49ers v Seahawks

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It’s literally a game of inches for the 49ers as they beat the Seahawks 26-21

ESPN Radio
December 30, 2019 - 12:12 pm

By Charlie O. Mallonee @Charlieo1320

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We love to talk about football being a game of inches, but seldom do we really have concrete examples of that fact. On Sunday night in Seattle, fans saw that axiom play out in the most dramatic way possible.

With just 12-seconds remaining in the game, the Seahawks had the ball fourth and five at the 49ers five-yard line. Working out of the shotgun, Russell Wilson threw a short pass up the middle to his TE Jacob Hollister who caught the ball and was hit immediately by Niners LB Dre Greenlaw who kept Hollister from breaking the plane of the goal line.

The officials had to defer to the video officials in New York to confirm that Hollister did not break the plane and that the ball should belong to the 49ers with nine-seconds left on the clock. The video review confirmed the call on the field and San Francisco took over on downs. Jimmy Garoppolo ran the ball up the middle to run out the clock to give his team the 26-21 victory.

This was the first time the 49ers (13-3) had won a game in Seattle since Christmas Eve 2011. It is also the most important win of the Kyle Shanahan – John Lynch rebuilding effort that began three years ago.

The 49ers earn a bye

The victory made the Niners the number one seed in the NFC Playoffs. That means they will not have to play again until January 11. The 49ers “bye week” was all the way back on September 29th (NFL Week Four). They are a team that is bruised, beat up and battered. The Niners – especially their defense – really need some time to heal, rest and recuperate. The win on Sunday night will allow them to do just that.

The 49ers next game will be against the lowest seed left in the NFC Playoffs at Levi’s Stadium on Saturday, January 11. The kickoff will be at 1:35 PST.

Stars of the game

San Francisco

  • Deebo Samuel was targeted five times and made five receptions good for 102 yards. The wide receiver also rushed the ball twice and scored one touchdown on the ground for the Niners.
  • Raheem Mostert carried the ball 10 times for 57 yards and punched it into the end zone two times. He also made a reception good for 16 yards.

Run it in Raheem -- @snfonnbc

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  • George Kittle was a factor for the Niners. He was targeted seven times and he made seven receptions good for 86 yards. He was the guy who kept drives alive.


  • Marshawn Lynch “Beast Mode” was signed out of retirement and played very well. Lynch carried the ball 12 times for 34 yards and one TD,
  • Travis Homer ran the ball the 10 times and gained 62 yards.
  • DK Metcalf caught six of 12 targets good for 81 yards and one touchdown.
  • Tyler Lockett was targeted seven times and made six receptions for 51 yards and one TD.

QB comparison

  • Jimmy Garoppolo completed 18 of 22 passing attempts good for 285 yards and passer rating of 118.8. He was sacked twice for a total loss of 15 yards. “Jimmy G” did not have a passing TD, but he did his job and he came away with another W.
  • Russell Wilson threw 40 passes and completed 25 of those throws. He picked up 233 yards in the air for the Seahawks and scored two passing TD’s. His passer rating was 95.1.


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Gould is gold again

Robbie Gould was 2-for-2 in the field goal department on Sunday night. The NFC Special Team’s Player of the Week kicked field goals of 47 yards and 30 yards in the Niners victory on Sunday night.

The Seahawks did not have a field goal attempt in the contest.

Coaches views on the game

Kyle Shanahan on the victory: “I feel real good about it. We worked for this the whole year. The goal going in was just to get into the tournament. To get in there with the number one seed is very good. We were going to be ready to deal with whatever we had to tomorrow, whether we had to go play three games. I know we are much happier that we can stay home now and that your two games away from the big one. We are going to enjoy this bye week. I’m very proud of the guys. We have had to win a lot of different ways this year. I feel like we have done it every way possible and then we find a new way to do it. I wish it would not have been that close at the end. It doesn’t matter now. I’m pumped how they finished it.”

Pete Carroll on the loss: “Well as we have kind of grown to understand about our team, we’re never out. We didn’t play well in the first half, and just couldn’t get going at all. We really felt fortunate to be at 13-zip. Then, our guys just did what they do, and found a way to get back and get rolling. We didn’t dominate the second half, but we certainly put ourselves in position to win a championship right there. It was a fantastic effort by the whole team, highlighted I think by Russ and the offense and the playmaking and the throwing and the catching, and the protection. We got sacked one time by that crew tonight. We had the opportunities; it was there in front of us. It was, like, a perfect win. To me, it was a perfect way to win the championship, and unfortunately it just came up short by a couple inches. It was an amazing effort, it was an amazing regular season. I don’t know how we could ask for much more drama. We already have to go, and get rolling, looking ahead. We play Sunday in Philly, and we have to go get that in order and get working in that direction. How could you not be proud of the way these guys played. How could you not? That was fantastic, to put us in position to win that football game after all that. But, it was no surprise either. This was the way we were going to win a division championship. A couple things happened, and it didn’t quite work out. So, we have to move on; we gotta go.”

Winner, winner, chicken dinner

Did you beat the oddsmakers?

  • The 49ers were the favorites – 3.5 points and won by five points. If you took the Niners and the points, cash that ticket.
  • The Over/Under: If you got in early, the O/U was 46 points at some books, so cash that ticket. As game time approached, the O/U jumped to 47 to 47.5 depending on where you wagered which means you pushed or no “chicken” for you!
  • If you took San Francisco on the Money Line (and, why did you since you had lay down $175 to win $100?), proceed to the pay window.

Seattle pack your bags

The Seahawks (11-5) travel to the “City of Brotherly Love” to face the Philadelphia Eagles (9-7) in the late game on Sunday. The sports book consensus numbers have Seattle as the favorite -1.5 points. The Over/Under is set at 46. Remember that wagering lines are dynamic and change constantly depending on the betting action and changes with player availability.

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