HEADLINE

Seahawks hope Geno Smith heals up for division showdown vs. 49ers

Field Level Media

November 22, 2023 at 10:45 pm.

The Seattle Seahawks likely would have preferred a full week to determine whether quarterback Geno Smith was healthy enough to start against the NFC West rival San Francisco 49ers.

Instead, they’ll only have until Thursday night, when the teams meet in Seattle.

Smith was injured late in the third quarter of a 17-16 defeat to the host Los Angeles Rams on Sunday when he was knocked to the turf by Aaron Donald. Smith suffered a bruise on his right arm, near the elbow.

“We’ll see how it goes,” Smith said of his availability for the Thanksgiving Day game. “That’s up to coach.”

Smith is listed as questionable for the game but Seahawks coach Pete Carroll has said all week that he’ll play.

Smith missed most of the fourth quarter with his throwing elbow in a heavy wrap before returning after the Rams took the lead with 1:31 remaining. Despite losing communication with the sideline, Smith guided the Seahawks into field-goal range before Jason Myers narrowly missed a 55-yard attempt in the closing seconds.

“Pretty difficult, in a lot of pain, but just tried to go out there and do my best,” said Smith, who finished 22-of-34 passing for 233 yards and one touchdown.

The Seahawks (6-4) will be without leading rusher Kenneth Walker III after he suffered an oblique injury in the first half against the Rams. He’s listed as doubtful but Carroll said Wednesday he can’t go. Safety Jamal Adams, however, will return after missing Sunday’s game with a knee issue. And star wide receiver DK Metcalf appeared on Tuesday’s estimated injury report with a toe injury but does not carry a game designation.

San Francisco (7-3) has righted itself after a three-game losing streak heading into its bye week.

Second-year quarterback Brock Purdy, who threw five interceptions during the 49ers’ skid, has been nearly flawless the past two weeks in victories against Jacksonville and Tampa Bay. Purdy completed 40 of 51 passes for 629 yards, six touchdowns and no interceptions in those games. He posted sky-high passer ratings of 148.9 and 158.3 against the Jaguars and Bucs, respectively.

Purdy said he got the “chip” back on his shoulder.

“Getting back to that and then proving myself every drive, every play that I can be the guy for this team and I have to earn it every single week at practice, in meetings, whatever it may be,” Purdy said. “So, that’s the mindset of what I was talking about and definitely more in tune to being detailed and stuff the last couple weeks and finding that chip again.”

Purdy leads the NFL in passer rating (115.1), completion rate (70.2 percent), yards per attempt (9.7) and percentage of passes for touchdowns (6.5 percent).

“System quarterback, right?” 49ers tight end George Kittle joked about Purdy. “Brock’s fantastic in the way he shows up every single day. Someone asked him about his mindset, like how he can be so aggressive and protect the football. He talked about being a surgeon. He talked about having zero fear and just that quote from him shows his maturity level, how he understands the game and what it means to play quarterback at a high level while being aggressive at taking care of the football.”

San Francisco safety Talanoa Hufanga suffered a season-ending knee injury last week. The 49ers could be without both starting offensive guards, as Spencer Burford (knee) missed practice time this week and Aaron Banks (toe) was limited. Both are listed as questionable.

Defensive end Robert Beal (hamstring) and cornerback Samuel Womack (knee) are also listed as questionable. Defensive tackle Javon Hargrave (thumb), WR Ray-Ray McCloud (rib) and cornerback Shemar Jean-Charles (shoulder) will all play.

Carroll said he knows his team faces a tough test but pointed to San Francisco’s recent skid.

“It’s just really a difficult team to deal with. But teams have figured it out. They have found them out and they were able to get them,” Carroll said. “So we understand that. They’ve got three losses. We got four losses. This is a huge opportunity for us.”