Updated Dec 23, 2012 - 4:50 pm
Pregame notes: Sherman active, 49ers' Smith out
Greetings from the pressbox at CenturyLink Field, where the Seahawks will host the division-leading 49ers on "Sunday Night Football."
A few notes to get you ready, starting with the inactives:
The big news concerns Justin Smith, the 49ers' All-Pro defensive lineman. He's inactive due to an elbow injury that forced him to miss three days of practice last week. Smith's streak of 185 consecutive starts will come to an end.
There are no major surprises among the players the Seahawks listed as inactive. Cornerback Richard Sherman is active after missing practice Thursday and Friday, reportedly appealing his four-game suspension for violating the league's policy on performance-enhancing drugs. According to ESPN's Adam Schefter, Sherman is hoping to have his positive test for Adderall nullified, arguing that the urine sample he provided was contaminated.
There is no word on when the decision on Sherman's appeal will be made. Fellow cornerback Brandon Browner has served two games of his four-game suspension and will be eligible to return following the regular-season finale.
The Seahawks will be without cornerbacks Marcus Trufant and Walter Thurmond, who were both listed as questionable because of hamstring injuries. The rest of Seattle's inactives: cornerback DeShawn Shead, guard Rishaw Johnson, guard John Moffitt, tackle Mike Person and defensive tackle Jaye Howard.
Rookies J.R Sweezy and Jeremy Lane will start at right guard and cornerback, respectively.
Sidney Rice, Seattle's leading receiver, is active despite a sore knee that had him listed as questionable.
The rest of the 49ers' inactives: quarterback Scott Tolzien, wide receiver A.J. Jenkins, safety Trenton Robinson, running back Jewel Hampton, linebacker Clark Haggans and guard Joe Looney.
This prime-time matchup has brought out quite the media contingent. National reporters from ESPN, NFL Network, Yahoo! Sports and Sports Illustrated are among those I've spotted in the press box.
Fans are making their way into the stadium. There is a good deal of red in the stands.
The weather feels appropriate for the matchup between two gritty teams. A light rain is falling, and the forecast calls for more. Forty-five degrees is the listed temperature.
Finally, feel free to join our live chat during the game. Here's that link. Enjoy the game. It should be a good one.
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