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From the Podium: Seahawks, Week 18

THOUSAND OAKS, Calif. – Rams head coach Sean McVay, linebacker Bobby Wagner and quarterback Baker Mayfield each held press conferences with local media Wednesday, discussing their emotions surrounding the medical emergency experienced by Bills safety Damar Hamlin Monday night against the Seahawks, Wagner returning to Seattle to face the Seahawks, and more.

On Thursday, defensive coordinator Raheem Morris and offensive coordinator Liam Coen met with the media to also discuss Wagner's return to Seattle, running back Cam Akers' recent performances and more.

Here are some of the highlights and key takeaways from those conversations, which you can watch in their entirety below.

"This is where you listen, you try to learn, you try to be empathetic to the player's perspective." – McVay

  • When the Rams gathered for their team meeting Wednesday morning, the began the session giving players the chance to share their feelings about Monday night's traumatic event involving Hamlin.
  • "You're not going to pretend to know how to navigate situations that you've never been through," McVay said, which is why listening to and empathizing with the player's perspective was important.

"It's a lot of emotions, man, to be honest, but like I said last time I played them, I'm a master of my emotions." – Wagner

  • Wagner will take the same approach to his return to Seattle as it did when he faced the Seahawks back in Week 14. At the same time, he is keenly aware of the chance to play the role of spoiler.
  • "To be in a position to spoil their playoff hopes is always a good position, something worth playing for," Wagner said.

"It's tough to process. I think it takes time, especially when you think about him as a human being instead of just a football player. I don't think there's a right way to do it. I think it just takes time." – Mayfield

  • While each player is going to process Monday night's traumatic event differently, Mayfield – echoing Wagner – said what's important is players talking about their feelings and emotions on it.
  • "This is a violent sport, but that's about broken bones and different injuries like that, not life and death, so this is something I think we're all going through for the first time," Mayfield said.

"His year has just been awesome." – Morris

  • Wagner's impact has been felt both on and off the field by the Rams throughout his first season with the team.
  • "I could only compare it to the likes of (former Buccaneers linebacker) Derrick Brooks, when I was lucky enough to be around him as a very young coach, and the impact that he had on the team because he was the voice of everybody," Morris said.

"I just know that around the building, when you see Cam, when you're around him, you just see a little bit of a different look in his eye." – Coen

  • Coen isn't sure what's led to Cam Akers' highly productive performances over the last four weeks, but Akers' focus, concentration and confidence is noticeable.
  • Beyond the statistics, Coen said Akers' "detail without the football (in his hands) has been tremendous."

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