New England Patriots 30
San Francisco 49ers 21
Dull, lifeless and frustrating, the 49ers play in yesterdays lost. J.T. O’ Sullivan held onto the ball finally, was sacked only once and passed for three touchdowns but had three interceptions. Isaac Bruce had two touchdowns but on only four receptions. Frank Gore was forgotten by Mike Martz rushing only twelve times gaining a paltry 54 yards. And most importantly the defense gave up 30 points for the second straight week and could not get off the field in the second half. The Niners had the ball for just over twenty mintues, while the D allowed the Pats to hold onto it for almost forty minutes. Way too long for a team to trying to pull out a win in the fourth quarter.
It is hard to find positives in a loss so ugly and within reach of turning into a win. The Niners were up 14-7 well into the second quarter but the Patriots put up 20 unanswered points. The offense finally got onto the field in the fourth quarter and scored a touchdown cutting the lead to 27-21 only to not get the ball back. Delaine Walker, Vernon Davis and Arnaz Battle dropped important passes. Walker’s being the most costly in the first quarter as he dropped a potential first-down and then some only to have it hit off his hands with no defenders around. The secondary was horrendous and defensive coordinator Greg Manusky needs to be called out for not making the important adjustments needed in the second half for the second week in a row. Bill Belichick made his offensive and defensive adjustments so the blame also lies with Martz and Mike Nolan. The most disappointing thing in the loss is we have seen the 49ers D which has been the strongest force on this team get burned again. The offense has its work cut out but the D needs to learn how to make the important stops. When you play minor league football against one of the best major league teams then results like yesterday will continue even against the bad teams.
Next Up: @ home against the Philadelphia Eagles (2-3)
Game three of Schedule Hell. The Eagles are fresh off their own frustrating loss at home. This won’t be easy.