San Francisco 49ers (10-3-1, 1st Place NFC West) at Seattle Seahawks (9-5, 2nd Place NFC West)
Stadium: CenturyLink Field
Time: 8:15 ET/ 5:15 PT
Announcers: NBC (Al Michaels play-by-play, Cris Collinsworth color commentator)
Last Meeting: San Francisco defeated the Seahawks 13-6 on Thursday Night Football in San Francisco.
The Seahawks have been rolling on both sides of the ball the past two weeks outscoring their opponents 108-17. This week their offense has a true test against the 49ers who will be pressuring Russell Wilson with Aldon Smith, however with Justin Smith expected to miss the Seahawks will be able to relax just a little bit. Expect the Seahawks to look to establish the running game as they’ve been doing throughout the year, but might focus on it a little more this week than in the past. In their previous meeting with the 49ers a Robert Turbin dropped touchdown pass turned out to be the difference of the game. Seattle will hope Sidney Rice is active and healthy as he has been developing chemistry with Wilson and helping the run game continue to be effective against opposing defenses.
Seattle’s defense have been making a havoc in the NFL giving up an average just over 11-points a game in the past 3-wins. Seattle will be without DE Jason Jones in the pass protection, but expect the Seahawks Chris Clemons to have his hands full tonight. Seattle should apply a lot of pressure on 49ers Colin Kaepernick as he will make his first start against the 12th Man. If Seattle can contain the rush and force Kaepernick to make plays himself the Seahawks should be able to let their offense win the game for them, but if they don’t control Frank Gore and apply pressure on Kaepernick then expect the 49ers offense to do their job, while their defense shows why they’re at the top of the league in defense.
Prediction- 49ers 17-14.
-Seahawks Head Coach Pete Carroll spent 1995-96 as the 49ers Defensive Coordinator before becoming the New England Patriots Head Coach. In 1995 with the 49ers he led the top ranked defense.
-Seahawks Linebackers coach Ken Norton Jr. played for the 49ers from 1994-2000, he won a Super Bowl with the 49ers in 1994. He played in 112 games with the 49ers, starting all of them with 4 INTs- 2 returned for Touchdowns. He also had 551 tackles and 5.5 sacks in 7-years with the 49ers.
-Seahawks Secondary coach Kris Richard played 2005-06 with the 49ers, in which he only appeared in one game for them.
-Seahawks S Chris Maragos was signed as an undrafted free agent by the 49ers in 2010 where he played in three games with them piling up 2 tackles.
-Seahawks OT Mike Person was a 7th-round pick by the 49ers in 2011.
-Seahawks FB Michael Robinson was a 4th-round pick by the 49ers in 2006 out of Penn St. He appeared in 62 games with them rushing for 2 Touchdowns off of 289-yards. He also had 346-yards from receptions.
-49ers Special Assistant to Head Coach Bill Nayes spent 1999-2006 with the Seattle Seahawks- a member of the 2005 NFC Conference Champions team.
-49ers Special Teams Assistant Tracy Smith spent 2011 with the Seahawks.
-49ers Offensive Line coach Mike Solari joined the 49ers after spending 2008-09 with the Seahawks as their Offensive Line coach.
Seahawks News of the Week:
-Seahawks CB Richard Sherman’s appeal case was heard Friday in regards to his potential 4-game Suspension for violating the NFL’s Substance Abuse Policy. A ruling is expected within the next 5-days of the hearing.
-Seahawks placed DE Jason Jones on season-ending IR and signed DT Hebron Fangupo.
-Seahawks SS Winston Guy’s Suspension was lifted by the commissioner.
-Russell Wilson is 5 Touchdowns away from breaking Peyton Manning’s 1998 NFL Record of Touchdown passes by a rookie QB with 26.
The three amigo’s
The saying, “Good things come in three’s” couldn’t be more right when it comes to the NFL’s Offensive Rookie of the Year award for the 2012 NFL Season.
The overall NFL fan base expected Indianapolis Colts QB Andrew Luck and Washington Redskins QB Robert Griffin III to both contend for the award. Seattle Seahawks QB Russell Wilson wasn’t even supposed to be a starter, let alone the third head of the three-headed sea monster of Rookie QBs taking over the NFL.
