Key Takeaways: Purdy and Deebo Shine in 49ers’ Fifth Consecutive Victory over ‘Hawks

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What we learned as Purdy, Deebo light up ‘Hawks in fifth straight 49ers win originally appeared on NBC Sports Bay Area

SANTA CLARA — The 49ers’ big-play ability was on full display Sunday as San Francisco completed a season sweep over the Seattle Seahawks for the second consecutive season.

Quarterback Brock Purdy orchestrated the symphony of explosive plays with Christian McCaffrey, Deebo Samuel, Brandon Aiyuk and George Kittle each having their moments with the ball in their hands.

The 49ers took care of business with a 28-16 victory over the Seahawks on Sunday at Levi’s Stadium in order to achieve a favorable seed in the NFC playoffs.

The 49ers improved to 10-3 on the season, while the Seahawks drop to 6-7 with the first four-game losing streak of the Pete Carroll era.

If the Dallas Cowboys beat the top-seeded Philadelphia Eagles on Sunday night, the 49ers would control their own destiny for a first-round bye and home-field advantage in the postseason.

Here are three takeaways from the 49ers’ Week 14 victory:

Purdy continues MVP bid

Purdy did nothing to hurt his standing as one of the top candidates for 2023 NFL MVP.

Purdy completed 19 of 27 pass attempts for a career-high 368 yards in his fourth career game (all victories) against the Seahawks.

He entered as the league leader in passer rating, and he will remain atop the list after he achieved a rating of 122.1 on Sunday.

Purdy’s 70.4 completion percentage gave him seven consecutive games of 70-percent-or-better accuracy.

He becomes the fourth player in NFL history with a completion percentage of 70 or better in seven consecutive games. He joins 49ers legend Joe Montana (eight games in 1989), Drew Brees (seven in 2016) and Sam Bradford (seven in 2016).

Two of the other favorites for MVP are scheduled to meet Sunday night: Philadelphia quarterback Jalen Hurts and Dallas signal-caller Dak Prescott.

The 49ers broke open a close game early in the fourth quarter on Purdy’s 44-yard touchdown pass to Kittle.

Aiyuk caught six passes for 126 yards to become the first 49ers wide receiver to go over the 1,000-yard mark in back-to-back seasons since Anquan Boldin (2013 and ’14).

Samuel had a monster day with seven receptions for 149 yards.

Big plays account for first-half offense

For most of their 24 plays in the first half, the 49ers’ offense could not get anything going against the Seahawks.

But those other two snaps were really something.

After the first two plays, it looked as if the 49ers were going to roll as 13.5-point favorites. Running back Christian McCaffrey found an opening over the right side and set out on a 72-yard run on the first play from scrimmage. McCaffrey finally was brought down at the 3-yard line.

On the next play, backup running back Jordan Mason took it across the goal line for the touchdown. The 49ers led 7-0 with just 57 seconds elapsed.

But that was about it for the 49ers’ offense until midway through the second quarter when they struck with another big play.

Purdy had a clean pocket and delivered a pass deep down the field for Samuel, who torched Seattle slow-footed safety Jamal Adams for a 54-yard touchdown pass.

Samuel continued his hot streak. The touchdown gave the 49ers a 14-10 lead at halftime.

Last week in Philadelphia, Samuel scored three times, including scoring passes of 48 and 46 yards.

He added another touchdown in the third quarter against the Seahawks, as he took a handoff and scored from 1 yard out.

Early exit for Ward due to injury

The 49ers’ top cornerback, Charvarius Ward, was on the field for just four defensive snaps before leaving with a groin strain. It was not much of a rematch against DK Metcalf, whom Ward had a big game against when they met on Thanksgiving.

Ward nearly had an interception on the third play, when he ran stride-for-stride down the field with Seahawks rookie wide receiver Jaxon Smith-Njigba. Ward got both hands on the ball but could not hold on.

He got up slowly after that play. On the next play, Seattle went after Ward, who failed to tackle Metcalf after a short pass. Metcalf gained 21 yards on the play, and Ward exited the game.

The 49ers played the rest of the game with Ambry Thomas in place of Ward with Deommodore Lenoir on the other side. Isaiah Oliver entered the game at nickel back in passing situations.

The 49ers continued with Samuel Womack as the only backup cornerback with Darrell Luter expected to miss some time with a hamstring injury.

The 49ers have an opening on the practice squad that could go to veteran cornerback Jason Verrett, who worked out for the team on Nov. 16 but has yet to officially sign to return to the team.

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