49ers-Seahawks prediction

I’m saying the Seahawks will beat the 49ers Sunday night and here is why:

1. Vic Fangio’s 49ers defense, avec Justin Smith or sans Justin Smith, has not been able to stop Marshawn Lynch the past two seasons in Seattle. Lynch has averaged 4.64 yards per carry and scored three touchdowns in those two games.

2. Frank Gore hasn’t had a 100-yard rushing game in Seattle since 2006. Over the past five years, he’s averaged 3.18 yards per carry and fumbled three times in Seattle. Last season in Seattle, Gore had one 18-yard run. Besides that, he gained 10 rushing yards on five carries and fumbled once.

3. The 49ers’ play-calling system, slower than it needs to be, puts Kaepernick and the rest of the offense at a disadvantage, especially at CenturyLink field, the loudest stadium in the NFL.

4. The 49ers’ defense has given up 27.4 points per game over the past seven games, going back to the postseason.

5. The Seahawks’ defense gave up 11.9 points per game at home last season.

Prediction: Seahawks 28, 49ers 14

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  1. If they lose it will be a lot closer but I think they will win because stats don’t tell the true story…

  2. Thanks, Grant. If you’d predicted SF 40- Seattle -20 I’d be worried! : >)
    1: Well, SF will need to tackle better than Game#1!
    2: Well, SF will need to rush better than Game#1.
    3: we’ve covered that
    4&5: Hmm, perhaps this is apples/oranges? The competitive level of those opponents isn’t equivalent between regular season and playoffs, and Seattle’s games stretch the entire season before injuries take their toll while SF’s are late season. Mmmpff. There’s a name for that in Critical Thinking, perhaps JPN can remind us….? But its pretty much apples/oranges…….
    One factor in this game and the entire season will be Colin’s mental approach, determination and confidence. Just showing us how he does in adversity. In that regard, I like SF’s chances.
    If I’m a neutral bettor familiar with both these teams, I’d probably lean towards favoring Seattle at home. I’m not, so I’m going in with this game as a Toss Up; 50-50%. But that’s a Hopeless Homer’s faith that pass pressure and run sustainability will arise where they haven’t shown yet.

  3. “The Seahawks have been able to stop him with their front-seven.”

    Yet they consistently played him with 8 in the box during both games last season.

    In the last two trips to Seattle with Harbaugh, Gore has an average of 3.82 ypc, 1 TD and 1 fumble, both of which came in their 2011 win when they gave him the ball 23 times.

    1. He fumbled in Seattle in 2012 but Staley recovered it after three Seahawks whiffed. Lucky bounce.

      And you’re right, the Seahawks put Chancellor in the box, which is a big reason they stuff Gore so consistently. I don’t know what I was thinking on that one. I’m taking a mulligan. It’s early.

      Last year, Gore had one 18-yard carry in Seattle, but beside that run he had five carries for 10 yards and a fumble.

      1. It was the only point you made that I could disagree with.

        Upset special for the weekend…Cal over Ohio State.

      2. Grant,
        go visit a spot called the Seamonster Lounge. It’s my brother spot. Drinking hole with a live music venue in the U district. If you show, I’ll let him know to take care of you. He’s a Niner fan that is greatly outnumbered up there : )

        1. Bay,

          I’ll have to go next year. I have plans already for Saturday night and I’m not going out after the game Sunday night. I have an early flight to San Jose Monday morning so I can be at Harbaugh’s press conference.

      3. That was LAST year. The Hawks have not faced the offense we are about to bring. Previous years stats mean zero to the players and coaches and will have absolutely no effect on this game. It’s only for the sake of conversation and blog hits.

        This game is it’s own entity, previous results don’t mean Jack [no offense Mr Hammer].

      4. As Jack said, Seattle played 8 men in the box regularly last year and got away with it. They really had the LB’s crowding the line which was a change from the first game when they had them playing further back to take away the medium range passing game of Alex Smith. If they crowd the line Roman has to adjust and force them to loosen up or the running game will be non existent again. This is where they need the TE’s to find those spots in between the LB’s and S’s or run some wheel routes with the RB’s or drags with the WR’s. Just don’t repeatedly run into the 8 man fronts.

        I think you’re probably right about the result Grant, but I believe it’ll be closer on the scoreboard, something like 24-20. Sure hope I get this one wrong in the Pick’em.

        Bold pick Jack. Is Miller healthy this week?

      5. Not sure Rocket, but it was nice of Oakland to make Uraban’s boys feel at home last night with a gunfight outside the team hotel.

    2. Let them play 8 in the box. Then let them eat play action.

      I wonder if, with the Squawks’ physical secondary, it makes sense to play less KW this week, and more 2 TEs? KW is not a good matchup against ‘bump’ (= hold) and run DBs. Boldin OTOH…

    3. I watched the game last year in Seattle and can I just call a muligan for the 49ers on that one? Their energy level was the lowest I’ve seen it with Harbaugh as the coach. I’m not sure why but you can call it the huge win at New England that pretty much wrapped up the division (they only had to beat a poopy Arizona team the next week), the loss of J Smith, 49ers not wanting to reveal too much since they did have the division.
      That game started bad. 3 and out to a very short field for Seattle where they quickly scored. Another punt and short field thanks to penalties and again Seattle scored. This was followed by a great drive that stalled in the red zone after Davis got layed out (Kap really floted that ball, if he throws it more on a line that would have been a TD) and Akers line drive blocked chip shot field goat that was returned for TD. Really bad start which won’t happen again.
      They had to abandon the run after that and think the run game will the most important factor for the 49ers. I hope they make Gore a workhorse and run him 30 times. Then you can give him the week off next week. He has to be huge in this game. I think they picked up Dorsey especially for this game. He is known as a great run deffender. He will have to be in this game.

