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49ers did make second half adjustments, but you may have been blinded by the score

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It is difficult to do, but if you take a look at the 49ers stats in the second half alone, you can see some positives

NFL: San Francisco 49ers at Seattle Seahawks Troy Wayrynen-USA TODAY Sports

The Seattle Seahawks dominated the San Francisco 49ers in Week 3, and the scoreboard makes that very clear. However, if you take the first half scores away, you can actually see that there were some successful second half adjustments that worked. Some, of course, will make the argument that San Francisco put up points only during garbage time but there are a few things to take into account, notably that the Seattle defensive starters remained in the game until the bitter end.

A positive note about the 49ers: the players were fighting until the clock read all zeroes. Carlos Hyde wanted to stay in the game and keep playing while head coach Chip Kelly was calculating two point conversions to make it a three score game because “You never know.”

Seattle’s starters also played through the entire game according to their snap counts. Kam Cancellor, Earl Thomas, Richard Sherman, Bobby Wagner, K.J. Wright and DeShawn Shead played 100 percent of all defensive plays. The other key defensive players were pretty close to that with Michael Bennett at 95 percent, Cliff Avril at 81 percent and Jeremy Lane at 77 percent of defensive plays. According to a few reporters that cover the Seahawks, players appeared to have walked off of the field upset about the late run by the 49ers and it is reflected in their post game statements.

Cliff Avril

That shows you the passion we have about some of the stuff we do out there. We gave up too many points at the end. That’s not our type of football. That’s not what we do. That’s not what we pride ourselves on and that’s good.

Kam Chancellor

Yeah, I don’t think we finished well. We held them to three for the majority of the game. I think we should have finished it that way, at least six after the interception that Boykin threw, but I feel like we should have kept them down. You’ve got to do the right thing all game. You can’t make up things. You can’t be off key or do something different just because of what the score is. That’s the hard thing about being disciplined and doing then right thing. It’s hard to do the right thing all the time. We’ve just got to do the right thing all the time, until the end.

Pete Carroll

It was 130 yards until their last two drives. I know our guys are upset because that’s not the way they want to finish a game.

Even Earl Thomas mentioned the need to finish better. Were these thoughts warranted? Here are a few stats to consider before making your decision:

Seattle first half:

  • 11 first downs
  • 311 yards
  • 24 points
  • 35 offensive plays
  • 7 drives

49ers first half:

  • 4 first downs
  • 102 yards
  • 3 points
  • 24 offensive plays
  • 6 drives

The first half, particularly the first few minutes, were extremely lopsided, there’s no argument there. In the third quarter, however, the defense adjusted and only allowed 38 yards of total offense by Seattle. Unfortunately, the offense wasn’t able to match the improvement in performance while the defense kept Seattle out of the end zone, allowing only two field goals.

Seattle third quarter:

  • 3 first downs
  • 38 yards
  • 6 points
  • 17 offensive plays
  • 3 drives

49ers third quarter:

  • 1 first down
  • 30 yards
  • 0 points
  • 13 offensive plays
  • 4 drives

In the fourth quarter, the offense finally started to get things going and the defense still had a good performance. They allowed one touchdown but only 69 yards of offense by Seattle.

Seattle fourth quarter:

  • 4 first downs
  • 69 yards
  • 7 points
  • 13 offensive plays
  • 3 drives

49ers fourth quarter

  • 7 first downs
  • 122 yards
  • 15 points
  • 19 offensive plays
  • 2 drives

The 49ers defense held Seattle to 107 yards in the second half, which would be a great stat for any half of a football game for a defense. Yes, Seattle went through a QB change due to injury in the third quarter, which may have altered the score a bit, but the defense brought the Seattle yards per play average down from 8.88 in the first half to 4.45 in the second half. The 49ers average went from 4.25 in the first half to 4.75 in the second half with a 6.42 in the 4th quarter. The game still felt like a blowout but maybe this breakdown will help keep hope alive, at least just a little bit.