No. 2: Defensive woes continued
Over the past several weeks, the 49ers defense has seen improvement in some areas while continuing to struggle in others. Many players with experience under their belt have joined the long list of injured, with the Niners have relying on rookies for much of the season.
While it’s been great for younger players to start and gain those valuable snaps, it’s come with a price. And while defensive coordinator Robert Saleh’s position is likely safe, there is room for improvement and the pressure will be on next year.
The defense struggled to contain the Rams’ run game, something they relied on heavily throughout the game. The Rams put up 155 rushing yards, with Anderson recording 23 carries for 132 yards, averaging 5.7 yards per carry.
While quarterback Jared Goff completed 15 passes from 26 attempts for 199 yards. He had a completion rate of 57.7 percent and passer rating of 121.6 and four touchdowns.
The secondary continued to miss assignments and blow coverage with several Rams receivers left untouched and wide open resulting in easy touchdowns. Whether it be miscommunication among the safeties and corners or simply not looking where they need to, it needs to be fixed for 2019.
With the 49ers deciding to rest cornerback Richard Sherman for the second half, young corner Greg Mabin replaced him. And just like previous occasions throughout the season, Mabin was targeted straight away, with Goff throwing over the top for a 29-yard touchdown from wide receiver Josh Reynolds:
Reynolds would also get his second touchdown with an easy 2-yard pass after being left unmarked.
The 49ers managed only two quarterback hits and zero sacks. However, linebacker’s Fred Warner and Elijah Lee continued to be quite the team, ranking both first and second in tackles. Warner recorded 14 tackles while Lee came away with 10, including one for a loss.