49ers offense has best game, but defense hands to the win to Saints

SANTA CLARA — The 49ers’ offense couldn’t overcome the 49ers’ defense during a 41-23 loss to the New Orleans Saints Sunday afternoon.

The offense played its best game of the season, despite committing four turnovers — two of which occurred in the red zone.

Running back DuJuan Harris gained 142 yards from scrimmage and scored a touchdown on a 47-yard catch-and-run down the sideline. Wide receiver Quinton Patton caught 6 passes for 106 yards — the best performance of his career. And Colin Kaepernick passed for 398 yards and posted a quarterback rating of 102.3.

In total, the offense gained 486 yards and averaged 8.5 yards per play. Great numbers.

But not nearly good enough to beat the Saints.

That’s because the Niners’ defense was horrendous. How horrendous, you ask? It gave up 571 yards, and allowed a running back (this week it was Mark Ingram) to gain at least 100 yards on the ground for the seventh-game in a row — an NFL record.

Click here to read the rest of my game story.

This article has 81 Comments

  1. Best day for offense? Against a defense almost as pathetic as the ‘Niners! This is what were going to brag about? Oh for God’s sake! As I have often stated, the team will not win another game this year and good, smart people wouldn’t want them too. Silly people talk about how good there offense looked today! Give me a break!

    1. They only scored 23 against a horrible defense. They had four turnovers. The second half they got shutdown. If the defense could make a few plays they may have had a chance. The defense would fit right into the Big 12.

  2. So … now the question becomes … at what point do we conclude that Jim Tomsula was a football genius for somehow squeezing out five wins last year coaching this pathetic franchise?

    1. Mid,

      That is a telling article. Does this staff do anything right?

      Lack of veteran leadership comes into play too. This defense wouldn’t dare clown around if Willis and J Smith were still around.

      1. Well, they have money for banners for the next two home games — the second one to celebrate the franchise worst nine-game skid, with Tom Brady at hand to help reach that landmark.

  3. Oh Puhlease. Let’s not begin the premature celebration. The saints D have given up 25 + points 5 times this year. They have given up 30+ in half their games. Let’s see how the niners do against the Cards.

    Nothing has changed.

      1. Yeah, Buckner’s grade in past weeks has been inflated by getting some pressure on pass plays, but he was a no show in that department against the Saints to go with his run D struggles.

            1. I think Kelly wants to put the blame on Baalke, and firing O’Neil would shift the blame to Kelly’s coaching staff. Just a guess.

              1. Totally agree. It seems pretty clear when you hear Kelly talk that he’s saying, “what do you expect me to do with this group?”

              2. Kelly knew what he had going into the job. He was foolish to think he had a legit QB and he had to have seen the lack of talent on the entire offensive side of the ball. I’m sorry but no excuses for him!
                He overestimated his ability to coach this team and shame on him for not pushing the front office to get him the personnel he needs to run his weak system.
                AND if could not persuade Baalke to get him some groceries, shame on him again!

      2. Buckner is a situational player looking for a situation. 33 snaps; 1 pressure; 1 hurry. Nothing against him but he is a number one draft choice taking up space.

      3. I’m not sure what they coach Buckner or any of the d-lineman to do. It looks like they shoot a gap and go straight up field. It’s like every single d-lineman is a 1 gap player so the offensive lineman allow them to pick their gap and then just shield block them. The LB’s are too slow to fill or they don’t understand their assignment. I don’t think they have any d-lineman who are 2 gap players that stand up the O-lineman then read the RB and shed the block. At least I haven’t seen that at all but maybe I haven’t been watching the line closely enough. Having all your d-lineman as 1 gap players makes for huge running holes. This defense is the perfect storm of an incompetent GM matched with a bad defensive coaching staff. Bad talent and bad scheme = historically bad run defense.

    1. The grades were a more accurate reflection this week for sure. Thing is Buckner and Armstead weren’t good against the run in College either. Both were just big physical specimens who showed some pass rush ability and physical attributes that Coaches believe they can morph into high end impact players. I really didn’t want either one of them because they didn’t stand out consistently. You have to look at the play on the field and keep from falling in love with size and potential, at least when it comes to high first round picks. I’m not going to go so far as to say they are busts, because they can be good contributors if Coached right and used properly, but it’s another example of Baalke drafting players who were not worth their draft spot. I still have hope that Buckner can be an effective pass rusher, but not the way they are currently using him. Armstead I see as more of a situational player which is disappointing considering the players they passed up to take him.

