2022 Week 2 Game Recap: 49ers 27, Seahawks 7 (by Ross Jacobs)
The 49ers are a good team. The Seahawks are a really bad team. That pretty much sums up the game. This was never close or in any kind of doubt. For the 49ers a lot changed here and I'll cover that below. They should be relatively fine, pretty much the same team as last year. For the Seahawks...it's going to be a long year. They have a brutal schedule and simply aren't going to win many games. The defense is bad and the offense is worse.
So obviously the big news from this game was the Trey Lance injury. At first it was believed he was done for the year, but reports have come out since that he might actually be back on the field as early as week 12. That's optimistic but the playoffs certainly seem in reach. If and when that happens we'll have a whole other discussion about his viability and if he'll even get to play over Garoppolo, but I'll save that for another day. There are just too many angles to talk about here.
The first thing I have to say for anyone out there under the delusion that this team is better with Jimmy than Trey...you are wrong and I have no idea what game you are watching. There have been “anonymous” reports from supposed Rams insiders saying the team is better with Jimmy and blah blah blah. It's all garbage. All those preseason worries about Trey's inconsistency...seriously, have you ever watched Jimmy play? Watch him here against the Seahawks. Go on. I'll wait. Done? He's awful.
Against one of the worst defenses in the NFL, Jimmy completed only 13 of 21 passes for 154 yards 1 TD/0 INT and let me tell you, that 0 INT number is a complete fluke because I counted at least 3 balls that should have been picked off. He constantly throws behind receivers or 6 feet over their heads, forcing guys to make miraculous catches on simple slant routes. His very first pass was play action and he had zero pressure in his face but decided to throw the ball into double coverage and the ball sailed 10 yards over the receivers head and down the field. Geno Smith (24-30 for 197 yards, 0 TD/1 INT) is as good a QB as Jimmy is! Think about that for a second.
You want to know how biased NFL coverage is? All I've heard all week long is “the 49ers just win games with Jimmy” (usually said with caveman grunting sounds). Trey got bashed for losing a game in a monsoon and Jimmy got to play against the sorriest team in the entire league. Context people. There is no world where Jimmy is a better QB than Lance, not now, not ever.
And yet...the reality of the situation is not the only thing that matters. Unfortunately peoples' perceptions matter too, right or wrong, and in this case it seems that many players on the 49ers prefer Jimmy to Lance just like the public. Last week I noticed the offensive linemen wouldn't help Lance off the ground after he got hit. I brushed it off. This week after an injury where he went down screaming in pain...same thing. And yet there those very same linemen (McGlinchey is the most notable in all this) were celebrating ecstatically with Jimmy after his TD throw (one that a child could have made).
I'm not saying the team is on Jimmy's side and won't support/block for Lance. What I am saying is there is clearly a strained dynamic within that organization due to ongoing support for Jimmy and that falls squarely on the shoulders of Kyle Shanahan and John Lynch. Jimmy should have been cut/traded months ago. The contract didn't matter. The injured shoulder didn't matter. They needed to galvanize this team behind Lance and they didn't do it. They allowed this thing to fester and they very well might pay for it down the road. Yes, they look like geniuses right now because of the Lance injury but what happens after? If Jimmy wins a bunch of games the team might revolt when Trey comes back, whether that's this year or next. Lance is the far more talented player and should be the future, but they have put this thing severely in doubt by their handling of Jimmy (and the stupid ass way they keep runner power plays to Trey but that's a whole different discussion).
What this all boils down to is gross mismanagement of the players and it's a repeated pattern with this front office.
Fantasy Player Notes:
– So in a week where RC and I are touting Jordan Mason as a possible breakout candidate he gets exactly 0 touches because of course he did...this is what I'm talking about with Kyle Shanahan. He has his head so far up his own ass. It's kind of like that symbol of a snake eating its own tail. Kyle doesn't like being told what to do and with all of the SF media pushing him to play Mason it's only natural that he completely rebelled even though he's the one that wanted to keep Mason on the 53 to begin with.
Well the football gods might force his hand anyways. TDP has a high ankle sprain and will be gone for several weeks. Marlon Mack was signed but he's a shell of himself after that Achilles injury. I swear if Kyle plays Mack over Mason the way the idiot Ravens pushed Freeman over Ty'Son Williams last year...
