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Rams face big task in stopping Seahawks' Lynch

ST. LOUIS (AP) - The Seattle Seahawks' running game led by Marshawn Lynch poses problems for the 30th-ranked St. Louis Rams defense to overcome.

St. Louis has allowed 126 yards a game rushing.

The other numbers aren't much better. The overall defense ranks 22nd in the NFL in total yards allowed at 373 per game.

The Rams (3-4) are 24th in points allowed, allowing 26.3 per game.

The Seahawks (6-1) offense has impressive stats this season. Seattle averages 368.6 yards a game _ 10th in the NFL. The rushing offense is second in the league with 154.4 yards a game.

Lynch, a three-time Pro Bowler, is averaging 4.2 yards a carry. He has 578 yards and scored six touchdowns.

Since 2011, Lynch leads the NFL with 17 100-yard games.

St. Louis coach Jeff Fisher knows what Lynch can do.

"He's an outstanding back. He plays good without the ball," Fisher said. He's a good blocker. I saw a game where there's a turnover and he comes and strips defensive lineman from behind, knocks the ball out, those kinds of things. He's just an outstanding running back."

Cornerback Cortland Finnegan, who has missed the past three games with a hamstring injury but will be back this week, agreed with his coach.

"He's as advertised. He's a good as there is in the NFL," Finnegan said. "He fights for every extra yard. He's so talented. We'll have our hands full. It's going to be a challenge but as Coach Fisher says, every player has to take their level of preparation and intensity up a notch."

In his past three starts against St. Louis, Lynch has gained 115, 118 and 100 yards. Lynch has caught eight passes in those games for 59 yards.

The Rams will have to be vigilant at all times, linebacker James Laurinaitis said.

"Marshawn, in my opinion, is the toughest guy to tackle in the NFL. He runs hard every play," Laurinaitis said. "I mean even if you put eight or nine in the box, he can take it. I have a lot of respect for Marshawn. It's a huge challenge for us."

The Rams also can't forget about quarterback Russell Wilson. The second-year QB is mobile. He has rushed for 323 yards, averaging 5.6 yards per attempt.

A third-round 2012 draft pick, Wilson's on-field success last season brought his name in the same conversation as the first two overall picks, Andrew Luck and Robert Griffin III.

Defensive end Robert Quinn said the Rams won't forget about Wilson. They know how potent he can be when forced out of the pocket.

"We are aware of what Wilson can do, but we don't want to be robotic out there on our assignments," Quinn said. "We need to be disciplined. Lynch is just another challenge for us, too. You kind of smile with it. You know what you're getting and we can't let it discourage us. We're not afraid to take on anyone, of course."

The Rams' run defense showed improvement last week against Carolina. The Panthers had 38 running plays and averaged 2.7 yards a play.

Defensive coordinator Tim Walton said that showed the defense can do well against the run.

"We made some strides," Walton said. "We have to continue to get better each week."

Notes: QB Sam Bradford (knee) was on the sideline Friday watching practice. ... With Monday's game going head-to-head with Game 5 of the World Series, Fisher said the fans won't miss out. "We'll broadcast what's going on in the stadium. Whoever's there, we're going to keep them updated. We'll keep them posted on the score. We expect a great crowd."


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