Game balls all around. Jason Verrett, Raheem Mostert, Jimmy G, Deebo Samuel, George Kittle, Brandon Aiyuk, the offensive line, and especially Kyle Shanahan and Robert Saleh. In order to develop a rhythm with his quarterback and the offense, the 49ers came out throwing quick passes (where have I screamed that lately? Oh yeah, 3 days ago) and moving the chains, The opening drive was a thing of west coast beauty with swing passes, misdirection runs, and little to nothing downfield. the 1st half in general was a thing of beauty as the 49ers scored 3 TDs, one on a 4th and 2 from the Ram 44 yard line. The 3rd TD came as Shanahan was trying to run the 2nd quarter out while still scoring a TD. It worked but it was a bit annoying as I felt we were too conservative on the drive and we could have pushed harder. Still and all stopped the Rams next possession, and we had another chance to score. We took a couple deep shots, but being up 21-6 wa about as good as anyone could have hoped.
Defensively was definitely a mixed bag, as the Rams both ran and threw very effectively at times, but were also shut down at other times. But Jason Verrett made the play of the night on a 4th and goal play at the 1 when he intercepted a Jared Goff pass in the back of the end zone. The beauty of the play was that it got us out of what would have been 1st and 10 from the 1. Whether the Rams shot themselves in the feet with penalties, or suffered dropped passes, the 49er defense held the Rams out of the end zone for 2 of the 4 quarters. No mean feat.
Special teams even got into the act with Dion Jordan blocking an extra point, Robbie Gould providing a 49 yard field goal, and Tavarius Moore downed a punt on the 2″ line to pin the Rams deep. This led to our only 2nd half points.
A much as Shanny deserves a game ball for protecting Jimmy G, and neutralizing NFL sack leader Aaron Donald, I didn’t like the ultra-conservative nature of his play calling in the 2nd half. He relied too much on the defense to stop the Rams, and the 40 yard strike to Josh Reynolds was inevitable. The one shot Shanny took was the 3rd and 7 with 1:55 that sealed the game. However, it took a monster effort from Deebo, who broke 4 tackles on the ‘pass’ play to get that game-sealing 1st down. Other than that it was a bunch of 3 and outs for the most part as we passed ONCE on 1st down. My biggest pet peeve.
Still and all, a huge response by the players and coaches to the steaming turd that was the Miami game. This game was ginormous as the team needed a win at home against a division foe.