49ers 10, Rams 13: Grades

SANTA CLARA — The 49ers just gave away a game to the Rams, a dreadful team that was trying its best to lose. Here are the 49ers’ grades.

KAEPERNICK: D+. Was that him? Didn’t look like it. Whoever was wearing the red No.7 jersey looked timid, tentative, not explosive at all. Averaged just 7.18 yards per pass and 2.8 yards per carry, converted 3-of-12 third down and scored no touchdowns in two trips to the red zone. Also fumbled three times and the Rams’ recovered two of them, including the last play of the game when the guy wearing the red No.7 jersey fumbled a quarterback sneak at the goal line. He also threw two passes to Rams defenders and they dropped and both of them. The 49ers should dump this imposter.

RUNNING BACKS: D+. Frank Gore was sluggish for the third game in a row. Carlos Hyde ran well but carried the ball only twice.

WIDE RECEIVERS: D+. Michael Crabtree dropped at least three passes. What happened to him? He’s just bad. Jim Harbaugh should bench him and replace him with Stevie Johnson. Johnson has been hot all season and played well again today, but Greg Roman forgot about him until the fourth quarter. Johnson caught just three passes. Roman also caught forgot about Brandon Lloyd, another hot receiver. He caught only one pass before he left the game in the second half with a hamstring injury.

TIGHT ENDS: F. Vernon Davis caught two passes for 19 yards. I can’t remember the last time Kaepernick threw a deep pass to Davis. What’s the point of having Davis if you don’t throw him at least one deep pass a game?

OFFENSIVE LINE: F. Gave up 8 sacks. Committed five penalties. Created very little running room against one of the worst run defenses in football. Joe Staley gave up three sacks. He has given up 7 sacks already this season. He used to be a top-flight left tackle, but he has regressed.

DEFENSIVE LINE: A. Shut down Tre Mason, a good, young running back. Held him to just 3.4 yards per carry.

LINEBACKERS: B+. Sacked Austin Davis only once. Ahmad Brooks continued his streak of doing nothing. Aaron Lynch is by far the 49ers’ best pass rusher. Chris Borland filled in well for Patrick Willis, making 18 tackles total.

DEFENSIVE BACKS: A. Picked off Austin Davis twice, and he attempted only 24 passes. The Niners’ defensive backs simply were better than the Rams’ wide receivers. Perrish Cox and Antoine Bethea looked like All Pros.

SPECIAL TEAMS: D-. Andy Lee punted the ball just 23 yards from his end zone and set up the Rams’ go-ahead field goal in the fourth quarter. Phil Dawson missed a 55-yarder short and he struggled to kick the ball into the end zone on kickoffs for the first time as a Niner. Is he hurt? Bruce Ellington returned punts and kicks well but was flagged 15-yards for flipping a ball to a Rams’ player in the fourth quarter.

COACHES: F+. Give Vic Fangio credit. He coached well enough. But Jim Harbaugh and Greg Roman coached like they still were on their Bye week. What were they thinking? Where was Brandon Lloyd in the first half before he injured his hamstring? Has he not been the 49ers’ best deep threat this season? Did he not scorch the Rams for an 80-yard TD catch three weeks ago? And where was Stevie Johnson? He was hot prior to the Bye week, a virtual unknown today. Other than watching him go in motion across the formation, I would not have known he was in the game before the fourth quarter. Why would Roman not have more plays designed to go to Johnson based on how well he played the past few weeks? What did Harbaugh and Roman do during the Bye week? Clearly they did not properly evaluate who their hottest players were.


This article has 152 Comments

    1. When does Giants’ spring training start? I’ve given up on these 49ers, the most
      unlikeable bunch in sports.

    2. Greg Roman is similar to weathermen, they are wrong 98 percent of the time and they still keep there jobs,

  1. How can you give Kap a D? He was awful. He is solely responsible for the loss. Quit blaming coaches. Players play the game. It’s easy to second quess the coaches. The O line was also bad but we already knew that. Kap was at fault on half of those sacks. With even average QB play we would have won.

      1. They had the same number of penalties as the Rams for half the yardage. Kap fumbled threw interceptions, made bad throws, didn’t bother with progressions, etc etc.

        1. Progressions with 0.02 seconds in the pocket. Sorry buddy but with the amount of time there’s no way he could have progressed past his first read.

          1. Totally. add that to the fact that this is only kaps 4th year in the same offense. I mean hes still learning. He will get there.

    1. Yes, Kap was not at his best but his Oline had a lot to do with it.
      I could see him having the option of throwing the ball out of bounds if one defensive player is coming in on him, but it’s much harder to get the ball off when you are surrounded by defenders coming at all directions.

      Remember that one of his fumbles came when he was blindsided by a defender he never saw or expected him to be blocked.

      This loss was worse than the blowout loss to the Broncos because it’s a game that they should have won.

  2. I’ve said this before and I’ll say it again; the loss of Tim Drevno doomed the offensive line. The NFL passed Solari by 7 years ago. Worst OL coach in football along with our worst WR coach in football. I predicted Harbaugh would be gone at the end of the season after week two – this team has been routinely losing games it should win handedly. Top to bottom the offense has regressed despite having a deeper roster. That tells me the wrong people are in charge. Sure years ago when Harbaugh brought a new tweak to running in the NFL, there was a lot of success. However like all things you have to evolve. Now that the league has caught up, Roman and Harbaugh have no answer. Next coach up …..

    1. Ninergm. Are you kidding. Did you watch the game? Kap was terrible. The line was bad because of injuries and a holdout. There is no one else to play. How is this the coaches fault?

      1. The 49ers have all of their projected starters on the OL except Kilgore, and his job was supposed to be a competition with Martin before Martin got injured anyway. And you’re really using the holdout excuse for Boone after 8 WEEKS of action? The OL is terrible because they’re playing terrible. No excuses.

