49ers vs. Falcons: 5 painful takeaways from San Francisco’s Week 6 loss

Rashaan Evans #54 of the Atlanta Falcons tackles Jimmy Garoppolo #10 of the San Francisco 49ers (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
Rashaan Evans #54 of the Atlanta Falcons tackles Jimmy Garoppolo #10 of the San Francisco 49ers (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images) /
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Final. 14. 42. 28. 44

The 49ers suffered an embarrassing Week 6 loss to the Falcons in which injury shortages and lackluster play both played a massive role.

The San Francisco 49ers had a lot of things working against them entering Week 6’s game against the Atlanta Falcons.

For starters, the second game of a back-to-back two-game road trip can always be challenging, especially when it’s on the East Coast. And while the Niners stayed back east in the wake of their Week 5 win over the Carolina Panthers, it doesn’t remove the fact road trips are hard.

On top of that, though, fans and analysts are going to point out just how shorthanded San Francisco was in this game, a 28-14 loss to Atlanta in which head coach Kyle Shanahan’s squad looked almost entirely outclassed on all three phases.

The 49ers were missing six of their defensive starters entering the game, and that was readily apparent with the Falcons easily carving up coordinator DeMeco Ryans’ backups and reserves.

Unfortunately, in a game where the Niners offense needed to shoulder the load, it ultimately couldn’t.

And that leads us to our first of five notable takeaways from Sunday’s defeat.

49ers vs. Falcons takeaway No. 5: Jimmy Garoppolo can’t carry the load

In all fairness to quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo, he wasn’t terrible in Week 6.

Sure, he tossed two interceptions. But one of them is forgivable, given that it was a desperation attempt late in the second half with mere seconds remaining to help get San Francisco in position to tie things up at 21 apiece.

However, with the 49ers struggling to move the ball on the ground and having difficulty reclaiming momentum, Garoppolo simply didn’t have quite enough to shoulder the offense.

Yes, his two touchdown passes to Brandon Aiyuk helped close the gap and ultimately assisted in the game not turning into an Atlanta blowout.

But, as we’ve seen so many times before, Garoppolo went cold in the second half.

Generally speaking, the Niners don’t want Garoppolo dropping back to pass 30-plus times in a game. Yet with the run game struggling, ultimately finishing with just 50 yards and averaging 3.1 yards per carry, Garoppolo had to do more.

He wasn’t able to.