49ers game grades from deflating Week 9 loss to Cardinals

James Conner #6 of the Arizona Cardinals (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)
James Conner #6 of the Arizona Cardinals (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images) /
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Josh Norman, Kliff Kingsbury, San Francisco 49ers, Arizona Cardinals
San Francisco 49ers cornerback Josh Norman (26) and Arizona Cardinals head coach Kliff Kingsbury (right) Mandatory Credit: Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports /

42. Final. 31. 42. 17

The 49ers lost ugly to a shorthanded Cardinals team in Week 9, and the game grades reflect just how low things have gotten for Kyle Shanahan and Co.

The San Francisco 49ers are experiencing an all-time low under head coach Kyle Shanahan. This, after the Niners dropped a flop of a game in the 31-17 Week 9 home loss to the Arizona Cardinals, which extends an already abysmal string of recent performances at Levi’s Stadium where San Francisco hasn’t won in over a year’s time.

The 2020 blowout at the hands of the Miami Dolphins was bad, yes. But at least Shanahan could point to the growing number of injuries his team was suffering as an excuse.

This time, it was the Cardinals who were shorthanded because of injury, missing quarterback Kyler Murray, wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins, defensive tackle J.J. Watt, wide receiver A.J. Green and eventually running back Chase Edmonds because of injuries or being on the reserve/COVID list.

Shanahan, in his postgame presser, said he didn’t have any answers why things have gone so poorly this season for the 3-5 49ers. Other players, too, echoed those sentiments.

And, as we see in these Week 9 position grades, things have gotten out of control in a bad, bad way.

49ers Special Teams

At least it wasn’t terrible from a special teams perspective.

Kicker Robbie Gould, making his way off injured reserve after suffering a groin injury earlier this season, made his lone field-goal try and both of his extra-point attempts. Punter Mitch Wishnowsky pinned Arizona’s offense inside the 20-yard line twice on his four punts.

Most importantly, the Niners didn’t lose any balls on returns either, although there wasn’t exactly anything of note on those returns or from the coverage units when the Cardinals received the ball.

Nothing to complain about here, but that’s not the trend moving forward, unfortunately.

Grade: B+