SAN FRANCISCO — This is the live blog for the Niners week 8 home game against the Cleveland Browns. I will update this frequently from the Candlestick Park press box.
11:52 The 49ers’ inactive players are Scott Tolzien, Brett Swain, Tramaine Brock, Moran Norris, Daniel Kilgore, Mike Person and Ian Williams.
So, Braylon Edwards is active for the game, however I was just on the field and I did not see him warming up. I didn’t see him on the field at all, actually.
The Browns’ inactives are RB Peyton Hillis, QB Thaddeus Lewis, WR Mohamed Massaquoi, DB Ray Ventrone, OL Steve Vallos, OL Oneil Cousins and DL Auston English.
12:07 Although Braylon Edwards is active for this game, he will not start. Michael Crabtree and Ted Ginn Jr. will start at wide receiver instead.
12:08 A suited-up Edwards just ran from the locker room to the 49ers sideline, and now he’s riding a stationary bike.
12:50 Braylon Edwards and Michael Crabtree were the wide receivers in the 49ers pregame warmup.
1:13 Today’s 49ers captains are Frank Gore, Patrick Willis, and Andy Lee. They win the toss and defer the possession to the second half. The Niners will start the game defending the south end zone.
1:16 The Browns haven’t score a touchdown all year in the first or the third quarters.
1:17 On second and 9 Ahmad Brooks sacks Colt McCoy and forces the fumble. Isaac Sopoaga recovers at the Cleveland 20.
1:18 On first down the Niners line up with one tight end and two backs. Smith hands off to Gore who runs up the middle for a gain of five.
1:19 Jim Harbaugh calls the Niners first timeout. He must not have liked the way the 49ers were lined up.
1:20 Bruce Miller and Ted Ginn Jr. get the start on the Niners first drive. Delanie Walker and Braylon Edwards have not gotten on the field yet.
1:21 Next play, Smith throws a quick slant way behind Braylon Edwards. Fujita almost intercepted the pass.
1:22 Next play Greg Roman calls the same play but this time the pass is to Crabtree. Joe Haden got beat and got called for the pass interference. First and goal at the 9.
1:23 On first and goal Gore runs up the middle for a gain of five. And on second and goal Gore runs the middle for a touchdown despite the fact that the Browns had 12 defenders on the field. 7-0 Niners.
1:27 Josh Cribbs returns the kickoff 31 yards to the Cleveland 32 yard line.
1:28 On first down the Browns line up two tight ends and two backs. McCoy hands the ball off to Hardesty who runs up the middle for a gain of three.
1:28 Next play, McCoy scrambles to the right for a gain of seven yards. The Browns are in the no huddle, and on first down the try to run up the middle again, but, surprise, it doesn’t work. Gain of two. The Browns should cut that out.
1:29 Next play, McCoy checks down to Ogbonnaya, who gets smacked instantly by Bowman.
1:30 3rd and four, McCoy throws a short slant to Greg Little. Chris Culliver had the coverage, he jumped the route, and he almost picked off the pass.
1:31 Ginn Jr. lets the punt sail over his head and the Browns down it at the Niners one-half yard line. Tough bounce for the Niners.
1:33 On first down Bruce Miller jumps for the false start. The Niners move back half the distance to the goal, which puts them at the one-quarter yard line.
1:33 Next play, Gore up the middle for a gain of one.
1:35 Next play, Gore runs around the left end for a gain of 24 yards. Bruce Miller and Delanie Walker seemed to have the key blocks on that run.
1:35 Next play, Kendall Hunter runs up the middle and cuts back to the right to pick up 26 yards.
1:36 Next play, Alex Smith fakes a handoff and completes a pass to left tackle Joe Staley, who picks up 17 yards. First down at the Cleveland 31.
1:36 Next play, Alex Boone commits the false start.
1:38 On first down Alex Smith throws a pass to Braylon Edwards who makes a diving catch to pick up 8 yards.
1:38 On second down Frank Gore rushed up the middle for a gain of five yards.
1:39 Next play, 3rd and 2, Smith scrambles right on naked boot and picks up three yards after diving forward. First down Niners at the Cleveland 20.
1:40 On first down Gore runs up the middle for a gain of one. Mike Iupati is down on the field with a injury. Jim Harbaugh ran onto the field and now he’s kneeling next to his left guard.
1:41 Iupati walks off the field unassisted. It looks like he took a hit below the belt.
1:42 Next play, Smith checks down to Vernon Davis over the middle, who picks up eight yards. 3rd and 1.
