Three and Out: 49ers lost composure, not their 'finest hour'
Colin Kaepernick's final stat line: 13-for-28, 127 yards, 3 INT, lost fumble, 87 rush yards. (AP)
SEATTLE – There was no shortage of electricity when two NFC heavyweights collided under the lights Sunday night.
In a game that was suspended for an hour in the first half to allow a lightning storm to pass, the Seattle Seahawks put together a dominating defensive performance to bolt past the 49ers, 29-3, and take an early one-game lead in the NFC West.
Colin Kaepernick, who threw for 412 yards in the season-opening victory over the Green Bay Packers, could not get things going against a ferocious Seahawks defense that thoroughly confounded, frustrated and overmatched the 49ers.
Kaepernick did not look comfortable all game as the crowd at CenturyLink field turned up the decibels while the Seahawks defense turned up the heat. Kaepernick completed just 13 of 28 passes for 127 yards. He threw three interceptions and also lost a fumble.
It was the first time in Kaepernick’s 12-start NFL career that he threw more than one interception in a game.
And wide receiver Anquan Boldin, the reigning NFC Offensive Player of the Week, was stymied against the suffocating press coverage of Seattle cornerback Richard Sherman. One week after catching 13 passes for 208 yards, Boldin was held to one catch for 7 yards.
Sherman was in coverage against 49ers tight end Vernon Davis in the fourth quarter and picked up his second interception in the two starts Kaepernick has made in Seattle. Sherman had a 28-yard return to set up Hauschka’s 37-yard field goal with 11:31 remaining to make it 22-3.
The play was doubly painful for the 49ers, as Davis exited with a hamstring strain – the third significant injury the 49ers sustained in the game. Nose tackle Ian Williams broke his left ankle, a source told CSNBayArea.com, and safety Eric Reid sustained a concussion and did not play in the second half.
Seattle quarterback Russell Wilson did not exactly have an easy time against the 49ers’ defense, but he made just enough plays for the Seahawks to pull away in the second half. Wilson completed just 8 of 19 passes for 142 yards to along with a touchdown and in interception. He also rushed for 36 yards.
And Seahawks running back Marshawn Lynch, who eclipsed the 100-yard mark in his three previous games against the 49ers, gained 98 yards and two touchdowns on 28 carries.
Meanwhile, the only production the 49ers could muster on the ground came from Kaepernick in the second half. Kaepernick gained 87 yards rushing. Running back Frank Gore found no room to run against the Seahawks, as he gained just 16 yards on 9 carries.
In a game that was dominated by the defenses, it was only appropriate the first score of the game was a safety.
Fullback Bruce Miller was called for holding in the end zone against Seahawks outside linebacker Malcolm Smith, which resulted in a safety. The play gave Seattle a 2-0 lead early in the second quarter.
The Seahawks later cashed in a turnover for Steven Hauschka’s 30-yard field goal. Seattle defensive end Cliff Avril stripped Kaepernick on a sack. Linebacker K.J. Wright recovered the fumble, which led to Hauschka’s field goal and a 5-0 lead.
The 49ers managed just 13 points in both meetings against the Seahawks last season, including a 42-13 loss in Seattle in December. The teams meet again on Dec. 8 at Candlestick Park.
Momentum turn: The 49ers’ best scoring chance of the first half ended in the first quarter when Seattle safety Earl Thomas intercepted Kaepernick on a third-down play at the goal line. Kaepernick tied to squeeze a pass into Davis, but cornerback Walter Thurmond deflected the ball.
The 49ers’ scoring chance was created when Craig Dahl broke through off the right side to block Jon Ryan punt, giving the 49ers possession at the Seattle 33-yard line.
Touchdown machine: Lynch was the first to get into the end zone. He scored on a 14-yard touchdown run with 9:12 remaining in the third quarter. The play was set up by Russell Wilson’s 51-yard pass to Doug Baldwin against the coverage of safety Donte Whitner.
Lynch scored his second touchdown of the game with 13:44 remaining in the fourth quarter on a 7-yard pass from Wilson. Lynch was wide open at the goal line and stopped shy of the goal line and then tip-toed into the end zone to give the Seahawks a 19-3 lead.
Kam Chancellor’s interception late in the game set up Lynch’s 2-yard touchdown run with 4:22 remaining.
Reid injured: Reid, who became the first 49ers rookie in club history to record interceptions in his first two games, sustained a concussion when he made a big hit on Seattle wide receiver Sidney Rice at the end of a 13-yard completion late in the second quarter. He left the field under his own power but was ruled out of the game. Veteran Craig Dahl replaced Reid in the 49ers lineup.
Bad break: Williams is out indefinitely with a broken left ankle -- the result of a low block from Seahawks right guard J.R. Sweezy in the first quarter. Williams, a third-year pro, made his first NFL start and sustained the injury on his third snap of the game.
[RELATED-- Willis: Legal block on Williams 'uncalled for']
Veteran Glenn Dorsey took over at nose tackle for the 49ers after Williams’ injury. It is not known how long Williams will be out of action, but a source said he will be sidelined “for a while.”