Wilson, a third-round draft selection by the Seahawks wasn’t expected to even be the teams opening day starter when the season kicked off, but a strong pre-season made it hard for Head Coach Pete Carroll not to start him. Wilson has rewarded Carroll for his decision and has put himself in consideration for the Rookie of the Year award.
Through 15-games it’s evident each quarterback brings different talents to the game, Luck is the more typical quarterback that’ll rack up the passing yards, while RGIII is the more mobile quarterback that uses his athleticism skills the main component of his success. Wilson on the other hand seems to have a mixture of skills making him a threat. He can scramble out of the pocket and run for days, allowing his receivers to get open or space for him to take off. He’s also shown he can pass the ball down field and be accurate with it.
One thing the three of them all have in common is the ability to win, if the season were to end today all three rookie quarterbacks would have led their teams to the playoffs. Wilson and RGIII still could possibly win their divisions as well after Week 17 comes to an end.
Wilson’s ability to give his team a chance to win is one thing that none of the other’s can say. Of Wilson’s five losses all of them have been of 7-points or less, meaning Seattle was in it until the end. Of Luck’s five losses, only one was of less than 7-points, RGIII on the other hand has been consistent with only one loss of more than 7-points.
Wilson has led his Seahawks to three victories in which less than 2-minutes were left in play. He beat the Green Bay Packers on Monday night on a Hail Mary pass to Golden Tate as time expired, beat the New England Patriots on a touchdown pass to Sidney Rice with 1:18 left to play and defeated the Chicago Bears on the road with a touchdown pass to Rice in Overtime.
More than anything though is that Wilson is 1-touchdown away from tying future Hall-of-Famer Peyton Manning rookie record for the most touchdown passes. The record is 26, Russell enters Sunday’s game with 25 going up against the St. Louis Rams.
These three rookie quarterbacks have shown they have the potential of Making the 2012 NFL Draft class elite. It might not be comparable to the 1983 of John Elway, Jim Kelly and Dan Marino (all first-round selections) when all of their careers come to an end, but it might be one of the best trio of quarterbacks taken in a draft in a long time. Even though all three weren’t selected in the first-round they’re proving the sky’s the limit for them.
Wilson’s commitment, leadership and improvement has been shown from Day 1, he arrives at the training complex on Tuesday’s, a given off day to players, at 8 a.m. sharp allowing him to dissect film and prepare for the next opponent. He also requires all rookies to be there with him.
NFL voters have no clear cut selection for NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year, had the three of them all been members of different classes they would all be able to showcase a trophy in their house.
I guess the saying all good things come in three’s is a true thing. It’s just unfortunate awards don’t come in trio’s.
By Zack Bellerdine
A song before the big game
I was on twitter late last night, like most nights, when “Duranged Pitt” sent me a link to his song “Hawk Gang” and asked if I would put it on my site.
The lyrics are relevant, it has a good beat and overall a high quality production. I recommend giving it a listen, or downloading it to play at the tailgate party before the big Sunday Night game at CenturyLink this week. I may even add it to my workout playlist.
Listen and download here.
Seahawks beat Jets 28-7
Seahawks All Access
I started this after the “Canada Day” Seattle Seahawks game but never got around to finishing it, all I managed to accomplish was the title. The reason why I chose Jon Ryan to be the subject of this piece was two fold.
First, he’s Canadian so he seemed to be the perfect subject following Canada Day at CenturyLink and second, he became this first punter since 1946 to average 60-yards per punt in a game (3 punts minimum).
When I think of punters and kickers I think of small guys. Usually they are the only people in an organization who are smaller than the teams ball boy.
Usually they are about as athletic as a program designer at Microsoft or an engineer at Boeing (had to give a little love to the local companies), but not Jon Ryan, at 6’0″ 216 pounds he is not your typical punter.
In high school Jon was Sheldon-Williams Collegiate High School’s running back, kicker and punter.
Of course, when you attend a high school that currently has 650 students enrolled, you will probably have to pick up some slack. Then, in college, he was the University of Regina’s (About the size of Eastern Washington University) leading receiver as well as handling the teams punting duties.
To further attest to his athleticism, he was fast enough to be a sprinter for Regina’s track team.
