The Los Angeles Rams went to Seattle as 5.5-point underdogs, but left the Northwest as the big winners, beating the Seahawks 30-13 in an opening season win that shocked most onlookers. Despite not having many familiar faces on offense or defense besides Matthew Stafford and Aaron Donald, that wasn’t an issue at all for Sean McVay’s team in yet another win over Pete Carroll’s Seahawks.
Stafford, apparently healthier than he’s been in over a year, finished 24-of-38 for 334 yards, helping the Rams convert on 11 of 16 third down attempts, which was one of the biggest stories of the game. His top two targets, Tutu Atwell and Puka Nacua, each had 119 receiving yards. It was a historic game for a fifth round rookie like Nacua, and almost double the previous career-high for Tutu.
Defensively, Raheem Morris’s side of the ball stifled Seahawks quarterback Geno Smith and held Seattle to a terrible third down conversion rate. Aaron Donald and Kobie Turner helped close out the game with each getting a sack on Smith late in the fourth quarter.
The Rams now start the season 1-0, setting up a showdown with the 1-0 San Francisco 49ers next week.
Geno Smith started the game with the ball and led Seattle on a field goal drive to give them the first lead of the game, 3-0. The Rams would respond with a pretty nice opening drive of their own to take a 7-3 lead.
A historic opening drive. pic.twitter.com/MnDUtRJLkl— Los Angeles Rams (@RamsNFL) September 10, 2023
Kyren Williams, not Cam Akers, would score the first touchdown of the season for Sean McVay and LA.
Seattle would respond with a DK Metcalf TD reception from Smith to retake the lead. Seattle would eventually take a 13-7 lead but the Rams offense continued to move the ball and eventually the Rams defense started making the type of stops that made you believe LA might win this game.
Tutu Atwell made some plays, Puka Nacua made some plays and LA’s QB1 looked as healthy as ever rushing for first downs while showing the arm talent that LA fans missed for most of last year.
The sophomore player, Kyren Williams would score two touchdowns on the ground and LA would take a 17-13 lead and in the fourth quarter Cam Akers would enter the end zone on a 4th and 1 call. It was a gutsy play call and the team delivered.
The defense would force Seattle to punt again and LA had a chance to really take control and put this game away. LA didn’t score a touchdown but they did chew some clock and kicked another field goal to take a fairly commanding 27-13 lead. Brett Maher closed out the game with another field goal to make it 30-13.
Puka Nacua played well above his draft status and well beyond his years. The fifth round rookie continued his impressive first year in the NFL and should complement Cooper Kupp well when the All-Pro receiver eventually returns. Especially if Atwell can keep up what he did in Week 1 too.
Kyren Williams had 15 carries for 52 yards, while Cam Akers had 22 carries for only 29 yards.
Almost everyone on the Rams outplayed expectations and L.A. gets off another win against the Seahawks. Can they make it two-for-two next week against the 49ers?