NFL Football

Seahawks, 49ers meet for the second time this month

Playing twice in a three-week span is unusual, but the Seattle Seahawks and the San Francisco 49ers will go at it again Sunday at Levi's Stadium in Santa Clara, Calif.

Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll isn't putting too much stock in what happened in Seattle's 43-16 win in the first meeting, noting that San Francisco (3-10) played well in a 20-14 victory over the Denver Broncos last week.

The Seahawks (8-5) picked up a big win at home on Monday night to bolster their NFC wild-card position, handling the Minnesota Vikings 21-7.

"We just played these guys a couple weeks ago," Carroll said of the 49ers, "but we do everything like it's a brand-new game and start all over again.

"The Niners played really good last week against Denver. Really played an explosive game early in particular and controlled the score the whole time, played really good football."

With the Seahawks coming off the Monday night win, it might be easy for them to overlook the 49ers, but Seattle defensive coordinator Ken Norton Jr. isn't concerned at all about his defense treating this as a "trap" game, saying the group is too young to know what that is.

"You know, you have to be around a while to understand that," Norton said. "They just love ball, they just understand, they're always trying to find different ways to be coached and we like what we see, the guys are playing at a really high level.

"We're trying to win some ballgames, we're trying to stack up wins -- that's all that really matters right now."

The Seattle defense should be motivated after a somewhat uneven performance against the 49ers on Dec. 2 at CenturyLink Field. Though the Seahawks held the Niners to fewer than 3 yards per carry on the ground, quarterback Nick Mullens threw for 414 yards and two touchdowns.

Seahawks linebacker Bobby Wagner says the greatest challenge playing the same team twice in a short period comes down to the ability to watch film and prepare.

"You kind of see what they did good and they're going to go back to it," he said. "They also see the plays that they could have got that they didn't, that they probably should have used more of. In our position, we won the game, but you don't want to get complacent and thinking the same thing is gonna happen again."

Wagner wants the Seahawks to approach Sunday's game like it's the playoffs.

"We're coming off a short week, so we have to make sure that our focus and everything is that much more sharper," Wagner said. "And understand this is a hungry team. Whenever you come out and beat a team the way we did, they're not just gonna let you do that again, so we have to make sure we approach the game that way. They're gonna throw a little bit more wrinkles in, they're gonna run more things that they had success on, and just be ready."

Against the Broncos, the 49ers were surprisingly successful in shutting down the Denver running game. Doing the same this week might significantly increase their chances of creating a winning streak.

In the last meeting with the Seahawks, the 49ers gave up 168 rushing yards.

Meanwhile, the 49ers' offense is moving the ball now. Mullens has passed for 746 yards the past two weeks, the most in the NFL, but he also knows it will be much different facing the Seahawks a second time this season.

"The first time we played Seattle, we did not score enough points," Mullens said. "So that will definitely be the emphasis as always, capitalize on important opportunities during the game and perform well in the moment of truth and that's how we'll get our points."

Several injured 49ers players could return this week to help Mullens on offense. Running back Matt Breida (sprained ankle) was able to participate in practice on a limited basis Wednesday after sitting out last week. Wide receiver Marquise Goodwin had two catches for 20 yards against the Broncos after returning last week from a two-game absence to deal with personal issues.

One of Mullens' favorite targets is tight end George Kittle, who ranks second in the NFL in receiving yards by a tight end with 1,103.

Updated December 12, 2018

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Teams Score Time
NCAA MBB
St. Francis Brooklyn 64 F
North Carolina State 95
North Carolina Central   5:00pm
Louisville  
NCAA FB
Syracuse 49 F
Duke 6
Louisville 34 F
NC State 20
NFL
Falcons   1:00pm
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NHL
Hurricanes 4 F/OT
Wild 3
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Columbia 42 F
Virginia 60
Oakland 50 F
Maryland 80
Ohio 54 F
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North Carolina State 95
Lehigh 53 F
Virginia Tech 79
Alcorn State 56 F
Memphis 102
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Boston College 85
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Miami (FL) 80
Nicholls 65 F
LSU 75
Washington 62 F
Tennessee 75
Seattle 67 F
Syracuse 89
San Diego 53 F
Colorado 71
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Detroit   3:00pm
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Seton Hall   4:00pm
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North Carolina Central   5:00pm
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Wake Forest   6:00pm
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Cal Poly   8:00pm
Saint Mary's  
UT Arlington   8:00pm
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Alabama 38 F
Mississippi State 7
Alabama State 12 F
Florida State 49
Florida 23 F
Missouri 6
Indiana 27 F
Penn State 34
Kansas 13 F
Oklahoma State 31
Michigan State 10 F
Michigan 44
Wisconsin 37 F
Nebraska 21
Navy 20 F
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Georgia 21 F
Auburn 14
Memphis 45 F
Houston 27
Ohio State 56 F
Rutgers 21
Texas 21 F
Iowa State 23
Virginia Tech 45 F
Georgia Tech 0
Wake Forest 3 F
Clemson 52
Minnesota 19 F
Iowa 23
Syracuse 49 F
Duke 6
Cincinnati 20 F
South Florida 17
LSU 58 F
Ole Miss 37
Louisville 34 F
NC State 20
Oklahoma 34 F
Baylor 31
UCLA 3 F
Utah 49
New Mexico 9 F
Boise State 42
Arizona 6 F
Oregon 34
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Bulls 111
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Pacers 83
Hornets 103 F
Knicks 102
Rockets 125 F
Timberwolves 105
Pelicans 94 F
Heat 109
Trail Blazers 121 F
Spurs 116
Raptors 102 F
Mavericks 110
Hawks 101 F
Clippers 150
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Hurricanes 4 F/OT
Wild 3
Flames 0 F
Coyotes 3
Stars 5 F/OT
Oilers 4
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Kings 4
Jets 4 F
Lightning 3
Devils 4 F/OT
Canadiens 3
Islanders 4 F/SO
Flyers 3
Rangers 3 F
Panthers 4
Senators 2 F
Sabres 4
Maple Leafs 1 F
Penguins 6
Capitals 3 F/SO
Bruins 2
Ducks 4 F
Blues 1
Blackhawks 7 F
Predators 2
Avalanche 5 F/OT
Canucks 4
Red Wings 3 F/SO
Sharks 4
Sabres   7:00pm
Blackhawks  
Flames   7:00pm
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MONSTER ENERGY NASCAR CUP SERIES AT PHOENIX
Pos # Name Start Pos
1 11 Denny Hamlin 3
2 18 Kyle Busch 1
3 12 Ryan Blaney 10
4 42 Kyle Larson 5
5 4 Kevin Harvick 7
6 19 Martin Truex Jr 4
7 20 Erik Jones 9
8 14 Clint Bowyer 13
9 22 Joey Logano 2
NASCAR XFINITY SERIES AT MIAMI
Pos # Name Start Pos
1 2 Tyler Reddick 1
2 00 Cole Custer 2
3 98 Chase Briscoe 5
4 9 Noah Gragson 10
5 20 Christopher Bell 7
6 23 John Hunter Nemechek 6
7 22 Austin Cindric 3
8 19 Brandon Jones 4
9 8 Jeb Burton 18
FORD ECOBOOST 200
Pos # Name Start Pos
1 16 Austin Hill 5
2 88 Matt Crafton 9
3 51 Christian Eckes 2
4 45 Ross Chastain 3
5 24 Brett Moffitt 4
6 13 Johnny Sauter 6
7 98 Grant Enfinger 7
8 4 Todd Gilliland 11
9 2 Sheldon Creed 12