      1. I agree completely with your post. Super big guys can man handle average and slightly above average college players but you have to have technique in the NFL. I think both are project players who are being coached by a position coach with no NFL experience. IMO neither were worthy of first round picks. A first round player should be ready to go unless he is drafted by a team that is loaded with talent. I’m sure Kelly and Azzinaro had plenty of input on the Buckner pick, but I have always agreed with your claim that taking both of them was not real smart.

  4. Kelly is a college coach that thinks a game like this was like a victory. So sad this locker room is more content & even less fearful of Kelly than they were of Tomsula..As for our QB–Just like people thot Kaep looked good against 4th stringers in San Diego, New Orleans D is the regular season equivalent. However our superior evaluators will fool thin selves looking at the yardage from this week & keep Kaep in for sure to show his true colors against Arizona and Bill Belichicks D in 2 weeks.
    Kaep is like being tied to an Anchor!

  5. A source tells me that Jed has a new plan. They are going all in on selling season tickets to opponents on a time share basis. I think Paraag came up with that one.

  6. I keep waking up and hoping i see “BREAKING NEWS.. Niners fire balkee”. Then i wake up and realize i live in a spinning globe, and dreams are just that, dreams.

  7. Chip Kelly is trying to protect his players and his coaches. That is understandable. Also, Chip came into this gig with a reputation of not being good with players and with black players in particular. I don’t know if that reputation was warranted or not, but it was his reputation. I think he is working hard to change that reputation and he is being easier on the players than he might be otherwise.

    My fear is that Jim O’Neil, who is a bad Defensive Coordinator, will be made the scapegoat, and will probably be fired before the end of the season. That will give the true architect of this Cluster F***, Trent Baalke, another pass. How sad.

    I remember when they fired Harbaugh, Baalke said “we were reloading not rebuilding”. What a tool.

  8. Apparently Kaep’s passing is trending in the right direction. Kaep averages 300+ passing yards approximately every 10 games. Will Kaep maintain his consistency time will tell.

  9. The 49ers rank 32nd in points per game and yards per game given up. At 193 yards per game, the 49ers are giving up 47 yards more per game than the next worst defense (Browns). On offense the team ranks 32nd in time of possession at an average of 25 minutes and 31 seconds per game. I guess that means that the defense is out on the field for about 34.5 minutes of game time. The Cowboys defense is only on the field for 26 minutes per game, which ranks #1.

  10. I agree with Grant on the defense being atrocious, but to me the key play was the fumble by Davis. Score seven there and you have a four point game with all the momentum on the side of the Niners. Who knows, even the defense might have risen up and played like they belong in the NFL if Davis had not fumbled in that spot.

    Why is Davis on this team? He has shown nothing since being drafted. Once again Baalke is compounding his draft mistakes by hanging on to his draft day busts long after they have shown themselves to be useless.

    1. Fair enough. I don’t think any amount of offense would have overcame the Niners’ defense yesterday. The Saints could have scored as many points as they needed to.

      1. The Saints were clearly running down the clock when they got far enough ahead. I agree that they could have stepped on the gas and made it a blowout. Both 49ers touchdowns looked like blown assignments to me also. The pattern I see is that they sometimes surprise with a big play but consistently cannot drive down the field and score touchdowns — it’s either a Dawson field goal or a turnover. Only when they can drive down the field using up time and ending with a touchdown will I admit to signs of improvement.

    2. I have proposed that once the RB gains enough yards for a first down, he should stop struggling to gain more yardage and just fall to the ground.

      Of course, posters have derided me for that idea, saying it is the stupidest thing they have ever heard in their life.

      Hyde continued to struggle, and now he is injured. Davis continued to struggle, and was stripped of the ball. Hyde did get smarter, and ran out of bounds more, but he ran into the teeth of the defense way too many times. I do not blame Harris, because his forward momentum was stopped, but I also liked how he manned up and took the blame for his fumble.

