Let's start by saying, I feel like the pot calling the kettle black here, entering a behind the numbers post focused on Seattle's poor passing game and the matchup against the Rams backfield. I suppose Seattle's coaches players welcome the opportunity to get back on track, or at least think they do. And right now, it's hard to give the Rams defensive backfield the benefit here after the last two games.
All that aside, the Seahawks passing game has been struggling. Starting QB Matt Hasslebeck, dealing with some wear and tear issues himself, has a completion percentage of just 45.5%, a QB rating of 48.6 having thrown for 379 yards, 1 TD and 3 INTs. Overall the passing game is averaging just 174.5 yard per game.
(The Rams, by comparison, are averaging 131+ yards per game, and starting QB Marc Bulger has completed 53.8% of his passes, has a QB rating of 73.6 while throwing for 335 yards, 1 TD and 1 INT.)
The Rams pass defense, as you might have suspected, has allowed 6 TDs, no INTs, and an average of 327.5 yards passing per game. Whew. Hard to type that.
But if ever there were a chance to pull it together, put some lipstick on this pig, it's versus Seattle who's signed whatever receiver they can find off the street to fill in for their injured starters and has a starting QB struggling. Note to Seattle fans: it's called decline, welcome.
This week would be a good time for the defensive backs to regain some of their confidence, which has obviously spiraled down the tubes in the wake of the opener against Philly. In a feature on the Rams official site, Haslett takes the blame for his d-backs poor play, having this to say:
The effort was there but the attention detail hasn’t been there in two weeks so that’s something I will take the blame on that and we will get it right.
He also notes in the article time in camp lost to injury by key members of the backfield, Fakhir Brown and OJ Atogwe combined with the poor play forcing the Rams to shift players around into a confusing array of combinations. Seattle lacks a big play maker like Plaxico Burress, but they do have their fair share of Hank Basketts.
Last season, Atogwe had an INT and 2 passes defended against the Seahawks. Ron Bartell, right now the Rams best CB, also had an INT and 2 PD against Seattle last season.
No word on whether or not the Rams backfield lineup will change. One suggestion I'd make is leaving Tye HIll off the starting 11. His confidence looks shot. Run him out there in situations and let him build it back up. I still maintain what I said yesterday about using Chris Chamberlain in coverage, even at safety. With some adjustments and mistake free play, the Rams pass defense might have shot to erase the bad memories they've created this season, redemption. It's definitely a matchup to watch...even if you have to peer through the cracks between your fingers with your hand over your eyes.