This is the live blog for the 49ers Week 16 road game against the Seattle Seahawks. I’ll be updating this after every play from the Cohn Zohn.
Patrick Willis and Ted Ginn Jr. are inactive. That means Larry Grant will start again next to NaVorro Bowman at inside linebacker, and Braylon Edwards will get a chance to start next to Michael Crabtree at wide receiver.
Here are the other inactive 49ers: Scott Tolzien, Tramaine Brock, Daniel Kilgore, Mike Person, Ian Williams.
Shawntae Spencer is active and listed as the fourth cornerback.
1:12 Patrick Willis gives an impassioned pregame speech and Anthony Dixon underscores his message by yelling, “Bow! Bow! Bow! Bow!” right next to him.
1:15 Pete Carrol says the Seahawks are going to run the ball on the Niners defense.
1:15 The Seahawks win the toss and take the ball. Touchback Akers.
1:16 Chippiness early on. C.J. Spillman involved in the skirmish.
1:17 Doug Baldwin drops a pass over the middle. If he had caught it, Dashon Goldson would have blasted him.
1:17 Tarvaris Jackson play fakes and completes a 43-yard pass to Lockett, just off the practice squad. He beat Rogers. They haven’t run once.
1:18 Lynch runs up the middle and gains three yards before Isaac Sopoaga stops him.
1:19 Lynch runs off right guard and gets tackled by Bowman after three yards. It’s like he’s running into concrete. Third and four.
1:19 Jackson completes it to TE Zach Miller over the middle for 18 yards and a first down. He beat Larry Grant on the play.
1:20 Golden Tate catches an eight yard pass. Second and two.
1:20 Baldwin catches a pass in the left flat, jukes Goldson and runs into the end zone. Touchdown Seahawks. What an incredibly easy touchdown. That drive was all passing. 7-0 Seahwaks.
1:22 This exactly what the Niners didn’t want to happen. Can they come back in this loud stadium.
1:23 Kyle Williams returns to the SF 31.
1:24 On first down Smith play fakes, rolls left and runs for seven yards.
1:24 This time Smith play fakes and rolls right, but Chris Clemons chases him down and Smith throws it away. Third and three.
1:25 The Niners call a timeout. They always seem to have trouble getting plays in at Seattle.
1:26 Shotgun, five wide receivers, and Chris Clemons jumps early for a five yard neutral zone penalty. First down.
1:27 Gore bounces and inside run outside and gains four yards.
1:28 Now Hunter runs up the middle and gains four. Third and two.
1:29 Shotgun, five wide, Smith completes a stick throw to Crabtree over the middle and he’s tackled near the first down. They’re measuring.
1:29 They didn’t make it. They missed by three inches. Harbaugh wants to go for it at midfield. No matter how this turns out, good for Harbaugh.
1:30 Smith sneaks and gets the first down. That was the best of Harbaugh. Great blue collar decision, play call and execution.
1:31 Smith play fakes, gets a ton of time to throw and completes it to Crabtree on a deep out on the right sideline. Gain 12. Smith to Crabtree is becoming a good weapon.
1:32 Roman calls a screen to Hunter but Hunter can’t get in position to catch the pass, so Smith spikes it at his feet.
1:33 Smith throws deep to Vernon Davis down the right side line but he juggles the ball and only gets one foot down. Third and ten. Total Vernon Davis play.
1:34 Smith rolls right and throws to Crabtree who almost makes a sprawling catch but drops it as his back hits the ground.
1:35 David Akers pushes a 52-yard field goal wide left. The Niners look good on that drive but cannot respond.
1:36 On first down Ray McDonald collapses the pocket and sacks Jackson for a loss of ten.
1:36 Lynch bounces the run outside and gains 19. Third and one.
1:37 Lynch runs off right tackle and gains four.
1:38 Leon Washington runs off left tackle for four. The Seahawks are having no problem moving the ball early on.
