The San Francisco 49ers visit the Minnesota Vikings for Week 3 of the NFL preseason. Niner Noise has all your updates from the game, as well as analysis and your comment thread.
Week 3 of the NFL preseason tends to be the biggest dress rehearsal for the regular season, and the San Francisco 49ers took to the road to face the Minnesota Vikings in an exhibition version of Sunday Night Football.
The Niners were coming off a 33-14 loss to the Denver Broncos a week ago. Turnovers and penalties were an issue head coach Kyle Shanahan looked to address during this particular matchup.
But there were other things to watch as well.
San Francisco 49ers
Earlier this week, San Francisco parted ways with linebacker Ahmad Brooks, all but giving third-year pro Eli Harold a chance to solidify his role with the first-team defense.
How would Harold perform under the increased pressure? And how would other position battles, like the offensive line and at running back, pan out over the course of the game?
These topics, and more, were addressed in our preseason Week 3 preview, which you can read here.
It’s important to note there will be no first wave of roster cuts after this week, unlike previous seasons. All NFL teams will have until after Week 4 of the preseason to trim rosters from 90 players down to 53.
As always, Niner Noise has your in-game thread with scoring updates and a comment thread you can participate in at the bottom of the article.
Follow along with us, as both teams go through one more level of preparation for the regular season.
San Francisco opened up on defense to start the game. And rookie linebacker Reuben Foster tackled Minnesota running back Dalvin Cook for a 5-yard loss to open up the first drive.
The Vikings ended up going 3-and-out.
After moving the ball into Minnesota territory, quarterback Brian Hoyer found wide receiver Marquise Goodwin for a 46-yard touchdown off a play fake.
This kind of chemistry will be good to watch, if it continues.
The Vikings managed to move the ball midfield the following drive, but San Francisco’s defensive front still managed to provide a ton of pressure. EDGE Arik Armstead managed one quarterback hit and a combined sack with safety Eric Reid.
Minnesota was forced to punt again.
The 49ers managed to get deep into Vikings territory towards the end of the first quarter, thanks largely to running back Carlos Hyde getting involved in the receiving game.
On the first snap of the quarter, Hoyer found Hyde again for a 24-yard touchdown pass at the 14:55 mark. Hyde’s route, out of the backfield, found a perfect hole within Minnesota’s secondary.
The Niners went up 14-0 on the play and subsequent extra point.
San Francisco’s defense, still holding its own, forced another punt on its following stand. And through this point in the game, the Niners surprisingly had just one penalty for five yards.
Not bad at all.
The 49ers had to punt their following drive. And so did the Vikings — their third of the game so far.
Hoyer nearly hit Goodwin again on a deep pass, but the receiver bobbled the third-down attempt, forcing a Niners punt. Speaking of bobbles, Vikings quarterback Sam Bradford had a few from receiver Stefon Diggs, which also led to another Minnesota punt at the two-minute mark.
Yet the subsequent 49ers drive faltered, as an interior rush got to Hoyer through the middle to force a punt with 38 seconds left.
Minnesota nearly managed to get into a last-second field-goal situation, but the clock ran to zero to end the half.
San Francisco opened on offense to start the second half. And with Hoyer’s night over, the Niners turned the ball over to rookie quarterback C.J. Beathard, who seems to have the No. 2 spot on the depth chart in his grasps.
It mattered not, though, as the 49ers went 3-and-out.
The 49ers defense — consisting mostly of second-string players — managed to limit the Vikings to a 58-yard field goal to give Minnesota’s first points of the game, 14-3 in favor of San Francisco.
Beathard hit wide receiver Louis Murphy, but the Vikings defense managed to pop the ball out of Murphy’s hands and picked it off. Not Beathard’s fault.
This led to a 47-yard missed field goal, and San Francisco took over on offense after the turnover.
The 49ers turned the ball over to running back Matt Breida the following drive, who managed some nice runs to get into Vikings territory. Breida is fighting for a spot on the depth chart and seems to be in good shape.
Yet the Niners drive stalled, leading to a 55-yard field goal from backup kicker Nick Rose to put San Francisco up 17-3.
Backup Vikings quarterback Case Keenum led his offense down into the 49ers red zone, and this led to a touchdown by wide receiver Rodney Adams from nine yards out.
Following the extra point, the Niners’ lead was cut to 17-10.
Beathard was having some difficulties and faced a 3rd-and-23. But he dumped off a screen pass to running back Raheem Mostert, who took it to the house for 87-yard touchdown.
San Francisco went back up 24-10.
But as soon as that happened, Vikings return man Jerick McKinnon returned a kickoff for 108 yards to get those points right back.
Rookie wide receiver Trent Taylor made a nice 18-yard catch, getting hit hard at the end of the play.
And Mostert continued his strong preseason with a handful of impressive runs to get the Niners into the red zone. One of those, a 3-yard rush, found end-zone pay dirt, and San Francisco increased its lead 31-17 after the extra point.
Mostert has a long way to make the 53-man roster but could be impressing other teams looking for a tailback.
The Vikings managed to answer back, scoring a touchdown on a long 75-yard drive to make it a one-score game again.
31-24 in favor of San Francisco.
After a Niners drive stalled just before the two-minute warning, the Vikings started what would likely be their last offensive stand at their own 37-yard line.
Of course, the Vikings were able to get into the red zone with only a few seconds remaining.
And it resulted in a 1-yard touchdown run after cornerback Keith Reaser committed a pass-interference penalty in the end zone.
Following a two-point conversion on a quarterback scramble, the Vikings managed to find a way to come back and won 32-31 in a meaningless thriller.
Please refresh your browser periodically for updates and scoring changes.