For the second year in a row, we'll feature Teams Talk, a 49ers.com column dedicated to special teams and those who play on them. This week, kicker Joe Nedney, checks in to share details about the second matchup of the 2008 season against the Seattle Seahawks.
I happen to know a lot about Seattle's kicker, Olindo Mare because he beat me out for a job in Miami several years ago. He's a power kicker and he gets a lot of distance on his kickoffs. I think he's having a good year this year and what makes him great is that he's really crafty with the ball. Guys like him with a soccer background usually can do a lot of different tricks with surprise onside kicks. He's a threat. He has a strong leg and can make the long distance kicks if he has to.
Their punter Jon Ryan has been a little up and down this year. But, he's a veteran punter, has a good leg and can pin you to a sideline. It should be a good matchup of our special teams against their two kickers.
Two names to know on Seattle's special teams coverage teams are linebacker D.D. Lewis and free safety Jordan Babineaux. In our first meeting, after Manny Lawson blocked a punt, Babineaux picked up the ball and picked up a first down for Seattle, so they have many heads-up players like him on their coverage teams.
Seattle uses two kick returners, cornerback Josh Wilson and undrafted rookie running back Justin Forsett. The rookie was signed before their last game against, so we didn't see him in person the first time around. From watching the film, we have an idea of what to expect from him.
Both Wilson and Forsett are young, but what they lack in experience, they make up for in explosiveness. They both have play-making ability. In my opinion, anytime you have a rookie back there like Forsett, you should get as many guys around him as possible, to try to make him fumble the ball or drop the punt.
Bruce DeHaven, Seattle's special teams coach will have those guys playing hard and it's going to come down to who executes better.
Because we play Seattle twice a year, we know their scheme just as well as they know our scheme, so we know what we're up against. It really comes down to our execution. You can put anyone you want out on the field, but if they don't do things the right way, we're not going to win.
Our coach, Al Everest, will have us prepared and we'll be ready to go out there and get it done.
And who knows, maybe we'll block a field goal and return it for a touchdown for the third consecutive game. Two times was an NFL record, but three would be amazing.
Anytime you get some big plays like that in consecutive weeks, it's like weakening the dam. On field goal attempts, pressure can come from anywhere and they're not going to know where it's coming from.
In our last meeting, I kicked the game-winning field goal and if it comes down to that situation happening again this Sunday, I'll be ready. Like a boy scout, I'm always ready. Being prepared for those moments is a big part of my job. I'm always looking forward to the opportunity to kick field goals, because it means our offense is moving the ball. And if we're putting points on the board, we're doing something right.
I think winning the one-on-one battles, executing and controlling the field position battle in the game are the biggest keys to this game. Special teams, it's not like offense or defense, where you get a number of plays in a row. We come out on the field usually on fourth down and on special teams, we only get one shot at it. So for my job in particular, I try to be one-for-one every time.
I think special teams are a very intricate part of the game and our guys will definitely be ready. I know we will. Al Everest is our coach and he's not going to stand for anything else but for us to be 100 percent ready to play on Sunday.