The last two visits to Seattle have not been good ones for the San Francisco 49ers and their top flight quarterback, Colin Kaepernick. Both of the games resulted in a somewhat lopsided loss for the 49ers. Kaepernick seemed to struggle in both of them.
The Seahawks have an abundance of athletic players on their defense. K.J. Wright and Bobby Wagner are two very good linebackers that can cover a lot of ground. These players also do a very good job of filling the gaps to stop the running game. Wright is a pretty good player in coverage as well. His size will allow him to matchup well with tight ends. These two players are a part of why the 49ers offense has not been as effective against the Seahawks.
The pass rush was a big factor for the Seahawks as well. Michael Bennett seemed to be in the 49ers backfield often. He finished with one sack and two recorded hits on the quarterback. The Seahawks as a team sacked or put Colin Kaepernick under duress on 13 of his 35 drops which was 37.1 percent. Kaepernick was 1-of-7 for 14 yards on those plays.
Kaepernick has shown a penchant for passing the ball downfield, but that was taken away also. He did not complete a pass thrown 15-plus yards downfield Sunday for the first time in 12 career starts. That was due to the suffocating defense of Richard Sherman. He was attached to Anquan Boldin. Boldin saw his first target at 8:30 of the second quarter. His second target which resulted in his first reception didn’t come until 9:45 of the fourth quarter.
The Seahawks’ secondary took away Kaepernick’s two favorite targets from last week. Boldin and Vernon Davis were held to only nine combined targets. They were able to really limit the 49er receivers and tight ends from getting a free release off of the line. The physical part of Richard Sherman’s game was very evident today. He did.
Earl Thomas is a good of a ball hawking safety as there is. He helps take away the deep ball with his ability to keep all plays in front of him. He gives the corners a chance to take some risks that can lead to an interception.
The 49ers like to pass after a play fake. In order for this to work, the running game has to be effective. Seattle had a smothering defense against the run. Once this happened, the play action pass was not as useful.
Some people use QBR as a way to measure quarterbacks. Using that measurable, you can see that the two games against the Seahawks where his worst games of his career. Kaepernick’s Total QBR was 14.0. That is lower than any other game for Kaepernick.
Ironically, Kaepernick is able to run against the Seahawks. He actually averages 2.2 yards per carry more when the Seahawks and 49ers meet. That’s because of all of the man defense that they use. The yards per pass attempt go down from 9.1 to 5.8.