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As we head into tomorrow's must-win affair, I thought it would be interesting to look back at what I would imagine is a somewhat rare performance in the redzone by the Jacksonville Jaguars. The Jaguars entered the red zone four times against the 49ers and came away with zero touchdowns. While many teams will go 0-fer in the red zone, the Jaguars also managed to only come away with a single field goal. On the other three possessions, David Garrard fumbled twice and Josh Scobee missed a 21 yard field goal. I wonder how often we'll see that kind of ineptitude inside the red zone by an opposing offense?
Coming out of that game, the 49ers continue to put together an impressive red zone resume. While they rank 17th against the rush in the red zone, the 49ers are #1 against the pass and #2 overall. That pass number (-120.7%) is even more impressive when compared to other teams. New Orleans is a close second at -117.1%, but then the #3 team, the Oakland Raiders, is half the 49ers at -60.4%.
Any thoughts as to why the 49ers have been so solid against the pass in the red zone? Maybe it's just the fact that they've been "relatively" weak against the run, and teams elect to run the ball in from down close. Of course, the RZ run defense is at 1.3%, so it's not like they're completely awful by any stretch.
And so the 49ers head into tomorrow's game against a Seattle offense that is atrocious passing in the red zone, but is #3 in rushing offense in the red zone. It will be interesting to see how that is affected with Julius Jones in the starting lineup instead of Justin Forsett. And if Forsett is limited or inactive with the quad injury, how will that affect the Seahawks red zone performance? The 49ers, after all, employ a bend but don't break defense that seems to consistently allow teams to drive a decent distance before stiffening up. I've found the Seahawks to be quite the conundrum this season. On the one hand, they've been pretty poor a good chunk of the time and should be beat-able. On the other hand, I'm convinced they're going to catch the 49ers with their pants down and that scares the crap out of me given the stakes of this game.