Seahawks’ Lynch snaps a pair of 49ers’ streaks

SEATTLE — Something had to give.

The Seattle Seahawks came into Saturday’s game with one of the league’s hottest running backs in Marshawn Lynch, while the San Francisco 49ers offered up the league’s top-ranked rushing defense and two very impressive streaks. Prior to Saturday’s game, which would end with a 19-17 49ers victory, San Francisco had not allowed a rushing touchdown this season, and hadn’t allowed a 100-yard rusher in 36 games dating back to November of 2009.

Lynch broke both of those streaks, gaining 107 yards on 21 carries, including a 4-yard touchdown run in the fourth quarter. Seattle’s 126 rushing yards was also the highest total this season against the 49ers, who came into the game allowing 71.5 rushing yards per game.

Of course none of that meant much given the end result.

“It was nice to do that, but it really doesn’t mean too much when we lose,” said Seahawks center Max Unger.

Even so, Lynch’s big game was another encouraging sign for a team that, seven games into the season, had the league’s 31st ranked rushing attack. Since that time, Lynch has rushed for more than 100 yards in six of eight games, and he has now scored a touchdown in 11 straight games, extending his own franchise record. Making the run-game progress even more impressive is the fact that the Seahawks are playing without three of their five starting linemen.

“Today our guys blocked them like the other teams that we’ve played,” Seahawks coach Pete Carroll said. “I thought that was really, really stellar on our guys’ part. Nobody has blocked them like that. … Those guys are really good.”

Just like in practice

Credit backup linebacker Heath Farwell with one of Seattle’s biggest special teams plays of the season.

And credit the Seahawks coaching staff with making it happen from some savvy film study.

Midway through the fourth quarter, Farwell came through the left side of San Francisco’s line to block a 49ers punt. The ball bounced back to the San Francisco 4-yard line where it was recovered by the 49ers, giving the Seahawks a first-and-goal. Lynch scored on the next play to give Seattle a 17-16 lead.

Unfortunately for the Seahawks, the margin did not stand up. San Francisco got a field goal on its next possession, and those points were the eventual winning margin.

“It felt good,” Farwell said of the blocked punt. “I just wish we could’ve won the game. … We needed a big play and I was hoping it was going to be the game winner, but we weren’t able to pull it out.”

From studying game films, Seattle’s coaching staff determined that San Francisco special teams player Blake Costanzo was quick to release from the line of scrimmage to sprint downfield to cover the kick. So they devised a play where Farwell would bluff blocking Costanzo at the line of scrimmage, and then slip past to rush the punter.

The Seahawks practiced the play all week, and with the game on the line “it worked out the way it did in practice,” said Farwell, who is in his seventh NFL season after playing the previous six years with Minnesota. “At that time we were down, so it was a big play in the game. And it would have been an unbelievable feeling if that would’ve been the game winner. But that’s football. It doesn’t always work out that way.”

Memorable moment

It was Ricardo Lockette’s first NFL game and it hardly could have started any better for the rookie wide receiver.

On Seattle’s second play from scrimmage, Lockette ran a deep route up the right sideline and the pass from quarterback Tarvaris Jackson dropped over his shoulder for a 44-yard completion. The play led to an early Seahawks touchdown.

Seattle’s coaches had scripted the game’s first several plays the night before, “so I kind of had it in my mind,” Lockette said. “I knew how I was going to run the route … and I saw the ball in the air at least 1,000 times in my dreams. So when it came time to do it, it was a piece of cake.”

Earlier this year Lockette was signed by the Seahawks as an undrafted free agent out of Fort Valley State in Fort Valley, Ga., a Division II school. He was released on Sept. 3, but re-signed to Seattle’s practice squad the next day. He was added to the 53-man roster on Dec. 14, but was inactive for last week’s game against Chicago.

But with wide receiver Mike Williams breaking his left leg against the Bears, Lockette got his chance on Saturday.

“It was amazing,” he said of his first NFL game and first reception. “A dream come true.”

Injury report

The only injury sustained Saturday, according to Carroll, was a knee strain to receiver Ben Obomanu. While the severity of the injury won’t likely be known until Monday, any injury at receiver is a concern for a team that already has starters Williams and Sidney Rice on injured reserve.

