In a game that very much resembled game one against Green Bay, the 49ers took to the air to beat the Washington Native Americans 27-6. A satisfying win, but a fairly disinterested opponent. The Washington players, especially RobertGriffinIII-VIII, seems more intent on getting his coach fired than actually playing football. He seemed to be putting himself IN harm’s way, and avoiding NOT getting sacked. Why? No idea. To show off his toughness? Could be. It just seems he isn’t nearly the QB he was last year. Yes, he likely isn’t fully recovered from his knee injury, and therein lies the rub. My thought is RGIII still harbors a grudge against Mike Shanahan for the knee injury and subsequent worsening of the injury in that playoff game last year, and he’s tanking it a little. Then you have the potshots at Daddy and Sonny Shanny, and you have the makings of a lost season. The thing is, RG holds all the cards, owns the chips, and rents the table they play on in DC. He isn’t going anywhere. Shanny is. He’s rocking-chair-bound after this debacle of a season is over for the soon-to-be-renamed-WNAs.
Anyhow, back to the game. In a very exciting (for me) turn of events, the Niners used some quick passes on their opening drive. Nice 12 yard outs to Manningham on 3-step drops got the ball out quickly and effectively. Of course, after the 1st TD drive, they stopped doing that, and the offense bogged down some. Much like the Green Bay game, DC packed the box with 8-9 guys and dared the Niners to pass. After some fits and starts, the passing game took off. Kappy threw some lasers downfield to Anquan Boldin, and VD had himself a night. Kappy also showed some nice touch on a couple sideline passes to VD, and even Norm McDonald had a real nice gain on a 25 yard crossing route. The pass blocking was sopt-on for a change, and it helped Kappy immensely.
Defensively, the team was stout and unbreakable. Ahmad Brooks continued his hellacious run as the most disruptrive LB on the team, which is pretty incredible when the Niners have Patrick Willis, NaVorro Bowman, and a resurgent Aldon Smith back there with him. RGWeeee threw a very ill-advised pass under great pressure from Aldon Smith for an easy Donte Whitner pick. Justin Smith had himself his best game in a while clogging running lanes and pushing his way into the the backfield on numerous occasions. Washington may be scuffling, but they do have the #3 rusher in the NFL, the #3 WR, and a solid offiesive line, so keeping these guys in check was a feather in their collective caps.
All in all, a solid effort on the road. Big plusses to me were the return of the pass rush, the slight adjustments in getting the ball out of Kappy’s hands quicker, and the O line play in general. The Niners couldn’t get Gore going, but the 9 man fronts Washington showed pretty much dictated the Niners going to the passing game. It worked today. Kappy hit some very tight windows, and Boldin continued his excellent play. Breing on the Rams . . .