The 49ers will play four of their last five games against NFC West opponents, starting today with the St. Louis Rams. A 49ers win would wrap up the NFC West title.
The 49ers are relatively healthy this week with everyone probable with the exception of Braylon Edwards who is questionable. Sam Bradford and Chris Long are both listed as questionable for the Rams and A.J. Feeley would get the start if Bradford cannot go.
49ers Inactives – QB Scott Tolzien, WR Braylon Edwards, CB Shawntae Spencer, FB Moran Norris, G Daniel Kilgore, G Mike Person, NT Ian Williams.
Rams Inactives – QB Sam Bradford, S Darian Stewart, RB Cadillac Williams, LB Josh Hull, T Kevin Hughes, T Mark LeVoir and DE C.J. Ah You.
The 49ers received to start the game and the kickoff return team was hyped as Tony Montana started playing at The Stick…a new ritual for the special teams unit. Ginn returned the kick to the 28. After an 8-yard gain by Gore, Alex Smith scrambled on second down and got just enough to move the chains. On 3rd and 8, Smith tried to hit Davis over the middle. Mikell was all over him, but apparently not enough to draw a flag.
After Lee’s touchback on the punt, the Rams started their drive at the 20. Feely had Pettis open on third down, but he couldn’t make the catch as the Rams went three and out. The punt rolled out of bounds at the 36.
On the first play of the drive, Smith rolled right and hit a wide open Michael Crabtree for a gain of 14. On 3rd and 5, Smith threw a dart to Kyle Williams down at the 35. Two plays later, Smith found Davis crossing short. Davis made the first man miss for a gain of 13. Akers hit a 36-yard field goal to give the 49ers the lead.
49ers 3 – Rams 0
Patrick Willis stayed down on the ground after missing a tackle on Bruce Miller. Willis was able to walk off favoring his right leg. Hopefully it’s just a cramp. Feely hit Nick Miller on 3rd and long, but Aldon Smith stopped him well short of the first down. Ginn called for the fair catch at the 13.
Standout Stat: Frank Gore is just two yards away from becoming the 49ers all-time leading rusher.
Highlight Reel: I loved seeing the 49ers fired up as Tony Montana was playing before the kickoff. It should be a fun tradition going forward.
Put it in Perspective: After sustaining a hamstring injury, it is doubtful that Willis will return to the game. The 49ers defense hasn’t given up much against the Rams offense, but they may have to go the rest of the way without their captain.
On 3rd and long, Smith hit Kendall Hunter who nearly picked up a first down. Harbaugh was going to go for it, but after a false start by Adam Snyder, he elected to punt.
Aldon Smith recovered Feeley’s fumble at the 6-yard line. The 49ers got down to the goal line, but were stopped and had to settle for another field goal.
49ers 6 – Rams 0
The Rams were backed up because of a chop block penalty and Ginn signaled for a fair catch at the 35. The 49ers nearly blocked the punt.
On 3rd down, Smith hit Crabtree on a perfectly thrown slant pass for a gain of 15 and a first down. Gore broke a 20-yard run up the middle and was barely tripped up at the 10-yard line. The 49ers had to settle for a field goal once again. Akers’ 28-yarder put the 49ers on top 9-0.
49ers 9 – Rams 0
The Rams went three and out after a huge sack by Larry Grant on third down. The punt rolled out of bounds at the SF 44.
The 49ers were hurt by several holding penalties on their final drive of the half and Alex Smith was sacked on the final play as they were unable to get into field goal range.
Standout Stat: The 49ers lead the Rams in time of possession, 21:36 to 8:24.
Highlight Reel: Larry Grant came on a well timed blitz and dropped Feeley for a big sack on third down.
Put it in Perspective: The 49ers have again struggled to get touchdowns in the red zone. They have outplayed the Rams to this point, but they only lead by two scored. They’ll kickoff to the Rams to start the second half. A dropped touchdown by Vernon Davis also hurt the 49ers. If the defense continues to keep the Rams offense in check, the 49ers will have plenty of opportunities to pull away in the second half.
Feeley hit Jackson on a check down on the first play for a gain of 11. Brandon Lloyd then made a big play down the left sideline against Brown, but the drive ended with an interception by Dashon Goldson. Feeley was hit by Haralson as he threw and it was an easy pick for Goldson.
The 49ers ran two end around in a raw, the first to Ted Ginn and the second to Delanie Walker. Smith then faked the handoff and then threw a strike to Crabtree for a 52-yard touchdown. Crabtree never had to break his stride.
49ers 16 – Rams 0
Smith hit Ginn on a comeback on the first play of the drive. Ginn cut back and had room to run, but Kyle Williams was flagged for a block in the back. Williams made up for it two plays later on an end around for a gain of 25. The drive again stalled in the end zone as Hunter was dropped for a loss of 7 on third and short. Akers connected on the 34-yard field goal to extend the lead.
49ers 19 – Rams 0
On third down, Aldon Smith absolutely destroyed LT Adam Goldberg and sacked Feeley.
The 49ers drive stalled at midfield as Smith was sacked by Hall on third down.
Standout Stat: Alex Smith has a QB rating of 119.1, pretty good considering he had another touchdown pass that was dropped.
Highlight Reel: Smith couldn’t have thrown a better pass to Crrabtree on his 52-yard touchdown.
Put it in Perspective: The 49ers are one quarter away from being crowned NFC West Champs.
The 49ers defense forced another three and out and Ginn returned the punt to the 40.
The 49ers offense then connected on another big play, this one a 56-yard touchdown pass to Kyle Williams. Smith hit Williams on a comeback and he turned and outran the Rams defense.
49ers 26 – Rams 0
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