No. 3: Quarterback Nick Mullens struggled under pressure
Mullens continued his run as a competent starting quarterback. He again put out reasonable numbers, completing 23 passes from 33 attempts for 282 yards. He had a completion rate of 69.7 percent and a passer rating of 88.2 with three touchdowns.
Where Mullens came unstuck was with his three recorded interceptions, two of which led to the Rams getting into the end zone.
Linebacker Cory Littleton would intercept a pass intended for wide receiver Richie James, returning the ball to the San Francisco 13-yard line. The Rams would score two plays later, with running back C.J. Anderson rushing for 1-yard into the end zone.
Littleton managed to get his hands on the ball again with his second interception, returning it 19-yards for a pick six:
Mullens has seen a decrease in production when placed under pressure throughout the season, one of his few weaknesses and something Niners Nation’s Oscar Aparicio pointed out with some stats if you click on the link.
Mullens was not helped by his offensive line for much of the game, which struggled against the Rams’ dominant defensive front. He received three sacks with nine quarterback hits, along with six pass deflections.
Defensive tackle Aaron Donald kept up the pressure with the pass rush until he was rested late in the game. Lineman, including rookie tackle Mike McGlinchey, were no match for Donald who managed one sack, four tackles and three quarterback hits.
With Mullens performing far better than most had expected for his NFL debut, expect him to be sitting behind quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo for the 2019 season.