season by a groin injury. In St. Louis' two losses this season, Jackson has just 32 carries for 82 yards. In the Rams lone win of the year, against the Washington Redskins, Jackson rushed 9 times for 58 yards. For the year, he has 41 carries for 140 yards, and has yet to score a touchdown.

Daryl Richardson should still see some carries for St. Louis in the backfield, even with Jackson going on Sunday. Richardson has 119 yards rushing this season on 21 carries, but he too has yet to score a rushing touchdown.

Kickoff on Sunday between Seattle and St. Louis is scheduled for 1:00 p.m. ET from the Edwards Jones Dome.


Daryl Richardson's a fantasy reach (for now)

Daryl Richardson's fantasy football prospects weren't the sort of thing I was expecting to cover going into the St. Louis Rams' 2012 season, not even after he blew past Isaiah Pead on the Rams' depth chart. Frantic Steven Jackson owners, though, have officially made it an issue. He's crept up from being not owned at all to being owned in 5.5 percent of ESPN leagues, and if Jackson struggles again vs. the Seattle Seahawks there could be a genuine Daryl Richardson bubble on the way.

Which means I have to say: No, you probably don't have to pick up Daryl Richardson yet, and yes, it would probably be a reach. Not only is Richardson unlikely to crest 10 carries without a legitimate Steven Jackson injury, he also has his own depth chart problem lurking just behind him, the Daryl Richardson to his own Steven Jackson—Isaiah Pead, who doesn't have a foothold on the offense yet but will be given every opportunity to take one if Jackson is indisposed.

Keep an eye on him, sure. Revel in the way he runs directly at holes like he doesn't even realize he's a seventh-round draft pick. But adding him to your fantasy football team? He's got a Hall of Famer and a guy the Rams reached for in the second round to vanquish before you even think about that.


Russell Wilson shouldn't test Cortland Finnegan

Russell Wilson earned the Seattle Seahawks' starting quarterback job as a rookie with no little fanfare, but through four weeks he's had the unfortunate distinction of being most notable for throwing the Hail Mary pseudo-touchdown that ended the replacement referees' reign. After getting just 20 and 21 pass attempts in his last two games, it's clear that the Seahawks plan on easing Wilson into the offense slowly—by means of running Marshawn Lynch into the ground—and that's probably for the best. Because no matter how much has gone wrong in the St. Louis Rams' 1-2 start to the season, their acquisition of Cortland Finnegan has gone exactly right.

Already their free-agent cornerback has three interceptions this season, including a Pick-6, but he's led, more generally, a renaissance of the Rams' moribund secondary. Rookie Janoris Jenkins picked off Matthew Stafford to begin the season, and Finnegan's most-hated-man-in-football routine literally saved the Rams' win vs. the Redskins, when it drove them to a fatal personal foul.

Through three weeks Rams opponents have thrown the ball 31, 29, and 48 times—expect the Seahawks to end up somewhere south of that total. Russell Wilson or no Russell Wilson, it's probably for the best—the Rams' yards allowed per pass attempt, 6.4, is 17th in football, but their yards allowed per carry, at 4.5, is 25th.


The Seahawks are favored over the Rams Sunday

They're three point favorites, because Russell Wilson might score three points.


Marshawn Lynch is being run into the ground

From SB Nation Seattle, a surprising stat about Marshawn Lynch, whom I'll always remember as an intermittently effective malcontent in Buffalo: Since Week 9 of 2011, admittedly an arbitrary endpoint, Marshawn Lynch has 1246 rushing yards, more than anybody else in the NFL. What else he has: 283 carries in 12 games, a Larry Johnsonian pace of 377 over 16 games. (It's even higher in 2012 so far.) Through sheer volume, Marshawn Lynch has turned into a fantasy football star. But will that volume also be the thing that ends his tenure as chief proponent of Beast Mode?

Well, yes, probably, which is just a weird fact about being a durable, carry-hoovering running back: Your primary skill is basically delaying breakdown longer than other people could. Lynch, though, has never topped 285 carries in a season; an incredible 211 of those 285 he had last year came over the season's last nine weeks.

At 26, Lynch isn't near the running back cliff yet, but the way the Seahawks are riding him I'd be surprised if he managed an age-28 season anything like, say, Steven Jackson's in 2011. If you own Lynch this year—well, enjoy the ride. That Larry Johnson year, after all, was pretty incredible in the moment. But if it comes time to draft him again next year, at this rate, I'd probably hold off.


Will Seattle's pass rush have Bradford's number?

The Seattle Seahawks' defense is 24th in the NFL in pass attempts allowed. They're 10th in passing yards allowed. That mix, coming as it does after the Seahawks have stifled the likes of Tony Romo and Aaron Rodgers in back-to-back weeks, is why the St. Louis Rams in general and Sam Bradford in particular could find the sledding rough when the NFC West rivals meet at the Edward Jones Dome Sunday. With Steven Jackson limited by injury, the Rams' running game is unlikely to keep the Seahawks particularly honest on the ground, so it'll be up to Bradford to—you know, to outperform Tony Romo and Aaron Rodgers.

The good news: Chris Clemons, who almost single-handedly stopped Rodgers, is unlikely to pick up four sacks for the second week in a row, even against the St. Louis Rams' offensive-line-by-default. The Seahawks are built for the pass rush, but that doesn't mean they can't be stopped; the eight times they clocked Rodgers were four times as many as they managed over the season's first two games.

But somebody's going to have to get open, and he'll have to get open fast—expect a lot of short looks at Danny Amendola, Steven Jackson, and Lance Kendricks. Or expect a lot of sacks.


Rams vs. Seahawks game day details

The St. Louis Rams are hosting the Seattle Seahawks, and will be looking for their second win of the season.


Steven Jackson expectations slide as Sunday looms

Steven Jackson might play, but that's not the end of the Week 4 injury conversation.


Steven Jackson is questionable with groin injury

St. Louis Rams starting running back Steven Jackson is listed as questionable for Sunday's game against the Seattle Seahawks due to a groin injury.


Marshawn Lynch gets stellar fantasy press vs. Rams

You and I might be worried about Marshawn Lynch's production against a St. Louis Rams run defense that's already made worldbeaters out of Kevin Smith and Michael Bush, but for Beast Mode's fantasy football owners things are looking up in Week 4. Coming off a not-especially-efficient 25-carry, 98-yard performance against the Green Bay Packers he'll face a Rams team that's allowed an average of 4.5 yards per carry—25th in the NFL—and five rushing touchdowns in three games.

The wild card: 2012 NFL Draft first-rounder Michael Brockers, who could be available after making his return to the practice field this week. Brockers is the big, run-stuffing DT the Rams have lacked all year, and if his limited preseason performance was enough to get him playing better than, say, 25th in the NFL, he could leap past fellow picks Brian Quick and Isaiah Pead on his way to a crucial role on this year's Rams. (Lynch's 384-carry pace should also be a concern, though probably not in Week 4.)

But a potentially limited Brockers isn't nearly enough to keep Marshawn Lynch fans away. Walter Football ranks him

ninth this week, just behind Jamaal Charles.


Russell Wilson looks to improve versus Rams

Following Monday night's contentious victory, Russell Wilson will look to improve statistically this Sunday as his Seattle Seahawks take on the St. Louis Rams.

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