Up 40-7, the Los Angeles Rams opted to pull Jared Goff from almost all of the final quarter of a blowout win over the Seattle Seahawks. Sean Mannion threw a couple of passes but mostly we saw some handoffs and the usual “kill the clock” stuff often prevalent in garbage time.
You know who was still in the game for three of Seattle’s four 4th quarter possessions?
That would be Russell Wilson, sacked seven times, including three by Aaron Donald, hurried and scrambling for his life on countless other occasions. Seattle’s franchise quarterback and once-considered an MVP candidate before these last two performances flushed that down the toilet once and for all.
The three drives futilely led by Wilson, who was poor and inaccurate even when he had time, ended in two punts and an intentional grounding for a safety, making up the 42-7 scoreline. Austin Davis came in for the game’s final possession to run the clock out.
Seattle finished with 71 net yards passing, by the way.
This was Wilson’s response to staying in even though it was a blowout.
Russell Wilson: “The game got out of hand very quickly … That’s rare.” He defended playing into 4th quarter searching for comeback: “I always want to keep playing. It’s just the mentality, that’s the competitor in me.” Emphasizes there's "no panic" in Seahawks locker room.— Shawn Pogatchnik (@ShawnPogatchnik) December 18, 2017
I expect that from Wilson, and I imagine any other competitive quarterback hates getting pulled for the backup because they’re on the wrong end of an ass-kicking.
We’ve seen Wilson’s heroics in the 4th quarter, but since you can apparently only score a maximum of eight points per drive, this one was an impossibility. Pete Carroll absolutely should not have risked even more (and unnecessary) punishment to the one guy this team cannot afford to lose. As many of you saw, Wilson was still being pressured even in garbage time, but thankfully the sacks stopped in the 3rd quarter.
This is only the second time we’ve seen Seattle have zero chance of victory in the 4th quarter. The other time was 38-10 last year against the Green Bay Packers, back when Wilson was not 100% really at any point in the season. On a cold December day, Wilson wasn’t replaced by Trevone Boykin until after the two-minute warning.
There’s a difference between “always compete” and plain stupidity. It’s been a year filled with high-profile injuries to quarterbacks, and yes, they can happen on any play, but imagine the reaction among Seahawks fans right now if Wilson had gotten hurt in stat-padding time.
Know when the game is up. Protect your $80 million man. Keeping Wilson out there late in the game wasn’t justifiable in the slightest, and now Carroll has done it twice.