Here's a conversation starter: I like John Gruden. I like him a lot even. Does he say dumb things? Yes, absolutely. So does every other announcer. Does he have a passion for football? Oh my goodness yes. Does he have fun calling games? Seems to me he does. Those last two are huge for me. I enjoy sitting down on a Monday night and watching a game of football with my pal John. His excitement is infectious, and that's a hell of a lot more than you can say for most guys.
Play 1 - The Doug "Prematurely" Baldwin Screen. There's nothing particularly special about this play, outside of Doug Baldwin doing his thing. But Seattle was able to run this little wide receiver screen several times against the Rams with quite a bit of success. It went a long ways to neutralizing an under rated St Louis Rams pass rush.
Play 2 - A Flea Flicker Gone Wrong. Alan Branch does a nice job beating his man to get a free shot at Bradford, but what's really impressive to me on this play is KJ Wright. Wright reads the play as soon as Jackson begins to slow down and then uses his impressive acceleration to get to Sam Bradford.
Play 3 - KJ Wright vs Billy Bajema. The block by Bajema is poor and Wright makes him pay with a slick little inside move. Wright, again, reads the play well and shows off his acceleration.
Play 4 - KJ Wright and Richard Sherman. Wright should've caught this ball, but I don't care much about that. It's a tougher catch than it looks with the ball getting on him pretty quickly. There's a reason he doesn't play wide receiver. What I love about this play though is Richard Sherman. The taunting penalty that came later in the game was foolish, but Sherman's big personality and leadership seem to be a positive for the defense. He's quickly become one of my favorite Hawks.
Play 5 - KJ Wright vs Stephen Jackson. How many different ways can I say this? Wright reads plays really well and has a special ability to close on the ball. KJ is a beast.
Play 6 - Max Unger vs Gary Gibson. There's a lot going on in this play. The first thing that jumps out is a surprise appearance by 2009 Max Unger, who gets pushed back by Gibson forcing Lynch to cut back. McQuistan drives his man to the ground, Gallery doesn't quit on the play and block Quintin Mikell 5 yards past the line of scrimmage and Jeanpierre comes flying into the picture at the end of the play to kill a man. Marshawn Lynch also does some stuff along the way.
Play 7 - Rams Run Blocking Part 1. This was the second offensive play for the Rams and it was something Seattle would see several times throughout the game. It was mostly very effective. St Louis would let one of Seattle's defensive tackles come clean into the backfield, with the two guards moving out into the second level. The rest of the line would block down, sometimes a full back or tight end would pick up the tackle behind the line of scrimmage, and Jackson would hit a hole with what was usually pretty good downfield blocking.
Play 8 - Rams Run Blocking Part 2. Again, Branch is left unblocked as the guard doubles down on BrandonMebane. Unlike the previous play, the guards aren't able to get out to the second level and open a hole for Jackson. Mebane slids his double team to where the hole should be and Red Bryant stone walls the right guard. Hawthorne comes down to fill, and Jackson is forced to bounce outside before Branch can catch him. This works out, since Wright has been swallowed up by Harvey Dahl and Jackson is pretty good.
Play 9 - Rams Run Blocking Part 3. The Seahawks do a good job of stringing this run out and Sherman does a nice job of taking Harvey Dahl, the pulling guard and lead blocker, out of the play. Unfortunately the backside of the defense deteriorates, with Clemons getting cut block and Earl Thomas getting destroyed by Danario Alexander, leaving a gaping cut back lane for Jackson.
Play 10 - Rams Run Blocking Part 4. MNF had this annoying habit of showing plays right as the ball was snapped or a beat after, which makes putting together a descriptive gif difficult. I can't be sure, but it looks like the Tony Wragge lets Mebane go, to be picked up by the tight end. This is, if I have my jargon straight, the wham play that the Niners have made popular this season. It's the same idea as the first Ram Run Blocking gif above. Red Bryant mucks everything up however, as he stands up his double team preventing Jason Brown from peeling off and blocking the linebacker. Instead, Wragge blocks David Hawthorne leaving Kam Chancellor unaccounted for. Chancellor stops Jackson as Wright and Mebane converge to clean up the play.
