I was reading some forums and stuff the other day, and rumor has it that the Seahawks are still in the middle of a football season. Say whaaat? I doubt there's anything to it, but, on the off-chance there is, I figured I might as well prepare for the "upcoming game" against the "49ers."
The Seahawks lost to the 49ers in Week 2 in what could be considered a pivotal game for this season. What if we had started out 2-0? What if Hasselbeck hadn't missed 2.5 games? I think we can agree that if Hasselbeck starts the Bears game, we win that one (the NFL has said that we should've won it anyway, in so many words). Suddenly, the Seahawks are 3-0 heading into Indianapolis. Lose that, crush the Jags and you're at home against the Cardinals at 4-1. That, my friends, is how it could have been.
But then, it wasn't.
The Hawks lost that game on two Frank Gore runs. The injury situation was a big part of that, but gap control played a bigger factor. Would they have been broken with Mebane, Tatupu and Hill in there? Doubtful, but the coaches should've had their replacements playing at the same level. That's how championship teams play, ask Mike McKenzie.
The 49ers started out hot with a ton of momentum in the NFC West. They took out the reigning NFC champs in week one and the Hawks in week 2. Then they started losing and of late they've mostly stunk up the joint. They enter the week at 5-6 after a surprising victory over the Jags who are proving that it is hard to play after a 6 hour plane ride (why does that sound familiar...?).
So now two underachieving teams enter, one underachieving team leaves with a slightly higher level of achievement. The game is crucial for the 49ers if they wish to stay within striking distance of the Cardinals. The Cards (7-5) play the Vikings (10-1) this week; a loss drops them to 7-5 and, in the case of a 49ers win, the two teams would play in Week 14 for a potential tie at 7-6, with the 49ers holding a tie breaker. From there, it is likely that both teams would win 2 of their last 3, so the 49ers would be headed to the Playoffs. The point? The 49ers want, and need, this game.
But the Seahawks are playing for Ruskell. He told the players today to go out and beat the 49ers, and if there is any character, any fight, any... anything in this team, you had better believe they are going to do it. A loss on Sunday will go a long way to proving that this team is precisely who the rest of the NFL thinks they are: bad.