Or anyone for that matter
On Monday, my editor sent me this Seattle Seahawks pitch, asking if I would be interested in writing the piece—he already had the headline picked. I had to laugh a little bit at first because I actually had this conversation with my buddy at at a recent game.
The actual conversation wasn’t really about Marhawn Lynch versus Adrian Peterson; it wasMarshawn Lynch versus any other running back. But that is the direction I am going to take this piece.
I was looking up at the rafters, admiring all the numbers that hang from the top of the stadium, and for the first time in a very long time, I am content in the fact that every number that deserves to be up there is there.
Lynch doesn’t have his number retired in Seattle—yet.
- 12 – For the fans, though we haven’t been living up to it lately
- 80 – Steve Largent, one of the best wide receivers to ever play the game
- 71 – Walter Jones, the best offensive lineman to ever play the game
- 96 – Cortez Kennedy, the one that took far too long to be raised
So I thought to myself, “Is there a current Seahawks player who I could see earning the right to his number hanging among the greatest players in Seattle, and the entire NFL for that matter, has ever seen?”
Seahawks turn it around at home
Seattle Seahawks 30, Minnesota Vikings 20
When: 1:05 PM PST, Sunday, November 4, 2012
Where: CenturyLink Field, Seattle, Washington
At this point in the season, the Seattle Seahawks offense is a lot further along then I expected them to be.
Sunday they needed it to win.
I would still expect them to have ups and downs during the remainder of the season, but it was a lot of fun to watch them click against the Vikings.
Russell Wilson #3
Every time that Russell Wilson takes the field, he is better than his previous outing. I wish Darrell Bevell had given Wilson a chance to air the ball out a little bit during the game, but other than that, I couldn’t have asked for much more from the rookie.
Russell had a multiple touchdown game for the second week in a row. His 3 touchdowns, mark the second time he has done that this season.
Jeremy Lane #20
Where has this kid been hiding? I would have to say he is one of the best young, up and coming gunners in the NFL. Jeremy Lane really gets down the field quickly, not just because he’s fast either. Jeremy uses excellent technique off the line to get clean releases.
Seahawks beat Vikings 30-20
Growin’ up before our eyes
Last week the offense played well enough to win, but the defense gave the game away. This week the offense held the ball for 1o minutes and 53 seconds of the fourth quarter, including the final 5:27, where they converted on two 4th downs, to put the game away.
In all fairness, the defense tightened up and played great during the second half, after giving up 228-yards during the first half.
Almost 200-yards on the ground alone! The Seahawks defense held the Vikings to just 59 second half yards.
I have to be honest, there wasn’t very much energy at CenturyLink on Sunday. Half the stadium was seated during the Detlef Schrempf 12th Man introduction.
I don’t think I have ever seen the fans go through the motions like that in the 70+ games I have been to.
During the raising of the 12th Man Flag, the crowd kinda got loud, but quieted down before the opening kickoff.
There were a few plays sprinkled in when the fans got loud. There is a reason the Vikings didn’t have any false starts Sunday, we just didn’t bring it.
The run defense was terrible, especially during the first half. It can all be traced to poor execution on the part of the players.
Clinton McDonald and Alan Branch were getting blown off the line of scrimmage. Bobby Wagner kept creeping up into the trash inside. That caused him to be out of position for his gap responsibility. More. . .
Five things to watch
The Seattle Seahawks are half way through the season. So far, they have lost just about every game that I expected them to win, and won just about every game that I expected them to lose. On the bright side, they are 4-4 just like I thought when I originally looked at the schedule.
Going into the season, there was a lot of talk about how great the defense was going to be. Although they are a top 5 defense overall, they are far from elite, or great for that matter.
You cannot call yourself elite when you are the 26th worst defense in third down situation.
Over the last four games, they have been mediocre in total defense (15th in NFL), the last three games have been terrible (29th in NFL).
During the next four games, I want to see if the Seahawks defense can figure out how to protect the middle of the field. Teams have figured out that Seattle is very vulnerable to the inside passing game, especially underneath. Teams have also figured out that the Seahawks achilles heal in the running game is the inside trap.
It looks like John Moffitt will be returning to the starting lineup for week 9. Since being drafted in 2011, John has managed to start 11 out of the Seahawks 24 games. He has been injured 54.2% of the time since joining the team.