      1. They just flew from the east and did something a team had never done in the Brady era. NO Justin smith and they just flat out quit in that game. I picked the craphawks to win because I think we split again. But is be very happy if I were wrong. Good news is… Grant picked the craphawks an his picks usually suck. Lol

    4. Grant, so the shehawks like to play us with 8 men in the box, but you dont think Kap have what it takes to make them pay???? not after the GB game, where you supposedly learned what a great pocket passer Kap can be??

      I actually like your prediction, i love how silly you make yourself look by being wrong all the time!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  4. all very fair points Grant, and #4 in particular concerns me – our defense has not been the same since the Pats game last year. the received wisdom (!) on this is that it was all due to injuries to Aldon and Justin Smith, but until we prove that – and this sunday would be the time for a D shutdown performance – it remains a question mark.

    I’m going not only with my heart, but with a contrarian return-to-the-mean view here. the seahawks are big/fast/strong, but they’re also human and no one is quite as good as the hype in this game. corners can get beat, qbs can make bad plays, and big/bad guys like Sherman arent going to be tackling guys for 99 yard losses. Niners 19-15 in a penalty-filled bloodbath.

    having said that, i think the smart thing would be for Kaep to come out throwing. throw early and often, and downfield.

  5. Grant:
    All of your points are valid and maybe correct. One difficulty in looking at past performances is that each season the teams are somewhat different from the season before. Some times the difference is minor and some times it is major. For example, the Patriots looked like a very different team last night then the season before and not in a good way.
    This being the second game of the season it is difficult to see how both the Niners and Seahawks are different from last year. But I don’t think the Seahawks looked very good last week. I understand their record at home is much better than on the road. But the speaks of a team that has problems and NEEDS home field advantage to win games on a consistent basis.
    Their defense had a tough time stopping the Panthers and if Olsen hadn’t dropped some passes I think the Panthers would have won. There offense did not look any where near as good as the Niners offense.
    The crowd and the noise will be a factor IF the Niners allow it to be. As others have said (tuna and Jack), getting a couple of touchdowns early will take the crowd out of the game. Also keeping the mistakes to a minimal will big a big factor.
    I think the 49ers will win; 27-17.

  6. Stop talking about how many points they’ve given up in the last 7 games. Mostly against good offensive teams,that’s so misleading.

      1. Ha! A whopping 12 points! The 49ers will be ready to roll and rock the 12th man with an early lead. The She-Hawks will never recover. 27-17 NINERS!

        1. You’re overreacting to one game. The Seahawks’ offense scored more than 30 points per game at home last season with the same players they have now.

      2. @Grant
        The 2012 She-Hawks averaged 21 points on the road with the same players they have now. They scored a whopping 14 points against the Packers at home….

      3. Grant Cohn says:
        September 13, 2013 at 9:25 am
        The Seahawks are a good offensive team.
        ——————————

        So Carolina is a good defensive team?

  7. The only valid point you made is the play calling. CK had a problem with that last year and it is showing up again.
    Gore didn’t have a great game last week, but he did score a TD and without that TD we would have lost the game. What he has done in 2006 has NO bearing on today!

  8. You know i respect everything you do as a writer. But this prediction actually gives me confidence. When u predicted blowouts last season you were wrong almost every time.

  9. A little swagger and confidence would go a long way for SF. If they come out playing with some urgency and playing not to lose they have a chance. SF cannot play back on their heels, but must be on their toes. Be the taker not the taken. 1.No stupid 15 yd. penalties, grandstanding and helmet tossing. 2. False starts kept to a min. 3. Be prepared and not waste time outs. 4. Keep Wilson off the field/long sustained drives, 5. Catch the damn ball. 6. Hang onto the damn ball. 7. kickoff coverage must be there, 8. No sloppy slip out tackling, wrap up. 9. Harbaugh cannot get into a pissy fit with the refs and berate them. 10. And please, no ultra conservative play calling when a score is needed, don’t settle for 3, get it done. It will take a performance unlike they haven’t had in recent memory. This team lacks discipline at times and must play a REAL good/clean game to have a chance.

    1. Good list, Pete. IF the Niners come out smokin’, I can see a victory. A slow start could be lethal. Hopin’ for a Montana-style, score on the first drive game. Go Niners!

  10. Grant Cohn should be writing for the Seahawks rather than the 49ers .

    i cant believe he thinks the seahawks are going to win WOW…….

    NINERS KILL THE SEACHICKENS 31-24 Go Niners!!!!!!!!!!!!

  11. Last year Seattle jumped out to a quick 7-0 lead on a niners mistake that gave them the ball at the +35 yard line. And to start the second they blocked a FG for a TD. The blowout was a fluke. I’m not saying the win was but the fact the Seahawks offense scores 42 was nothing but a fluke. They had 340 yards of offense and 42 points, how often does that happen in this league? Wilson was able to throw for 4 TD with only 170 yards. They will not be able to score like that again.

