Last Sunday's performance against the Jets by the Rams defense has not changed Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll's perception of the unit since they last faced them in Week 10.
Overall, Carroll sees a unit that continues "to play really consistent."
"(You look at) their numbers, they've been in control for a long time (with their) rush numbers," Carroll said on a conference call with Rams beat writers Wednesday, when asked for his evaluation L.A.'s defense since the first meeting. "And with the pass rush that they have, they've kept the passing game in check. So they've been very consistent."
When the two teams first met six weeks ago, the Rams defense held Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson to 248 passing yards – at the time his second-lowest of the season – and picked him off twice in a 23-16 Los Angeles win at SoFi Stadium. While wide receiver Tyler Lockett had five catches for 66 yards, second-year standout D.K. Metcalf caught just two passes for 28 yards.
Wilson rebounded with nine touchdowns against just three interceptions in his next five games, but his performance against L.A. remains the lone one so far this season that he has been held without a passing touchdown. Running back Alex Collins' 13-yard, first-quarter touchdown run and a trio of Jason Myers field goals accounted for Seattle's points in the first game.
Heading into that matchup, the Rams had the NFL's No. 2 pass defense (197.1 yards per game) and No. 5 rush defense (94.8), together giving them the league's No. 2 pass defense. (291.9)
Entering Week 16, they have the NFL's No. 1 pass defense, allowing a league-low 192 yards per game through the air. Their rush defense (94.1 yards per game) is second in the league, and those efforts collectively have produced the NFL's No. 1 total defense (286.1).
"This is not just a one guy setting the whole tone of this defense," said Carroll, who pointed to defensive lineman Sebastian Joseph-Day's quickness, explosiveness and penetration as well as defensive lineman Morgan Fox's pass-rushing as examples. "The whole group plays and (defensive lineman) Aaron (Donald) is as good as there's ever been in the game. He has that factor, but you couldn't be this good unless you got a lot of guys playing ball and they've been able to do it with some guys who've been banged up and brought in some linebackers they needed to play. They've come through too. And the secondary, like I said, mentioned (safety) Jordan (Fuller) and (safety) John Johnson (III) back there, they're real big factors in how they play. Those guys add to the pass rush too. (Cornerback) Darious Williams had a fantastic game against us and continues to be a factor. So, this is a good, good group now. There's no doubt about it."
Despite those statistical rankings, only two players from Los Angeles' defense were named to the 2021 Pro Bowl – Donald and cornerback Jalen Ramsey – but Carroll indicated that doesn't reflect the way the rest of the unit has been playing.
"Well, their whole defense is playing like a Pro Bowl defense," Carroll said. "(Outside linebacker) Leonard Floyd had a great year. (Defensive lineman) Michael Brockers is always difficult. (Defensive lineman) Sebastian (Joseph-Day) is tough. I mean, their whole crew is tough to deal with. Their safeties play good, man. I mean, every part of their defense is playing well, so they should feel every bit that. It'd be frustrating to them because you can't have much of a better year than they're having."