While reading through Greg Roman's press conference from yesterday, his responses regarding the Seattle defense caught my attention. When asked if he finds himself drawing up some things just because of Seattle or thinking of a different personnel lineup because of what they do his response was, "And with Seattle, the beauty of what they do is it’s pretty simple and it’s pretty consistent. So, as far as drawing up new plays, maybe a few. Maybe a few.”
The only time the Seahawks would adjust out of the above front was when the 49ers would go into their diamond formation. As shown below, when this would happen Seattle would adjust their front to a 3-5-3 look by sliding the man to head up on the center and the safety stepping inside over the tackle. The picture below is an example of this. The 49ers motioned into the set and the Seahawks are adjusting into it which is why the picture is just after the ball has been snapped.
If they are so simple why have are they so good? The answer to that is also simple. By limiting the number of things they need to do the Seahawks defense can play extremely fast. This also partially explains why they are able to fit different guys into their scheme seamlessly. Being so basic allows the coaches to maximize practice reps and drills to get them prepared week in and week out. And don't forget those guys are pretty good over there.
Can the 49ers take advantage of this simplicity after two straight losses up in Seattle? They've been closer than the scores would make it seem.