The Seattle Seahawks did their best to help us forget last week’s game ever happened, bouncing back to the tune of a 37-18 win over the San Francisco 49ers. A dominating performance from the start, highlighted by Christine Michael’s 41-yard touchdown run on just the game’s third play from scrimmage. The 49ers never looked to be a threat on either side of the ball in a game that was comfortably won, although the good feelings will have to wait. Russell Wilson left the game in the third quarter after suffering a knee injury. The severity of the injury is being first reported as a sprained MCL, but it looked terrible on first viewing (and repeated viewings after that). The biannual celebrations after beating the 49ers will be paused until Wilson’s injury status becomes clearer, but until then there are some talking points.
The aforementioned Michael was so damn good today. Running between the tackles, bouncing outside, spinning 49ers defenders out of their shoes and breaking long runs off like nothing, that’s The Awakened Michael that Seahawks fans can look forward to every week. Two touchdowns and should’ve had a receiving score as well were it not for a misplaced Boykin pass, the Seahawks backfield will be even more nasty once Thomas Rawls gets back.
I don’t want to spend too much time on the offensive line here – only about as long as they give Wilson in the pocket – but it was actually encouraging to see another relatively steady performance from Justin Britt. The 49ers have a good amount of talent on their defensive line, and if the guys inside for them are anything, it’s powerful. Britt spent the first two years of his career being bullied in the trenches and that wasn’t the case today.
Amongst all the frustration stemming from last week was some misguided criticism towards Jimmy Graham, despite the fact that Graham is just ten months removed from a brutal knee injury. In week one, he played 21% of the snaps. In week two, it was 82%. Bringing him along slowly was always going to be the plan, and it seems as if the leash came off on Sunday. Graham was boxing defenders out on intermediate throws, stealing the ball away from a defender on a deep ball, and being the huge end zone target he’s capable of being on the way to a six-catch, 100-yard performance. Great to see him get a touchdown as a reward for all that hard work over the past ten months.
Both KJ Wright and Bobby Wagner started the year playing with their hair on fire and it continued today. Wright in particular was absolutely outstanding against the run early on as the 49ers tried to establish a ground game, blowing up everything towards the sideline.
For all the talk surrounding the SAM linebacker spot this summer, it sure doesn’t matter who they trot out there. For the most part it was Kam Chancellor coming down and setting the edge, and doing a helluva job doing so. Mike Morgan played 52% of snaps in week two, up from the 19% he played in week one. The snap counts aren’t out at the time of writing, but it seems as though Morgan was back down to that 10-20 snaps range against the 49ers.
It was good to see the defense playing mean again. They’ve absolutely held up their end through three weeks, but that intimidating, aggressive play hasn’t been as prevalent. That changed against the 49ers with Wagner, DeShawn Shead and Chancellor all laying the wood throughout the game. Chancellor took two souls on Sunday, continuing his tradition against the 49ers.
With Rawls and CJ Prosise out with injury, Alex Collins saw more touches than he had in the two previous weeks. Four carries and two catches and looked good when he got going. There were a couple instances when you would like him to just get up field, but I do believe that Seattle has (another) good one in Collins.
Trevone Boykin got a little over a quarter following Wilson’s exit, and looked better than you would think a rookie free agent taking his first career snaps would look. There were some misfires but overall a composed, controlled performance. If Wilson does miss time with his injury, I think the team will be comfortable rolling with Boykin, assuming it’s for a short time.
Finally; boy was it ever a relief to get that first turnover! Bobby Wagner came up with the interception that will hopefully open up the flood gates. The New York Jets are up next, and Ryan Fitzpatrick threw six interceptions on Sunday, so, you do the math. For some reason I have this feeling that the Seahawks usually show up to play for games at Metlife Stadium in New York.
Back on the winning track, getting healthier and hopefully avoided a serious injury with Wilson. A good Sunday for Seattle, and they’ll try to keep rolling next Sunday at 10 AM in New York.