1:43 Gore runs up the middle and gets tackled at the line of scrimmage. David Akers comes on the field and makes a 29-yard field goal. 10-0 Niners with 2:55 left in the first quarter.
1:47 The Browns start their drive from their 21. On first down Ogbonnaya runs up the middle for a gain of four. Bowman made the tackle in the hole.
1:48 Next play, McCoy completes a pass to Norwood for a fourteen yard gain and the Browns’ second first down of the game.
1:49 The Browns next two plays go next to nowhere, and on 3rd and 7 McCoy misses the open Greg Little crossing over the short middle. The Browns have to punt again. The Niners will take over at their own 17.
1:52 On first down Smith fakes a handoff to Gore and completes a pass in the right flat to Michael Crabtree. Gain of four.
1:56 On second down Smith pitches the ball to Gore who tries to run a sweep to the left, but loses three yards. That’s a great play, but it’s more effective when Hunter runs it.
1:56 On third and nine Alex Smith takes a five-step drop, steps up and completes a 19-yard pass to Vernon Davis over the middle.
1:57 Next play, Gore runs off right tackle to pick up 26 yards. First down at the Cleveland 37.
1:58 Alex Smith completes another pass over the middle to a tight end, this time to Justin Peelle. Another 19 yard gain. First down at the Cleveland 18.
1:59 Greg Roman’s getting confident in Smith now. On first down he has his quarterback line up in the shotgun with no backs in the backfield. Smith calmly surveys the field and completes a pass to Crabtree in the flat. Gain of 11.
2:00 Next play, Gore powers up the middle for seven-yard touchdown. Mike Iupati pulled and led the way effectively for Gore on the play. Gore’s left elbow might have been down right before the ball crossed the plain of the end zone, so the refs are reviewing the play.
2:02 The refs rule Gore’s elbow was down. The Niners have 2nd and goal at the Browns’ 1.
2:03 Next play, Gore runs up the middle and loses a yard. 3rd and goal from the 2.
2:04 Next play, Gore runs up the middle for a gain of one. The Niners will go for it on fourth down.
2:04 On fourth down Gore runs up the middle but picks up no yards. The Browns will take over from their one yard line. Harbaugh isn’t convinced Gore didn’t make it, so he’s challenging the ruling.
2:06 Vernon Davis appeared to injure his arm on his catch, but he’s walking around the sidelines without any visual discomfort.
2:07 The refs confirm the ruling that Gore didn’t score a touchdown.
2:08 On first down Owen Marecic dives up the middle for a gain of one yard.
2:09 McCoy bumps into Marecic and fumbles the ball but he picks it back up at the two.
2:09 Next play McCoy rolls out to his right and completes a nice pass downfield to his tight end Watson for a gain of 16. That’s first down No. 3.
2:10 The Browns get called for a false start. 2nd and 14 for them at their 15 yard line.
2:12 Next play, Goldson and Whitner force a fumble from Ogbonnaya but the Browns recover.
2:12 Next play, McCoy throws down the field incomplete to Little, plus the Browns get called for a holding penalty, so they’ll have to punt.
2:13 Ray McDonald was injured on that play, but he walks off the field under his own power.
2:14 Ricky Jean Francois played at NT in place of Sopoaga on that sequence. Sopoaga played at FB in the redzone the series before but he missed blocks on every down.
2:15 After the Browns punt, the Niners take over at their 36.
2:16 Ray McDonald seriously injured his right knee in college at the University of Florida, but trainers seem to be working on his left leg.
2:17 On first down Alex Smith fakes a handoff to Hunter, rolls right and overthrows Crabtree who was open and streaking deep.
2:18 Next play, Gore takes a draw through a wide open hole on the left side of the line and picks up 14 yards.
2:19 On first down Gore runs up the middle for a gain of five yards.
2:20 Next play, Smith fakes a pitch to the left and completes a quick slant to Edwards for a gain of nine.
2:21 Next play, Hunter takes a sweep around the right side for a gain of four yards. Gore wouldn’t have had enough speed to gain four on that play.
2:21 Ray McDonald pulled his hamstring and his return is questionable.
2:22 Smith tries to throw deep to Crabtree again, this time down the left sideline, but he overthrows his No. 1 wideout just like last time.
2:23 Next play, Smith completes a quick slant to Edwards for a gain of 12 and a first down.
2:23 On 1st and 10 from the 20, Gore runs up the middle for a gain of three.
Two Minute Warning
2:26 The Browns starting running back Montario Hardesty has a calf injury and the Browns list his return as probable.
2:27 On 2nd and 7, Gore runs up the middle for a gain of 6. 3rd and 2 from the Cleveland 11.
