Originally posted on Football Nation  |  Last updated 10/21/12
Just when you thought that the NFC West was the best division in football they have two dud weeks in a row. That is usually how it goes for these four teams; they win as underdogs and lose as favorites. San Francisco was the only team to win this week and they are now in first at 5-2.There is a lot of stuff to cover, so let’s get to it. Here is your NFC West Week 7 recap.ResultsSan Francisco 49ers 13 Seattle Seahawks 6Arizona Cardinals 14 Minnesota Vikings 21St. Louis Rams 20 Green Bay Packers 30StandingsSan Francisco 49ers: 5-2Arizona Cardinals: 4-3Seattle Seahawks: 4-3St. Louis Rams: 3-4What We LearnedAlex Smith is Holding San Francisco BackIn their first game against a division opponent this season the San Francisco 49ers knocked off the Seattle Seahawks on Thursday Night Football by a score of 13-6. The win puts them atop the division at 5-2, while Seattle drops to 4-3.Despite picking up the win, 49ers quarterback Alex Smith had another rough outing. If you take away the third quarter touchdown drive, Smith completed only nine passes for 80 yards with no touchdowns and an interception. Even with the touchdown drive he still had just 74.5 passer rating.San Francisco has had two losses due to poor quarterback play and if not for a couple of dropped passes, they could have easily had a third. Alex Smith and the offense have 11 days to prepare for Arizona. They need to turn things around if they want to avoid embarrassing themselves on Monday Night Football.Seahawks Defense is Not InvincibleDespite allowing just 13 points in their Week 7 loss to San Francisco, the Seattle Seahawks defense did show some weakness. Prior to the 49ers game, their defense was allowing just 70 rushing yards per game and had yet to allow over 100 yards.That all came to an end this past week as they allowed 175 rushing yards on 32 carries. Frank Gore led the way with 131 of those yards followed by Kendall Hunter. Alex Smith, Kyle Williams and Colin Kaepernick all had at least one rushing attempt and as a team they averaged 5.5 yards per carry.Seattle still has a great defense. They are fifth in yards allowed and sixth in rushing yards allowed. This is a dominant group, but they have given opposing offenses some hope. The 49ers had success in the run game and you can bet that the Seahawks opposition will be looking at that game tape from here on out.Arizona is Going to Miss Kevin KolbIt was another tough week for the Arizona Cardinals and many fans are starting to give up on this team. After starting the year 4-0 they have dropped three straight games and sit a game behind first place in the division at 4-3.The easy way out in this situation is to blame the offensive line, heck; I have been doing it for weeks. In this game, however, they were definitely not the only problem. This was one of the best offensive line performances of the season and they were made out to be a lot worse than they played.Mike Miller is a terrible offensive coordinator and John Skelton held on to the ball far too long and ran into multiple sacks. Was the offensive line great? Not at all, but they did give Skelton more time to throw than they have in previous weeks.They played well enough that the Cardinals would have won this game if a healthy Kevin Kolb was under center. While Skelton did have a pretty solid stat line, he missed several reads, was inaccurate and made poor decisions.Kolb is expected to be out for at least a couple of weeks and if Skelton does not improve, they will certainly miss him.Rams Run Game Back On TrackThe St. Louis Rams were in the wrong place at the wrong time this week. The Green Bay Packers started slow this season, but they have been on a tear the past two weeks. After throwing six touchdowns passes in a route over Houston, Aaron Rodgers would continue his success against the Rams.Green Bay put up 30 points this week and were led by the best quarterback in football. Rodgers completed 81 percent of his passes and threw for another three touchdowns. This is a team that looks like a Super Bowl contender and the Rams put up a decent fight.The biggest positive in this game for St. Louis was its success in the run game. They were not able to run the ball much as the trailed almost the entire game. That said they averaged nearly five yards per carry.Steven Jackson looked solid; rushing for 57 yards on 12 carries with a touchdown. Daryl Richardson is also proving to be a solid No. 2 back with 36 yards on eight carries. This is the one department that they beat the Packers in as the defense held Green Bay to just 70 rushing yards on 26 carries. If St. Louis can continue their success running the football, then they will win a few more games going forward.
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