Rams lose to Seahawks, reveal Matthew Stafford has spinal contusion

Seahawks cornerback Tariq Woolen intercepts a pass in front of Rams running back Kyren Williams.
Seahawks cornerback Tariq Woolen intercepts a pass in front of Rams running back Kyren Williams during the second quarter Sunday at SoFi Stadium.
(Wally Skalij / Los Angeles Times)

Geno Smith finds DK Metcalf on a short touchdown pass in the final minute in the Seahawks’ 27-23 win as the Rams become the first defending Super Bowl champion to lose six consecutive games.

Matthew Stafford dealing with spinal cord contusion

Los Angeles Rams quarterback Matthew Stafford passes against the New Orleans Saints.
Rams quarterback Matthew Stafford passes against the New Orleans Saints on Nov. 22.
(Butch Dill / Associated Press)

Rams quarterback Matthew Stafford has a spinal cord contusion and is probably done for season, coach Sean McVay said Sunday after a 27-23 defeat by the Seattle Seahawks at SoFi Stadium.

Stafford was placed on injured reserve on Saturday. He would not be eligible to return until the second to last game against the Chargers on Jan 1.

Stafford, 34, has passed for 10 touchdowns, with eight interceptions in nine games.

The 14th-year pro has been in concussion protocol twice this season.

John Wolford started for the Rams on Sunday.


Rams can’t pull off miracle comeback, suffer their sixth consecutive loss

🏈 Seahawks 27, Rams 23 — FINAL

John Wolford was unable to launch a game-winning drive on the Rams’ final possession, dooming the defending Super Bowl champions to their sixth consecutive loss.

An eight-yard touchdown pass from Seahawks quarterback Geno Smith to DK Metcalf in the final minute proved to be the difference.

The Rams’ comeback try came to an ugly end when Wolford was picked off by Cody Barton.

Wolford completed 14 of 26 passes for 178 yards, with two interceptions. Cam Akers, who scored the Rams’ first touchdown on their first possession, finished with 60 yards in 17 carries.

Smith completed 28 of 39 passes for 367 yards, with three touchdowns and an interception. Tyler Lockett also played a big role in the Seahawks’ win, making nine catches for 128 yards and a touchdown.

With quarterback Matthew Stafford likely done for the season with a neck injury, it could be a very rough final month of the season for the injury-riddled Rams.


DK Metcalf touchdown catch puts Seahawks ahead in final minute

🏈 Seahawks 27, Rams 23 — 36 seconds left in regulation

DK Metcalf caught an eight-yard touchdown pass from Geno Smith with less than a minute left in regulation to put the Rams on the edge of their sixth consecutive loss.

Metcalf has eight catches on the afternoon. Smith has passed for 367 yards and three touchdowns.

Can the Rams pull off a miracle comeback here?


Cam Akers touchdown thrusts Rams into the lead

🏈 Rams 23, Seahawks 20 — 2:56 left in the fourth quarter

Cam Akers scored on a six-yard touchdown run to give the Rams a lead late in the fourth quarter.

It was the Rams’ first touchdown since their opening possession of the game.

John Wolford guided the Rams 75 yards on nine plays.

Will the Rams end their five-game losing streak or win Seahawks quarterback Geno Smith play spoiler?


Seahawks kick another field goal to extend lead

🏈 Seahawks 20, Rams 16 — 6:46 left in the fourth quarter

Jason Myers kicked a 26-yard field goal at the end of an 11-play, 67-yard drive to give Seattle a little wiggle room on the scoreboard with time running out.

Geno Smith’s 27-yard pass to receiver Tyler Lockett was the key play during the drive.

Smith has completed 22 of 30 passes for 302 yards and two touchdowns, with an interception.

Lockett has eight catches for 118 yards. DK Metcalf has six catches for 100 yards.

John Wolford and the Rams will have to find the end zone soon here — something they haven’t done since their opening possession.


