Rams hurt themselves with five turnovers in 16-10 loss to Seahawks

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One day, perhaps sooner than later, Jared Goff will lead a fourth-quarter drive that produces a dramatic comeback victory.

The Rams’ second-year quarterback had an opportunity in Week 2 against the Washington Redskins and, on the first play of the drive, threw an ill-advised pass that was easily intercepted.

On Sunday against the Seattle Seahawks, Goff got another chance.

Despite committing three second-half turnovers, he kept his cool and made big throws in the final minute. He stepped up in the pocket and fired a seemingly perfect pass into the end zone with less than 10 seconds left.


But the ball bounced off the fingertips of the diving — and usually sure-handed — Cooper Kupp.

Goff’s final pass fell short, leaving the Rams with a 16-10 defeat before an announced crowd of 60,745 at the Coliseum. The loss dropped the Rams to 3-2 overall and 1-1 in the NFC West.

“I’m sick about it,” coach Sean McVay said.

A week after proving they were for real by winning at Dallas, the Rams failed to take the next step — to prove they are a legitimate playoff contender.

A team that was averaging an NFL-best 35.5 points scored only one touchdown, on a 27-yard run by Tavon Austin in the second quarter, and committed five turnovers against their division’s perennial power, wasting a mostly exceptional effort by the Rams’ defense. They held the Seahawks to one touchdown for the game and just two field goals in the second half — and still came up short.

It was not a good look for a Rams team that will not return to the Coliseum until Nov. 12, when they play the Houston Texans.

Next the Rams travel to Jacksonville, and then will stay in Florida before jetting to London to play the Arizona Cardinals. That game is followed by an off week before they travel across the country to play the New York Giants.


The extended time away from the Coliseum might work in favor of a Rams offense that played well in consecutive road victories over the San Francisco 49ers and the Cowboys. Goff and running back Todd Gurley starred in those wins, but both struggled against the Seahawks and made costly mistakes.

On the opening possession, the Rams thrashed the Seahawks with Gurley runs and Goff passes. But Seahawks safety Earl Thomas ended the threat and extinguished the Rams’ momentum by knocking the ball out of Gurley’s hand at the one-yard line. The ball hit the end zone pylon for a touchback.

“I’ve got to do a good job of taking care of the ball, no ifs, ands or buts about it,” said Gurley, who rushed for only 43 yards, the first time in three games he was held to fewer than 100.

Gurley’s fumble was one of several oddities in the game, including Rams kicker Greg Zuerlein’s first missed field goal attempt in 16 tries this season. Goff also unexpectedly regressed, at least in terms of turnovers: He had two passes intercepted and also lost a fumble.

McVay said Goff made “a couple uncharacteristic decisions.” Goff, who completed 22 of 47 passes for 288 yards, agreed.


“I can be a lot better than I was today,” he said.

The Seahawks defense might be aging but it still showed it can unnerve a young quarterback.

“You could see some balls were getting away,” said Seahawks coach Pete Carroll, whose team overcame a 10-0 deficit to improve to 3-2. “I don’t know if that’s because of rush or coverage or not, I just know the ball was not on target.”

The Rams trailed 13-10 in the third quarter but seemed poised to answer with at least a field goal when they drove to the Seahawks’ 15.

Lineman Sheldon Richardson, however, intercepted a Goff pass to end the threat.

The Rams threatened again midway through the fourth quarter, but safety Earl Thomas picked off a Goff pass.

On the Rams’ next possession, Seahawks end Frank Clark beat stalwart left tackle Andrew Whitworth and stripped Goff for a fumble that Richardson recovered.

The Seahawks led 16-10 when Goff got one last chance with just 1 minute 7 seconds left. He completed a long pass to tight end Tyler Higbee and a mid-range strike to receiver Robert Woods as the Rams drove to the Seahawks’ 20. But his third-down pass into the end zone bounced off Kupp’s hands.


“We’re playing in the NFL,” the rookie Kupp said. “You’re expected to make those plays and my expectations are no different. … If I’m putting my hands on the ball, I’ve got to make the play.”

Said Goff: “He ran an incredible route, and I wish I could have put it just that much closer to him.”

Goff looked again for Kupp on the Rams’ final play, but the pass bounced short.

Follow Gary Klein on Twitter @latimesklein