      2. Because its not just about one game, one play, one series, one third down conversion …. This line still can’t block when Kap plays well. Kap can’t be expected the carry the entire offense every week without fail. I so sick and tired of people constantly making excuses for all of the 1st round draft picks and former probowlers who after 8 weeks as a UNIT still can’t run or pass block. That’s call a total fail and TOTAL team fails fall on the head at minimum the position coach and ultimately on the head of the offense (OC). Anyone and I mean anyone who continues to make excuses for one of the deepest offensive roster in the NFL can’t be taken seriously. They should score 21 points a game by accident.

        1. Agreed.
          This offensive line has been pathetic and the offense as a whole has under performed for some time now. I would argue that the entire offensive staff needs to go.

  3. What kind of offensive coordinator would call a QB sneak behind a rookie center making his first NFL start? Please fire Roman already.

      1. He fumbled the snap so it didn’t work. You can’t put this loss on Kap, he drove them down the field and made some plays at the end of the game. Clearly Martin and CK weren’t put in the best situation to succeed and that is on the O coordinator not the QB.

        1. Huh? He fumbled the ball so that is the coaches fault. He got into the end zone so the play did work. The ball just didn’t make it.

          1. No
            GRo didnt give the ball to frank gore one of the better backs at falling forward and getting a yard running behind the “Strength” of this team the supposedly dominant run blocking line, a single time inside the 5 yard line with the game on the line. Thats where Gro failed. or if not gore how about a naked bootleg where CK tries to beat the linebacker to the pilon? 2 rollouts and a sneak? weak sauce

            1. youre forgetting the part where it would have been a game winning play had the ball not been dropped.

      2. How can you say the sneak worked when the rookie center stood up in front of Kap instead of staying low. Kap running into him is what caused the first fumble, Kap then recovered, crossed the goal line before the second fumble so it should have been a TD with no help from the o-line. Someone said one of the o-linemen cussed the second fumble by hitting him front behind! Worst o-line performance I’ve ever seen and I’ve seen almost every 9er game since 1978.

  4. Our offense is so disjointed. there is zero continuity. cant believe we dont throw up 30+ every game.
    why not hand off to gore or hyde at goal line?
    sloppy clock mgmt all game.
    another failed end of the game redzone pass from kap to crab.
    is vance macdonald still on the team?
    Baalke’s Fups are coming home to roost.
    unfortunately I dont believe ROman goes unless harbs does. I think JH thinks roman is doing a fine job.
    frustrating. the good news is 8-8 equals about a #12 draft pick. The bad news is baalke will probably F that up too.

  5. The problem isn’t Kap, the problem is tht we don’t have any elite athletes/players other than Kap and VD. this isnt college (or the Green Bay game for tht matter) so Kap cant take completely take over games and VD is easily defensible especially against solid defenses. Thats the reason teams can stack the box and get away with it. D coordinators dont respect our talent on the outside because we dont have anyone who can threaten the defense with the potential to score at any moment from anywhere. Consequently we have to put together 15 play drives just to score any type of points. Tht is extremely hard to do consistently. And on top of tht whn we get in the red zone we dont have any legit red zone targets. Vernon isnt a good route runner, crabs is average height and slow, so is boldin. Roman has to be more creative and less stubborn(especially when it comes to running out of the i formation)!!!!

    1. No team has elite players at every position. Furthermore, a team DEVELOPS elite players and player don’t stay ELITE forever. There are windows.

    1. Jack ..
      when they were reviewing that play ..
      the instant replay CLEARLY showed the ball
      breaking the plane of the goal line ..

      When they determined it WAS (indeed) a catch ..
      why didn’t they see the ball across the goal line, too ?

      With the proper call .. the QB sneak doesn’t happen and

      Grant’s grades might be different

        1. Jack…
          EXACTLY !!! …

          The headlines tomorrow should read:

          “Huge robbery at Levis Stadium !”

          (btw … the .. at the end of your
          link …serves up a “page not found”)

          1. Addendum to Jack …

            Notice Crabtree’s knee on the ground ..
            (when the ball crossed the plane)
            Proper call SHOULDA been ..

        2. Jack:

          I think this GIF explains it.


          When Crabtree hit the ground, the ball moved.* Therefore, it wasn’t yet a catch and didn’t become a catch until Crabtree secured it, which didn’t happen until the ball was on the wrong side of the goal line. Maybe the better way to phrase it is to say the replay doesn’t show incontrovertibly that Crabtree secured possession while the ball was across the goal line, which is what was needed to overturn the call on the field.

          *One can argue that the ball also touched the ground and the pass therefore was incomplete, but that’s not what Boger/Blandino concluded, so let’s assume it didn’t touch the ground.

  6. 49ERS READ OUR POSTS AND FIRE GREG ROMAN and BAALKE NOW…….What are you waiting for? Our season is over with no play off appearance hope.
    KAEPERROR SUCKS as passer; he shouldn’t be playing QB position. He is too mechanical and have no feel for passing balls to his WRs. Where was our running game?

  7. We have to get rid of Roman. I’ll start there. If that means Harbaugh is gone, so be it. I love Harbaugh, the passion he brings, but if he’s willing to die with Roman – let him go. Since taking over this offense Roman has rarely ever gotten into a rhythm. He doesn’t call plays to set up other plays. He’s calling offensive plays, defensively. He’s letting the defense dictate his plays calls instead of having the defense on their heels and dictating the game to them. We added more weapons, Roman still can’t call plays. Also, what’s the point of drafting Patton & Ellington, if there just going to be used in practice. 2 WR’s I said they should draft are now contributing to their teams, Kelvin Benjamin & Martavious Bryant. It ridiculous.

    Kaep I don’t know what to say. He’s a sitting duck right now. The kid is a mobile QB trying to sit in the pocket. He’s gotten better at that but his line is not helping him. It’s pretty bad. Then he gets rattled and ansi. The kid couldn’t run if he wanted to. The Rams were running free from all sides. Same thing that happened in the Broncos game. But good ole Roman, instead of calling quick hitting plays to counteract the rush, he continues to call plays that take long to develop. It makes no sense. On the last play, Kaep was more worried about getting in the endzone instead of securing the ball.

