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Thread: 5 Keys to Seahawk Game
5 Keys to Seahawk Game
Here's how I see it:
1. Contain Alexander: I expect that Shaun Alexander will get his 100 yards this week. That's not what is important. The Rams need to make him work for his yards. If he carries the ball 25 times and gets 100-125 yards, the Rams can overcome that. If he rips off big runs, though, that could be a huge problem for the Rams. The bright side is that the Rams run defense (despite allowing a big day from Curtis Martin yesterday) has improved over the last third of the season (surprisingly, this has been since previous "bust" candidate Jimmy Kennedy returned to the lineup).
2. Avoid the Ball Hawks: The Seahawks' secondary is a high risk/high reward unit. They get beaten for a lot of yards and big plays, but they also make a lot of big plays themselves. Bulger has to avoid forcing the ball into coverage, particularly when surprising defensive rookie of the year candidate Michael Boulware is in the neighborhood.
3. Pressure Hasselbeck: The Rams' pass rush did a great job against the Jets with six sacks, 2 from unheralded Bryce Fisher. The Rams need to keep this up. Hasselbeck, like most second-tier QBs, can rip apart a defense when he has time to throw, but is mistake prone under pressure. The Rams had a terrible season intercepting passes. Perhaps they can change this around in the playoffs.
4. Avoid Special Teams Gaffes: If the Rams don't allow a big return or cough up the ball on special teams, Ram fans everywhere will be thrilled. The team's special teams have been downright embarrassing at times this year. Hopefully, that won't be the case next Saturday.
5. Don't Abandon the Run: While nobody expects Mike Martz to suddenly become Chuck Knox in his playcalling, the Rams need to mix in a healthy dose of Steven Jackson and Marshall Faulk to keep the Hawks defense honest. Frankly, I think Jackson could get on a role against the Hawks defense and be a key player in this game.
Re: 5 Keys to Seahawk Game
And... from Doug Farrar over at Seahawks.net (a very good fan site), here's the Seahawks' version:
1. Further develop the quick read, and alter blocking if neccesary: I swear to God, Leonard Little has gotten FASTER as the season has gone on. If he's in Hass' kitchen all day, the passing attack will not work. If Little is coming from our right, it might be worth moving Walter Jones to right tackle, or subbing Sean Locklear in rotation - Chris Gray and Floyd Womack have not been able to handle this guy on a consistent basis, and blitz pickup from our backs has been iffy at best. Hasselbeck has been productive with the quick pass recently, and I think that continuing this strategy is imperative. As Avenger mentioned, Bryce Fisher will be a problem as well, but everything begins with Little's ability to disrupt.
2. Get on Bulger with a quickness: Especially in the game at St. Louis, Ray Rhodes' "Rush 4, Drop 7" defense allowed Bulger to pick us apart. He's no better than Hasselbeck if he's rattled (in fact, he's worse under pressure), but he may be more dangerous than Hass if he's allowed to sit back there and read everything. It is worth giving up the occasional big play to bring up a man or two and establish consistent pressure.
3. Keep Koren Robinson out, and DO NOT develop the game plan around him: We can beat the Rams without K-Bong, but we can't beat them if we do what we did against the Falcons - draw up the game plan assuming he'll be there, only to be disappointed again.
4. Tackling drills all week!: Open-field tackling against the Falcons was horrid, and Steven Jackson is really warming up the the NFL. The Seahawks have given up 1191 yards rushing in their last seven games (170.1 per game).
5. Run Shaun at least 25 times: There are weaknesses in the Rams' quick-fire defense, and they are susceptible to the run. In addition, it's time to integrate play action more. In St. Louis, the Seahawks' refusal to give the ball to Shaun in the red zone caused them to land a big "Ofer" on TDs inside the 20.
6. Develop seletive amnesia, and a taste for revenge: Every meatheaded journalist in America will be overcooking the Seahawks' 17-point collapse at the "Q". This is where we get to shove it down their throats!