1:38 Jackson play fakes and throws the ball away before Parys Haralson hits him. Third and six.
139 Jackson throws deep to Baldwin and Rogers almost picks it off he was in such good coverage. The Seahawks have to punt
1:39 Kyle Williams makes the fair catch at the SF 9.
1:40 Gore runs up the middle for 14 yards.
1:41 Gore runs up the middle again, this time for five.
1:41 The Seahawks load up the box so Smith throws a quick pass to Crabtree in the right flat, and he picks up four yards. Third and one.
1:42 Gore runs up the gut for two yards and the first down. This is such a serious, playoff type game. You love this time of year in football.
1:42 Smith overthrows Davis deep down the right sideline, but the Seahawks get called for defensive holding. Crabtree runs back to the huddle and pats Smith on the shoulder pad and says something to him. First and ten. at the SF 41.
1:44 Hunter runs a sweep right for a one yard gain.
1:45 Hunter runs off left guard and picks up ten yards. Goodwin pulled and laid a nice block on the play.
1:46 Smith checks down to Gore, hits him between the numbers, Gore catches it and picks up 13 yards. Great play.
1:46 Gore runs a sweep left and gains no yards. Second and ten. Delanie Walker is down on the field, he got kicked in the face.
1:49 Walker is still down on the field. They’re going to have to cart him off of the field. Harbaugh is right there. What a violent knee to the head.
1:50 My dad has this to add, “For Harbaugh to joke about wearing mouth pieces this week was foolish. They short circuit the vibrations on concussions. I hope Walker was wearing a mouthpiece.”
1:51 Walker has a towel over his mouth. Certainly his mouth has been damaged.
1:52 Gore runs off right tackle for six yards. Third and four.
1:54 The Seahawks blitz two, Smith holds on to the ball and takes the sack.
1:55 Akers makes a 53-yard field goal. 7-3 Niners. They scored, they’re in the game, but they still don’t get touchdowns. Two nice drives, three points.
1:57 Leon Washington returns the kickoff to the Sea 20.
2:00 Lynch runs up the middle, gets hit after one yard and then picks up five yards after contact.
2:01 Lynch runs off right guard for another six yard gain. First down.
2:01 Jackson completes a pass to Ben Obomanu on a quick screen for six again.
2:02 Justin Forsett runs up the middle for five and another first down.
2:03 Jackson completes an another six yard pass to Butler on an out. Culliver was way off in coverage. Second and four.
2:03 Lynch runs off right tackle for thirteen yards and a first down.
2:04 Sopoaga tackles Lynch after a one yard gain.
2:05 Jackson completes a pass to a wide open TE Morrah, but Obomanu gets called for picking Goldson on the play. 10 yard penalty. Second and 19.
2:06 Jackson escapes Aldon Smith but Bowman sacks him. Loss of four. Third and 23.
2:07 Jackson completes a wide receiver screen to Golden Tate, and Bowman and Grant combine to tackle him after three yards. More chippiness, Culliver at the middle again.
2:08 The Seahawks punt to the SF 5 yard line. The Niners defense continues to keep this team in the game. The Seahawks scored easily on the first possession, and even moved the ball effectively on this last one, but they haven’t scored since the first drive. It’s not going to be that easy for them.
2:11 Gore runs up the middle for five yards.
2:11 Smith play fakes and throws a perfect pass to Davis in stride on a crossing route and he drops it – his second drop of the game. Third and five.
2:12 Smith throws to Davis again, this time on a dig over the middle but the defender knocks the pass away.
2:13 Lee punts and C.J. Spillman runs into the punt returner too early for another penalty.
2:16 The Seahawks start this drive at Niners 43 yard line.
2:17 Lynch runs off right tackle for five yards.
2:17 Lynch busts through the middle of the Niners defense for nine yards and a first down. He broke a Justin Smith arm tackle on the play.
2:18 Washington runs off left tackle for five yards.