    1. Yep. That’s what I meant when I said last year stats are useless. That was a very unusual game all around, lot’s of ‘silly’ stuff happened.
      I am looking forward to a clean game, which I think favors the Niners. Seahawks rely on Wilson”s playmaking ability a little too much IMO, you can’t have a career of running around the backfield and throwing up 2-3 ‘up for grabs’ balls each game. Wilson is good, but I have seen some serious good luck happen to him and we all know you can’t ‘survive’ on luck. I really think he is due for a couple 2 INT games. Sunday night would be a good time for one.

  12. Grant – Lowell has Niners only losing by 7. Did you discuss your predictions with each other?
    Niners really look very synchronized to me Grant. I really think Seattle is 2-3 weeks away from being near top form. We are fortunate to get them early. This will make up for the 12th man.

  13. I think it’s going to be high scoring. 31-30 and whoever has the ball last wins. My best guess is that it’s the Niners that win, Dawson will have his first game winner of the season with 32 seconds on the clock.

  14. I think Seattle is overratted and overhyped. So are the Niners! If the Niners do put it all together though, I think they are the better team, close to being the best in the league.
    It’s way too early in the season to make any statement about the Niners. However, if Seattle loses I think that creates some doubt about all this superbowl hoopla.
    As good as Russell Wilson is, at some point a smart Defensive Coordinator will find ways to beat him.

  15. Grant,

    I think you’re underestimating the impact that losing Justin Smith and Aldon Smith had on the our loss to the hawks. While Justin missed the late season loss to the Hawks, Aldon played while injured and wasn’t effective.

    Two months earlier with Justin and Aldon playing at full strength the Niners defense held the hawks to a meager 6 points. Sure, that game was at Candlestick but do you really think the difference between 6pts and 42pts is the home field?

    Also consider that Kap was starting only his 6th game in that loss and this was the tail end of a brutal road trip. This time around Kap has the benefit of being named the starter going into camp and obviously he now has the experience of playing tough games on the road. Ask the Packers if Kap has improved as a passer.

    I see this as a 20-17 Niners win. Just my 2 cents..

    1. And the 49ers scored 6 points in Seattle last season before a garbage time TD against the Seahawks’ backups.

      1. Grant,
        the stars have to align in Seattle for them to have that type of game again. No one is falling for the sky is falling story you are trying to drum up.
        First, our QB is not in his 5th start. He is now a seasoned starter with multiple big games under his belt. Those games include the playoffs and the super bowl.
        2nd, it won’t be raining and instead of 30 deg, it will be closer to 70 deg.
        3rd, I doubt our defense will yield 4 TD’s to Russell, 111 yards to Lynch and a TD, and a blocked field goal returned for a TD.
        4th, I doubt our leading rusher will be Kaepernick again. Gore had less than 30 rushing that day. I hope that Hunter gets the lion share of carries though. It’s the beginning of the end for the great 21.
        Bottom line, our defense will be better, and guaranteed our offense will be better.

      2. So in one game with Kap starting at qb the Niners offense was held to 6 points. Didn’t you just ask someone not to overreact based on one game? :)

      3. If SF blows out Seattle in Seattle, is it week 2 overreactions or is it okay to crown them the best team in Football?

  16. Grant, I think you are over emphasizing historical stats in your prediction. The niner offense is not the same as it was last year (much more explosive). The Seattle offense seems to have deteriorated -see week 1. I think the niners score 24-28 points. I dont see how seattle scores more that 17.

  17. The 49ers will win this game and here’s why:
    1) Colin Kaepernick > Russell Wilson, 49ers Offense > Seattle Defense (just enough to beat them).

    2) Seattle beat us last time because we were exhausted and we relied heavily on the run. So I think everyone else is overreacting to that one game. I don’t think Seattle will test Colin’s arm all game like Green Bay did. I think they’ll blitz us early and we’ll gash them and get our quick passes off. Then they’ll ease up a bit bit and we’ll get to playing tough football.
    3) We’ll run a hurry-up scripted offense to start the game. Hit ‘em early and shut ‘em up. That will set the tone for the game because it will blunt a little bit of the energy coming from the crowd.

    4) They beat us WITHOUT Justin Smith last year. Regardless of Lynch rushing for 100yds or not, they couldn’t get the edge until we lost ours. That’s not the case the year. Our run defense is probably better this year (at least we have the potential to be), because not only do we have Smith back, but we have greater depth in our entire front 7.

    5) Seattle is facing critical injuries early on in the season.

    6) I expect Quinton Patton to have a productive game. One of his strengths is his ability to get open. That will serve us well when the Seahawks play man-to-man. They don’t want to play zone…they saw what our passing game does to zones. Patton will be the #3 receiver (because he’ll make plays once he gets in) and while Seattle has depth, their depth guys can’t shut down anyone.

    7) Seattle’s secondary isn’t jacked up on “juice” this time around. Now that the effects have wore off, they’re not so dominant. I think we’ll notice the difference in the second half of the game after they’ve put some miles on the field.

    1. +1. A lot of people forget that because we got so far ahead of the Patriots in the first half, they resorted to the no-huddle the whole second half. That together with a short week to prepare and to rest for Seattle, supports your case.

  18. I think the game will hinge on the Niners’ ability to keep Wilson in the pocket. Both the teams will work hard to run the ball. I’m hoping Ian Williams will successfully fight All-Pro center Max Unger at least to a draw. I’m not sure that Robinson’ s departure will be that big a loss since they have capable FBs. Anyway, either side will be able to run the ball with much success. It may all boil down to creating mismatches in the passing game, and in which I think Niners will prevail and scrape through with a 24-20 win.

