Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Top five most memorable games in the Seahawks-49ers NFC West rivalry

By Kshell

The Seattle Seahawks take on the San Francisco 49ers this Sunday at Qwest Field in Seattle, Washington. Since these two teams have been NFC West rivals in 2002 they have played some memorable games. I'll post the five most memorable games in this short NFC West rivalry. I will also do a little feature of famous players who played for both teams.

5. 49ers at Seahawks,November 12, 2007: This was the second Monday Night Football game for the Seattle Seahawks vs the 49ers in the franchises history. The Seahawks were fresh off an overtime loss to the Cleveland Browns and lost former league MVP Shaun Alexander to injury. The Seahawks couldn't run the ball at all the first 8 games of the season and were just 4-4. Mike Holmgren then vowed to throw the ball and screw the run.

The Seahawks with a loud roaring crowd on Monday Night came out throwing. The Seahawks on the first possesion didn't run once. Hasselbeck capped the drive with a 1 yard touchdown pass to tight end Will Heller. The Seahawks were up 10-0 at the end of the first quarter and were up 17-0 at halftime.

Hasselbeck was the star of the game going 27 of 40 passing for 278 yards with two passing touchdowns. Maurice Morris filled in nicely for Shaun Alexander rushing for 87 yards and a touchdown. The Seahawks defense was dominant that game. The Defense for the second time in four years shut out the 49ers at Qwest Field. Alex Smith threw for a horrific 114 yards on the day. This was the Seahawks third shutout in their last four Monday Night Games. The Seahawks were just 4-4 but used this game to spark a 2nd half run. The Seahawks would end the season winning their fourth straight division title and had a 10-6 record.

4. 49ers at Seahawks, December 14, 2006: This was the first year of the special Thursday Night games on NFL Network. Most fans couldn't watch this game and for Seahawks fans thats a good thing. The weather was a down pouring rain the entire game. This game was also the biggest upset in this NFC West rivalry.

The Seahawks the previous three seasons had swept the 49ers including allowing just a combined 3 points in the previous two games at Qwest Field. The defending NFC Champions who were 8-5 at the time took on the 5-8 49ers who had the leagues worst record in 2004 and 2005 seasons combined. After jumping out to a quick 7-0 lead the Seahawks stalled offensively and the game was 7-3 heading into the 4th quarter.

The 49ers erupted in the 4th quarter scoring 21 points. Alex Smith threw for two touchdowns that quarter and also ran one in. The 49ers had swept the Seahawks that season led by Frank Gore rushing for over 350 yards on the year against the Seahawks. This was the low point in the Seahawks season. The Seahawks would end the season with a 9-7 record but still win their third straight NFC West championship.

3. 49ers at Seahawks, October 12,2003: This was a big game for the Seahawks. They were on a national primetime game on Sunday Night football taking on the defending division champions. The 3-1 Seahawks were trying to show the rest of the nation that they were finally ready to take that big step. They were taking on the 49ers who were 2-3 heading into this game.

The Seahawks jumped out to a 17-0 lead midway through the 2nd quarter. Mack Strong ran for a 21 yard touchdown to give them the 17-0 lead. The 49ers had a field goal at halftime to trail 17-3. The Seahawks were showing the nation they were for real then the 2nd half happened.

The 49ers scored a touchdown to begin the half. The Seahawks offense was doing nothing all 2nd half. On the 49ers second touchdown they botched the hold on the extra point for Seattle to remain with the lead 17-16. That point would prove very costly. The 49ers would finally take the lead 19-17 and the Seahawks were showing everyone in the nation they weren't for real. Mike Holmgren in a famous picture went off on the Seahawks offense on the sidelines.

The Seahawks drove down the field and Josh Brown hit his first career game winning field goal. The Seahawks would hang on to a 20-19 win on national tv. That botched extra point ended up deciding the game. The Seahawks would finish the season making the playoffs by just one game.

2. Seahawks at 49ers, December 27, 2003: The Seahawks were coming into this game 9-6 and needing this win to have any shot at the playoffs. The 49ers were 7-8 under first year head coach Dennis Erickson. The Seahawks entered the game with some road woes. The Hawks were 8-0 at home but just 1-6 on the road. The Seahawks started off sluggish and found themselves trailing 14-0 in the 2nd quarter.

The Seahawks offense would rally the team. Matt Hasselbeck would hit special teams standout Alex Bannister for 31 yards then Alexander added a touchdown to tie it up at 14 in the first half.

