The San Francisco 49ers became the first team in the NFL to see their place in this season’s playoffs confirmed on Monday, but head coach Kyle Shanahan won’t rest until his side have clinched the NFC’s top seed.
The 49ers improved to 10-3 with a 28-16 win over their NFC West rivals the Seattle Seahawks on Sunday, before the Green Bay Packers’ 24-22 defeat to the New York Giants punched their postseason ticket one day later.
Kicker Randy Bullock made a 37-yard field goal as time expired for the Giants, with Green Bay suffering their first December defeat since Matt LaFleur took over as coach in 2019.
San Francisco enjoyed an excellent week overall as they are now leading the race for the NFC’s top seed following the Philadelphia Eagles’ loss to the Dallas Cowboys.
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Four wins from their final four regular-season games will now guarantee them home-field advantage through the playoffs, and Shanahan won’t celebrate until that is secured.
“I’ll have a reaction when it is the number one spot, if it is, because that’s when the season ends,” Shanahan told reporters on Monday.
“Right now, it doesn’t mean much. It just means where you’re at now. I know we won’t be that if we don’t handle business this week.
“So, that’s really all we’re worried about this week, and then we’ll move on to who we play after that.”
“Who doesn’t want to play as the first seed with home-field advantage?” quarterback Brock Purdy asked.
“I think everybody in the league knows that. We know that here and like I said, we’re taking it one day at a time and everything will fall into place that needs to.”
The 49ers go to the Arizona Cardinals for their next game on Sunday, before hosting the Baltimore Ravens – who are frontrunners in the AFC after Week 14 – on Christmas Day.
— NFL (@NFL) December 12, 2023