    1. Carolina did this – sort of – pinch the pocket with the DEs/OLBs and make it hard for RW to get out of the pocket.
      Stay with the receivers at all times, don’t bite on RW coming up, let the LBs deal with it.

  19. Grant, I hate to say it-but i totally agree with you! Big difference between our
    porous secondary and seahawk group that got even better in the offseason by signing Winfield. I also believe their group of receivers are better as a whole then ours. I still don’t understand why Baake has not pinpointed these two area’s of concern.

    1. You just lost any credibility with the Winfield comment, but to counter your assertion our secondary is inferior to theirs…
      Our D line is superior to their D line (not 100% now)
      Our LB’s are in a world of their own
      Our O line is superior to their O line
      Our WR group is on par with theirs…they have no one comparable to Boldin (Rice is no Anquan)
      Our RB group is on par as well both are good
      Our TE group is better
      Special teams are a push
      And the the clincher…Kap>Wilson
      Overall edge to the Niners.

  20. I’d guess that Grant will be about 50% correct against the spread this year, just like the rest of us. Why anybody would be interested in what an individual thinks will happen in this game is beyond me.

  21. Good points, Grant, and the non-homer in me (which is admittedly very small) agrees with most of what you say. However, I wouldn’t look too far into the 27.4 points per game allowed over their last seven. One of those games was against New England, which had the best offense in 2012 (in terms of PPG). Two of those games were against Green Bay (5th), one against Atlanta (7th), one their defense simply didn’t show up (Seattle, don’t expect that to happen Sunday),and one against the 10th best offensive team that happened to be on a historic offensive playoff pace.

    Yes, great teams have to play great against other great teams, bit still….the 27.4 points is not as bad as it looks.

  22. Grant,
    column is decent today but one thing I believe everyone is forgetting is Jim Harbaughs record verse Pete Carroll, I believe is 5-2
    Don’t underestimate Jimmy Harbaugh there is a reason he trashed USC when Pete Carroll was the Coach there, even though USC was top Ranked and Stanford was the underdog, guess what ? 49ers are the underdog again.
    Just from a Coach prospective, nothing Pete Carroll does surprises Jim, every coach has tendencies, Harbaugh knows Pete Carrolls, the question we will find out is does Pete Know Jim Harbaughs tendencies ? I think Not …….

  23. This is a much improved 49er team going into Seattle..
    The Smith brothers were both injured..
    CK was just finding his own.. CK is vastly improved now that he is the established starter.
    The team has AB who I think is a far better WR than Crab (not taking anything away from Crab).
    The OL seem to be doing a far better job protecting CK.
    I would like to see the 49ers insert Patton who I believe is better than KW.
    The game will be close, but I think CK beats the ‘Hawks with his arm and legs.

  24. yada, yada, yada

    Thanks for picking the 9er loss. I appreciate it.

    Other than Joe Thomas I was wondering who has been the biggest disaster and caused the most trouble off the field in 49er history. I was thinking probably Terry Donahue who was most assuredly a part time employee but a full time disaster, but then I think about the episode with Mooch and Donahue and think John York must have been the 2nd biggest disaster for making the wrong choice in what should have been an obvious choice for the organization. I don’t think it’s any coincidence that the 9ers began winning again once John York backed away. So here’s my top 3 49er front office disasters….

    1. Joe Thomas
    2. John York
    3. Terry Donahue

  25. 15, ooo dollar fine on Fabio??????????!!!!!!????? Ridiculous , they just love Green Bay in the nfl office! Ninners 28 Seahawks 17

  26. I think the 49ers are going to get a big dose of Marshawn Lynch early. How well the defense holds up to this onslaught is going to dictate much of how the rest of the game goes. They would rather make the Seahawk defense one-dimensional by putting it on Wilson, than have Lynch going into beast-mode which would then open up Seattle’s passing game and also put them in a TOP game. If that happens, it is going to be very tough for the 49ers to win unless they get some turnovers or some great returns on punts and kick-offs that lead to some quick scores.

    For the 49er offense, several contributors on this blog like Jack Hammer, Rocket and others have pretty much covered that on here as far as the X’s and O’s go. The other aspects such as 3rd down/redzone efficiency are going to be huge. 49ers won’t be able to afford many 3 ‘n outs that will keep putting the defense back on the field. They are going to have to keep drives going and if they stall, hopefully will be where Lee and Co. can pin the Seahawks deep and not give them good field position. I don’t know if I would risk too many long FG attempts unless they are at the end of the half or the defense is playing lights out – and of course, for the win.

    My prediction: A winnable game for the 49ers, but one where they are going to need to execute with near-perfection in all aspects of the game.

  27. I keep saying throw anything that happened last year or in history out the window.

    #7 will be the X-Factor & everything from the 49ers Offense will evolve around him.

    Look forward to seeing how Jr. is going to squirm & backtrack on Monday.

    1. Crab,

      Haven’t heard from Hof or 49erGirl.
      Adam has been absent as well.

      Adam and Hof were team Alex, but 49erGirl was team 49er first and foremost.
      Their takes are missed.

      1. AES – Yes they are both missed. 9erGirl posted about 3 weeks ago…said she’s been super busy. She will be back. Hofer must have had another tree fall on his house. Remember that? Lol……I miss my old pal Hofe.

