How many times could the Seattle Seahawks have lost on Monday night in San Francisco?
Oh, you thought it was rhetorical. Your bad. I’m gonna list a few. There are more. I don’t care. Who even remembers everything that happened? It was like the 6-6 tie in Arizona three seasons ago, only with heroics (!!) by Jason Myers at the end.
1. When Seattle fell behind 10-0, looking terrible in the process.
The Seahawks had five yards of offense in the first quarter. The 49ers? 118. Capped by a touchdown that seemed much more consequential at the time.
Seattle spent the first seven drives going nowhere at all, and fast, accumulating two punts and fumbling the ball away twice. The Seahawks trailed by two scores early, had no rhythm, and... didn’t lose. Apologies if you haven’t watched the game yet and are just figuring it out.
2. When Jamar Taylor’s early penalty — deserved or not — wiped out an interception by Shaquill Griffin.
What does Taylor do? Only come up later with a giant pass deflection, on third down in the fourth quarter, to preserve an 11-point lead. Pity this didn’t matter more, because it was a hell of a play at the right time.
The unsung Jamar Taylor denies a first down pic.twitter.com/4g5I6qAX9y— John Fraley (@johndavidfraley) November 12, 2019
3. When the 49ers threated to wrest control away with ANOTHER fluky defensive score.
We don’t need to watch the Russell-Wilson-Germain-Ifedi-accidental-handoff-oh-hey-now-they’re-in-the-end-zone-celebrating sequence again. It was the stupidest touchdown of the year, and we’ve some some pretty stupid ones already.
Did anyone mention? The Seahawks had to shake off a non-call that would have negated the score.
Ok yeah they got his facemask too lol pic.twitter.com/c5o5ZTj3iV— new-age analytical (@benbbaldwin) November 12, 2019
In the end it didn’t matter, because the Seahawks didn’t let it matter, and they shook it off better than Taylor Swift. By the way, Seattle’s given up five defensive or special teams touchdowns. That’s the most in the league. Could we not, anymore?
4. When all the potential picks all bounced the wrong way too.
Jimmy Garoppolo’s errant, imprecise, oft-tipped passes hit four different Seahawks in the hands at four different times in the fourth quarter and overtime, and four times the ball bounced to the turf. If the near-misses were deflating to the wolf-grey-clad visitors, it didn’t show, nor did it make much of an impact in the end.
It seems that Pete Carroll teams aren’t much for getting down on themselves. When nothing went right for the Seahawks for long stretches Monday night, they dusted themselves off and prepared for the next play. We can shit on Carroll all we want for some of the kitschy, cheesy, predictable things he says, for the cliches he inculcates into anyone who will listen or has to listen — but the truth is that no Seahawks team prior to 2010 ever looked this even-keeled when poop hit the fan.
5. When the 49ers tied it at 0:00 of the fourth.
Seattle just went out and stopped them in overtime, twice, that’s all, only that. San Francisco ran 10 plays for 20 yards in the extra period. If the Niners had any momentum from their fourth-quarter comeback, then their successful last-second kick, it gave them no advantage whatsoever.
6. When the rare Russell Wilson interception was returned to midfield.
Wilson’s second pick of the season, when the Seahawks were knocking on the door of victory, 19 yards away from another tell-your-grandkids overtime drive, frighteningly set the 49ers up near midfield because of the huge return. Not a great time to underthrow your All-Pro Touchdown Machine, Jacob Hollister.
INTERCEPTED!— NFL (@NFL) November 12, 2019
The @49ers pick it off and return it across the 50! #GoNiners @DreGreenlaw
: #SEAvsSF on ESPN
: NFL app // Yahoo Sports app
Watch free on mobile: https://t.co/SlB0VGjZhH pic.twitter.com/9n0zwDex9r
Seattle bent, but on 2nd and 2 at their own 30 they turned Raheem Mostert away for no gain. On 3rd and 2 they stopped him again short of the marker, and the SF field goal unit trotted out for a doomed 47-yarder.
7. When Tyler Lockett went out with an injury about which we can be at least a little nervous.
Postgame, Carroll uncharacteristically called his star receiver’s leg contusion and swelling “a pretty severe situation.” All Wilson went and did afterward is target Josh Gordon, yes, that Josh Gordon, the legendary Seahawk, for two crucial third-down conversions. The first set up Myers’ game-tying kick in regulation, and the second came at Richard Sherman’s expense on the opening drive of overtime.
Those were Gordon’s only two targets. Credit Wilson with being ready to find a new safety valve on the fly. Resilient, again.
8. When instead of a magical scramble setting up 3rd and 7, the officials (who had a bad day for both teams, that favorable spot in point 6. was brutal) decided Seattle should face 3rd and 16 instead.
Pete Carroll wasn't pleased that this play was blown dead.— Joe Fann (@Joe_Fann) November 12, 2019
"It's Russ. You've got to let him make the magic that he makes. I don't know. I know they're trying to protect him. That's the reason why they were a little bit quick with that whistle right there, but, let them play." pic.twitter.com/nKlbmEN6mk
Wilson isn’t in anyone’s grasp long enough for the whistle to be thought about being blown. Watch again in real time, how he ducks out of contact within a second. It’s another ridiculous call in a game full of them.
Malik Turner caught a 28-yard heave on the next snap. The Seahawks are never out of a game, or a drive, or a play. In part because they won’t let themselves be.
9. When Michael Dickson punted, and poorly at that, WITH 1:56 LEFT IN OVERTIME.
Dickson’s 35-yard boot set the 49ers up at their own 20 with a chance for the hosts to get into field goal position again. Only Griffin had a better idea. It’s third down, and Deebo Samuel has a step on the cornerback.
10. Jason Myers, unlikely hero.
Lastly, when the Seattle kicker, who shanked two high-percentage field goals in Week 9, who came in 3-of-8 from beyond 40 yards, overcame whatever demons were haunting him to make the necessary go-ahead kick in regulation, and then the game-winner on the final play of overtime. With everything that happened Monday night, it’s difficult to call one kick the play of the game, but there is no begrudging this man his exuberant celebration. He earned it.
CELEBRATE GOOD TIMES COME ON! pic.twitter.com/sfcDGJmxHF— John Fraley (@johndavidfraley) November 12, 2019
The Seattle Seahawks, an 8-2 football team, can take a punch like Joe Frazier and can deliver one like Muhammad Ali. (What? I’m old. Deal with it.) Now they get to use their bye week to not take any punches whatsoever, rest, and prepare for the final six games of the season, only half a game out of first place, unbeaten in the division, with all of the goals you could possibly want still there for the taking. The Seahawks will see these Niners again, knowing they took Garoppolo’s, Nick Bosa’s, and Mike Shanahan’s best hits and came out on top. Exactly like you’d expect from the most resilient team in the NFL.