Here we go! This is the beginning of the rest of the season. Are we contenders? Are we pretenders? Can we break the streak of the Cards and Colt Fucking McCoy? AZ seems to me to be playing better with McCoy rather than Murray, but I guess we will see for sure tonight. The team is getting healthy and the table is set for the Niners to make a serious run at the NFC West crown. Something that would make the playoff run a bit easier. Win this game and we are one up on Seattle with our previous win over them.
We came out of the Sandy Eggo game fairly unscathed, so there’s that. And we should have Greenlaw the whole game unless he gets another bullshit ejection. I don’t think we get carved up like we did last year against these guys as we were hurting, and we didn’t have Greenlaw or Al-Shaair back then.
I see that game last year a lot like the KC game this year. Without our two fastest linebackers in Greenlaw and Al-Shaair, we got cooked on screens, WR screens, and simple dump-offs that our edge guys just let happen by playing into the penetration they got. Our LBs got washed out and every screen pass was a 15 yard gain stopped by the secondary.
The Rams were doing this to us in our last game with them with Kupp (with Greenlaw and Al-Shaair), but the Niners countered by bringing them in closer to stop that shit. Something I think we will do again. One thing I would like to see is Ryans to ratchet up the pressure early. Forget looking to see if the base defense can handle what is going on. In the Charger game we gave up that first TD way to easily by playing base and not dialing up any pressure. Sure there was a couple busted coverages on the big plays, but they did hit a lot of medium to deep passes early with no pressure on Herbert.
We survived the high-flying Chargers by getting a lot of pressure on Herbert, and stifling their run game. Much the same is in order. Sure wish we had AA back, but he’s got a couple more weeks it looks like. If we can stop the run and force them to pass, we should be able to wreak havoc.
The game, as all others this season will go the way that the offense goes. AZ isn’t super explosive, but they have put up some big numbers this season. Shanahan REALLY needs to come up with some different red zone plays rather than simply running up the middle on 1st and 2nd down. The pass that Aiyuk dropped in the end zone was unfortunate, but that should have been the 1ST DOWN play.
Yeah, we have CMC and Mitchell, but we also have Kittle, Deebo, Aiyuk, and CMC as a pass catcher out of the backfield. We HAVE to get on these guys early and keep them down. I think we finally put together a solid offensive game. 31-17 Niners.