LOS ANGELES—The Seahawks lost on the road for the first time this season as the Rams put together an impressive performance on offense and defense on their way to a 28-12 win. The loss drops the Seahawks to 10-3, a game behind the 49ers in the NFC West, and keeps alive L.A.'s playoff hopes as the Rams improved to 8-5.
Here are five rapid reactions to Sunday's loss:
1. The defense had a tough time stopping Jared Goff and the Rams offense.
Seattle's defense has done a lot of things very well over the past month, playing a huge role in wins over the 49ers, Eagles and Vikings. On Sunday, however, Seattle had a hard time stopping the Rams for most of the game.
Rams quarterback Jared Goff led touchdown drives of 75, 76 and 82 yards in the first half, with the Rams punting only once in the half, and the Rams gained 240 yards and picked up 15 first downs in the half.
The Seahawks defense turned things around considerably in the third quarter, getting two interceptions from Quandre Diggs, one of which was returned for a touchdown, a drive that ended on a blocked field goal by Rasheem Green, and a three-and-out. But the Goff and Rams bounced back from those third-quarter struggles by opening the fourth-quarter with a seven-play, 95-yard touchdown drive that made it 28-9.
2. The offense also had a hard time.
The Rams didn't just have a big day on offense, their defense was also a handful in this game. Chris Carson ran well, but with the Seahawks trailing most of the game, they had only 16 attempts by running backs. With the Seahawks having to be more one-dimensional than they'd have liked, the Rams sacked Russell Wilson five times, hit him 10 times, and just made things difficult throughout the night on Seattle's offense.
And as well as the Rams played, the Seahawks also compounded the issues with their own mistakes, including penalties, dropped passes on throws that should have converted four-and-short early in the game and third down later in the first half, and a fumbled handoff exchange that, while recovered by Wilson, all but killed a possession before it got going. .
The end result was the Seahawks' first game without an offensive touchdown since a 2017 season-opening loss in Green Bay.
"Really, there was two crucial third downs when we really had, or third down and a fourth down when we had our chances, and we just need to keep moving and we just didn't convert and the ball got away from us," Seahawks coach Pete Carroll said. "In a game where they were really moving it, we had to stay with them, and we just didn't convert like we needed to keep the ball in our hands and keep the next sequence and series available for us."
3. Quandre Diggs has been one heck of an addition.
The Seahawks had to wait a bit to see what they had in midseason trade acquisition Quandre Diggs due to a hamstring injury that occurred during his time in Detroit. But ever since Diggs took over as Seattle's starting free safety, he has been a difference maker on the back end of the defense.
That was never more obvious than on Sunday night when Diggs intercepted an errant pass and returned it 55 yards for the Seahawks' first touchdown of the night, then followed that up with another interception on the Rams' next possession.
Through four games with the Seahawks Diggs now has three interceptions, one forced fumble and a fumble recovery, as well as a handful of massive hits. It's looking more and more like the Seahawks got a steal when they acquired Diggs, as well as a seventh-round pick, for a fifth-rounder.
Also worth mentioning when talking about Diggs' performance is that both interceptions came on plays on which Shaquem Griffin provided pressure, including a quarterback hit by Griffin on the pick-six.
"He had a chance to make a big play and he just made it look like it was as easy as could be," Carroll said. "And it's not the first time he's done that. We have been telling you about his savvy, his instincts and how natural a player he is. I thought that was obvious there. And also, the other pick was a really good one too."
4. Another 1,000-yard season for Chris Carson.
While the Seahawks offense struggled to get going for much of Sunday's game, running back Chris Carson did hit a significant milestone in the loss. With 76 yards on 15 carries, Carson is now up to 1,057 this season. Carson, who rushed for 1,151 yards last season, is the sixth player in franchise history to have back-to-back 1,000-yard rushing seasons, and the first since Marshawn Lynch did it in four straight seasons from 2011-2014.
"He ran really hard tonight and did a great job -- I don't know what he gained tonight -- but congratulations to him, the offensive line, and those guys for getting that done, that's a big accomplishment." Carroll said.
5. Michael Dickson continues to play very well.
Dickson, Seattle's second-year punter, has played very well of late, with eight of his last nine punts being downed inside the 20 coming into the game, and on Sunday he was a bright spot on an otherwise rough night for the Seahawks.
Dickson punted five times, averaging 46 yards per punt, with three of those pinning the Rams inside the 20, and combined with really strong coverage, limiting the Rams to minus-1 return yards.