4 things we learned from 49ers mistake-filled loss to Seahawks

Eli Mitchell #25 of the San Francisco 49ers (Photo by Abbie Parr/Getty Images)
Eli Mitchell #25 of the San Francisco 49ers (Photo by Abbie Parr/Getty Images) /
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Tyler Lockett, Josh Norman, San Francisco 49ers, Seattle Seahawks
Seattle Seahawks wide receiver Tyler Lockett (16) catches a touchdown pass in front of San Francisco 49ers cornerback Josh Norman (26) Mandatory Credit: Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports /

No. 1: 49ers have an awfully slim margin for error

When the 49ers play relatively mistake-free football, they can surely knock off the best of teams out there, especially if they’re putting themselves in a position to take advantage of other teams’ errors.

Perhaps the Niners can overcome a mistake or two here and there. But when those errors start to pile up, especially early, the problems become more compounding.

The two Jimmy Garoppolo interceptions are a prime example, and the field-position battle was sorely felt after the wide receiver Travis Benjamin fumble on a kickoff return just at the start of the third quarter.

Seattle, too, committed plenty of mistakes during the game, committing three turnovers of its own. Yet one of the key tipping points that didn’t go San Francisco’s way was how Kyle Shanahan’s team was flagged 10 times for 86 yards, while the Seahawks were penalized just six times for 40.

A big difference.

Sure, there’ll be those who argue the Hawks got away with some calls, or the 49ers were flagged for some ticky-tack penalties. But that’s the point: The Niners aren’t talented or deep enough to overcome those kinds of mistakes.

That fact revealed itself in full in Week 13, just like it did during that four-game losing streak earlier this season.

Next. 4 biggest bone-headed plays from 49ers' Week 13 loss to Seahawks. dark