Rams vs. Seahawks Notebook: Bobby Wagner Gets Slight Revenge, Cam Akers Leads Run Game

Even with a roster of skin and bones, the Los Angeles Rams nearly came away with a thrilling win over the Seattle Seahawks on Sunday.

Faced with loads of adversity, the Los Angeles Rams entered Sunday’s divisional meeting with the Seattle Seahawks at SoFi Stadium with nothing to lose.

And as it turns out, that’s exactly how they played. Though due to their best efforts without a handful of stars, the Rams still fell 27-23 after a late game-winning touchdown by Seahawks receiver DK Metcalf crushed LA’s hopes at securing an upset.

But in a game where the Seahawks (7-5) were expected to cruise to a win, the Rams (3-9) — despite now dropping their sixth straight game — proved they have plenty of fight left in the tank and left Sunday with plenty to feel positive about.

Let’s look at three takeaways from the loss:

Bobby Wagner shines in revenge game

Wagner had downplayed his reunion with the Seahawks prior to Sunday. A revenge game? Hardly.

But Wagner’s inspired performance proved that a matchup against a team he spent the past decade with clearly meant more to him than he wanted to admit.

The vet finished with a season-high two sacks after entering Week 13 with three this season. Wagner also secured the 12th interception of his career on a wild play that saw him jostle for the ball with Seahawks running back Tony Jones Jr. before coming away with possession on the ground.

Without Aaron Donald in LA’s lineup, Wagner had to step up. But it was obviously nothing new for the future Hall of Famer in what was certainly his best game of the season.

Led by Cam Akers, run game continues to show life

For the third straight game, the Rams topped 100 yards on the ground. But for one of the first times this season, that production was a key factor in the offense’s success.

Against a Seattle rushing defense that has struggled mightily, the Rams finished with a season-high 171 rushing yards, as running back Cam Akers led the way with his best performance of the season. He finished with a season-high 17 carries for 60 yards and two touchdowns, the second of which gave LA a late lead in the fourth quarter.

Two months ago, no one would’ve believed you if you told them Akers would maintain a lead role in the backfield after all the trade drama that went down before the deadline. But the third-year running back looks to be the answer in the running game for the rest of the season after his strong performance on Sunday.

Speedy Rams receivers find rhythm

No matter how it got done, Rams coach Sean McVay clearly had an intention to get his speedsters involved against a Seattle defense that has struggled.

With receivers Cooper Kupp and Allen Robinson injured, LA had to rely on the youth and speed of Tutu Atwell and Brandon Powell, who both provided quite interesting yet solid stat lines in Sunday’s loss.

Atwell led the team with 48 receiving yards on two catches while adding four carries for 23 yards. He even beat Seahawks rookie Tariq Woolen — who is tied for a league-leading six interceptions — on a 30-yard catch in the first quarter that led to a Rams field goal. His speed was visibly impactful.

But Powell’s versatility shined brightest in some of the biggest moments for LA. He finished with four catches for 39 yards but was more productive as a runner, as he had three carries for 45 yards.

Powell’s 20-yard run late in the fourth helped lead to Akers’ go-ahead touchdown two plays later. He had a 16-yard run late in the second quarter that helped spark a scoring drive as well.

Both young receivers have experienced struggles this season. But at a time when the Rams are seeing what kind of contributors they can have for next season with the playoffs out of the question this year, Atwell and Powell showed they’ve grown.

You can follow Zach Dimmitt on Twitter at @ZachDimmitt7

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