Happy Saturday everyone. In a mere one day, the 49ers will be facing the terrible, horrible, no good, very bad Seattle Seahawks in Seattle for the NFC championship and a Superbowl berth. This is the third time we have played Seattle this season and for a third time my twitter timeline has been blown up with fans bragging about our Superbowls. Let me get this out of the way first, I have no problem with fans bragging and talking trash about Superbowls. I get it, its an easy way to poke fun at Seattle given the difference in free space in our respective team trophy cases. I just won't be a part of it, and Its not some holier than thou "it's not nice to be mean" reason. It's just that I don't even remember the last 49ers Superbowl. I was four years old in 1995 when Steve Young and the gang destroyed the San Diego Chargers 49-26. I just find it hard to brag about something I don't remember. It's the same reason I don't list guys like Joe Montana or Ronnie Lott in my lists of favorite 49ers. It's not that I don't respect their accomplishments, but I never saw them play in 49er jerseys. Anyways, on to the game.
Naturally, because the last two games in Seattle did not end as well as we all would have liked, the 49ers have no chance in this game according to your average Seattle fan. I am not aware of any clause in the NFL rules that gives teams bonus points for consecutive dominant home wins. Unfortunately for us, from what I am hearing, It sounds like that is exactly what is going to happen. So uh, I guess we should have been more competitive last season.
In all seriousness, the most important key to this game has to be turnovers. Seattle is beatable if you consistently give them long fields to work with. The Seattle nightmare occurs when you allow the crowd noise and monstrous defense to get to you and allow them to go up by multiple scores really early. The Saints fell victim to that in their first game against Seattle and couldn't recover and make it respectable. The second time around they were able to compete, which is a positive sign as well as the way they were able to run the ball. If the 49ers can't score TDs, (and their red zone offense hasn't exactly been inspiring confidence lately) they must keep the game close by limiting Seattle's easy scores that they are accustomed to getting.
If my previous posts weren't proof enough, allow me to reiterate. I prefer being the underdog, and while I'm comfortable that the 49ers are the underdog this week, they are not enough of an underdog for my tastes. I would be in heaven if everybody and their grandmother were picking Seattle. Surprisingly, a good number of analysts are picking us to win, the narrative almost seems to be "can the road warrior 49ers pull another one off?" Does being the underdog make a difference? I doubt it, but once again, and only because I love sounding like a broken record, It makes me feel better nonetheless. To the links!
Seahawks vs. 49ers Preview:
Scot McCloughan–now a Seahawks exec–had it right about the 49ers… and had them built right when he left (Kawakami)
Richard Sherman: I won't ask to shadow any 49ers WR (NFL)
Double Coverage: 49ers at Seahawks (ESPN)
Niners' Biggest Task is to Stop Marshawn Lynch (NBC)
Experts Predict Outcome of 49ers-Seahawks Game (49ers)
Injury News and Notes:
Percy Harvin has been ruled out for Sunday, and It probably doesn't make that big of a difference. Seattle has been great without him, though I suppose if given the choice, I would rather have him be out than playing. I wonder if given the opportunity, would Seattle rather have kept their pick and money and instead, draft someone like Cordarrelle Patterson or Keenan Allen? They seem like a stubborn bunch but I imagine most honest people would rather have a cheap rookie right about now.
Heh, good luck with that one Petey. Harvin ruled out, but Carroll assures he'll be OK for Super Bowl (Barrows)
In Other News:
Before Harbaugh, Smith introduced careful QB play to 49ers (Branch)
(Audio) Ronnie Lott: 'Who's Going to Go the Hardest?' (49ers)
(Audio) Carlos Rogers: 'We Have Something They Want' (49ers)
What Makes 49ers Jim Harbaugh a Good Coach? (49ers)
NFL: 49ers Boldin, Gore fined $7,875 (Maiocco)
Thought we were done with pants-gate were you? well you were wrong.
Jim Harbaugh’s pricey pants (ESPN)
Unlike Seattle fans, Jim Harbaugh LOVES Colin Kaepernick’s latest commercial (BASG)
Jim Harbaugh final presser before heading to Seattle: On the 49ers’ final preparations, the invention of flight, and his talent for picking coaches (Kawakami)
A horse and headphones? Harbaugh loose before NFC title game (Branch)
I both love and hate these things. Taiwanese Animators make weird NFC Championship cartoon, are probably Seahawks fans (BASG)
How they got here: The complete 49ers 53-man roster (Gin)
Montana has advice for Kaepernick (ESPN)