Barely scraping a 19-17 win at home against the Seattle Seahawks probably won’t be enough for the San Francisco 49ers to win the division, but it certainly keeps them in prime position to win one of the wild card playoff spots, avoiding a loss that would have made things very complicated.
Like most games on a drama filled Sunday afternoon, it came down to a huge play in the very last seconds of the game. Frank Gore wasn’t having the easiest of time against a defense he usually struggles against. But out of nowhere he busted out on a 51-yard run, helping the 49ers set up a 22-yard field goal to give them the two point lead with 26 seconds left in the game. Russell Wilson went for a desperate pass and got intercepted, and so the game was over.
That run by Gore changed the perception of the game, and of the work done by the Sehawks defense, once again making the 49ers look a lot less tough than they usually are, and Colin Kaepernick quite ordinary. The problem was that Russell Wilson played a lot worse than what he usually gives on the field.
Kaepernick finished with 15-of-29 for 175 yards, with one touchdown and one interception. All the talk about receivers and how he doesn’t have his full weapons list turned out to be rubbish. Kaepernick is good against weak teams, and pretty bad when there’s a strong defense to face. He had Michael Crabtree, Vernon Davis and Anquan Boldin to throw to. Too many games this season prove he simply isn’t that good of a quarterback, at the moment at least.
Wilson was pretty much the same: 15-of-25 for 199 yards, one touchdown and an interception. The problem for the Seahawks was too many drives without getting anything, while the 49ers, opening the game with two field goals, managed to squeeze out something, getting just a little bit more from their running game, finishing with 77 yards more than the Seahawks, who got 72 yards from Marshawn Lynch and that was it.
One of the problems the 49ers caused for Wilson was in deep throws. The secondary stepped up, and limited Wilson to only 2-of-8 for 68 yards, a touchdown and an interception on throws deeper than 10 yards downfield. They did a good job in covering Luke Willson, the only guy the quarterback was able to get the ball consistently to.
In a rivalry that’s been going back and forth over the last couple of years, this win doesn’t erase the fact that the Seahawks destroyed the 49ers when the two teams played in Seattle, and were one blown tackling assignment away from sweeping the series this season. The 49ers didn’t erase that feeling, but got the job done of being close to accomplishing their own little goals – no one is thinking about making the Super Bowl again. With all the weaknesses exposed this season, just reaching the playoffs seems something everyone will be happy with at his point.