      It was nice to see the WRs catch the ball, secure the ball, and just fall down past the sticks. It was a lot better than Vance, who continues to look to run before he fails to catch it. It was nice to get that TD, but his drops are killing drives. He also needs to learn to screen off the defender.

    3. Rick,
      I agree with your take.
      A fumble at a crucial moment can deflate the entire team and especially the defense who just got off the field.
      Turnovers are psychological negatives that hurt a team from the press box to the playing field. The team (offense/defense) was never the same after Davis’ fumble.

      Up until that fumble, I was actually thinking that we had a chance to get a win.

  11. O’Neil should have been fired 4 weeks ago, but Jed is content to lose, content to have a half empty stadium, and content to have more opponents fans than Niner fans by the end of the game.

    Jed is now hiding and cannot show his face.

    If Baalke does not poach a defensive player from a team’s practice squad, preferably from an upcoming opponent, and who is not an ACL player, I will accuse him for not trying to win.

    Chip has a -What, me worry? face, and cannot make adjustments. The biggest adjustment needed is to fire O’Neil, but he refuses to even consider it, because even though they have lost 7 games in a row, he sees no need to do it.

    This is shameful and humiliating. They have taken a once proud franchise, and drug it into the gutter, so now former rivals are feeling sorry for them. Jed has made the Niners into the laughingstock of the league, and they may not win another game.

  12. Please everyone, especially you Poe Parrot(aka Sebnoying), no more suggestions or advice. This is a bad football team from top to bottom. Nothing matters for the rest of the year. Just get yourself and your ideas to the offseason because there really is no silver lining till then!

    1. Prime, I suppose I could attack you ad hominem ad nauseum like you do to me, but that will not change anything. You will continue to be a pompous arrogant bloviator spewing drivel and screeds.

      I, on the other hand, have seen my ideas come to fruition. I dared Chip to run the pistol, and heard Tim Ryan mention that they were in a pistol formation. Kaep rolled out during that first half more than I have seen him in 3 years. It sure was satisfying to see Kaep roll out and throw a TD. It also was satisfying to post before the game that the Niners should invite the stacked box, then utilize DuJuan Harris with a pass to the flat, then see them execute that play for a TD.

      Chip himself felt my impact by declaring he does not debate blog posts. If he did not do that, he should not have acknowledged that there were blog posts at all, or deny looking at them. Another self inflicted wound, on his part.

      I have to laugh. Some posters think that we have no good ideas, and that the coaching staff has years of experience, so we should shut up because they are so superior to us plebes.
      However, when that coaching staff has a 7 game losing streak, they are failing miserably. I think Joan in accounting would do a better job than O’Neil. At least she would understand the concept of gap integrity.

      Prime, you may be bereft of ideas, and cannot formulate a cogent thought, but I will continue to post my thoughts and ideas. Of course, all I know is that Jed reads my posts, because he admitted that, he said he got my message loud and clear. It made my day when Tomsula said they should ACCENTUATE THEIR STRENGTHS in his initial presser.

      1. Yawn! I never read anything you reply back anyways that is more than 2 sentences. All of it is junk and parroting yourself! All you are Seb is waste of time, hence why I never read your long winded air fart suggestions.

        1. Prime, you do not read my posts, but attack them all the time, then claim you do not bother to read them because you say I parrot a lot.

          Sounds pretty obtuse.

            1. Kaep threw for 398 yards. On most teams, that would be enough to win, but the defense gave the game away.

              It just shows your prejudices and lack of football acumen to diss a QB who just threw for 400 yards.

              1. What about the 2nd half? Accuracy, leadership, decision making, how did he fair in those areas? All you moron Kap lovers look at the stats and say he played well. That’s why you have no football IQ!
                He still makes the same mistakes as a rookie would, now 5 years in!