    Our offense is a complete disaster. Many will blame Kaep, that’s fine. But the issues we are having we’ve had for few season. We just won so it was brushed under a rug. I’m laying the blame squarely on Harbaugh/Roman, 1st. Then it’s all over the place. 8 sacks, Oline and Kaep. Nothing happens if the fat boys up front don’t do their job.

    Defense, let’s pray Fangio stays on this staff. Dude just gets the job done. Hats off Borland. I was hard on him during the Broncos game, 18 tackles means you’re all over the place. Maybe Borland needs to be beside Willis when he comes back. Our DB’s played well. It just sucks they ball their arse’s off and the offense is in disarray.

    The playoff light is flickering. We have to win every game and pray for help.

    1. I understand the players play and the coaches coach, but the same mistakes are being made. These are mistakes that have happened for years. At that point it goes beyond the players and to the coaches. The last 4yrs we have lost too many games inside the 5yd line. Once or twice okay. More than that I’m looking beyond the most obvious reason.

  8. KY,
    I’m very frustrated with the offense as well, but if the players are performing and executing at optimum level we probably are not in this position.
    I do feel that Roman sometimes just overthinks playcalling. The last play of the game today was a prime example.
    Why would you call a QB sneak to run behind a rookie Center who is playing his 1st game at such a critical time?

    Their Noseguard (Donald) was getting good penetration playing over center throughout the game so it just did not make sense to have Martin try to bowl him over for the QB sneak.
    But having said that, we did not deserve to win this game today because we simply looked sluggish and unprepared from top (coaching) to bottom (players).

    1. Sorry, that last play calling sequence wasnt the only example. Since Roman has been the offensive coordinator we have been near the bottom of the league in red zone efficiency, passing yrds, and delay of game penalties. To give you an idea… Jimmy Raye was more efficient in the red zone than Roman has been.

      Another example… on 3rd and 1 the offense comes out in a spread formation with no running back. We don’t even threaten with the run against against one of the worst run defenses in the NFL so the defense can just pin their ears back and rush the qb.

  9. One of the more frustrating losses in the Harbaugh era. Kap did play scared for much of the day but it’s hard to blame him when the OL puts up one of the more pitiful performances in pass protection i’ve seen. It’s also hard to blame him when he scored two game winning touchdowns that didn’t count at the end because the officiating was terrible. Roman was terrible as well, you can call plays to beat the blitz and you can call plays to protect an OL that can’t pass block and he didn’t do any of it. They threw one screen the whole game. Just pathetic, and of course even if the offense didn’t completely suck we would’ve won the game if Andy Lee didn’t decide to have his worst game in a 49er uniform on the same day, or if Dawson hits the field goal. No margin of error for this team now.

    1. More frustrating than the SB or last years NFC championship game? I am sensing a theme here…..

        1. just a simple question. trying to clarify. “One of” could be any number of losses. oh and trying thinking before you post… Andy Lee…you got to be kidding right?

          1. He gifted the Rams the 3 points that they won by? And he failed to pin them inside the 20 multiple times when 49ers drives stalled. He was bad

            1. did he fumble the ball going in for the game winning TD? And the fact that you refrerence multiple STALLED drives while blaming the punter for not pinning them in the 20… shows you’re not really thinking clearly.

  10. I was the first to suggest firing Roman. I was also the first to say fire Nolan and Singletary. The problem is usually it happens a year or two late.
    This team needs to make a change now! !! If not the season is gone and if so, this coaching staff might be off to greener pastures next year anyway.
    start Johnson over Crabtree, Hyde over gore and Ellington the number 3 WR.
    I have never been a fan of GRO’s play calling or halftime adjustments. The funky passes to Staley and Soapaga were fun but not good enough to sustain a real offense. I hate to be a pessimistic but the window for this current group of Veterans is almost shut.

  11. The good news for us 49er fans is that the playoffs start next week. It’s must win territory from here on out. The other good news is the reinforcements on defense should all be back by the time this thing is over.
    The bad news is this offense is leaking oil as it struggles to establish an identity. Run the ball and play action, or go 4/5 wide and open it up? The players looked confused, the QB and especially the offensive line. There is no continuity in their blocking assignments from series to series because the offense changes randomly. What is it? Pass plays that require blocking for 3-5 seconds or 7-10?
    Last thing, let’s not underestimate the value of an experienced starting centre. Marcus Martin was not ready to play today and face that front four. He was so overmatched from the line calls to holding his own.
    I don’t think firing Roman midseason works. It did for the Ravens. The answer is consistency. This revolving door of play calling from run heavy play action to 4/5 wide is unique, but it’s not working. Get back to the basics. Play for field position. Let the defense drive the bus and don’t turn it over.
    Let’s pass the torch a little to Stevie J, Hyde and Carrier. Crabtree was and is an average WR. I never liked his game, his attitude and lack of speed for all the hype. He has not improved as a football player since being a 49er. Time to make some hard decisions and sit the lack of production type guys.

  12. Question: Our defense has rookies and 2nd yr players playing all over the place. They are doing well. WHY ARE THE YOUNG GUYS NOT GETTING PLAYING TIME ON OFFENSE? To me, it’s coaching. Fangio knows what the heck to do. Harbaugh/Roman…… Fill that in yourself.

  13. We can all point all the fingers we want. Bottom line this is not a championship team. It starts and ends with the coaching.

    This is not a fluke. Losing control of players. Losing games with leads over teams we are supposed to beat. Forgetting about running. Uncharacterist penalties. It’s not our year. We need to start next year by rebuilding our offensive line to suit our style of offense. And we possibly might need to replace a coach or coaches.

    1. But not your idol Kaepernick? Who at one point would be the ticket to overcome all deficiencies on the offensive line, be able to stretch the field, challenge all areas of the field? Now it’s the coaches fault. The quarterback today played terrible. It all starts there. Let’s call it what for it is, the finger pointing starts there.

    1. “Now that thar’s funnny. I don’t care who you are, that thar’s funny.” – Larry the Cable Guy

  14. I’ve never criticized Roman before, but after this game I’m putting the overall offensive woes of this team squarely on his shoulder.

