SEATTLE – The 49ers are NFC West champions after beating the Seahawks, 26-21, in Week 17 at CenturyLink Field. San Francisco dominated the first half, blanking Seattle and taking a 13-0 lead into halftime.
The Seahawks found life in the second half and came within inches of what would have been an epic comeback. Seattle faced 4th-and-goal from the 49ers 5-yard line with just :12 left in the game. Russell Wilson completed a pass to Jacob Hollister that gained 4.99 yards as the Seahawks tight end was stopped inches short of the goal line by 49ers linebacker Dre Greenlaw.
With the loss, Seattle is now the No. 5 seed in the NFC and will travel to play the Eagles next weekend in the Wildcard Round. San Francisco is the No. 1 seed and will have home-field advantage.
Here’s what you need to know from Sunday night.
1. Wilson’s big second half not enough for Seattle
Wilson was absolutely incredible over the final two quarters. He led three-straight touchdown drives to keep Seattle in the game and had several clutch completions on third down. Wilson finished the game with 233 yards and two touchdowns. He also ran the ball eight times for 29 yards.
On the final drive of the game, Wilson hit John Ursua for an 11-yard reception to convert 4th-and-10. The completion got the Seahawks down to the 1-yard line, but Seattle then took an inexplicable delay of game penalty following a spike that stopped the clock. That error likely cost Seattle the game.
2. Return of the beast
Marshawn Lynch was limited for the most part, but he had three runs that electrified everyone at CenturyLink Field. He had back-to-back runs of eight and 15 yards in the third quarter that set up Seattle’s first score: a 14-yard pass to Lockett.
He then found the end zone himself, leaping his way across the goal line for a 1-yard touchdown run in the fourth quarter.
In all, Lynch carried the ball 12 times for 34 yards and a touchdown. The delay of game penalty cost Lynch a chance at a game-winning 1-yard TD run.
3. No answer for Kyle Shanahan’s offense
After Seattle’s two touchdown drives in the second half, San Francisco responded with touchdown drives of their own: a four-play, 75-yard drive and a seven-play, 75-yard drive. The 49ers averaged 8.3 yards per play on the night.
San Francisco moved the ball with ease the entire night and racked up 398 total yards. Seattle managed to hold the 49ers to two field goals in the first half which kept the Seahawks in the game. Their lone stop of the game was when the 49ers were called for a dubious unsportsmanlike conduct penalty to give Seattle a chance at a game-winning drive.
Raheem Mostert racked up 57 yards and two touchdowns on 10 carries. Deebo Samuel caught all five of his targets for 102 yards. Samuel also scored on a 30-yard touchdown run. George Kittle caught all seven of his targets for 86 yards. Jimmy Garoppolo finished 18-of-22 passing for 285 yards.
Odds and ends:
- Mychal Kendricks (knee) and Jaron Brown (knee) both left the game and did not return.