49ers Defense: Finish them if the opportunity arises
The 49ers defense was by far and away the best unit on the field against the Cowboys, but there was one trend on the final drive by Dallas that has been overlooked and need to be addressed.
While the Cowboys ultimately never got anywhere close to scoring on the final drive, and it’s ultimately a moot point, the Niners failed to put the game away when the opportunity presented itself in the final few minutes.
Even more so, it happened twice.
Firstly, linebacker Dre Greenlaw dropped an interception that was so gift-wrapped for him, that he was hitting it in stride almost as if quarterback Dak Prescott was targeting him on the play. Had Greenlaw caught the ball, he would have almost certainly run in for the score and taken the game well and truly away.
For the second instance, defensive tackle Arik Armstead had Prescott dead to rights in the end zone as the latter was trying to scramble to avoid a safety on the final drive. The safety would have extended the margin to nine points and ended any notion of a comeback, but instead, Armstead laid a tackle that was entirely too ineffective and allowed him to get out.
Perhaps Armstead was too afraid of a roughing-the-passer penalty, but that was a golden opportunity.
And those golden opportunities need to be taken advantage of against the Eagles. They’re not likely to provide many, so the 49ers need to make sure they’re able to capitalize.