2:18 Ray McDonald tackles Lynch after one yard. Third and four.
2:19 Jackson completes a pass to Baldwin on a quick out. Culliver was playing too far off and he couldn’t push Baldwin out of bounds quickly enough. First down.
2:20 Jackson play fakes, has all day to throw by nowhere to throw, so he throws it out of bounds.
2:21 Lynch runs off left tackle and gains four. He broke a Bowman arm tackle before Grant brought him down.
2:21 Jackson completes a quick slant to Butler right in Whitner’s face. Gain of seven. First and goal at the seven.
2:22 Lynch runs off left tackle for four more yards. He’s got 80 yards rushing already.
Two Minute Warning
2:25 Lynch runs up the middle for two yards. Third and goal at the one-half yard line. Harbaugh calls his second time out of the first half.
2:26 What are they going to do? You’d have to think they’re going to run it. The two egos. Run, stop the run.
2:32 They review the play and confirm their initial call. Third and goal. Here we go.
2:33 They didn’t go at the Niners and they made the wrong choice. Jackson faked the handoff and rolled left to try to score on his own, but Carlos Rogers knocked him out of bounds at the 1 yard line. They have to go for the field goal and they make it. 10-3 Seahawks. Pete Carroll backed off, he blinked. Harbaugh never would have blinked.
2:35 There’s 1:33 left in the first half and the Niners have two timeouts.
2:36 Looking at the replay, it seems like that was a designed run for Lynch but Jackson just didn’t hand him the ball. Botched play.
2:37 Touchback. Niners will start at their 20 yard line.
2:38 Smith completes a nine-yard pass to Braylon Edwards on the left sideline. Edwards reached up high and made a nice catch.
2:39 Hunter takes an inside handoff up the middle for no gain. Third and one.
2:40 Hunter takes another inside handoff but this time he breaks through the line and picks up 23 yards. First and ten at the Sea 47. Timeout Niners. They have one remaining in this half.
2:41 Seahawks bring a heavy blitz up the middle, Smith throws quick to Edwards on a dig on the left sideline, he throws high and this time Edwards doesn’t even raise his arms.
2:42 Smith gets his pass batted at the line of scrimmage. He was throwing to a covered Crabtree anyway. Third and ten.
2:42 Smith completes a four-yard pass to Davis. Niners call timeout. He should have ran that one himself.
2:44 The Niners go for it. Smith throws high to Kyle Williams on a crossing route, Williams gets his hands on the pass but can’t catch it. Seattle ball at their 43.
2:45 Tarvaris Jackson throws the ball away before Justin Smith sacks him. 15 seconds left in the half.
2:45 Jackson throws another pass away. Nine seconds left.
2:46 Jackson completes a pass to Forsett over the middle 12 yards. Timeout Seattle with two seconds left and the Seahawks at the SF 45.
2:47 Jackson throws it out of bounds once more and that’s the end of the first half.
The Niners need to show they can come back on the road. They did it in Philadelphia months ago, but they couldn’t do it in Baltimore or in Arizona recently. Alex Smith was terrific in the third quarter Monday night and against the Eagles, so there’s precedent for him stepping up his game after halftime.
Alex Smith has 43 passing yards.
3:02 Kyle Williams returns the kickoff to the SF 25.
3:02 Smith play fakes and completes the pass to Crabtree for 27 yards.
3:03 Gore takes a pitch sweep left and gains one.
3:04 Smith looks to Crabtree but he’s tied up at the line of scrimmage, so he looks left and completes a pass to Williams on the left sideline for four yards. Third and five.
3:05 Smith bobbles the snap in the shotgun, rolls left and scrambles for three yards. Fourth and two, and the Niners take timeout. Can’t waste a second-half timeout there.
3:08 They’re going for it. Smith play fakes, rolls right and finds no one, so he buys time and completes a first down pass to Vernon Davis on the right sideline, who looks the ball into his hands and taps his feet down in bounds. Great play all around.
