Grades from 49ers slugfest win vs. Cowboys in NFL playoffs
49ers Defensive Grades vs. Cowboys
The 49ers defensive line was solid in controlling the trenches, but for the second week in a row, beyond a singular big play (Charles Omenihu’s forced fumble, Samson Ebukam and the rest of the D-line combining for a huge sack in the Cowboys’ second-to-last drive), the defensive pressure was unable to truly get home.
There was more pressure than last week, but the Niners D-line will be going up against perhaps the best offensive line in the NFL in Philadelphia, and they will have to be able to get home.
Fred Warner is the best linebacker in the NFL, perhaps the best the NFL has seen in recent history. His ability to cover receivers down the middle of the field is one of the most valuable skills in the league. He erases the middle of the field with ease, taking away most offenses’ staples.
He was at his most elite level against the Cowboys, finishing with nine tackles, an interception, and some of the more outrageous coverages from a middle linebacker.
The 49ers secondary did its job. They were able to take the ball away (an interception from Deommodore Lenoir and great coverage by Jimmie Ward that allowed Warner to intercept the ball) and keep the Dallas receivers in front of them.
That said, there were a few too many easy yards given to the receivers due to soft coverage, Talanoa Hufanga mixed equal parts explosive blitzes with missed tackles, and another deep shot completion against this secondary.
But in the playoffs, they played well enough for a win.