2:28 Next play, Smith runs a designed bootleg around the left side with Joe Staley leading the way. Smith picks up 9 yard. First and goal from the two.
2:29 On first down Gore runs up the middle for no gain. It’s about time the Niners try a pass at the goal line, which probably means they’ll keep running it.
2:30 Scratch that. They do pass the ball. Smith completes a touchdown pass to Crabtree in the right flat. That’s Crabtree’s first TD catch of the season. 17-0 Niners with 1:31 left to go in the first half. That was a 12-play, 64 yard, 4 minutes and 21 second drive.
2:33 Cribbs takes the kickoff out from midway in the endzone. Blake Constanzo tackles him at the 17.
2:34 On first down McCoy completes a 7-yard pass to Ogbonnaya.
2:34 Next play McCoy throws to an open Little, who gets blasted by Goldson. The refs call a 15 yard unnecessary roughness penalty. It looked like Goldson hit Little right in the head. Goldson will probably get a fine for that hit.
2:36 On 3rd and 2 McCoy completes a pass in the flat to Norwoord for a first down. 1st and 10 at the Niners 49.
2:39 The Browns are driving. McCoy completes a pass to Norwood. Ball at the 45 with 8 second left.
2:40 Next play, McCoy completes another pass, this one to Cribbs who gets out of bounds with 4 seconds left on the clock. Gain of eleven. Dawson comes on the field to attempt a 52 yard field goal. He makes it. 17-3 Niners at the end of the first half.
2:55 Ginn Jr. returns the kickoff to the SF 9. He tried to bounce the run outside to the left and that did not work.
2:55 On first down Alex Smith fakes a handoff and completes a pass to a wide open Braylon Edwards standing on the right sideline. Unfortunately for the Niners his left foot was physically on the sideline, so the completion doesn’t count.
2:56 Next play, Gore runs up the middle for a gain of six. 3rd and four.
2:57 Next play, Smith throws a pass right on Crabtree’s hands over the middle, but Crabtree drops it. Lee punts the ball to Cribbs, who gets tackled at the Cleveland 36. The Browns get called for a five-yard penalty and they elect to make the Niners rekick. The penalty was for an illegal man downfield.
2:59 Frank Gore has tied Roger Craig for the second-most 49ers rushing yards of all time.
3:00 Lee punts to Cribbs again, and this time Cribbs returns the ball 17 yards to the SF 49.
3:02 On first down Ogbonnaya gets the handoff and breaks a Haralson tackle to pick up seven yards.
3:03 On second down Ogbonnaya runs up the middle for a gain of one yard. Third and two.
3:03 The Browns line up WR Greg Little at tail back. After the snap he runs out the flat and McCoy completes a pass to him. Willis hits him immediately for a loss of eight. The Browns beat writers are disgusted. Cleveland punts, and Ginn Jr. calls a fair catch at the SF nine.
3:07 On first down Gore gets planted at the line of scrimmage by Sheard. No gain.
3:07 Next play, Smith completes a bubble screen to Vernon Davis. Gain of 1.
3:09 On third and long, Smith completes a deep pass to Crabtree down the left sideline for a gain of 41. Crabtree beat Sheldon Brown badly. He caught the ball, stepped out of bounds and then fumbled it. The Niners start their next set of downs at the Cleveland 44.
3:11 Bruce Miller has a thumb injury and his return is questionable.
3:12 On second and long, Smith takes a seven-step drop and gets hit on his last step. He fumbles the ball but picks it up. He loses three yards. Third and 11.
3:13 Smith completes a bubble screen to Crabtree but he goes nowhere. Loss of four.
3:14 Lee punts to Cribbs, who calls for a fair catch at the Cleveland 14. 7:29 to go in the third quarter.
3:17 On first down Ogbonnaya runs up the middle for a gain of six. Jean Francois makes the tackle.
3:17 On second down Ahmad Brooks beats Ogbonnaya and sacks McCoy for a loss of six.
3:18 Next play McCoy completes a pass to Alex Smith. Rogers has him dead to rights in the flat and he goes low to tackle him, but Smith hurdles him and picks up 20 yards.
3:19 Next play McCoy completes a deep pass to Watson for a gain of 29. First and 10 at the SF 37.
3:20 The Browns are using the no huddle offense and they’re having success with it.
3:22 McCoy throws deep to Little in the endzone, but he’s in double coverage and Goldson picks the ball off. Niners ball at their 20.
3:23 Bruce Miller is back in the game, and on first down Smith throws a ball to him in the left flat. Miller lets the pass bounce off his hands.