3:09 Gore up the middle for three.
3:09 Smith rolls right and hits Davis on the right sideline again. Gain of sixteen. Great pass and great toe-tap catch.
3:10 Gore follows Iupati and into the end zone for a four-yard touchdown run. What a statement drive for the Niners. 10-10.
3:14 C.J. Spillman and Tavares Gooden tackle Washington at the Sea 15.
3:15 Lynch runs up the middle for two yards.
3:17 Lynch runs up the middle for three. Third and five, and Lynch runs to the sideline.
3:18 Bowman blitzes and hits Jackson as he throws. The pass falls incomplete. The Seahawks punt and Williams returns it 36 yards to the the Sea 48. He is one heck of a young player, and the Niners have all the momentum.
3:19 Gore gets tripped at the line of scrimmage and gains just one.
3:20 Both Staley and A. Davis false start. Second and 14.
3:21 Hunter takes an inside handoff and gains six. Third and eight.
3:21 Smith drops back and steps up immediately, running 12 yards for the first down. Great, gusty play.
3:22 Gore runs up the middle for 11 yards and another first down.
3:23 Gore runs off right tackle for a six yard gain, plus a nine-yard horse collar penalty. First and goal at the nine.
3:24 Gore up the middle for no gain.
3:24 Gore play fakes, rolls right, points to Davis in the end zone and throws across the field to him but Earl Thomas knocks it down.
3:25 Holding on Braylon Edwards. Third and goal from the 13.
3:27 Smith hands off to Hunter inside and he gains two yards. Akers makes the 29-yard field goal. 13-10 Niners.
3:30 Colin Jones tackles Washington at the Sea 18.
3:32 Jackson throws high to Miller over the middle on first down. Incomplete. Plus a facemask penalty on the Seahawks right tackle. First and 17.
3:33 Lynch runs up the middle for three.
3:34 Jackson completes a short pass to Tate and Bowman tackles him right away. Third and nine.
3:35 Jackson throws high again, this time to Baldwin on an out route. Rogers had tight coverage. Seahawks have to punt again. Williams returns another one a long way but Blake Costanzo gets called for block in the back. Bad call – he didn’t do anything wrong. That’s about a 50-yard swing in field position.
3:37 Hunter takes a pitch sweep left for five yards.
3:37 Smith calls another time out to avoid a delay penalty. That’s their second timeout of the second half. Harbaugh yells at Smith, gesturing that he needs to speed things up.
3:38 Gore runs up the middle for five yards and a first down. Can the Seahawks stop the run anymore? It doesn’t look like it.
3:39 Hunter takes a pitch counter to the right for two yards. They stopped that play.
3:40 Hunter runs a stretch run off left tackle for nine yards and another first down. He’s excellent running outside the tackles.
3:41 This is exactly the kind of game the Niners wanted. It’s close, they have the lead, they’re running the ball well and they’ve started to shut down Marshawn Lynch.
3:43 Smith play fakes and has forever to throw, finds no one downfield so he checks down to a wide open Hunter in the right flat. Gain of 11 and a first down.
3:44 Gore up the middle for two.
3:44 Gore tries to run off left tackle but loses a yard. Third and nine.
3:45 The Seahawks bring a huge blitz up the middle, Smith rolls out and throws the ball away.
3:46 Akers makes the 44-yard field goal. 16-10 Niners with 12:42 to play. That’s his 41st field goal of this season, and that breaks the record for most field goals in a season.
3:48 Hey McCloughan! What do you think? And were you really joking?
3:49 Leon Washington gets tackled at the Sea 16.
3:51 Jackson fakes a pass and throws behind Lockette on a crossing route down the field. Incomplete.
3:52 Lynch up the middle for three, and he’s off the field for third down.
3:52 Tarell Brown gets called for pass interference, 27 yard penalty.
3:53 Jackson scrambles for three yards before he’s tackled by McDonald.
