Heading into Saturday's Week 16 matchup against the San Francisco 49ers, the home team was well aware of the formidable defense they would be facing. They were also intimately familiar with the fact that they have one of the most powerful and evasive rushers in the NFL in running back Marshawn Lynch.
Entering Saturday's game, the San Francisco 49ers had not allowed a rushing touchdown all season, nor had they allowed a 100-yard rushing game. Although the Seahawks came up short of winning the game with a 19-17 loss, Lynch snapped both of those 49ers streaks by himself. Lynch scored on a four-yard rush in the fourth quarter, and a short time later crossed the 100-yard threshold. He finished the game with 107 yards on 21 carries.
Lynch put on an impressive performance against a dominant offense. But the two streaks are worth a closer look, because they may be more impressive than they seem at first glance. Lynch's touchdown was the first the 49ers have allowed on the ground since Week 16 of last year, when Steven Jackson of the St. Louis Rams scored against them. That means the 49ers made it from Week 16 to Week 16 without a single rushing touchdown allowed. That's overpowering stuff.
The other streak may be even more amazing. The last 100-yard rushing game the 49ers allowed was when Ryan Grant of the Green Bay Packers picked up 129 yards on 21 carries. That game took place on November 22, 2009. Look at that date again. That's over two full years without a 100-yard game from any rusher.
Marshawn Lynch and the Seahawks should be very proud of what they accomplished Saturday, because many other teams have come up well short of those marks for some time.
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