Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports



San Francisco 49ers (0–1) vs. Seattle Seahawks (0–1)

Kyle Shanahan gets his first division rival game on the road against the Seattle Seahawks. The Seahawks have won the last six matchups but are coming off a tough road game in which their offense scored zero touchdowns against the Green Bay Packers.

Pass Protection — 49ers quarterback Brian Hoyer never seemed comfortable in the pocket as the 49ers' offensive line allowed four sacks and eight quarterback hits last week. In particular, left guard Zane Beadles was clearly the unit's weakest link. Per Pro Football Focus, Beadles finished with the lowest grade of any guard in Week 1. Whether it's Beadles or newly acquired Laken Tomlinson, the 49ers have a tall task against Seattle's front seven. It seems like Tomlinson is slated to start in his 49ers debut on the road.

Pressure Wilson — Personally, I'd be disappointed if the 49ers get fewer than three sacks on Russell Wilson, considering the talent they have on the defensive line. They should have a prime opportunity to take advantage of a mediocre Seahawks' offensive line. The Seahawks' Rees Odhiambo really struggled in his new role at left tackle, allowing six pressures to the Packers last week. The defense has looked much improved from last year but we still haven't seen a consistent pass rush yet. Per Pro Football Focus, the 49ers only blitzed twice against the Panthers resulting in just seven quarterback pressures, two quarterback hits, and zero sacks.

Play Calling — Shanahan was aggressive — perhaps too aggressive — as the 49ers failed on three fourth down attempts last week to put the defense in tough spots, resulting in six points. Shanahan's play calling works best with an established run game. Carlos Hyde looked good but only carried the ball nine times for 45 rushing yards with the 49ers falling behind early. I'll be intrigued to see how Shanahan adjusts his scheme for the second go-around in regards to execution. The 49ers were penalized 10 times for 74 yards while putting up only 217 yards of total offense.

Jimmy Graham — I think the Seahawks' star tight end is in for a huge day in their home opener. 49ers free safety Jimmie Ward remains limited in practice which means Jaquiski Tartt will likely get the majority of snaps. While Tartt had a nice interception last week, he had some mental errors as well. Tartt whiffed on an earlier play to allow a 40-yard touchdown and later drew a costly late hit penalty. The 49ers' run defense was solid last week allowing just 3.1 yards per carry; Wilson will likely look for Graham in the red zone with this particular matchup.

Legion of Boom — Seahawks rookie cornerback Shaquill Griffin did an excellent job filling in after Jeremy Lane was ejected last week. However, the Seahawks' secondary now faces a new wrinkle this Sunday: Richard Sherman has missed multiple practices this week and might not play. Lane would be slated to take over his spot on the left side while Griffin subsequently takes right. Justin Coleman — acquired via trade with the New England Patriots — would slide into nickel duties. This could create some opportunities for 49ers receivers Marquise Goodwin and Trent Taylor.

Overall Thoughts

While the 49ers are replicating a similar blueprint to the Seahawks in their new 4–3 defense, it's going to take some time. The Seahawks just took a tough loss last week and will be amped up in their home opener. Wilson and Co. get the offense back on track and respond against the rebuilding 49ers in a big way.

Seahawks -14 Under 42
49ers 13 Seahawks 28