Rams tack on another field goal to make it a one-point game

Rams linebacker Bobby Wagner celebrates after intercepting a pass during the second half.
(Mark J. Terrill / Associated Press)

🏈 Seahawks 17, Rams 16 — 12:57 left in the fourth quarter

Rams linebacker Bobby Wagner intercepted a pass, setting up a drive that ended with Matt Gay’s 32-yard field goal.

Wagner has two sacks and an interception in his first game against his former team.

Rams quarterback John Wolford was examined in the medical tent after a third-quarter sack, but stayed in the game. Wolford left again for one play later in the quarter, then returned and fired a 23-yard pass to Van Jefferson.

The Rams drove to the eight-yard line before Wolford was sacked on third down, bringing on Gay for the field-goal attempt.


Jason Myers field goal extends Seahawks’ lead in third quarter

Rams quarterback John Wolford is sacked by Seattle Seahawks linebacker Jordyn Brooks during the second half.
(Marcio Jose Sanchez / Associated Press)

🏈 Seahawks 17, Rams 13 — 7:33 left in the third quarter

The Rams forced a turnover but could not take advantage of the opportunity, and the Seahawks made them pay with a 46-yard field goal by Jason Myers.

Rams linebacker Michael Hoecht sacked Seahawks quarterback Geno Smith and forced him to fumble, giving the Rams a chance to gain some momentum.

But the Rams went three and out, with quarterback John Wolford going to the medical tent after he was sacked.

Smith’s 40-yard pass to receiver DK Metcalf was the key play as the Seahawks drove to the eight-yard line.

But Smith’s third-down pass to Metcalf fell incomplete. A personal-foul penalty against Metcalf after the play pushed the ball back, but Myers made his kick.


Matt Gay’s 54-yard field goal makes it a one-point game

Rams quarterback John Wolford runs with the ball during the first half against the Seahawks.
(Mark J. Terrill / Associated Press)

🏈 Seahawks 14, Rams 13 — HALFTIME

Matt Gay kicked a 54-yard field goal with 55 seconds left in the second quarter to pull the Rams to within one point.

The Rams offense capitalized after the Seahawks failed to take advantage of an interception by cornerback Tariq Woolen.

Receiver Brandon Powell gained 16 yards on a jet sweep during the drive that stalled when Seahawks linebacker Uchenna Nwosu sacked John Wolford.

Wolford has completed nine of 16 passes for 123 yards, with an interception.

Rams linebacker Bobby Wagner has two sacks against his former team.


Seattle retakes lead on Geno Smith TD pass

Seattle Seahawks quarterback Geno Smith throws under pressure from Rams safety Taylor Rapp during the first half.
(Mark J. Terrill / Associated Press)

🏈 Seahawks 14, Rams 10 — 9:48 left in the second quarter

Geno Smith’s four-yard touchdown pass to tight end Noah Fant capped a 91-yard drive that put the Seahawks in the lead.

Smith completed passes of 17 yards to Fant, 25 yards to receiver DK Metcalf and 12 yards to receiver Tyler Lockett during the 11-play drive.

Smith has completed eight of 13 passes for 124 yards and two touchdowns.

Lockett has three catches for 58 yards and a touchdown.


Matt Gay field goal gives Rams the lead again

Rams quarterback John Wolford passes against the Seattle Seahawks.
(Marcio Jose Sanchez / Associated Press)

🏈 Rams 10, Seahawks 7 — 2:34 left in the first quarter

Matt Gay kicked a 40-yard field goal as the Rams offense scored on its second straight possession.

Receiver Tutu Atwell made the key play of the 53-yard drive when he made a one-handed catch over the middle that resulted in a 30-yard gain.

Receiver Brandon Powell had a 13-yard reception during the seven-play drive.

John Wolford has completed seven of nine passes for 98 yards.

Powell has three catches for 30 yards.