      2. Crabs,
        The whole forest started falling around Hofer after CK became the starter. It must have looked like he instituted the scorched earth policy on his property by the time the playoffs rolled around. I hope he is well, I liked Hofe. 49erGirl is awesome as well. I think she made it a point to stop by just to poke fun at DS’s “crazy comment of the day” ramblings. It was kind of a weird dynamic. DS hated 49erGirl because she was unapologetically female, and 49erGirl hated DS because she was apologetically female.

    1. Good link. I think it’s too early to guage Mangini’s impact. I did however wonder in the Pack game if some of the delays in calling plays was due to Mangini adding input on what the defense was doing or what he expected them to do.

      1. Houston:

        Could be, but the article suggests that Roman converses with Mangini between series rather than between plays.

        I agree that it’s far too soon to conclude the hiring was a successful move, but if it turns out that way, Harbaugh & Co. deserve credit for a smart, creative and unconventional idea.

  28. We’re blowing Seattle out. They have real issues on offense. Their run game is shot and RW will throw 2 picks. We just have to catch them. Their o line is in serious trouble. Kap is the best QB in the league right now because he can do it all. All me need is better accuracy on the deep ball. We need a home run against Seattle. Then we can gash them with the underneath stuff. They are overrated because their form is off right now. Kap can score at
    will and he will!

    1. Are you basing your comment on the Seahawks running game being shot based on the Panther game? Lynch averaged 106 yards per game at Qwest last season. I doubt if Fangio is going to take him as lightly as you do.

  29. I expect the unexpected, logically you would think the Hawks will win, unless the Niners can improve greatly on their time management and run game, it will be a long afternoon, but hell that is why they play the game, and if their is a team to beat the Hawks, it is the Niners.

    1. We got this one, Neal

      Remember .. Grant’s job is to stir the pot !

      It’s called (in this case) “Blog Marketing”
      Growing up in the Bay Area .. I learned early on..
      that the most successful columnists, were the the
      controversial ones …
      (Herb Caen & Ray Orrack, notwithstanding)
      And the top of the “controversial columnists” – list
      (in the sports world) … was none other than ..
      Lowell Cohn !
      (Being a Niner fan …I only read Lowell, when I felt like
      getting pi$$ed off …well … a lot !)

      Grant is doin’ … OK !

      He’s got no choice …

      you see …??

      He learned from the best !

      And frankly … I like it !

  30. Grant
    Your analysis is a logical conclusion based in the data you provide. Nevertheless, I think you overlook some factors that will as well affect the result of the game: a) The consolidation of Kaepernick as a passer and leader, b) The improved staff coach and, as a consequence, a better game plan, and c) The linebackers corps, arguably the best in the league, surely has studied Lynch and Co. and will find the way to stop them. My prediction: Niners win by 3 points.

  31. CK is not yet able to deal with the kind of crowd noise that he will face sunday night. I believe that the teams problem with getting plays off in time is 80% CK and 20% coaching. CK is a far superior QB than A. Smith in every way but one. I just wish he had a little Smith in him when it came to presnap reads and game management. I’m very worried about sundays game.

    1. My mother once told me that worry is a prayer for something bad to happen. So OC, don’t worry, be happy and stay positive…we got this one.

  32. Ha! Alex Boone comes out, “Hello Ladies, let’s get this over with”. If his demeanor is any indication of how this offensive line is going to play, it’s going to be a long night for their defensive front. You’re damn right it was an embarrassment on SNF. Alex Boone has it right.

  33. I think folks are underestimating the Seahawks based on last week’s east coast game performance. It’s a whole different story in front of their crowd against the Niners. Rain will affect both teams’ passing games.

    How stupid would Sherman have to be to “accidentally fly into Harbaugh on the sidelines?” Depends on how juiced he is, I guess.

    I don’t have the Niners going 16-0 this year and this game is one of the reasons why. Seattle by 17, yup that much. But payback at the Stick will be verrry sweet! Niners losing this game won’t be as crushing to them as the loss at home to the Niners would be for Seattle.

    My heart will be hoping for a Niner win. But I am prepared for something completely different.

  34. I realize it was only one game and the season opener on the road but after watching the Squawks struggle against Carolina I see a lot of tape the Niners can use to game plan with. The Panthers did a good job of containing Lynch and at the same time getting pressure on Wilson, and for the most part keeping him in the pocket. Net result 1 TD and 2 FGs = 12 points. I’m thinking a healthy and extremely motivated Niners D can do better than The Panthers.
    On the other side of the ball Carolina was able to run on Seattle. Kap is a way better passer than Newton. Subtract several drops and a fumble and Carolina wins that game. Niners just need to play clean and limit mistakes.
    As far as the blow out last year…hey S*@t happens. I remember even the all time great teams with Montana, Rice, Lott…etc got beat like a drum once in a while. Ancient history now.

  35. The outcome of this game will depend a lot on what the refs will call in the secondary considering the Seahawks aggressive hands on secondary. On a side note, it’s nice to see Clay Matthews lighter in the wallet after is dirty cheap shot on Kaep.

  36. The key to this game for the 49ers will be getting the passing game going. Last year in Seattle it was a disaster. I’d be surprised if Seattle don’t bring the same plan as last year – stack the box and force Kaepernick to beat them through the air. It is up to Kaepernick and the receivers to make it work, and if they do, then the running game will come into play in the 2nd half.

    On defense, the keys will be stopping the ‘Hawks running game, and getting pressure on Wilson while also preventing him from getting outside the pocket to extend plays. They struggled mightily in both departments last year.

