ESPN asked its various NFL bloggers this week who the top rival is for each team. Paul Gutierrez (no longer the blogger, but seems to be filling in until a new one is named) offered up the San Francisco 49ers rival, and it is not surprising he went with the Seattle Seahawks. Here’s what he had to say about it:
In their glory days, the Niners would face the Cowboys seemingly every year for the NFC title. But in their most recent, ahem, daze, the 49ers have been on the losing end on both the scoreboard and in smack talk against their newest, well, biggest rivals ... the Seahawks, who have won seven of the past eight meetings, including the NFC title game in January 2014. Richard Sherman and Russell Wilson chowing down on turkey on the Levi's Stadium field following Seattle's 19-3 Thanksgiving night victory in 2014 sent a message, while Niners CEO Jed York's tweet apologizing to faithful fans for his team's showing in that game was the proverbial salt in the 49ers' wound. And isn't that what rivalries are all about?
A few years back, we would have seen several mentions of the San Francisco 49ers. Rivals could include the Seahawks, Cowboys, Rams, and at times the Packers. In this rundown of rivals, the Rams and Seahawks bloggers mention the 49ers as one-time rivals, but move past them. The Rams top rival is listed as the Seahawks, while the Seahawks top rival is listed as the Cardinals.
I think the Rams move to Los Angeles will potentially heat that rivalry up a bit, but as long as the 49ers are not any good, it’s hard to see a rivalry gaining too much traction. 49ers and Seahawks fans don’t like each other, but it’s hard to get too excited about the rivalry. If the 49ers can split with the Seahawks, that would certainly help. In the meantime, I’d imagine a lot of us are more concerned about the 49ers first just getting their act together. But hey, a win over the Seahawks would make for some fun smack talk for at least a little bit.