Al Messerschmidt/Getty Photographs
Kendall Hunter and the 49ers cleared the hurdle posed by Tampa Bay to win their fourth in a row.
TAMPA, Fla. – If they didn’t already have enough warning signs, the
San Francisco 49ers
had another reason to be leery the night before they boarded their cross-country journey when the
, arguably the most effective team in soccer, stumbled at residence to the lesser
San Diego Chargers
“Completely,” 49ers left deal with Joe Staley. “It’s the NFL. Anybody can lose.”
But what has been taking place when the 49ers play a group with a less-than-stellar file? They dominate. It occurred again Sunday because the 49ers dispatched the Tampa Bay Buccaneers 33-14. San Francisco is now 7-0 against groups with a dropping report. None of the games has been close.
Jim Harbaugh’s team does not fall for traps.
“We don’t let down,” San Francisco fullback Bruce Miller stated flatly after the sport.
And there was no larger likelihood of a letdown for the 49ers than Sunday in Tampa Bay. This had all of the appearances of a stumble sport.
They have been coming off their greatest victory of the season, a last-second house win over heated rival Seattle. They had to make a 5-plus-hour flight from California to Florida to play a workforce with a dropping report. It was their first true early game the season. (San Francisco played Jacksonville in London in Week 8, but the 49ers were in England all week, so their physique clocks had adjusted to the time change.)
Throw in the fact that Harbaugh’s name was connected to the job opening at College of Texas, and there were sufficient distractions to make this recreation significantly scary for San Francisco. However the 49ers saved on cruising.
“We knew if we laid an egg immediately,” middle Jonathan Goodwin said, “the Seattle recreation wouldn’t have meant something.”
The 49ers are now 10-four. They have won four video games in a row, a formidable response to a two-recreation November skid by which they lost to Carolina and New Orleans by a complete of four points. That stumble had ended a 5-sport win streak.
Now, the 49ers are hot once once more and can clinch a playoff bid subsequent week.
The 49ers are in place to make the playoffs as a result of they do what good groups are speculated to do – they beat up on unhealthy groups. It’s been a theme all season. Harbaugh and his employees do a masterful job of retaining the players focused. They had the 49ers considering the Jaguars were 7-zero as a substitute of zero-7 when the groups met in London. This week, the mind sport was an easy sell. The Buccaneers got here into the sport enjoying well, having won four of their previous five games after beginning the season 0-8.
Nevertheless, the end end result was the identical. The 49ers averted what could have been an inexcusable loss by merely being better than their opponent. They are now 9-1 in video games that begin at 10 a.m. PT below Harbaugh. They are, by far, the best West Coast staff in the NFL when it comes to playing throughout the nation.
It’s the mindset that Harbaugh brings. He doesn’t let his guys slip mentally. There was no chance he was going to permit the Texas discuss to have an effect on his team. It wasn’t talked about, and don’t expect it to be. Harbaugh has no intention of leaving. All expectations level to him and the group agreeing on a contract extension (his current deal ends after the 2015 season) to make him one of the richest coaches within the NFL.
Sunday was one other reminder why he’s definitely worth the cash.
The 49ers got here out prepared for enterprise. They introduced their presence early, leaping to a 7-zero lead and forcing two three-and-outs on protection.
“That was essential,” said San Francisco cross-rusher Aldon Smith, who had two sacks.”It set the tone for the remainder of the day.”
The game did get shut for a bit when the Buccaneers scored a touchdown to make it 20-14 with 14:fifty four to go. But the 49ers, once once more, enforced their will. They launched into a 17-play drive, culminating in a discipline aim, that lopped greater than 10 minutes off the clock. They then added extra 10 more factors in the next two minutes to take any intrigue out of it.
“It’s an indication of a disciplined staff,” Staley mentioned. “We buckled down when we needed to.”
The 49ers dominated on either side of the ball. Offensively, as common, San Francisco was not excellent. It had to settle for four discipline targets for the second straight sport, and one of many crew’s three touchdowns came on a particular teams. The 49ers should discover a way to end more drives within the crimson zone.
However, they moved the ball effectively and continued to reap the benefits of receiver Michael Crabtree being on the sphere. His presence continues to help quarterback Colin Kaepernick, receiver Anquan Boldin and tight end Vernon Davis. Together with Crabtree, all of them had strong video games.
Kaepernick used his mobility and had huge success outdoors the pocket. Harbaugh mentioned his quarterback “had a monster sport.” In line with ESPN Stats & Info, Kaepernick had maybe his best game of the season when facing an ordinary four-man rush. His season completion proportion coming into the game against that alignment was 58.7. Sunday, it was seventy one.4.
The 49ers dominated on the ground as standard, gaining 187 yards on 40 carries.
And it was merely one other good defensive effort. The Buccaneers were averaging less than a yard per play for many of the first half. The 49ers’ protection allowed the Buccaneers to transform on third down once in 10 tries.
The 49ers now flip their attention to what will likely be an emotional Week 16. They host Atlanta subsequent Monday night time within the final game at Candlestick Park. Will probably be a storyline all week, culminating in lots of tributes.
But when we know anything about Harbaugh’s group, they won’t affected by the scene.