If you're going to give the ball away, it's better to give it away with guts I guess. The play calling on the first offensive series was bold. It negated Seattle's only turnover, but did so assuredly.
That Seattle only forced one turnover, a special teams turnover no less, underscores how well the defense played. Playing ahead for most of the game, and forcing ten third and long (often very long) plays by St. Louis, Seattle's defense did not benefit from a turnover. Yet it still limited the Rams to 244 net yards in 10 drives*. It did it like this.
- Seattle matched a 4-3 under against the Rams two wide "I". Curry was the under linebacker, and Seattle used him as an extra linemen. He attacked Alex Barron, matching Patrick Kerney on left guard Jacob Bell, Brandon Mebane on center Jason Brown and so on down the line. Seattle's five stacked the Rams five and Lofa Tatupu shot the right "A" gap and wrapped Steven Jackson from behind for a tackle awarded to Cory Redding.
- The Rams put two tackles right and tight end Randy McMichael outside left guard Bell. Marc Bulger ran a play-action, naked-boot leg right and zinged a pass to a well covered Laurent Robinson. Josh Wilson tipped it away.
- St. Louis went from an unbalanced line to an unbalanced formation. It aligned two wide receivers and a tight end right, a single receiver left and Jackson the set back. Seattle showed off its first iteration of a pass rush line, Darryl Tapp, Redding, Craig Terrill and Kerney defensive right to left. Tatupu and Hill challenged the "A" gaps. Nick coverage. The Rams motion Avery in tight, creating a pseudo-bunch off right tackle. Kerney exploits the bunch to rush into the backfield untouched, threading between McMichael and Keneen Burton past Smith and at Bulger. The linebackers release into hook zones. Jackson picks up Kerney. Bulger takes a seven step drop, but can barely set before Tapp rips past Barron and hits Bulger as he releases. Hill tackles Avery well short of the first.
*Excluding fumble recovery drive and the one play, three yard drive to end the half.