The Seahawks defense stayed hot and paved the way for Russell Wilson and the Seahawks to beat the 49ers, 17-7, on a chilly day at CenturyLink Field.
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The win was Seattle’s fourth-straight and 10th this season, as they improved to 10-4 to remain one game behind the 11-3 Arizona Cardinals in the NFC West.
Seattle has now won seven of their last eight games after starting the season 3-3.
The 49ers, meanwhile, dropped to 7-7 on the season and were officially eliminated from playoff contention.
Seattle’s defense, which has now allowed 27 points in their last four games, dominated the 49ers offense, sacking Colin Kaepernick six times while allowing only 245 yards of total offense. They also held the 49ers to 6 of 15 on 3rd down efficiency.
Both teams’ defenses stepped up early in the game. Seattle got the first points of the game with three minutes left in the first quarter when Steven Hauschka nailed a 38-yard field goal to give the Seahawks a 3-0 lead. It was his 29th of the season, and he has converted 91 percent of his field goals this season.
The 49ers answered with an 11-play, 85-yard drive that came down to 4th-and-1 from the Seahawks 10-yardline.
Jim Harbaugh made the gutsy decision to go for it and it paid off big time. Frank Gore carried the ball around the blitz and scored a touchdown to make it a 7-3 San Francisco advantage early in the second quarter. Gore was silenced for much of the game, taking 11 carries for only 29 yards before leaving the game with a concussion in the third quarter.
Dec 14, 2014; Seattle, WA, USA; Seattle Seahawks linebacker K.J. Wright (50) celebrates after sacking San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick (7) at CenturyLink Field. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports
The Seahawks re-took the lead in the third quarter when Marshawn Lynch walked the ball in from four yards out to make it a 10-7 game. Lynch had another productive day, rushing 21 times for 91 yards.
Then in the fourth, Paul Richardson caught his first NFL touchdown on a slant route in the end zone to give the Seahawks a 17-7 lead. He had three catches for 30 yards.
That score was controversial as it came after a personal foul penalty in which a 49ers player hit Wilson in the chest and drove him into the ground, something that didn’t look too bad on the field but ended up giving the Seahawks a first down deep in San Francisco territory.
Both teams were called for penalties though, some questionable, others obvious.
The Seahawks were flagged seven times for 50 yards, the 49ers were docked eight times for 78 yards. Most of Seattle’s penalties were for false starts and offsides, but the 49ers had three personal foul penalties.
The 49ers didn’t give up, though, down 10 points early in the fourth quarter.
They put together a seven-minute, 14-play drive that went across midfield, but the Seahawks defense forced a 4th-and-short and stepped up to force the 49ers to turn the ball over on downs.
The Seahawks had a chance to really put it away there, but Wilson was sacked twice on the drive and Seattle had to punt it away. Nearly non-existent much of the day, the Seahawks offensive line allowed Wilson to get sacked five times.
But the Seahawks defense stepped up once again on San Francisco’s next possession, forcing a four-and-out from the 49ers to give Seattle’s offense the ball with 2:32 left. They were able to run out the clock from there and capture the season sweep of the 49ers.
Wilson finished the day 12 of 24 for 168 yards a touchdown and an interception. He also ran the ball five times for 27 yards.
Jermaine Kearse had a big day on the offense, hauling in a team-high five catches for 78 yards.
Kaepernick threw for 141 yards and is now 1-5 in his career against the Seahawks.
Next on Seattle’s agenda is a rematch with the division-leading Arizona Cardinals (11-3) in Glendale, Ariz., where the Seahawks hope to play again in Super Bowl XLIX.
That game kicks off at 5:30 p.m. PT on NBC’s Sunday Night Football.