Herald Writer John Boyle: For more Seahawks coverage, check out the Seahawks blog at

Talk to us

> Give us your news tips.

> Send us a letter to the editor.

> More Herald contact information.

More in Sports

Vote for The Herald’s Prep Athlete of the Week for Feb. 26-March 3

The Athlete of the Week nominees for Feb. 26-March 3. Voting closes… Continue reading

Silvertips prove they can contend with WHL’s best

Everett slugged it out with Eastern Conference contender Moose Jaw in an entertaining 8-7 shootout loss over the weekend.

Glacier Peak’s Jo Lee (2) shoots the ball during a 4A semifinal game between Glacier Peak and Richland at the Tacoma Dome on Friday, March 1, 2024 in Tacoma, Washington. Glacier Peak fell, 70-59. (Annie Barker / The Herald)
Five locals named to state basketball all-tournament teams

Everett senior Alana Washington and King’s sophomore Kaleo Anderson led the way with first-team selections.

Seattle Mariners' Dominic Canzone looks for a pitch during a spring training baseball game against the Oakland Athletics, Saturday, March 2, 2024, in Peoria, Ariz. (AP Photo/Lindsey Wasson)
Dominic Canzone ranks high on the list of Mariners’ top breakout candidates

The team is bullish on the bulked-up outfielder’s abilities.

FILE - Denver Broncos quarterback Russell Wilson (3) throws during the first half of an NFL football game against the Detroit Lions, Dec. 16, 2023, in Detroit. The Broncos told Wilson, Monday, March 4, 2024, that they are going to release him next week, just 18 months after signing the Super Bowl-winning quarterback to a five-year, $242 million contract extension. (AP Photo/Duane Burleson, File)
Broncos inform Russell Wilson they’ll release him

Denver will take a record $89 million hit in dead cap charges over the next two seasons.

State basketball roundup for Saturday, March 2

State basketball roundup for Saturday, March 2: (Note for coaches/scorekeepers: To report… Continue reading

Richland’s Landen Northrop (1) shoots the ball during a 4A semifinal game between Glacier Peak and Richland at the Tacoma Dome on Friday, March 1, 2024 in Tacoma, Washington. Glacier Peak fell, 70-59. (Annie Barker / The Herald)
Glacier Peak boys fade late against Richland in 4A state semifinals

An 11-0 closing run by the Bombers hands the Grizzlies a 70-59 loss.

Mead’s Teryn Gardner (24) moves with the ball during a 3A semifinal game between Snohomish and Mead at the Tacoma Dome on Friday, March 1, 2024 in Tacoma, Washington. Snohomiosh fell, 56-50. (Annie Barker / The Herald)
Snohomish girls get rolling too late, fall to Mead in 3A state semifinals

Snohomish makes a valiant second-half push, but comes up short 56-50 against the well-balanced top seed.

State basketball roundup for Friday, March 1

State basketball prep roundup for Friday, March 1: (Note for coaches/scorekeepers: To… Continue reading

Seattle Mariners relief pitcher Matt Brash delivers during the fifth inning of a baseball game against the Houston Astros, Sunday, Aug. 20, 2023, in Houston. (AP Photo/Kevin M. Cox)
Mariners get relieving injury update on Matt Brash

The hard-throwing reliever won’t need surgery. Plus, updates on injuries to Gregory Santos and Luis Urias.

Washington quarterback Michael Penix speaks during a press conference at the NFL football scouting combine in Indianapolis, Friday, March 1, 2024. (AP Photo/Michael Conroy)
Michael Penix Jr. confident he’s answered concerns at NFL combine

Varying national reports have stated the UW quarterback has impressed teams in formal meetings

Snohomish junior Tyler Gildersleeve-Stiles hits the floor trying to get the ball during a WIAA 3A Girls Basketball quarterfinal against Arlington on Thursday, Feb. 29, 2024, at the Tacoma Dome in Tacoma, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
Snohomish girls lock down Arlington, advance to 3A state semifinals

The Panthers run away a 45-25 victory in a rubber match between the Wesco rivals.

Support local journalism

If you value local news, make a gift now to support the trusted journalism you get in The Daily Herald. Donations processed in this system are not tax deductible.