Santa Clara, CA – It’s time to push the panic button. The 49ers will now have to win their remaining four games to get a chance to head back to the playoffs. The Seattle Seahawks put themselves in a better position for the playoff race after defeating San Francisco 19-3. While the 49ers defense held the Seahawks to four field goals, the offense left the field clueless as to why things aren’t clicking they way they should.
Colin Kaepernick looked completely lost as he threw two interceptions and overthrew the ball out of bounds multiple times. The once unpredictable quarterback is now an open book. Richard Sherman’s coverage on the San Francisco receivers was so good, Kaepernick kept throwing to him. Sherman almost recorded three picks but dropped one. His defense was astounding along with the rest Seattles defense.
“There was an opponent [Kaepernick] who said he would throw it to the open man,” said Sherman. “He didn’t care who was out there [in coverage]. I was the open man.”
“They are a good defense, they play fast, they play physical,” Kaepernick said. “We just have to be able to make plays.”
Unfortunately, the 49ers aren’t in a great position, they face the Oakland Raiders next week and then return to CentruyLink Field for a rematch with the Seahawks. San Francisco has the same dominant offense they had last season and even added more depth in the offseason creating more options. But there’s something missing. The offensive challenges still remain with converting on third downs and getting into the red zone.
The first quarter got off to a bad start when the 49ers lost two key players early. WR Michael Crabtree left the game before returning with a rib injury. And LDT Ray McDonald left with a finger injury before returning. Sherman made Kaepernick’s life difficult, his first interception was an intended pass for WR Brandon Lloyd, that setup Russell Wilson’s short pass to a wide open Robert Turbin for a 13-yard touchdown.
“I really don’t know what it is,” said RB Frank Gore. Things just aren’t happening for us out there. I don’t know what it is.”
Things didn’t get any better in the second quarter as the defense could not contain Turbin who stayed open. Wilson eluded defenders as he threw another shotgun pass to Doug Baldwin for 63-yards. Steve Hauschka followed with two field goals, 21-yards and 36-yards despite San Francisco’s defensive efforts to force a field goal, Seattle ended the half with a 13-0 lead.
Kaepernick finished 16 of 29 for 121 yards and had two interceptions. He was seven of his first sixteen passes and clearly had the worst game of his career. The 49ers were boo’d while leaving the field, Kaepernick missed many of his receivers who were in situations to advance the ball. His decision to scramble over wide-open check downs or missed reads are now a concern moving forward because San Francisco’s offense hasn’t been its best this season.
“They were bad throws,” Kaepernick said referring to Sherman being his open man. “Our receivers won. I didn’t make the throw on those. Those were my fault.”
The 49ers three-game winning streak ended and now they face a tough road ahead as Seattle moves closer to the NFC West leading Arizona Cardinals who are 9-2 and leads their division. When they return to Seattle in the upcoming weeks, its been a proven fact that they haven’t won in that stadium since 2011. But head coach Jim Harbaugh seems more determine in stating his team will be ready when they return next week.
“We need to come back and win them all,” said Harbaugh.