Whew! Game ball to the 49er offensive line and Frank Gore.
With the season on the brink of slipping away, the 49ers came out in the second half Thursday night, awoke from the fog that marked their first half efforts, and absolutely stuffed the Seattle Seahawks. The 49er defense threw a shutout and the offense threw Frank Gore straight down the throats of the Seahawks. It wasn’t pretty, but it was quite manly mannish. And, lest we forget, a W is a W. And a W against Pete Carroll is sweet as sweet can be.
Someone must have slapped some sense into OC Greg Roman during halftime. With our WRs constantly blanketed by the Seattle secondary, Roman wisely discarded the deep passing game (which was a complete flop) and decided to take what the defense was giving. Which was wide open spaces in the short middle, perfect for dump off passes to Gore that ate up chunks of clock-grinding yardage.
But what took the heart out of Seattle was Gore’s running, behind the dominant effort of the 49ers’ massive O-line. Averaging a whopping 8.2 yards per carry, Gore pounded away, tossing in runs of 37, 20, and 18 yards, and completely dismantling the vaunted run-stopping Seattle defense.
The NFC West has turned into the old NFC “Black and Blue” North division. All four NFC West defenses are ranked in the top ten. The division has beaten Aaron Rodgers (twice), Tony Romo, Cam Newton, Tom Brady (twice), and Matt Stafford.
It’ll be eleven days till the team resumes action, on the road against the Cardinals. It would be nice if Roman figured out a way to get Vernon Davis back into the passing game. He was a non-factor against the Giants and had ZERO catches against the Seahawks. If Roman needs help in figuring it out, I’m sure the blogosphere will have plenty of suggestions during this idle time.
The game may have been ugly, but it definitely had edge of your seat appeal. In this sort of heavyweight slugfest, you can sense that the game is going to turn on one big play or one crucial drive. At halftime, it did not look like the 49ers were going to be the team that provided that game changing moment. They looked like a team that was going to be ground into the turf, just like they had been against the Giants. Kudos to the boys in red and gold. They located their guts at halftime and took control of the game.
The Seattle Hail Mary offense did not show up. In fact, it died in its own end zone at game’s end, 100 long, lonely yards away from the 49er end zone. And that’s where we’ll leave it. With Pete Carroll not jumping for joy, but fighting back despair as he toddled out to mid-field for his third straight NFL loser’s handshake with his nemesis, Jim Harbaugh. Cheer up, Pete. Maybe you’ll finally win one in Seattle later in the year. Or maybe not.