SEATTLE – Quietly, Aaron Donald, Jared Goff and the rest of the Los Angeles Rams seethed.
They watched less than two weeks ago as the Seattle Seahawks loudly celebrated a division title the Rams felt they gave away. Los Angeles desperately wanted another shot.
Behind a lot of Cam Akers churning yards on the ground and mostly a great defense, the Rams are moving on in the NFC playoffs at the expense of the Seahawks.
“We come up here, and all week we were told how good they are and how we snuck into the playoffs," Goff said. "Two weeks ago you saw them smoking cigars and getting all excited about beating us, and winning the division, and we were able to come up here and beat them.”
Akers rushed for 131 yards and a touchdown, Darious Williams returned Russell Wilson’s interception 42 yards for a score, and the Rams beat the Seahawks 30-20 in the NFC wild-card playoff game Saturday.
“A lot of guys stepped up and answered the bell in a big way,” Rams coach Sean McVay said. “Darious Williams showing up, I thought that was a huge momentum shift for us.”
The best defense in the league during the regular season carried its dominance into the playoffs — even while missing unanimous All-Pro tackle Aaron Donald for much of the second half. No team was better at limiting yards or points than the Rams (11-6) and they continued to torment Wilson and the Seahawks (12-5).
Seattle's quarterback was under siege from the defensive front and a secondary that minus one play never let DK Metcalf or Tyler Lockett break loose. Donald, before leaving with a rib injury, and Jalen Ramsey were superb. But so were other role players such as Troy Reeder, Jordan Fuller and Leonard Floyd.