    I don’t attach much to speculation about offensive philosophy. An OC has to do gameplan whatever is needed to get the offense into a rhythm. This is where Roman has failed abysmally this season. It’s as if Roman’s offense can never get into a rhythm if the power running game cannot be executed for some reason. Because of flux in the O line, the latter has not gelled for adequate run blocking for the staple power runs.

    When pretty much the entire offense is playing poorly and without inspiration, my instincts say there is some major coaching issues. The offense has too much talent to generate stinkers like this. I’m beginning to get this feeling of deja vu from Jimmy Raye days. Today at some points Kap looked to me like Alex Smith from pre-Harbaugh days.

    1. It’s also bad when players Start questioning schemes. This offense has had no real Identity the whole season. I’m not so sure it should have a particular one since they should be able to run everything well in their third year together. The fact that they aren’t running anything well especially after a bye, is inexcusable.
      How many games have they come out flat or unable to make halftime adjustments. How many goal line situations will we half to hold are breath on? Admit one thing. This is not the offensive philosophy we thought we were getting. It’s somewhere between Jimmy Raye and Norv turner; the occasional flash with a few big (wow) plays followed by wtf calls……I have no confidence in the offensive philosophy of this team and neither do the players in that locker room……smh. Jed York, you have your stadium, make the call….fire Roman Now! !!

      1. “The fact that they aren’t running anything well especially after a bye, is inexcusable.”

        Harbaugh should consider giving the players two weeks off during the bye week. Last year we scored a whole 9 points against Carolina when they had two weeks to prepare (Kap was as bad or worse in that game also). Like some have said, too much thinking and scheming and not enough making plays. Based on the 9ers record with Harbaugh, maybe Jim should also consider letting the team run their own practices like the strike year! Of course, an optimist could say we improved by scoring one more point this year, and we’re on the right track.

      1. CK looked like the guy that without a lot of help, and near perfect defense and special teams effort, is a very average player.
        The biggest concern for me is the late game crumbling when the pressure is on. Every time he has a chance to win the game, he turns it over or makes a bad play.
        I ask all the CK lovers, how do you win championships when the face of your franchise turns into a deer in head lights when it’s crunch time?

  15. The 49ers should dump this impostor.
    Great idea, who should they replace him with. Please don’t say the “real” version.

  16. Perrish Cox and Antoine Bethea looked like All Pros.
    Against Austin Davis.

  17. I can’t help but feel like the wheels fell off of the season today. This team has no identity on offense. The O-line was awful. It was shocking to watch Staley and Davis today, they were so slow compared to the Rams defenders.
    It seems like the league has caught up to everything that Harbaugh and Roman are capable of. They are slow to react and seem to have hit a wall with regards to their NFL coaching experience. The swagger is gone from the staff and the lack of positive energy seems to be permeating the roster.
    I don’t see this team making the playoffs at this point. They would probably have to go 7-1 and there is no sign of that happening. The Harbaugh effect seems to have faded. You knew this marriage wouldn’t last that long, but it’s still surprising to see this team performing at its current level. This offseason seems destined to bring significant changes to the coaching staff and roster.

      1. Jack,
        Thanks, I hope all is well. Yeah, they have abandoned the run game big time. I thought Gore and Hyde would be a formidable rushing combo and they probably would be if given more opportunities.

        It’s alarming to watch Staley and Davis in pass protection. Staley seems to have lost his lateral quickness and DE’s simply run right past Davis.

        It seems like Harbaugh and Roman don’t have confidence in their schemes anymore and are trying to implement things that they simply aren’t that experienced with. I can see this team having a successful second half, but I don’t think anything short of a stellar stretch (and the Hawks or Cardinals falling apart) will result in a playoff appearance. It feels like the Harbaugh era is coming to a close, which is unfortunate.

  18. I dunno if it’s the muscles or the flashy smile but Kaepernick has won over the hearts and minds of many of you if you can watch a performance like today and think that those errors had anything to do with play calling.

    1. He was flustered the whole game. The constant pressure didn’t help either. His pillars on the o line aren’t there. Goodwin to Kilgore to Martin. A shadow of Staley, overrated Iupati, holdout Boone and hurt Davis. Too much to deal with and it starts from the top.
      Jed needs to resign Harbaugh now if he plans to keep him or fire Roman and put people on notice. This isn’t working and won’t.

      1. if so elite should be able to carry the team especially against bottom rung totally decimated by injury teams…he doesn’t even if the excuse is that the OL is sieve like.

        So why didn’t harbaugh go to cincinnati….and what about this brooks to cleveland rumor…

  19. What did harbaugh mean when he mentioned “habits” multiple times as something they need to do better?

      1. Ha, unless you meant in reference to our own season ending. Then yea, you’re right it was hyperbole.

      2. Oh I see, he might only be out a month. Thought a collar-bone would be more severe of an injury.

  20. 22/33 237 yards 1 TD and 0 int.
    And you want to blame the qb for this loss? Calling him an imposter? Yes he was. I’ve never seen a #7 under that much pressure before. Sacked that many times with zero ints? Please…. The fumble. Name a qb that wouldn’t have fumbled on that play.
    The other “fumble” it’s clear as day he crossed the line before he lost the ball. How does the ball get that far into the ENDZONE if he didn’t? The replay sure as heck doesn’t show the ball being rolled everywhere. That was a TD and once again they get screwed. The MC catch. He clearly catches it in the end zone comes back out and lands on the 1. Now we miss a safety call because our 12th defender Casper the ghost forced the rams player back into the end zone stopping his forward progress. It’s replayed and that’s the ruling? And yet the MC TD was different?

    NO NO NO….
    I’m blaming
    Coaches for this sloppy game.
    The O-line
    And the all star refs we were given today. 8-0 will have to happen and if they get lucky they might sneak into the playoffs at 11-5 at best. And what I saw today with the offensive line and lost and lazy receivers and tight ends… I’m not holding my breathe.

  21. I know the team should start playing better once some of our injured guys come back, but the problem is the guys that are returning are defensive guys and that side of the ball is playing ok for the most part. The OL has been simply horrendous all year, and until that gets cleaned up this team is no sure thing to beat anyone.