3:54 Jackson play fakes and gets sacked immediately by Aldon Smith.
3:55 Jackson completes a 14 yard pass to Obomanu and Goldson tackles him one yard before the first down. They have Marshawn Lynch and they choose not to go for it. Did he quit? Touchback, the Niners start at their 20 yard line with 9:35.
3:57 Smith completes a pass to Davis underneath, and he runs for about 10 yards after the catch to pick up 17 overall.
3:57 Gore takes a pitch sweep right and loses two. That play never works for Gore, only for Hunter. Second and 12.
3:58 Smith avoids pressure and completes a short pass to Bruce Miller on the right sideline for three yards.
3:59 Richard Sherman knocks away the pass to Kyle Williams on a quick slant. Harbaugh wanted pass interference.
4:00 The Seahawks block Lee’s punt and Colin Jones falls on it at the SF 4. First and goal for the Seahawks. Huge momentum swing.
4:01 Lynch bounces out to the left and scores a four yard touchdown. 17-16 Seahawks.
It means nothing that Marshawn Lynch scored the first rushing touchdown against the Niners this season. It came off of a special teams fluke. This is a perfect situation for the Niners. If they’re the team we think they are, they’re going to come right back and win this game. All they need is a field goal, and they have 6 and a half minutes to get it. 49ers, this is your chance.
4:03 I hope Kyle Williams is okay. Say a prayer for Kyle Williams. He slipped on the kick return and he didn’t realize he needed to protect himself. He got crunched by two defenders when he was on his knees.
4:06 Williams walks off the field. Tough guy.
4:08 There’s a penalty because the Seahawks weren’t allowed to hit Williams when he was down. That’s a personal foul, 15-yard penalty.
4:09 On first down Smith throws the ball out bounds, plus Edwards gets called for a ten yard holding penalty. First and 20.
4:10 Hunter up the middle for two yards. Horrible, tentative play call there by Roman.
4:10 Smith throws deep down the left sideline and Michael Crabtree makes a sprawling catch on his back. 41 yard gain. That’s a huge moment in Alex Smith’s career.
4:11 Gore runs a counter up the middle for three.
4:12 Hunter runs off left tackle for one yard. Another horrible play call. Smith makes the best throw of his career and you call two runs to follow?
4:12 Make that three runs in a row. Gore up the middle for three more.
4:13 Akers nails the 39-yard field goal. 19-17 Niners. Successful drive. They have under three minutes to keep these guys from getting a field goal. I say they do it. They have them in check right now and they’re going to win. I don’t think these guys can drive the field and score a field goal against this defense with the game on the line.
4:16 Washington’s tackled at the Sea 19.
4:17 Lynch gains six yards off right tackle on first down.
4:17 Jackson fakes the handoff to Lynch and then throws it to him out of the backfield. Gain of 20. First and ten at the Sea 45.
Two Minute Warning – Seattle has all three timeouts remaining.
4:20 Lynch gains three up the middle.
4:20 Jackson completes a pass to Lynch in the left flat for a four yard gain. Third and three.
4:22 Jackson scrambles, Larry Grant catches him from behind and strips the ball. The Niners recover with 1:07 left.
4:23 Gore up the middle for six. Timeout No. 1 for Seattle.
4:24 Gore up the middle for no gain. Timeout No. 2 for Seattle.
4:25 Smith fakes a handoff, rolls left and gets sacked for a four-yard loss. Timeout No. 3 for Seattle.
4:26 Larry Grant tackles Leon Washington at the Sea 25. 41 seconds left in the game.
4:27 Jackson complete to Forsett for eight yards. Jackson spikes the ball with 23 seconds left. Third and two at the Sea 34.
4:28 Bowman tips the pass away over the middle. Fourth and two.
4:28 Timeout Niners with 18 seconds left.
4:30 Jackson throws the ball out of bounds on fourth down, and the 12-3 Niners win 19-17. This is the best win of the Niners season so far.