No. 1: 49ers Are Still the No. 1 Seed in the NFC
San Francisco lost. And the loss means the Seahawks now trail in the NFC West by only half a game. They also hold the early tiebreaker over the Niners, too, which isn’t a good thing.
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Yet the 49ers are 8-1. That’s still tied for the best record in the NFL with the New England Patriots. So, by that basic count, 30 other teams in the league would happily trade place with San Francisco right now.
The Niners didn’t relinquish their hold on the NFC West or the conference, either. Yes, Seattle could seriously overtake the 49ers in the division. And San Francisco’s remaining schedule, which includes road games against the top-contending Ravens and New Orleans Saints, isn’t easy.
Keep an eye on the Niners’ 2019 regular-season finale, too, which is against the Seahawks in Seattle. That contest could possibly determine the division winner.
But a bigger bonus for Kyle Shanahan’s squad might be this: San Francisco was tested in a way much different than it had been for most of the season so far. Monday’s loss is much more indicative of what the 49ers will face down the stretch and into the postseason. Learning those key lessons now, proverbially “sharpening iron with iron,” can pay dividends in coming weeks.
So, while a loss still stings, the Niners can pull away with a number of key lessons and positive takeaways.