    1. Staley is the biggest disappointment for me in that group. He is supposed to be the one OL that we have that you can depend on.

    2. SFBob …

      Answer this if you can … ok ?

      Kaep does a sneak … the ball goes into the end zone .. right ?
      Once the ball crosses the plane … the play is over ..
      whatever happens afterward .. is moot …

      We saw these refs change this rule TWICE in successive plays ..

      Now … blame Kaep ..

      Scooter …

      How many of those 8 sacks went through the rookie center ?

          1. I did see it rolling around in the endzone. I think I also noticed it come it when kap went to kiss his bicep

            1. rolling around in the end zone … right .. now ..

              HOW did it GET in the end zone ?

              Quick hint for ya …

              Kaep put it there

              1. It rolled its way there from inside the one where kap initially fumbled it. So yes I agree technically kap put it there.

            2. You should put tape on your mouth just like your moniker has. Some of you guys are just a bunch of trolls and haters. Oh and your moniker is also wearing dark glasses just like blind people often do. Where is your white cane Troll?

  22. The defenses wasn’t perfect, but did its job. Borland played well, but the 49ers better figure out how to cover crossing TEs. It’s Jimmy Graham next week.

    Not happy with the play calling… the 3+ years of poor clock management… that it still takes Kaepernick takes forever to get the ball out.
    Especially not happy the vaunted O-line got handed its lunch… again!

    The 49ers are 4-4. To make the playoffs in any capacity, they can only lose 1-2 more games. This could get ugly.

    1. and while I’m having fun with negativity, what’s up with the Santa Clara crowds? They have to me shushed when the 49ers have the ball, and the cheering is tepid when the Rams had the ball.

        1. I suffer the lifelong shame of actually being at the famous “wine sippers” game.

          The previous game I attended was the 81 playoff game vs NYG. We camped at The Stick for three freezing nights, and were fanatically noisy on game day (next week, Dallas in the NFCCG).

          Then I got tix for that balmy Sept. game vs Atlanta. At the start I did my usual yelling, and actually got shushed by the yuppies in front. I was not cursing or engaging with other fans. Just cheering to make noise for the Fred Dean and the gang.

          The 49ers won, but the atmosphere was kind of blah. Gentrification had set in. After the game Randy gave the “wine sipper” quote.

          1. Brodie,
            Lmfao! I remember attending the game the week before Steve Young’s career came to an end. I believe it was against the Saints or the Titans, but the guy in front of me turned around and told me to keep it down. I “accidentally” spilled my beer on him moments later. “Sorry Sir, if I can’t cheer I have to jump around! Perhaps you would like option C?” There was no option C but you could tell he didn’t want to find out. His wool trousers were already in dire need of dry cleaning. Ahhh….to be 20 and inebriated.

      1. It’s a stadium filled with Silicon Valley douches that attend the games solely because it’s the newest thing to do. You knew that was going to happen, and it has. New stadiums are always ridiculously expensive. The Silicon Valley has so much discretionary income and so many bandwagon fans that it takes it to a whole new level. If the team has a couple of down years you will see plenty of empty seats, but they’ll still be paid for. I live in the East Bay and it’s amazing how many A’s “fans” seem to be running around in orange and black these days. Smh. My friend Eric and I used to take the bus(es) from Sunnyvale to Candlestick for Giants day games when we were 11/12. My dad would have killed me had he known, but it was cheap and fun. The stadium was also practically empty.

      2. They have you shushed when the niners have the ball? Did you really mean to type this?
        Normally you make a lot of noise when the Defense is on the field so that their offense cant hear the snap count or audible. Noise Always benefits the Defense.

    2. Today I saw Kaep yelling towards the sideline to get the play in. Anyone else see that.

    1. Simple, audible out of something that looks like jail house break type blitz. Your telling me Kaepernick does not have the intelligence to read the scheme and make adjustments? After the 4th sack, you’d think he would get it.

      1. No he does not have the intelligence to call an audible or read defenses. WE ALL KNOW THAT!!! But he has a strong arm

    2. Bay Area Fanatic,

      Look at how long he holds the ball, and how he steps up in the pocket instead of throwing the ball away.

      Count the number of Rams who blitz, and he didn’t throw it away. Look how he looks to run instead of immediately going to a check down.

      We saw Austin Davis, an undrafted rookie do it. And he had a horrible game.

      Look at the big long wind-up and that affects his delivery in the red zone. Look at how he kept trying to throw to Crabtree to win the game.

      But you’re right, it’s not Kaep’s fault. According to the one of the dudes on KNBR, the Rams had the ends playing wide, and forced him to step up in the pocket.

      They also blitzed alot the last game and got burned. This time they did their homework and figured out how to contain the rush lanes.

      I’m sure the Stat lovers will say he was 17/25 and threw for 246 yards and said he had a great game.

      1. Fan you nailed it but you will never hear Lameareafanatic admit it. Despite all the faults, the one that should worry fans, is the late game panic in his game!

          1. Yup. And then he fumbled the ball. If he had thrown a better pass to Crabs the play before, maybe we don’t need the sneak.

            I like how you stick up for your man though. Gotta give props for that kind of love. What kind of chocolate are you buying Kaep for Valentine’s Day?

            Oh yeah – the Rams pretty much gave him the field position with those defensive holding and pass interference penalties and we still got nada.

            I hate to be a broken record, but KAEP HAS NOT LED THE TEAM TO A 4TH QUARTER TD ALL YEAR.

            There is something seriously wrong with the identity of this team. If they want to get to the playoffs, they have to go back to smash mouth football. Who cares if Gore is only got 49 yards on 14 carries. Why did Hyde only get 2?

            Let’s accept Kaep is slow to read defenses, and not put the game plan on him anymore.

            1. But the one key part your missing Mexicali is he fumbled the ball. You know, turned it over, game over.
              Blame the play call all you want, the players have to execute. He has not done it in crunch time yet. Sense a pattern dip stick?

