DK Metcalf, Bobby Wagner lead Seahawks to 37-27 win over rival 49ers

Nov 1, 2020, 2:47 PM | Updated: 6:08 pm

The Seahawks could have lost Sunday’s game against the 49ers without setting off too many alarms.

Seattle entered the game as banged up as they most likely will be at any point this season, facing a tough though equally hurt division opponent, and it wouldn’t have been the worst thing if they had to go into Week 9 at 5-2.

Wagner’s All-Pro day | D’s toughness returns | 710 reaction | Stats

Well, the Seahawks apparently weren’t too worried about playing it safe.

DK Metcalf had a huge day on offense, Bobby Wagner was a one-man wrecking machine on defense, and Seattle handled San Francisco 37-27 to improve its NFC West-leading record to 6-1. Perhaps just as important, they seemed to get through the game without suffering any additional significant injuries.

The Seahawks were without starting running back Chris Carson (foot), starting cornerback Shaquill Griffin (hamstring) and starting defensive end Benson Mayowa (ankle), all who suffered injuries last week in Arizona. Seattle also played its fourth straight game without star safety Jamal Adams, who was a candidate to return from a groin strain this week until illness prevented him from practicing. And in addition to Carson being out, backup tailback Carlos Hyde (hamstring) missed the game, leaving rookie DeeJay Dallas to be Seattle’s main rushing option.

While the Seahawks didn’t do much on the ground, they didn’t need to with Metcalf and quarterback Russell Wilson taking care of business through the air. Metcalf had an impressive catch-and-run for a 46-yard touchdown reception in the first quarter, and he had two scores and over 100 yards by halftime. He finished the game with 12 catches for 161 yards (both career-high totals), and Wilson was 27 of 37 passing for 261 yards, four TDs and no interceptions.

Wagner, the perennial All-Pro linebacker, answered any questions about his play this season with an electric day that included his first two sacks of the season.

Seahawks cornerback D.J. Reed had an interception a day after being activated from the non-football injury list, and Cody Barton caused a fumble that was recovered by Nick Bellore on a 49ers kick return for Seattle’s two takeaways on the day.

Seattle took a 13-7 halftime lead and turned it into a nearly insurmountable 30-7 advantage after a dominant third quarter.

San Francisco finished the game without quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo or star tight end George Kittle, both of whom limped into the locker room early in the fourth quarter. Garoppolo was held in check by Seattle – 11 of 16 passing for 84 yards, no TDs and a pick – but backup Nick Mullens provided the Seahawks with some trouble in the fourth quarter, throwing for 238 yards and two TDs on 18 of 25 passing.

The Seahawks will face the surprising Buffalo Bills (6-2 after beating New England on Sunday) on the road at 10 a.m. next Sunday. Coverage will air on 710 ESPN Seattle and KIRO Radio 97.3 FM beginning with the pregame show at 7 a.m.

Here’s a quarter-by-quarter look at the Seahawks’ win.

First quarter

Seahawks 6, 49ers 0

The Seahawks got off to a shaky start, but the main reason why they’ve been so successful this season was also the reason why they took a lead as the first quarter ended.

The passing game got going inside the final three minutes of the quarter, and DK Metcalf did his best Megatron impression with a 46-yard touchdown reception that was a lot more about what he did after he caught the ball than before.

The run may not be as impressive as when Metcalf caught up with Arizona’s Budda Baker for a tackle last week but it’s still up there.

Fullback Nick Bellore had a big 9-yard catch on third-and-8 and David Moore had a 13-yard gain on a fly sweep run (after starting the drive on the sideline getting a rib injury checked out) along the way to Seattle’s TD, but kicker Jason Myers failed the point after attempt, which was concerning at the time because a missed point in a game where Seattle was thin at several key positions didn’t seem like a great sign.

That strong drive put a forgettable first two series in the rear-view mirror for the Seahawks.

The 49ers got to Metcalf on a short pass for a 3-yard loss on the first play from scrimmage, then used a cornerback blitz to hammer down Russell Wilson for a sack and loss 8 yards, leading to a three-and-out. And while the defense got San Francisco to stall out after the 49ers got into Seattle territory in just two plays, Mitch Wishnowsky’s punt was downed at the 1, making for a tall task for the Seahawks in their second offensive series. Michael Dickson eventually had to punt to the Niners from the Seattle end zone, allowing San Francisco the advantageous position of beginning a drive from just inside midfield.