Trailing 17-14 in the 4th quarter Hasselbeck would hit Koren Robinson for the game winning score to put the Seahawks up 21-17. The Seahawks would win 24-17. The win would put the Seahawks at 10-6.

This was a Saturday game so the Seahawks would have to wait for a Cowboys loss or a Vikings loss. Both teams had lost so the Seahawks at 10-6 were going to the NFC playoffs for the first time in four seasons. This would also be the last game for Jeff Garcia and last game Terrell Owens would be a member of the San Francisco 49ers.

1. 49ers at Seahawks, October 14, 2002 This was the monday night game in Seahawks Stadium history(it was then called Seahawks stadium). The Seahawks were 1-3 going into the game against the 3-1 49ers. This was a back and forth game with a memorable ending.

After trailing 10-0 the Seahawks rallied to take a 14-10 lead when Bobby Engram ran back a punt 61 yards for a touchdown. The Seahawks clinging to a 21-20 lead going into the 4th quarter were about to experience the most disrespectful play in Seahawks history.

Jeff Garcia would hit Terrell Owens for 37 yards for the game winning touchdown beating Shawn Springs. After the touchdown Owens pulls out a sharpie from his sock and signs the ball. He then tossed the ball to someone sitting in Shawn Springs suite. Its one of the most iconic images of the decade. Holmgren was furious. Al Michaels and John Madden were absolutely stunned at the lack of respect.

The Seahawks would lose 28-21 dropping them to 1-4. The Seahawks would win their last 3 games of the season to be 7-9 to save Holmgrens job. The 49ers at the end of the season would win the division with a 10-6 record and then fire head coach Steve Mariucci. The 49ers have not made the playoffs since.

Now I'm going to go through some players who played for both sides or coached for both sides:

Jerry Rice, SF 1985-2000, Sea 2004 The most greatest receiver of all-time played the majority of his hall of fame career with the 49ers but he did end his career with the Seahawks. With the 49ers Rice caught 1,281 passes for 19,247 yards and 176 touchdowns. For his one season with the Seahawks he provided leadership to the team and help them win their first division crown in five seasons. He caught 25 passes for 362 yards and 3 touchdowns.

Julian Peterson, SF 2000-2005, Sea 2006-08 Julian Peterson the only player to make the probowl with both teams. He made the probowl with the 49ers in 2002 and 2003(first team all-pro) and made the probowl with the Seahawks all three seasons. Peterson was a pass rusher from the outside linebacker position. He struck fear in quarterbacks in the league and at times he was considered the best outside linebacker in the NFC. In six seasons with the 49ers Peterson had 21.5 sacks and forced 7 fumbles. While in three seasons in Seattle Peterson forced 24.5 sacks and forced 9 fumbles.

Ricky Watters, SF 1992-94, Sea 1998-2001 Ricky Watters was a versatile running back. He could catch passes and run the ball. He helped the 49ers reach the NFC championship game in his first two season there then in his third year he helped the 49ers win the Superbowl scoring 3 Touchdowns that game. He made the probowl in all three of his seasons with the 49ers. He would end his career with the Seahawks. He was the offensive leader and the guy in the huddle who could bark instructions. He ran hard with Seattle and was a big part of the 1999 AFC West Division championship team the first Seahawks team to make the playoffs since 1988. Believe it or not Watters actually had more yards rushing and more total yards of offense with the Seattle Seahawks.

Pete Carroll SF Defensive Coordinator 1995-1996, Sea Head Coach 2010-present Yes current Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll was once coordinator under George Seifert in the 90's. Carroll is the third consecutive head coach for the Seahawks who was once a coordinator for the 49ers. Pete Carroll is now ask to turn around the culture and attitude of the Seahawks.

Mike Holmgren, SF Quarter Backs coach 1986-1988, offensive coordinator 1989-1991, Sea Head Coach 1999-2008 Mike Holmgren began his professional career with the 49ers learning under Bill Walsh. While in San Francisco Holmgren was the quarterbacks coach for Joe Montana but was credited with the development of Steve Young. In fact the 1989 49ers led by Holmgren as offensive coordinator was believe to be the greatest offense team in NFL history. Holmgren while in Seattle transformed the division. It must have been strange for 49ers fans to see the Seahawks roll off four consecutive division titles while watching the same offense that Bill Walsh ran. When the Seahawks played the 49ers under Holmgren the Seahawks held a 9-5 record.

Well I hope you guys enjoyed the top five memorable games in the Seahawks-49ers history. I know I forgot several players who played on both sides but I thought I'd just spotlight a few who made impacts for both teams.

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