              1. Fan my guess is the organization wants the ball in CK’s hands to truly identify what he is. Is he the guy, the franchise? This is why I think the contract extension is put on hold with Harbaugh. He has already sold Jed that CK is the guy. Jed said, ok let’s see but we will put a little out clause in case you are wrong and if you are, your gone too at years end.

              2. I always felt that when the Niners switched from Alex to Kaep, Harbaugh or Baalke was going ALL IN with Kaep. if the Niners had won the Super Bowl with Smith, then you have to pay Smith and then what do you do with Kaep?

                Maybe Harbaugh isn’t the QB Whisperer. Frankly, it doesn’t matter. Kaep’s getting paid like a pro, he looked kinda raw and lost today.

                The O-Line is bad, but Brady’s line isn’t very good either. And lord knows that KC line is nothing to write home about, seems like Alex is doing okay dining and dunking his way to a winning record!

              3. KC line is so-so. They have no WRs, but they have an offensive identity, and the QB is efficient if not dazzling.

      2. I was having this very discussion about an hour ago. Is it the O-Line, or is it Kaepernick’s slowness getting rid of the ball.

        Its both. Pass protection was awful… and Colin takes way too long to get rid of the ball under pressure.

        The difference was stark during the Denver game Lynch blew by the OT all night, but Manning got rid of the ball so quickly it didn’t matter.

        – Had Denver had Colin under center, Lynch would have gotten 2-3 sacks and multiple QB hits.

        – If the 49ers had Manning under center, there would have been far fewer sacks.

        What I can’t see from the replays is how open (or were WRs even running the right routes) when the Rams blitzed.

        1. Bad routes…..too long to help kap. He needs the west coast offense not this offense because he’s not Andrew luck.

    3. Bay Area Fanatic,

      Since you asked about these sacks:

      1st Sack — Kaep under center, does a soft play fake to Gore, two D-Line men break through. 4 Man Rush

      2nd Sack – Kaep in shotgun, Gore in back field. Rams blitz 5. Hot read to Boldin in the flat, and Johnson cutting across the middle who had a lineman drop back in coverage. Crabs also open on a hitch if Kaeo had read blitz.

      3rd sack — Shotgun. Gore in the backfield. 4 Man rush. 3 step drop. Davis open on the left. Boldin too. But Kaep doesn’t anticipate throws. This one would have been a hard one but he could have thrown it at the feet of someone, like Smith used to do!

      4th Sack — Shotgun, Gore in backfield. Rams show blitz and brink 6. Good time to audible. Kaep takes a 5 step drop, steps up in the pocket tries to run by going up into the pocket. He’s running, not looking to pass and then gets sacked.

      5th Sack — Shotgun, Empty set. Rams bliz off the edge. 3 step drop, pump fakes, rolls right, and then is stripped. DBs playing back, and watching Kaep’s eyes. They were ready to jump routes again.

      6th sack – Shotgun, 4 man rush, Gore sneaks out of the backfield. Crabs ran a hitch. Kaep sense pressure, steps up and tries to run. He had room in the pocket to pass to his buddy Crabtree but instead runs into a sack. This was 2nd and 10 and now is 3rd and 13.

      7th Sack — Kaep under center, Pressure on the edge. Had Hyde and Miller out of the backfield for check downs, tried to elude pressure up the middle and got caught.

      8th Sack — Kaep under center, near the goal line. Rams put 10 in the box. 10! It’s 2nd and 11, No one bites on the play action. It’s a 7 step drop, pressure on the edge. They rush 4. Kaep steps up to get out of the end zone and is sack. There was no safety valve.

      Some sacks are on the O-Line, some sacks are Kaep sensing pressure and tried to make a play, and some sacks are on Kaep for not taking the check-down. We saw this play out during the Super Bowl, remember?

    4. Throw the ball away! Step up and take off as soon as you see your crappy o line breaking down.
      All that being said, you DONT fumble a QB sneak to win the game Bay. Kap is NOT COMMITTED to his craft. Period! !!! He’s Romo with muscles!

  23. The Roman saga continues. Today’s awful play calling reflects what has hampered this team for the past 2-3 years. It is time for him to go, and for the coach to man-up and get his players ready to play better than they did today. They should have stomped all over the Rams. They are indisciplined, and unorganized…someone in the coaching stuff should be held accountable for the cumulative disintegration of this team. They are awful…

  24. Hey jackhammer what are niners qb comparisons on qb sneaks fumble ratio from the 1 to win the game? How does kap compare with that one?

    1. sanfranbob: How many concepts are you capable of focusing in in one day. It seems you are still obsessed with the psudo fumble in the end zone that most people ( except the refs ) recognized was a TD. I have noticed that if you are not a troll who is just wanting to yank peoples chains then you must be very simple minded because you repeat the same things over and over or parrot and approve some other trolls posts.You seem to take great glee and joy in the failure of this team if it only provides you with distorted ammunition to troll Kaep.

  25. One last thing. ……did you guys see Tomsula giving the oline a pep talk towards the end of the game? He’s not even their position coach. ……bad schematics anyone? ?? Not a good sign if you ask me.

  26. On KNBR after the game with Ted Robinson, one of the two hosts pointed out that the QB sneak should have been called with Kap leaping over the O line (as I recall Stafford doing earlier this season). Kap is tall and cameras would have caught the ball breaking the plane and it would not have mattered if there was a fumble after that. Sneaking underneath was a bad idea because it is impossible for referees to see what the hell is going on in the pile, let alone to get conclusive visual evidence to overturn. They have to go by their approximate perception and whoever comes up with the ball from the pile.

    I really want one of the beat writers to ask whether the call for the underneath QB sneak came from Harbaugh/Roman or if it was Kap’s decision. The dumbs%*t questions that these reporters ask coaches and players after a game make me want to thrown up.

