Thursday Night Football comes to Seattle tonight as the San Francisco 49ers arrive to face the Seahawks at Lumen Field. This matchup will significantly impact the fate of both teams, with four weeks left in the season.
Niners Can Avenge A Decade Of Disappointment Tonight
Seattle hasn’t been a friendly place to play for the 49ers for more than a decade. They have lost ten of the previous 11 games in the Emerald City, with an average loss margin of nearly 16 points per game.
The one positive over that span is that the one victory was in the final week of 2019 when San Francisco clinched the NFC West title. That could give them a slight mental edge as they hope to secure a playoff spot with a win.
The strength of this San Francisco squad is its defense. They are first in the league in yards allowed per game at 286.6 and are the top team in the NFL against the run, allowing 75.1 yards per game.
In addition, the Niners only allow 15.2 points per game, which is also the best in the league, and have been even more dominant in recent performances. In their last four games, they’ve held opponents to an average of just 8.5 points. The offense has also been decent, ranking eighth in points per game at 24.4.
The Niners are 9-4 on the season and can win their seventh straight game tonight. Rookie quarterback Brock Purdy has led them in the last two games since Jimmy Garoppolo was lost for the regular season with an injury.
Purdy threw for 185 yards and two touchdowns in the Niners’ win over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers while completing 76% of his passes. It will be interesting to see how he will perform tonight in one of the NFL’s most hostile environments for visiting teams.
Seahawks Hope To Remain In Playoff Race
Seattle has fallen to 7-6 since losing three of its last four games. The Seahawks previously led the division after starting the season 6-3 and have lost three straight games to much lesser opponents. They were beaten at home last weekend by the Carolina Panthers after a four-point win over the Los Angeles Rams, which ended a two-game losing streak.
The Seahawks are still the ninth-ranked passing attack in the league, averaging 244.2 yards per game, but their ground attack leaves a lot to be desired, as they are 20th in the league with 111.1 yards per contest. They are also a better-scoring team than San Francisco, ranking sixth in the NFL with 26.3 points per game. Although Lumen Field isn’t a pleasant place for road teams to play, Seattle hasn’t done well at home, where they have a 3-3 record.
Geno Smith has been solid for the Seahawks this season and has passed for 3,433 yards and 25 touchdowns, with is fourth among quarterbacks. He’s also thrown eight interceptions and is fifth in the league in total QBR at 64.5.
His favorite target has been Tyler Lockett, who has 71 receptions for 896 yards and eight touchdowns, which puts him fifth among all receivers. Kenneth Walker III is the top running back for Seattle with 649 yards and nine touchdowns and averages 4.7 yards per carry.
The 49ers’ defense will stifle the Seahawks as they keep the streak alive.