With the way last season ended, not too many people circled this week’s (4-2) Seattle Seahawks vs. (4-2) San Francisco 49ers Thursday Night Football game on their calendars. What a difference a year – and winning – makes!
Candlestick Park in San Francisco, Calif., will be the site for a terrific NFC West matchup with plenty on the line. Opening kickoff is scheduled for 8:30 p.m. EDT (5:30 p.m. PDT) and it’ll be broadcasted live on NFL Network.
According to the latest NFL odds, the red-hot Seahawks enter this week listed as +7-point underdogs versus a Niners [-7] team that’s just 2-2 in their last 4 games. In addition, the projected OVER/UNDER line for Seattle vs. San Francisco is set at a combined total of 38 points.
At the preset time, the Niners, Seahawks and Cardinals find themselves in a three-way tie atop the NFC West division. The winner of this intradivisional game will take sole possession of first place, at least momentarily, and will be watching the Arizona-Minnesota game very closely on Sunday.
The surprising Seahawks comes into week 7 fresh off a huge 24-23 victory over the New England Patriots. With the game on the line, it took one offensive series for rookie signal-caller Russell Wilson put all the quarterback controversy to bed in the Emerald City.
“I think I’m always comfortable no matter the situation, I think I’m just more experienced,” he said. “Being in those situations you have to trust what you see, you have to be quick with your decisions, but also believe in your decisions and just be decisive with the football.”
The former third-round pick engineering a game-wining drive that culminated in a 46-yard touchdown pass to Sydney Rice with 1:18 left on the game. Wilson would finish the day with 16 of 27 pass completions for 293 yards, 3 scores and upstaged the great Tom Brady.
“If guys didn’t believe in him, I guarantee they believe in him now,” Seahawks safety Earl Thomas said.
For the Niners, they’re coming off a humiliating loss to the defending Super Bowl champion New York Giants last week. In an attempt to avenge last season’s NFC Championship Game loss, Frisco ran into a ferocious Giants defense and a relentless rushing attack.
“It wasn’t a great day for any of us,” said 49ers coach Jim Harbaugh after the game.
Speaking of having a bad day, San Francisco QB Alex Smith is coming off one of the worst performances of his NFL career. With the G-Men’s pass-rush suffocating him, the former first overall pick finished the day connecting on 19-of-30 for 200 yards, 0 touchdowns, 3 interceptions and a miserable QB rating of 43.1.
With Smith struggling, the Niners could get anything going offensively, rushing for 80 yards as a team and more importantly, losing the turnover battle, 0-3.
“It’s tough to speak about any other facet,” Smith said. “We made it tough on the defense.”
Speaking of SF’s defense, they were also a non-factor in this 26-3 pounding, particularly versus the Giants rushing attack. Giants running back Ahmad Bradshaw had a whale of a game, all things considered, rushing for 116 yards and a score on 27 carries.
“You’ve got to dust yourself off and ride,” Harbaugh added. “Right now we have no choice. We have to get to Seattle right quick. We’ve got a football fight coming.”
After looking at last week’s statistics, should San Francisco be listed as 7-point favorites to beat Seattle on Thursday night?
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