When: Sunday, 1:15 p.m., Qwest Field
Records: Seahawks 4-7, 49ers 5-6
TV: KCPQ/13 (Chris Myers, Ross Tucker)
Radio: 710 ESPN-AM and KIRO-FM/97.3 (Steve Raible, Warren Moon, Jen Mueller)
The Seahawks defense vs. 49ers RB Frank Gore: The Seahawks have contained the 49ers’ bruising back in the past. Really. In the four games when they’ve had gap integrity the past three seasons, the Seahawks have limited Gore to an average of 76.5 yards. In the three games when they’ve blown gap assignments, Gore has rambled for 212 and 144 yards (in 2006) and 207 yards (in Week 2 this season). The Seahawks must hit Gore early, before he can get his 217 pounds and thundering thighs in gap-gouging gear.
One to watch
Seahawks RBs Julius Jones and Justin Forsett vs. the 49ers defense: Forsett strained a quad in practice on Friday and Jones has missed the past 2½ games with a bruised lung. But the Seahawks remain determined to run the ball against the 49ers’ fifth-ranked run defense. The run game has been sporadic, to say the least, in the past three games. The Seahawks ran for 164 yards (123 by Forsett) against a Cardinals defense that ranked third in the league at the time. Then came a franchise-low 9-yard performance against a Vikings defense that ranked sixth in the league. Last week, it was a season-high 170 yards (130 by Forsett) against the Rams.
Fun to watch
Seahawks CB Josh Wilson vs. 49ers TE Vernon Davis: This isn’t one of those matchups, because Wilson rarely – if ever – will have Davis one-on-one. But these former high school rivals and college teammates already have a NFL history. Wilson had a 75-yard interception return against the 49ers in San Francisco last year, but was almost caught from behind by Davis – who outweighs him by 60 pounds. Wilson also has returned interceptions for scores twice in the past four games. Davis? He only shares the league lead with nine TD catches and tops the 49ers with 57 receptions. At some point – and likely several points – their paths will cross in the game.
49ers QB Alex Smith is looking for his first road win as the starter since Week 2 in 2007. … The 49ers have won two of the past three games in the home-and-home series, including 23-10 in Week 2 this season in San Francisco and 33-30 in overtime at Qwest last season. … The 49ers had a season-high six sacks in last week’s win over the Jaguars, and the Seahawks had a season-high five when they played the Jags in Week 5. … Seahawks K Olindo Mare is a successful field goal attempt from breaking the franchise record of 16 in a row that he shares with Todd Peterson and Josh Brown. … MLB Patrick Willis leads the 49ers in tackles (107), is tied for the lead in interceptions (2) and tied for third in sacks (3), while Seahawks MLB David Hawthorne is second on the team in tackles (77), leads the club in interceptions (3) and is tied for second in sacks (4).