  37. If the Niners are to win this one, CK will be the difference maker. I don’t think any NLF defense can really hold him down. Haven’t seen it in big games yet, and he’s getting better. CK is just too explosive in all aspects. Agree that he and the coaches must handle the crowd noise factor.

    The Niners defense will be tested by RW and Lynch’s beast mode. If Seattle gets the run game going, then RW will have room to roam, create and attack. Always a physical challenge to face Lynch, but if the Niners front 7 can play straight up against the run game, then they can keep contain against RW.

    I will take CK against Seahens D over RW against the Niners D. That’s 28 – 21 Niners.

  38. I rarely disagree with Grant, but in this case I think the Niners pull out the upset. Seattle’s starting CB Brandon Browner is out. DE Cliff Avril will start his first game and might get some pressure, but his run defense is shaky at best (2012 PFF run stopping grade is an embarrassing MINUS 2.5. Compare to Jared Allen at plus 12.60). There’s a reason why the Lions let him go. It seems to me like the Niners have figured out how to score in the red zone and convert third downs. I think they’re ready for this game.

  39. The Niners will win this game easily. The late season loss to Seattle last year has left a bad taste in their mouths and I’m sure they’ve been looking forward to this game since then. They’ve also had all off-season to prepare for Seattle. On top of that, they have BJD to practice against.

    So expect the Niners to stuff the run, neutralize R. Wilson, and win the game 35-13.

  40. It will be a tight but high scoring game. The wild card is the run game on both sides of the ball. If we get it going on the offense and stop it on defense, then we will leave Seattle with a 2-0.
    Niners by a field goal 31-28.

  41. Grant is stuck in the past….with a last years performance states hang over. Get over it kid. I do notice that win patterns get established among certain teams and seem to repeat, but a one-time blow out is not a pattern. The 49ers didn’t NEED that game.
    Yes, the defense has been softer since the offense has gotten tougher. They seem to play as hard as they need to, to win the game. No more no less.

  42. We ALL have to believe we can and will win the game to make to happen……if you want to help. No scholarly white man analytic mode. Not helpful. This mental attitude is huge…..I’m talking for the fans as well as the players. How do you think the Packers were able to make such a game of it last week? They have a huge fan base across the country. I saw a couple watching TV w/ 9er fans @ the pizza parlor here in Santa Rosa. With so many pulling for them to win, it made a great difference. What U desire to happen, if u want it enough…..and there are enough of us………it’ll happen.

  43. Pigskin Prognosticators Predict:

    Last week nobody hit the winning score but on the point differential Matt had the Niners winning by 4 (20-16), MidWestNiner also had the Niners winning by 4 (17-13) and Phil Fan had Niners by 8 (38-30). These were the closest calls to the 6 point actual differential. Rest had bigger/smaller point differentials. This week the consensus seems to be for closer and lower scoring game. Late this week the point diff is widening for a seattle win or bigger Niner win.

    So, She-hawks. (courtesy of AD lol) Who you gonna call? I’ll stick with Niners by 7, 27-20.

    Grant: Prediction: Seahawks 28, 49ers 14

    Houston 9er: 20-17 Niners. I think the 9er coaching staff has been scheming for this game against the Seahawks since last season ended. I’d bet the farm the 9ers coaches schemed more for this upcoming game than they did the Packer game. 49ers – 20 Seahawks – 17

    MWNiner: 28-17 Niners. I’m goin’ with a 28-17 for the final … Care to put your prediction out there ?

    Sullyball: 20-17 Niners (same as Houston 9er). My prediction… 49ers win 20-17. I think Dawson will be important for us this week.

    Mauidave: 24-17 Niners. Seattle’s D is a little short handed minus Avril & Irvin and Clemons working his way back from a knee surgery… I think the Niners can move the ball & control the clock…Their O line struggled against the Panthers as well, no real run game…Turn Overs can’t be predicted but whoever wins that battle along with ST big plays could determine the game. 24-17 Niners.

    McdougleVey: 31-23 Niners. Patton and VMac early and often! Pound the rock and open it up for Q and Vernon later. 31-23 SF

    RandRguy840: 30-27 Niners : )

    gsixty: 42-13 Niners.

    Exgolfer: 27-17 Niners. Can’t wait. Early prediction: 49ers 27 Seahawks 17

    Phil Fan: 27-20 Niners. Close back and forth dog fight but barbecued seahawks at the end

    Larry Rowe: 24-10 Niners I am sure that Jim is ready and willing to serve his Old Buddy Pete, up some Humble Pie. I believe this game will set the tone for the season. Originally: 28 9ers – 10 Seachickens.

    AES: 33-17 Niners. I don’t believe that the ‘hawks’ defense can stop CK and Co. This game will come down to our defense stifling Wilson and Lynch, which they are more than capable of doing. Early prediction (reserve the right to change, lol). 49ers 33 – 17

    NinersRoc: 34-16 Niners. My prediction: 49ers 34 – Seahawks 16

    Matt: 28-24 She-hawks (lol sorry… Can we attribute A Dixon’s slam to his just following Coach’s “Bring some knuckles not an open slap” re: Matthews? …We got us some coach huh?)

