As the season progressed, the more it seemed that Jeff Fisher would remain the head coach of the Los Angeles Rams. Upon electing to start Goff and news of his contract extension, Fisher’s firing blindsided the NFL and promptly put John Fassel as the interim head coach.
Fassel, the former special teams coordinator, found out the news on Monday and had three days to prepare for his first game. In fact, Fassel is the first interim head coach to debut during a Thursday night game. With little time to prepare, Fassel reached out to Fisher in order to get a breakdown on how to move forward.
The Rams traveled to CenturyLink Field, to take on the Seattle Seahawks and the 12th man. In a hostile environment, quarterback Jared Goff will surely have his hands full. The No. 1 overall pick fought for the position to start in the NFL and is quickly finding out what happens when you aren’t prepared.
The ferocious Seahawks’ defense definitely sees a weak quarterback to feast upon, as Goff has yet to prove he can compete and produce results consistently as a quarterback.
While Goff has had trouble starting on the right foot, running back Todd Gurley hasn’t found any footing this season. The second-year player is currently in a deep sophomore slump, as his production has slipped.
Opposing defenses now have proper game film to prepare for him, while his offensive line hasn’t been as stable as it was in 2015. Gurley still has yet to exceed 100 yards in a game this season and will face a tough front seven of the Seahawks.
As of now, Gurley and Goff remain the cornerstones of the offense and the franchise moving forward, needing to form some cohesion during these last three regular season games. The offense’s lack of points this season has put the defense at a disadvantage, basically asking them to play perfect.
Wide receiver Brian Quick and running back Benny Cunningham have yet to practice this week, putting their status for Thursday in doubt.
For the Seahawks, running back C.J. Prosise has yet to practice, while full back Will Tukuafu still remains sidelined recovering from a concussion. The Seahawks are still adjusting their secondary, after safety Earl Thomas was sidelined for the season with a broken tibia.
Coming into Week 15, the Seahawks boast the 13th ranked offense (357.6 YPG) and eighth ranked defense (330.2 YPG). On the other hand, the Rams hold the worst ranked offense in the NFL (286.2 YPG) and 10th ranked defense (340.5 YPG).
When looking at the specifics, you can see the major differences in the offensive attack for both teams. The Seahawks average 253.5 passing yards per game (12th) and 104.2 rushing yards per game (19th). Entering the contest, the Rams are averaging 205.1 passing yards per game (29th) and 81.1 rushing yards per game (30th).
Fassel’s first contest as interim head coach not only is an audition for him, but for the entire roster. The Rams have won three consecutive games against the Seahawks and have a chance to finish with the best divisional record.
While the Rams stated that the Fisher firing was at the right time, it left the roster just three days to process the outcome and to get motivated for their next game. Seattle is expecting snow showers on Sunday, with winds reaching upwards of six MPH.
A strong outing here would go a long way for the franchise, as they come in heavy underdogs against the Seahawks.