Today is National Draft Day:

Week 2: 49ers-Seahawks matchup analysis

The SportsXchange

San Francisco 49ers (1-0) at Seattle Seahawks (1-0)

Sunday, 8:25 p.m. ET, at CenturyLink Field, Seattle - TV: NBC

*TV announcers: Al Michaels, Cris Collinsworth, Michele Tafoya

*Keys to the game: The Packers focused on taking the read-option away from Colin Kaepernick in Week 1, so the 49ers quarterback put his strong arm on display with a 412-yard passing performance. He has developed quick chemistry with WR Anquan Boldin and while the Seahawks boast one of the league's best secondaries, Seattle wasn't able to generate much pressure at Carolina last week without blitzing. The Seahawks' offense also sputtered out of the gate. If Seattle can't run the ball effectively, the offensive line can be overwhelmed quickly in pass protection. The Panthers did an effective job preventing QB Russell Wilson from escaping the pocket, and teams with disciplined defensive ends can force him to throw from between the tackles, where Wilson's height becomes a factor in finding clear passing lanes.

*Matchup to watch - 49ers WR Anquan Boldin vs. Seahawks CB Richard Sherman: Both rely far more on technique and physicality than straight-line speed. Sherman plays a lot of man coverage, and his ability to handle Boldin will be critical in allowing the Seahawks to steer more resources toward handling TE Vernon Davis.

*Player spotlight - Seahawks DE Cliff Avril: Avril (hamstring) is expected to make his season debut, and if he's able to apply heat on Kaepernick it will allow defensive coordinator Dan Quinn to dial back on blitzes and make Seattle's zone coverages more effective.

*Fast facts: The Guinness Book of World Records will have an official on hand as the Seahawks' fans attempt to register the loudest crowed roar in history. ... 49ers OLB Aldon Smith has 35 sacks, the most in NFL history through the first 33 games of a career.

WHO WILL WIN AND WHY

Seattle enjoys one of the biggest home-field advantages in the NFL, and 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick struggled in his first start there in 2012, a 42-13 rout. The Seahawks play fast and aggressive at home, but the defensive line has taken a step backward and the 49ers have too many big-play options.

*Our pick: 49ers 30-23

Instantly join a new league.

League type:
Free Yahoo League
League size:
10 players
Draft time:
Aug 30 9:00 am
View Comments (6)