    F’ing arrogant know-it-all: 24-20 Seattle. As Jack said, Seattle played 8 men in the box regularly last year and got away with it. They really had the LB’s crowding the line which was a change from the first game… If they crowd the line Roman has to adjust and force them to loosen up or the running game will be non existent again. This is where they need the TE’s to find those spots in between the LB’s and S’s or run some wheel routes with the RB’s or drags with the WR’s. Just don’t repeatedly run into the 8 man fronts.

    Fesnyc: 19-15 Niners. I’m going not only with my heart, but with a contrarian return-to-the-mean view here. the seahawks are big/fast/strong, but they’re also human and no one is quite as good as the hype in this game. corners can get beat, qbs can make bad plays, and big/bad guys like Sherman arent going to be tackling guys for 99 yard losses. Niners 19-15 in a penalty-filled bloodbath.

    49er42: 27-17 Niners. I don’t think the Seahawks looked very good last week…Their defense had a tough time stopping the Panthers and if Olsen hadn’t dropped some passes I think the Panthers would have won. There offense did not look any where near as good as the Niners offense. The crowd and the noise will be a factor IF the Niners allow it to be. As others have said (tuna and Jack), getting a couple of touchdowns early will take the crowd out of the game. Also keeping the mistakes to a minimal will be a big factor. I think the 49ers will win; 27-17.

    Razoreater: 27-17 Niners. Ha! A whopping 12 points! The 49ers will be ready to roll and rock the 12th man with an early lead. The She-Hawks will never recover. 27-17 NINERS!

    Crab15: 27-17 Niners. Keeping it simple…Niners are in mid-season form already and Seattle is out of sync. Niners 27 She-hawks 17

    NINERFAITHFUL84: 31-24 Niners. NINERS KILL THE SEACHICKENS 31-24 Go Niners!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Bayareafanatic: 31-30 Niners.I think it’s going to be high scoring. 31-30 and whoever has the ball last wins. My best guess is that it’s the Niners that win, Dawson will have his first game winner of the season with 32 seconds on the clock

    John: 20-17 Niners. Two months earlier with Justin and Aldon playing at full strength the Niners defense held the hawks to a meager 6 points. Sure, that game was at Candlestick but do you really think the difference between 6pts and 42pts is the home field? I see this as a 20-17 Niners win. Just my 2 cents..

    Grumpy Guy: 31-21ish Niners. I think the 49ers will win, and it won’t be as close as people expect. 31-21ish.

    Rollotomasi: 24-17 Niners. The niner offense is not the same as it was last year (much more explosive). The Seattle offense seems to have deteriorated -see week 1. I think the niners score 24-28 points. I dont see how seattle scores more that 17.

    Mood_Indigo: 24-20 Niners. It may all boil down to creating mismatches in the passing game, and in which I think Niners will prevail and scrape through with a 24-20 win.

    Kezar Splinters: 28-21 Niners. The Niners defense will be tested by RW and Lynch’s beast mode. If Seattle gets the run game going, then RW will have room to roam, create and attack. Always a physical challenge to face Lynch, but if the Niners front 7 can play straight up against the run game, then they can keep contain against RW. That’s 28 – 21 Niners.

    Nick: 35-13 Niners. The Niners will win this game easily… They’ve also had all off-season to prepare for Seattle. On top of that, they have BJD to practice against…So expect the Niners to stuff the run, neutralize R. Wilson, and win the game 35-13.

    MidWestNiner: 31-28 Niners. It will be a tight but high scoring game. The wild card is the run game on both sides of the ball. If we get it going on the offense and stop it on defense, then we will leave Seattle with a 2-0. Niners by a field goal 31-28.

    Jack Hammer: 19-17 49ers

    1. 9ers 34 hawks 24: Shoot out in the first half but 9ers stay a touchdown ahead and ice it with a field goal in the last two minutes of the game.

  44. Did Grant predict the Niners to lose? I don’t believe it. The Niners will win Sunday because they have a better OL, DL and QB. That’s it and in football (even going back to days of Joe) that always the difference between winning and losing. Also, anyone that thinks the game with NE didin’t have a bearing on the Seattle game is an idiot, or is named Pete Prisco (which effectively equates to the same thing). When we played Seattle last year in the ‘Stick, that game was over by middle of 3rd Q (I just watched it again). That game is going to be closer to what you see Sunday than the last. Think about this, the Niners trounced the Pack last year in Lambeau and Seattle (should have) lost to them at home. The Niners beat Atlanta on the road in playoffs and Seattle lost to Atlanta a week earlier. My point, other than a fluke outing by the Niners, nothing last year supports the Seachickens as being better this year. Hell, last week the Seahags looked awful.

  45. The are some really smart comments on the board today. This team won’t go undefeated but neither will Seattle so this loss isnt a big deal. The 9er offense will sputter in the noise and they might get 1TD from a TE, despite the missing/ hurt players on the seachickens defense. The oline is overrated and Kaep is still young. The 9er defense will stuff the run and be ok against the pass, but not perfect and that will be enough to score or set up 1 or 2 easy TDs for Seatle. The 9ers will have more field goals than Seattle, but the lack of TDs will doom them. Don’t be surprised by a desperation trick play on special teams from SF (the only other way they possibly get a TD). It will be close SEA 20 SF 15, unless SF gets the trick play TD for the win.

  46. Sound reasons for your prediction, Grant. Can’t really disagree with those points – and I think that slow playcalling in that environment could be the dagger.

