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5 Observations as 49ers Fall to Seahawks, 37-27

The Seattle Seahawks were off to an unusual start as San Francisco's defense didn't allow Russell Wilson and Co. much opportunity to get things going. Jason Verrett opened the game sniffing out a pass to DK Metcalf that went for a loss of yards. K'Waun Williams recorded his first sack of the season on the ensuing play that helped force a quick 3-and-out. On their second drive, a Mitch Wishnowsky punt pinned Seattle at their own 1 yard line. Seattle gained one first down before their second punt of the day.

Momentum quickly changed in favor of Seattle as their offense caught steam and the Seahawks defense managed to add pressure on Jimmy Garoppolo and the 49ers offense. Here are five takeaways from San Francisco's divisional loss to the Seahawks, as well as updates on several 49ers who left Sunday's contest early.

1. Russ Keeps Russin'

Wilson has been defining his early-season MVP campaign and his impressive performance continued in the divisional matchup against the 49ers. Seattle's franchise quarterback completed 27-of-37 passes for 261 yards, four touchdowns and no interceptions for a 128.3 passer rating. Wilson escaped pressure on several occasions and extended plays with his legs and ability to evade San Francisco's pass rush.

2. Metcalf's Career Outing

Metcalf was relatively unstoppable on Sunday. His size and speed were too much for the 49ers cornerbacks, as the second-year receiver caught a career-high 12 receptions for a punishing 161 yards and two touchdowns. Cornerback Emmanuel Moseley played perfect coverage on another potential touchdown catch for Metcalf that was deflected in the end zone.

3. San Francisco's Mistakes

It was a sloppy first half for San Francisco. Meanwhile, Seattle capitalized off of the 49ers costly mistakes. Botched trick plays, an interception, short field opportunities and a special teams fumble haunted the 49ers offense through the majority of the contest. Seattle scored 13 points off of two 49ers turnovers. San Francisco failed to generate a takeaway after registering five over their previous two contests.

4. Jimmy Garoppolo's Abbreviated Outing

Garoppolo's time was cut short as the quarterback left the game in the third quarter following a sack by rookie pass rusher Alton Robinson. Garoppolo limped to the sideline in obvious pain and was escorted to the locker room shortly thereafter with what was ruled as an ankle injury. Garoppolo had been working through a high-ankle sprain suffered in the first half of the Week 2 contest against the New York Jets. The team will have additional details on the extent of Garoppolo's injury once the 49ers return to the SAP Performance Facility on Monday. 

The quarterback finished the day completing 11-of-16 passes for 84 yards and an interception on a pass intended for George Kittle.

According to ESPN Stats and Info, the Seahawks pressured 49ers quarterbacks on 17 of their 45 (38 percent) dropbacks. That's the highest pressure percentage by a Seahawks defense since Week 6 of 2018 against the Oakland Raiders. 

As of now, Garoppolo's availability could be in jeopardy as the team has a short turnaround for their Week 9 matchup against the Green Bay Packers on "Thursday Night Football."

5. Nick Mullens Re-emergence

Following Garoppolo's injury, the quarterback was replaced by Nick Mullens, who made his first appearance since the 49ers Week 4 loss to the Eagles. Down by two scores, Mullens entered the game and rattled off an 11-play, 79-yard drive that was capped off by a Jerick McKinnon 1-yard touchdown.

The quarterback orchestrated two more touchdown drives with passes to Ross Dwelley and Brandon Aiyuk. Mullens finished the day completing 18-of-25 passes for 238 yards and two touchdowns for a 128.4 passer rating. His passer rating was the second-highest of his career behind his 151.9 rating against the Raiders in Nov. 2018.

Other Notes…

  • Kendrick Bourne caught a career-high eight catches for 81 yards.
  • Aiyuk led the team with 91 yards on eight receptions and one score.
  • Aiyuk and Bourne are the first set of 49ers teammates to both register eight-or-more receptions in a game since Michael Crabtree (10 receptions) and Stevie Johnson (nine receptions) accomplished the feat in Sept. 2014 against the Arizona Cardinals.
  • JaMycal Hasty recorded the first touchdown of his NFL career on the 49ers third drive of the game. On 3rd-and-inches, the rookie was met at the goal line by Seahawks linebacker Bobby Wagner, as the running back stretched the ball over the goal line for the score. He finished the day with a team-high 29 rushing yards on 12 carries.
  • The 49ers run game couldn't get much going against Seattle's defense, amassing just 53 yards on the ground, the unit's lowest output of the season.
  • Kerry Hyder Jr. registered a quarterback hit that forced a Wilson incompletion. He also registered a sack on the day.
  • Kittle exited the game at the top of the fourth quarter after an impressive 25-yard reception from Mullens in between two defenders. Initial X-rays showed no signs of any fractures. Like Garoppolo, the team will reassess the tight end's injury on Monday and his availability for the Week 9 matchup against the Packers.
  • Wide receiver Dante Pettis suffered a shoulder injury on his first kickoff return of the game and did not return.
  • Linebacker Demetrius Flannigan-Fowles suffered a hamstring injury on the opening kickoff and did not return to the game.
  • Tevin Coleman left the game in the first half after re-injuring his knee. Coleman missed the last five games after suffering his initial injury during the 49ers Week 2 win over the Jets.

"He wanted to go back in, we tried, and he just couldn't," Kyle Shanahan said. "I don't know what the deal is for this week. Obviously I'm hoping that he's ready for Thursday, but his knee was re-injured and he couldn't go back in the game."

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