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NFC West Roundup: Seahawks Need To Separate Themselves From This Mess

Let's not jinx the Seahawks by talking too much about them sitting in first place with the now-mighty Oakland Raiders in front of them.

But as much as they have an opportunity to gain control of the division, the bottom - that would be the San Francisco 49ers, of course - is starting to fall out.

Niners Nation - For San Francisco 49ers Fans
When a team goes in the tank, they eventually start rolling out the young players to see what they can bring to the table. If a team has no chance of making the playoffs, it certainly makes sense to use what game time you do have to assess your talent. This is a position the 49ers find themselves in, or at least fast approaching as 2010 gets uglier and uglier.

Any "youth movement" would probably be delayed in San Francisco at least a few more weeks because of Coach Mike Singletary's relatively tenuous hold on the head coaching position. Ownership has said they'll keep him through the rest of the season, but if the losses continue to pile up that opinion might change in a hurry.

Just reading that is painful. And while it does get better for the St. Louis Rams, there's no debate about whether they should start a youth movement because they're already there.

Overanalyze this: Random Ramsdom, 10/26 - Turf Show Times
The Rams played the first half like a good team, a much better one than their opponents, but good teams close out strong, add points and finish the job. It's mostly a young team learning to find its sea legs, so to speak, and will get better. But the sooner they can learn to make that happen, the sooner they'll be winning the games that the should win, on the road or in the Dome.

Of all the things and people taking heat for this loss, ESPN's Mike Sando points out one of the Rams biggest problems in the second half that goes beyond scheme or play calls: an inability of Sam Bradford to find a receiver he could trust with the game on the line, a guy who could make tough catches with a fired up Buccaneers teams closing things off around them.

Although they're sitting in first place currently, this is no time for the Seahawks to be overconfident: mathematically, even the 49ers are still alive in this division, as coach Mike Singletary insists.

Singletary: playoffs still possible : Niner Insider
Also a possibility, the playoffs according to Singletary. "I still believe we can go to the playoffs," Singletary said when he was asked if his team is just not very good.

But the reality is that given the turmoil in this division, the first team to separate themselves from the pack may be the one that finds themselves headed to the playoffs in the end. 

In a wild card game, of course.