Tyler Lockett touchdown catch ties game in first quarter

Seattle Seahawks wide receiver Tyler Lockett celebrates after scoring a first touchdown in the first quarter.
(Marcio Jose Sanchez / Associated Press)

🏈 Rams 7, Seahawks 7 — 6:05 left in the first quarter

Rams linebacker Bobby Wagner, who played 10 seasons for the Seahawks, sacked quarterback Geno Smith, but Smith came back on the next play and delivered a 36-yard touchdown pass to receiver Tyler Lockett.

Smith showed great pocket presence, side-stepping another potential sack before connecting with Lockett.

The scoring play capped a six-play, 75-yard drive.

Rookie running back Kenneth Walker III started the drive with a 30-yard run.


John Wolford and Cam Akers carry Rams to early TD

🏈 Rams 7, Seahawks 0 — 9:30 left in the first quarter

Rams running back Cam Akers is congratulated by coach Sean McVay.
Rams running back Cam Akers is congratulated by coach Sean McVay after scoring on a touchdown run in the first quarter.
(Marcio Jose Sanchez / Associated Press)

John Wolford, starting at quarterback in place of injured Matthew Stafford, directed a 10-play, 77-yard drive that running back Cam Akers finished with a one-yard touchdown run.

Akers carried the ball four times for 17 yards during the drive.

Wolford’s 22-yard completion to receiver Ben Skowronek and receiver Brandon Powell’s 14-yard gain on a catch-and-run were other key plays.

Powell and receiver Tutu Atwell also carried the ball on jet sweeps.


NFL readers Q&A: Will Rams get legit backup QB? What’s with Brandon Staley’s logic?

Rams coach Sean McVay talks to quarterback John Wolford before a loss to the Arizona Cardinals on Nov. 13.
(Mark J. Terrill / Associated Press)

The Rams seems to add a superstar to the injury list each week, this week it is Aaron Donald, and have lost a record five in a row with Sean McVay as head coach. As they try to find healthy bodies to put on the playing field, the Chargers have gotten some back and are well within reach of a playoff spot. With six weeks to go, Los Angeles Times NFL writer Sam Farmer, Rams beat writer Gary Klein and Chargers beat writer Jeff Miller address fans’ concerns and questions:

When will the Rams attempt to sign a valid backup QB ?

Jon Van Ness, Los Angeles

Klein: They re-signed John Wolford before this season because Sean McVay was confident he could run the offense if needed. Wolford will be a restricted free agent and Bryce Perkins will be an exclusive rights free agent. The Rams under coach Sean McVay have never budgeted to spend a lot of money on a backup. Even when Blake Bortles was with the team, that was only because he was owed so much money by Jacksonville and he and the Rams could afford to cut a deal. With Matthew Stafford at age 34, it will be interesting to see if McVay and Les Snead make finding a more experienced — and expensive — backup a priority.

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Why Rams removed Odell Beckham Jr. nameplate from locker room

Rams wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. stands for the national anthem before a game against the Arizona Cardinals.
Rams wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. stands for the national anthem before a game against the Arizona Cardinals in December 2021.
(Jeff Lewis / Associated Press)

The Rams presumably fell out of the running to re-sign free-agent wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. by failing to contend for the playoffs.

As perhaps an admission that that their pursuit was over, the nameplate that had adorned Beckham’s locker since last season finally has been removed.

Beckham, who has been recovering from knee surgery, reportedly has narrowed his choices to the Dallas Cowboys, New York Giants and other playoff-bound teams.

Beckham, 30, signed with the Rams near midseason last year. The three-time Pro Bowl player caught a touchdown pass early in the Super Bowl LVI victory over the Cincinnati Bengals before suffering a left knee injury in the second quarter. The injury required his second major surgery on the knee in three years.

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My Cause My Cleats: Rams honor a father who died by suicide, veterans and more

Matt Skura hopes to help others who are struggling while remembering his father Sunday.

During the NFL’s annual My Cause My Cleats celebration, the Rams center will wear custom yellow and gold cleats supporting the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention. The cleats feature the words “Out Of The Darkness” and “Douglas Skura Memorial Fund.”

