Crushed Optimists

We are twin brothers who grew up in Central Washington. This blog is devoted to the life of Seattle sports fans, as well as various other topics that we will espouse for your enjoyment. We could be called another OFFICIAL SEATTLE SEAHAWKS site, but we'll take our uneducated crack at the Mariners, Sonics, and Huskies as well. A Seattle Sports Blog? Must be the land... of crushed optimism!

Saturday, November 19, 2005

NFL Week 11: Hawks at San Francisco

San Francisco 49ers: 2-7
2005 Home Record: 2-3


Quarterback: Matt Hasselbeck (2124 yds, 11 TDs, 7 INTs) vs Ken Dorsey (40 yds, 0 TDs, 0 INTs)
I'm going to state this here at the onset... this will not be an extensive preview. The 49ers have nothing really of note. Take this quarterback preview for example... Matt Hasselbeck is on a roll, and both of his interceptions last week shouldn't have happened. On the other hand, we have Ken Dorsey. Ken Dorsey. Anyone remember how much fun it was to watch Dorsey play quarterback last year? He takes his mighty 40 yards in to do battle with the Hawks. Advantage: Seattle

Running Back: Shaun Alexander (1114 yds, 17 TDs) vs Kevan Barlow (482 yds, 2 TDs)
Kevan Barlow has to be considered one of the bigger disappointments of the past few years for San Francisco. He was given the keys to the offense last year, promptly stunk up the place. Then he "rededicated" himself in the offseason, said he was more explosive, and then has promptly stunk up the place. It's only a matter of time before Frank Gore takes his place, as Gore actually can pick up chunks of yardage on running plays. Here's the major problem... when you have no quarterbacks that can do anything you become a running team. Then when you can't actually run you become a mediocre 2-7 ballclub. For Seattle we have Shaun Alexander. Wonder who might be better? Advantage: Seattle

Receivers: Seattle (230 receiving yards/game) vs San Francisco (101 receiving yards/game)
Were the 1992 Seahawks this bad offensively? Only 101 yards through the air a game? This has a lot to do with the other major disappointment in the past two years, one Brandon Lloyd. Now we have to give them some credit... if Ken Dorsey was the quarterback for the Hawks our stats wouldn't be quite so gaudy. Still, 101 yards is simply pathetic. We are one week away from hopefully having Darrell Jackson back. Until then, Bobby Engram and friends can have fun slicing this defense to shreds. Advantage: Seattle

Offensive Line: Seattle (161 rushing yards/game, 15 sacks) vs San Francisco (98 rushing yards/game, 25 sacks)
Here's a wierd stat. Last week against the Rams we met an offensive line averaging 101 rushing yards/game and had given up 24 sacks. Do the Rams really have a worse offensive line than the 49ers? Answer: no. Remember, the 49ers don't pass the ball much at all, so there are far fewer sack opportunities, and with all those rushes they still can't crack 100 a game. That is not a good offensive line. Now their best lineman is out for this game. Not a good sign. Seattle continues to roll offensively on the backs of our studs up front. They continue to get better and better. I like that we didn't give up a sack last week. Advantage: Seattle

D-Line: Seattle (102 rushing yards/game, 30 sacks) vs San Francisco (117 rushing yards/game, 21 sacks)
The 49ers started off the year well on their defensive line, getting consistent pressure on the quarterback and plugging the gaps against the run. Then they got tired and have been consistently worse since then. The nose tackle, Anthony Adams, is too small to take up enough blockers to let the linebackers run free. Bryant Young is still a warrior, but he is an old warrior and should be on a team that only uses him as a situational rusher. For Seattle, Marcus Tubbs should be back and healthy. In his stead Rocky Bernard had another solid game. I think what I love about our pass rush right now is that it is a complete effort. The pocket is being collapsed by all sides. Would we honestly believe that we could have 30 sacks at this stage with Grant Wistrom only having two? The strength of this group is just one of many pleasant surprises. Advantage: Seattle

Linebackers: Well, if there's a strength to this 49ers squad, it's their linebackers. Julian Peterson and Andre Carter are two fast solid outside linebackers. If they can get consistent pressure on Hasselbeck our offense could sputter. The middle linebackers are slightly below average, but do a decent job plugging holes, as evidenced by the mediocre (but not terrible) rushing yards against this defense averages. We will still be without Jaime Sharper, although we plugged the hole well last week with Leroy Hill and DD Lewis. I'm a little afraid of that youth on the road against a huge underdog. Veterans may be able to focus better on this game than our rookies. I'm not concerned about Lofa Tatupu, but if there's a place for pessimism it's here. Advantage: San Francisco

Secondary: Seattle (211 receiving yards/game, 9 INTs) vs San Francisco (280 receiving yards/game, 8 INTs)
The above statistic is one of the most pathetic things I've ever seen. 280 yards allowed a game? That means that no matter who they are playing the quarterback is having a huge 300 yard day. Now they are without Tony Parrish. Wow. Our secondary did a fantastic job last week against St Louis and we need them to do the same against the 49ers. Remember, they've had a couple of good games at home, against the Rams, Cowboys and Bucs. We need to take away any hope they have of moving the ball down the field. Advantage: Seattle

Special teams: Our special teams are still absurd. The 49ers have one offensive weapon, kicker Joe Nedney. I always give this to the opposing team and see no reason to stop now. Advantage: San Francisco

Prediction: The only concern I have about this game is that it's on the road. San Francisco, as I wrote above, has played fairly well in the friendly confines. We have to use Shaun Alexander as a battering ram, sucking time off the clock and taking any hope away. These are games like against Houston that we must win. Hawks by 15.

posted by Gavin @ 2:09 PM  1 comments


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