No, that wasn’t a dream. Yes, the Seahawks actually beat the previously unbeaten 49ers on the road in one of the wildest, emotionally draining regular-season NFL games in recent memory.
There’s still so much to unpack, and it’s almost impossible to recount all the highs and all the lows.
There was the early 10-point deficit flipped immediately by a Jadeveon Clowney fumble recovery for a touchdown. There was the near DK Metcalf near touchdown-turned-fumble before the half. And the Seahawks’ 11-point lead evaporating after lineman Germain Ifedi grabbed a Wilson fumble and turned into a running back before coughing up a fumble and a touchdown for San Francisco. There were more than a handful of questionable calls. There was the fourth-quarter heroics of 49ers rookie kicker Chase McLaughlin to tie the game followed by a hooked game-winning attempt in OT that resembled a bad tee-shot into the woods.
This win probability chart tracks the furious swings that could make your neck sore tracking the ups and downs.
But in the end, there was Russell Wilson. While fans’ hearts palpitated, Wilson’s pulse flatlined. For the 28th time in eight seasons, the Seahawks’ 5-foot-11 dynamo orchestrated a game-winning drive.
For Seattle, the win places them .5 games out of first place in the NFC West and a full game ahead of the Minnesota Vikings for the top Wild Card playoff spot.
Here’s what national media members (and a few local celebrities) had to say about the Monday Night madness.
Colin Cowherd of Fox Sports marvels at Wilson’s ability to work with backups, rookies and new players against the league’s top defense on the road.
Danny Heifetz of The Ringer recaps the night and shines a light on the most impactful player on the field not named Russell: Jadeveon Clowney.
“This game was played on a tilt, and Seattle’s Jadeveon Clowney is the one who knocked it off its axis. For most of the game, Clowney looked like the player everyone thought he would be after he took that Michigan running back’s head off. Clowney, whom the Seahawks acquired from the Texans on Labor Day weekend, finished with one sack, a fumble recovery for a touchdown, five (!) quarterback hits, and 10 pressures (all without a blitz), making Jimmy Garoppolo look like he was playing JV football.”
Danny Kelly of The Ringer echoed those sentiments, arguing Clowney could restore the Seahawks’ defensive identity following the end of the Legion of Boom.
“The Legion of Boom is long gone, but Clowney’s out-of-this-world outing helped the Seahawks defense regain, at least for one night, their once-signature swagger. Seattle entered the game looking like a team that would go only as far as Wilson’s arm could carry it, but the Seahawks came out of it with some much-needed bite on the other side of the ball. That defensive transformation―if it does stick―could make the Seahawks one of the most dangerous teams down the stretch.”
The stats back it up: Clowney was a monster on Monday night.
Nick Wright of Fox Sports questions the 49ers play calling in overtime and says Wilson is the clear-cut MVP.
However, not everyone agreed Wilson deserves to be the MVP frontrunner. Michael Wilbon of ESPN says his top candidate is Lamar Jackson.
Brady Henderson of ESPN.com wrote about Seattle’s stellar defensive showing.
“Seattle’s defense held the 49ers’ offense to a pair of field goals after allowing 10 points in the first quarter, with the 49ers’ lone touchdown of the second half coming on a Wilson fumble returned for a score. Garoppolo finished 24-of-46 for 248 yards, a touchdown and an interception on a tipped ball that landed in safety Quandre Diggs’ hands.”
Terence Moore of Forbes.com says despite being the league’s highest-paid player, Russell Wilson deserves a raise.
“This goes beyond the way this 5-foot-11 magician in shoulder pads for the Seattle Seahawks (8-2) did all sorts of wonderfully crazy things Monday night in Santa Clara, California during a 27-24 victory in overtime over the previously unbeaten San Francisco 49ers (8-1).
Not only was Wilson clutch with most of his 34 passes along the way to 24 completions for 232 yards and a touchdown, but he bobbed, weaved and twisted his way on the gr0und for 53 yards on 30-year-old legs.”
Jake May of SI.com writes about the reignited rivalry between the two NFC West teams.
“To pinpoint the last time the 49ers and Seahawks played a mutually meaningful game of football, you must travel back almost five years to Thanksgiving night 2014. Seattle, locked in a tie atop the NFC West at the time with San Francisco at 7-4, went to The Bay and spanked the 49ers 19-3, prompting a festive midfield postgame dinner for Russell Wilson and Richard Sherman and a public apology from Niners CEO Jed York.”
Dan Hanzus of NFL.com put the Seahawks No. 4 in his updated power rankings follow the win, but kept San Francisco at No. 1.
“Wilson’s steady hand is irreplaceable in pressure cookers like this, but the game ball has to go to Jadeveon Clowney, who played like a superstar. Clowney lived in San Francisco’s backfield, created turnovers, scored a touchdown and basically ensured he’ll soon get a contract that makes him one of the highest-paid defenders in football.”
Ken Belson of The New York Times notes the ‘reality check’ the Seahawks handed San Francisco.
“The 49ers showed why their team is still a work in progress after losing, 27-24, to their N.F.C. West rivals, the Seattle Seahawks, in overtime. Despite the loss, the 49ers remain a half-game atop the league’s most competitive division. But Seattle, with quarterback Russell Wilson at the helm, displayed the poise and creativity of a team that has made the playoffs six out of the past seven seasons, and will probably continue to chase the 49ers.”
Chuck Schilken of The LA Times writes about perhaps the silliest debate following the game, which was about the coin toss before overtime. It involved backup QB Geno Smith, who won the toss for Seattle, calling “heads”. But recordings of the call surfaced on Twitter after the game, and it caught fire.
“The funniest part about this debate is none of it ended up mattering. The Seahawks got possession of the ball but ended up turning it over. Then the 49ers missed what would have been a game-winning field goal, and the two teams exchanged punts before Seattle finally won the game 27-24 on a 42-yard field goal by Jason Myers as time expired.”
And several celebrity Seahawks fans weighed in, including Matthew McConaughey, who had maybe the best line of the night on Twitter and Chrissy Teigen adding some sage advice on how to celebrate a successful Seattle sports weekend.