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49ers Top Seahawks to Win NFC West Title

Week 17’s matchup between the San Francisco 49ers and Seattle Seahawks had high stakes. The winner is crowned NFC West Champion while the loser falls to a Wild Card playoff position. For the 49ers, the outcome made the difference between the number one seed in the NFC and the five seed. 

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Rookie Dre Greenlaw ensured his team did not fall into the latter.

Goal-Line Stand

Up by five and forcing a fourth and goal for Seattle, San Francisco needed one more defensive stop to secure prime playoff positioning. Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson found tight end Jacob Hollister across the middle and delivered a strike. Hollister still needed another yard to score, but Greenlaw had other ideas.


“I just made a tackle my coaches and teammates could be proud of,” Greenlaw said after the game. “I’m thankful to be able to make the play”. Greenlaw finished his day with a team-leading 13 total tackles.

The win gives the 49ers a 13-3 regular-season record, their best since 2011, as well as the top seed in the NFC playoffs. 

Rookie Caps Sensational First Season

The 49ers receiving core had question marks at the start of the year. That’s why John Lynch went out and acquired Emmanuel Sanders. However, rookie Deebo Samuel stepped up all season long, including in the biggest game of the year.

Samuel led the way for 49ers receivers on Sunday night, hauling in five catches for 102 yards. He also carried the ball twice for 33 yards, including this shifty touchdown scamper.


San Francisco fans have much to be excited for regarding Samuel’s future in the Bay Area. His 802 receiving yards is second all-time for 49ers rookies, right behind Jerry Rice’s 1985 campaign.

Jimmy G

If you told me Jimmy Garoppolo would only complete 18 passes in this game, I’d assume the 49ers would be in some trouble. Instead, Garoppolo capped his first full season as a starter with one of the most accurate performances of his young career.

Jimmy finished his day going 18 of 22 through the air for 285 yards. Despite no touchdown passes, his control of the offensive tempo and ability to avoid turnovers sustained 49ers drives and kept them in position to win this game. This first-quarter pass to George Kittle on third down is a prime example of how accurate Garoppolo was this game.


His second half against Seattle’s defense was one of the best we’ve seen from a quarterback this season.

“It’s pretty incredible, just from the start of the season and all the hearsay about our team and what we were going to do, and then to come out here and get the one seed, it’s a pretty nice feeling,” the quarterback said in his post-game press conference. “It’s a step in the right direction but we still have a long way to go”.

Having an Answer

Garoppolo’s composure could be summed up in one drive from Sunday night. Following a Marshawn Lynch touchdown plunge, the Seahawks cut the 49ers lead to 19-14. Garoppolo, however, would answer. 

He found George Kittle and Deebo Samuels on a pair of big plays to quickly get his offense down the field. The drive helped quiet an absolutely shaking Century Link Field. Raheem Mostert put the finishing touches on the drive, finding the endzone on the ground from 13 yards out and making it a two possession game again. 

We’ve seen many teams fall victim to the raucous atmosphere in Seattle before. Kyle Shannahan’s team deserves a lot of credit for maintaining composure and always finding a way to counter the Seahawks punches.

By the Numbers

Garoppolo completed his first full season in the NFL as a starting quarterback. His stats for the season look like this: 329 of 476 passing (69%), 3,978 yards, 27 touchdowns, 13 interceptions, and a 102.5 quarterback rating. He turned in a multitude of dynamite performances all season long, especially on Sunday when it counted the most. 

Familiar Feeling

Richard Sherman has walked out of Seattle with a divisional championship shirt and cap plenty of times before. Only this time, it was done in a San Francisco 49ers uniform. 

Sherman did not comment about the win meaning anything extra over his former team or anything of that sort. His post-game comments were littered with love and respect for his current teammates and looking ahead to the larger task at hand. 

Safe to say the win had to be extra sweet for the former member of “The Legion of Boom”.

He has been a key component of this top-tier San Francisco defense all season long. Among cornerbacks, he finishes 2019 with the lowest yards allowed per coverage snap according to Jeff Deeney of Pro Football Focus. 

Sherman has been one of the most dominant cornerbacks of the past decade, and his leadership this season has fueled the 49er’s defense to become one of the best in the NFL.

Looking Ahead

As mentioned, the win spoils San Francisco with riches. They secure a first-round bye and will await the lowest seed remaining in the NFC from Wild Card weekend. 

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