3:24 Next play, Smith pitches the ball to Hunter who tries to run a sweep around the left side, but he loses four yards. The Browns are covering that run play well today.
3:24 On third and 14 the Browns bring a blitz, so Smith fires a quick pass to Edwards on a slant, but Edwards drops the pass. The Browns beat writers are not surprised.
3:25 Lee punts to Cribbs, who returns the ball to the Cleveland 42. 3:19 left in the third quarter.
3:26 On first down McCoy completes a pass to Norwood for a gain of six. McCoy is in a rhythm as long as he doesn’t throw far downfield.
3:27 Next play, McCoy tries a slant to Little on the other side of the formation, but Willis slams him and the pass drops incomplete.
3:28 On third and four, McCoy scrambles for five yards and a first down.
3:28 The Browns stay with their no huddle offense and hand the ball off to Ogbonnaya, who picks up four yards.
3:29 Next play, Ogbonnaya runs off right tackle for a gain of four. Third and two.
3:30 Brooks and Whitner get penetration and force McCoy to throw an errant pass. The Browns punt and Ginn Jr. calls for a fair catch at the SF 11.
3:31 On first down Gore tries to run off right tackle but he loses a yard.
3:34 On second and 11 Smith lines up in the shotgun next to Gore. He fakes a handoff and runs to the right on a designed naked bootleg, and picks up 9.
3:35 Next play, third and short, Smith throws deep to Crabtree again and overthrows him again. Curious play calling by Greg Roman in this second half. Lee punts, and Cribbs returns the ball to the Cleveland 34. The Browns were called for a holding penalty on the play, so they’ll start their drive from their 8.
3:39 On first down Ogbonnaya runs up the middle for four yards. He’s had a good game.
3:39 Next play, McCoy completes a pass to Evan Moore crossing over the middle for a gain of five.
3:42 On third and long Aldon Smith sacks McCoy. That’s Smith’s 6.5th sack of the season. The Browns punt and Ginn Jr. returns it to the Cleveland 48.
3:46 On second and six, Ginn Jr. takes a reverse for a loss of eight yards. Another bad offensive play call for Roman. Lee punts. Cleveland ball at their 20 with 8:41 left to play in the fourth quarter. Niners lead 17-3.
3:50 On first down McCoy scrambles for 9 yards. Next play he scrambles for four yards and first down. Next play McCoy starts to scramble again but decides to throw to Ogbonnaya, who drops the pass.
3:52 McCoy completes a nine-yard pass to Little. The Browns are driving.
3:52 On fourth and one McCoy sneaks the ball for a yard and a first down.
3:54 Next play, McCoy completes a pass to Moor over the middle for a gain of 12.
3:54 Next play Cribbs beats Tarell Brown down the right sideline and McCoy hits him in stride for a 45-yard TD. The refs are reviewing the play, but it doesn’t look like Cribbs ever stepped out of bounds.
3:58 The refs confirm the TD call. 17-10 Niners with 6:17 left to play in the fourth quarter.
3:59 Ginn Jr. returns the kickoff to the SF 24.
4:00 On first down Gore runs off left tackle for no gain.
4:01 On second down Gore takes a draw handoff and picks up six yards. Third and three.
4:01 On third and short, Gore takes a run inside for just a couple yards, but a Browns defender grabbed his face mask on the way down. 15 yard penalty. First and ten for the Niners at their 48.
4:02 On first down Smith completes a short slant to Edwards on the left side for a gain of 13.
4:03 Next play, Gore runs up the middle for a gain of six. The Niners seem to be wrapping this game up, finally.
4:03 Next play, Gore runs up the middle for one yard and then the Browns call timeout, their second of the half. The Niners have third down and three yards to go from the Cleveland 32 with 3:11 left to play in the fourth quarter.
4:05 Next play Alex Smith fakes a handoff to Gore, then rolls back to the left and hits a wide open Isaac Sopoaga who picks up 18 yards after the catch.
4:06 Next play Gore runs up the middle for four yards. The Browns call their last timeout. There are three minutes left in regulation.
4:07 In a no-wide-receiver formation, Gore runs up the middle for a gain of one yard. Third and five from the Browns 10. The Niners call their first timeout of the half with 2:14 left.
4:10 Next play Smith scrambles for one yard. Fourth and four from the Browns 10.
Two Minute Warning
4:13 Andy Lee makes a 26 yard field goal. 20-10 Niners with 1:56 left in the fourth quarter. I’m going to run down to the field. I’ll be back at you shortly.