  13. Paul Brown was a teacher in real life, Bill Walsh’s mentor, the Raiders are winning directly because of Reggie McKenzie and Brown /Walsh coaching tree–they get it Seb. The 49er QB under Young, Musgrave, another Walsh deciple know QB’s—Carr is going to lead the Raiders a SuperBowl this year Seb —done with Paul Brown/Bill Walsh coaches…So, do not compare Kap ever again to the aforementioned greats seb. Ever!

    the Browns posted a record of 114 wins, 20 losses, and four ties, including a 9–3 win–loss record in the playoffs. While most of Graham’s statistical records have been surpassed in the modern era, he still holds the NFL record for career average yards gained per pass attempt, with 8.98. He also holds the record for the highest career winning percentage for an NFL starting quarterback, at 0.814. Long-time New York Yankees owner George Steinbrenner, a friend of Graham’s, once called him “as great of a quarterback as there ever was.”[

    Bill Walsh would not hesitate, who learned under Coach Brown–A real teacher in life

    Graham grew up in Waukegan, Illinois, the son of music teachers.

    Graham was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1965. Having won seven championships in 10

  14. TomD

    November 7, 2016 at 8:32 am


    November 7, 2016 at 12:58 am

    That Raider QB has a monster O line that they spent a lot of Cap money on to attract FAs, and He has Amari Cooper, who was a first round pick

    Seb, your crazy is showing. The announcers stated that carr’s throwing motion has been modeled after Farve, Brady, and Rogers, slowed replays of each time Carr used their motions in a winning effort. Kap has problems simply maintianig his own

    1. Might as well throw Mike Homgren’s name into the teacher by trade list above. He mentored Farve, and was hired by Bill Walsh as his 49er asst. OC/QB coach during the glory years.

  15. I’m also the son of a teacher, Seb.

    The day the NFL let Paul Brown, a real life teacher by trade, loose on the football field was the day the NFL Changed (than the Gip)

    Bill Walsh was also a teacher in real life. They get it Seb. You and the York’s don’t!

    1. *Using a slow computer combined with the PD’s websited crashing mid typing, so I can not proof read my posts—apologies.

  16. MW,

    Since you bore us with your poetic structure w/o pleasing us with actual poetry, I suggest a JC night course in poetry anthologies.

    Start with dactyl hexameter. Thx in advance.

  17. No way Kelly turns down 10 million from Oregon.

    He’s being honest saying he’s staying with the 49ers, that is, until Oregon offers the 10 mil and he asks Jed to match. End of story.

  18. Chip is under contract next year. Oregon can offer him $ 100 million, but unless Jed lets him out of his contract Chip is not going anywhere.

    Jed is not going to fire Chip Kelly after one year. That will mean four head coaches in years. Not gonna happen. Baalke will be fired and Gamble will be the General Manager.

    I am old enough to remember when people wanted to fire Bill Walsh after he had just two wins his first season and had an 8 game losing streak his second year. He won the super bowl his third year.

    I am still a believer in Chip. We just need to get rid of Baalke and get a competent GM in place.

    1. Jed won’t fire Chip, but he would be stupid to keep him if he wants out. If he wants out, he is essentially realizing he can’t succeed in the NFL with his system. Then it won’t cost Jed anything to tear up the contract.

      It all won’t matter though, as long as the Yorks are in charge. Jed hired this guy to be HC:

  19. And most contributors on this board thought the Singletary hiring was a good idea at the time. I was livid! Most were also thrilled with Kaepernick’s new contract a couple years ago. I was livid! And then most thought Chip was a good hire. I wasn’t so angry anymore; I was already halfway out the door.

    I’m thinking if Jed can last anywhere, he’ll last where fans can’t discern a bad decision from a good one.

    That said, there is a good decision 49er fans can make today. Start following the Raiders, even if it takes you to Vegas. Bad football isn’t worth making your eyes bleed for.

  20. The majority of the time the big runs on our the linebackers. Backs are not faking hitting a hole popping it out to another hole knowing that the linebackers would over committ. Happening quite a bit.

  21. Would it be crazy to bring back Tomsula as D line coach? Sure seems like we could use the help. Put the ego aside. We know he’s good at that.

    1. Tomsula would only come back if Baalke is no longer the GM.

      Fire Baalke, promote Gamble, then Jed should let Tomsula deliver a swift reprimand to his rear end in front of the whole team.

      Then Tomsula should become the DC.

        1. Prime, the Niners need defensive help. O’Neil should have been fired 4 weeks ago.

          It is problematic to think Tomsula would want to come back under any circumstance, and certainly not as only a D line coach.

          Prime,this is another example of your lack of common sense, much less football knowledge.

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