posted on December 28, 2012 14:31
In the original Legend of Zelda on Nintendo, Spectacle Rock was home to the evil, mystically nefarious Gannon (or Gannondorf). Known as Level Nine by many, it was where Link attempted to capture the final triforce and save Princess Zelda once and for all.
It was also where Link went to die.
I was playing Zelda the other day and could hardly believe my eyes when I entered a secret room in the game's eighth level.
It was a warning from the Old Man.
You see, centuries ago, Link entered death and came out alive. But barely.
And thus, the Seattle Seahawks named the NFL's house of death CenturyLink. You can't make this stuff up, people. This is real.
WHERE NFL TEAMS GO TO DIE
In 2012, the Seattle Seahawks are 7-0 at home. They've outscored opponents at home 223-82. That includes victories over the Cowboys, Packers*, Patriots, Vikings and 49ers.
The Seahawks are 58-29 all time at CenturyLink field, good for a .667 win percentage.
It's loud and impossible for offenses to succeed if they waste any seconds deciding what play to call. Even when the play is called in prompt fashion, the 12th Man is so freaking loud it's hard to figure out what the heck is going on.
And this is all just from the vantage point of the couch. Last week, Colin Kaepernick and Jim Harbaugh looked like dazed, rattled rookies trying to communicate with the Seattle fans blaring noise.
RAMS WILL BE FIGHTING FOR A WINNING RECORD
The Rams beat the Seahawks 19-13 in Week 4. The 'Hawks were coming off a short week, having defeated (cough replacement refs cough) the Green Bay Packers on Monday Night Football just days earlier.
In Week 4, the Rams had their way with Russell Wilson, sacking him twice and intercepting him three times. It was Wilson's worst day as a pro.
It was a win that was cultivated by the defense and special teams. Greg Zuerlein converted 4/4 field goals, including kicks of 58 and 60 yards. The lone offensive touchdown was a fake field goal pass by holder/punter Johnny Hekker to Danny Amendola, who was left unattended to on the edge of the sideline.
The offense was subpar against a good Seattle defense in Week 4. Sam Bradford completed 16/30 passes for 221 yards with one interception. Steven Jackson rushed for 55 yards on 18 carries. The highlight was a 52-yard strike from Bradford to Givens near the end of the first quarter.
It was followed up by a lowlight: a Bradford interception to Richard Sherman.
Sherman, by the way, won his appeal for PED's which means he'll be ready to go in Week 17.
HOW THEY STACK UP IN WEEK 17
The Seahawks aren't the same team they were in Week 4. They're lethal now. They're the football equivalent of Gannon or M Bison or Mike Tyson. Especially at home.
Russell Wilson plays beyond his rookie status. He's completed 63 percent of his passes, thrown a rookie-best 25 touchdowns, rushed for three more scores and has been picked off 10 times. He has a passer rating of 98.0. He's already a legitimate, top-flight quarterback.
He's also married to a white woman, which means ESPN's Rob Parker probably questions how truly black Russell Wilson is.
The Seahawks are better than the Rams across the board with the exception of the defensive front and the defense's ability to force negative pass plays. The Rams are No. 2 in the NFL at forcing negative pass plays (sacks and INT's). It's been the strength of the team all season long.
So while Seattle has improved since Week 4, the Rams are still only capable of winning games by forcing turnovers. It's on the defense to force turnovers and put the Rams' inconsistent, mediocre offense in position to score. It should be the case again in Week 17.
THE RAMS WANT NFC WEST BRAGGING RIGHTS
If the Rams pull off an improbable victory, they'll finish 2012 undefeated in NFC West play. They want nothing more than to ruin Seattle's mojo before they start their Super Bowl quest.
I don't like the chances, but I am eager and very interested to see how long and how well the Rams can hang in Seattle against the Seahawks. The 'Hawks are clicking on all cylinders right now. They're playing their best football of the year, having outscored their last three opponents (the Cardinals, Bills and 49ers) 150-30.
By comparison, the St. Louis Rams have defeated the Cardinals, Bills and 49ers 62-42 in their most recent three games against those teams.
Unless Sam Bradford and the offense can generate some consistency scoring touchdowns, a win in Seattle is highly unlikely.
But that's why the game is played. Can't wait to see the Rams put up their fight.
LET'S RAM IT!