The Los Angeles Rams got a big boost in their Wild Card clash with the Seattle Seahawks on Saturday when cornerback Darious Williams pulled off a brilliant pick-six on an ill-fated pass from Russell Wilson.
With the Rams offense struggling mightily to generate momentum, in part due to the game plan changing on the fly with Rams signal-caller John Wolford getting injured in the first quarter, Williams broke through with a massive play.
But Wilson had an answer on the very next drive, making a sleepy game suddenly electrifying.
WATCH: Darious Williams notches pick-6, Russell Wilson comes back firing
Wilson was attempting to throw a quick screen outside to stud wideout DK Metcalf, but Williams diagnosed the play perfectly, beating a sluggish block attempt by Freddie Swain to step in front of the pass and take it to the house.
Here’s the footage, courtesy of The Checkdown:
That 42-yard catch and subsequent scamper to the end zone by Williams put the Rams on top 13-3 following the extra point.
But Wilson would answer in a massive way, using some of his trademark magic by turning his back to Los Angeles’ vaunted defense, escaping the pocket, and lobbing a beautiful touch pass downfield to none other than Metcalf for a 51-yard touchdown bomb:
Wow. How quickly things change, and with a savvy, playoff veteran like Wilson operating coolly and calmly under pressure, it’s no surprise he had something special in store to respond to the adversity. Props to Metcalf, too, for sticking with the play during a scramble drill and shifting momentum back to Seattle.
Darious Williams, Rams continue elite defensive form in Wild Card playoffs
Any defense is susceptible to Wilson making something happen, but overall, the Rams have a lot to be proud of as a defense. They were first in the NFL during the regular season in points and total yards allowed, thanks to the genius of new defensive coordinator Brandon Staley.
It’s obvious the Rams D benefits from the presence of superstar Aaron Donald in the heart of the trenches, yet they’ve also found a strong pass rush and boast a phenomenal secondary led by Jalen Ramsey. Not to be overshadowed, though, is Wiliams, whose big play on the big stage will make him more of a household name.
According to Pro Football Focus’ grades, Williams ranked sixth in the NFL, just ahead of Ramsey, among all qualifying cornerbacks. Based on his excellent anticipation for the pick-six, it’s hardly a surprise Wiliams was in position to make that play based on his gaudy PFF ranking.