“It’s to honor my dad, who took his own life this March,” Matt Skura told The Times. “It’s obviously been a difficult year for myself, my family. I thought this would be a great time to honor and remember him. And a great way to also bring to light mental health issues, mental health awareness.”

Rams’ Matt Skura for My Cause My Cleats
(Christina House / Los Angeles Times)
I chose to represent the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention to honor my Dad who took his own life in March

Listen to Matt Skura:

Douglas Skura was a 61-year-old orthopedic surgeon based in Ohio, where he lived with his wife and raised his three sons.

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Rams vs. Seattle Seahawks matchups, how to watch and prediction

Breaking down how the Rams (3-8) and the Seattle Seahawks (6-5) match up heading into their game at 1:05 p.m. PST on Sunday at SoFi Stadium. The game will be shown on Fox (Ch. 11) and streamed on NFL+.

When Rams have the ball

Rams quarterback John Wolford warms up before a loss to the Kansas City Chiefs on Nov. 27.
(Ed Zurga / Associated Press)

With Matthew Stafford sidelined because of a neck injury, John Wolford will start at quarterback for the second time this season. Wolford completed 24 of 36 passes for 212 yards and a touchdown, with an interception, in a Nov. 13 loss to the Arizona Cardinals.

In the 2020 season, Wolford started against the Seahawks in an NFC wild-card playoff game but was knocked out of the game in the first quarter because of a neck injury. Bryce Perkins, who started last week against the Kansas City Chiefs, also could play against the Seahawks.

With Cooper Kupp and Allen Robinson on injured reserve, tight end Tyler Higbee and receivers Van Jefferson, Ben Skowronek, Tutu Atwell and Brandon Powell are being counted on to step up. Running back Cam Akers did not practice for several days this week because of illness but is expected to play.

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Rams put Matthew Stafford on injured reserve ahead of Seahawks game

Rams quarterback Matthew Stafford watches from the sideline during a game against the New Orleans Saints.
(Tyler Kaufman / Associated Press)

The Rams on Saturday put quarterback Matthew Stafford on injured reserve because of a neck injury, almost certainly ending the 14th-year pro’s season and adding another footnote to the team’s lost season.

Stafford, 34, was cleared from concussion protocol Friday but was declared out of Sunday’s game against the Seattle Seahawks at SoFi Stadium.

John Wolford will start at quarterback for the Rams. Bryce Perkins also could play.

The Rams have six games left. Stafford would not be eligible to return until the final two games against the Chargers and Seahawks. But it seems unlikely the Rams would activate him for games that are on track to be meaningless for a team that goes into Sunday’s game with a 3-8 record and a five-game losing streak.

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Rams vs. Seahawks: Betting odds, lines and picks against the spread

Rams quarterback John Wolford runs the ball against the Arizona Cardinals on Nov. 13.
(Jae C. Hong / Associated Press)

Injuries are inevitable in the NFL, but the two Los Angeles teams sure seem to have more problems than most. The Rams will go into their Week 13 game with John Wolford as the starter as they hope to hang on and pull off a win over the Seattle Seahawks.

Seattle Seahawks (-7, 41) at Rams

The Seahawks aren’t the juggernaut that they appeared to be earlier in the season and this amounts to a must-win type of game for them. Seattle has dropped two in a row to the Buccaneers and Raiders, dropping from 6-3 to 6-5. With the Rams this week and the Panthers next week, an 8-5 record going into games against the 49ers and Chiefs would create a little bit of wiggle room.

Giving up 576 yards to the Raiders off of the bye would be a greater concern against a different team. The Rams are completely neutralized without Cooper Kupp in the passing game and added Allen Robinson to the injured reserve as well. The Rams are down to 4.6 yards per play and rank 28th in points per drive with just 1.52. Given that the majority of the season was played with Kupp and Matthew Stafford, those numbers started poorly and don’t show any signs of improvement.

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