Though Steven Jackson was the last player to score a rushing touchdown on the San Francisco 49ers, it's not the Week 17 matchup against the St. Louis Rams that threatens to break San Francisco's impressive rushing touchdown-less streak the most. No, that's coming on Saturday, when the 49ers will take on the Seattle Seahawks and resurgent running back Marshawn Lynch.
San Francisco hasn't allowed a rushing touchdown all season, and if they don't allow any over the next two weeks, they'll be the only team in NFL history to have done so over a 16-game season. The record is two rushing touchdowns allowed in a year, so it would be a huge precedent to set and would instill this 49ers team as one of the best ever in regards to rushing defense. When you take into account the running backs that the 49ers have faced this year, the number is most certainly impressive.
But this iteration of Lynch could be the best back they've faced this year, even though they already faced him once, back in the first game of the season. Lynch eclipsed 1,000 yards on the season in his last outing, though it wasn't his best game - he only rushed for 42 yards, but he did have two touchdowns. In fact, he's scored a touchdown in seven of his last eight games, scoring two touchdowns in two of them.
In the three games before his most recent outing, Lynch rushed for yardage totals of 111, 115 and 148. Five times this year, he's rushed for more than 100 yards. Needless to say, Lynch will present a tough test against the 49ers. He's moving the chains and more importantly, he's bruising defenses before they can bruise him .
On the flip-side to that, the Seahawks should be considering San Francisco the biggest test for Lynch this season. Justin Smith, Isaac Sopoaga and Ray McDonald are punishing running backs every week, and even if Patrick Willis isn't active, Larry Grant has quickly shown that he's just as eager to hit, and hit hard. The first time these two teams met, Lynch was held without a score and just 33 yards.
While it will be interesting to see if Lynch can break the 49ers' streak, it's more so musing of the curious as opposed to something you should be betting on.