The good news is, during a post game discussion, Shanahan was asked about the RB situation and he said of Mason basically “He has to step up now. I thought he had his best week of practice last week and his best special teams game”. He knows Mason has to play to some degree.
The bad news is not two seconds after saying that he called Jeff Wilson a stud and gushed about his tough running etc.
So my two cents is...I don't know what that maniac is going to do. Wilson is running hard yeah, but he also looks sluggish and not half the back that Mason is. Mack shouldn't be a threat either. But is Shanahan going to acknowledge any of this and do the right thing? Maybe. I'm done trying to guess with him. I wouldn't be shocked if Mack and Wilson both got hurt, Mason was the last breathing RB on the roster, and Shanahan decided to put Juszczyk at RB.
All I know is Mason is the best RB on the roster by a mile and could be a fantasy star if he gets a full workload. I'm going to hold another week and see what happens but I'm not holding my breath.
– Actually, the best RB on the roster is probably Deebo Samuel. I have no idea how that guy does it because he's the most awkward looking runner ever but every time he runs the ball it's amazing. He had a long run here straight up the gut where he should have been tackled for about a 4 yard loss, but instead he stopped dead in his tracks and then weaved his way straight through the middle of the defense and was outrunning everyone on the Seahawks. Someone finally caught him but he was pulling away from almost the whole team. He just doesn't look that fast but somehow he is.
Now that Trey is hurt I guess we're going right back to last year's usage for him. I'm just going to assume he'll keep scoring long TD's so he's a buy low candidate if you believe that.
Brandon Aiyuk had some hopes this year to finally get a few long balls on the outside from Lance but that dream is dead now. He's a random WR3 until further notice, especially when Kittle comes back.
– Geno Smith sucks but was efficient at dumping off passes against prevent defenses right before the half to rack up some useless numbers. At least he threw fewer outright stupid passes than Jimmy but he doesn't have the advantages of scheme or a great offensive line to help him out.
– I have no idea how Tyler Lockett got 9 catches for over 100 yards on 11 targets. That was the quietest big game ever. Most of it came from broken plays where Geno rolled out against pressure and found Lockett settling in open space. I don't think it's in any way sustainable. Ditto for DK Metcalf. Both guys will have the occasional useful game when they catch a TD or hit a long 50/50 ball but it's going to be random times and their down weeks will be brutal.
– Nothing looks wrong with Rashaad Penny but my preseason fears on him are coming true. This team just sucks so badly that they are going to constantly be down big and have to abandon the run. Atlanta this week is a nice chance to keep the game close and get the running game going, but if Penny can't seize the backfield here he's in trouble. He was outsnapped by Travis Homer here only because Homer was in for so many downs and the 2-minute drill. Nothing to worry about.
Normally I wouldn't be worried about him losing the job but I saw just a glimpse of rookie Kenneth Walker here and he showed he can play a little. He didn't do anything crazy good but did have a direct snap where he should have been tackled in the backfield but somehow jump cut away and made something out of nothing. Not many backs could have made that cut. He also had a nice catch out of the backfield snagging the ball like a real receiver. Not saying he's amazing or even a threat to Penny right now, but if Penny gets nicked up (as he does a lot) then Walker might take the reins and not give them back. Might not mean much on this crappy team in 2022 but could be a 2023 story.
– I'm banging the table for it now...Talanoa Hufanga is a player. That guy is absolutely everywhere and looks like he's being shot out of a cannon. 6 tackles, 1 tfl, 2 pd and one of those was a pass he tipped straight to another defender for an INT. One of the best young safeties in the game.
– One of the most predictable things in IDP is Seattle linebackers piling up tackles. Jordyn Brooks was obvious after he was top 3 in tackles last year, but I was pushing Cody Barton as a top 10 IDP option after Bobby Wagner went to the Rams. Barton had 11 tackles here and 10 last week. Nothing is going to slow these guys down.
Snap Counts of Interest:
67 = Aiyuk
59 = Deebo
35 = Jennings
18 = McCloud
7 = Gray
37 = Jeff Wilson
30 = TDP
0 = Mason
36 = Woerner
28 = Dwelley
21 = Kroft
45 = Metcalf
45 = Lockett
26 = Goodwin
6 = Eskridge
22 = Homer
20 = Penny
12 = Walker
26 = Fant
23 = Dissly