    HOWEVER – The Seahawks not fully healthy and didn’t play well last week (on the road, of course, where they’re far more vulnerable). And I think the offense is completely different from what the Niners showed last time in Seattle. It’s much more open, Kaep is far more comfortable, and the presence of healthy Smith Bros. should make a very large difference in our defensive showing. I do think we can run on that defense when they move Chancellor out of the box, which they will have to do with our significantly improved air attack. The guy I’m looking to step up is Patton – I wouldn’t put it past Harroman to keep him under wraps against the Pack to save him as a surprise package for Seattle.

    So I’ll go with the visitors in a close one. But I’m such a homer it’s damn ridiculous.

  47. Grant you are putting too much on the late season game last year, no justin smith, field was wet so our lineman were slipping on the edge trying to get to Russel Wilson, additionally Greg Roman has said the gameplan was very vanilla because they were saving the good stuff for the playoffs. Most importantly, you failed to mention Seattles very weak offensive line. Niners front 7 will be all over Wilson all day, and Seattles wide wr’s are decent at best. Expect a big game from Kyle Williams this game. He will get deep on a td pass. 49ers 31 She Hawks 17

  48. You guys all seem very tense and very unsure of your team. The fact is seattle won the game last week in a hostile environment with a 10 am start. The defense allowed only 7 points on the road! Tomorrow is the Seahawks home opener, the energy level would be hard for any team to handle. Obviously last year is behind these two new teams so there’s no need to bring it up. Marshawn is not the only beast you have to worry about, not only the whole team but the entire city is going to be in beast mode for this game. All the talk about luck needs to be garnered towards san fran

    1. And when the 49ers win, and win big, the entire city of Seattle can go back to being best known for nothing but gloomy weather.

  49. You know Grant, ESPN has a new 49ers beat writer and I already get the sense that he’s trying to get people to really like him by playing up the Niners at every opportunity. To me, he’s already lost credibility, because I feel like he’s trying to buy my vote.

    You’re not doing that, and I really appreciate that. You did your homework and told us what you really think, which I think is the best sign of an analyst doing their job. It may make you less popular in the end, but at least you can look in the mirror and say you were true to yourself. It will also garner you fans like me.

    All that being said, I hope you are wrong. The reason why I’m thinking the niners can win are:

    1) Kaep is a lot farther along than he was before, and he’s had big wins in tough environments, like NE
    2) Justin Smith is healthy and so is Aldon Smith
    3) Harbaugh is high strung and he would give up all his worldy possessions to get revenge and win this game on the road.
    4) After one brutal mid-field hit, Eric Reid is going to make the receivers hear footsteps.
    5) Boldin and Vernon Davis. Nuff said.
    6) I’ve got to believe that the niners will simplify things to avoid delay of game penalties and unnecessary timeouts
    7) We have a better kicker than last year
    8) We have more game tape on R. Wilson and his tendencies and will be better able to handle him than before.
    9) The Seahawks did not play a great game last week. That includes Marshawn Lynch. They are not red-hot like we are right now.
    10) We wear the ****ing red and gold and do not bow to any team, even if they do have the loudest stadium in the NFL.

  50. i predict the press democrat fires grant after this game…looking at his column it is clear that he didnt plan, and therfore he was planning to fail…meanwhile the niners need to take one game at a time…give 110% and (fill in your own cliches here)

  51. You, of little faith. Why don’t change your name to Benedict Arnold while you are at it.
    1. The 49ers have won the 3 of the last 4 meetings with the Seahawks, including games in Seattle.
    2. Frank Gore does NOT need to rush for 100 yards for the 49ers to win a game, as last week’s game has shown. Frank Gore has been an effective runner but his production requires an effective offensive line, timely coaching decisions among other things. Knowing that the Seahawks must account for him, Gore is effective even if he only runs one yard.
    3. The last team to beat the Seahawks at CenturyLink Field are the 49ers in 2011 and included the 12th man that was very quiet in the last stages of the fourth quarter since the 49ers were ahead. So much for loudest field issue.
    4. You expect the defense to hold all offensive teams to zero points? That’s ridiculous as your statements. The one you should keep in mind is that the 49ers won most of those games.
    5. Again, who cares what other teams do in Seattle in 2012. Even the 49ers lost there due, in part, to the noise. The real points are the 49ers know how to win and have won in Seattle, with the 12th man present and the Seahawks lost four games last year outside of Seattle, so the Seahawks do lose games.
    The Seahawks will lose this game. Their arrogance and wanting to run up the score in 2012 has not been forgotten on the 49er sideline. Expect the 49er team to lead the cry: “PAYBACK IS A B—-!!”. See you at CenturyLink in your Blue and Green jacket – Traitor!

  52. As much as i dislike Pete, Seahawks are very good and a tough team to beat at home. This is not going to be easy for us to win this game however with CK we have the chance to win against any team any where. the outcome of the game is going to depend on:

    - reducing penalties and managing the clock
    - We need to play physical and match the intensity of the seahawks
    - we need to move fast in and out of the huddle
    - We need to tackle much better and contain RW in the pocket
    - Lynch must be attacked before he can get going
    - OL must provide time for CK to find the open WR and VD has to perform in this game

    GO Niners

  53. Early in 4th Q Grant is looking like a genius having called 28-14 Seattle. This keeps up he’s going to win this week’s contest

  54. I told all off you thre niners wouldnt get anything but field goals. Only 2 or 3 others here even picked the seahawks to win. Have you learned to respect the home field yet? Do not despair it is only 1 game. Scary thing is that the seachickens did this with guys out injured.

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