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San Francisco 49ers Get Punched in the Mouth in Season Opener

Posted By Jason Rossi On Sep 12 2010 @ 9:09 pm In San Francisco 49ers | 4 Comments

In today’s season opener, the 49ers realized that it takes a lot more then football pundits saying they will win the NFC West; they actually have to go out and win the games.

 In the first quarter, the 49ers offensive line looked strong, providing Alex Smith ample time to complete passes.  Smith finished the game 26/45 (57.8%) for 225 yards and 2 interceptions, one of which was returned for a touchdown. The running game was non-existent with a total of 49 yards, with Frank Gore picking up 38 yards.  This is a not a good sign if the team wants to base their offense on the run.

 As the game moved into the 2nd half and the 49ers found themselves down 14-6, Smith was having trouble completing his passes.  He was forced to run from the pocket on a number of occasions and several of his throws missed their intended targets.

 The 49ers completed only 1 of 15 3rd down conversions, and 2 of 3 on 4th down conversions.  This tells a story of the offense not being able to continue drives, and the coaching forced to be aggressive and go for it on 4th down.  They also found themselves inside the 10 yard line twice and only walked away with field goals on both trips.  These areas will need to be improved if the 49ers hope to have any success this season, much less in the playoffs.

 The defense did not fair much better.  Matt Hasselbeck threw for only 170 yards and two touchdowns, plus ran one in.  The two touchdowns passes could have been stopped had the 49ers secondary played their man and not tried to jump routes.

The front seven did a poor job putting pressure on Hasselbeck, recording only one sack.  Tackling was generally okay, but improvement would be a good thing.

 Finally, the 49ers were exceptionally sloppy in terms of penalties, having 8 penalties for 60 yards.  This issue started to appear during the pre-season and was something that Mike Singletary should have addressed by now.  His players were playing on the edge and went over the line a few too many times.

 There is a lot of work the 49ers need to do so they can have the season that has been expected.  Luckily this is only game 1, but they better right the ship sooner then later, or I’ll be writing about the one that got away, again.

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