Week 15. Seahawks vs. 49ers, round two. Alrighty then.
Quarterback injuries notwitstanding, the 49ers have been firing on all cylinders this season. With a 9-4 record, they currently hold the top spot in the NFC West. They’ve got a mean and nasty defense, arguably the best in the league. They also have an extremely strong running game, a bane of the Seahawks front seven. Because of the aforementioned injuries, Brock Purdy has taken the reins as signal caller for the team. However, he too is now injured and questionable for the game. Josh Johnson would be next man up in Purdy’s absence. But as nutty as this sounds, the quarterback situation doesn’t seem to matter much. They’re that good.
By all accounts, this could be a miserable night for the Seahawks and the 12’s. That said, it would be totally on-brand for this kooky and unpredictable team to lose to the likes of the Raiders and the Panthers and then turn around and beat the 49ers. Weirder things have happened. News broke today that Kenneth Walker III will be back in action for the game. That’s one positive.
I could put defending the run and running the ball as bullets on my wish list once again like I’ve been doing for weeks. But at this point, it really would be redundant. So, let’s make those a given for all games here on out. For this week’s list, my asks are slightly different. Here you go:
- Healthy players, on both teams. Injuries are one of the few certainties in professional football. It’s a violent sport, sometimes moving at lightning speed. Some injuries are minor. Some end seasons. Some end careers. This year seems to be particularly brutal for injuries. In the NFC West alone, three of the four teams have lost their starting quarterbacks due to injuries. This is just a snapshot. Not to be simplistic, but any game, win or lose, that we get through without an injury is a blessing that should never be taken for granted.
- Dignity for the Seahawks defense. It is hard enough to be struggling. But to do so on the national stage and under the merciless scrutiny of sports media and fans has got to be excruciating. This is especially so when the struggle is prolonged. We’ve seen this group rise up and punch back. I’d love to see that again.
- Fun. Football is a game after all. I hope every Seahawk player has a rollicking good time out there. May their game be infused with good humor, high energy and bullet-proof joy. And may the 12’s also embrace the fun factor, scream until we’re dizzy and be grateful for this team we love so much.
Players to watch this week: Seattle defense. They’ve been eviscerated by the press. They’ve been ridiculed. They’ve been embarrassed. It’s not just about defending the run anymore. It’s about defending their reputation.