Game Predictions & Player Projections - SF vs. SEA

David Dorey, @DMDorey

Prediction: SF 13, SEA 24 (Line: SEA by 9.5)

UPDATE: Thomas Rawls did not practice this week and is not expected to play because of his shin injury. That makes Christine Michael the clear primary back in this plus situation. Tyler Lockett was listed as questionable and was limited in practices because of sore knee but is expected to play.

The 1-1 49ers come off a drubbing in Carolina where any positives from Week 1 were erased. The 1-1 Seahawks return home to figure out why they cannot beat the Rams and if Marshawn Lynch accidentally took the keys to the offense with him when he left. This should be a big win for the Seahawks but then again, they should have scored more than one touchdown by now.

The Seahawks swept the 49ers in 2015, winning 20-3 in San Francisco and later 29-13 in Seattle.

San Francisco 49ers

1 LA 28-0 10 @ARI ---
2 @CAR 27-46 11 NE ---
3 @SEA --- 12 @MIA ---
4 DAL --- 13 @CHI ---
5 ARI --- 14 NYJ ---
6 @BUF --- 15 @ATL ---
7 TB --- 16 @LA ---
8 BYE --- 17 SEA ---
9 NO ---      
News | Statistics | Roster
vs Rush Catch Pass
RB Jerick McKinnon 30 1-10
WR Pierre Garcon 2-30
WR Marquise Goodwin 2-40

Pregame Notes: The Chip Kelly era is posting more points than last year but two weeks in and the defense has dramatically different results. This is a work in progress and while Week 1 exposed how bad a road team the Rams were, the next Sunday showed why the Panthers went to the Superbowl and not the 49ers. After this week the 49ers get into the soft part of the schedule with only one more road game until Week 10.

QUARTERBACK : Blaine Gabbert is holding off Colin Kaepernick for now but last week he completed only 17 of 36 passes and was greatly aided by trash time yards and scores. The only time a receiver has turned in more than 61 yards was when vance McDonald scored a 75-yard touchdown on his only catch last week. Without that, Gabbert is back to having two weeks with only around 170 passing yards.

RUNNING BACK : Carlos Hyde was impressive in the opener when he ran for 88 yards on 23 carries and scored twice. But he was held to only 34 yards on 14 runs by the Panthers. Shaun Draughn never has more than around 20 yards but that comes off Hyde's totals. Neither back is used much as a receiver and that decreases their fantasy value, especially in games such as this where the rushing effort isn't going to be enough.

WIDE RECEIVER : Torrey Smith caught the only touchdown by a wideout and he finished with 55 yards on three catches despite getting a team high 10 targets. Jeremy Kerley started out with seven receptions for 61 yards but was held to only 29 yards on three catches in Carolina. This remains a dink-n-dunk passing scheme and none of these wideouts are scoring or totaling much yardage. That is not likely to change anytime soon with a tough schedule the next few weeks.

TIGHT END : Vance McDonald owns two of the three passing touchdowns. He only managed 14 yards on two catches in the opener and last week had only one - a 75-yard score. If he fails to score a touchdown his fantasy stock plummets since he is only getting a couple of targets per game.

MATCH TO THE DEFENSE: The only touchdown allowed by the Seahawks was a short run by Ryan Tannehill. They held Todd Gurley to only 51 yards on 19 carries last week so expect Carlos Hyde to again turn in low stats. There is no 49er that is a must start in Seattle against an 0-2 team that needs a win. Bench them all.

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points SF 14 17 28 11 19 7
Preventing Fantasy Points SEA 5 3 2 4 13 18

Seattle Seahawks

1 MIA 12-10 10 @NE ---
2 @LA 3-9 11 PHI ---
3 SF --- 12 @TB ---
4 @NYJ --- 13 CAR ---
5 BYE --- 14 @GB ---
6 ATL --- 15 LA ---
7 @ARI --- 16 ARI ---
8 @NO --- 17 @SF ---
9 BUF ---      
News | Statistics | Roster
SEA vs SF Rush Catch Pass
QB Russell Wilson 10 260,2
WR Doug Baldwin 6-80,1
WR Tyler Lockett 4-60
PK Sebastian Janikowski 2 FG 2 XP
PK Jason Myers 2 FG 3 XP

Pregame Notes: Nothing wrong with a defense that allowed an NFL low 19 points after two games. But the offense is second only to the Rams with just 15 total points and one touchdown scored. For an offense that ended 2015 with uncharacteristically great passing stats, the Seahawks are now unable to generate a touchdown drive. And the opponents have only been the Dolphins and Rams. Heading to New York to face the Jets defense is not going to help any next week.

QUARTERBACK : Russell Wilson is nursing a sore ankle but says he will play this week. He is speculated to have a high ankle sprain which would explain why he has only rushed for around 15 yards per game and has not shown his normal mobility. Wilson is only 5-11 and he is at his best when he can move around and find his receivers. He's too small to just stand there.

RUNNING BACK : This is still a mess. Thomas Rawls reclaimed his starting spot last week but then totaled a seven yard loss on his seven carries before leaving with a leg contusion. Were it not for his 15 yards on three catches, he would have had a negative fantasy score. Christine Michael was clearly better rushing for 60 yards on ten carries. Rawls is expected back but their respective workloads are in question since even HC Pete Carroll glowed about Michael after the game. I will assume a split between the two but either Rawls has to improve or Michael is certain to take the bigger share.

WIDE RECEIVER : Doug Baldwin caught nine passes for 92 yards and the lone touchdown back in the season opener but suffered back spasms and a twisted knee against the Rams. His MRI was negative and he is expected to return this week. Tyler Lockett missed half of the Rams game with a sprained knee but ended with 99 yards on four catches for his only decent showing of the year. Having both starting wideouts banged up last week was one reason for the lack of success. Back at home versus the 49ers should prove much better as long as both receivers are healthy.

TIGHT END : Jimmy Graham played almost all of the snaps last week and ended with three receptions for 42 yards. Graham expressed confidence in his knee and contribution to the team. As much as the offense struggles, upping his contribution would be welcomed.

MATCH TO THE DEFENSE: This is a time for the Seahawks offense to put it all together and they gave up 353 yards and four passing scores just last week to the Panthers in their only other road game. The defense is solid versus the run and not allowed any rushing scores but they did give up 100 yards to Fozzy Whitaker just last week. The split between Christine Michael and Thomas Rawls is difficult to nail down so both are only moderate plays with as much chance of underperforming as they do having any decent game.

This is a defense that gave up 122 yards and a score to Greg Olsen. Graham won't explode like that but he should be a safe play for moderate yardage points and a chance for a touchdown.

Baldwin is a good start here and should - knee willing - turn in a good game that could end up big. Tyler Lockett is less certain and in the end, it all depends on the health of Wilson, Baldwin and Lockett.

 

RANKS (1-32, 1 = BEST) TEAM QB RB WR TE PK DEF
Gaining Fantasy Points SEA 29 24 19 24 26 21
Preventing Fantasy Points SF 18 4 18 24 16 28

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