The Seattle Seahawks (10-4) knocked its arch-rival San Francisco 49ers (7-7) of the NFL playoff race with a 17-7 victory in Seattle, Wash. on Sunday. Seattle scored two touchdowns in the fourth quarter to take the lead, and put the game away. This loss probably spells the end of the Jim Harbaugh era in San Francisco, as the Niners have yet to capture a Super Bowl trophy during his time with the franchise.
Rookie wide receiver Paul Richardson scored the first touchdown of his career to put the Seahawks up 17-7 with 13:20 left in the game. Richardson was streaking up the right hash marks, which is where quarterback Russell Wilson found him for the 10-yard touchdown. San Francisco’s defense was in zone coverage, and Wilson picked them apart.
Earlier in the game, the Seahawks offense struggled to get any traction against the stout 49ers front seven. But Marshawn Lynch eventually put together a solid performance as he averaged 4.3 yards per carry. While Lynch didn’t score a touchdown, he did play a crucial part in opening up the offensive playbook late in the game. His physical style of running wore down the Niners defense over his 21 carries.
Wide receiver Jermaine Kearse was the leading receiver for Wilson during Sunday’s game, as he caught five passes for 78 yards — an average of 15.6 yards per catch. Kearse was also Wilson’s top target during this game, as he caught 41.6% of the quarterback’s completed passes during the game.
This win was a big deal for the Seahawks as it officially knocked the 49ers out of the playoff hunt, while keeping the Seahawks in the race for the No. 1 seed on the NFC side of the bracket. All Seattle needs to do is win out to capture the divisional crown, and home field advantage; as the Seahawks now hold the tie breakers over Dallas…despite the loss early in the season. For a team that struggled to find its identity earlier this year, the Seahawks still could end up with home field advantage…and that’s remarkable.