THE FRONT ROW with MARK NELKE: Questions surround Seahawks, 49ers ... and Mariners
"The 49ers scored too soon."
That was the common — albeit hilarious — response last Sunday night, when the Niners left Aaron Rodgers just enough time to win the game for the Packers.
"The 49ers scored too soon."
Excuse me, have you seen us play?
There is no guarantee we would have scored on the next play — or on any play after that.
I think we were a little surprised we even scored on that play — a short pass to the fullback out of the backfield, not even the first option on that play, to maybe set up a play a little closer to the end zone.
Yes, perhaps on the play we accidentally scored on, we could have snapped the ball about 10 seconds later, to leave Rodgers a few less seconds — if we thought we were going to score on that play.
A bigger issue was no pass rush and a prevent defense by the 49ers on the final drive that allowed Green Bay those two big plays to move the Pack into field goal range.
But other than that ...
Sorry, but we're just not good enough to choreograph it so we score at just the right time.
You score when you can — in football, and in, uh, tiddlywinks.
ANYWAY, WE bring this up with today marking the first meeting of the season between the Seahawks and the 49ers.
The Seahawks are 1-2 and coming off two straight losses, and there's a certain feeling of doom and gloom among the fandom — especially with the Rams and Cardinals already at 3-0. Seattle boosters are wondering why their team didn't sign Richard Sherman, who starred with the Seahawks for his first seven seasons in the league.
The 49ers are 2-1 — and the aforementioned few ticks away from being 3-0 — but are already devastated by injuries, particularly at running back and cornerback. And their tight end, arguably their best player, might not play because of ... injury.
San Francisco fans are also wondering why their team didn't re-sign Richard Sherman, who in addition to being their best cornerback, was a heckuva mentor to the other DBs in his three years in the Bay Area.
(Alas the Bucs, the defending Super Bowl champs who probably didn't need a Richard Sherman, of course signed Richard Sherman this week).
SEAHAWK FANS have been bemoaning their team's defense — which has been nowhere close to Legion of Boom-ish standards.
But I can see the Seattle defense getting well this week in Santa Clara — the Seahawks will find a way to put enough pressure on the 49ers, and their defenders often make you pay for catching passes in front of them. And it doesn't take much for a 49er to get hurt.
Offensively, if the Seahawks don't get in their own way, TGRW and his two talented wideouts could carve up the 49ers' depleted secondary, especially if San Francisco can't figure out how to put any pressure on the quarterback.
But if the Seahawks somehow lose, there might begin to be some heat on the Untouchable Pete.
MAYBE THE bigger question is, will any Seattle fans be watching the Seahawks at 1 p.m. today?
Or will they still be watching the Mariners' game, which begins at noon, as the M's try to do something no student high-school age or younger has ever seen them do — advance to the postseason.
Sounds like a day for Picture-in-Picture. Or a second TV in the living room. Or both.
The Mariners definitely score when they can — Friday night being the exception of late — and they're having a lot of fun doing it.
Mark Nelke is sports editor of The Press. He can be reached at 664-8176, Ext. 2019, or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter @CdAPressSports.