    1. It may have had something to do with the fact that he fumbled the snap. Hard to leap if you’re dropping the ball

      1. If you watch the play it becomes clear that he never had the ball to fumble it. It never made it into his hands. He took it off Martins rear end. It was not a clean exchange. Why is up to conjecture. It was not the first ackward exchange they had in the game either. Not unusual with a new center. Bad timing????? Who knows.As other posters have mentioned in retrospect it was probably not a good call for a QB sneek with a new or rookie center under these conditions. Although with a regular center its the right call. The Niner’s have not had much luck running against a stacked box on short yardage because the hand off gives the defense more time to react.

    2. Maybe he was going to go over the top, before the ball was stuck on our centers leg. I’m shocked he had the skill to grab the ball after the botch. It was a TD. But playing like that you’re playing with fire. They got burned today.

  27. Lol 77, prime and the other idiot.
    ALL Ck’s fault. Nothing to do with the O-line. Ck held the ball to long. All 2 seconds. Lol

  28. It was clear to me that Fox didn’t have cameras lined up exactly on the goal line. The replays on the possible safety and Crabtree’s catch at the end of the game were not definitive because they were taken at an angle.

    For a $10 billion dollar business that’s criminal penny pinching.

    1. Referee Jerome Boger on the safety.

      “Not really because there was no shot down the actual goal line,” Boger said. “It was off the goal line. So maybe if we had a shot right down the goal line we could have looked at that aspect, but there was no shot available.”

      The same was true of Crabtree’s catch. He caught the ball over the goal line and completed the process of the catch moving out of the end zone. To use that shot to overturn the call on the field, the camera had to be lined up with goal line to make it “indisputable”.

      The NFL should require that there be four cameras installed in line with both goal lines for all NFL games. They shouldn’t leave it up to the networks.

      1. A more effective solution may be to just put a electronic chip with a sensor in the football that will detect crossing of the goal line. Can’t be that expensive.

        1. I heard Robinson bring that up this morning Mood, but it wouldn’t show if the ball is still in the players hands as it crosses the goal line. I don’t see that working as well as it does in soccer as a result.

  29. note to Colin: ” Rams Wrap-up ”
    so you averaged 7.1 yds on your passes
    (elite QBs = 8+ yards per )
    and then when you run it, an average of 2.8 yds per
    (elite QBs = 7+ yards per carry, okay? )

    How much film did you watch on the bye week?
    50-60 hours? 40…30…20….10 hours? Talking about
    observing the veterans: Brady, Manning, Farve, Brees, Rodgers.
    the list goes on and on. Roethlisberger, Luck… Russell Wilson.

    Better question: did Greg Roman/Coach Harbaw “recommend”
    any such homework for their franchise quarterback…???

    just imagine: a loss at home to the Rams. My, my, my.

  30. For those that are saying this loss is on Roman, without wanting to fan the flames, but every other team that has played the Rams knew they needed to get the ball out quick and play with extra protection against that front four.

    Now that said, the OL simply has to do a better job of protecting the QB. The Rams showed them up, but then most Ds have been showing them up this year. Through 8 games this year they have been the weakest unit on the team. Football is won and lost in the trenches, and the 49ers will keep struggling to win games while the OL can’t generate any push in the run game or keep the QB upright.

    Crabtree seems like he is trying too hard now, and his play is getting worse. Too many drops all season. I think it is highly unlikely the team re-signs him, and given the guys they have behind him I’d be thinking of getting others more involved. Vernon looked better today, but only by virtue of how bad he was the past two games. He was still mostly invisible.

    On the positive side of things, I thought the 49ers D had another great game. Bethea was the best player on the 49ers, simply outstanding. Cox got another INT, though that play should have been a TD to the Rams as he actually blew the coverage. But overall the entire secondary was very good once again.

    For all the grief Borland got after his first start, he was the everywhere man today. Great effort player, and made some huge stops. He blew a coverage that led to the Rams TD, but all in all a very good game for that young man. And Lynch continues to make a case for seeing the field even when Aldon returns, while the DL did a solid job once again.

    1. Scooter,

      Your points are well taken.

      First, I really dislike this sophomoric grading of players after each game. Maybe it appeals to fantasy football players. IMO, the only grading should be of the O, D, and ST as units. Football is the ultimate team sport.

      I am not solely blaming Roman — there’s enough blame to go around. However, criticism of Roman and the coaches on offense has to be seen in the wider context of the season, and maybe even stretching back to last season.

      Here are a few reasons why I’m now starting to sour on the offensive coaches:

      Overdependence on the power run game. Once that is taken away due to sub-par O line play or inadequate RB play, the coaches seem to be at a loss — trying one approach after another trying to see what sticks, thus creating a sense of loss of identity. The main reason for this problem may be their passing game strategy. Roman and Harbaugh are great at designing running plays and calling them at the right time in a given game. But they are more tentative about their passing game which is more about taking what defense gives, and playing off the run game, rather than an attacking passing game (e.g., passing to set up the run). The coaches seem to fear the turnovers from an attacking passing game which does not generate confidence among the players. I think this is one reason Niners are not succeeding in developing receivers and relying on veterans. I was watching tape of Bruce Arians coaching the Cardinal. He was barking at a hesitating Palmer to let loose at a streaking John Brown. The point was made. Trust yourself and the receiver. Take a risk. That’s how one develops the swagger. I miss the bicep-kissing Kap as they try to make a safe pocket QB out of him with occasional designed runs. That stuff worked for Alex but Kap does not seem to having much fun. In fact, nobody on the offense is having much fun this whole season.

      Underutilized talent. ’nuff said.

      Lack of effective gametime adjustments in response defensive adjustments. More often than not, first half offense is better than the second half offense.

      1. Need to add that Niners have now lost 3 out of the 4 lost games solely because of the offense.

        I get a sense of deja vu every Sunday after frustrating Saturdays of watching Stanford offense struggle in the same way under Shaw — who is Greg Roman wanna-be. Same issues — inflexible offense too dependent on power running that cannot use other talent available, head-scratching play calling at critical junctures, QB making more mistakes than one would expect at their experience level, inexplicable penalties at the worst times (something that never happened before)……

      2. Mood, I’ve not been particularly critical of the coaching staff throughout their tenure, as I think overall they’ve done a fantastic job of making the 49ers relevant again. But this season I agree with you – the offensive game plans have been ordinary to say the least, and for someone that is touted in some circles as being a creative genius, Roman has been underwhelming.

