5 Key Moments in Seahawks' NFC West-Clinching Victory vs. Rams

For the first time in four years, Seattle stands alone atop the NFC West after a defensive beatdown of the Los Angeles Rams at Lumen Field. Which five moments proved to be most critical in a 20-9 victory?
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The Seahawks stifled the Los Angeles Rams by the score of 20-9 on Sunday, clinching an NFC West title for the first time since 2016 and guaranteeing a home playoff game at Lumen Field.

Let's dive into five key moments from Seattle's Week 16 win:

Quandre Diggs makes an interception deep in Seahawks territory.

The Rams held a slight lead at 6-3 in the middle of the second quarter. They possessed the ball with a chance to go up by two scores and drove into Seattle territory. From the Seahawks' 29 yard-line, Goff rolled right and sailed a pass toward the end zone that fell right into Diggs' clutches. The newly minted Pro Bowler came away with his team-leading fifth interception and returned it 25 yards. That crucial turnover prevented another Rams score and led to a Seattle field goal to tie the game before the half. 

Russell Wilson completes 45-yard pass to David Moore

Early in the second half, the Seahawks had the ball with the game tied at 6-6 with a chance to take the lead. The drive, however, was in peril with a 3rd and 8 situation on their own 32 yard-line. Wilson rolled right and chucked the ball deep to David Moore, who was heavily covered along the right sideline. Moore made a fantastic grab, securing not only the first down but an enormous 45-yard play to break the dam in a game where it took over a half of football for Seattle's offense to find its footing. This big play set up the first touchdown of the day for either team, a four-yard scramble by Wilson, giving Seattle a vital 13-6 lead. That score does not happen without this huge throw by Wilson and catch by Moore. 

Seattle finishes off an epic goal line stand

With the Seahawks clinging to a 13-6 lead, the Rams looked to drive down and tie the game with a score of their own. They came as close as humanly possible to succeeding without actually doing it. The Rams had 1st and goal at the two-yard line, essentially giving them four chances to punch the ball into the end zone to tie the game. The much-improved Seattle defense held stout, including a critical tackle by Jamal Adams on second down. Goff tried to sneak into the end zone on 3rd and goal from the 1 but was stuffed inches short. Instead of trying a chip-shot field goal, the Rams went for it and the Seahawks defense denied Malcolm Brown thanks to the heroics of rookie linebacker Jordyn Brooks. This kept the Rams from scoring any points and allowed the Seahawks to take more time off the clock. This was the key moment in the game where momentum clearly had swung further into Seattle's favor.

Russell Wilson pass to DK Metcalf for a critical first down in the fourth quarter

Seattle had a chance late to seal the game and division with a touchdown, already up 13-9. Russell Wilson and company faced a crucial 3rd and 7 from the Rams' 27 yard-line with less than five minutes left to play. If Seattle failed to convert, they would have had to settle for a field goal and leave the door open for the Rams to tie it. However, Wilson fired a bullet to Metcalf for eight yards and perhaps the biggest first down of the entire season. Metcalf caught the ball and, to his credit, fought tooth-and-nail to get that extra yard for the first down. This allowed Seattle to have a fresh set of downs, milk the clock further, and set up for the game-sealing touchdown.

Russell Wilson pass to Jacob Hollister for a 13-yard touchdown

Wilson's only passing touchdown of the day was the biggest one of the entire season. The Seahawks faced a 3rd and 3 from the Rams' 13 yard-line late in the fourth quarter. A touchdown would all but seal the win and the division title. Wilson floated a pass into the left corner of the end zone right into the arms of Hollister for Wilson's 38th passing touchdown of the year. This extended Seattle's lead to 20-9 with less than three minutes left in the game. The score put the Rams into desperation mode and they failed to mount the comeback, sealing the division title for the Seahawks.