Monday, October 28, 2013

5 Burning Questions Answered

The 49ers destroyed Jacksonville on Sunday 42-10, and it wasn't even that close.  The level of play for the two teams was so far apart that at times it had the feel of a high school game.  Think De La Salle against almost any team from Northern California.  Just look at the first 4 possessions for each team, while the 49ers put up 291 yards and 4 TD's the Jaguars were able to muster a grand total of 56 yards and 4 punts.

Let's take a look at the answer to Friday's question:

Will the 49ers stay focused enough after a long road trip, with a bye coming up and facing a winless opponent to play their game?

As the total offense numbers above indicate the 49ers were focused and ready to go, burying the Jaguars from the onset.

Some key takeaways from the game for me:

  • On the 49ers first possession Frank Gore gained 24 yards, including a 19 yard TD run on runs from the Pistol formation.  If they can carry this forward against better competition this is a significant occurrence.  Many, myself included, have pointed out to the lack of production from Gore this season from the shotgun.  This was the one piece to the run game that was struggling, and this might be a sign that they have turned the corner.

  • For the first time this season the 49ers did not have any 3 and outs, and have only 3 in their last 19 possessions (2 games).  This is a significant improvement for a team that a few weeks ago was near the top of the league in 3 and outs at just over 41%

  • The 49ers offense has dominated in the first half of the last two games, with a total of 45 points, and putting them up by 17 and 25 at the break respectively.  The key to this success has been Colin Kaepernick.  In the first half the past two weeks Kaepernick has posted a QB rating of 114.57 while going 16-24 for 248 yards and 1 TD.  In addition, Kaepernick has run the ball 11 times for 105 yards and 3 TD's.  

  • The domination has not been limited to the offense.  The 49ers defense has also been dominant over the last two weeks in the first half.  Against Tennessee two weeks ago the defense gave up 99 first half yards while the team built a 17-0 lead, and on Sunday the Jaguars were able to put together only 116 yards, 60 of those coming at the end of the half against a soft defense with the score at 28-0.  
The 49ers now go into their bye week at 6-2.  Time to rest their bodies, get a few more key players back from the injury list, and prepare for a second half run that will see an increase in the strength of opponents.  

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