        If the 49ers want to transition to a more open offense, they first of all need an OL suited to the task. So far they have shown they are not (whether that be talent/ skill based or coaching, I don’t know). Second, they should probably have people on the staff with experience in designing and calling plays for such an offense. Without those elements, they are better off sticking with what works for them.

        The real shame is that the poor play of the offense has overshadowed some downright outstanding play from a depleted defense. The way the D has played they deserve to be on a team right in the playoff mix.

  31. Talk in about #7…Td? kaep never had possession of the ball, it was just squeezed between his wrist and OL back (or butt, what ever) at the snap, then it was clear got loose close, or crossing the goal line. You can’t blame referees if they did not overturned it. For the rest (sacks) our qb has shown again that he does not have clutch attitude when you need to use brain and “touch” in some of thise plays. Ergo= not an elite qb (yet?). I quote the post about him being under the Same system 4 yrs. And not having the skills to manage it at best. And this lead to another correct consideration about our offense identity as a “whole” system. So sorry for the guys that gave us so much on the field, in terms of heart and injuries during the JH era. Maybe the rumors about the locker room were not so fluffy. P.s. #15 was an impostor too in the last games

  32. “But you’re right, it’s not Kaep’s fault. According to the one of the dudes on KNBR, the Rams had the ends playing wide, and forced him to step up in the pocket.” – Fan

    “Its both. Pass protection was awful… and Colin takes way too long to get rid of the ball under pressure” – Brodie

    Both of these statements go back to coaching. If you want to blame Kaep because of his tattoos, I understand. Everyone is entitled to their own opinion and I respect that. The Rams had end playing wide forcing him to step up into the pocket. The Rams also sent many blitzes straight up the middle. The Rams made adjustments from the last game. Roman is in the press box for a reason. To see the game from a different view. He failed to make the adjustments after halftime. Like GEEZ you’re not smart enough to add 1-2 TE’s to that blocking scheme. But it’s Kaep’s yeah okay. Also comparing the Niners offense to the Broncos is asinine. Peyton Manning ALWAYS has a 5yd route, 10yd route, 15yd route, and a deep man. His plays aren’t slow developers. Many of our pass plays are not quick hitters. They are slow developers, with slow receivers, etc. They want to use Kaeps arm and it’s killing us because he doesn’t have time for those plays to develop. This all goes back to scheme. If you see something is not working in the 1st half you make adjustments. Nothing was done to stop the onslaught of d-lineman from killing Kaep.

    Kaep has his faults. Are there times where he holds on to the ball too long, yes. Are there times when he should escape the pocket and doesn’t, yes. If he were to do those things many people would complain he leaving too soon. Or throwing the ball away too early.

    Harbaugh/Roman need to figure it out and figure it out fast. Whether they go to the playoffs or not by the end of the season they need to have an identity for next yr. If not, Harbaugh should be prepared to get rid of his boy. Take the pay increase he was about to get and give it straight to a new OC.


  34. We just all need to stop making excuses for an average team. They have played like crap all year and continue to show no improvement as an offense. Roman should go, the lack of development in 4 years is atrocious. Kaepernick is not markedly better than he was a year ago, while Andrew Luck is. Not saying I expect Kaep to be THAT guy, but I certainly expect him to be better in terms of consistency.

    In 3 of our 4 losses, Kaepernick was terrible, just awful. Regardless of what you any of us may think of Kaep (I like him), he cannot be awful in 50% of our games. That is not going to work. Either he and Roman get on same page, or Roman needs to go quickly.

      1. Yes, I think as an overall game, he wasn’t good. Granted he was under pressure, but he also needs to get rid of the ball quicker and use his legs more effectively in those situations. Use their aggression against them. Also, when you fumble on the last play of the game, on the one inch line, that’s a crappy game. Technically, he lost the game for the 49ers. You can dress it up all you want, but does not change the reality. I have not seen the level of improvement I was expecting from Kaepernick this year, which is very disappointing. I do blame much of that lack of improvement on Roman, who I think is an above average OC, but clearly not elite.

    1. Roman has to go. This offense regardless who has been the QB has always had issues. Time clock, pass blocking, play calling hiccups, no Rhythm, no consistency, etc. While Kaep is 3rd or 4th in line for blame. I lay this offensive mess at the feet of Harbaugh/Roman. Next up Kaep/Oline. Somewhere in between is the problem.

  35. “My charge — our responsibility as a coaching staff — is to maximize the opportunities for our team to win, and we can still reach all of our goals for this season,” – John Harbaugh, December 2012, after firing is friend and offensive coordinator, Cam Cameron.

    “Insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results” – Albert Einstein

  36. Roman is the “WORST” offensive play caller in the league! He should be dismissed immediately! No offensive cohesiveness, terrible O-line play, and a running game that is missing in action. Harbaugh is just as inept! Playing the game to kick field goals….he’s gutless! And can we please draft or sign a receiver (i.e. Brandon Marshal type) that can stretch the field! The worst 49er offense ever!!!

  37. Soooo many problems – where does one start?
    – Greg Roman turns out to not be the genius everyone swooned about. Time for you to go.
    – As others have pointed out, you have fast and dangerous receivers (Lloyd/Johnson) and the best ball control receiver in the league (Boldin). If the D blitzes you get man coverage (LB on a healthy Vernon Davis is a matchup you want). If the DBs are back with the deep WR you have room underneath with Boldin . Stretch the field and then run the ball with a heavy package!
    – Goal to go on the 1? Run Gore! If that doesn’t work,bootleg with the fastest QB in history. You could also go for the tie since your D was doing great work and you did drive the ball at the end of the 4th.
    – Bring in a veteran QB to mentor Kap. Someone who understands Kap’s talents. Randall Cunningham anybody?
    – Figure out what you are and then execute. Season’s half over and I don’t know what the team is now on O.
    – Bowman/Smith/Willis returning will help a lot. Play Dontae more. Not worried about the D.

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