SEATTLE — The Seattle Seahawks are NFC West champions, and they have their resurgent defense to thank for that.
Few would have predicted this at midseason, when Russell Wilson & Co. were on a roll while Seattle was setting or threatening NFL records for defensive futility.
Wilson and the offense did their part in closing out the victory after a sluggish start. Wilson rushed for a touchdown in the third quarter and threw for another with 4 minutes, 30 seconds remaining in the fourth, hitting Jacob Hollister from 13 yards out to put the game out of reach.
In Week 17 of last season, Hollister came within inches of crossing the goal line in a loss to the San Francisco 49ers; a TD would have clinched the NFC West title for Seattle.
The Seahawks sacked Jared Goff three times and took advantage of an inexplicable throw that was picked off by Pro Bowl safety Quandre Diggs. They stopped the Rams on consecutive plays from the 1-yard line earlier in the game, when L.A. ran four plays from inside the 5 and came away with no points.
Wilson finished 20-of-32 for 225 yards, one passing touchdown and one rushing score. Jason Myers made two field goals to remain perfect on the season (22-of-22).
The Seahawks close out the regular season against the 49ers in Glendale, Arizona, next Sunday.