The Seahawks fell to the 49ers in a distasteful smackdown at Lumen Field on Thursday Night Football last week. Since that loss, procrastination’s had a grip on me. Coming up with post-game thoughts has been an uncharacteristic struggle. We’ve been running over the same old ground–or not running to be more accurate–for weeks now. There comes a point where there is nothing lest to say, or at the very least, no new way to tell the story. But here we are. Most of the game was agony, but there were a few glimmers of good, even ecstasy from thanks to a unique fan experience. So, I’m going to run with these.
- Injuries. The most severe were to Tyler Lockett (broken finger/hand) and Bryan Mone (torn ACL). Mone, of course, is out for the season. ACL injuries are major and take a long time to heal and rehab. News came out just today that Lockett underwent hand surgery on Monday and that the procedure went “perfectly.” The timeline for his return is still unknown, but he may be back before the season is over.
- Offensive play was offensive. The Hawks simply could not get it done against the beastly 49ers defense. Geno was under pressure all night long. He got sacked three times and got lucky that a pick-six was called back due to a roughing penalty on Nick Bosa, 49ers monster defensive end. Travis Homer had a critical fumble, which resulted in a 49ers recovery and touchdown two plays later. The score was 14-3 at the half, already out of reach in my mind. Also, the Hawks were still unsuccessful in getting the run game going. K-9 only ran for 47 yards. Total yards were 77. Ouch.
- This loss puts the Hawks at 7-7. This is better than we expected going into the season, but the four-game winning streak in the middle made us hungry for more and delusional enough to think we’d get it. Our playoff chances are now significantly compromised and, to a large extent, beyond our control.
- The fan breakdown at Lumen Field was easily 50% Seahawks-50% 49ers. It almost didn’t feel like a home field advantage. I also noticed a significantly high volume of opposing team fans at the Raiders and Broncos games as well. For whatever reason, 12’s aren’t showing up. SHAMEFUL. Luckily, most of the 49ers fans I encountered weren’t bad. A lot of 12’s loathe 49er fans. I think this has a lot to do with shenanigans on social media. As for in-person, Raider fans were most odious, followed closely by Bronco fans. The 49er fans in attendance last week weren’t even close to those levels of obnoxiousness.
- The defense showed some improvement. Yeah, Quandre Diggs dropped a potential interception. And yeah, they struggled to contain George Kittle, Niners tight end and perhaps one of the most entertaining figures in football. But overall, they kept the 49ers to 21 points. Thanks to defensive play, it wasn’t the blowout so many predicted.
- Jason Myers was on point, kicking 51 and 38 yard field goals.
- Field passes. My friend Alma is a bad ass, and thanks to her, we scored field passes for this game. These gained us access to the Seahawks sidelines, at roughly the 30 yard line. From there, we were able to watch both teams warm-up and to bask in dizzying proximity to our heroes. An enormous bonus was seeing Richard Sherman, my all-time favorite football player who is now part of the Thursday Night Football broadcast team. Richard and I have had some cool exchanges on social media in years past, and he was responsible for an astronomical, albeit brief, spike in readership here. His smile and wave to the fans made my evening. We soaked up everything: DK Metcalf doing agility drills, Pete Carroll throwing a football back and forth with a player, John Schneider walking around. I checked out the infamous blue injury tent and took a peek at the instant replay monitors. We chatted it up with lots of cool people and snapped photos in the endzone. This was the closest I’ll ever get to realizing my dream as a sideline reporter. It was 100% pure ecstasy. I was so fucking blissed out, the loss didn’t even phase me.
The Seahawks take on the Chiefs on Christmas Eve. This game will be super tough. It will also be cold- weather forecasts predict a high of 16 degrees in Kansas City that day. It’s probably prudent not to expect some kind Christmas miracle for this one, as lovely as it is to contemplate. The Chiefs are 11-3. And there’s that whole Patrick Mahomes thing. Still, my plan is to turn on the holiday lights, cozy up with a cup of coffee and settle in for whatever may be.