Play 11 - Brandon Mebane vs Bryan Mattison. Mebane slides off a weak cut block and tackles Jackson, who has no where to go with Branch and Red driving the left side of his offensive line back three yards.
Play 12 - Brandon Browner In Press Coverage. At first I had this down as a double move that Browner played really well. Now, I'm leaning towards a really good press by Browner that delayed Gibson's route so long it looked like a double move. Whatever it was, Browner smothered it.
Play 13 - Richard Sherman vs a Double Move. This is a double move, and Sherman did whatever the opposite of smothering is. Sherman let this double move breathe.
Play 14 - Michael Robinson vs Quintin Mikell. Nice all around blocking here, with Gallery and Morrah getting down field, McQuistan handling his man and Robinson putting a big block on Quintin Mikell.
Play 15 - Lemuel Jeanpierre Fake Out. Nifty little fake there by Jeanpierre. I'm pretty sure Jeanpierre sucks, but it's not for lack of effort.
Play 16 - Chris Clemons and Anthony Hargrove. The Monday Night Football cameramen screw me again. Chris Clemons gets the sack here but Anthony Hargrove is right behind him. He gets great pressure up the middle, forcing an oh shit double team from the center and doesn't give Bradford any room to step up and avoid Clemons.
Play 17 - Brandon Browner and Anthony Hargrove. Hargrove again gets good pressure up the middle, using a spin move to force Bradford to move. Unfortunately Clemons isn't there to take advantage on this play and Browner gives up the first down.
Play 18 - Raheem Brock Sighting! Brock blows this play up, splitting the double team from Harvey Dahl and Billy Bajema to get into Jackson's running lane in the back field. Hargrove sheds Thomas Welch and cleans up with Hawthorne and Chancellor at the line of scrimmage.
Play 19 - Anthony Hargrove vs a Triple Team. This is mostly just an effort play, as Hargrove runs into a triple team and doesn't get much pressure up the middle. But he doesn't give up and is able to slip free of his blockers and get the sack on Bradford after he's flushed out of the pocket by Leroy Hill. All in all it was a pretty good day for Hargrove.
Play 20 - David Hawthorne vs Stephen Jackson. A lot goes right for Seattle on this direct snap to Jackson on the goal line. Alan Branch beats his man and is able to clog up Jackson's running lane. Mebane cut blocks two offensive linemen. And Hawthorne shoots past Adam Goldberg to fill the hole and tackle Jackson.
Play 21 - Earl Thomas is Invisible. You have to admit, it'd explain a lot.
Play 22 - No Seriously, You Guys Should Probably Try To Block Earl Thomas. Thomas does a great job getting low on Jackson here. He's not able to get him to the ground but Jackson's only option at that point to to leap over the pile to get back to the line of scrimmage.
Play 23 - Chris Clemons vs Lance Kendricks. Another great example of Clemons' abilities in the run game. Stephen Jackson is not an easy person to tackle, but Clemons has little trouble getting an arm on him and then wrapping him up.
Play 24 - Kam Chancellor vs Sam Bradford. Excellent job by Chancellor reading Bradford and jumping the short route.
Play 25 - David Hawthorne vs the Turf. Thank god for Kam Chancellor. Hawthorne has a chance to make a play in the back field but faceplants instead, leaving Chancellor as the only thing between Stephen Jackson and the first down.
Play 26 - Brandon Browner vs Brandon Lloyd. Is this good corner back play? I honestly don't know. He doesn't get his head turned around but he's able to play the ball anyways, batting it away from Lloyd without getting grabby with him and drawing a penalty. It was a nice play, but I'd much rather see him turn his head in the future.