The Seahawks have an opportunity this afternoon to earn their first back-to-back win of the season as well as a second victory on the road to go along with their win against the Giants back in week five.
The Rams are struggling this year. On paper, they're half of a good team; St. Louis is awful when it comes to passing the ball (27th in passing yards per attempt, 28th in completion percentage, 32nd in sacks allowed) and defending against the run (29th in rushing yards allowed per attempt, 32nd in rushing yards allowed per game), but reasonably okay at running the ball (12th in rushing yards per attempt, 16th in rushing yards per game) and defending against the pass (16th in passing yards allowed per attempt, 16th in sacks, 12th in passing yards allowed per game).
That last one is suprising at first glance, especially considering that Rams have already had to put six cornerbacks on injured reserve this season, but the above numbers are also consistent with a team that's outscored early and often -- their opponents run up the score, then ease off on the pass so they can grind out the rest of the clock with their ground game. Their scoring stats back up that conclusion: their defense is 25th in TDs allowed per passing attempt and tied for 11th with seven other teams in rushing TDs allowed, while their offense is 32nd in TDs scored per passing attempt and tied for 24th with six other teams for rushing TDs scored.
In short, this is a prime opportunity for the Seahawks' two new starting offensive linemen, RG Paul McQuistan and RT Breno Giacomini, to get some in-game experience working alongside the rest of the o-line. With a good showing against St. Louis, o-line coach Tom Cable will have something positive to build on going into the upcoming stretch of three home games in a row (versus the Redskins, Eagles, and a rematch with the Rams). After the endless series of almost-but-not-quite finishes that plagued the Seahawks through their first eight games, here's hoping for a much stronger showing to kick off the second half of the season.
On another note, the television stations here in Eugene have apparently decided not to broadcast the Seahawks-Rams game, so I may end up being largely absent from the game thread today. Instead, I'll probably end up having to choose between watching the Chargers versus the Bears or the Cardinals versus the 49ers while I sulk and wait for the game I really wanted to watch to become available on NFL Rewind. (I miss you, KING 5.)