Sunday, September 12, 2010

Seahawks win season opener 31-6 over 49ers

By Kshell

The Seattle Seahawks behind Matt Hasselbeck and timely interceptions defeated the 49ers 31-6 at Qwest Field. The Seahawks who made more moves than any other NFL team in the past season debut 27 new players to the roster. Nobody knew what to expect from the Seahawks who were supposed to be in a rebuilding season. Well someone must have forgot to tell that to Pete Carroll and company.

Seattle got off to a horrible start. Matt Hasselbeck throws an interception on his first possesion and I'm sure some in the stands were thinking put in Whitehurst. The 49ers then went down the field for a touchdown. Pete Carroll challenged the catch and was right Morgan did not have two feet in bounds. So the 49ers settled for a field goal to make the game 3-0. At the end of the first quarter the Seahawks had just 9 yards of offense while Alex Smith was 9 for 10 passing.

In the 2nd quarter is when the game changed dramatically. The 49ers had the ball inside the 10 yard two times and scord just 3 more points. The Seahawks who have been stuffing Frank Gore all game long. Gore was held to 38 yards on 17 carries(2.2 YPC). The 49ers despite drafting two offenslve lineman in the first round couldn't pick up those key 3rd and shorts. On 4th and 1 the 49ers called a beautiful play action pass which was wide open only Smith threw the ball high. Had Smith completed that pass the 49ers take a 10-0 lead. Later in the 2nd quarter up 3-0 the 49ers had the ball on the 2 yard line and were facing a 4th and 1 but a delay of game penalty so the 49ers had to settle for a field goal. The 49ers had the ball three times inside the 10 yard line and came away with just 6 points.

Momentum had swung Seattle's way. The 49ers had given the Seahawks and the 12th man life. Hasselbeck started to hit some passes as Seattle determined to ditch the running game. Hasselbeck would hit Mike Williams for a key 35 yard pass which was Williams first NFL catch since 2007. Williams who had played under Carroll is looking to make a comeback in the NFL. Hasselbeck kept the ball on a boot leg and ran it in for a 1 yard run that won't make fans think he was Michael Vick. It still counts the same.

The very next possesion Alex Smith threw an interception to Jordan "Big Play Babs" Babineaux who returned the pass 20 yards. Babineaux who was cut earlier this week then resigned only to take a pay cut had a very effective game collecting 8 tackles along with that interception. Hasselbeck then hit 2nd year wide receiver Deon Butler for a 13 yard touchdown pass. That was Butlers first career touchdown. The Seahawks despite being dominated at halftime led 14-6.

The second half the Seahawks continued that momentum with Alex Smith throwing another interception to Marcus Trufant. Trufant ran the interception 32 yards for a touchdown. The Seahawks get another stop on the 49ers and get the ball back. Hasselbeck was feeling it at one time going 10 of 11. He hit Deion Branch for a 3 yard touchdown pass. Hasselbeck showing everyone he still is the best quarterback in the division.

The Seahawks had lead at the end of the third quarter despite their leading rusher being Julius Jones with 8 yards rushing. Thats what happens when you have a quarterback of Hasselbecks calibar. Hasselbeck finished the day going 18 of 23 for 170 yards passing, 2 touchdowns and another touchdown rushing. His counterpart Alex Smith entering his 6th season with the team was 26 of 45 passing for 225 yards and 2 interceptions.

At the end of the day the Seahawks were victorious over the 49ers who many had predicted to win the division. The Seahawks overcame a bad start and with a swarming defense handed Pete Carroll his first NFL win since 1999.


- The Seahawks are going to be a hard team to run on. In preseason they had success against Chris Johnson and Adrian Peterson. Today they limited Frank Gore to just 37 yards rushing and 2.2 YPC. The defense starts basically three defensive tackles in Red Bryant at defensive end, Brandon Mebane and Collin Cole. With LeRoy Hill being suspended the Seahawks would often play Tatupu and Hawthorne at the same time. If the Hawks continue to put teams in 3rd and long situations they should find success.

- Matt Hasselbeck when given time is still the best quarterback in the division. Alex Smith is not ready to take that from him. In fact that was the difference in the game. Both teams stopped the run and it was up to which quarterback could lead his team down the field. Hasselbeck in the redzone threw for two touchdowns and ran for one. Alex Smith threw one interception that led to a touchdown, another that was ran back for a touchdown and overthrew a fullback who was wide open near the goal line.

- Golden Tate the talented 2nd round pick wasn't even active for the roster. He couldn't crack the 45 man lineup. Apparently Williams, Branch and Butler are ahead of him. Obomanu was the 4th receiver due to his special teams work. Obomanu also made a nice first down catch.

- Aaron Curry is a defensive end. Almost all game Carroll utilizing Curry's talents lined him up at defensive end on 3rd downs and would often rush him on 2nd downs. The 4th pick overall might have to make a permanent change to defensive end.

- Former two time probowler(1998 and 1999) with the Seattle Seahawks Chad "the Snake" Brown raised the 12th man flag. Brown was the very first Seahawks jersey I ever bought back before the 1998 season began. I always liked Brown and he was a great outside linebacker who was a great leader. I always felt bad that Brown missed out on the Seahawks superbowl since he played with the Hawks from 1997-2004.

- Walter Jones didn't raise the 12th man flag. I'm curious to why a future hall of famer did not raise the 12th man flag the first game after his retirement. I thought this would have been the perfect time to have him raise the 12th man flag then unveil the #71 jersey in the rafters as no player will ever wear that jersey number again.

- Mike Williams gives the team plenty of options with his size. He is so tall teams can't play physical with him. Williams had 4 receptions for 64 yards but he also had two drops. Williams the former 10th pick overall in the 2005 draft is basically still raw in the NFL.

- The Seahawks shut out the Rams last season 28-0. The Seahawks dating back to 2003 are 6-2 in season openers. The Seahawks are also 7-1 in home openers.

Well guys hope you enjoyed my post game recap and observations. This is a great start to the season. The Seahawks if they had any shot at winning the division had to win this game given they were at home.


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