The Seahawks nearly recovered a fumble to end the 49ers’ second drive, but a replay review reversed it as was ruled a Seattle defender touched the ball while he was out of bounds. Not that it turned out to matter that much – former San Francisco cornerback D.J. Reed picked off 49ers quarterback Jimmy Garappolo on the very next play, giving Seattle the ball at its own 14 to set up Metcalf’s score.

SEA – DK Metcalf 46 pass from Russell Wilson (kick failed), :00

Second quarter

Seahawks 13, 49ers 7

After the Seahawks took the lead at the end of the first quarter, the 49ers’ got their grinding offense on track. San Francisco ran seven times and completed a few short passes on a 14-play, 75-yard touchdown drive – taking over eight minutes off the clock – to briefly take a 7-6 lead.

Seattle responded with a scoring drive of its own, and one that was of a much quicker variety. A long pass to Metcalf (35 yards on first-and-10 from San Francisco’s 47) did most of the work, and after an initial DeeJay Dallas TD run was called back on review, Wilson and Metcalf connected on a 2-yard pass for their second touchdown pass of the day. Myers hit the PAT after missing his first attempt, putting the Seahawks back up 13-7.

An emerging defensive highlight for Seattle was Bobby Wagner, who had nine tackles (six solo), including a sack and two tackles for loss after the first two quarters.

Metcalf ended the half with 102 yards on six catches (seven targets), while Wilson was 13 for 18 for 155 yards, two TDs and no interceptions. The 49ers handled Seattle’s running game before halftime, however, with Dallas at just seven yards on six carries and David Moore (13 yards) and Nick Bellore (5 yards) each adding a rush.

Seattle outgained San Francisco 172-116 in the first half and benefited from the game’s only takeaway to that point.

SF – JaMycal Hasty 1 Yard Rush (Robbie Gould kick), 6:49
SEA – Metcalf 2 pass from Wilson (Jason Myers kick), 3:08

Third quarter

Seahawks 27, 49ers 7

This may be a candidate for quarter of the year for the Seahawks, especially considering the amount of key players Seattle was playing without.

Wagner got it started with his second sack of the day, tying him for the team lead in sacks this season at… um… two, forcing the 49ers into a three-and-out shortly after the second half began and sparking Seattle on both sides of the ball. By the time the fourth quarter started, Seattle had pushed its lead to three scores and was threatening to make it even bigger.

After the 49ers punted away on their first drive, the Seahawks picked up three first downs and converted twice on third down to score on a nine-play, 63-yard drive, ending with Dallas getting his first NFL TD on a 2-yard pass from Wilson.

The offense didn’t even get a chance to catch its breath as Cody Barton nailed 49ers kick returner Dante Pettis (a UW product) to force a fumble recovered by Nick Bellore, giving Seattle a new series starting at San Francisco’s 21. Six plays later, Wilson found Moore just inside the end zone on a 6-yard pass, giving Seattle’s QB his fourth TD of the day.

On the following San Francisco series, Seahawks rookie defensive end Alton Robinson joined Wagner, Jamal Adams and Benson Mayowa in the team lead for sacks at… again… two, making Seattle’s third of the day to force the 49ers into another three-and-out and set the offense up for a chance to turn it into a blowout.

Seattle faced second-and-10 in Niners territory when the third quarter concluded.

SEA – DeeJay Dallas 2 pass from Wilson (Myers kick), 8:02
SEA – David Moore 6 pass from Wilson (Myers kick), 5:51

Fourth quarter

Seahawks 37, 49ers 27

Though leg injuries to Garoppolo and George Kittle sent two key San Francisco offensive players to the locker room early, the Niners still had some fight in them.

Seattle pushed its lead to 30-7 with a 48-yard Myers field goal early in the fourth, but 49ers backup QB Nick Mullens led his team on two straight touchdown drives to narrow the gap. The Seahawks did make a stop of Jerick McKinnon on a two-point conversion try after the second – a play that needed to be reversed on a replay review –to preserve a two-point lead with just over four minutes to go, however.

The Seahawks unofficially put the game on ice with one more score, as Dallas picked up his first rushing TD to cap off an eight-play, 47-yard drive.

Mullens led one last TD drive, hitting Brandon Aiyuk on a 3-yard pass, but the Seahawks recovered the ensuing onside kick to clinch the victory.

SEA – Myers 48 FG, 14:12
SF – Jerick McKinnon 1 run (Gould kick), 9:50
SEA – Dallas 1 run (Myers kick), 3:33
SF – Ross Dwelley 16 pass From Nick Mullens (pass failed), 4:16
SF – Brandon Aiyuk 3 pass From Mullens (Gould kick), 1:52

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DK Metcalf, Bobby Wagner lead Seahawks to 37-27 win over rival 49ers